Organizing Your Life One Drawer At a Time

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Drawer separators are amazing. I found this one at Bed Bath and Beyond, and miraculously 3 of them fit perfectly into my vanity drawer!

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Now that I can actually see what makeup I have,  I can get out of the house in the morning at least 10 minutes faster! Next drawer to organize is my kitchen accessories. For that drawer you can use drawer separators without compartments to hold longer items like wooden spoons.

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Extra Versitile Olive Oil

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I love finding new uses for my glass jars and bottles! This bright green bottle used to contain extra virgin olive old from California Olive Ranch. As you know, I use olive oil pretty frequently when I cook, so I didn’t have to wait long to decorate my home with the bottle!

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One way to use this bottle was as a dish soap container. After thoroughly cleaning the bottle, pour in regular dish soap with a splash of water to make it less dense. Top the bottle with a pour spout that you can purchase for under $5.

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Another more obvious way to re-purpose this bottle is as a vase. I filled it with some fresh lavender from my yard and it really made my room look and smell like spring.

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Have a great weekend everyone!

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Spring Cleaning! Polishing the Silver

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Polishing sliver seems so far away to me, like it’s from another Downton Abbey-esk world. But sure enough it still needs to be done in 2013. I have three silver pieces in my home: a pitcher (from Napa Style  http://www.napastyle.com/), a little hand mirror and a cosmetic jar. I’ll be honest I probably polish them once a year, and today is that day.

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ImageIt is definitely time.

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My go to products are: Hagerty Silversmiths Polish, and Goddard’s Silver Polishing Cloth.  Both can be found at Bed Bath and Beyond.

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Coat each silver piece generously with polish and let sit for a minute or two. Once it has dried, rub it off with the polishing cloth in back and forth motions, not circles. You can use a little muscle to really make it shine!

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Silver may seem like a hard metal, but it is extremely delicate and can scratch easy. My first time polishing my pitcher I decided the rough side of a sponge would really make it shine, WRONG. I completely dulled the mid section which you can still see when you compare it to the nice shiny top. A soft sponge will do, but I would really recommend this polishing cloth.

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This whole process took about 10 minutes. A small sacrifice to feel a little more fancy.

Out with the Old – In with the New : Reinventing the Kitchen Chair

BEFORE & AFTER

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My apartment in New York was around 200 square feet– just enough room for a bed….and well just a bed. When I moved to Los Angeles I needed a lot of furniture fast! It had to be cheap but I also wanted pieces that would last. I found this charming walnut table and chairs for around $300 at Wertz Brothers in Santa Monicahttp://wertzbrothers.com/. They specialize in used furniture and antiques and have very reasonable items and very expensive ones as well. I loved everything about my kitchen dinning set, except the old worn yellow velvet upholstery.

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The idea of redoing them myself seemed way over my head, but I decided to try anyway. I found a fun chocolate and magenta fabric that I thought would be fun and got to work.

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First I had to take off the old seat cushions, which was easy enough. I just had to unscrew the old screws by hand and pop off the seats.

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The next part was more difficult: getting new padding. I decided to cheat a little and brought one of the seats to an upholstery shop where they cut out foam to fit. They also used spray adhesive to bond the foam to some dacron fabric that would help to secure the foam to the seat. I highly recommend this short cut. It saved a lot of time and energy and only cost me $40!

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I placed each seat on the foam, tightly wrapped the dacron around the edges and secured it with a staple gun.

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After cutting out four squares of the fabric I did the same process of securing it on the seat on fall four sides, leaving the corners for last.

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My staples are not that straight- but who cares it’s going underneath!

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Once all four seats had their new fabric, I popped them back in the chairs, tightened the screws and was ready for a dinner party!

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This project really individualized my kitchen, and made me feel right at home.

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Whole Grain Mustard Crusted Salmon

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I am a huge fan of salmon! (This wont be my last post on the subject) One of my favorite ways to make this lovely meaty fish, is to combine it with the acidic flavors of mustard and lemon.

Ingredients:

2 Fillets of Salmon ( around 6 ounces each)

2 Tbsp Whole Grain Mustard

2 Tbsp Dijon Mustard

2 Tbsp Lemon Juice

Salt and Pepper to Taste

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Squeeze one lemon until you have about 2 tablespoons of juice.

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Combine with whole grain and Dijon mustard, and a little salt and pepper.

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Lay salmon fillets on a baking sheet. (I like to line it with aluminum foil for easy clean up! )

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Coat the top of each fillet with the lemon mustard sauce and pop into the oven for 10 minutes for a slightly pink center. Leave it in the oven for 15 minutes to cook the fish through. It’s that easy and super healthy!

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I served this salmon over sauteed zucchini, cherry tomatoes, and basil. Stay tuned for that recipe later this week!

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