Tuesday, October 9, 2012


I'm looking at finding ways to be more organized.

Because I went through all kinds of changes in my job in the last 2 years, my home has fallen apart.  I am so exhausted after getting the kids to bed that it's all I can do to stay awake on the couch most nights.

I've been finding the upswing again and my attitude is more positive and I have been feeling much more like myself again.  It's fantastic!

But I am finding that I have to dig myself out of a hole.  I have to stay on top of things as best as I can at work and I have to get organized to get my house in some semblance of order.

While I was in Florida last month, Jeff surprised me with new kitchen cabinets and counters.  We only had cabinets and counters on one side of the room and now have all wall space filled with cabinets and countertops.  We are still working out the details of the shelving we were using before so the kitchen continues to be a work in progress.  But the good news is that we have been steadily working on it - purging and tossing and scrubbing.

At work, I have found that the overwhelming work load feels more controllable when I make lists.  I've never been much of a list maker - or maybe I will make one list and then let it go.  But I am writing up lists of work tasks almost daily.  At the end of the day, I take what hasn't been crossed off and put it on the list for the next day.  It's handwritten, it's basic and rudimentary, and it is totally working.

Now I'm trying to figure out the best method to work on my home.

Do I make a list?  Right now, that honestly feels overwhelming.

Dedicate 15 minutes each night to doing something around the house - folding laundry, run the vacuum, clean the bathroom?

Have a set workday where we tackle big projects?

And I somehow have to get the entire family to buy into the plan.  It has to be a group effort.  The kids have a toy situation that is out of control.  No matter how many times I pick up all the toys in the living room, those toys are spread out all over the floor again within an hour.  Maybe it's time to be more drastic and get serious about cleaning out the playroom and all toys get moved to the playroom.

Jeff has to be part of it, too.  A lot of the projects surround areas that are filled with his stuff - and I only push it off on him because he doesn't want me to touch his stuff.  But he's in the same boat I am - he's tired at the end of the day, he's been picking up a lot of my slack with the kids, and we have busy schedules with church and activities.  Plus, convincing him that we need to purge and not just store stuff can be a challenge.

I also need to know the best way to sell or get rid of bigger items.  We have a big screen TV sitting in our living room that needs a home- and will eventually need a new projector lamp or something.  Do we try to donate it somewhere?  Sell it?  We have shelving that could be very useful in the basement or garage but we don't have room to get them in place down there because we have get rid of all the stuff first.

When you have to tackle a big project and you know it isn't going to be a one day thing and you know it has to be ongoing... how do you manage it?  How do you get yourself motivated and organized?



Tracy said...

List things in a controllable fashion. That way you can cross things off and feel like you've accomplished something. We have a running list of all the projects we want to do in the house. It sounds daunting but when you can cross something off you feel so much better.

On kids toys, we had a huge problem once. Basically we told our daughter that if it wasn't in its proper place we were coming in and putting everything in a trash bag to donate. She didn't and we came in and picked everything up. We did let her get a few things out of the bag if she put them away but most were donated. She didn't even miss them.

Katherine said...

I'm a huge list person. When we have a big project (like our mini home reno, or getting ready for baby), I make a list and tape it to the fridge. I also try to make the list in order of priority: the most important things on top, the least important things on the bottom. I also think that setting aside a day or so to tackle projects is a great way to do it.

Good luck!

Nancy said...

We are starting to purge one or two things a day for each of us. So far it is a struggle, but we are trying.

Unknown said...

Sometimes when the kids stuff gets out of hand I will give each of them a basket and tell them to pick out 10 things to donate. Once they do that I have them collect 10 other things and put them away. One thing that has been a HUGE help on my mental drain is to do one load of laundry every day or every other day. I also plan the weeks meals on Sunday, taking into account the activities for the next week that may require a crock pot meal or a quick fix meal. Those two things have greatly improved my sanity!

Garret said...

The great thing about lists is the feeling that comes with crossing something off. When we moved into the house I had a Word doc list in my computer broken down by room. It had things like "hang fan", "touch-up paint", and I'd leave that list up on the fridge. I'd add to it and cross off on others. About once a week or so I'd update the file and reprint.