Six Ways To Simplify

Simplify Your Life Week

It's easy to fall into a lifestyle of too fast, too much, too busy. The first week of August is Simplify Your Life Week and it's a great time to make a commitment to simplify, organize, and prioritize. Here are six ideas to get you started in your journey to peaceful simplicity:

1. Simplify Your Meals
Make one crockpot meal this week. Simple foods, simple recipes, cooked simply - toss some ingredients into the crockpot in the morning and your dinner is ready when you get home from work.

2. Simplify Your Facebook Friends
Clean up your Facebook friends list and free up some time. Do you really need to read 816 daily updates?

3. Simplify Your Banking
Use cash for purchases instead of the debit card. Keep some cash out when you deposit your paycheck, or make just one trip to the ATM. You'll have fewer receipts and spend less time trying to balance your checkbook.

4. Simplify Your TV Viewing
Eliminate one show from your viewing schedule. Spend that time with loved ones or going for a walk. Even better - spend that time going for a walk with loved ones!

5. Simplify Your To-Do List
Do a task on your To-Do List that you've been putting off doing. It will finally be finished, and you can check it off your list.

6. Simplify Your Home
Grab a bag and go through your home gathering things you don't need, use, wear or want and you can get rid of excess clutter a little at the time. If you end up with a bag of nice things, drop them off at a local thrift shop.

Boot Scrubbers

Boot scrubbers. Who even knew there was such a thing? I have got to get one!

I was working on my blog one day when an advertisement came up for "boot scrubbers" and I had to check it out. Since we aren't allowed to click on our own Adsense Ads, I went and did a search for the term and there it was - boot scrubbers. Boot scrubbers are little contraptions with brushes that a person (husband!) can run his boots through to clean off the dirt and mud.

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My husband is a heavy equipment operator and somedays when he comes home he is about three inches taller than normal because of all the mud on his boots he has collected from walking across a job site. He is usually pretty good to try to knock some of it off outside, but with thick tread on work boots, some of the mud and dirt always ends up in the house. He does take his boots off by the door, but once in a while, he will forget something after he has put his boots on in the morning and he takes off through the house leaving a mess in his wake. When I get up and head into the kitchen, bleary-eyed and barefoot, to get a cup of coffee - ouch! - hard mud chunks and pebbles and little dirt 'doobies' are everywhere. Sometimes it's so bad, I have to get the broom and sweep it up - and who wants to sweep before they have their first cup of coffee in the morning?

I'd never heard of boot scrubbers until I saw the ad. They are apparently sold in places like farm supply stores and places that sell tools and the like, but I think they should market them to women. Women still do the majority of the housework and boot scrubbers would certainly save on some cleaning! The ads should read something like - "Ladies, does your husband work in construction and bring home half the job site on his work boots? Does your significant other like to hike but brings home a large section of the forest floor on his hiking boots? Leave the dirt where it belongs -buy the new heavy-duty boot scrubber and make him leave his mess outside!"
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I may have to go on a search for other handy gadgets; there may be, out there somewhere, things to entice your man to take the trash out the first time you ask or something that may magically help him toss his dirty clothes into the hamper.

Hey, ya' never know.

Confused About Light Bulbs?

After our hoard of light bulbs has been extinguished, we will all be faced with the task of buying the new, energy efficient light bulbs. And the first thing we will notice, after the odd shapes, is that the bulbs aren't listed by wattage. Gone are the 100 watt bulbs, and the familiar 75 watt bulbs aren't far behind - they will be gone in January 2013. Now the bulbs have a label with the new-to-most-of-us term - "lumens."


Photo courtesy photos-public-domain.com

Lumens?

Simply put, "lumens" measure the brightness of the bulb and it's the new way to choose a light bulb. Below is a list of common wattage of the old light bulbs, and their close "lumens" equivalent -

40 Watt = 450 Lumens
60 Watt = 800 Lumens
75 Watt = 1100 Lumens
100 Watt = 1600 Lumens
150 Watt = 2600 Lumens

*Keep in mind that while the new light bulbs have labels on the packages that also list "wattage," the "wattage" on the label is how much energy is used by the light bulb!

Confused yet? But wait, there's more...

The light bulb labels also include information about "light appearance" which ranges from "warm" to "cool" listed as "K"; For example: a bulb might be listed as "2700k" on the scale. The "K" means the "temperature" of the bulb on the "Kelvin" scale. "Warm" on the Kelvin scale means the bulb gives off a more yellowish color, while "cool" on the Kelvin scale means the bulb gives off a more bluish color.

Choosing Light Appearance

According to the experts, if you are looking for a light bulb for the kitchen or laundry room, you would choose a "cool" bulb in the 4000k range. "Cool" light bulbs are better in areas where you will be doing some sort of task.

If you are looking for a light bulb to use in the living room, or a bedroom, you should choose a "warmer" bulb in the 2700k-3000k range. "Warm" light bulbs are better for areas where you relax!

Someday We Will Get Used To The New Light Bulbs...

and someday, if we mention 100 Watt light bulbs to the younger generation, they will look at us with the same confused look we get now when we mention "8-Track Tape Player."


Christmas in July?

Christmas seems to have come early this year! People are discussing it, there are Christmas shows on tv, the home shopping networks are advertising products for the holidays.
It's getting to me - I want Christmas and I want it now!

Need a little Christmas? Learn about the song Jingle Bells -

Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells...


A Semi-humorous look at why tools might make a good Christmas gift -

Looking for Gift Ideas? Why Not Tools?



Monday Motivation

Get up and get dressed even if you're not going out.

When you're home, whether you are a housewife, or unemployed, or for whatever reason,  it's easy to slip into a routine of hanging around the house in your pajamas and slippers. But pajamas and slippers are nighttime wear. How often have you seen articles about how to get to sleep at night? The experts always suggest a routine - like reading a chapter in a book, getting into pajamas, using the bed only for sleeping and intimacy. Pajamas and slippers tell you it's time to relax! Getting up, and getting dressed, changes your mode from nighttime relaxing to daytime moving.


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And don't forget to put on your shoes!

When I was working full-time I had to do household chores in the evening; but if I came home from work and took off my shoes, it was a signal to my mind and body that I was finished with work for the day and it was time to relax. Putting on shoes every morning put my mind into work mode!

So, get motivated this Monday morning by getting up and getting dressed!

Free Jiffy Mix Recipe Booklet

I have been on a hunt for freebies and found one that I just love - the "Hospitality in a Jiffy" recipe booklet. When I received it in the mail, I sat down and actually read the thing! Yum!  The booklet contains recipes including German Chocolate Muffins, Lemon Crinkle Top Cookies, Sweet Cider Donuts, Impossible Vegetable Quiche, Tamale Meatballs and lots more.
You can also check out some of their recipes online, but the booklet is great. Why not consider ordering the recipe booklet, buying a couple of Jiffy Mixes and giving the combo as a stocking stuffer for Christmas? It's not too early to start thinking about Christmas....

Visit the Jiffy Mix site to order your free Recipe Booklet - www.jiffymix.com

Shades of Gray - In My Hair

After reading the reviews of the popular book "50 Shades of Gray", it isn't likely that I will be reading it.
The only shades of gray that I have is in my hair!
And I was pretty sure there was a song about shades of gray and lo, and behold! I found it on youtube! It's a song by the Monkees! It's a nice song, great lyrics.

Meow Mix Pate Toppers and Furemover Mitts

I bought a couple of new things for my cat the other day; one was a plus, one was a minus.

I noticed a new item, Meow Mix Pate Toppers, and since it was on sale, I thought I'd give it a try and see if my cat would like it. She didn't. She smelled it but wouldn't taste it. But, you never know - cats are peculiar and tomorrow if I had more, she might eat it and meow for more!

The other product I bought for my cat (and me) was a "Furemover Mitt" by Evri-Pet/Everholder My poor cat has been shedding so much lately that everytime I vacuum and empty the dust cup, I probably have at least enough fur in there to get a good start on making a new cat! I've been brushing her regularly, but when I saw the Furemover Mitt, I thought I'd give that a try.
After her initial shock of seeing my hand in a big pink and white mitt with rubber nubbies, my cat decided she liked it! I started just gently petting her, mitt on hand, and she purred and purred and kept wanting more! Oh, my goodness - the fur! I had to clean off the mitt a couple of times - it really worked!
The "Furemover Mitt" is also supposed to be great for removing pet fur from couches, chairs and carpets. I'll be giving that a try today!

Ten Signs That You Are Fed Up With Frugality

1. While at the grocery store meat case, you linger longer at the standing rib roasts before proceeding to the ground beef.

2. When you read about a celebrity using $1000 per ounce face cream, you get mad.

3. You start researching used cars online but end up drooling at websites featuring cars that cost three times your yearly salary.

4. You splurge, blow your budget, and reason that "if the world gets taken out by an asteroid tomorrow, it won't matter anyway."

5. You add links to cute clothes to your Favorites list and "visit" those clothes several times per week.

6. You feel grief-stricken at the thought of yet another "staycation" and start ordering brochures for exotic destinations.

7. Even at 30% interest, credit cards are starting to have a certain appeal.

8. You start having odd fantasies involving bathroom remodeling and new carpet.

9. You are wondering if you could live on tap water and Ramen noodles for two weeks and spend the money you save for a night out on the town.

10. It's July and you are already thinking about Christmas gifts... that people could buy for you.