A clutter free January, starting with the kitchen! Out with the clutter and in with some Danish hygge! Make it cosy! I’m joining Dawn from the Minimal Mom in her Clutter Free January project – make sure to check out the playlist (more videos will be added as they are published). And stay tuned for my very first giveaway…
Thank you for all your wonderful suggestions on YouTube and Instagram for things we can focus on in Flylady zone 2 (the kitchen) for shopping, self-care and working in the garden! 😄 I shall keep adding to the list as more ideas come in…
Here’s my “self-preservation” bingo card for this week. You can click the photo, save and print. Or if you’d like to customise, here’s a link
Homemade face mask, lip or hand scrub, bath salts/bombs, homemade foot cream. Use herbs or flowers from your garden or pantry items (honey, sugar exfoliating scrub, olive oil egg yolk hair treatment, vanilla bath salts).
Keep a tube of hand cream by the sink.
Additional hand-care with some lotion or a mini-manicure.Make one day this week a “detox” day, with juicing and relaxation.
Search online for a new recipe to try, or reread a favourite cookbook.
Write down your favourite family recipe and make a copy for your children.
Have a go at that recipe you saved and never got round to.
Try making a new healthy snack, biscuit or cake.
Prepare a ‘new’ or ‘special’ snack to enjoy later on with a cup of tea!
Tidy and/or discard old recipes.
Tweak your diet, research healthier eating ideas and add one to your menu plan this week.
Add some fresh mint or a slice of lemon to your water.
Make homemade chocolates, truffles or fudge (for Zone 4 stash 😊).
Sit outside with your morning tea or coffee and listen to the birds.
Candlelight dinner with your best china, alone or with your significant other, on the balcony or in your garden.
Put together a pamper snack basket for the week, something special each day to enjoy.
Add your favourite meal to this week’s menu plan.
Sit at the dinner table, add candles, background music, serviettes, eat outside weather-permitting.
Enjoy the light in the kitchen for reading or doing a crossword.
Try a new type of tea or coffee or savour a cup of your favourite brew. Use the one you have been saving “for a special occasion”.
Indulge yourself and enjoy your favourite dessert, or a new ice-cream flavour.
Use one of your china teacups/saucers that you only keep for guests, or drink water/juice from a crystal wine glass.
Put together different salads, trying new combinations of veggies and fruits you’ve never tried, use a variety of lettuces and greens.
Add something which makes you smile while you’re cooking/doing the dishes: a bloom from the garden, a pot plant, a candle, a photo frame.
Make paper flowers to put on your windowsill or table.
Take a couple of pieces of the “good china” you save for special occasions out and have lunch or a snack, a cup of tea. Take a photo and invite a friend to do the same for a “separate but together” teatime, or eat “together” via FaceTime or Skype.
Hang a beautiful crystal in the window to make sparkles and rainbows.
Attach a perspex bird feeder to the kitchen window. You can see our one here…
Sow vegetable or herb seeds, plant up tender vegetables in a greenhouse, sow cress or micro seeds for quick fresh greens.
Watch the birds at the feeder.
Read outside in the garden, make a reading spot for yourself.
Use a special cuticle and hand cream after you’ve been working outside.
Sit outside and “just be”.
Rub your hands in the thyme, lavender, basil or mint bush.
Prepare the area for the vegetable garden.
Clean and check outside furniture.
Clean/prepare the barbecue and implements. Gas/charcoal.
Wipe down the parasol.
Take care of fruit trees or bushes. Swap excess garden produce with friends or neighbours.
Light a small bonfire.
Have a go at growing herbs in containers or recycled tin cans or plastic pot.
I’ve had a bit of an ‘off’ day. Felt restless. Spilt my morning cup of chai. Spilt candle wax all over my hands. Lost one of my favourite new earrings on my way home from my piano lesson… So I did the only thing I knew…I shined my sink! (Fellow Flylady afficionados will understand me.) And right now – 6.39pm – I’m in the kitchen, feeling gooooood! Listening to Unga Bunga (a Danish ‘get ready to go clubbing’ radio show) and looking at one of the most beautiful sights I know – the light on the end of my kitchen tap. Behold. And weep! ;D
Hope you have a fabulous Friday and a wonderful weekend! 🙂
12 weeks. 12 weeks that actually flew by (thank you again, Flylady).
What now? Well, I’ relearning to cook in the new kitchen. Still finding out how all these new (and wonderful) kitchen appliances work. Just the other day I discovered that the hob (induction) has 5 rings that have seperate timers on them… So I can cook pasta for, say, 12 minutes, boil broccoli for 4 minutes, gently heat sauce for 3 minutes – and they switch themselves off automatically. How cool is that? 😉 And I haven’t even got to the chapter about the automatic temperature sensor…the hob came with special barcode stickers that you stick on the sides of your saucepans and it automatically cooks your steak to perfection. Apparently.
But what now, now? I need to find a new topic for my Monday posts. The blog at the moment looks like this:
Tuesday – crafts, usually 15 minute ones 😉
Wednesday – my life, often Denmark related
Thursday – menu planning
Friday – things I like
Saturday – normally a recipe
Sunday – Christmas planning
I’m thinking it’s been a while (too long) since I sat in my little BlogTalkRadio studio… My idea at the moment is to write a post Monday morning and follow it up in the afternoon (Danish time) with a radio show. “Café Copenhagen”. A chance for Flybabies to get together for a chinwag or a good old pamper session – for those magic 15 minutes! As Emma says, we shall see… 🙂
So here we are again, another Monday, another day of the kitchen remodel. But it’s all good – just need the electricians to come and finish off a couple of jobs tomorrow and Wednesday and then we’re done! 🙂
All in all, I can’t believe how stress-free the whole remodel thing has been. Unless you start counting the number of gin bottles I have put in the recycling bag… (Not kidding.) But truth to tell, we have not only survived this remodel, we have flown through it. Yep, it’s all thanks to the Flylady. The (ongoing) decluttering process. Morning routine. Before bed routine. Menu planning. Pampering. WHB. And, especially for me, my timer and those magic 15 minutes.
Seriously, if you haven’t already checked out the Flylady, please go and do it now. It’s free. And it all starts with…a shiny sink 🙂
The kitchen is R.E.A.D.Y and we are open for business! Yay! Double yay! 🙂
After 9 weeks of washing dishes without a sink I’ve been allowed to come out of my camp kitchen in the basement and back up to the ground floor and into the light… Or semi-light, I should say, because we don’t have any spotlights working at the moment. Fault in the electricity cables… No wall lights or floor heating either 🙁 But not to worry, the electricians are here (Monday morning) and think they have located the cable in question. [slaps thigh and shouts ‘hooray’ in good old pantomime style]
I was allowed to run around naked in access to the kitchen last Wednesday night. DH was working late and DD7 was at a classmate’s house for play/dinner club. DS9 and I were supposed to be going out for sushi but we got a takeaway instead and christened our new dining area 🙂 The whole idea with the new kitchen was to give us space to sit and eat – something that lacked in the old kitchen.
To be perfectly honest, DS9 was actually rather relieved that we weren’t going to sit in the sushi restaurant where the drive-by shooting took place… Anyway, here we are, pleased as Punch…and the sushi was magnificent as always!
There were no builders/electricians/plasterers/painters here last Thursday or Friday. Which suited me down to the ground because I wanted to move my stuff back in there and just enjoy my new shiny sink. Complete with pull-out hose and light on the end of the tap:
Have to admit, aside from being very fancy, the tap light seems to have hidden telekinetic powers and makes young children want to help…
I’ve posted a new video of the kitchen on youtube so you can compare the new to the old. Or maybe you want to see how it looked, halfway through the remodel? Hope you enjoy. And there are plenty of new pictures over at picasa.
And what now? Well, we’ve already done a lot of baking in the new oven. DKs are enjoying the new fridge/freezer immensely judging by the amounts of cold water and ice they are consuming. I still need to figure out the new hob (which can apparently fry a perfect steak all by itself with no adult supervision) but the dishwasher works just fine and even shines a little red light on the floor, so I know that it’s running. Technology. Gotta love it!
Tune in next Monday. When we’re – hopefully – in the home straight. Who knows, the two of us might even have a chance to be alone..? 😉
OK, OK, so I shouldn’t have been so cocky last week and told you that things were going swimmingly with the new kitchen… Because on Tuesday the poor kitchen-fitter came down with a bad bout of the flu and was off ill for the rest of the week! 🙁
But – praise the Kitchen Gods – he is now fully recovered and arrived (along with the architect) at 8am this dreary, Monday morning – yay! They are working as fast as they can, and (fingers crossed, knock on wood, 7-9-13 as they say here in Denmark) we should be more or less back on schedule.
Tomorrow, Tuesday, the plumber is coming to connect the sink and fancy pancy American fridge. Yep, iced water, icecubes and crushed ice – did someone say frozen margaritas??
Wednesday it’s the electrician’s turn.
Thursday I think it’s the plasterer or the painter. Or maybe both 😉
So all in all it’s going to be an(other) exciting week. I promise to take lots of photos of the work in progress and add them to my album over at Picasa.
See you next Monday with a progress report and – who knows – maybe even a shiny sink? 🙂
The best thing about a new kitchen when you’re a child?
Today’s post is a bit of a cheat because there is no news as such on the kitchen remodel – aside from the fact that things are going swimmingly and the painter is now hard at work – because we have ‘escaped’ to Edinburgh for a few days! 🙂 It’s the school’s autumn week and we have taken the chance to go and visit my Mum and Dad in Scotland – hurray! Got here this morning and it has been a delight to wash up dishes in a normal sink… [insert a very long sigh]
DH couldn’t take time off but is making sure things go as planned back at the ranch. And, if all goes well, when we return to Copenhagen on Friday, we may even have doors and windows – yeehaw!
Promise there’ll be a proper update (and more photos…) on the kitchen next Monday. Until then, I’m putting my feet up and enjoying Mum’s cooking! 😉
Builders were here this morning at 7am – as they are every day – and the kitchen remodel charges on at a lightning pace. There are a bunch of them here today:
2 brickies – who are laying floor tiles on top of the cement floor they made earlier, which covers the electric floor heating ‘net’ put down by the electrician, which was laid on top of another layer of cement made by the brickies, which covered metal runners, which were placed on the old wooden joints from 1933…
1 joiner – removing the doors and surrounds so the brickies can lay the tiles right up to the doors
1 gaffer (big boss) who comes to check in on things every day
1 electrician who is finishing off some wall sockets, then the brickies can finish preparing the walls
Work on the leaky bathroom on the 1st floor has finished, so we’re now back in business with that. So no more mess on the 1st floor. Thank goodness.
The plumber and electrician are also finished putting cables/pipes through our hall cupboard. So yesterday we were able to replace all the coats, schoolbags, basket 1 (bike helmets + bike keys/lights), basket 2 (umbrellas) and basket 3 (old grocery bags), together with the emergency torches and fire extinguisher 🙂
I’m still updating the Picasa web album on a daily basis. Click here if you’re interested in photos. And here for videos.
And as it’s Monday – which is WHB day if you live in a Flylady world – my final job was to change my hoover bag and give it some TLC. So I’m ready for whatever (dust) this kitchen remodel can throw at me 😉
Feels quite funny to be typing ‘week 4’ because it seems like just yesterday we started work on the kitchen remodel. And yet I’ve almost forgotten what it was like in the old kitchen…thank goodness I put that video on youtube! 😉
I’m flying along in my camp kitchen in the basement. OK so it’s not the brightest or biggest of places (need to get an extra lamp from Ikea – I.crave.light) but it’s working fine. Biggest help has been menu planning. Which is kind of funny because that, along with paper clutter, has always been my achiles heel. Hoping it will last beyond the remodel and be my latest, new Flylady habit. I do my online grocery shop and post the menu here on the blog every Thursday. Keeps me accountable. And (do I really need to say this?) the cost of my food bill is going down and I’m trying out more and more new dishes. We even had Eve’s Pudding for dessert last night – something I haven’t had since I made it with my Mum back in Scotland over 25 years ago 🙂
On the kitchen front? We now have a cement floor to walk on! 🙂 And the builders continue to work like trojans. A couple of small hiccups, but we’re on schedule. They did, however, find a leak from the bathroom on the first floor… Work starts there tomorrow morning – so no more baths or showers there until probably the weekend. But, hey, we’ve still got the loo, and a loo on the ground floor, and a makeshift shower in the basement (where I have my camp kitchen), so it could be worse, right?!
The major addition to the kitchen this week will be the new, flat ceiling. (At the moment there are two different ceiling heights, and one of them is sloping.) In Denmark there is a tradition of having a rejsegilde (small party or reception) for the builders and all those involved when the roof of a new house goes on. They put a little flag at the highest point on the roof together with some wreaths. Then serve unlimited amounts of Danish frankfurter sausages, cola and beer! 😉 I’m planning to do the same when our kitchen ceiling is finished… So that’s all for today – I’m off to add sausages and Carlsberg to my shopping list. See you next Monday! 🙂
Three weeks into our kitchen remodel and things are chugging along nicely. A few minor setbacks, lots of loose ends, but lots of progress.
Got a bit disheartened with the constant layer of dust which seeps out of the kitchen and up to the bedrooms on the first floor, all the rooms on the main floor and down to the office/laundry/workshop in the basement… But a quick feather dust followed by 10 minutes with the hoover and another 10 with a mop gets us back to ‘normal’.
The Flylady mantra of ‘you can do anything for 15 minutes’ has been my saving grace. Because for me, the hardest part is getting started and fighting the inner princess that says ‘poor old me, waaaaa, I don’t want to do this and I don’t have the time’! 🙂
The builders arrive at 7am and I try to do the clean up as soon as they leave for the day – which can be anytime between 3pm and 6pm. If I’m honest, the ‘dust’ situation is getting better. They’re finished all the demolishing work and are building things up again. The skip which contained the old kitchen has been towed away, so there isn’t much to see in the front garden.
Though now part of the lawn in the back garden is covered with boards/cement mixers/sand etc. In my pre-Flylady days I would have given up on the garden completely (‘why should I bother when part of it is such a mess?’) but this time I’m out there weeding/pruning for 15 minutes a day and mowing where I can. Don’t think our garden has ever looked this good in the 9 years that we’ve been here 🙂
One strange thing about this whole business is that from time to time I ‘miss’ the old kitchen. For example, if I’m prepping dinner in our camp kitchen in the basement, I have an urge to look in an old kitchen cupboard. Which I can’t – for obvious reasons! I suppose I spend so much time in the kitchen, it’s like losing a limb! LOL Thankfully I had the forethought to take lots of pictures for the quintessential ‘before & after’ album.
From now on my Monday musings will be dedicated to progress on our new kitchen. Today, of course, I’ll mainly be concentrating on the the lack thereof… 😉
This kitchen remodel is going to be a true test of my Flylady routines. Been listening to Marla a.k.a. The Flylady on http://blogtalkradio.com/ (archive available) and been reading her e-mails for years (you can subscribe for free at http://flylady.net/), so a lot of good things have sunk in 🙂
The main thing I have learned along the way — and which has helped me through other remodels of the house, family bereavements, and general taking-what-life-throws-at-you — is to keep going! As long as you keep following your routines as best you can, you’ll be making progress. Gives you something to cling to, or hang on to for dear life! 😉
For instance…last night I had a lovely bubble bath complete with candles, glass of wine, chocolates and a book. Went to bed super early and got up a bit earlier this morning, so I could get the DKs to school 5 minutes earlier than usual. Had already set out the breakfast things last night, after dinner, because our makeshift kitchen is in the basement, and it’ll take the DKs a few days to get used to the new setup 🙂
The first of the builders (electrician) turned up at 8am. He set to work. I did too. Mondays are the day I do my cleaning or WHB (see earlier post for description). I just carried on regardless, though I, of course, had to stop from time to time to help move appliances and discuss some practical stuff. The boss of the firm also popped in, and the plumber also arrived to disconnect water and gas connections. But I just carried on the best I could and tried not to get sidetracked. Heck, I even managed to put the minced beef I managed to brown (at 7.55am, just after I took the DKs to school) in the crockpot together with a jar of good tomato sauce, so dinner is already under control 🙂
What would I have been like today without Flylady? Hmm, first of all, I would have been very cranky (having still been up after midnight, moving stuff down to the basement), irritated over the mess in the house (yet sitting on my backside doing nothing), racking my brains on where to take the family out for dinner (never mind what I was going to put in the DKs lunchboxes the next day), completely overwhelmed, would forget to eat lunch, or anything for that matter, and (as I said to Candace on twitter yesterday) probably cowering in a corner with a bottle of blue gin! 😉
Anyway, builders have finished for the day, I’ve just had my afternoon nap, been drinking my water and eating regular meals today (from my ‘field kitchen’) and I’ve just enjoyed a brownie (Krista’s recipe) which we had the forethought to bake yesterday – the last chance we had to use our big oven…
So things aren’t perfect. But they’re pretty darn good!
Here we are, the first day in September and I made it. Have written a blogpost every day for the last month and yes – have thoroughly enjoyed it! I can see, this far down the blogging road, that my page isn’t very high tech and needs a bit of organising and pruning but, in true Flylady style, I will try not to get bogged down in the details and just concentrate on writing what comes to mind and especially to heart.
There have been a couple of posts about life in Denmark (more of those in the pipeline), a few about me and the family, and rather a lot of recipes and food talk. Which doesn’t really surprise me at all because I ‘heart’ food and it was Emma (@orangeflowers on http://twitter.com/) who was on at me to start a food blog that got this whole thing rolling.
Still not sure where this blog is all leading. Will start posting some craft ideas (have a big box full of ‘idea’s I had for a book [ha]), more stuff on my life with Flylady and, of course, Christmas planning is also starting this week (yay!).
I got a phone call an hour ago from our builders to say that they were coming to start demolishing our current kitchen bright and early Monday morning. They will be here for 5-6 weeks knocking down walls, putting in windows, laying new floors, lowering ceilings, moving water and electricity and whatever else our swanky, new kitchen requires. We won’t have access to that room until 1 November. So be prepared for lots of blogposts about rice cookers, crockpots and one-pot cooking 😉