Microfiber is awesome

Have you ever wiped down a mirror, only to leave behind a bazillion streaks?  I have.  Feels like I’ve done it a bazillion times.  Makes me crazy.  Cray-zay.  So crazy, in fact, that I stopped wiping down mirrors because I couldn’t do it without leaving streaks, no matter what I did.  Can you say eew!?  My mirrors were pretty disgusting.

One day, maybe two years ago, I stumbled upon some microfiber cleaning cloths that are labeled as specifically for glass and mirrors.  I bought two of them, and stored one in the kitchen, and the other in the master bath.  And then promptly forgot about them (you may have read about how I hate to clean).

Fast forward to a few months ago.  It’s unseasonably warm, all our windows are grimy, and the house needs to be aired out.  I don’t want to use a whole roll of paper towels on the windows, and I start to get a little irritating memory scratching at the back of my brain.  I have something for this.  I bought something that would do this job.  I should go look for that thing.

So, I start digging under the kitchen sink, and come up with my two-year-old-but-still-pristine microfiber cloth.  I read the instructions (get it wet with tap water, wring it out thoroughly, and start wiping), and it’s off to the races.  I cleaned the inside and outside of two sets of 7′ tall windows, plus two more sets of glass doors, and the powder room mirror in less than 10 minutes, and all without any streaks.  None.  Not a single streak!

I don’t know how this magical microfiber cloth really works, but I don’t have to, do I?  It just does, and that is good enough for me.  Since the first use, I’ve cleaned all the bathrooms’ mirrors more frequently.  No spots left on these babies, no sir!

What tool have you used that has improved or simplified a household chore for you?


Practicing savoring

Leo Babauta is the author of one of my favorite blogs, zenhabits.net.  I enjoy reading his writing, and I believe that he lives his advice.  Living my advice is something I aspire to do one day.  For now, I’m living my life and writing about what happens.  Slightly less impressive.

Anyhoo… in a couple of recent posts, Leo has been encouraging his readers to savor things on a daily basis, in order to slow down, see more, enjoy more, and get more out of life.

I’m into getting more, so I thought I’d test out one of his suggestions.  Grab a square of dark chocolate, put it in your mouth, and sit there for a moment.  Just sit there, and become aware of the depth of the flavors.  The feel of the chocolate.  Contemplate those that grew the cacao beans, the artisans that crafted the chocolate bar…  Really, you should visit his post, because he has a beautiful way of describing this act that is truly compelling.

Upon reading the post, I immediately dipped into my stash of dark chocolate, whipped out my Godiva 72% Cacao Dark Chocolate bar and snapped off a square.  Then I got a little worried.  What if I didn’t do it right?  What if I couldn’t taste anything more deep than “chocolate”?  I don’t know anything about the people who grew the beans that went into the bar I bought!  What do I do now?!  And then I told myself to shut up.  Just shut up, close your eyes and put the damn chocolate square in your cakehole.

And do you know what?  That was some of the best chocolate I ever tasted in my whole life.  I closed my eyes right there at my desk, in the middle of an open concept office, and didn’t even care who saw me.  I put half of the chocolate square in my mouth, and let it sit on my tongue for a moment, before pressing it up to the roof of my mouth.  It felt smooth, and when it began to melt, it was positively velvety.  The chocolate had a faintly citrusy flavor, maybe orange.  But mostly, it was simply chocolaty-er. When I bit into the chocolate, I noticed that it felt slightly waxy at first, but then it melted immediately, and was soft and gooey.

That moment was rich and sinful and delicious and wonderful.  I did not contemplate the growers.  I did not think about the artisans that crafted the bar, except to think that it was probably not artisans, and more likely a machine that made my bar.  For those 90 seconds, I was living to feel and taste the chocolate.  It was altogether a spectacular moment, and one I am eager to repeat!

What is something you can savor?  Come back and tell me what you did and how it went!

Why, hello there!

Hi. My name is Krys.

Allie Doodle

I’m a wife, a mom, and a full-time employee.  I am always – always – looking for ways to improve.  Improve myself, improve my home, improve how I work, improve how I live.  Sometimes I even look for ways to improve my husband.  Shhh – don’t tell him I said that.

I’m a bit of an over-sharer.  I can’t tell you how many times I saw that look on a friend’s face (you know the one… “um, did you really tell me that?”) that tells me I probably should have kept a particular tidbit to myself.  I’m going to turn the filter off here, though.  Since it’s just you and me, I figure I’m probably in a safe place.

Right now, I’m in the middle of a few improvements that I’ll be over-sharing about here.

Losing weight

I’ve lost 30 pounds since June 2012, and my plan is to lose another 20 pounds before June 2013.  I track calories on myfitnesspal.com.  I’ve been in a bit of a plateau since early December, and need to get back into my workout routine to kick start things again.

Gaining fitness

I started running in July 2012 with the goal of running a 5k.  I met that goal in November 2012.  My new goal is to do the New York Spartan Sprint in June and not die.  I also started lifting weights late last year, though I stopped going after Thanksgiving.  Gotta get back to it before I start losing muscle mass.

Finding zen

I don’t literally mean finding something called zen.  I don’t really even know what zen is.  I’ll look it up one day and will write all about what I learn.  What I really mean is that I want to get to a place where I’m no longer searching for a better everything.  I think that a healthy desire to improve is a good thing.  But what I live with every day is an obsessive need to change myself.  I’m not truly happy with me, and therefore I spend an inordinate amount of time searching for ways to change.

Organizing and cleaning my home

Having a four year old is not good for maintaining a clean, organized home.  Though, neither is having two dogs and a husband.  If I’m being perfectly honest, having ME at home is pretty detrimental to maintaining a clean, organized home.  I’m really fighting my own nature on this one.

Becoming more productive at work

I’m battling burnout at work.  There is just too much to do, and not enough time to do it.  I’m positively overwhelmed, and I’m searching for just the thing that’s going to help me snap out of it.  I’m a meeting planner for a medical association, and my primary job is to plan and execute the organization’s annual scientific meeting.  The meeting takes all year to plan, and I work on future meetings throughout the year, too.  I need to overcome the overwhelm and really get down to business.