Organising Chaos

trying to bring beauty and order into a busy life


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BUSY, BUSY, EXHAUSTED

Hello lovely people. how are you all keeping? Yes, I am alive and well (despite popular belief!).
Last week was very busy during the day and I was too exhausted at night to write anything. I think my body was fighting a bug or something as I have been very lethargic all weekend, falling sleep in every corner, which is not really like me. But I am back. I feel restored and energetic this morning.

Last week I started painting my outdoor furniture and I am hoping to finish it this week to be able to show you. It is looking really fresh and I am delighted with it. I also bought some material to make some outdoor cushions which I would love to get done this week but I don’t know if it is a realistic expectation as I am going to Spain mid July this year and I am trying to get organised before the boys get their summer holidays next Tuesday.
Skimming stones in Plentzia
You see, the original flights were booked for the 2nd of August and the four of us we were heading to Plentzia (outside Bilbao – Spain) for the whole month. A month’s holidays is a luxury, I know, but It gets better. This summer is exceptional in that I am not working for “a man” but more for myself and as Mr B had to go to Dublin for a week of rehearsals in July, I decided to change my flights and go home with the boys mid July until the end of August (7 weeks!!!) This is probably the longest holiday I have had since college ( a long while ago…) and it might not repeat itself so I decided to make the most out of it.
At the beach
The boys love been in Plentzia. It is a small village by the sea, with the playground, the river (for crab catching or fishing) and the beach all under a 10 minute walk, surrounded by a family that adores them, daily ice-creams and Spanish food – what is not to love! It will also be great for their Spanish to spend 7 weeks in Spain but I bet they haven’t thought about it! i can’t wait to go, to spend quality time with family and friends, to see my adorable nieces (and hopefully steal them for a couple of days), to hopefully get some sunshine and vitamin D, to just be.
At the fairground with my nieces
So I have 7 working days to get the books, uniforms and back packs ready for September; to organize their summer clothes, see what I need to buy, put away their winter clothes that are in good condition and recycle the rest and finish off little projects. Wish me luck!

Ths simple life

What are your summer plans? Are you organized?
Chaotic Itzi


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MAKE YOUR OWN ORGANISING TAGS

I am an aspiring organised person, a wannabe. I mean, I love the idea of having things organised but I don’t always get to organise them, either for lack of storage, lack of space,lack of energy and even sometimes pure laziness.
OrganisingChaosBlog - Make your own tags
When I do organise, I like grouping things together, putting them in boxes, jars, baskets and bags and in order to remember what is where, I like tagging them. Tags are great as they come in different sizes and they can be hung from anything.
OrganisingChaosBlog - Make your own tags
The things is, tags don’t necessarily need to be boring and plain, nor they have to expensive to be pretty. All you need to do in order to make a pretty tag is some cardboard, some pretty paper, some glue, some washi paper and your imagination is your limit. There are so many free tag templates around the net these days that you don’t even have to draw your own ones. For this project have chosen few different from RubberStamping and Ihanna.
Make your own tags - Material
Cover some with paper, put some washi tape over others, cover only the edges… whatever pattern or design takes your fancy, whatever you have, whatever suits your house.
OrganisingChaosBlog - Make your own tags
This personalised tags are also great to make any gift feel more special and individual.
OrganisingChaosBlog - Make your own tags
Come on! get organised!

Chaotic Itzi

Organising Chaos


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HACKING AND UP-CYCLING

I keep noticing that there is a growing trend to “hack” anything and everything. I am not talking about the “breaking into the CIA computer program” kind of hack. No, I wouldn’t even know where to start. I am talking about transforming something inexpensive and plain into an amazing cheaper version of what you wanted. There are some amazing websites out there that give you some great ideas. My favorite one is Ikea Hackers (get some coffee before you open it as you will spend hours in there!)
OrganisingChaosBlog - Ikeahack
I guess that the idea of hacking has always been around. Up-cycling could be considered hacking, as you are re-purposing an item that was already used for something different. Older generations were masters of up-cycling and hacking. There is nothing like going to my parent’s and grandparents house to see furniture, decorations and general stuff being used in different ways.

I find it extremely interesting that nowadays we would purposely go out and search the second-hand shops to find vintage items to decorate our house and we would go out to buy paint to up-cycle an old piece of furniture, when before it was just the done thing. The only thing has changed is the reasons behind doing this. My parents and grandparents grew up in a time where throwing things out was a luxury. Furniture was better quality, it got passed on from generations to generations. If it got broken, you’d fix it, and you keep using it. Now we want a bit of character, something with personality, something not to middle-of-the-road.
OrganisingChaosBlog - Upcycled Ladder
Attitudes and consumer habits have changed a lot regarding furniture in the last 40 years. Prices and quality have gone down and when something gets broken we simply replace it. Even if we try to fix it first, we often find that it is more expensive to fix it than to replace it as some of the traditional trades are disappearing. When was last time you thought of re-upholstering your couch or armchair rather than replacing it? I know I haven’t.

There are so many shops offering good value for new furniture. Not only that, but we have totally embraced flat-pack into our lives. I love going to Ikea and getting pretty good-value products that I don’t necessarily need – but they are so pretty… and let’s face it, it is easy. It is easy to drive to the one shop, buy everything from serviette to bed linen, at a good price than driving around looking for good quality old products that need some love and time. I often have that debate with myself but I still pop into Ikea at every opportunity I can (and it is over 2 hours away!).

I guess I am trying to find balance. Balance between the old and the new, the easy and the complicated, the clean lines and the broken edges. Balance in general, and it is not an easy task.

Have a wonderful day!
Chaotic Itzi


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NO FOOD WASTE PROJECT

A few months ago, I decided to try to implement a No Food Waste policy in our house. We have always been very conscientious about no wasting food but unfortunately there is always something that makes it to the bin. Plus my freezer is always so full that makes it hard to keep control of what I have in there.

This challenge is very easy to implement into anyone’s life. You only need to take 10 minutes out every week to plan ahead and make two lists:
Make a menu for NoFoodWaste Project - OrganisingChaosBlog
First make your WEEKLY MENU. We have our Breakfast Menu set up already, so that is easy. You need to decide what you are having for lunch and dinner that week. Check what you already have in your larder, fridge and freezer to make sure that those things get eaten first. I usually sit down with the boys to plan our weekly menu and they take turns making suggestions.  It is important to get children involved in food conversations, to talk about healthy options and treats, and balanced meals. I find that they also eat better if they feel that they are part of the planning stages, We write our menu in our kitchen blackboard so we all know what the next meal is and we can get organised in advance.
NoFoodWaste Project - OrganisingChaosBlog
Once you have decided on your menu, make the SHOPPING LIST based on what is on the list and only on the list. I know it seems very obvious but it will make you cut down on food waste and on your bill. For example, I used to buy loads of vegetables and fruit on a weekly bases without thinking how much we would realistically eat. The amount of salad leafs, raspberries and strawberries that have ended up in the bin due to lack of planning have broken my heart (and nearly my pocket). Now I only buy what we know we are going to eat that week and it works a treat.

It is very satisfying to see your fridge emptying slowly knowing that everything gets eaten fresh and that nothing will end up in the bin.
It is good for you, for the environment and your pocket.

Have you got a system that works? Share it with us!
Chaotic Itzi