Archive for the ‘De-cluttering’ Category

Top Ten Countdown: Number Five

August 26, 2010

Half-way into my countdown of the Top Ten Things I’ve Learned in 365 Days with Flylady, number five is:

Flylady’s routines can be creatively adjusted to fit anyone’s circumstances.

I’ll say it again, I am a mother of ten children. Eight of these children are still at home. The other two and their husbands and the darling granddaughter are in and out. We homeschool. A lot of people are in this house. A lot. Consequently, I cannot–should not–follow Flylady’s own personal routine to the letter. I have a lot of house to hold a lot of kids and it just takes lots and lots and lots of actual time and physical effort to maintain it all. Yet, I need not throw the baby out with the bathwater.

This year, some of the most important things I’ve learned have involved modification of Flylady’s basic ideas to fit OUR HOUSEHOLD. For example, our Weekly Home Blessing Hour is not an hour. As I’ve mentioned, it takes an hour just to mop one floor of our house. So, we plan accordingly. I’ve also finally learned, through a lot of trial and error this year, that if a Zone Mission is going to get done, it’s usually going to have to be completed before any kids get up. Once the children are awake, I am torn in a million interrupted directions if I attempt to put off their needs in order to complete a Zone Mission. That also goes for de-cluttering (which I cannot seem to find a consistent way to spell). If any serious de-cluttering is going to happen, it has to happen while I am by myself.

I’m kind of hard-line when I hear people complain that Flylady just won’t work for them. I contend that if Flylady can work for me, it can work for anyone. Just take Flylady’s principles, ask God for His inspiration and get to work creatively.


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.

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, De-cluttering and 4-H

July 6, 2010

Well, 4-H season is upon us in full force. Today, Eleanor and Margaret were blessed to attend a sewing workshop associated with 4-H. They were excited about going and so was I since they will end up with a completed 4-H project at the end of the workshop!

They each had to take a sewing machine, notions, etc. to the workshop. Because we had been de-cluttering the craft room, it was fairly painless (except for the misplaced sewing machine foot…) preparing everything for them. It’s nice to be able to find all of the bobbins for the different machines, for example.

And I’m motivated to dust off (literally) a sewing machine that doesn’t get much action to see if I can get some more use out of it. That’s one of the best things about de-cluttering, I think. I love being able to see and USE the stuff we already have.

Oh, no! I’m starting to sound like I actually LIKE de-cluttering!

Flylady and Balance Revelation

July 5, 2010

Today, I think I actually caught a glimpse of how this whole Flylady Control Journal/timer/balance thing works! As you know, I’ve been really wanting to work creativity into my daily routine. I realized the other day that one major obstacle in my path toward daily creativity was my craft room clutter. So…I started whittling away at the clutter. In my stereotypical SHE way, I really wanted to hyper-focus on the craft room and spend all of my time de-cluttering it until it was–you guessed it–perfectly tidy.

BUT, instead, this morning, after I ate breakfast and did my Bible reading, I set my TIMER for 30 minutes and told myself that I would de-clutter the craft room for only 30 minutes and then get on with the rest of my Control Journal responsibilities (laundry, Zone Missions, etc.). First of all, I was amazed at how much I actually got done in only 30 minutes. Second, I was amazed at how much energy I had left for all of my other responsibilities. Third, I was amazed at how de-cluttering an area in which I am looking forward to an activity (creativity!) was so different for me than de-cluttering an area of the house that, in my mind, will just eventually be cluttered up again by someone else. I wonder how I would feel about de-cluttering if I could always imagine doing something I like to do in the areas I am de-cluttering….

So…I am energized by my revelation today and look forward to some crafting this week!

Flylady Miscellany

July 3, 2010

First, we have almost finished de-cluttering the girls’ room. The only thing we have left to do is the sorting of the jewelry-making supplies, which was our initial motivating factor for de-cluttering. We really got rid of the trash in drawers and on shelves and it’s going to be a lot easier to maintain the area.

Second, I made a little effort to be more intentional about swishing and swiping the second floor bathroom AND the basement bathroom. At first, I wasn’t going to add the basement bathroom to the mix. But, then I thought about how many times a day I walk through that room to get to the laundry room and decided, Why not?

Third, we really had Family Fun Day yesterday instead of today which is why I was doing more cleaning on a Saturday. The kids had received Applebee’s coupons from the library’s summer reading program (we are actually participating in TWO libraries’ summer reading programs), so Clara and I took the six smaller folk out for their free lunches and then ran a few errands. One of the errands involved renting “The Spy Next Door” because Peter had wanted to see it and he had earned a free movie rental from Hastings. So, after supper, we all sat down and watched it together. I was actually laughing aloud at parts. Peter got the action and fighting that he wanted without any real blood or terror or anything. And I got the comedy that I like.

You know, after re-reading all of that post, I don’t wonder why I have absolutely no trouble sleeping every night!

De-cluttering, Flylady and Me

June 22, 2010

Okay, then. Whew. I am reminded why I avoid de-cluttering. Yesterday, I finally tackled an area that I’ve been needing to de-clutter. I knew that there was no way that it would only take me 15 minutes, so I planned for a longer period of time. I also knew that I wouldn’t get out more than I could put away in 15 minutes and it wouldn’t become a major issue if it took me a few hours to get the whole area de-cluttered.

So, yes, I successfully de-cluttered, but I was SO cranky in the process. It is just so incredibly annoying to have to make even small decisions about what to keep and what to throw away. I was talking to Kathleen about this last night and she said that she almost has to get to the point of being sick of a cluttered area before she becomes ruthless enough to de-clutter. I think that is true of me. I almost have to become angry enough to de-clutter. Which is probably why I don’t want to work myself up to this state of angry decision-making on a daily basis.

The good thing is that once I de-clutter an area, it stays de-cluttered. The kids’ playroom that Clara and I de-cluttered last summer is still in pretty good shape, for example. It could probably use some detailed tidying (I think some of the McDonald’s toys might be in the Barbie box), but, overall, we haven’t added any clutter to the area. So, I won’t be de-cluttering this particular area again, thankfully.

But I can’t say that I’m encouraged to start de-cluttering on a daily basis. Whew. Too much emotional energy involved.

Getting Moving as This Month’s Habit

May 5, 2010

Oh, I do LOVE it when the habit Flylady suggests we develop in any given month is one that is already firmly established in my routine. For example, this month, I really don’t have to work on Getting Moving at all. I’m definitely moving a lot!

But, maybe that means I should use my time and energy developing another habit–like, say, decluttering. Hmm….

Flylady “No Matter What”

April 6, 2010

I think I finally got a genuine glimpse of what Flylady means when she urges us to make something — like decluttering — a habit “no matter what.” I got this glimpse while exercising this morning. If I can’t go to Jazzercise for some reason, I exercise “no matter what.” On days when there is no Jazzercise, I exercise “no matter what.” I don’t excuse myself from exercise because it is inconvenient or it takes more effort than usual. I just do it — “no matter what.” And exercising doesn’t take a mere 15 minutes like most of my Flylady missions and habits.

So, I’m seeing how I need to develop that “no matter what” muscle behind some of the chores (like decluttering!) from which I very easily excuse myself when it is inconvenient or takes some effort.

Another Inspiration on Decluttering

April 2, 2010

Sometimes, when it’s one person decluttering and nine people “cluttering” (and I use that term to mean bringing stuff into our home, not necessarily trashing the place), it seems that I am not actually making any progress decluttering. This is discouraging to me when I don’t really groove into decluttering to start with. SO, I had this idea that, when I declutter, I will enlist the assistance of whomever is available to declutter with me. We’ll get twice as much (or three times, or four times, or…) decluttered in the same amount of time. I realize that my goal is to declutter before the little kids get going, but Joey is up, then and the older kids, so….

Stay tuned to see how this works!