Beauty in the Daily: my big organization reveal

Office MakeoverI’ve lately discovered that beauty and order are necessary for my sanity. And like so many out there, it was so hard to keep my house in any kind of order, I’d clean up, and the junk would return seemingly out of no where! So I’ve been following the KonMari method as described in The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up and I haven’t been doing it long enough yet to declare that it absolutely works but with all the areas I’ve hit so far, the clutter hasn’t come back!

And what’s more, I’ve been able to actually find systems that work to maintain things the way I want them, so nothing gets that far behind.

I’m not going to try to duplicate the book, because I’d rather tell you about what I did to make my office and mud room beautiful, but I do have some reflections on the sorts of systems we need that actually work and flow with our lives for another post coming soon, my children willing and the creek don’t rise and all that 😉

I built my first pipe shelf for my office project! I bought 1/2 inch flanges, 12 inch long “nipples,” and end caps, and screwed them into the wall. Then I added a 4-foot long shelf, in this case, I bought a 1×10 select pine board, because it looked like the 1×12 wasn’t going to sit flat on my pipes. Flanges got screwed into a stud on one side and with four heavy duty anchors on the other (dang stud wasn’t in the right spot and I had to have balance!).

The numbered files are just Ikea’s Flyt files, ordered from Amazon, because no Ikea near me, sniff sniff! I added the big black vinyl numbers for a bit of differentiation and because I thought it looked cool in a similar pin.

The white organizer behind my computer was a church rummage sale find.

I made the wire photo display and mason jar organizer this week as well. They are 2 foot long craft boards (pre cut in the lumber section), also select pine. 1×4 for the photo display and 1×6 for the mason jar organizer.

The display is just eye hooks screwed in and strung with picture hanging wire, the mason jar organizer, well, that deserves it’s own post because several tutorials I found left out key info.The two photo boards are hung with the large command strips for pictures. They say they hold 16 pounds, I put 2 on each picture board just to be sure. The mason jar organizer is hung with screws and anchors.

I stained all the boards and the shelf with a tea and vinegar method, I’ve got pics and will write about that as well (I’m racking up the list for future posts today, aren’t I?) but it’s way cool and totally non-toxic!


This is the opposite side of the office with all my Jamberry work now beautifully stowed on the built in book shelves.

And since this post is long already, I’ll do a picture only laundry room tour and if there are questions, well, I can always write another post 😉



I wanted a something happy to focus on when doing laundry :-)

mudroom 12562593_10154466649104307_402241870_o 12528664_10154466649074307_194005802_o 12511377_10154466649149307_1653267556_o


12511929_10154450996994307_1765693971_nStanding in my kitchen in the gray light of the morning, hands clasped around the warm stoneware of my mug, my mind races with possibility. So many things I want to accomplish, but I must pick and choose.

I’ve been reflecting a lot lately on the New Year’s resolutions and the daily-ness of life and realize that in so many ways they clash. We set these big shining goals and feel good about them, but in each day, what are we doing?

It sounds trite to say that each day is a gift and yet, it’s so true. We don’t know how many of them we have. None of us are guaranteed tomorrow. Literally our whole life is right now.

Like Romilly in Interstellar, a scientist who finds himself alone for many years longer than expected, when finally reunited with his team, he is asked, “why didn’t you sleep?” And he says, “I didn’t want to sleep my life away.”

So many times we find ourselves sleeping away our lives, not literally like Romilly had the option to do, but in waiting for the next thing, the next relationship, the right job, a big trip, or what have you.

But all we ever have is today, this moment. Everything else is a memory or a dream, and while both of those are important, both can shape who we are, they are the ghosts that accompany us, both sinister and friendly.

It’s easy to let the internet breed discontent with your life, or to be angry at yourself for giving up on yet another resolution.

Sometimes I wonder if we go about this all wrong, the resolutions, the goal setting. We write out these absolute facts and figures for our year and in that moment we feel good about ourselves, we picture ourselves as accomplishing those things, and it’s grand. But life intervenes and goals don’t get met. And in despair, we give up on the rest of them.

What if it’s not about the specific details by a specific date?

I mean, it’s fine to want to lose weight or get in shape or get your house organized or get out of debt. These are all fine and worthy goals. But all too often we go about trying to accomplish them all wrong.

12528174_10154450997069307_1373701358_nThere is no “new year, new me.” No one can change in an instant and overhaul their entire life. And why should you? For better or for worse, I like who I am now. I’ve invested a lot of time, sweat, and tears in becoming this person. I don’t want a new me, I’d rather just keep working on what I have.

What if instead of treating each year as a blank slate, we looked at the only blank slate we truly have? This day.

So I made some daily resolutions that I have more thoughts on, but those are other posts for other days.


The forest speaks to me…


The forest speaks to me
Trees standing, branches raised
Slender wooden fingers
Reaching always for the sun
A tangle of roots running rampant
Drinking food from the deep black bosom of the earth
Everything is born from darkness
From the soil and the womb
And I, rooted firmly in the deep
Stand, life coursing through me
Arms uplifted towards the sun

-Anna Howard, 11-29-2015