Organizing, ad nauseum.

Well, I spent more than a few hours in the basement the other day.  It still looks rough since I still need hubby to hang some shelves and I need to sell some stuff, but it’s better!  There’s floor!  Still a pile of tubs of crap hubby needs to burn in the yard, but still.  Picking my battles here…  Love that retro green table and barrel stool?  Hand-me-downs from my parents.  Was my mom’s old sewing setup until my dad got her a giant wall unit that is a freakin’ monster.  I repurpose all kinds of things with no qualms around here.  It’s been a storage table, landing area in the basement for a while now.  Hopefully turning it this way helps make it better, especially since this month hopefully hubby will be building me a counter for the unseen wall to the left here to house my food buckets and jar cases, leaving me more landing space for things as they make their way down here.

The other side of organization in the basement.  This is a combination of homeschool supplies and books, sewing stuff, canning/food stuff, and toys.  Yup, we’re all over the map down here.  Hence the post-it notes on buckets as I’m still sorting out exactly what I want and where.  That blue laundry basket is full of stuff to sell, that play sink may make it’s way to the homeschool room in the next month, who knows.

Homeschool room.  I know it looks awful and crazy right now.  But it’s an organized crazy.  The curtains, I’m working on a timeline thing.  To be shown at some point, if/when I get it done.  The pile of stuff to the left/in front of the wood stove, is mostly school/craft stuff of mine that needs to be put in the proper places.  The table on the right?  All consignment.  I need to start labeling that and getting it out of there, just needed to get it all in one place as I get started on it.

It always looks worse before it gets better.  Always.  Kind of overwhelming at first.  Especially when I’m trying to figure out what I want to put where, and what makes sense.

The pantry, from left to right.

Seed starting shelves and booze.  And water heater.  The wheat grinder will have a new home in the other basement room sometime soon if things pan out how we want.  Leaving more room for jarboxed canned goods, or something.

Hey look, our water heater!  Seriously, I cannot recommend that drip pan idea enough.  It’s saved our bacon at least twice since we put it in.  Simple, but awesome.

Why yes, I like canning jars.  Half-gallon to 40z, to Grolsch style.  All over the map here.

Love me my Jarboxes.  Jeri is such a sweetheart, I had the pleasure of meeting her a few years back.

Yup, I’m a fan of post-its to label everything.  Easily changeable, cheaper than P-Touch label refills, and yeah.  The colors don’t hurt, even if I’m not a fan of neon.

The smaller school planner

My two planners.  My general everything planner on the left.  The new-this-year co-op planner on the right.

First up, the printouts of class schedules.  Because we’re always looking for someone or somewhere.  With that many kids and the classes changing so often (and most of them not used to classrooms period!), it gets interesting.  Having these printed out have been helpful.

Next section is for my Lego classes.  Each week, I give them a different challenge.  Build something with animals.  Use only one color.  Create a building.  That kind of thing.  Then towards the end of the hour, they come up and tell me all about their creation and I take their photo.  Here is where my notes about their creation reside.

My freezer cooking class.  The syllabus I sent home with the kids with specifics and all that jazz.

And then little pocket thingies for the actual recipes.  I might put the recipes in order of when we do them, if/when I figure that one out myself.

Next section is my plans for my herbal remedy class next year.  I need to gather up the supplies all this summer, definitely wasn’t something I could pull together in a week.  But with the pre-planning done now before the height of harvest season (when co-op begins again!), that’ll be one less thing to freak me out.  After this, I have a blank section for another potential/eventual class idea, and blank paper to insert elsewhere as need be.

And because none of my posts can go by without me mentioning food…
Chicken stock!  Yup, I get gelatinous blobs more often than not nowadays.  Takes time and finding the method that works for you.  My stock is yummy though.  This is concentrated stock from two chickens.  Takes up a bit more than 3/4 of that half-gallon jar.

Spaghetti organizing!

Yeah, that’s right, you see it.  First, I’d made a giant pot of MIL’s spaghetti sauce.  There was barely any room in the pot to stir it, so over seven quarts.  Wanted something to go with the spaghetti, so I dug out some buttery garlic knots.  But since I needed them to thaw/rise quickly to toss in the oven, well, yeah.  I think outside the box sometimes.

The during.  I’d pulled out all the spices I had in those drawers, and boom.  Insta-mess.  I like flavorful food, and my spice cabinet shows it I suppose.  That and we like salt.

Top drawer.

Second drawer.

Bottom two drawers.  The very bottom one is entirely full of salts, peppers, and cinnamon.  Since I can’t exactly grow and harvest those suckers myself.

See, all pretty and sorted and organized.  The wall is my herby goodness, at least the beginnings of it until we get more built up there.  That tower of drawers is all my spices.  I have little bits of them up in the kitchen, the refills are down here.  And you can see my lovely, re-boxed canned fruit there off to the side.  I got a bunch of Jarboxes when they were on sale before Christmas, and finally had a chance to start using some of them.  It looks so pretty now, versus the random fruit boxes I typically had them in.