5 Ideas and Inspirations for the Week Ahead

Today on Weekend Meanderings my kitchen deep clean and refrigerator reorganization, a classic Gin & Tonic and a couple outfit ideas.

Happy weekend, friends!

It’s Saturday and I’m joining Kim and Elizabeth for Weekend Meanderings.

Our weekly roundup of inspiration and goings on.

This post includes affiliate links for your convenience at no additional cost to you. You can read my full disclosure policy here.

Gin & Tonic cocktail sitting on garden raised bed ledge.

We have radishes!

No tomatoes yet, but as a radish connoisseur, Jim is overjoyed with this garden development.

Just picked radish in garden basket.

I met baby Dylan this week and had a nice visit with her mom and grandma.

She slept like this the entire time I was there and made the cutest little sounds.

Woman sitting on sofa next to sleeping baby girl.



You know how one thing leads to another? Or ten others? That’s what happened this week when a problem with our freezer drawer led to a trouble shooting expedition, led to emptying and cleaning the freezer, led to emptying and cleaning the refrigerator, and finally cleaning the entire kitchen.

I started by dusting the walls, moldings and kick space under the cabinets with a long armed Swiffer. What did we do before Swiffers? Then I cleaned all the painted cabinetry using a couple drops of dishwashing soap in a bowl of warm water … and two microfiber cloths. One to wash and one to dry. It took a long time. If we ever renovate another kitchen remind me to choose flat front cabinetry … fewer places for dust to settle.

Jim was so alarmed by my sudden cleaning frenzy that he fished out the thermometer and tried to take my temperature. Very funny, and offensive, but not entirely unwarranted. After washing all the cabinetry I did the same with our counters and backsplash. I love Murchison-Hume’s all purpose cleaner cleaner in the original fig scent … it smells divine. As does Method’s Glass & Surface Cleaner in mint. I use baking soda in a restaurant style shaker for scrubbing sinks.

Kitchen cleaning products.

After I finished with the cabinets and countertops, I vacuumed the floor and Jim went over it with the steam mop. For some reason steaming the floors has become his thing and I’m not mad about it. He also handles cleaning and polishing our butcher block countertops using Boos mystery oil and board cream. He uses it on our cutting boards too.

My kitchen cleaning essentials ~



And you thought things couldn’t get more exciting …  let’s revisit the root cause of my cleaning extravaganza. Our freezer drawer is getting a lot of ice build up making it hard to close and big pieces of frosty ice coming flying out when it opens. We have a Subzero fridge freezer combo … it’s our third time with this model. And each time it’s had an issue. We refer to it as the Substandard. Why do we keep repurchasing it … that’s another story. I contacted Substandard Subzero for service and learned that we’re out of warranty and a service call is $200. That’s $200 just to show up. The first appointment is several weeks away so I got out the manual and learned that we should be cleaning the condenser every 3-6 months. Oops. That could be the ice build-up issue. We were also overdue to change the water filter. Jim did both. But it appears this has not solved the problem and we’ll be investing in a service call. At least we have a clean kitchen.

How do you organize your refrigerator? I’ve found that using clear bins of various sizes works for me. It’s helpful to categorize smaller items into bins … and it’s easy to slide the bins in and out. On the rare occasion, holidays and such, that I have large items that take up a lot of space, I remove the necessary bins and keep them in the garage until order is restored. I also like the beverage organizers for cans of flavored water and wine or other large bottles. But my favorite thing about this system is opening the refrigerator and seeing organization. Priceless. As you can see, my salad spinner is taking up a lot of room on the top shelf … full of just washed greens from our raised bed garden!

Inside an organized refrigerator.

These are the bins and containers I use to organize our fridge ~

Before ordering organizers it’s important to know your refrigerator’s interior depth. Our fridge is built-in so it’s shallower than most (same goes for counter depth models) and so it requires a shallower bins. What’s that saying about measuring twice and cutting once.


Tuesday night my friend Jane and I went to see Tina: The Tina Turner Musical. It’s playing through August 27th at the Golden Gate Theater in San Francisco and then moves to the Center for Performing Arts in San Jose. You can find the entire North American touring schedule here.

The show is incredible. And incredibly moving … and powerful. The musical arrangements, singing and dancing are exactly what you’d expect … AMAZING. The energy of the entire cast is off the charts. If you lived through the Tina Turner comeback era of the 1980’s you’re familiar with her story and the show addresses it all with jarring depictions of domestic violence. In Ike and Tina’s marriage and the marriage of Tina’s parents. Of course this is an integral part of her story and allows for an even greater appreciation of everything she overcame to achieve her hard won and well deserved superstar status. I walked out of the theater feeling that no one deserved that success more than Tina Turner. If you can, go see this show!

The Tina Turner Musical.

We were in a hurry to get to the show on time and forgot to take pictures. Jim volunteered to be our Uber driver and we tipped him extra to snap a photo when we got home. It was dark, but you do what you can.



Two weeks ago I started a major closet clean out. Major as in serious purge. Last week I took some of my more current things to ReChic, a local consignment boutique. And this week I dropped off donations at the Goodwill and our local Assistant League chapter’s Wayside Inn Thrift Shop. It’s the best thrift shop located in a historic building in Downtown Lafayette. My aunt, who is very involved with the Assistant League in Bellingham, Washington, taught me early on that shopping thrift stores in more affluent areas is the way to strike gold wardrobe-wise. When Auntie Cookie came to town she made a bee-line for the Wayfside Inn. She found so many great pieces there over the years. The Assistance League does so much good work, particularly Operation School Bell.

The Wayfair Inn Thrift Shop in Lafayette.

Pulling together outfits is a lot easier since the purge. It seems counterintuitive, but having fewer pieces in my closet … not to mention being able to see them all … has sparked a little creativity in me. Getting dressed for the theater, or any occasion, would normally result me standing in the closet staring aimlessly and thinking I have nothing to wear. Followed by a panicked trip to buy something new. I’m happy to report I got myself dressed twice this week with pieces from my closet mixed and matched in new ways. Neither outfit is anything special, but pairing things in ways I haven’t before feels so good … it just like wearing something new!

Outfit Collage.

Blazer | T-Shirt | Denim | Earrings | Leopard Flats | Bag

My second outfit triumph this week involved pairing a black, knit Target dress (I bought it last year and it’s no longer available, too bad because its one of my favorites … this is similar) with my Rails chambray shirt tied at the waist and OluKai flip flops.

Black dress and blue shirt on valet pull in closet.

Is this a groundbreaking outfit? No. But I’d never thought of pairing these pieces before. It helped that I could easily see both at the same time in my much less cluttered hanging racks. So I’m feeling pretty good about myself.

Woman's closet clothing racks.



Last night I got back to basics and made classic gin and tonics. Or G&Ts as we say in the business! See my G&T mixing Reel here.

Gin and Tonic Mixing Ingredients.

As with most drinks there are a variety of opinions on how to mix them. I went with 2 oz of gin poured over ice and topped off with tonic water. If you prefer to measure, I’d say 4 oz of tonic water. At least. I’m heavy handed with the tonic, Jim prefers a lighter touch. Do what makes you happy. Garnish with two lime wheels, squeeze the juice of one into the glass first. To be extra festive, adorn with an edible flower!

Gin and Tonic cocktail sitting on raised garden bed ledge.

G&T accoutrements ~


Current favorites ~


And that’s what I have for you this week.

Let’s see what’s inspiring Kim and Elizabeth …



If you missed my last post, you can catch up here.

You’ll find all my weekend roundup posts collected here.

You can also follow along on Instagram and Pinterest.

Any thoughts you’d like to share?

I’d love to hear them and you can drop them in the comments below.

Woman standing on beach under pier.

Cheers from Snowberry!

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  • Always look forward to this Saturday catch all full of interesting things to do and to buy. Your refrigerator is truly a work of art. My challenge is storing the various and sundry specialty condiments needed for various ethnic dishes.

  • Question on cleaning out your wardrobe and size variations:
    What do you do about “heavier” clothes?:)
    I carry my weight in my hips so gaining just 5lbs pushes me from a size 6 to an 8, a S to a M.
    I’m at my ideal weight now…but am hesitant to donate these clothes even tho there are pieces I haven’t worn in awhile.
    This is what’s keeping me stuck on figuring out how to pare down what’s in there!

  • Good morning Juliet!

    It sounds like you have had a busy and productive week. I love a good clean that starts with one thing and leads to a whole house purge and spruce up. I have bookmarked a few of your cleaning tips, I had never thought to use baking soda for the sinks!
    Jim sounds like my husband Bill, we use the same butcher block oil and cleaner and he takes care of all of that. Then he oils the cast iron, sharpens the knives, etc. It is nice to have a helper.
    Sorry about your Sub-Zero, that sounds like a pain. Do you have a home warranty? We have First American Home Warranty and they are great! They cover service calls and repairs.
    Your closet purge has spurred me to do one of my own. I have been slowly going through my closet and winter bins and getting rid of things. Not enough so I am going back through to get rid of some more.
    Baby Dylan is adorable!
    I love your outfits for Fall, they look great. As do you!
    Tina Turner was an amazing woman. I’ve seen her in concert and it was a show like no other. I can only imagine what the musical was like. I will have to see if it is coming out this way.
    Enjoy your edible flowers, lettuce and radishes!
    Have a great weekend.

  • Check out this women owned distillery from Portland, Oregon for some great gin recipes Freeland Spirits – the bottles look amazing and the gins are very tasty.

  • Great Post Juliet! I am jealous that your hubby helps you clean, that you can have a veggie garden without an alarm system, and that you might be wearing a blazer in the near future. But I love you just the same! ❤️

  • Fun post! Sorry about the freezer issue. When a big appliance goes out, it’s always a pain! Expensive and hard to get a good service call these days. Your kitchen is beautiful, and you look pretty classy cleaning it I might add. May have to try your cleaning products. Enjoy your weekend after all your hard work this week!

  • I need your cleaning products for motivation!!! Bravo.
    I’m doing a little free decorating by moving some art and furniture to different places today. But I have hired a handyman to rehang a heavy mirror…that’s just too much for Howard and me. I always remember Jim hanging the mirrors in your bedroom with the blasted D rings. He’s a saint. Happy weekend.

  • Juliet I need to get to my cabinets also. I’m impressed you can do this while wearing a dress!! You look cute. I think I have to order that fig stuff. It sounds like it smells good. I agree. I like all natural products and I like things that also have a nice light scent. I think it’s a good you did this post so many of us don’t spend enough time doing these things and really your cabinets can get ruined if you don’t maintain them. Same with refrigerator looks gorgeous. I think I got some of these organizers last time you shared it and Max loves them.
    The best gift of all is opening the refrigerator and seeing it’s so pretty.. and your cabinets shining!
    The Tina Turner show looks great, so nice you and Jane got to do that. Love the outfits.!! That black dress with that Jean shirt over it is super cute- very California.
    And thanks for all the good inspiration and ideas. I gotta start tackling the refrigerator this morning.
    Hope you have a beautiful weekend Juliet

  • Hi Juliet,
    You and Jim make an outstanding team. As the saying goes, “back to back you can conquer the world.” You must be so pleased you have the cleaning done. BRAVO❣️ So sorry to hear about the Sub-Zero fridge giving you on-going issues. What a a pain in the touché. The fridge is so well organized , makes it so much easier to locate things. We have two in our fridge. Our fridge is much smaller than yours. Your kitchen is gorgeous. Flat cabinets are a big yes for cleaning purposes.
    Dylan is a very pretty baby, cute picture of you both. Very sweet. You and Jim played a big part in making her baby shower so special. You looked so cool.
    The Tina Turner concert that you and Jane attended left a big impression on you. I can see why. Tina Turner was not only a survivor of extremely difficult times she powered through to total success. I grew up with her. A total powerhouse and those legs that went up to her arms. The endless energy and talent. A legend in our time. Happy you got to go, and Jim volunteered to be your Urber driver, what a guy.
    Your veggie/flower garden is growing, looks like it’s flourishing.

  • Be careful on the ladder, I sprained my ankle putting a dust ruffle on my bed, while moving the mattress.
    Getting better, very pretty colors……………

  • You used real tonic in your gin and tonic- that is, one that contains quinine. There are several brands out there and they cost more but are worth it. Also gin is so diverse depending on the ingredients that you have to taste several to find your preferred brand. Try cucumber slices in place of lime for a change and last but not least- good ice makes all the difference in the world. Good clear ice from a real in home ice maker (or purchased) not from your refrigerator’s freezer!

  • Omg! I had the exact same issue with our Fisher Paykel fridge this week! And it turns out I didn’t know the filter needs to be changed every 6 months, D’oh!! At least I have a new contact for the best F-P tech for future kitchen catastrophes

    Love your posts every week, thank you!

    • Oh and I forgot to add my fridge organization tip.
      My husband and I owned a restaurant for many years, he’s a chef so he has a lot of organization tips in a kitchen.
      My favorite fridge one: When you open any cartons or condiments or anything really, use a Sharpie to write the date on the top or side of item. That way you can quickly see how long any particular item has been sitting in the fridge, and toss it or use it up before it goes bad. Cuts down on food waste, too, and it becomes second nature once you start doing it.

  • Hi Kim! Will you come clean out my kitchen? You can stay in the guest cottage! I need to clean out my fridge and freezer so badly! I am not good at throwing things out…. Love your green cabinets! I also need to do a closet clean out. That is definitely on my list! Always love your casual chic outfits! Have a good week!

  • Hi, I’m Juliet … welcome to Make Mine a Spritzer where we talk about all things home décor, classic style and more! I’m so happy you’re here!

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