Saturday, May 2, 2009

Cosi fan tutte

So, if your husband forwards an email to you about ODU's opera theatre's final performance and asks if you'd like to go, what is your answer? Come now. You had a baby two months ago. The last time you went out with the man was in December. The last time you used a babysitter in Norfolk was July. You cannot remember the last time you used your teenage babysitter. Close to two years maybe? You say yes!

Then you fret about finding a babysitter. You forget to ask around. You remember that you do not particularly like the opera. You tell yourself that the tickets are cheap. Going out is good. In fact, if you were going to see people stand on their heads, (nothing against those who do) you would. You see the teenage babysitter your kiddos love at the park. You ask. You ask for Friday or Saturday. She says Saturday. This is good, because when you get home, you realize the performance is on Thursday and Saturday. You feel embarrassed. You need more sleep.

So, now you are going to the opera, with your dear husband and two month old baby. You arrive and choose aisle seats towards the back. The baby poops. You go to change the baby before they begin. There are no changing tables. There are no counters. You quickly change the baby on a ledge. It is a small theatre. They hold the show for you. The baby fusses during the introduction. You go out in the hall, but the door will lock behind you. You spoke with the usher before hand. You know him. He is the nice librarian who sees you run in on Monday nights to gather books for your class. He lets you back in. The baby fusses again. You stand in the aisle and she settles.

The show begins. You realize how much you enjoy Mozart's music and style. The voices are thrilling. The artists are amazing. You realize how much of the story is told in their faces. Perhaps this is why you did not like the opera. You were never close enough to understand it.

The baby nurses and sleeps in her sling. The entire time. You return home to find your other three children asleep. All is well. The Opera.

If I had to choose symphony, ballet or opera, I'd opt. for the first two. However, this performance opened my eyes to the opera's beautiful possibilities. I know I enjoyed it more than headstands.

Friday, May 1, 2009

a pantry

It's a good thing I like to organize. And it's a good thing that organizing helps me feel better, since I haven't been feeling too well. And it's so very good that Laura over at Organizing Junkie has another round-up. I actually did part of February's - recipes, but dear Anna was born the last day of February, so I didn't get it posted. Now I'm determined to show you my organizing from April.

Our pantry before:
and after:I took this project slowly. One shelf at a time. What you see is mostly shifting and some purging. (And that my favorite spaghetti sauce and baked beans were on sale.) The wok moved up, along with lunch boxes. The juicer moved down, but is still behind the crockpots. I thought maybe easier to reach would inspire me to use it? I found the whisk in there and toothpicks. And steak knives. They all got moved to more appropriate spaces. The pantry is the saving grace of my kitchen, since there are only four other cabinets, three drawers and one small counter. Sometimes stuff just waits there until I can find it a better home, like steak knives and such. Anyhow, all the snacks are in one spot, canned goods are across the center, pasta in one corner, flour down in a small baking corner. Fruit's together. Beans all in a row, etc. You can't really tell in any of the photos, but you could not see the floor. Now you can. I like that.

a closet

Our home has one closet that is not in a bedroom. It's in the hall and serves as the linen closet too. A thought: in Nashville we had a walk-in closet in one of our bathrooms. Sheesh. Here we have this, which is my second round-up:
On the floor is the beach bag, vacuum, scale, toilet plunger. Shelf one is towels and tp. Up on top is shower cleaner, dog shampoo, asthma machine and baby bathtub. Everything else is in the middle. At least now we can find the everything else. (I moved the vacuum for the pic.)I'm afraid I don't have a very good picture of the transformation. I completely cleared the "everything" shelf, put the like with like and got rid of stuff we don't use. There's a little basket with sample size toiletries for guests. Behind that is a cup holding extra toothbrushes and travel toothpaste. There are mine and Jesse's toiletry kits, with products in them and filled. And the extra soap, shampoo and toothpaste. Last are the hair clippers. I found the cape for that in the back and got it in the case. I also considered moving the asthma machine. However, if I got a sudden attack, the last thing I'd want to do is go digging for medicine in the garage, so here it stays.
This is the only project that I timed. 45 minutes. I was holding and nursing Anna for 20 min. of that.

and a cupboard

Last but not least, I wanted to tackle the cupboard above the stove. I had not organized it in the three years we've lived here. This cupboard holds spices, oils, cereal both hot and cold, bulk tea, liquor and party supplies. The party supplies are what bothered me the most. We just threw stuff in that corner and hoped it didn't fall back on us. (Anyone else have a shelf like that?) It was dangerous too, because if it did come sliding down, it might land in a boiling pot.

Oh, and the coffee I've started drinking was up there too. I moved the coffee. I wanted it near my French Press and did not want my cute carafe up in this danger zone.

Danger zone no longer:(but still no coffee there.) Good-bye ugly broken wipes tub. Hello cute basket that I've held onto for seven years looking for the perfect purpose. Cleaning out old tea we don't use and that basket made all the difference here. It is just the right size for holding streamers, candles, balloons and such. My only regret is that I did not do this sooner. Then I might have found the 6 candle in time for David's birthday.

I LOVE organizing closets and cupboards. They stay that way. I pick up. Stuff gets out. (Sometimes by itself. I swear.) I clean hands and faces and bums and clothes and tables and the toilet. They all get dirty again. I cook. It's eaten. I knit. And Anna's trying to grow out of her sleeper sack before I finish it. I organize a cupboard or closet. It will remain that way for three to six months. I feel good every time I open it. "Here's a little space that does not need to be redone." Thanks Laura! and all the inspiration over at Organizing Junkie.