Knoxville has been lucky and so far no heavy snow fall or power outages but the temps have been in the teens…..so cold. I grew up in Northern Indiana so I’ve lived thru alot of snow storms, blizzards and power outages. My prayers are with everyone from Texas to Maine that power and heat is restored.
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Happy New Year, everyone.
I have been diagnosed with COVID-19. I have a terrible cough and I ache otherwise no other symptoms. I will be in quarantine for 10 days. So Christmas eve dinner with friends is canceled and Christmas dinner with family friends I’ve been going to since before my parents passed away is canceled also. I have spent Christmas morning all myself since my mom died, so nothing new there. I am trying not to be sad or feel sorry for myself but it’s been difficult. Not being close to my siblings and having no family of my own makes this time of year very lonely. But I am not going to dwell on it. It makes me appreciate everything I have. Merry Christmas and every one stay safe.
Just sitting around on a rainy day so I decided to do some crafts. I can’t wait until I can get back to setting up at a craft fairs.
Here is the wreath I made. Not bad. Wreaths aren’t something I have ever made before.
I think alot of people are trying to make Christmas extra special because of all of the craziness 2020 has been. So I made a list of My Christmas Traditions I want to do.
On my list is to make a Gingerbread house. It didn’t turn out as I had hoped for.
Original Poem by Pamela K. Smith 9/24/2020
He kissed her.
It was like she had never been kissed before.
He touched her face and she felt the spark between them.
He looked into her eyes and all of the pain and loneliness left her.
She wonder what she did for him.
She didn’t know she had slayed all of his demons with her kind words, gentle touch and loving heart.
Going on my second month working for a temp service. It’s nice going to work every day and having a paycheck. The current job I am at is until the end of the year with a possiblity of being hired on full time. But like most people, my mind set this year is, I am not planning anything beyond today. Whatever happens I know my life is wonderful and I am just going to be.
I signed with a staffing service at the beginning of this week and today I started working in the customer service department and if everything goes well they might hire me.
Here is a painting I’ve been working on.
This month is plastic free July. Here are upcycled T-shirts I made into grocery bags. $15.00 plus SH.
The skinny end of the ties I made into headbands. The 2 buttons are so the headband can be adjusted and stays better on your head.
I wont be going back to work until July 24. Trying to stay busy. Here are some hats that I have added some umph too.
Boy how time has flown by. I have been working on crowns made from the big end of mens ties. Here is are a few pictures of the process and the end results.
Staying busy during quarantine. I turned several ties I had on hand into headbands. Below are a few of the ties. Picture 1 the ties are cut. Pictures 2, 3 and 4 are the bands I sewed at one end. Picture 5 the finished product.
Here are some dresses that I bought from Goodwill last year that I plan on turning into veils or fascinators.
Several weeks ago I finished clearing out and organizing my art studio. Here are some pictures.
March I was put on furlough and of course it was jarring but I have accomplished alot around my home. I have also learned a few things.
1. From now on I am going to buy 2 of alot of things that I had stopped when I was thinking of a more simple/ minimalist life. 2 or 4 toilet paper packages, Kleenex, wipes etc.
2. I experimented with cooking and I really love avocados.
3. I need to become a better gardener.
4. Stock piling nonperishable food isnt a bad idea.
5. I enjoy being home.
I hope everyone is safe and healthy.
Today I was informed that Thursday will be my last day at work until May.
I am trying to stay positive even though my emotions have run the gamut since receiving the news.
I have made and written out a game plan so this time off will be used wisely and it will also help me not panic and fall into a depression. My plan includes my normal daily meditation and exercise to a new to do list.
And I know I am not the only one facing this. I have been thru worse and survived. We all will be stronger, not just America but the whole world.
Stay strong and send out positive vibes everyone.
In trying to live a more simple and healthy life I have been eating better. I am also following more of how Europeans eat, how Americans use to eat and how I ate when I was growing up. Simple but well rounded meal that included a meat, vegetable and a nod to the French cheese and always dessert!
In trying to live a simple and clutter free life I seem to be doing it backwards.
Instead of clearing everything out and then arranging say for example the family room. I am arranging the room the way I want to live in it and then getting rid if what doesn’t fit.
Also, I am reusing items that I would have just gotten rid of at first glance. I put my cats treats in a canister instead of keeping the treats in the original packaging. Expired spices my mom had I washed and clean the bottles and now they hold everything from Q-tips to craft supplies.
Talking about crafts my sewing area, that is still on my to do list.
I did read an article that was an eye opener. It said, if you were moving what would you want to pack and have in your new home. So when I am trying to decide if I want to keep something I think of that statement.
When I bought my parents’ house after my mom passed away, I inherited all of my mom’s stuff plus the stuff I had. I had no help from my siblings, they live in another state and quite frankly they are not people I want in my life.
All of the sorting and cleaning was very overwhelming. I would be doing good for a few months and then things would happen, and I would just stop and getting started back to cleaning out seemed to be harder and harder. I found myself going in circles, so I started reading different articles about living a simple life or a minimalist life and well it is really quite confusing and funny. Most articles say about the same thing. Get rid of everything you don’t like and keep the rest. Ok, I can do that, but what I am looking for are articles on more practical or exact steps, I guess.
For example ~ I put a key ring on the zipper tab in my purse and then I put a hook on my key ring so I can latch my keys to the key ring and not lose my keys in my purse.
One article suggested getting rid of your purse and carry a small wristlet that holds your credit cards and cell phone. Well that won’t work for me because I wear glasses to read. I don’t need to wear the glasses all the time, just to read fine print. So carrying a wristlet isn’t going to work for me. I can not find and believe me I have looked for a purse like that that has a holder for the cell phone and for glasses. Also a lot of the little wristlets seem to be made just to hold credit cards. I have a debit card, but I do not have credit cards, I use money for most of my purchases. I did however started carrying a small purse.
Years ago I went thru all of my purses. I carried a different purse for a month and by the end of the month if the purse was any way shape or fashion a pain to use, I donated it. I donated A LOT OF PURSES!
I also did this with my shoes. I made myself wear every single pair of shoes and boots that I owned. It was harder to get rid of my shoes than the purses. So now I have two pair of boots, one in black and one in brown. I have 3 pair of booties, black, brown and animal print. I have one pair of cowboy boots. I have two combat style of boots, one in brown and the other in burgundy.
I also found out that I love to wear loafers.
I am also doing that with my clothes. I have worn everyone of my pullover sweaters this winter and the ones that were too small or itchy went into the donation bag.
Another practical idea I use is turning all of your hangers backwards and by the end of the season, get rid of what is still turned backwards. I started this last year and it has helped a lot. I did it again the beginning of this year.
See that is the type of information I am looking for. Practical tools. Yes, clean out and go thru all of your stuff. That is a big part of living a simple or minimalist life. But when you do start to clean everything out where to start? I started with my smallest rooms, the bathroom. I have 1 ½ bathrooms. The ½ one was easy to go thru; I have a sink and a toilet. So I went thru all the stuff that was in sink cabinet and I was done.
The bigger one was a bit more daunting. My mom had 9 electric blankets most of the blankets did not have any of the controls. Then there were towels, lots and lots of towels and bedding. So I went thru the bed sheets and donated all of the electric blankets and the extra towels I had, I cut up to smaller sizes to use to clean with.
With all of that said, I have come up with a few ideas that have helped me.
- Make a list of all of the rooms; including closets in your house and then start by cleaning and going thru the smallest room and work your way up.
- Color coordinate your clothes. All of your clothes, from the closet to the dressers.
- Put all trousers, skirts, dresses, blouses, blazers etc. together in your closet and dressers. I find this very helpful.
- Turn your hangers around. At the end of the of each season see what you have and haven’t worn. If you haven’t worn something but you like it a lot and just can’t part with it, use this idea I read about, put the item in a box, put a picture of the item on the outside of the box and write a date of when you should open it. Say June 1 and see how you feel about that item. If you start looking for the item you put in the box before the date you set, you know you want to keep it.
- Once you wear an item but it in the back of the row. Example ~ a white blouse, put it back of the other white blouses you have. This is were the backwards hangers come into play.
- When it comes to organizing the kitchen, I would do a drawer at a time and then move to the cabinets.
- Extras and what if’s. So I have stuff that I keep at work, extra mascara and lipstick. Also have a sewing kit and comb I keep in my car. Now, if I was to follow the different articles that I read I would be getting rid of those extras and what if items. I however did not. I keep the extra mascara at work, so I don’t have to keep one in my purse. But I didn’t go out and buy another one, I took a lipstick or mascara that was almost used up and took it to work. I also do with my travel bag.
- Emails, television and cell phone uses. Most of the articles I read talked about limiting the time you spend on each of these activities. I feel each person has to do what is right for their life and job. I do however think that if you are having dinner with friends or family that cells phones need to be put away.
- Subscriptions. I subscribe to one magazine; however I get a lot of catalogs in the mail because years ago I signed up for free catalogs. I have cancelled all of the free catalogs that I signed up for, but I still get them in the mail. Usually with a warning that this will be my last catalog if I don’t order something! My compost box gets a lot of catalogs!
- When I started going thru the books my mom and dad had I took a lot of the books to a book exchange here in town. However you get more money for exchange than you do actual cash, which means more books. Yeah, they know what they are doing. Also, they don’t take all of your books! So the books that are rejected I took to my local thrift store. There were a few books most of them hard back, that I just didn’t want to give away, so I donated them to my library, and I got a tax credit.
So those are some of my thoughts on more practical ideas of living a simple life. I would love to hear everyone’s ideas and suggestions.
I found this Tommy Hilfiger purse at Goodwill for $4.99
So I found this Tommy Hilfiger purse at Goodwill for $4.99
Next month is my birthday and I usually take myself out to eat and I take a week of vacation. Since I am boycotting buying unnecessary things but I do want to buy myself a gift I have decided that I will go to a few of my favorite thrift stores and look around. I will only use my weekly spending money on anything I might buy. Which FYI I have cut in half. I do unfortunately need to buy a new bra because one broke, however I am not going to make that my birthday gift to myself. Bras are a necessary item. UGH. If I find something great and if not even better.
Being the New Year I turned all of my hangers around so that I can see what I am wearing and not wearing. I started this last year and it helped me a lot. I’m not trying to become a minimalist. At one time I thought I would and with that I had to have so many tops, skirts, jeans etc. and then I realized I live in the south and it is impossible to have a wardrobe that fits all of the seasons. I need tank tops for hot, humid days and sweaters for cold dreary days and having just 1 to 3 tanks tops just wasn’t going to work for me. So I re-evaluated my idea of the number of clothing items I SHOULD keep and focused on what I love to wear.
I realize I really want to just live a simple and happy life. I am just going to wear what I love and turning my hangers around helps me do that.
Stay warm everyone!
This year I am going to do my best and only buy what I need to have to live on like food and gas and maybe 2 new bras. Otherwise I really don’t need any clothes.
Happy New Year e everyone1
I’m trying to change the way I see things in life. For instance, on my pinterest board I would keep pins of sayings about how awful and hurtful friends and family treated me. I realized I’m keeping that negativity and dwelling on it, so I have been deleting those pins. I still read them and I’m taken them heart but I’m not saving the pins I’m not saying that I’m gonna be all hearts and rainbows and pink and everything’s all wonderful. But I’m not going to dwell on it. I am trying to find Peace & Love and let the negativity take care of itself.
In my quest to rid my life of unnecessary clothes, I am making myself wear pieces of clothing I rarely wear. So when I get dressed in the morning and I want to change the top or skirt or shoes etc because I don’t like something about that item, I know that is a sign to myself that I really don’t need or LOVE this item and it gets placed in the donations bag. Since I started doing this I have purged several items that I thought I just had to keep. This method seems to work better for me instead of just getting rid of everything but the basics. It’s like I give the item a chance to redeem itself.
Meanwhile, I am 1/2 way thru the first closet in the guest room.
So earlier I had said I wasn’t going to go thru and weed out my clothing, but I have been. While cleaning out the guest room I would continue the cleaning and go into my closet. This is what I have my clothing down to for now. I know down the road I will let go if more. Here is my current list:
23 Tank tops
13 Greek tops
11 Sheath tops
4 Long sleeve tops
7 Long sleeve blouses
42 Tee shirts
5 Long skirts
6 Pullover sweaters
8 Jeans/capris jeans
I bought 6 scarves at the Dollar tree store and sewed them into a autumn wrap. $6.00 compared to $29.99 and up. I like the wrap better than wearing jackets while driving.
Update on sorting and down sizing. I am concentrating on going thru stuff and not so much clothing, but I have narrowed down my jeans to 3 jeans and 4 capri jeans since work has started letting us wear jeans to work. Of course the jeans have to be in good condition, no tears, holes etc… so that’s off of my to do list.
It’s been awhile since I have written. I have been busy clearing out my parents closets. My mom still had some of Dad’s clothing, plus all of her clothing, jewelry etc. I clean out the garage….haven’t touched the shed! Yikes! My mom had 7 totes of stuff. The funny thing is the totes weren’t full. I cleaned out the laundry room and for the most part the kitchen. I am sorting dishes right now. I cleared out my mom’s closet, under her bed and all of the dressers. I finally washed her bedding and the dirty laundry she had from when she went into the hospital last August. That was a hard task. It made everything final… if that makes sense. I have the spare room and the family room still to go and clear out. I am not counting on all of the items my siblings want that I have to put aside and of course they live in another state so no help from them on cleaning and go thru stuff.
As I am clearing things out I have tried to go thru my stuff. I have tried to make my wardrobe minimalist (Insert minion laughing). Biggest problem is that I live in Knoxville, TN and the summers are unbearable. When you wake up at 6:00 AM and it’s 76 degrees out! So I have figured out that I have to have a spring/summer wardrobe and an autumn/winter wardrobe.
So I have narrowed it down to this: (Insert minion laughing again)
7 Tank tops
14 Greek tops
7 Sheath tops
14 Tee shirts
7 Tank tops
7 Sheath tops
14 Tee shirts
7 Pullover sweaters
7 Tank tops
7 Sheath tops
14 Tee shirts
Which is a total of 234 pieces of clothing. I am going to try to narrow it down. This should be fun! LOL
The past 9 months have been a roller coaster of emotions. But after tons of tears, heartache and pain there was a light at the end of my tunnel and I was finally able to buy my parents home.
Happy Valentines Day
It’s been awhile since I have posted anything. I was going to buy my parents home, but without going into to much detail a sibling of mine got a lawyer.
So now I am house hunting. It is exciting and scary all wrapped up in a bundle of I have to pack and move.
And so the adventure begins!!!
I always take the week of my birthday off. I have to say I think celebrating my birthday will be harder without my parents than Thanksgiving or Christmas was. I am lucky and have good friends that have become like family.
Today I only work a 1/2 day and then meeting up with some friends for lunch.
Going on the second week of work’s new building and trying to get settled in. Lets see, no heat, not hot water, mice and mice traps! People getting stuck in elevators. Only 4 microwaves for a company of 400 1 paper towel holder, 1 trash can in the cafeteria.
Otherwise so happy to be here!
Moving to the new building. We have tomorrow and Monday off and back to work and the new building Tuesday.
My personal thoughts on that is …. I should have bought a lottery ticket!
It is hard to believe that 2017 is coming to a close, but I am glad that it is. 2017 has shown me who my true family and friends are and shined a light on others.
I have found out how strong I am, but I could have done without that lesson! LOL!!!
2018 is going to be a year full of changes.
My company is moving down town and may also be bought out by another. Time will tell on that.
I thought I was going to stay in my parent’s home, but I am having second thoughts on that.
The only one thing I know for certain is I am going to be happy! Stress and heart ache are not going to get the best of me.
So GOODBYE 2017 and HELLO to a 2018!
I hope everyone has a wonderful New Year!
I hope everyone has a Wonderful and Merry Christmas
Since my mom passed I have been going thru her things and it has made me realize how much STUFF! she and I both have. I can only weed thru her things a few days a week without breaking down and crying. Crying like I am now just writing this. If you read my blog you know I have done some weeding of my stuff…purses mostly. Well I am “TRYING” to go thru my things also. Since I do crafts I notice that I keep a lot of things because I could use this to make something! So my first step is not to BUY anything that I don’t actually use, need or eat. And it has been hard. I LOVE those solar dancers. I have stopped BUYING THEM!
I went thru my socks, nylons, pj’s & other items along that line. I am starting on shoes! My weakness in shoes are FLIP FLOPS from the $1.00 tree. So I wear a different colour every week! I went thru my heels and the ones that hurt my feet went to good homes.
My mom has a tons of shoes….well at least I come by that naturally! She wore a size 6 to 6 1/2 I wear 7 1/2 wide! Thanks Dad! So there is no temptation to keep her shoes!
My long term goal is to keep and use what I have and to only buy what I need. The crafter/artist in me is screaming! NO but I will just have to do more craft fairs so the stuff I buy for my crafts will be sold as a craft. I have a craft fair next month and I am sewing up a storm…well a light drizzle!
Thanks for letting me vent.
My mom passed away Sept 5, 2017
My mom had surgery Friday and it went fine, now she just has to wait until her drainage tube runs clear so they can remove it and she can go home. I am at work today, but I have friends that are going to stay with her during the day and then I will go to the hospital after work.
July has been a busy month for me. My mom has had a lot of dr appts and next month will be busy also as she will be having lung cancer surgery. It’s just 1 small spot, which is great since my mom is 81 has been smoking since she was 15, but surgery is surgery.
Hopefully the dr wont find any cancer in her lymph nodes and she recovers fast.
With all the going on my work place is moving to our new building in October, but the building is still being worked on. The Boss Lady is having us move by floor. My dept and several others will be on floor 7. So that should be fun (insert snarky voice here)! However I try to not to borrow worry and whatever happens in October will happen.
So bye July and Hello August!
Back from Vegas! Actually, I came back middle of last week, but I had to play catch up at work and then Monday I had a craft fair. The fair was fun, but hot and muddy!
There was a place where you can make your own flip flops. So fun!
Jessica and Chelsey Employee helping us
My flip flops!
I didn’t take a lot of pictures. I was mostly looking and gambling. I didn’t win big but I had fun trying to!
This week is a short week for me. This weekend is a girls weekend to Las Vegas! Beyond Excited!
Besides spending time with my mom on Mothers Day, I did some sewing this weekend. I made a crown from some men’s ties
What is so great is that I used the big end of the tie. Doing that cut my sewing time in half.
Then I made up some skirts from bandanas. The pink one (which I am wearing today) I lined this one and I didn’t the others I made. I will wearing capris leggings with the skirts that aren’t line. Going forward, however I am going to line the skirts. I use 3 bandanas. With bandanas that have designs I use 2 and the 3rd one is solid. I cut the solid one in half and sew between the design bandanas.
Pink elephant skirt line with other bandanas.
I love this elastic band material. It is the same material that is used for baby headbands. It is so much easier to sew with then the normal white band type of elastic. I got the elastic material at Wal-Mart, they had alot of colours but no white or black; so that is why the green and paisley skirts have blue bands.
I’ve been wanting a big bulky turquoise necklace and I haven’t found any that
A – I just can’t bring myself to buy an expensive necklace
B – I don’t like the style
So, I bought 3 necklaces for $2.88 each and I am going to make my own. Believe it or not these necklaces are a lot cheaper than buying beads at a craft store. I can’t wait to put them all together!
Back to work after a nice long weekend. I could get use to working 3 1/2 days! I did some shopping over the weekend. I found this cute phone cover for my Samsung at the $1.00 Tree! Samsung phone covers are hard to find. iPhone covers are everywhere, so when I saw this I snagged it up.
Then a me and a friend when shoe shopping. I got some new sandals to replace a pair I have had forever!
New ones Old ones
My friend Mandy who started wearing black pants and a white blouse to work every day has decided to change things up. I am surprised she has done the black and white outfit for as long has she has. She said she is switching it up. She is doing black top/white pants and white top/black pants every other day. She told me last summer which was unbelievable hot here in Tennessee almost did her in. So she decided this year she would make the change. I couldn’t do that. I love colour too much. She is doing to her black tops and pants like she did her white tops. Getting 5 or so different designs. I suggested to her to add checked tops and/or capris, then she has both black and white. She did tell me one thing she added; which I love, she wears a pair of colourful shoes every day! I love that idea!
Tell me, could you make yourself wear the same colours to work everyday and be okay with it?