Oh-So-Easy Fridge Mats (DIY)

Wow!  It’s been a while since I’ve posted.  This April marked my blog’s first anniversary.  Thanks to all of you reading my rants and raves on the One Whimsy Housewife blog!!

I have a rave for you today.  Pinterest has once again given me a winner.  (There have been quite a few duds that I’ve tried, too.)

Have you seen these fun things called fridge coasters?  They are so cute and really practical.  Fridge Coasters are mats that line the shelves in your fridge.  So, when you have a spill, instead of cleaning the entire fridge, just remove the coaster and wash it.  Genius!

But…they are not permanent.  They are a cardboard-like material that soaks up the spill, but can only be washed a few times then you throw them away.  A consumable product…great for Fridge Coaster…but not great for me and my wallet.

I found this simple and inexpensive idea from It’s An Organized Chaos blog.  She takes flexible plastic placemats and cuts them to size, then lines her fridge shelves with them.  How easy is that?!

I’ve been doing some spring cleaning, and cleaning the fridge was my weekend project this past Sunday.  Baby steps, people, baby steps.  It’s about all I can manage with a full-time job and an almost 3-year-old.

Fridge Before Here is the lovely before picture of my refrigerator.  Sorry, but this is after I cleaned it.  I’m not quite brave enough to share my family’s messiness with you just yet…  It does make me realize that I need to do some serious grocery shopping.

A few weeks ago, I stumbled upon some of these plastic placemats at Target.  Originally they were about $2.50 each, not bad.  But they were on sale for $1.88!  Even better!  They only had a couple in each color, but that was okay with me.  I only have four shelves, but I bought 5 placemats, just in case I messed one up.


I took a tape measure and measured the shelves.  Cut the placemats to size (lengthwise) with a pair of scissors. Then placed them on the shelves.  They don’t fit perfectly.  There is still a half-inch or so of glass showing at the back of the shelf, but I’m okay with that.

Fridge After 1 Fridge After 2

I love how it adds some whimsy to my fridge.

Maybe it will inspire me to keep it clean!

One thing that I’m not thrilled about is that it makes the lower shelves pretty dark.  The light doesn’t filter through the plastic very well.  Since this was so cheap and simple, I don’t feel bad about trying other colors and options!

Cost breakdown – 5 placemats at $1.88 each= $9.40!

Like my Facebook page and share your weekend projects with me!



Friday Funny

The innocence of vintage advertisements make me chuckle.  The good ‘ole days when your doctor recommended Lucky brand cigarettes, women vacuumed in heels and pearls, and no one thought twice about giving the baby cocaine teething tablets.  I threw in a few of my favorite Anne Taintor images as well!!









Have a great weekend!

Clean Makeup Brushes Like a Pro!

A simple question for you:  When was the last time you cleaned your makeup brushes?  Some of you might be asking, “I’m suppose to clean those?!”  Oops!

Makeup brushes aren’t cheap and if you are like me, then you use yours almost everyday.  After a while, the build-up of makeup starts turning eye shadow colors into mud, your foundation begins to streak, and powder gets clumpy.  Not good.  The brushes easily build up with dirt, oils, bacteria (yuck!) and of course…makeup!  So, to keep your investment in tip-top shape, you need to maintain them, and that means cleaning them.

As a professional artist whose favorite medium is paint, I clean quite a few brushes.  Although, most of them are paint brushes.  I have a specific way I clean my artist’s brushes to keep the natural hair bristles nice and soft.  This extends the life of the brush, plus, makes paint glide on smoothly.  Now, why wouldn’t you want the same thing for your makeup brushes?

Dirty Brushes!

I use these brushes everyday (listed from left to right in the above picture, but not particularly in this order):

Whether you use synthetic or a natural hair bristles, you can use this cleaning method on both.

So, let’s get our hands dirty and our brushes clean!!

Tools you will need:

  • A clean plate

  • Olive Oil (the secret ingredient…it keeps the bristles soft)

  • Baby Shampoo (or any mild hand soap will work, too)

STEP 1:  Start by adding equal parts of olive oil and baby shampoo to a clean plate.

STEP 2:  Dip your brush into both the olive oil and shampoo and swirl around until all the bristles are coated with both.

STEP 3: Now comes the messy part.  Take your brush to the sink and wet it under running water.  Use the sink or your hands (my preferred tools) to work the oil and shampoo into a good lather.

STEP 4:  Then rinse really well.  While rinsing, hold your brush so that the bristles are pointing down towards the sink.  This helps keep water out of the metal piece (called the ferrule).  If water is allowed to sit and dry in this part of the brush, it breaks down the glue that holds the bristles in place.  Water + Ferrule = No Bristles.

I usually have to repeat steps 2-4 a few times to get all of the makeup out.  While rinsing, squeeze the bristles from the ferrule to the end of the bristles to get them clean.

STEP 5:  Once the water runs clear and you don’t see anymore soap or makeup, squeeze all of the excess water from the bristles.  Use a paper towel to dry up some of the water and help shape them, always moving from ferrule to the end of the bristles.   It’s best if you can let them dry with the bristles facing down, but I usually just leave mine flat like this.  24 hours is my preferred drying time, but overnight will work, too.

Cleaning once a week is best, but I understand that isn’t realistic for some people.  At least try to fit it in once a month.

Wasn’t that easy?  Now go clean those brushes!!!

Scratches in Your Porcelain Sink? Meet Your New Best Friend!

Being the owner of a ranch-style home, built in the early 1960’s, it’s easy to say that parts of our house have seen better days.  We have done some minor cosmetic changes to the kitchen, like paint the walls and cabinets, new appliances, lighting and sink fixtures.  The sink, however, has not been replaced.  I have always liked the look of a pretty white porcelain kitchen sink.  The down-side to having one is the fact that they always get scratched and scuffed.

The stainless steel cookware we use always seem to leave scratches in the sink.  I always assumed it was just something I was going to have to live with…until, yesterday!  While browsing around my favorite blog sites a few days ago, I found this tip from One Good Thing by Jillee on how to make your scratched dishes look like new again.  She demonstrates how she uses a scrub to get rid of the scratches on her white dishes.

I don’t have white dishes, but I do have a white scratched sink.  I have to admit, I’m a little obsessive about cleaning my sink.  Water spots on the chrome, coffee and tea stains, and dried on food drive me crazy!  I like to wake up to a clean shiny sink every morning.  I do a load of dishes every evening and then scrub my sink.  So I was extremely excited to give this a try!

So…let me introduce you to your kitchen sink’s new best friend!

Bar Keepers Friend

I visited the Bar Keepers Friend’s website and found quite a few tips.  I saw that they recommend using the scrub on porcelain.  So, I decided to try it on my embarrassing kitchen sink.  It worked like magic!  I bought the powdered version I found in the cleaning aisle of my grocery store next to the Comet & Ajax scrub.

In the before picture you can see the coffee and tea stains around the drain.  I first cleaned those with my favorite bleach cleaner and it was white again in no time.  I then rinsed the sink REALLY well.

Here’s what you will need:

  • rubber gloves
  • a sponge or soft scrubbing pad (I use the “blue Scotch Bright sponge”)
  • Bar Keepers Friend scrub.

I put on my gloves, sprayed down my sink with water and got my sponge wet.  I then sprinkled the cleaner all over the sink.  With a little elbow grease it started to form a paste and then it suds up a little.  Then the scratches started disappearing!

It’s really so simple.  Once they were gone I just rinsed the sink really well, and stood back and admired my beautiful work!!  I don’t think this is a permanent fix, but this product is definitely staying in my cleaning arsenal!

The pictures speak for themselves!

Just trying to make life a little bit easier…

Tip Junkie handmade projects
mop it up mondays

Spring Cleaning Checklist (FREE printable)

Ahhhh…spring is springing, birds are chirping (too early in the morning I might add), and buds are blooming.  As I gaze out my hazy windows to view the budding trees and flowers I realize I can hardly see anything!  It’s time for some SPRING CLEANING!!  I look around our humble abode and I’m a little over-whelmed by the list that starts piling up in my head.  “Windows, baseboards, clutter in drawers and cabinets, garage, garage sale…how will I price everything? Can I borrow a few tables?  Who will watch R while I’m having the sale?  WAIT, WAIT, WAIT!!!”  I think I got a little side-tracked.  This whole thing is supposed to be about spring cleaning, right?  I realize that I need a plan of action…and a written list (I absolutely lurve lists!)

So…I start by writing my thoughts down and I realize that this list of tasks will take me a full year to complete, not just spring!  How can I make this into manageable tasks that I can stick to?  Hubs and I already do a daily & weekly cleaning (ok, mostly me, but he does help some), but there are always a few things that get overlooked never get done.  Things like ceiling fans, mini blinds and the dreaded windows.  So, I make a list of the things that never make it to my weekly agenda.

Here’s my Spring Cleaning Checklist.

Now this doesn’t include things like dusting, cleaning toilets and showers, sweeping and mopping, but I’m sure you are already aware of those necessary evils.  Okay, now that I have a list, I need a plan…

THE PLAN:  I’m going to give myself 4 weeks to get all of this done.  I work full-time during the week and I do my daily chores after R goes bed, except for the floors…I save those for the weekends.

Let’s break this down into manageable bites:

  • Week 1:  Foyer, hallway, porch and walkway
  • Week 2: Kitchen
  • Week 3: Living room and bathrooms
  • Week 4: Bedrooms
Here is some inspiration for WEEK 1:
Beautiful Linen Closet

There’s the plan!  I’d love to hear your ideas and tips for spring cleaning, so leave me a comment!!  Check back later, I am hoping to post some before/after photos of my success…