Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Sink Chronicles: Day 16

Click here for today's baby step

Day 16: Read an Email from Flylady

Creepy...how did they know I had stopped reading the emails? I mostly don't read them because I have to get on my computer to read them because on my phone they get all jumbled up when I open them because of all the links included in the emails. If I open my computer I usually get distracted by facebook, blogs, recipes, new running tracking sites, etc...I'm doing that right now actually!

That's why I usually try to shut down my computer as often as possible so it takes more time to get on it, meaning I'll usually go do something else instead. I guess for the good of the cause I'll go read an email. ;)

One thing I've really liked about having a shiny sink is that when I'm cooking, or washing some fruit to eat, if I drop some food in the sink, I know that it's clean and sanitary enough to just pick it out, rinse it off, and eat it! I know it sounds like a gross concept, but that's just how clean my sink is! ...the kitchen floor, not so much.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Sink Chronicles: Day 15

Click here for today's baby step assignment

Day 15: Make Your Bed

YAY! I like making my bed! It makes the whole room look so much cleaner! I figured this was coming because it was mentioned in the emails from flylady, so I've been practicing. Is that cheating?

It says in the description, "If you will do this as soon as your feet hit the floor you are less likely to forget it." I have two problems with that. Problem number 1: My feet hit the floor multiple times in the wee hours of the morning, and when they hit the floor for the final time in the morning, I am usually on the run to get crying Joshua out of bed. Problem number 2: A lot of times, our bed is still occupied by a sleeping Dave when I get out of bed. He seizes the opportunity to cocoon himself in the remaining covers until he gets up. I'll have to figure out when to fit it into my routine so that I don't forget it. Any suggestions?

Sink Chronicles: Day 14

Click here for Day 14's baby step.

Day 14: Read an Essay that Kelly Wrote

First beef: why isn't the description more accurate? It should say "Learn How to Use a Calendar" in my opinion. Ok, the only assignment for Day 14 was to continue doing what I've been doing, and read this essay about how to use a calendar. I currently have 8 calendars in my house. I like calendars. I like that they are art that I can change monthly, I like that I can glance at them and tell what day it is. I like that I can write things on them. 7 of my calendars are just art for me. I have one in my bedroom that's a dry erase calendar for scheduling things. One thing I don't like about it is that I can only schedule one month at a time.

At work I used to have one of those giant desk calendars to write everything on. I didn't take it with me when I quit though. I should have. Today, inspired by the essay above, which I actually read last week but hadn't blogged about yet, I bought this calendar to replace the dry erase one. I'm excited for it to come on Wednesday!

Now on to today's (Day 15) baby step assignment!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Sink Chronicles: Where Did You Run Off To?

How is one supposed to keep up a routine if one doesn't have a routine life? Does anyone work 9 to 5 anymore? What happens when you go on vacation, say...to Lake Tahoe...again?

Well, I thought about bringing my sink shining supplies to my grandparents' house at Lake Tahoe, but I didn't know how they would feel about me shining their sink. Plus, it's kind of hard to keep a sink shiny when there is a house full of people who are used to putting their used dishes in the sink.

I tried hinting to my family members the first couple of days every time I put dishes into the dishwasher, saying things like "Hey, look! It's an empty dishwasher! what a great place to put my dirty dishes!" or "Look at this! This dirty dish fits RIGHT HERE in this dishwasher! AMAZING!" For some reason it didn't stick.

I didn't want to lose the habits I had created just because I was at someone else's house, so I tried to keep up with the things that I could. I brushed and flossed my teeth every night. I got up and ate breakfast and got dressed in the morning. I emptied the clean dishwasher in the morning. I tried to keep the kitchen cleaned up. I did Joshua's night routine (diaper, [bath], pjs, nurse, story, bedtime).

Well, now I'm back, and I'm hoping to get back into the swing of things and continue with the baby steps. Tomorrow is going to be Day 14! Dave cleaned off a few of my hot spots while I was out of town, so I'm hoping they'll remain cleaned off with my hot spot attacks.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Sink Chronicles: Day 13

Click here for today's assignment description.

Day 13: Pick One of Kelly's Missions and Do It

I've been reading about "Kelly's Missions" in the Flylady email digest that I get every day, but I haven't looked more into it than that. Here is where Kelly posts her missions. This week she's focusing on the entry way and dining room. The baby step description said to pick one of the missions, so I picked Thursdays mission to clean up the things that accumulate near the front door like shoes, jackets, bags, etc. Only in our house, it seems to be computer parts that accumulate near the front door. In order to move the computer parts, I had to make room for them upstairs near the office.

Two birds with one stone! I de-cluttered upstairs outside the office for 15 minutes, getting rid of old boxes, and stacking the leftover computer parts neatly. Then I went downstairs again and moved what I could upstairs. I know it's just moving clutter from one area to another, but it's so much closer to where it goes than where it was before.

With those things gone from the entry we actually HAVE an entryway again! There is still more to clean up, but isn't there always?

Friday, August 5, 2011

Sink Chronicles: Day 12 (Pictures from yesterday)

First, here are some of my hot spots all cleaned off:

My pocket unloading station is all cleaned off! I even put away the spare change!

Here's my bedside table all cleaned off. I need to figure out what to do with all those cords, especially as Joshua gets older. The main problem is that I move the baby monitor all over the house throughout the day, and the lamp has a switch on the cord, so it needs to be accessible. Ideas?

Here is my pantry "before". I actually forgot to take a picture before I started doing anything, so see how at the bottom there's a little blank space, and there aren't grocery bags tumbling out? They used to be there before I started.

I threw away all the expired and stale food, gave away some of the food, and threw some other things away (including a broken dust pan...I had 4 dust pans...how many do I really need?! I usually vacuum!). I also put a lot of the canned foods up with my food storage.

Here's the "after" picture. It's still pretty full, but now it's organized and I can actually tell what's in there. I showed Dave where everything was, but I still am planning on making little signs.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Sink Chronicles: Day 12

Click here for today's baby step assignment.

Day 12: Delete All the Emails From Flylady

I liked this assignment. It was nice and simple. I got it done in about 30 seconds.

Then I had the rest of the day...why couldn't I get this assignment on one of my busier days? So I tackled the pantry, in 15 minute intervals of course. I'd do one or two shelves and then take a break. I threw away all the expired food, put some of the unopened food up with my food storage, gave away food we didn't eat but was still good food, cleaned the shelves, and re-organized. It helped that there was once-upon-a-time a system in place. I just restored that system.

It is amazing how de-cluttering can help you find treasures. I found some delicious food I didn't even know that I had. It made me want to plan out menus according to the food that has been hiding in my pantry, but I didn't want to burn myself out, so I saved that for another day. I also saved the fridge for another day. Yikes. That's the stinky stuff that I don't want to open.

As a result, we had pesto alfredo pasta and peas tonight. I'll post pictures of the de-cluttering job tomorrow. I have to go to bed now!

Sink Chronicles: Day 11

Yesterday was Day 11. Click here for yesterday's assignment.

Day 11: Add Inspirational Page to Your Control Journal

Honestly? I didn't do this. I'm not one for "inspirational phrases." I think it's cheesy. I don't have any quotes up in vinyl on any of my walls, I don't have a favorite saying, and I don't have little tiles and blocks with my favorite song lyrics on them sitting around my house. I'm not going to start collecting phrases and quotes to "help me be organized" because all it will do is add one more thing I have to do to my list. Isn't the point to help me get things done? Not spend my time searching for cool phrases.

Ok, I lied. I do have ONE little tile type thing that is sitting on my bookshelf with a quote on it. You're going to laugh at this one. It was given to me by a friend for my birthday and it has a phrase that really describes me to a T. Are you ready for it? "Organized people are just too lazy to look for things."

Oh the irony.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Sink Chronicles: Day 10 (back from the dead!)

I disappeared for a few days...did you miss me? I missed me. I was sick as a dog, out of town, and tackled by hormones. Today I feel back from the dead, although not yet 100%...does that make me a zombie?

Click here for today's assignment.

Day 10: You Can Do Anything for 15 Minutes

I actually really like today's assignment. If you haven't noticed, I'm a little A.D.D. (example: all the projects I've started, and haven't finished, all the tangents in my life) so I like to search for ways to help me focus better. In high school I took the generic of Ritalin for a while, but it didn't help much and just made me grumpy, so I decided to figure out ways to focus without the assistance of drugs. This timer idea really helped me get things accomplished.

Honestly I haven't been timing myself for the 2 minute hot spot attack and the 5 minute room rescues before, because I just do it for a little while, and that works fine. Today I timed myself doing things with a timer on my cell phone so that I knew I had to stay doing ________ until the timer beeped. I noticed that my attention span has shortened to about 5 minutes. I'd check the timer thinking it should almost be done, and only 5 minutes had passed.

On the baby step description for today it gives the example to go gather up garbage for 15 minutes and take it to the trash outside and then take a break for 15 minutes. That's what I did. I grabbed one of the many computer boxes floating around, took it up to the office (messiest room in the house), and emptied trash cans, dug under the desks for garbage, and attacked the shredder (which always gets overfilled and jammed because someone forgets to check the tub under it...coughDavecough...not that I'm pointing any fingers.) ;) Don't worry, there are many things I forget to do, too. My timer went off in the middle of the shredder ordeal, so I finished that up and took the box of trash out to the can. Then I read my book for 15 minutes.

I've noticed it's just as hard to stop working when you get into the swing of things as it is to stop relaxing when you're reading a good book. I was able to fit one more 15 minute timer job (folding laundry) in before Joshua woke up from his nap. Unfortunately a whining, teething, hungry baby doesn't you do 15 minutes of anything without interruption. I guess I'll be doing this baby step during naptime.