Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Taking Back Control

It's night. And I get my best ideas right about now. Lofty plans for the 'morrow. All the ideas for things I will accomplish after dawn.

Kinda like that big bag of papers I used to bring home to grade every night. And never took it out of my car.

For some reason I have just been wandering around my house these last few weeks. I haven't been keeping up with things like I need to and I certainly haven't felt "accomplished" at the end of the day. Ug. I just cannot break out of this fog.

Do you get that? Kind of a housekeeping funk?

Then today, Suzanne posted her new laundry room plan (which was inspired by something I wrote back when I was feeling more useful). And then my friend Jennifer posted pics of her home binder.

And I feel just a little twinge of "let's get back on track-itis" coming on.

Maybe if I go lie down in will pass.

Come on folks--I need some encouragement. Where do you start when you feel overwhelmed with your house?


  1. Oh - I LOVE the lie-down-and-it-will-pass management system!

    While still feeling snotty about my slugism, I hit the couch, feet up and all, and read through parts of some great keeper of the home book for a while. Before I know it, I'm jazzed, make a master list of what needs to be done, rally the troops, assign marching orders, load the CD player, and we whip everything into shape.

    Once done, we all shower, load a movie, make pop-corn and relax. (The girls and I usually do our toes during the movie.)

    The next morning we all wake up with a lovely house, cute toes, and we're out of our - OK - I'm out of MY funk.

    Can't wait to see before and after pictures here! Go Baby Go! :)

  2. I like Edith Schaeffer's The Hidden Art of Homemaking. Of course, that focuses more on the spirit, beauty and creativity a Christian woman can bring to her homemaking experience so I don't know that it's quite what you're looking for.

    When I get in a slump, I pray very early: "Heavenly Father, please help me to be a good steward of my time and get things done today." That works every time!

    Then I pull out my daily chore list, the one inspired by the one I got from Motivated Moms. I focus just on the stuff that's done daily for a couple of days. After that, I'm usually back in the swing of things and can begin adding in the chores done periodically.

    But, I would indeed suggest that you eat a good breakfast, I hope you got a good night's rest, do what you can, and take a minute to relax when you need to.

    I have found that being overly driven, like a madwoman on a desperate mission, causes me to lose steam after a few days.Then I'm right back in the slump again. There's no need to live you're still out there in the rat race. That's one of the blesings of being at home full time. You can pace yourself.

    As you slowly, steadily, and methodically get things checked off yor list, the house will begin to come together and look good as new in a few days.

  3. If I am in a slump, and it happens often enough for me, usually its because I am overwhelmed (also happens often). Usually I commit myself to getting just one room in order, just one room. Once I realize how awesome it is to impose order and feel accomplished, I use that as my inspiration. I try to make a plan for the rest of the rooms.

    If I can't get the energy to do that, or if I am running out of time.. I devote 15 solid minutes to something I can accomplish in that time like sorting the mail, or putting away laundry, or getting the dishes completed. I set a timer and quit after 15 minutes. Then I relax and try to muster up another 15 minute spurt.

  4. Housework? My house has gone to ruins because of one thing: POTTY TRAINING.

    About the home management binder or whatever they are called? Is there actually any purpose for these, or are they just a passing fad?

  5. My home has been a disaster sense my last baby was born 18 mo ago.Finally I assigned my older 4 children a zone (room).Zone just sounds like more fun to them.I wrote out a check list and they had to clean that room flate surfaces only on day one.Day two flate and virtical.Day three flate, vetical if needed, and deep clean an area such as one wall of cabnets,the closet,under and inside the sofa...I did the laundry, meal prep,school,bills,diaper changes(ALL THE OTHER MOM STUFF) and helped in each room with really bad areas, We zone clean one hour in the morning then do one or two 15 minute zone cleans after lunch and before bed.We have done this for a week and the house is so much nicer and calmer to be in.My kids have been given lots of positive praise from mom and dad.They are so proud of thier zones.Now each of them have two rooms as their zone area to work on it still only takes about an hour or less in the morning and the one or two quick cleans to keep it all in shape.I also assigned a basket to each child if anything of that childs things are left in someone elses zone it goes in the thier basket they can choose to put it up or lose it.I didn't want my kids messing up others zones and not have to pick up after thierselves.I am keeping track of attitudes and how well they complete thier zone on a chart.My husband told them if they continue to do thier zone cheerfully and efficiantly he will pay them the same amount as thier age monthly.

  6. It should be flat not flate.I won't explain the rest of my spelling mistakes.I know you teach younger kids you can probably figur it out.SORRY!!!

  7. The binder did come in useful for my friend who just had surgery. I guess it depends on if anyone else is going to take over the house or not. In my case, probably not so it would just be for ME to know where everything is. My sister made one that is really useful. She has everything for the house in there. NEed to know what color paint the exterior of the house is? She's got it in there. Chinese take out number? yep. Doctor information, etc. I think if you personalized it for you, it would be a very good thing.

  8. I have been using a binder for 20 years.I started using one when I was 20 first married and the assosiate manager of a chain reastraunt.That is I started the binder for the other managers so they would have a go to guide for the store.It worked so well I made one for my home life as well.I don't use it daily but when I need to locate accout numbers,birth certificates,shot records phone numbers,or especially when we have guest.We are having friends from Germany this summer for three weeks.I have a hospitality section in the binder with lists of foods drinks places schedules shampoos soaps kinds of entertainment music that my guest like.I go to that section to prepair for company. I also use it a lot during the holidays so I don't have to reinvent the wheel so to speak.I keep holiday menus and pictures of the table scape and decorations from that season.I also keep notes for what did and didn't work well and ideas for the next years holidy.


  9. I think home binders are very useful.. I have about half of one? I need to put that on my to do list.

    I had the kids make room binders once. for instance they wrote favorite movies, ideas for presents, kept up with tags from webkinz and lego instruction manual, it had what they needed to do to clean their rooms. I should really update those and have them start using it again!

    As far as motivation for the slugs. I am laying IN MY BED, IN A ROBE on the computer so I am not one to talk, but I did stay up very late cleaning so I guess I just switched my motivation time! No really I usually simply have to get up and do something- I do use the flylady mentality like Jennifer 15 minute increments! I get the kids involved and make a list of what needs to be done. BUT I so understand the movivation part!

    I LOVE to open my curtains. It almost ALWAYS gets me motivated! it is a powerful thing!

  10. P.S.
    I am up, dressed, curtains going.. thanks for the motivation!!!! :)

  11. Three things motivate me to clean my house when I'm in a funk. 1) Being upset with my husband. I certainly wouldn't recommend trying to make this happen, but boy do I get a heckuva lot of housework done when I'm mad. Fortunately this doesn't happen too often. 2) Listening to an inconsolable baby. Again, kind of out of your control. My newest has an "unhappy" hour every night about the same time, and once I've done everything I can for him the only way I can keep my sanity is to furiously clean the house. 3) Having friends over for dinner and games. This one is a lot more fun than the previous two motivators! It both motivates me to clean the house and gives me something to look forward to, helping to kick the funk out of my system.

  12. I used to do the same thing with the papers. I would bring them in the house, then back to school, back to the house... I think it is many a teacher's excercise routine!

    Anyhow, I recently made chore lists for my 5 year old and I, I have an almost 2 yo also, and a new Managers of the Home schedule. I resist scheduling, but it was apparent we needed it. The big help has been having the chores mapped for the week. For 30 min. we each have a daily chore list, then later in the day we take a break from school and do another 30 of a weekly chore. Once a week the weekly chore is a monthly one. I don't think I have ever vacuumed (okay, the 5yo vacuums) and done other such jobs, ever. The house really is much cleaner. The clutter is still causing trouble and needs to be addressed.

    I guess my point is I can feel good if I know what was scheduled is done each day and not so overwhelmed doing everything. I also delegated a bunch to him, the 5yo. He doesn't do it all like I would, but at least he does it!

    Sorry for the long comment...


I don't get to talk to a lot of actual grown-ups during the day, so your comments make me really happy! :)