DIY Button Balloons Card

Button balloons card organizationlove.wordpress.com

Materials:

  • The Paper Studio value pack ivory notecard/envelope 4″x5.5″ [Michaels]
  • Button Sensations buttons pack (6008 Citrus)
  • Black/white twine [Michaels]
  • Elmer’s Craft Bond Tacky Glue 4 fl oz
  • scissors

OrganizationLove Pro Tip:

  • I put the twine through the button’s holes and tied it in the back. I cut off excess on one side of the knot and put glue down. The other side of the knot is the “balloon string.”
  • I also put glue where I knotted together all 3 strings.
  • I thought it was cute to have the button holes facing different directions, not identical. Don’t over think it! ūüôā

Some Ideas for Captions:

  • Happy birthday
  • Celebrate
  • Birthday wishes
  • Party time

Inspired?

  • If my post¬†inspires you, and you blog about it, I ask that you credit me!

Efficiently and Thoroughly Clean and Disinfect Two Bathrooms

I have one and a half bathrooms in my one-story house. Both bathrooms get regular/frequent use. When I clean, I get them both done at once. I did not include the shower because personally, it is my least favorite thing to clean in the whole house and I do it on a different day. I also did not include the floors. I mop all the linoleum in the house on the same day. This works well for two bathrooms on the same floor, because you will be running back and forth between the two. This is because the disinfectant takes a few minutes to really work.

Efficiently and Thoroughly Clean and Disinfect Two Bathrooms

Materials needed:

  • 12-14 small rags (it’s a lot, but prevents cross-contamination)
  • Glass-cleaning cloth (I use a microfiber cloth specifically for glass/windows)
  • Towel (mine is an old, stained hand towel. Doesn’t have to be big at all)
  • Toilet cleaner (I used Borax) and toilet brush
  • Disinfectant (I make my own: 1 part rubbing alcohol + 2 parts water + a few drops of dish soap + shake well)
  • All-Purpose Cleaner (I use Branch Basics, diluted for all-purpose)
  • Glass cleaner (I use Branch Basics, diluted for glass)

Here are the steps I follow.

  • Put toilet cleaner in toilet bowl #1, swish around with brush, let sit.
  • Repeat for toilet #2.
  • Liberally spray toilet #1 with all-purpose cleaner.¬†Repeat for toilet #2.
  • Wipe down toilet #1. Use as many rags as you feel necessary – I use 2-3.
  • Using new rags, repeat for toilet #2.
  • Liberally spray all parts of toilet #1 (including in the bowl) with disinfectant. Let sit. Repeat for toilet #2.

As the bowl cleaner and disinfectant sits, move on to sink #1.

  • Clear off sink #1. Liberally spray all-purpose cleaner on sink #1. Repeat for sink #2.
  • Wipe down sink #1. Wipe down sink #2.
  • Liberally spray disinfectant on sink #1. Let sit. Repeat for sink #2.

As the toilets continue to disinfect, and the sinks disinfect,

  • Spray and wipe down mirror #1. Repeat for mirror #2.

Back to toilets/sinks:

  • Wipe down toilet #1. Again, I use 2-3 rags just to be on the clean side.
  • Scrub toilet #1 bowl with brush and flush when finished.
  • Wipe down¬†toilet #2. Scrub bowl #2 and flush when finished.
  • Wet new rags and wipe down/rinse sink #1. Technically, you should rinse the disinfectant like this – I don’t for the toilets because I don’t want to use a towel to dry the toilets.
  • Use a towel to dry sink #1.
  • Using the same wet rag, wipe down/rinse sink #2. Towel dry sink #2. (May or may not need new towel depending on how soaked you got it the first time!)

YOU ARE FINISHED! Enjoy your shiny, clean and disinfected bathrooms!

Additional tips:

Let toilet bowl cleaner drip dry into toilet before putting it back in its container. Do this by placing it between the toilet seat and the rim, with the brush part over the bowl.

Wipe your mirrors in an S-like pattern, starting at the top and working your way to the bottom, for no streaks.

Clean your toilet in an order that makes sense to you so you don’t wipe rim/seat germs back onto the handle, etc. For example: Rag #1 wipes (in this order): top of tank, sides & front of tank, handle. Rag #2: Outside of lid, inside of lid, top of seat. Rag #3: underside of seat and rim.

Always shut the toilet lid before flushing to prevent floating water/particles from spraying on your walls… or toothbrushes… etc. It is known that the spray can reach 6 feet.

If you use a reusable cup to rinse after brushing your teeth like I do, bathroom-cleaning day is a great time to remember to change out the cup (or simply wash and replace it!)

Don’t forget to wipe down any toothbrush holders, soap dispensers, etc that reside on the sink. Clean and disinfect that stuff too!

How often do you clean your bathrooms? Do you have a routine?

Meal Planning and Grocery List

My husband and I are working on saving money and eating healthier by eating out less. We have tried meal planning in different ways before, but since we are getting more serious about it, I saw an idea on Pinterest and went for it!

Meal Planning and Shopping List!

I was thinking of selling this on my Etsy shop [savannahPcards], but because I copied the format from another organizer, I decided it would not be okay to profit off of this! So I am writing here instead – because I am still very proud of how it turned out! [If you would like your own, click this link and purchase hers!]

Usually we focus on planning dinner for my family, because we buy the same sorts of things for breakfast and lunch each week. With this strategy, you plan your meals on the same page as the shopping list.

And if you plan for more than a week in advance, you can print out multiple sheets.

I am thinking I’ll print a new one each week, but to be more environmentally friendly, you could print once on cardstock and either laminate or put in a plastic cover and use a dry erase marker to reuse. My issue with that was dragging around a laminated full-page to the grocery store, because I tend to fold my shopping lists enough that I can fit in a purse or pocket.

Here’s a bigger picture!

Meal Planning and Shopping List!

I customized it by how I shop.

  • Produce is when you first walk in our grocery store, and it’s the biggest section because we buy a lot of produce. Its box is green, because that’s the color produce makes me think of.
  • Shelves is the next largest section because there are a lot of shelves. However, we don’t buy as much from here. Noodles, sauce, beans, cereal, etc. The pink outline has no meaning : )
  • Bulk/natural is included because we shop at a store with an included Health Market. We buy things like chia seeds in bulk, coconut oil in natural, etc. We certainly don’t buy much here, but it was worth adding. Its outline is brown because nature/natural is brown in my book! (Since I already used green.)
  • Meat is slightly bigger.¬†We buy our dinner meats from the meat counter section. Outline is red.
  • Dairy is decent-sized¬†because we buy a lot of dairy. Milk, cheese, cheese sticks, yogurt, eggs, taco shells, tea, ham… The outline is yellow kind of like¬†cheese/egg yolks.
  • Frozen is blue, and we buy a lot of frozen veggies and sometimes some ice cream or some treat.
  • Non-food would be like dog food, trash bags, pharmaceuticals, etc. The outline is black.

Could also¬†include a deli section, but we don’t buy anything from there.

How would you make your list customized for your needs?

An Organized Cord, Electronic, and Battery Drawer

Before buying our house, we never had enough drawer space to have a junk drawer. We did have a lot of cords and electronic accessories so we had a “cord and battery drawer” in the bottom of a side table. We still have it, and today we went through it all. We found so many cords that we didn’t know what they went to, plus a bunch of cords that we did know where they belonged – with something we no longer owned! This is the gallon bag I am bringing to Best Buy to recycle these cords:

An Organized Cord, Electronic, and Battery Drawer at OrganizationLove.wordpress.com

Some things that went in this bag included:

  • Old cell phone/camera chargers (The cell phones are no longer in our possession)
  • Phone cords (we only use ours for the internet, and we don’t need extra)
  • Computer charger that was broken
  • Cords that we didn’t know what they belonged with

We also threw away a lot, such as:

  • Old memory cards we’ll never be able to use again
  • Multiple camera straps
  • Dead batteries
  • Broken earbuds

We kept chargers and adapters we use.

I labeled anything that wasn’t already with bread ties and Sharpie.

An Organized Cord, Electronic, and Battery Drawer at OrganizationLove.wordpress.com

Also, used twist ties to contain the cords. (Or, once, a toilet paper tube for a longer cord.)

An Organized Cord, Electronic, and Battery Drawer at OrganizationLove.wordpress.com

Used battery containers from the Container Store (found here)¬†to contain batteries of all sizes. I don’t have any C batteries right now and I used the C-sized container to keep extra size AAs.

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Some things I love to have that I keep in this drawer also:

  • A battery checker

An Organized Cord, Electronic, and Battery Drawer at OrganizationLove.wordpress.com

  • A reusable battery¬†charger

An Organized Cord, Electronic, and Battery Drawer at OrganizationLove.wordpress.com

This is the drawer now. It includes

  • chargers
  • adapters
  • battery checkers
  • battery charging device
  • batteries
  • mini flashlight
  • less-used earbuds
  • mini tripod for camera
  • microphone
  • old disposable camera that I’ll use up and find some place to develop
  • old iPod Nano that I only use on long car rides (and the adapter to go with it)
  • camera when I’m not using it – then I don’t lose it so much

An Organized Cord, Electronic, and Battery Drawer at OrganizationLove.wordpress.com

Of course, I have other chargers and electronic accessories that I do not keep in this drawer – such as both our cell phone chargers (used nightly), my laptop charger (used regularly), bigger flashlights, etc.

Do you have a place to store your cords? Have you ever gone through it?

How to Clean and Care for Your Menstrual Cup

This is part 2/2 in my series on the menstrual cup. Part 1, 9 Reasons Why I Chose a Menstrual Cup, can be found here.

The Diva Cup website really has a great explanation of how to insert the Diva Cup, so rather than restating everything they said, here’s the link: http://divacup.com/how-it-works/how-it-works/. For the record, I use¬†fold option 2, the “push down” method, as pictured:

How To Clean and Care for Your Menstrual Cup

Image courtesy of http://www.divacup.com

Now. What I really wanted to talk about was how to clean and care for your menstrual cup — hence the title of this blog post!

  • While you are menstruating, you need a quicker clean between dumping your cup out and reinserting it. Divacup.com advertises¬†a Diva Wash, but to be honest, I haven’t felt the need for that. I use a non-fragrant soap (Ivory bar soap) and warm water to wash out my Diva Cup.
  • In between cycles, I boil my cup in a small pot that I use ONLY for this purpose! (In fact, it stays in the bathroom when not in use.) Boil for at least 10 minutes… make sure not to boil all the water away or the cup will burn.
  • If at any time there is blood in the little holes around the rim of the cup, you have to clean that out, because it is the little holes that create the suction and hold it in place. To do this: Fill the cup with water, hold in one hand, cover the large opening with other hand, turn upside down, and push down on opening. The pressure pushes water through the holes and cleans them out. Just be careful where the water squirts (I hold it down in the sink.) Do not use toothpicks or any other way to clean the holes, as those can damage the cup.

Lastly, storage of your menstrual cup. The Diva Cup comes with a cotton bag. Be sure not to store your cup in a plastic bag. It’s important because the cotton is breathable.

Have you made the switch to a menstrual cup yet? Let me know!

The opinions stated in this blog post are mine alone. Facts and photo were obtained from http://www.divacup.com.

9 Reasons Why I Chose a Menstrual Cup

If you menstruate, or know someone who does, this post is for you. I used to wear tampons and pads during my time of the month, until 3 years ago when a friend introduced me to the idea that something better was out there. In this two part series, I am going to write first on why I chose a menstrual cup, and in part 2 (HERE), I will write about how to use and care for your menstrual cup (should you choose to accept it.) First, a quick explanation: a menstrual cup is a silicone cup that you fold and insert into your vagina when you are menstruating. The cup holds the blood until you remove it, dump the contents into the toilet, wash out, and reinsert. That really is the gist of it!

Why I prefer a menstrual cup – specifically, the DivaCup.

  1. You can wear the DivaCup for up to 12 hours. The cup holds 1 oz of menstrual blood, and most women only have about 1-2 oz PER CYCLE! No worries about it not being big enough.
  2. Unlike with tampons, there is no risk for toxic shock syndrome (TSS) with the cup. Therefore:
  3. …You can wear the cup overnight.
  4. It is safe enough to wear when you think you might¬†start your period but haven’t yet.
  5. Cost-effective. One of the main things that drew me away from tampons in the first place: The DivaCup (my cup of choice!) costs about $30 (It is $29.99 + S/H on drugstore.com) and lasts a whole year.
  6. Tampons (and pads for that matter) contain tons of chemicals to make them absorbent. Who wants chemicals up there?
  7. Environmentally friendlier, as you are not throwing away a ton of paper, cotton, etc.
  8. You can track your periods easily with the DivaCup, should you ever need to tell your doctor how much blood you put out monthly. There are measuring lines on the outside.
  9. In my experience, periods became shorter and lighter with the use of the DivaCup. (Not an FDA approved and evaluated statement, although other women have said the same thing.)

A question I received when sharing with family members about the Diva Cup was a great one – does it have to be fitted by doctor? Nope, this is a cup made of silicone that forms to your body – you can even buy it on the internet. There are 2 sizes, based on your age and whether you have given birth or not. The only things that I think people might not like about the cup is the “ick” factor, public restroom worries, and time constraints. To debunk:

  • It can be icky to dump the cup in the toilet (TIP: hold close to the bowl) (blood can be thick and I use toilet paper to clean it out fully) and wash out the cup. There’s no denying that. But, if you ask me, it’s really not that bad. I don’t think it’s much worse than the tampon stuff.
  • Public restrooms where there are stalls can be complicated. I read you can bring a bottle of water in to wash out the cup into the toilet if needed. However, given the 12 hours you can keep it in, I have literally never run into this issue.
  • Time constraints are the only thing that get to me. Some nights I wear just a pad to bed because I know I’ll be in such a rush the next morning that I won’t have time to remove, wash out, and reinsert the cup. Instead I wake up and put my clean cup in and remove the pad. I can’t debunk this. It takes less time to rip off a pad than to clean out your cup.

Would you use the DivaCup? What would be your reasoning for making the switch?

The opinions stated in this blog post are mine alone. Facts and photo were obtained from http://www.divacup.com.

Opt-Out of your Phone Book Delivery

If you are like me, you don’t use your phone book. The Internet does the job for me when I need to look up a business, yet¬†I get about 8 phone books a year. I am able to recycle them through my community’s curbside recycling program… but as part of a waste-free life, I would rather just not get them. Thankfully, there is a way to do that!¬† On the front of each phone book (I have 4 in my house) there is a little recycling sign. Next to the sign reads “To stop delivery of future directories visit http://www.yellowpagesoptout.com.”

optout

Sorry so blurry!

To opt-out of deliveries from Yellow Pages, you must enter an email address, create a password, and enter your name, address, and phone number. To those concerned:¬†I have never¬†received any spam emails, letters, or phone calls from Yellow Pages.¬†(I opted-out at our last house, too.) After entering your opt-out information, you will receive an email from “optout@yellowpagesoptout.com” for confirmation, but you don’t have to do anything with that. You are done! And should you move, just log in and change your address! That way, the person who lives in your previous home will have the option to keep or opt-out of the books as they choose. And you, at your new location, can opt-out as you please. This is especially useful for renters! I encourage everyone to look at the front cover of your phone books for a website – particularly if you receive a phone book other than Yellow Pages. Do you use your phone books? Will you opt out of phone book delievery?