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Kiddies Go – kids helping clean up

22 Feb

Sometimes I find a lot of things on the floor…

 

…including my kids….

They tend to leave things ALL over the house ….

and it becomes simply an impossible task to carry each child’s items back to where it belongs.

Kids don’t generally clean up what they throw out or leave behind  – unless you MAKE them do it. Well, mine anyway…

Some claim they are too small, so they go on strike…….

and they may have a point.

But, kids can be helpers in the house too, to keep the house more organised and tidy.

They just need a little help. And something to make it a little more tangible other than just mom’s nagging !

Today I found these at Costco.

Got one in the colour of each child’s room.

I thought they were pretty dandy!

So, what to do with them?

I think they will be pretty handy.

Here’s what I plan to do.

Park them in the room you are busy cleaning up. Throw each kids’ belongings in their own cart and later when they are home…they can have the responsibility to get all the things in their own cart back to where it belong.

You can make them pick up their own toys and fill their own carts..but the problem is they are usually at school when most of the cleaning up happens !

They have wheels, are lightweight and easy carry along so little ones have no excuse ! They are pretty and durable..so it perfectly fits the criteria of “form meets function”.

Each child has his/ her own so it is easy to point out who is doing their bit and who not..and consequences/ rewards can be given based on empty/ overloaded carts !!

Find them at Costco

Kiddies Go ! Hooray ! Go Kiddies !!

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Ring Ring…..and Radiation

7 Nov

Today I’m on about phones !

Yes – one of those VERY functional must-have items in the house but very often not fun to look at or use..

Does BORING come to mind when you think of your own phone?

And since this blog is so much about combining function with beauty, I have something to share with you …well we’ll see later if we can really call it “beauty”…but my point is:

I have found that using the phone as a little decor item is a minor detail that goes a long way to enhance the ambience in your house to show that you are paying attention to the little things!

To underscore my point I will show you a few of the phones that recently, and not so recently, made their way into our home!

The phone in the lounge is the more sophisticated, expensive and stylish phone. I love talking on this phone. It is like putting on a designer jean..it just fits better, gives you pleasure and you don’t know why. We got it 12 years ago, it has never outdated and it enhances the look of the room… it is a little expensive to tuck away in a back corner, bedroom or office unless you have the luxury of spending that much on a phone that nobody will see or enjoy. So, I showcase mine.

It is a Bang & Olufsen and it is yellow – for the simple reason – it makes a statement and it does not actually need to blend in with any given decor, but it also does not stand out a sore eye if you decide to change the colours of the room. It simply then becomes an object on its own.

I think the phone is just more pleasing to the eye than what a regular phone would be. It helps me create a more polished look on the coffee table, rather than having just the plain phone.

 

versus

Spot the difference? I certainly do. Do you agree with me on the difference of functional phone vs decorative piece?

I admit that a B&O is an expensive item and you do it when the opportunity comes… but there are many inexpensive ways to achieve decorative results with your phone.

This phone hangs on the kitchen wall.

It takes all the leftover coins that lies around in the house – just a gimmick , you don’t really need to pay to make a call like some people thought! – but it is fun to use …The kids actually take interest in answering and on top of that it adds character to the kitchen. The kitchen is in black and white and I used the phone as one of the few red items I place in the kitchen to brighten up the black and white.

Then there is the really, really horrible phone that the kids picked ?! Yes – I agreed to buy it, since it stands on their homework desk and they think it is really cool and jump to get to it first…the eyes light up when it rings. It was really cheap but it works and since it fits in with the black and white colour scheme of the room, I got my arm twisted and gave in. Why not ? I did after all start this “let’s have fun with phones” journey.

No, it is not still part of the Halloween decorations.

Yes, I agree –  it is horrible. But it was cheap and it actually works.

Warning – too many of these “wacky” phones can indeed be a decorative disaster in your house, so do be careful where you place them ?!

But here is the REAL phone kicker that I want to get to today…

Earlier this week my husband came home with the latest of our gimmicky phone collection and hence sparked the idea for this post!

An iclooly phonestand!

It is a phonestand for a mobile phone (cellular phone as known elsewhere).  Does it really “add” to the decor…well, it fits in (if it does not meet that basic requirement, it will NEVER make it into my house !!) …but not necessarily enhance the room decor…and it might even be a little of a hassle….

So why then have it?  There are many reasons to use it..according to the box….

but here is the great benefit !!! In case you missed it in the last line…

It cuts down radiation by 96 % …

Now come on – we all pretend as if we don’t quite believe that story about the radiation.

Why? It might just mean we have to cut down on using our cellphones..and oh my…what a life changing moment that would be??!!! But secretly we all, or well definitely me, do think about that when I read a report on what possible effects constant use of our cellphones might cause. Like this one – Warning

There are many times that I use my i-phone in the house, even though there is a normal phone around….just easier, just habit….

So, I fell for it ! It now stands on my desk and has proofed to be quite convenient during the past few days that I have used it ! I can speak on the phone while looking up contacts or send text messages, it is charging while being on there …. great !

Proudly presenting my i-phone on its’ iclooly stand…

So, if you’re interested in this phone, check their site – iclooly

That’s my story on phones.

I ask you again – have you converted to downright functional when it comes to phones??

So, a little challenge from me… when you need to have fun next time – don’t go buy new shoes or a bag…go buy a phone. One that you can keep for years and years..or even just for a small while to make you smile.

It will give you pleasure – it will not break like a vase, it could be a talking point, it could make your room pretty (or horrifying…like our skull phone)…all I beg of you…

MAKE SURE THAT:

– it fits in with your colour scheme or it makes a statement on its own

– it fits in with the general ambience and use of the room ( do not put the “payphone” with your designer couch or the skull phone in the kitchen!)

– it does not become tacky and start to clash with the furniture to create a sore eye…

– it is something that you can keep for years and years if it is expensive like a Bang & Olufsen or that it is really cheap if you want to throw it in the bin when the kick is over like the skull

HAVE FUN !!!

But – the question of the day – what do you think of the radiation theory?? Is it true? Does it scare you? Does it make you use your phone less? Are you happy to see there are possible ways in which you can cut down the risks??…or perhaps an easier question…are you going to consider buying a phone next time that enhances your decor in the house? Come on –  join the conversation.

Till I ring again..

Ilze

The CLOCK is ticking…

29 Sep

Time is not standing still. And while I am trying to figure out the technical details of setting up my blog, I am missing out great opportunites to start cranking away with posting! So, I decided to go right ahead and let the technical detail sort itself out later.

Speaking of the time ticking reminds me of the charm of the clocks behind it and the details that goes into picking the right clock for the right space.

What do you consider when buying a clock – form…function…both?!

For me….I love buying a clock that appeals to me emotionally, but I also think about its’ purpose and its’ place. Some really fun clocks caught my eye but simply would not work in any of my spaces ! Oh…and beware the boring “tells you nothing but the time” version ! When a clock becomes part of the room’s decor, it adds so much more than just being the ticker and you can immediately tell somebody gave it some thought ! Clocks bring character and charm to a room and should definitely be used to make a statement !

This desk clock I bought recently for the kids’ homework table. It clicks over every second and I intentionally placed it on my son’s side to help him snap out of dreamworld when he gets a little distracted in front of his computer as he tends to loose track of time. On top of that – they think it’s fun to watch it tick over.

Also – if you have a painted wall,  a desk clock is a nice option to avoid yet another hole in a wall, especially if it is black like in this room… a nightmare to fill if you decide to re-arrange the room later.

In the mornings the kids have to catch a bus – almost like catching a train. Ohhhhh… the charm of the OVERSIZED station clock. ALWAYS a winner – everywhere…but in my hallway especially purposeful. I placed it where the kids do last minute things before leaving the house in the morning – packing backpacks, putting on shoes….loosing track of what time has passed since leaving the kitchen.


It is important that it is SO BIG that they simply can’t miss the time …so that they..yes, guessed it- don’t miss the bus !!!

My Office clock is not so easy to read – but it doesn’t matter so much. In this instance it was more important to have a funky clock than a easily readible one. I just needed to get a general idea of the time while being in that room when I am not in front of the computer. When I got busy on the computer, I use the computer screen clock to keep an eye on time.


My most important “Skype relatives”   live in 2 timezones very close to each other and it is really confusing sometimes….so I have put up these clocks in the kitchen so I can always be aware of what would be a good time to call them.  Having the clocks with their times on my kitchen wall also reminds me of them very often and seeing the clocks on the wall often triggers some thought of ” I wonder what they are doing right now?!” – oh yes – lunchtime over there !


For fun – I stencilled the name of the countries on the wall around the clock !

But the one with the local time is bigger than the rest (yes – that great IKEA clock that works in so many rooms – I love it !) – because the little one can not read yet and so she knows that she needs to only look on the big one for the local time…and not get confused with 3 clocks same size, different time.

I do not have ANY clocks in the lounge area or the dining room. This is also my motto at our holiday home. Ultimately the purpose of a clock is to keep an eye on the time. When you need to BE somewhere on time…or go to bed on time….Sometimes people hang a clock on a wall, simply because they have a spare one or think – every room needs a clock…but tend to forget that it might be better to NOT have one – if that is what your aim is for that room.


When you have guests, you want them to stay…to have a good time….to forget about the world and their worries and the constant race against time. When a guest’s eye catches a clock on the wall and realize the time – they will often say “Oh my – look at the time – we should be going ! ” And that could end a perfectly good evening at a point where you still had your best chocolates and coffee to serve…

Next time this happens when you were still having a good time and was hoping everybody would stay little longer – you will think of this post ! Have you ever been at a dinner where that has happened? A sudden – oops, it’s late, gotta go !

(If your guests really overstay…just  lead them into the next room where you have a clock ! Problem solved.)

The placement of the clock is very important – the clock in my bathroom was behind my back… I endlessly ended up either having spent too much time already in the tub…..or annoyingly realized 5 times that I bent over backwards unneccessarily since I had more time on hand. That really disturbs a relaxing time in the bath and needless to say – I moved it over to the other wall !  So, hang that clock to be in view from where you will be watching it most….not just where the empty space on the wall is.

A few helpful hints next time you go buy a clock ..consider:

  1. Will it fit the colour scheme, the style and the ambience of the room you are buying it for?
  2. If you don’t have a specific room for it, try to pick one that will allow enough flexibility to work in various style rooms or that will change with the decor when time comes for a re-vamp.
  3. Does the size correlate with how important it is to notice the actual time? (remember the big clock for little eyes in need of catching the bus!)
  4. How readible should the numbers be ? – is exact, on the minute time required or just a general idea of the time – in which case you can really go for that funky, crazy clock
  5. Does the activity in that room require a reminder of time – if not – go spend that money on beautiful candles for the room of leisure rather than a time checker !!
  6. And when you finally drill that hole in the wall – make sure to place it at a “most viewed from” angle – not just any wall. You might regret if not.

Let your clock WOW your WALLS !!

And please remember to let me in on your clock secrets….

Do you replace clocks like you do with old furniture or do you put them up even if their time has long gone passed?

Do you a favourite clock that you have had for years and that just goes everywhere you move? Or do you have a special childhood memory from the clocks in your parents’ house?

Or have you never given your clocks that much thought…..

Ilze


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