I am a self-diagnosed neat freak. I love to clean and I love to organize. (If I could have a container, holder and/or label for EVERYTHING, my life would be complete!) And this is my brand new blog for everything NEAT!
I have a toddler in perpetual motion, a packrat daughter, a dog and a disorganized husband... and I hope to share the challenges, trials, errors, rewards and insights of being a bit "too clean obsessive" in a family that's not so in love with neatness. And I am making a promise to clean, rearrange, organize and simplify my life... and help you along the way! SO stay tuned for my journey toward everything orderly and efficient!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Day 106: Neat chalk?

When I was teaching high school, I refused to use a chalk board. I hate chalk. It makes my nose itchy. And I REALLY hate erasers. Yuck. They are always... so... chalky!

Of course, I DO love my flat, vinyl chalk board in my kitchen (click HERE to see that post). And while I was talking about my dream pantry from last post with my sister-in-law (who also loves the neat, organized, containerized and labeled look), I remembered that I had a "wet erasable" chalk "marker" from Uppercase Living with the rest of my stash of goodies and samples.

OK. I LOVE this thing! It is NOT chalky or messy... and it writes so beautifully! It's liquidy and smooth and lovely! You can see the difference between the "real" chalk that's already here... and the new chalk marker writing!

You will love them, too, if you have a chalk board... or if you plan to add one to your kitchen wall to keep track of schedules; plaster one on the fridge to take notes of what you need to buy next trip to the grocery store; or crop one down to make neat labels for your pantry... or for anything else in your home!

Want some chalk "markers" of your own? Click HERE! (There are 3 different colors.) Want a vinyl chalk board, too? Click HERE! (There are several sizes and fun shapes!)

Now, THAT's neat!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Day 105: The Beauty of Labels

This is not my pantry.... And I am a little jealous! :)

This is the very organized pantry of Lori M., a new acquaintance of mine. And while I do use the Tupperware containers and organize everything as neatly as possible (similar items together and labels out!), I do not have the luxury of putting everything in a container. (I have a LOT more items in my pantry!) And I do not have a label on everything, either. But isn't this a wonderful idea!?!?

This is kind of like my dream pantry.

1. I love how just about everything matches. It really is a pretty pantry!!!! But if you don't have every Tupperware container ever made (ha-ha!), then use what you DO have! All sizes and shapes are welcome!

2. I love using containers for just about all the food in the pantry. It's great to have items like flour and baking mix in air-tight containers. It looks good, stacks well... AND it will stay fresh much longer. (It's also more difficult to spill!)

3. I love the labels. I really think I would label everything, if I could! It looks SO neat, and it's so very functional! You can print out labels or just write on the traditional, sticky, office kinds that you can pick up almost anywhere. (Color coding might even come in handy here....) OR, you can do what Lori did in her pantry: cut up a piece of Uppercase Living's chalkboard vinyl into various sizes. (This method won't leave you with sticky residue if you decide to remove the labels.) Then, apply the custom sizes to your containers, and write right on them! Of course, my handwriting isn't as great as my friend's. BUT, this should spark all of our imaginations!

Lori has also given us an EXTRA NEAT tip: write directions, recipes or notes on the containers! This is great for reminding yourself how to make pancakes or biscuits or how long to boil your noodles!

Now, THAT's neat!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Day 104: Pretty Neat Soap

I have no problem with keeping some "not-so-beautiful" things out in plain view, if they are things that I use daily. I mean, it is a bit impractical to store ALL our everyday items out of sight.

Of course, a bottle of dish-washing liquid isn't all that attractive....

But who says you CAN'T have a nicer way to use and display these plain, dull things?!?

As y'all know, I love using baskets and decorative boxes to stow away items that are useful but may not be too attractive. Neither works very well with liquid items, though! ;) SO, here's a GREAT way to beautify a simple, useful cleaning product.

I bought this lovely glass bottle at Hobby Lobby and just squeezed the dish liquid right in! Now, it's sitting in the exact same spot... but it looks a whole lot better!

Now, THAT's neat!