21:12 – Oh, my lovelies!

It’s been a few days since my barbecue party. We had a great time, hanging out and catching up. Now, I don’t know what’s going on every time I decide to throw a barbecue party…  this is the third party in as many years, and two out of three times it’s been raining. And we are not talking a small drizzle either!

The first time (on my 50th birthday) the heavens opened and there wasn’t a dry anything within miles of my house, seriously it was not pouring down, it was crashing down.

Then last year, it was actually somewhat decent, a bit cold, but at least not much rain. Which brings us to this year, and we’re back to rain again 😦 Happily we did get to grill most of the food before it all started, but we had no choice but to stay indoors most of the evening.

Now, if I was to be a betting woman (and I could be 😉 ), logic says that next years party will be outdoor (well a girl can hope can’t she? ) and I’m so looking forward to that.. and if I’m really gonna be optimistic, I’m hoping for shorts and flip flops 😉

Speaking of party and footwear!

A few years back, for my younger brothers big 40th birthday bash, I got my hands on some really pretty shoes. I saw them, fell in “love” and they not only worked perfectly with my outfit, they looked good on me 😉

Fast forward too today… the lovelies (I did mentioned I really really think they are pretty, yes?) have been sitting in my closet unused for some time. They are still just a lovely, I still kinda “love” them.. but… I just don’t use them.

I rarely use high heeled shoes to begin with, and the last few years (since I got sick) I’ve used high heels even less than before. High heels hurt my foot and I have found a really cute low heeled pair in almost the same color, that I now use instead, on those few occasions where pretty shoes are needed.

So I have decided that (regardless of how I much I like them and think they are pretty) that it is time for them to leave the premises. I could off course keep them for the sole purpose of admiring them, but that’s just silly now, isn’t it?

So here I am, on day 12 – sending a pair of shoes of to the salvation army, for someone else to use.. hopefully more than I have done!

One cute pair of shoes going out-the-door! 

Which brings my grand total for 2017 to 707

 

 

21:11 – A little bit of this, a little bit of that! 

It looks like the consensus was for me to forge ahead with my 21 day declutter challenge, so here we are at day 11 🙂

Thursday I’m kicking off my now yearly barbecue party (this is the second year), so guess where my time is going these days?

Yep! I’m knee deep in making my garden look good, cleaning and clearing it up. I’m also borrowing an extra table, some chairs and an extra grill from a friend, so I’ve picked that up. Today I’ve been trying to make the house look decent, just in case it’s raining and we have to stay inside. And tomorrow agenda is to get all the food shopping out of the way.

So you can see, why, there is not a lot of decluttering going on right at this moment…

Even so.. I had a small break from my party focus earlier today, and spent it pulling some random junk out of a couple of drawers.

Rather than leave the stuff in my guestroom (which is what I would normally do, until I had a bigger pile to write about on my blog) I’m just gonna do a quick write-up and then get the junk out of here…

Can’t have any of my guest trip over these huge (super, super) tiny piles, now.. can I?

So here we are.. three tiny piles… of items going out-the-door! 

Bunch of Christmas wrapping items
Sets of Sheets, ribbons, tags, more tags, wrapping paper,gift bag +++
28 items

Flower decoration pieces
2 packs of beeds, 3 – not sure what they are called, but they fasten decorations to a plate,
12 ribbons of silver tread, gold tread, beeds on a string, more strings of stuff…
17 items

Other random stuff
2 pens, 3 sets of secret soles for high heel shoes, 1 small box, 1 reflex
6 items

Today’s total = 51 itsy bitsy items! 

 

My grand total before the hiatus, was 655. Today’s number brings it all to 706 for the year!

 

OK! So it’s not really a lot of stuff, I get that! And it’s not really anything that shows up, decluttered storage wise… I get that too.  But! It is a tiny start on getting back into the declutter mode… and everyone needs to start somewhere! 😉

21 Day Challenge – Now what?

I have a tiny dilemma.

When I started my 21 day challenge in January, my plan was to get it done in a couple of months or so. You might remember I had my own progress plan, of counting only the days I actually decluttered, rather than doing it in 21 calendar days.

Never in my wildest dream did I imagine that I would only be at day 10 in early March, and then wham… nothing…. absolutely nothing!!!

Why did it all stop up? Well, between rushing to UK when mum got ill (March/April) and building a 540 square feet deck at a friends place (April/May) decluttering fell to the wayside 😦

However, I think it’s time to get back on the declutter train again.  And this is what my issue is.

  1. Do I start up my 21 day declutter challenge again, and continue on with day 11 as my next installment?
  2. Or do I just say I’m done with the challenge, lay it dead so to speak, and start “afresh” not following any plan?

A few considerations…

  • During the first 10 days of the challenge, I did exceed my goal of 231 items out the door, as I shed 655 items. So technically I did succeed and you might say I’m done!
  • And then there is this: It might look weird (to others) me continuing the “challenge”. After all, it’s not much of a challenge now, is it.. being at it for months 😳 (even though I did say I would go at my own pace)
  • On the other hand, if I quit the challenge, it feels like I’ve “thrown in the towel”… and that is not sitting right with me either!

And therein lies my problem…

To continue – Yea or Nay – that IS the question!

Any suggestions out there? Would you shake you head and find it weird if I continue on my “challenge”?

Eye candy! 

A couple of days ago, I visited one of my favorite places in town, Selvåg garden center.
You can probably see why its a favorite of mine 😀

 

Off course… being in heaven like this.. I just had to bring a little of it with me home 🙂

I love roses and this container was just waiting for a punch of color

And this yellow one, has been a staple on my patio the last few years. It get super large, and the color pops…
which I kinda need because in a short week or so, the Rhododendron are all done for the year…

I’ve also been looking for a large container, and when I came across this rust colored one, I just couldn’t help myself 🙂

And remember my awesome find last year? It’s the next one on my list.
So stay tuned for my next plant installment 😉

Spring project – One big wooden deck!

B and I have been a couple of busy bees lately (actually, since we came home from England, helping mum out). We’ve been working away at building a 540 square feet (about 50 square meter) wooden deck.

Yep, you heard right.. a itzy bitzy 540 square feet deck… just kidding, in our world this is a big deck!

Last fall, we visited a former colleague of mine, and she happened to mention she’s been wanting (for quite a while now) to extend her current deck, with about 150 – 170 square feet.

We thought that sounded like a fun little spring project, so we kinda threw it out there – “Hey.. we can help you with that!” 🙂

Little did we know at that time, that this tiny little project would take on a life of it own (which I guess things have a habit to do), and morph into a 540 square feet project instead.

That’s a heck of a change, you say, and you would be right 😉

As the story goes, there was a good reason though. There was a bit of discussion on how to add the extension to the old deck, and make it look half decent (the old part was close to 40 years old). So we all decided that, for the deck to look it’s best, we would remove the old deck boards and put down brand new ones. And presto, now we are talking 540.

Turns out it was a good decision, as a few of the old deck boards were in bad shape (some even rotten). It also gave us the opportunity to strengthen the old wooden frame (which had some flaws from earlier builds), and replace areas that had had a little to much wear and tear.

So there you have it… This is where our time has been going the last few weeks (which is why you haven’t seen me on the bloggosphere much).

The project has taken a little while, but thankfully my friend haven’t minded this at all, she’s been happy with any progress we had… I’m super thankful for this, as there was never any pressure on us, and it worked perfectly with me and my need to pace myself (due to my health issues). I wish everyone was as patient as this.  🙂

But slow going or no. Guess what? We are now officially done, new deck, new stairs and everything. And boy does it look good if I say so myself 🙂

Why don’t you take a look for yourself 😉

OLD DECK 

ALL TORN UP

BUILDING THE FRAME ADDITION

DECK BOARDS GOING IN

WOOHOO! ALL DONE 🙂

 

What do you think…? Approved?

Can’t wait to see some flowers on it later this summer… I’m sure we can sneak a visit to check it out, when she has it all decked out (see what I did there 😉 ) with furniture and plants.

Happy 17’th of May, Norway!

17 mai english

Today is a fine day in the Kindom of Norway

Today is the day we celebrate our independence

Today is the day to dress in your finest, our national costumes

Today is the day for parades and songs

Today is the day we greet the kings and queens.

Today is the day we fill with family and friends

Today is the day for fun, good food and ice cream

Today is the DAY!

Happy birthday everyone!

A video, explaining it all.

 

Hellooooo May!

I can’t believe it’s May already. We have forever been waiting for spring here in Stavanger and when it finally showed up a few days ago, May was just around the corner.

It’s been a couple of months since my last post on this website, and I’m sorry for dropping off the face of the Earth like that, leaving you guys hanging, without even a heads up. My apologies.

You see, a few weeks back my mum got ill. Nothing really serious, just a bit of a “bad” cold we thought. A couple of days into it, I woke up to a text from one of mum’s neighbors telling me that mum had been rolled into the hospital during the night.

Since mum has a habit of getting from bad to worse pretty quickly, due to her past history of pneumonia, combined with her not doing too good with medication, because of her autoimmune disorder (Sjøgrens), (we have had a couple of scares before) I wasn’t leaving much to chance this time… and booked a ticket to UK right away for the earliest plane we could get on.

After a nine hour trip B and I got to the hospital checking in on mum quickly before we called it a night. Over the next few days we visited twice a day, talked to the doctors, discussed medication and what we needed to do, to get mum back healthy.

Thankfully because of her quick admittance to the hospital and a few days with antibiotics through an IV (pretty much the only thing that works anymore) she was bouncing back and it was decided that she was well enough that she could go home 🙂

We stayed around for a while to take care of her, you know.. alt the little things of cooking, shopping, walking the dog, being mean making sure she took her meds 😉 and in general keeping her company, until she was back on her feet well enough she could fend for herself.

We are back home now, and I’m happy to say mum is getting better by the minute, as I got a text a couple of days ago that she was out and about doing a little shopping 🙂

I’m sorry I’ve got a couple of you guys worried about what was going on, but I haven’t felt much like writing…

But hey… I’m back now… so hopefully things should pick up a little 😉

 

 

21:10 – Slides from heaven?

It’s day ten of this years first 21 day declutter challenge.

When my dad passed away almost 4 years ago, he left behind a few things, among them a couple of boxes with slides, photos, letters, videos and audio tapes.

When he was a young man, my dad used to work on a ship. I was only a little girl, but I remembered he would travel to all sorts of “strange” places like Africa, Australia, Asia…  I think he told me once it was easier for him to count the countries he had not been to than it was to count the places he had been.

When he was out and about, he would take pictures, video and even send messages home by reel-to-reel audio tape.

Quite a few of the pictures he took, seems to have been taken in the 60’s, especially around the time, he worked on, what I think was, a survey ship.

I’ve been looking trough these boxes now and then, even gotten rid of a piece here or there… but… it’s time to actually hit these boxes and do something with what’s in them.

Quite a while back, I went through all of the slides, and picked out the ones I thought was worth keeping. I’ll be scanning the keepers, so that I have them as files, should anyone ever want any of them. After the scanning I will most likely discard the originals as I have to borrow equipment to be able to look at them. If the result of the scans are OK, I might make a mini album of the best ones later on.

When I looked through them, I sorted them into discard and keep, but… I decided that my brother should really have a look at them, before the non keepers are thrown away.

You see, I loved looking back at the slides my dad took, and I thought my brother would love it too.  Even though some of them were almost beyond recognition as they where pretty ruined, it still gave us a look into a life my dad had had. A life that we know very little about, as I was just a toddler, and my brother wasn’t even on the horizon at that time.

Last time my brother visited, we had a little stroll through history, and decided together which ones we want to keep for us to scan 🙂

I will bring them in for scanning or do the scanning myself sometime this year, but for now at least… I can get rid of the ones that are not worth keeping.

It was never a big collection (actually it was pretty small) even so, there are 373 slides going out the doors today (we are keeping about 220).

There was a bit of a debate on how I should count these as items out-the-door, 1 slide as 1 item? 5 slides as 1 item? or 10 slides as 1 item.

I’ll be doing regular photos soon, and to me it seems like 10 photos = 1 items is a ratio I’ll be happy with, and as slides are photos, it makes sense to me that 10 slides = 1 item 😉

Throw in 5 empty slide boxes (not counting the boxes the slides are in) and we have 5 boxes + 37 items (373 slides) =

42 items going out-the-door! 

 

Which brings my new grand total to 655 🙂 

21:09 – Another closet purge!

2017-21-day-9It’s day nine of this years first 21 day declutter challenge.

Over the last three or four years I’ve been chipping away at my closet.. and I’m finally making some headway (according to where I want my closet to be).

Now, mind you! My closet have never been particular huge. How can I say this? Well, every time I have found myself looking at what my friends have in their closets, mine has been positively “minimal” (sort off).

Even so, ever since I returned from Houston (where I had amassed a brand new wardrobe in addition to the one I had in Norway) I’ve felt the need to downsize my closet.

I’ve been reducing clothing and shoes as I’ve moved along this minimalist journey, and I am slowly getting to where I think I will be happy to leave my closet alone.. the only “problem”… my level of minimalism seem to change as I move further along on my minimalist path 😉

I think this is something a lot of you are familiar with, as we declutter the spaces around us (physically and mentally), we seem to shift the levels of where we would like to get to.

Now, I do not aspire to become a minimalist with less than a 100 things (well secretly I might be 😉 ), but I do aspire to get to a level, where there is a good flow of energy around me, where I could easily move house without getting totally stressed, where I could just pack a bag and never look back, because I would have the most important things with me and the things that didn’t fit in a bag, could easily be taken care off by someone else.

But I digress, lets get back to my latest wardrobe purge, a purge that have now brought my wardrobe down to a total of 263 items, which includes everything clothing and shoe related (even things like flip-flops, caps, buffs, bike and golf gloves, garden attire, etc).

I know.. still quite a bit, and I can see another purge in the horizon.. but for right now… hey I’m below 300 pieces, and that was a goal in itself 😉

And what’s leaving the house? Let’s see now… 

closet-purge

1 Dress
8 t-shirts
2 long sleeved t-shirts
2 pants
1 top
3 bras
1 scarf
1 belt
1 pair of flip-flops
1 pair of gym shorts
1 buff
3 pairs of socks
1 bikini top
1 bikini bottom
5 stockings
3 leggings
1 robe
3 long armed shirts

1 pair of dress pants
1 cardigan
1 blazer
1 outdoor jacket
=

That’s 43 items out-the-door! 

Which brings me to the grand total of = 613 so far this year.

PS. I just tallied up all the clothing and shoes I have gotten rid off since I started my “official” deluttering in 2015, and guess what, including this purge, I have more than halved my wardrobe (all of 315 items of clothing and 19 pairs of shoes, have left these premises) 🙂

21:08 – The colors of a rainbow!

2017-21-day-8It’s day eight of this years first 21 day declutter challenge.

It’s been a while (again) since my last post and there is a reason, why I’ve been on the quiet side.

My bestie from Houston (well US altogether) had to come over to Stavanger for a few days for work/meetings/seminar. He added a couple of days to his trip, to hang out with me 🙂

It turned out that there was quite a few people from our Houston office who was going to the same arrangement, so last week was filled with loads of fun, not only hanging out with my best friend but also hanging out with some of my former colleagues from my Houston days.

To clear up the house for the visit, I tucked all my small declutter projects back into cabinets and drawers, and now that I have the house for myself.. it’s time to bring them all back out in the open 😉

I decided to start with one easy task, hoping to get my total past the 500 mark.

Today it’s all about pens and paper!

I collected all my pens and coloring pencils in one “big” pile, and I found out I had a lot. A lot I no longer use, a lot of duplicates and some that was just broken… all in all.. I had way more than I could possible need.

Not only did I have loads of pens and pencils. Turns out I might be a tiny bit of a journal, post it note, paper pad and notebook hoarder as well!

So guess what? I decided to say bye, bye to a few on them.

Where are they going? Let’s just say, I have an awesome neighbor with two kids who will happily take them off my hand 😉

Here we are – 59 pens/pencils

pencils-small

and 24 notebook/post-it pads/journals

notebooks-small

That’s 83 items leaving the house! 

Which brings me to the grand total of = 570 (so far 😉 )

I know I’m taking my own sweet time on this challenge, and at this rate it might be summer before I’m done. But.. you know what? As long as the result is stuff leaving the premises, never to be seen again… I’m good with it taking a while 😉

And hey, you never know.. before I’m done with this challenge, I might be hitting a 1000 (a girl can wish, right) 😉