Thursday, December 23, 2010

I have a small obsession...

with glass jars.  I love the shape and weight of them.  I love the cool, smooth feel of the glass in my hands.  They are pure and simple at it's best.  I've been collecting them for years.

I use canning or recycled pasta sauce jars to store beans, rice and popcorn kernels in my pantry.   It gives it the feel of an old country store.

I use jelly jars for holding small amounts of leftover sauces or for mixing my own dry spice blends.  Salad dressing bottles hold vinegar and oils in my spice cabinet.

And then there are our drinking glasses...I actually started buying a certain brand of salsa just for the jar, and now we have a matching set!

Jar candles have the best lids.  When the candle has burned for the last time, I clean out the leftover wax and use these jars for holding cotton balls and swabs in the bathroom.  There is one at the moment that is full of birdseed.  I had a small candle jar with a wooden stopper that is perfect for holding spare change in the car, and it fits in the cup holder!

Jars without lids hold taller items like pens and paintbrushes.  My sewing box wouldn't been complete without a button jar.

I also use them for holding memories...seashells we've collected over the Summers and sand from the beach we visited on our honeymoon. 

So before you toss that glass container in the recycling bin, look for ways to give it a second life in your home.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Simplicity in the kitchen is not about having a gadget for every job, but a few gadgets that do a lot!  One of my favorite tools in my kitchen is the ice cream scoop.

Of course it's perfect for dishing out sundaes, but I also use it for scooping out cookie dough.  No messy hands, just scoop and drop on the cookie sheet. 

With a big family there seems to be a birthday party every month, and an ice cream scoop is perfect for filling the muffin tin.  It keeps batter from dripping all over the pan and each one is measured perfectly. 

Scoops come in various sizes, but I just have the one.  No reason to clutter up the kitchen drawer when you can just fill it by 1/2 or 1/4 to get the amount needed. 
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