hit the ground running

I decided on a whim that 2013 will be the year in which I finally transform that living space into something looking pulled together and grown-up no matter the costs. It’s now two years that I haved moved in, and except for the living room – which also could be a lot better – most of it is still a jumbled mess. Due to lack of furniture, or because we have out-grown furniture. And I don’t have any oversea vacation planned. *sadface* So for once, I will unleash that carefully guarded beast that is my inner perfectionst. She’s daaaaangerous and with highly expensive taste. But. I am a highly visual person and jumbled, dull and dark makes me a sad puppy. Also I don’t think that we’re in any trouble to qualify for “Schöner Wohnen”1 because our tastes are waaaay to quirky.

As a first step I dragged my poor parents to IKEA, because they have a car, and I don’t. Cue masses of french people with the very same idea, but we survived. Of course, the chest2 I wanted for the bedroom was unavailable, which was a bummer, but at least I finally got that kitchen shelf I wanted for the last two years. And some more organizing thingamabobs. And I just ordered a pretty shoe rack from Amazon to tame that pile of shoes in the hallway.

So far on the epic List of Better Living:
- Get a new matress for the bed
- Order nice Doctor Who, Star Wars and Star Trek fanart from DeviantArt to dress the walls – and get frames to put them in
- Get a hood for the stove
- Figure out that nightmare named Hallway of Dooooom. Seriously, that thing is still just a fancy basement space right now. Gah. The whole thing is as big as my former appartment, so clearly, having that much space overwhelms me. Off to Pinterest to get inspired.
- Lights. Pretty ones. Most importantly for the bathroom, which still has only the bare bulbs to show off… yes, I KNOW.
- Take the plunge and buy a new closet. The old one is literally falling apart and doesn’t hold all or stuff anyway.
- Decorate. Somehow I was brainwashed into Minimalism, although I really don’t like its emptiness. I want more sparky useless things around me, which make me happy. And a fake mantlepiece to put them on.

I bet the perfectionist will come up with more stuff.

building a better mousetrap

This weekend I was hit with a serious case of “OMGWFBBQ, I have to get going with the hallway1, it drives me crazy!” First, a trip to the home improvement store was in order. As the weather was quite nice, we took the bikes and had a leisurely cruise through the woods and meadows around here. After buying an asortment of screws and anchors, hooks, chains, angles and – hooray – a new shower head2, I proceeded to build a new coatrack.

As I am sick of that retro-midcentury-modern-designer-humbug that’s all the rage at the moment, I wanted something way edgier. Something not everybody has in their house. And it should have the feel of an art installation. May I present to you, the wardrobe à la Diana, slaughterhouse-style:
wardrobe

That happens when a woman overcomes her fear of the power drill: She drills holes everywhere!

Next step in the big bad hallway adventure: Painting stripes. I did the first round today. It only took me like forever and a gazillion coats of really good paint to make three of them blend into the rest of the white. But – I’m getting there. Tomorrow I will mount my mini shelves and then everything will look much better. I hope.

zoinks, i turned myself into a freak!

Every domestic goddess worth her name knows that the secret to an always fairly representable home is “Routine, Routine, Routine!” Well, I always have high flying plans and intentions, but this time, I astonished myself.

One of the many mantras of cleaning is the morning routine. Mine for example is swishing down the tub and basin, doing the dishes, making the bed and tidy the kitchen as much as time allows. Because it is so much nicer to come home to a sparkly kitchen. I also try to do at least one other tidying related thing like picking up stuff in the living room, putting away laundry, etc, but that depends on how much time I still have left before I have to make the dash to the busstop. I’m usually pretty knackered in the evening, so doing little things in the mornings helps to keep the place looking decent.

Since a few weeks I also have an evening routine. The list is a bit longer as I don’t have to catch a bus, only the train to Dreamland. It’s more cleaning and preparing related as the morning routine and it’s main focus is too keep the kitchen from turning into a pigsty. As I have recently learned, a cluttered messy kitchen literally drives me mad. And that’s a place I don’t want to go to. It took me some time to actually drag my lazy self into the kitchen and return it to it’s prestine glory. It took me even more time to get used to it. But now it’s like second nature and mornings are less stressful. Also: doing the dishes every time goes much much much faster that doing one massive pile every morning.

Those two routines do a very good job in keeping the place together. A little goes a long way during the week until I have time to do some deep cleaning at the weekend. But routines do not have to stop at those two. I have also a list of weekly stuff that I want to get to (but not always do, to be honest) that I have devided evenly across the seven days. Like watering the plants1, vacuuming the heavy traffic areas, dusting, filing papers, … Gosh, that sounds all so well organized, but with my brain all over the place it’s more a necessity.

As I don’t want to spend the bigger part of my weekend with cleaning – as much as I like it, I want to play, too – I declared Wednesday Morning as my “Half way through the week” Cleaning day. Meaning, I go into the office half an hour later and instead do some vacuuming/dusting/picking up stuff. But I never thought that would actually be insane enough to let the vacuum roar at 8am. Well – I am. Looks like I really turned myself into a freak.

And how do you organize your household? Am I insane or an overachiever? Tell me!

sesambagels mit schinken und kräuterquark

Aside

sandwich of the week

Die Kunst des belegten Brotes wird oft unterschätzt. Aber meine drei Monate in Irland haben mich schnell zu einem Follower des “Heiligen BLT” werden lassen – was im übrigen für Bacon Lettuce Tomato steht und einfach nur g ö t t l i c h ist. Da ich über Mittag im Büro nicht wirklich warm essen kann, weil ich danach nämlich den Rest des Tages mit schweren Lidern im Bürosessel hänge, sind belegte Brote eine ideale Lösung. In letzter Zeit war ich allerdings etwas langweilig drauf. Um mich etwas anzuspornen, Abwechslung in die Mittagspause zu bringen und gleichzeitig auch noch Blogfutter zu haben, erkläre ich den Mittwoch jetzt zum Sandwich of the Week Tag. Und den Anfang machen meine geliebten Sesambagels.

Für 2 Bagels braucht man:
2 Sesambagels zum Aufbacken (oder andere Brötchen)
Quark
ein paar Blätchen frische gehackte Kräuter nach Wahl, ich nehme Majoran, Thymian & Salbei
4 Scheiben Schwarzwälder Schinken
Salz
Pfeffer

Nach dem Aufbacken der Bagels diese einmal durchschneiden (so dass man zwei Hälften mit Loch hat) und auf die Unterseite den Quark streichen. Mit Salz, Pfeffer und den Kräutern bestreuen. Jeweils 2 Scheiben Schinken auf dem Quark drapieren und die obere Hälfte drauf legen. Fertig.

Sandwich Foto mit CC Lizenz von Pabo76

Haha! sprach der Winter…

Aside

… und schüttelte seine Schneedecke aus. Hatte ich was von Frühlingsgefühlen geschrieben? Einen Tag später lag wieder Schnee. Nicht viel. Aber – aaaaah, ich will Frühling!

Immerhin, die Samen sind am Aufgehen – zumindest hier drinnen wird das was mit dem Frühling. Das Pfeilblatt hat sich übrigens gut eingelebt, es wächst seine 5cm am Tag. *gulp* Und der Weihnachtskaktus (Schlumbergera) hat beschlossen ein Fasnachtskaktus zu sein und nochmal richtig fett Knospen angesetzt. Zu Weihnachten, als er noch in der dunklen “Nordseiten”-Wohnung war, hatte er sich immerhin zu einer einzigen kleinen Blüte durchringen können, und ich war so stolz auf ihn. Jetzt bin ich natürlich hin und weg. Und die Azalee, die mir die liebe Lena zum Einzug geschenkt hat, blüht auch immernoch eifrig… hier drin hat der Winter also keine Chance. Ha!