Organization Tips and Tricks

There are few things I like better than a good organization project. Much to McDaddy’s dismay, Pinterest helps with any and all organization projects I am interested in.

In fact, I have an entire Pinterest board full of tips to help me around the house.

Most recently, I found this on Pinterest:

So, I did what I typically do when I know McDaddy will roll his eyes at my newest idea.

I went to MY Daddy.

I showed him the picture of the pin and asked if he thought it was something he could do.

And of course, he did it.

It looks almost identical to the one on Pinterest and I love it!

Basically, instead of squatting down low enough to easily wrestle with the pots and pans, all I do now is pull the entire drawer out, get what I need and then push it back in.


It is just as fabulous as it looks.

If you’ve spent any time around here, you may remember that my Dad also built a wall unit for my mudroom.

 This took organization in our home to a whole new level.

I have forgotten how beautiful this wall unit was before we bogged it down with everything it was meant to hold.

And finally, my newest organizational project makes me smile every time I open the cabinet door.

Here is the before…

which, I’ll admit it B – A- D.

And just take a look at this:


I found the basket on the right at Wal-Mart. It is really long and works like a drawer which means, AGAIN, that I don’t have to get myself down on the floor and go digging through the mess to find Bentley’s puppy shampoo.

Oh, and I almost forgot about this great storage hack,

All of those crazy plastic bags are now kept nice, neat and tidy AND they smell nice and fresh, too!

Happy Hump Day, y’all.

Another Day Off

Let me start by promising I won’t mention our water situation today.

You’re welcome!

Instead, I thought we might discuss the SNOW situation.


My boys have been to school for a total of three days since December 19th, and one of those days was a two-hour delay. (Not that I’m complaining, because I have enjoyed everyday with my boys, but because of the days missed, the kids now have to go to school until the end of May.)

We have 3-4 inches of snow on the ground. We had a snow day (and have another one tomorrow!). Earlier today, my neighbor, Jamie texted to ask if Stevie and Alex would like to come out and go sledding with her kids. She also promised hot chocolate. It sounded better than sitting in the house one. more. minute, so I threw some cookie dough in the oven because COOKIES!

The kids had a great time!

Earlier in the day, I also spent some time organizing some problem areas around this joint.

The area under our sink looked like this several weeks ago.

After repairing a leaky water pipe and adding a tension rod, it now looks like this.

I am sure I heard violins when I stepped back to take a look at this newly organized space.

I was so impressed with the big difference the little change made, I decided to organize the area under my bathroom sink, too. Unfortunately I didn’t get any before pictures.

Rest assured, it was a hot-mess.

Just look at this wonderfulness…

Extra make-up – aisle 1.

This next one is travel size and first-aid items, among other things.

And this last one is full of all of the crazy amount of little tubes of toothpaste and toothbrushes we get from the dentist, along with extra toothbrushes for visitors who might visit and forget theirs.

This little three-drawer organizer works so well in this space. I love it!

My Mudroom Is Finished!

There is always a project in progress up in here. For instance, we are in the planning stages of a new back deck. Not because we want a larger one, or a better one, rather, because the boards are rotting and I am fearful that one of us will end up in the back yard when we fall through a board.

The project that we (and by we, I mostly mean McDaddy because he does 90% of the work) most recently completed is my new mudroom. I actually contribute by researching and pinning ideas to my Pinterest board and my challenging McDaddy when he says something like, “that would be tough to do” because I am a firm believer that while it might be tough, tough does not equal impossible.

Thankfully, I am married to a guy who can do just about anything.

Back in October, I wrote a post called “Designing My Mudroom” and shared pictures of the wall unit that my dad built for the new room. When I wrote my 2013 Year in Review, it dawned on me that I never showcased the FINISHED PRODUCT.

Every time I enter the new mudroom, I squeal, because y’all, it is just beautiful. This is the wall unit that my dad built for the room.

Isn’t it fabulous?

[Note: This is the wall unit before the new foam flooring was installed.]

We ordered foam flooring almost two years ago and it has sat – in boxes – in the hallway until weeks ago when we were ready to install it.  The foam flooring comes in puzzle pieces, and as always, the boys were eager to help their dad install it.

It took McDaddy and his assistants approximately six hours to install the foam flooring and this is a pretty big room.

This is the before:

And, THIS is the after:

It looks like wood flooring, but it is actually foam. (Oh, and I have no idea why the striped wallpaper looks psychedelic.) It feels like you are walking on a sponge.

This picture was taken just before the floor was finished in front of the closet door.

To install a foam floor, you just measure and put the pieces together like a puzzle.

Just look at this laundry area.

Y’all, I swear I hear The Hallelujah Chorus every time I step into this room. I really wish I would’ve taken a picture of this room before we started any of the work. (I probably have a picture somewhere but I can’t find it. You should trust me when I tell you that it was a hot, cluttered mess.)

Another plus of this nice, big room with a foam floor is that our boys use it as a basketball court.

Thanks to Pinterest (I’m sure McDaddy just rolled his eyes!) I discovered a great tip for metal / wire shelving. I went to Lowe’s and purchased eight of these adhesive tiles. I removed the backing and attached them to the bottom shelf. Six of the tiles fit perfectly on this bottom shelf.

Cue the violins.

I love, love, love this new room and I appreciate all the work that McDaddy and MyDaddy did to make it beautiful!

For more great mudroom ideas, visit my Pinterest Board “Designing My Mudroom.”

Tip Junkie Handmade Projects

Designing My Mudroom

For more than a year, McDaddy and I have been making plans to turn our fifth bedroom into a mudroom. The room is off of the garage, but when we moved into our home, there was no door connecting the room to the garage because apparently the people who owned the house before us were crazy people who didn’t feel a need for the garage to be accessible from inside the house.

It took about fourteen minutes after closing on our home for McDaddy to decide that the first project up in here would be to cut a hole in the basement wall and put a door in.

And that’s precisely what he did.

So, the fifth bedroom – as it was listed on the house description – became a fifth bedroom with garage access. In addition to the room being more useful (because now McDaddy could get to the basement bathroom from the garage) the room became a catch-all because aside from walking through the room from the garage, we rarely spent any amount time in there.

Then, I started spending time on Pinterest.

And I saw all these beautiful mudrooms.

And the proverbial wheels started turning.

And like I do every time I get a wild hair up my you-know-what I began my mudroom campaign talking to McDaddy about turning the big, handy room off of the garage into a mudroom.

I started a Pinterest board called Designing My Mudroom and I started pinning like a crazy person.

Have I mentioned how much I love Pinterest?

Soon after that, I asked my dad if it would be possible to build a wall-unit and I showed him several pictures of units I pinned to my DMM Board, and explained how I’d like more shelves because OH MY WORD WE HAVE LOTS OF JUNK.

If I had any sense, I would have taken a picture of the drawing my dad made based on the description I gave him, because it was impressive. 

Soon after deciding to remodel the room, we started to shop for flooring. We settled on wood-grain foam flooring, and ordered it soon after that. That flooring is in boxes in our basement and I can’t tell you how excited I am to get the floor installed. But that’s another story for another day.


My dad’s friend, Frank has a workshop. The two of them spent several days working to get the wood cut and prepared.


And you can imagine my excitement as I watched the wall unit starting to come together.

That’s Frank on the left and my Daddy on the right.

And here’s my daddy attaching the hooks that will eventually hold our jackets. (HI DAD!)


Do you see all that fancy chair rail on top of the unit?

That was all my dad. I assumed that it would just be a flat board on top because it is so close to the ceiling. I never dreamed he would make it so fancy, but OH MY HEAVENLY DAY, I LOVE IT!

Nor did I have any idea that he and Frank would make the shelves on the sides adjustable, BUT SWEET HALLELUJAH I LOVE OPTIONS!

You can imagine my excitement when I walked into the room to see this.

I plan to use scrapbook stickers to put our names on each of our shoe bins. Additionally, I have asked my friend Jill to make a denim cushion for the area just above the shoe bins. And as bad as I straight-up HATE to wait, I. MUST. WAIT. because Jill is busy making a Halloween costume for her daughter.

And speaking of WAITING.

I won’t be waiting long before telling McDaddy to GET THESE FRIGGIN’ JEEP TIRES OUT OF THE ROOM, so we can clear out the room and get the new flooring down.

I’ll share the pictures just as soon as we get the floor done.

Stay tuned….

Decorating For Fall

It’s hard to welcome Fall with open arms when it’s 90-some degrees every other day. I am waiting patiently to cook up a crock-pot of chili or a big ol bucket of vegetable soup on a cold, crisp day.

Although I’ve been burning Pumpkin Cupcake and Pumpkin Pecan Waffle candles for more than a month, it has taken me a little longer to get all of my fall décor in order. I have moved this stuff around for weeks (because I am an indecisive crazy person) but as of today, I think I’ve got it all where I want it.

I am most excited about my front porch.

though I have no idea what is up with my front door. (Shadows maybe?) Let the record reflect that I have kept the mum alive for an entire week

I study Pinterest to get porch ideas but mine never quite turns out like anything I see on there.

I picked up this cute little bench at a primitive shop earlier this week.

The lady at the shop suggested I coat the bench with polyurethane to protect it from the elements.

I plan to do that this weekend.

This guy hangs out on the other side of the door.

And here’s a close-up of my front door (and also one of my favorite fall décor pieces).

Unfortunately I forgot about this little fella when I repainted my front door. Leave it to me to paint my door the same color as his shirt. Kinda makes me think I should have left it sage green.

Have I mentioned that I just love fall?

Moving inside, my dining-room table is plain and simple. In my opinion, you can never go wrong with Longaberger.

I just love it!

Our great room includes our living room, dining room and kitchen. The living room portion is all decked out for fall. The basket shown in the middle of the table is a Longaberger cake basket. I purchased the pumpkin lid during a trip to Dresden a couple of years ago. It makes me smile. (They also had a snowman lid which I did not buy. That does NOT make me smile because every year when I get the pumpkin lid out for fall, I think about the snowman one too!)

I picked up the smaller items at Big Lots and Crafts 2000.

Our living room features a large bay window. I decorate it for every season.

I picked up the sunflower bowl at Big Lots one day last week. They have a really nice line of fall décor and I just love it! (I typically place assorted size boxes in the window and then throw a table-cloth or sheet on top of the boxes.) The wooden picture on the right is actually one of our church bulletins decoupaged onto a wooden square. I love that one of the ladies from our church taught us how to do that at a ladies retreat a few years back.

The coffee table falls victim to movement pretty frequently because the boys sometimes sit on the table when they play the Wii, or use the table for a race track for their cars. (I am a firm believer that scratches only add to the personality of a coffee table and there will come a day when I will look back on the table and long for another CARS race around its perimeter.)

I’ve been toying with the idea of moving these three glass cylinders to the coffee table. The only problem is that they are tall and I feel like they distract from the television which sits directly in front of the coffee table.

I love this little end table display (but I HATE candy corn!)

And if you haven’t tried a pumpkin candle from Bath and Body, I suggest you get your tail end over there right now! (In the interest of full disclosure, I am not being compensated to say anything about B&B candles. It just so happens they are my favorite candles and they smell yummy!)

That’s fall around here, y’all!

Just Some More Of My Crazy

It is Tuesday evening and I am watching Dance Moms. It is that time of the month and I would knock a joker flat-out right now for a chocolate cake donut connection donut. Folks, 39-year-old hormones do not play. Especially when they’ve been on a  five-week biggest loser quest.

Phew. It feels good to get that off of my chest.

And speaking of donuts, I am hungry.

I am also cold.

In fact, I have been cold for weeks.

It probably doesn’t help that its a whopping 27 degrees here. I’m cold outside. I’m cold inside. No matter what I do, I can’t really get warm and stay warm. McDaddy turned up the heat this past weekend, but I think the thermostat is on strike because it sits out in the weather and if I had to sit out in that weather, I’d just give up, too!

It’s so cold, that McDaddy found two dead mice (2 DEAD MICE) in a trashcan in the closet where our hot water tank is. The stupid suckers came in here to get warm and froze to death in a trashcan.  Luckily, McDaddy disposed of the bodies before I even knew they were here in the house, but don’t think I don’t look in that trashcan every single time I walk past that room in the basement now. McDaddy said they simply stopped by to see their cousins – Duke and Apolo (our hamsters) but we won’t even go there.

And speaking of two DEAD MICE, I am ready to MOVE!

Because if my math is correct (and it probably isn’t!) and provided that the very first mouse we ever caught in a trap around here was the actual mouse involved in the standoff, that brings the total mouse count over the course of three years in this house to FIVE. And the last four have been caught over the course of the last three weeks.

So… We’re looking for a 4-bedroom house, free of mice, with a level driveway, on a level road, that is not in a flood plain, that is free of mice, and has a large garage. Actually, a 2-car garage would suit me just fine, but McDaddy is of the opinion that you can never have too many garages. Or vehicles for that matter.

I am looking forward to spring. And so are my flip-flops.

And did I mention, I was hungry?

The only thing I have to look forward to eating this evening is the raw honey/Ceylon cinnamon cocktail I’ll have just before I go to bed.

I have several friends who are using this concoction for weight loss, but stupid me used the wrong cinnamon the entire first week, and well, after a little research, I learned that did more harm than good. I’ll be sure to let you know if it’s effective.

One thing I can tell you is that raw honey stinks and tastes nasty. At first, I was eating both the honey and cinnamon straight off the spoon while holding my nose. On several occasions, I gagged and came ever so close to puking before talking the little hangy-down thing in my throat into hanging on just a second longer while I swallowed that mess. It reminded me of Fear Factor and what those people must have felt like when they were challenged to eat a Madagascar hissing cockroach. Though, I’m sure this raw honey with its pieces of bee wings and pollen is much worse. McDaddy downs it without the first bit of trouble, but after 20 years of my cooking, I guess maybe raw honey isn’t so bad after all.

Yes, you read that right. McDaddy is taking the concoction too, which surprises me because he typically sings “The Witch Doctor Song” anytime I get the bright idea to try something at home that might be better treated by a real, living, breathing, Doctor.

Like when I told him I was going to let my friend Jessica do ear candling on me.

He had a heyday with that one (and still reminds me of it from time to time), but if he had eczema of the inner ear like I do, he’d try anything once. I would never want you to think I was peddling medical advice around here (though I’ve been known to self-diagnose myself a time or ten), so before you try the ear candling, you should know that most of the research regarding ear candles, well, just read this….

Ear candling, also called ear coning or thermal-auricular therapy, is an alternative medicine practice claimed to improve general health and well-being by lighting one end of a hollow candle and placing the other end in the ear canal. Medical research has shown that the practice is both dangerous and ineffective and does not help remove earwax or so-called toxins.


I guess me and my PMS will go to bed, where hopefully I will dream of eating donuts on a beach and not a pair of dead mice in my basement trash-can.

You’re welcome.

You Capture – The Letter L

It’s another one of those weeks where I’m living by a list, which translates into I’M SLAMMED THIS WEEK.

The PTA is kicking off a cookie-dough fundraiser today. The book-fair is this week. There are popcorn popping duties on Thursday. The laundry overfloweth. I am hoping to travel with McDaddy next week on business, which requires me to pack a bag or twelve, plus I must write out daily instructions for my dad who will be staying here with the kids. AND on top of all of that, I’m preparing the boys’ clothes for a consignment sale that will happen the day we get back which means I must have them ready before we leave so that my dad can drop them off while we’re gone.

Clearly, I have lost my mind.

In between all of that stuff, I’ve been wandering aimlessly around the house looking for items that begin with the letter “L” for this week’s You Capture challenge.

I made the mistake of mentioning the challenge to Stevie and he began calling out “L” words like, Luke Skywalker, lamp, laptop, Lightning McQueen and loft.

He meant business.

I smiled and then I took a picture of our loft.

And then I headed back to his room because he has an impressive collection of lego creations on his dresser which drives me insane if I’m being honest.

As I headed out of Stevie’s room, McDaddy stopped me in the hallway and asked what I was taking pictures of. I explained the challenge for this week – the letter “L” – and he immediately chimed in with, l-o—v—e. I grabbed him around the neck and snapped a picture of us because I like taking pictures of myself. After seeing the picture, I opted not to display the picture here in this post because for some unknown reason, the camera focused on a huge zit on my cheek and it is nine kinds of scary. The fact that McDaddy tried to lick my cheek in the picture didn’t help matters. You know, because “L” is for lick.

I mentioned I wouldn’t be using that particular picture opting for this one instead.

The ladder that leads to our loft.

And because my life is not nearly exciting enough, I wrapped my camera around my wrist and started up the ladder to get a picture of our Living room

because HEY LOOK! it’s my lucky chair, new curtains, and a bright blue door,

AND my kitchen counter is clear of debris. QUICK, take a picture!

But no post of things beginning with the letter “L” would be complete without a picture of at least one beloved Longabeger basket,

Or two.

Not to mention, one LOUD, LOVELY, Saturn Sky.

Y’all knew I’d work that in, right?

Beauty and The Beast

The weather guy, in his infinate wisdom has predicted that we will get between two and six inches of snow by Friday morning.

Two. And six.

That’s quite a difference, but if I’m being honest, the two might as well be six when it comes to my driving in it, because I am a chicken.

The good news is with that much snow expected, there is a really good chance that we will get to sleep in tomorrow morning. I am expecting a phone call from the school board at any minute.

For the past month 97% of the conversations in our little town have centered around two topics.

  • How much snow we received this time around.
  • How much snow we can expect this time around.

When McDaddy is home it makes no difference how much snow we get because he is crazy and actually enjoys risking life and limb to slip and slide drive on snowy, icy roads. He has a  job that requires lots of travel, so when he is away I am constantly checking the weather channel on my phone and praying to the Lord above that the storm will pass over and not dump its wad over top of my house because as I’ve mentioned before we live on a big honkin’ hill.

In fact, as I write this post the snow is falling steadily and McDaddy is debating whether or not there is somewhere he needs to go at 11:00 PM just so he can go out and play in the snow. 

Crazy, I tell you.

Here’s a view of the hill that we must drive up (and coincidentally down) to get to and from our house. I shot this from our driveway one day last week. As you can see it is a crazy steep “S” curve.

I told you, it was a huge hill.

As you might imagine, I have suffered many a panic attack attempting to get up or down the hill.

Just last Friday we were hit with yet another storm. McDaddy was working out of town and it was a snow day for our school district. As luck with have, Stevie’s eight-year well visit was scheduled for that afternoon. Unless I wanted to reschedule his appointment for sometime in July, I had no choice but to sweep and shovel the driveway if my minivan stood any chance whatsoever of making it up the driveway.

I’ll give you a few seconds to process that.

I wrestled my boots on, bundled myself up, grabbed my iPhone (in case I suffered some sort of an emergency! – don’t laugh if you know me, you know it’s totally possible!) AND, I grabbed the camera because that’s what I do when I’m preparing to do manual labor that requires me to work up a sweat.

When I walked outside to assess the situation, I figured I’d be there half the day clearing the snow on that driveway.

Here is our darn driveway, as it looked from the garage.

And here was our front porch:

Nothing says ‘Welcome’ quite like five inches of snow on the front steps.

And this is a shot of me before the sweat started to roll.

And believe me, the sweat? It did roll!

It rolled, because I was using this sucker:

Look at all that friggin’ snow. I’m telling you, it makes me cringe just looking at it.

Just before the heart attack A mere thirty-minutes later, the driveway looked like this:

And my steps screamed, “Y’all come!”

And I was a sweatin’ fool who had ditched her scarf and swiped the sweat from her brow.

Dramatic, yes, I know.

And then, I did what any crazy person does,

I took pictures of myself.

When McDaddy called to ask about my day, I inquired about the possibility of purchasing a snow-blade for his heap, er, I mean Jeep, because the beast could clear our driveway in a hot minute.

Which is a whole-heck-of-a lot quicker than it took the beauty to clear it.

To which he replied, “The Jeep doesn’t need the driveway cleared.”

And that’s how we roll around here, folks.

The beauty doing all the work, and the beast having all the fun.

Have a great weekend internets!

Stuff and Things

It’s been a hectic week around here at the McResidence but I won’t go into all that because I am not one to whine or complain.


Some days the blog fodder rolls right off of my fingertips and other days, I sit here on the big, blue, bloggy couch watching some sort of reality television, craving chocolate thinking what to write about.

Tonight, the blog fodder is filling my head, so I hope you’ll excuse while I empty the contents of my brain. It is likely I will type without any sort of order. In other words, you won’t see much change from my everyday blogging. 

1. It’s Santa’s workshop week at Stevie’s school. For some reason things are going much smoother than last year. This is my second year heading up the rob-shop program and as is always the case, I’ve learned a few things in the process.

2. I had a PTA meeting this evening which probably isn’t noteworthy except that, I HAD TO SPEAK INTO A MICROPHONE. IN FRONT OF A LARGE AUDIENCE. ON A STAGE. Don’t get me wrong, I can talk with the best of them. I hate speaking in front of a large audience. I hate it even more if there are steps I have to maneuver to get on the stage because let’s just face it, I am the biggest klutz I know and the only thing worse than tripping on steps is tripping on steps in front of hundreds of people. About five minutes before the meeting started I seriously thought I was having a panic attack. I had heart palpitations and I was uneasy about making a ‘miscue’ as my granny would say. Thankfully I only had a few short announcements before turning the microphone over to the Principal. The ‘light refreshments’ we served were a hit unless you count the fact that we had six half-gallons of eggnog left over and after tasting it I understood why.

3. While Alex was at preschool this morning I made a mad dash through Kohl’s, the AT&T store, and the dollar store. Let me just go on record and say right now that Kohl’s is a great place to do some serious Christmas shopping. Most of the store was discounted and in addition to that I got some Kohl’s cash which is almost like real cash except it expires. I put an alert into my iPhone to remind me to use it before I lose it because if there’s anything I hate it’s finding out my Kohl’s cash has expired.

4. McDaddy was out of town on business this week and one of the times he called me, he asked if Fed-ex had delivered a package. I told him in fact they had delivered two packages and he then asked me to open the package addressed to him to find out if it was the right item.


I squealed with delight when I saw this.

Come to mama.

She is sleek. She is beautiful. She is bright. And she is mine!

Happy Birthday to me!

5. I have 317 gifts to wrap. I enjoy wrapping gifts unless I have 317 gifts in my wrapping queue. I’d like to think I’ll get caught up on my wrapping this weekend but I won’t hold my breath because we have two birthdays to celebrate, two dinners, a basketball game, a birthday party at our house, a baby dedication, and a basketball practice.

But I’m not whining.

Or complaining.

Because I don’t do either of those.

 And because I just got the new iPhone.

Have a great weekend y’all! If I find time in between our busy schedule I’ll be posting about my new sweeper (that really sucks by the way!) and about my sweet boy who will turn eight on Sunday.

A Little Sit-uation

If you’re a regular visitor ’round these parts, you know that I spent about four weeks of my life shopping for living room furniture. I shopped frantically and often. I went a little crazier crazy.

We purchased our previous furniture immediately after moving into our home eight years ago. When I first saw it on the showroom floor, it jumped out at me and I loved it from that very first second. It was country and comfortable wrapped in one big fluffy package. It saw us through two babies, four weeks of bed-rest, Stevie falling off of it and passing out, lots of puke/poop episodes, and it has served as a bed for Stevie as he often wakes up to find himself sleeping on it, and I couldn’t tell you the number of 3 am nursing sessions that included me watching reruns of “The Cosby Show.” You could say that me and this couch has been through a lot.

Please say hello to our old couch.

It was an exciting day in our neighborhood because lookie here…

Two really nice fellas delivered our new furniture today.

Feast your eyes on this beauty.

 It’s sapphire blue and it all reclines. And, I should tell you that the pillows that you see are the pillows from our old couch. Our new pillows will match my beautiful country rocker which is not here yet.

Here’s the view from my big, blue, bloggychair.

I am tickled and it works for me!

I’ll be even more thrilled  when my country rocker makes its way to our doorstep to replace my big, blue, bloggy chair.

Visit THAT family for more Works For Me Wednesday posts.