Archive for July, 2010

Thinking About De-cluttering

July 31, 2010

Because we had some problem with our email a few weeks ago, I was accidentally unsubscribed from an email list that I’ve been on for absolutely YEARS. The list is for moms of many children, especially born relatively close together, and is very, very large. Interestingly, though I’ve followed the list for so very long, and have made some long-distance friends because of it, I found that I don’t really miss it and have not made any effort to re-subscribe.

So, I started wondering about that, as you know I am prone to do. I started wondering if it had become “clutter” in my life, in a way, to have so many women’s opinions, problems, etc. in my inbox every day. Now, I am not suggesting that it is “clutter” to know about others’ problems so I can pray about and for them. This is more like having a lot of people kind of throwing out their opinions about how other people should be living. I think my SHE personality might have been getting distracted by the “clutter” of so many opinions.

Anyway…it will be interesting to see if God ever prompts me to make the effort to reinstate my subscription.

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Flylady and Date Night

July 30, 2010

I love Date Night. Since quality time is one of my primary love languages, Date Night is especially important to me. Date Night this week requires more planning than normal. And I am reminded how wonderful it is to have older children who are nearby and can be responsible for their younger siblings while Joey and I go out for some fun!

Flylady and Me and De-cluttering

July 29, 2010

I’m almost afraid to say it, but I think I might actually be getting the hang of de-cluttering. I can’t believe I’m saying that. However, I’m finding that I’m kind of ruthlessly (for me, anyway) throwing stuff away instead of piling it up to be taken care of later. For example, yesterday, when we were all finished with the crafty 4-H projects, Margaret, Eleanor, Tim and I set the timer for 30 minutes and got the whole craft room put back in order. Most of the out-of-place stuff ended up in the trash cans.

This may be a turning point for me…but I’m not going to get too excited too soon!

Flylady and Panic-Free 4-H Entry Day

July 28, 2010

Today is Anti-Procrastination Day. I think that the fact that today is also Fair Entry Day is very appropriate. This year, Flylady-style, we made every effort NOT to put off getting supplies for 4-H projects. Consequently, for the most part, today was relatively panic-free. The younger kids, especially, had completed their projects in timely fashions (for example, NOT at midnight last night) and Joey helped them get their supporting information completed while I was at Jazzercise. So, even though this day is historically one of the busiest days of our year, it was panic-free today.

Flylady and Perfectionism, Again, and Again

July 27, 2010

Sometimes, I am amazed at how deeply my finding and following Flylady has affected me. Yes, I have a cleaner, more peaceful home. But that is just the superficial evidence of the deeper work that dealing with my perfectionism has accomplished.

Flylady posted again today about perfectionism. Her message is just what I’m dealing with on a constant basis lately. I wonder if all of this constant self-evaluation is somewhat narcissistic, but then I read in The Knowledge of the Holy today:

Our real idea of God may lie buried under the rubbish of conventional religious notions and may require an intelligent and vigorous search before it is finally unearthed and exposed for what it is. Only after an ordeal of painful self-probing are we likely to discover what we actually believe about God.

This small snippet reassured me that intelligent and vigorous searches and painful self-probing are valuable when it comes to gaining truth and understanding. And I continue to have vigorous searches and painful self-probing when it comes to how perfectionism has shaped my life. Each search and probe results in a healthier me, a me who loves myself more and who can then love others more. A freer me. A me who is much more able to get out of the way and let God shine through me.

My most recent probe has involved the revelation of what has actually been my motivating self-talk for getting my Flylady chores done on a daily basis. I found that I have been saying to myself every time I get a load of laundry done or get supper in the crockpot or clean the kitchen counters, “Joey will really appreciate this.” And underneath that seemingly harmless motivating statement is the lie: If I keep doing these Flylady chores, Joey will LOVE me.

Now, Joey does appreciate my keeping up with the housework. But my little, life-long, live-in perfectionist that I haven’t been able to entirely evict from my subconscious mind distorts that fact into thinking that I have to earn Joey’s love by keeping up with the housework. Yes, this whole idea stems from the idea that Joey’s love language is acts of service. But the perfectionist in me twists it all around to fit the idea that my PERFECT behavior in some way allows me to earn people’s love. That people don’t or won’t love me if I’m not perfect.

Sure, I’ve already looked at this phenomenon. I’ve even blogged about it recently. So it continues to amaze me that I can continue to learn more about how perfectionism can really warp a person’s ideas about life and love.

P.S. I read a magazine article about an artisan who boasted by describing herself as a perfectionist. It reminded me how our society in general speaks of perfectionism as a virtue. And, as Flylady put it today, it is NOT a virtue. It is a crippling, degrading, stifling vice that keeps people from loving each other fully, from doing God’s work in their lives, from living abundantly!

My Latest Reading Material

July 26, 2010

In addition to 4-H manuals and the premium book, I’ve managed to squeeze in some very light reading lately. I read Carol Burnett’s This Time Together. It was a quick read, but rather interesting. I watched her show faithfully growing up and have lots of fond memories of it, so it was fun to hear about some of the “behind the scenes” stories.

I’m glad that I’m making an effort to keep reading, even in the midst of this busy “season.”

Peaks and Valleys

July 25, 2010

Life is full of peaks and valleys, isn’t it? For most of the day yesterday, I was on cloud nine with my creative experiences and then eating supper and laughing with Stephen and Amelia and Harriet. Today, I have had a splitting headache all day.

Spiritual Renewal and Creativity

July 24, 2010

Today, I was blessed beyond measure to have spent most of the morning and early afternoon with some like-minded gals who generously invited several of us who are participating in the crafting weekend this fall to get together for some pre-event crafting and shopping. I had been looking forward to this day for weeks and I was not disappointed in the least. These gals were so incredibly kind and thoughtful, from providing brunch AND lunch for us, to preparing a beautiful and useful craft for us to complete, to driving us to a fun and inexpensive “junk” store for some craft shopping.

I am so grateful to have become friends with these women. I look forward to spending time with them in the future. It truly was a day of spiritual renewal for me.

Flying Through Flylady Routines

July 23, 2010

This morning, I tried something. I knew that I would need to leave by 10:30am for an appointment that Peter had. Pretty much without fail, I plan my exercising (on off-Jazzercise days) by backing up from my ETD and figuring out when I need to start the good ol’ Walk the Walk DVD to be done in time to shower and get out the door. Well, instead of just backing up and figuring out when I needed to start the Walk the Walk DVD, I also backed up enough to include some Flylady chores.

Yes, I am a slow learner. You all have probably already thought of this solution. So, if I manage to always squeeze in exercising, no matter what, it makes sense that I could also probably manage to squeeze in some chores, IF I PLAN FOR IT.

P.S. Today, 13 people read this blog. (Hi, all of you!) I saw that little statistic on my dashboard immediately after I got done reading the Cakewrecks blog which, of course, has zillions of readers every day. Tim says that no one reads my blog because I don’t have any pictures. I think it’s because I don’t have any racy, adult-ish content. Oh, well. It matters not. I’ve learned a lot writing this blog. It will be kind of weird when I’m done with my year next month.

Even More 4-H and Flylady

July 22, 2010

More than ever before, I have been, consciously or, by now, subconsciously, incorporating Flylady’s techniques into areas of my life other than housekeeping. As you know, we have been whittling away at 4-H projects, a little bit each day, day by day. For the first time, really, I genuinely had the attitude of “do a little each day and do it today” rather than “these projects aren’t due for another week, so let’s wait until then.”

Last night was the night before clothing entry day. Clothing Entry Day Eve. On this day for the past 14 years, we have not gone to bed at an hour that resembles our usual bedtime. We used to laugh and say that we knew that all across our county, other mothers and their children (mostly daughters) were having this same sewing-at-the-last-minute bonding time. But, really, it was pretty stressful most of the time.

But, last night, we were entirely done with everything, including having the projects labeled (thanks, Jacob) and bagged by 9:30pm. Unbelievable. Unbelievably stress-free. Unbelievably peaceful.

Thanks, Flylady.