Sunday, January 13, 2013

Sunday Set-up For a Great Week

Posted by Krista at 6:34 PM Comments

How are you doing? Are you finalizing your plans for the upcoming week? Even if you are not planning on joining in Cleaning ALL the Things, Sunday is a great day to get things set up for a stellar week.

I spent yesterday getting the house tidied up, mopping floors, catching up the laundry. Today I didn't do too much. Ran a few errands. I decided this morning that I would like to make a big pot of veggie chili for my lunches this week. I tend to eat more mindfully if I have my breakfast and lunches planned/made ahead of time. Tonight when I am cleaning up supper I will make a pot of Bob's Red Mills Mighty Tasty Hot Cereal. I like to divide it into 4 or 5 half-pint mason jars. It makes for a quick, healthy breakfast.

This evening I will also spend some time looking over my calendar (I use Cozi)  to remind myself of any important dates this week. I also have a few appointments that I need to make, and I will put those on the calendar (so that I don't forget to make them again this week).

My big plan for this week is to start actually working on crossing things off on my "Clean ALL the Things" lists. My idea is to work on it a bit each day. In order for this to happen there are certain things I would like to try to accomplish each day. I'm going to try to be very disciplined and start my daily chores (making beds, empty dishwasher, etc) as soon as I get the big kids up for school. That way I will have my dailies done before taking my youngest to his morning activities. The other thing I would like to do is consistently do my evening clean up. Making sure the kitchen is clean after supper, getting the kids to pick up their stuff, folding and putting away the laundry. Hopefully by doing that and waking up to a mostly cleaned up house, I can get through dailies quickly. That will leave my afternoons free to work on my Cleaning ALL the Things, and anything else that pops up.

One last thing I wanted to share with you today. Remember the other day in my post I told you about my friend K, who had the brilliant 13 week plan idea? She emailed me her lists and she said that I could share them with you.

Her lists are an edited version of my lists, so again there is nothing fancy about the lists but they are functional! She added some things on her lists that I do not have - she has a basement, wine cellar, and a couple other rooms; along with some jobs that I didn't think of putting on mine. I'm sure there will be some great ideas for you to add to your lists. Here are the lists from my very smart friend. I hope that you'll find them helpful. 

What are some things that you try to do in order to set yourself up for a great week?


Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Getting Past My Brain

Posted by Krista at 9:31 PM Comments
(Click picture for source)

 Have you decided to join in with the 2013 Cleaning Grand Plan Challenge or as I refer to it "The Clean ALL the Things" challenge? I was talking with a friend about this challenge (she is going to attempt to Clean ALL the Things!) and one thing she pointed out to me is if we make this a 13 week plan, then it will repeat 4 times a year.

I thought this was fabulous! I've tried many, many times to do the monthly zones (from Flylady) and I always get so burnt out. I feel like I'm on a cleaning merry-go-round and there is never any breathing room. Certainly I  know how to take a break, but I guess what happens is that it leads to me feeling like a failure.
I do realize that this is just my perception and logically I'm not a failure because I don't stick with zones. I mean, clearly it's not the end of the world because I didn't vacuum under the couch every month.

I've read a lot about our mind and I know that when we continually perceive that we are failing it can have a profound effect on being able to move forward. We get stuck. And getting unstuck is a challenge, especially if we are going to try the same method or it has too many similarities to something else we've done and "failed" in completing to our expectations.

What happens is this: our lower brain (reactive brain) kicks in first and then communicates with our middle brain (deliberative brain) - checking memories and comparing. Together they lock out the top brain (reflective brain). And with the lower and middle brain in control they say "whoa! we're not doing that again, we fail!"and that increases the odds that we will fail if we try again. Physiologically our body goes into the fight or flight response.

I am hoping to by-pass the lower brain response by trying a new method that is just different enough that my odds of succeeding should increase. I have a couple of ideas on this.

First idea is this: I could tweak my current schedule and make it a 13 week (4 times a year) routine. I hopefully won't feel like I am on a constant cleanathon. I will tell myself the same things I wanted you to remember from my previous post - "If something on the list doesn't get done, it's okay!" Whatever I am able to accomplish in each round, I will check off. If some weeks I am unable to check everything off, then I will start with those unchecked things on the next round.

Second idea is this: Keep my schedule the way it is and when I'm done, I'm done. Sounds great right? The house will be "spring-cleaned" (hopefully) and I can be done until the end of August when the Christmas Grand Plan starts up. I think the only down-fall to this plan is if I am not able to cross everything off on the list in this round, I won't be going back to finish up until August! By then it will be like starting completely over.

It looks like the first idea is the best idea. I think it will take a lot of pressure off myself (yes, it's pressure I put on myself). Ultimately I want to get my home clean and organized, but if I can't complete a list all in one week, is it going to get fed up and clean/organize it's self? Oh I wish! No, it'll be there in 3 months for me to finish. Big deal. Let it go. I will do the best I can and no more. No outlandish expectations. No running myself ragged. No not living life because I have to get the cleaning done.

I found this great article on positive thinking and I thought I would pass it along and share with everyone. I especially love the 10 beliefs create positive emotions, better performance, and much better results. I think I'll try something like this when I'm doing jobs I usually dread by saying  "I'm the kind of woman that cleans the refrigerator!" Yeah! Go me! haha

What are areas that you can recognize your primal sense of fear takes over and keeps you from moving forward? I would love to hear some techniques that you use to get unstuck.

Follow the Pins

Posted by Krista at 10:49 AM Comments

Have you heard of Pinterest? It's a social networking site where people share photos of their favorite events, interests and hobbies. I think just about everyone has at least heard of it but maybe you're not using it yet; you just might be inspired to try it after you read this post.

I just created a Pinterest page for Home Organization 365! How exciting is that?!

If you are looking for an excuse to join up - now you've got one! Not that I'm promoting another time waster...well, okay maybe I am promoting it, but really it can be useful! A couple of the ways that I use Pinterest are:
  1. I use it instead of bookmarks. I set it up basically the same way I would bookmarks- instead of folders I name my boards accordingly. This works really well for me for two reasons: One - I have a visual reminder of what it is. There is nothing worse than looking for something you know you bookmarked and having to go through 50 bookmarks to find it. Two - they will always be there. My computer can die and I will always have my pins. 

  2. I am using it as an idea board in my organizational quest. I have created boards for each room in my home and when I see a decorating or organizing idea I put the pin on that board. Then as I organize and clean a room, I can go look at the board and see what I can incorporate from my "idea board".
There are many more ways you can use Pinterest (organizing recipes and crafts) too. If you're inspired to give Pinterest a try and you need an account, you can just go to this page; and log in via Facebook, Twitter, or with an email address.

If you're already a Pinterest user, I'd love it if you would follow me! You can click the link at the top of this post or use the follow me button on the right hand sidebar.

I only have a few people I am following and I would love to be able to follow you and see your ideas for cleaning and organizing too! Hope to see you there! 


Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Happy New Year, Now Clean ALL the Things!

Posted by Krista at 4:01 PM Comments
Wow, I can't believe it's been 2 years since I have last posted here. I wish I could say that during those two years I have conquered my home organization and I have since been sitting pool side drinking cocktails. Yeah, that's not what happened. I've been working on organizing and cleaning...rinse and repeat. Of course I've been doing other things too; like living life and enjoying my family and friends too. And reading...lots of reading.

 Here it is 2013. A brand new year full of endless possibility.

What better time to 
(Click picture for source)
Just before (or maybe it was after) New Years, I saw a post on Facebook from about their 2013 Cleaning Grand Plan Challenge. It's a 14 week plan (one week of organizing, 12 weeks of cleaning and a week at the end to finish up) to get the house cleaned up and organized for Spring. I saw the first week involved making lists. Well, that was enough to perk up my interest. I'm an avid list maker (it's the follow-through that is questionable).

I set to work yesterday making my lists for the challenge. It took awhile, but I am happy to report they are done and ready for printing. I'm going to share them with you. They are all in Word format, so after you download the list, you should be able to edit the list to work for you. I have no idea what your home looks like, how many rooms you have, etc. Just take what works for you, move things around, change the weeks around - basically whatever you want to do.  There is nothing fancy to these lists. I didn't want to get caught up in making them all pretty.

Most of all, I want you to know this one thing - If something on the list doesn't get done, it's okay! Repeat that to yourself as you open each list. Repeat it to yourself as you set to work on each list. Repeat that to yourself when it's time to move on to the next week. Just do what you can, as much you want to do, and the rest will still be there later.

Without further delay here are all of the lists I have created:
I hope that these lists will be helpful for you to either use as they are or to create your own version. The only thing I ask is if you download any or all of the lists, would you please leave a comment letting me know you too are going to "Clean ALL the Things" and if you like the lists.  Thanks!


Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Organize This, Organize That

Posted by Krista at 12:41 PM Comments
"Getting organized is one of the top five New Year's resolutions people make."
~Standolyn Robertson, president of the National Association of Professional Organizers
Did you make a resolution to get organized this year? I think the majority of us make this resolution in one way or another. My resolution was to set up household routines and stick to them so that I can have more fun. Part of that will be getting things organized, so yeah, I made that resolution too. :) I can certainly understand why so many of us make these types of resolutions. The new year symbolizes a "fresh start." And our external environment is often a reflection of our internal environment - a cluttered home (or work space) reflects a cluttered mind.

Since January is National Get-Organized Month, I thought I would list some tips and tools for getting organized.

Lighten Up: Feng shui experts have found that well-lit areas tend to have less clutter. Look around your home and see if this is true for you. I know it is for me! If it's cloudy or dark in the house I feel like I can get by with doing less - I don't see the dust and mess as clear as I would if it were bright in the house. Add some brighter lamps, open up the curtains - let the sun shine in.

A Home for Loose Items: We all have these areas in our homes, they tend to be the hot spots - where we set all the little things that seem to float around the house (magazines, remotes, keys). Find a basket for each type of item so that it will have a home - other than the flat surface you are trying to keep clean.

Store items close to where they are used: Does your family play games in the living room? Set a nearby shelf or closet aside to store them. Do you craft? Think about setting up a crafting area near where you craft. Storing items close to where we use them increases the likely hood that they will be put away when we are finished with them.

Websites: There are a ton of organizational websites out there for your use. Here a  few that I use on a regular basis.
  • Organized Home - Clean House, Cut Clutter, Get Organized at Home!
  • Flylady - Creating routines, decluttering, cleaning by zones all 15 minutes at a time. Flylady's system is done using a Household Notebook. I personally love the notebook but I pick and choose what I use from the Flylady site. It doesn't all work for me.
  • My Messy House - I use this for my Weekly House Blessing (Flylady term). Flylady has WHB on hour a week, that's impossible for me no matter how hard I try. So I use the My Messy House plan to do my WHB one room (lucky room of the day) per day (Monday - Friday).
  • S.H.E.'s Organized - This is the home of Pam Young and Peggy Jones' Sidetracked Home Executives™ household management system. This is where I started. I am a proud SHE. This system is often referred to as being "in the box". It's set up with 3x5 cards and a box holder. I have incorporated a lot of Pam & Peggy's system into my Household Notebook.
Apps: I am sure there are a lot more apps and computer programs you can use for helping you get organized but here are just a few I use or have tried.
  • Google Calendar - You can use this in place of a household notebook. I also have a few friends that use Outlook instead of a notebook. 
  • Cozi - This is a free online organizer (there is also a free mobile app). You can use it for appointments, lists, blogging and you can share with family members online too!
  • Home Routines - This an app for the itouch/iphone. This is one of my favorite organizational apps. I love this app. I have recommended this app to a few friends on Twitter too and they have loved it too. It is one app that is absolutely worth buying. One friend bought an itouch just to download this app. :)
  • Awesome Note - This is another app for the itouch/iphone/ipad. I just downloaded it this weekend and I love this app as well. There are so many things you can do with this app - it's amazing. It ranks right up there with the Home Routines app and I've only had it about 3 days. 
So go have some fun getting organized this year! Remember this though - motivation follows action. Don't let yourself stop you from reaching your goals. Waiting for the motivation to strike or waiting until (insert whatever you are waiting for) often results in never reaching our goals. Vision what you want and then just go for it! Once you start working towards your goal, you'll be surprised how much motivation you will find to continue. Progress not perfection - life, organizing, loving ourselves -it's all a journey!

Do you have any tips or tricks for getting and staying organized? I'd love to hear them!


Photo here

**This is a cross post from Typical Ramblings, Atypical Nonsense. You can read the original here.**

Monday, March 22, 2010

Spring Cleaning

Posted by Krista at 9:08 PM Comments

Saturday was offically the first day of spring! I don't know about where you live but here, we couldn't have asked for a better spring day - it was sunny and 20C - don't be jealous it didn't last long, back to 8C today, but it was glorious while it lasted.  Last week my kids were off school on March Break - were your kids?  I had such grandiose plans of getting this and that accomplished...yeah, we ended up playing all week and finally on Friday I did a good Weekly House Blessing and called it good enough.  The kids are only going to be little once right? and believe me the housework isn't going anywhere. ;)

I know I have already made my cleaning plan to get things in order before summer break, and after the gorgeous weather last week I realized I really need to buckle down and make the most of my time. Use my time wisely.  Sometimes I'm not very good about that - I really like my play time.  But like I tell the kids, get your homework done right away and you'll have lots of time for play.  I need to take my own advice right? So looking at my schedule I'm a little off plan but I have until April 10 to play catch up.  That is definitely do-able if I use my time wisely.

Tomorrow I have a 2 year birthday party to throw for my little guy, so it'll be just the usual cleaning up and decorating.  But starting on Wednesday I will get busy spring cleaning and getting things organized.  Oh! I forgot to tell you that today I received part of my prize package from the 28 Day Organizing Challenge.  My box of Mabel's Labels arrived!

Check out the loot!  I can hardly wait to start organizing again and labeling!  This arrived at a perfect time, don't you think? I'll take pictures as I use some of the labels and show you how lovely they look - I know I'm going to love them. I'm still waiting for my BLIS to arrive, hopefully that will be here this week too. Can't wait to try that & let you know how it works. :)

So, that's whats been on my mind lately.  Are you airing out your home and freshening things up for spring? Do you have a schedule?  Happy Spring!!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Natural Trash Can Deodorizer

Posted by Krista at 10:30 AM 6 comments

How many times have you taken out the trash thinking "oh man the trash stinks!", then you come back and you can still smell that smell?? I've found a great way to clean out the trash cans using natural products. This is important to me for two big reasons. 1st - I don't have worry about having or using chemicals around the kids and 2nd - I don't have to worry about what those chemicals are doing to harm the environment.

What you will need:
  • Hot water
  • White vinegar
  • Tea Tree Oil
  • Long handled brush (an extra toilet brush works great for this)
  • Baking Soda
What you will do:
  • Fill the trash can about half way with hot water (I fill it in the bathtub)
  • Add 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 8-10 drops of  Tea Tree Oil
  • Mix that around and use the brush to scrub down the sides of the can
  • Leave it to soak for 20-30 minutes (longer if you get sidetracked)
  • Empty and I like to set it outdoors to dry, then sprinkle a little baking soda in the bottom before putting in a new trash bag.
That's it! It works for me. :) I hope you'll try it and let me know how it works for you!


Home Organization 365 Copyright © 2010 Designed by Ipietoon Blogger Template Sponsored by Online Shop Vector by Artshare