Thursday, October 8, 2015

Goodbye Lists, Hello Organized House

I don't know about you but I love Excel... you know the computer program.  Ever since I first learned to use Microsoft Excel I have loved making spreadsheets.  I make them for grocery lists, cleaning lists, school items and household things too.  I make them for the most mundane of tasks that do not require a spreadsheet at all.  I love making little boxes and putting borders around them.  I love to merge cells and wrap text.  Call me a nerd if you will but I love it!

I only just now realized that I need to stop making lists and spreadsheets.  Mind you I won't give them up all together but I need to think about how I utilize them and the stress they cause me.  I have been a stay at home mom for almost 8 years now... and if this was a paying job I would have been fired long ago.  Anyone else feeling me?

I have tried to fly with the FlyLady (she is great!!! but I can never keep up)... I have tried to modify her stuff to fit me.  I tried to send my boys to grandmas for the weekend and clean my house from top to bottom and then it gets messy again within weeks.  I made spreadsheet after spreadsheet, trying to keep myself on track.  I even bought a new notebook at the start of the school year, you know, when everything is fifty cents!!!  And nothing has worked.

I just keep trying and seems to do nothing but setting myself up for failure... until I found Marie Kondo.  Have you ever watched a news report and seen an idea and thought, hmm that is pretty awesome, and then file it away in your brain which already holds too much information?  This is what I did when I first heard about her book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up!  I really wanted to try it but was too cheap to buy the book or too lazy to try anything new.

Until I found it at Costco!!  Am I right ladies, everything looks better at Costco.  I love to walk up and down the aisles at all the things I don't need for my home.  I peruse the books as if I have the time to sit and read!  Then I saw this book...

I already knew that this is what it looked like and I have to grab it.  And it was only $10 and I thought lets do this.  I think you have to reach a certain point in your life where you need and WANT to change.  I thought I was fine but after reading this book I didn't know how lost I was.  This book reads to quick and easy and the more you read the more you want to finish the book so you can tear apart your house and find peace!

Being the mother of two young boys that word, PEACE, isn't something that I think of when I envision my house.  But I am learning that I can have it and how desperate I am to find it.  Do you ever come home and find yourself so angry with how your home looks that you really just want to climb under the covers and hope some magical cleaning fairy will show up?  I was in a constant state of moving piles, piles of papers off my counter and to my dining room table then off that again so we could eat.  They always were shifted from one place to another until I got so sick of it that I finally dealt with them.

But how is that a way to live?

After reading this book I tackled my closet since she says clothes go first.  I am not going to give away all the details because you need to have this book!!  I was able to refold my husbands t-shirts and underwear and freed up three drawers in his dresser and I cleared two whole hanging racks from my closet.  And was able to have this space to enjoy...

How crazy is that?  (By the way that is the first dollar I ever made!!)

I have a beautiful closet.  I got rid of some clothing items but for the most part I just folded them properly and put them away... GET THIS BOOK!!

Check out her website too!

But now that my closet is looking nicer and my downstairs catch-all closet is organized I still have to clean the house right?

And we are back to the lists... the never ending checklist of all the things that need to be accomplished on top of doing the dishes, making the beds, picking up after myself and my family, doing the laundry and finding some time to eat and exercise?

I was mad... so mad that I took my hedge trimmer to my rose bushes and trimmed those poor defenseless plants to almost nothing!  And then by the grace of God (my savior) I found the solution!!

No More LISTS!

Bye bye spreadsheets and never ending to do lists.  We all know that we need to clean the mirror, counters, sinks, tub, shower and toilet when we clean the bathroom, right?  So why did I have every single detail of every single thing I needed to do.  I know I need to make the beds in the morning and get dressed.  I know I need to do the dishes every day and water the garden.  Why was I setting myself up for disaster but overwhelming myself with a plethora (one of my favorite words to say!) of things to do?

So from now on for Monday it will simply say... Sheets and Bible Room.  (The Bible Room is our front room that we have dedicated to not only the first thing you see when you enter our home but also a declaration of our love for the Lord.  We read our bibles in there with our boys and display our collection of crosses that we gather on our travels.)

I know that Sheet and Bible Room means to wash the sheets and clean the Bible Room.  I don't need a list telling me that I need to dust and clean the blinds and sweep, mop and vacuum... forget that noise.  I know what needs to be done.  So once this is published I am taking down my silly checklists and putting up a simple weekly list... 7 sections (cause you know there are 7 days of the week) and their corresponding tasks.  DONE.

Granted I still have a long way to go to make my house tidy and organized like the book says.  But I feel so much better about making my life work.  And not having my husband want to fire me when he comes home!  (just kidding, I am lucky that the Lord sent me a patient and understanding husband and not the guy from Sleeping with the Enemy where all the cans had to be lined up and facing the right way!)

So please if you have $10 lying around and you need a change... get that book and see that it really is LIFE-CHANGING!!!

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