Alyssa is home! She arrived this afternoon and she is already upstairs taking a nap. That is exactly what I used to do when I went home from college for a break - I started it out with a good nap in my own bed. Looks like the apple didn't fall far from the tree in regard to her love of naps.
Over the course of the past several days I have put forth a lot of effort to conquer the Flat Surface Syndrome that I am guilty of contributing to. Before I began my clean up, my house had fabric and sewing projects laying on every available surface, and as I mentioned: it looked like a fabric store gone bad. Now, after four days of putting away and reorganization, I'm happy to say that all my flat surfaces are clean and shiny - and all my sewing projects have been put where they belong (away!).
What is it about flat surfaces? These areas of unused space just scream for stacking and piling and unloading "stuff." Today when Alyssa came home, the first thing she did was dump her keys and her coat on the perfectly clean and uncluttered island in the kitchen. I had to laugh because she is the worst offended of Flat Surface Syndrome. In fact, it surprises me that I have let this beast get the best of me since she went away to college. Anyway.... I knew that the minute she got home, my flat surfaces would not remain uncluttered. Yep, I was right.
Through the years, in an attempt to do the right parenting thing by teaching my kids how to pick up after themselves, Alyssa and I have had the Flat Surface Syndrome discussion many times. And every time we are expecting company, she starts to grouse because all of a sudden her treasure trove of stacks disappear (I take those right up to her room and dump them on her bed). Her response has always been, "If you are so concerned about clutter, why do you let the refrigerator look like an art gallery of trash?" She never says it in a sassy tone, but rather as a sincere question because I think she has always been boggled by the contradiction of my desire to alleviate Flat Surface Syndrome altogether. And she has a point. My poor refrigerator - it is where I display all those little pictures that I don't want to put away and that I don't know what else to do with. And, to be completely honest, it is an unsightly mess.
And so, because I believe in full disclosure (even at my own expense), I will give you a little peek at what Alyssa is talking about when questioning the state of refrigerator art:
She's right! It looks like trashy art. I honestly have to admit that the front of my fridge is a total disaster. But every time I go to un-clutter this mess, I can't bear the thought of taking down even one single picture. I have pictures on this fridge that were moved from my old home and fridge to the new home and fridge - those pictures are over 16 years old - and still they remain right there on the fridge where I can look at them every single day. Why? Because in spite of the messy appearance, I love my trashy refrigerator art.
The moral of this story is that I am a hypocrite when it comes to Flat Surface Syndrome. If the area is flat, as in horizontal, then I want it clean. If the area is flat, as in vertical, then I am the world's worst offender. So there you have it... I'm a hypocrite and I am just now figuring this out.
And now that I have publicly humiliated myself by sharing my messing refrigerator, I will be done with the whole discussion of Flat Surface Syndrome because, clearly, I have not yet conquered the problem in spite of the fact that my horizontal flat surfaces are looking darn nice right now.
As time draws near for the arrival of Mom & Norm and Lon & Deb, I felt the need to make a little craft for our holiday table. This is nothing special - and definitely not fancy - but I thought I'd post the project because it is a very easy way to use up old craft supplies while making name tags for the holiday place settings:
Supplies: stickers, cardstock, pop dots, talcum powder, child's paint brush and a bone folder. That's all you will need to make these little tags.
Instructions: cut the cardstock to the size of 4x6 inches. Fold in half using the bone folder. Use a Sharpie Marker (my favorite writing tool) to write the names. Add the stickers using the pop dots: place a pop dot on the back of each sticker, leaving the cover on the top of the pop dot. Using the paintbrush, dust the sticker with baby powder to get rid of the stick. Next, remove the cover of the pop dot and place the sticker on the name tag in desired location.
This is a great craft for children who want to help with the holiday decorations and it is a wonderful way to use outdated or old products. Or, in my case, it is a fun way to kill time when you feel like playing with stickers.
To all my friends and family, I wish you a happy holiday filled with much love and lots of laughter. When I pause to consider my blessings, family and friends are at the top of the list and I am so very grateful that for the love and support you show as we enjoy this journey of life together.