Getting ahead of the things that make me fall behind

I had a lightbulb moment the other day. Sort of  a revelation. My mind was spinning all morning trying to figure out why I struggle so much with keeping up the house. Well, I didn’t figure it all out, but in the process of all the mind spinning, I realized that I should focus on some of the things that seem to have a domino effect in my day.

Like dinner. I struggle with getting dinner ready on time.

So I thought about it and backtracked through a typical day.

When it’s time to start dinner, I can’t just start cooking. First I have to wash any pots,  pans, and knives I might need to use. And I might need to clear out at least one side of the sink. And clear/clean some counter space. And find the ingredients – including the ones that are still in their grocery bag on the floor left from a few days ago.

This is why it takes me so long to make dinner!

Then the table needs to be cleared so that we can eat. And when dinner is done, the dishes all get piled up in the sink with the rest of the dishes from the day, because the dishwasher has clean dishes in it that were never put away. 

After that we need to rush through homework and getting the kids in bed, which usually ends up being late because dinner started late.

Then the kitchen gets cleaned….or at least the dishes…usually. And then there’s laundry, and I have to check email and my blog, right? I get to bed too late.

So if I can put away the clean dishes early in the day, then the dirty dishes throughout the day should be able  to go right into the dishwasher. This helps with both the dishes-piled-up-in-the-sink problem and the clearing the counter/table problem!

I should be able to actually start cooking dinner sooner, which should help the evening routine to go smoother, etc, etc! I know, it won’t always work perfectly, but I think if I can get ahead of the dishes thing by simply emptying the dishwasher early in the day, that will ultimately help dinner to be ready on time!

Check it out!

Of course I have known before that this would be a good and helpful thing, but I don’t think I realized what a big impact it could make on my whole day. I know for some of you this is a ridiculously obvious thing, but for me…I needed a lightbulb moment!

What other things help you get ahead of the crazy?

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Project: Simplify: Getting things OUT the door and paper sorting

This is the last week of Project: Simplify over at Tsh’s blog, Simple Mom. And this week we get to pick whatever project/hot spot we want! Sweet!

I was really tempted to pick a new spot (I have plenty that need decluttering!), but I decided the best thing would be to finish up some of what I have already started.

Tsh’s post announcing the hot spot is really good. I felt like she must have read my blog and she was speaking to me on several points, especially what she said about working quickly.

So I picked 2 projects from previous hot spots:

1. Actually get the clothes, shoes, and toys that were bagged and boxed up from weeks 1 and 3 OUT of the house!!

I know my son looks like he is in pain, but really he is just saying cheeeeeeeeeeeeese.

Why is that last step of decluttering so hard for me? I think at least part of it is deciding what exactly to do with it. Should I give it to a friend? Who? Should I donate? Where? Should I sell some of it? How? I need to just make a decision and take action!

Theoretically, this should not take much time once I make a decision! I think having the deadline of doing it this week will help!

2. Sort the rest of the paper clutter that I gathered.

I’m not saying that I’m going to get it all filed and taken care of this week, but I want to at least sort the 3 containers of very miscellaneous papers. What I learned from the one container I sorted in week 2, is that most if it can be recycled and doesn’t need to stay in my house, sitting around causing me stress.

The 3 containers to sort:

Gabe really likes to be included, as you can see!

And I still have my sorting boxes all set up, with papers there waiting for new paper friends to join them:

There's Gabe, snuggling with the shred box 🙂 I love that boy!

 Are you working on a decluttering project this week?

Do you have a hard time getting decluttered stuff out of the house?

I always like to hear your advice/ideas, too!

As usual with this project, I hope to post results on Friday or Saturday!


Project: Simplify: I’m doing it!

Tsh over at Simple Mom is doing a decluttering project called Project: Simplify and I’m going to join in! She is picking one hot spot a week (for 5 weeks) for us to declutter and organize.

This is just the kind of thing I need to stay motivated and inspired! There is something very motivating to me about doing a project alongside someone else. I always work better that way!

So, even though I’m really working on my own, knowing there are bunches of other ladies all over the world doing the same thing really helps me! And there’s an accountability part with before and after pictures!

The first thing she challenged us to do was to develop a family purpose statement. It totally makes sense to me that my home should follow along with our family’s priorities and goals. We may want to flesh it out a bit more, but here is what we are starting with:

 As a family we will seek to glorify God by enjoying Him through our thoughts, words, and actions.

And I think my five reasons for simplifying actually work along with this. That makes me happy! 🙂

Sooooo Tsh just announced today that this week’s project is working on our wardrobes/closets. I was really really REALLY hoping it would be something else! My closet area was one place that I really wasn’t sure I could handle posting a picture of. It’s scary. For real.

It’s one of the places I usually (maybe that should be “always”) put off because most people never see it.

But I’m going to do it !

Here are 2 before pictures for today:

My, my, my... I have a lot of work to do.

Oh dear. Maybe you shouldn't look!

OK then! Off I go! I think you have a pretty good idea of what I’m in for!

Are you joining me in Project: Simplify? Or are you working on decluttering another area of your home?


5 Reasons why I want to Simplify

This is a "Before" picture just begging for an "After" picture!!

 These are not in any particular order….

1.  I have too much stuff! If I declutter and get rid of stuff, it will be less stuff to take care of, clean, put away, organize, etc, which will give me more time to do things that are really important. And maybe someone else could really use some of the stuff that is just sitting around here! (OK, this is sort of 2 or 3 reasons in one.)

2.  I will save money. Things are getting broken from being stepped on. I won’t waste food  because it is lost in the refrigerator. I won’t buy things twice because I can’t find the first one I bought. I won’t get a fee from a late bill payment because I misplaced a bill or just forgot in my disorganization.

3.  I will bless my family.

4.  I will be a better example for my kids and will be able to teach and train them in this area so that hopefully they won’t have these same struggles.

Sweetness!

 5.  I will bless others. I will be more likely to invite people over, and will have more time to volunteer and help others.

What are your reasons for simplifying? Do you have any to add?


This is not a deserted island

My life on an island.

 

I keep losing things and I can’t figure out why!!!!

😉


I take no credit for this

Nice! Just don't look at the rest of the room 🙂

Pretty good, eh? Mr. RSS(ReadySetSimplify – that would be my hubba hubby) did this! We sort of have this rule, or at least we used to, that the last person up makes the bed. Neither one of us have followed our rule very well, but sometimes we surprise each other with this nice treat.

Ok, he might surprise me more than I surprise him. If we do keep this rule, it works out well for me because these days I’m usually the first one up. 🙂

By the way, I have some posts brewing on priorities and um, making a plan to do this simplification thing. I do need some kind of plan, don’t I? Besides starting a blog? LOL


Here we go!

This is my daughter, but I'm pretending it's me, running to clean my house!

Well Hello There! I’ve been thinking about starting a blog for a long time, and tonight I decided to just do it. Yep. In the middle of the night seemed like a good time.

The word that keeps floating around in my head is “Simplify.” That is the goal around here. The word that enters my head if I look around my house right now is “Chaotic. ”  Too much stuff, unorganized, overwhelmed. Can I move from chaotic and messy to simplified, prioritized, and peaceful? We’ll see! This is the start to my journey.

I think having some of you along for the ride will help me!   And maybe we can have some fun along the way!