Posting of Daily Goals for Decluttering/Organization – my Flight Plan

Archive for June, 2012

Flight Plan – June 30 – Mail box (How deep is it?)

No, we’re not talking about the mailbox on the curb.  Take a look at DH’s cardboard box full of mail.  How far back does it go?  How much of it is junk mail that I can just throw into recycling?

Cardboard box of mail and etc. with recycling bin at the ready – Let’s see what kind of dent I can make in this for DH.

We’re about to find out!  This time I think I’ll do a 27-fling boogie.  27 pieces of mail in a 15-minute period!  READY, SET, GO!!


Flight Plan – June 30 – Timeframe and Goals

Let’s start fresh with June 30 as a beginning date, even though I was fluttering on my Flight Plan over this past week and I know full well that will happen from time to time.  This year, June 30, 2012 – June 30, 2013 brings important changes in our family that I want to be ready for as they come.  Our youngest will have two important and simultaneous surgeries in August – one on her left leg and one on her right hand, both to correct effects of hemiplegia caused by a brain tumor discovered and removed when she was 5.  Our oldest is entering her senior year of high school and preparing for graduation and college.  How many of her animals will she take to her 5 semester vet tech training program with her, and how many will be left for Mom and Dad to keep for her?  Let’s see… 5 rabbits, a cat, a chinchilla, and a chicken at present count.

And Mom (that’s me) wants to add a dog – my dog!  Yes, I know it will be a family dog with the same responsibility as adding a child.  I grew up with a dog.  I’ve wanted my own my whole life!  And I turned 50 this year!  It’s about time!  Do you hear me? (stamps foot)

Oh, also, I’m going into a second year in the same job (teaching students who speak English as a Second Language) which hasn’t happened for about 4 years since I left a 20+ career teaching students who are deaf or hard of hearing.  Maybe now I can settle into the two school buildings I’m assigned to instead of storing teaching materials at home.  Maybe I can finish out my career there and not have to wonder if and when I will use materials.  I can begin to keep, throw, and bless others.

So… timeframes and goals….. so we’re ready for those important events…

-teaching materials stored at present in a corner of the basement and around my desk which is in the middle of our house – need to go through them to keep, throw, & bless others

-basement family room cluttered and therefore uninviting – keep, throw, bless (Post pictures online of items for sale)

-declutter baskets in master bedroom of items stored when we moved our youngest in (gave teen sister a break from rooming with kid sister)

-declutter and prepare teen daughter for moving out and freeing up bedroom for younger sister, thereby freeing Mom & Dad from sharing room space with child, prepare to move my new dog in!!!  Did you hear the growl?  That wasn’t the dog.  That was the husband.  Not a dog fan.

-mail kept in cardboard box has become “project” for DH – need routine established for dealing with incoming mail daily

**Husband and kids left for weekend.  How many 15s (15 minute periods) can I do today and tomorrow so I can accomplish one goal or parts of more than one goal and also take some “me” time that is so important also?

Here’s my first short-term goal accomplished so I can move on to the bigger ones listed above.



Got the dishes done with a little help from Dr. Phil


A clean stove with a clean hand towel or dish towel makes a difference for the whole kitchen. Ready to move to the next project!

Flight Plan June 30 – Catch Up Time – Garden

I’m looking back now to see the date I started this.  I wanted to build in a specific timeframe for completing the goal of being at maintenance level in our home organization.  The FlyLady took 9 months to build her routines and get to the point where she could be 15 minutes from company at all times and beat CHAOS (Can’t Have Anyone Over Syndrome).  Using her already established routines, it should take me less time, right?  But I want a goal that I can make too!  How would it work to say, “Oh, sorry, let me revise that date.”  How much better to be able to say, “Woo hoo!  I made my goal in less time than I set for myself!”

Well, I started the Flight Plan blog on June 22.  I do want to post every day within reason.  If I can figure out how to quickly post words and/or pictures from my phone, I will certainly do so very regularly.  What I want to avoid is spending more time posting progress than I spend actually decluttering!!!  And that’s what happens when I spend my time figuring out how to post pictures, connect with Facebook and other media, and wonder how to get the feedback that is so essential to being accountable.

OKAY…. Catch Up Time

This week DH was in Canada, leaving our somewhat large garden to its own devices.  I commandeered the kids, and we cleared a significant portion of weeds to make life easier for Dad on his return and to do what I called “plant rescue”.  We literally could not find some of the smaller plants.  I did find that 15 minutes does not work so well for the kids.  Their 15 minutes produced minimal results and involved a lot of clock watching.  Instead, I got out colorful markers (oh, wish I’d taken a pic of those) and marked out the weed clearing territory for each of them.  It took more work to get them there than it did to actually weed, but once we were all working together, we did manage to make it enjoyable and completed the task in about 20 minutes.  What a valuable lesson in working together; doing a job you don’t really like for the end results of seeing your accomplishment; being part of growing the food we eat; helping someone else, etc, etc, etc.

The garden before starting. This section is corn. We also rescued some stray beans, left over by the rabbits and deer.

What a difference! There’s the corn AND the beans! Thanks for your help, kids! Couldn’t have done it without you.  (Ages 17, 13, 10, for those of you wondering how effective my kid helpers could be expected to be)

Next post will have long- and short-term goals

Flight Plan – Day 3

My goal is to declutter/organize something at least 15 minutes every single day.  But, as the FlyLady says, “You are not behind.  Do not try to catch up.  Just jump in where we are.”  Those are such freeing words to me!  I still plan to do my daily 15.  But if I get off track, if life gets in the way despite my best efforts, I will simply carry on where I left off and celebrate my accomplishments.  🙂

I did not get back to the basement family room yet.  But I did clear another hot spot.  My DH complained that the dish cloths were “rammed” into their drawer, and I decided to find out how much of what’s in that drawer we really need.  I emptied it, sorted, and replaced only what we need in about 2 minutes.  Plastic bags will be repurposed in our bag of bags.  A table runner I had “lost” was placed on the table, and we can now find dish towels, dish cloths, and hand towels as needed.  Yea!

See this!

I nearly forgot to take a before picture. Here are most of the accumulation removed from the drawer. A pile of plastic shopping bags is beyond camera range. How does it all fit in there?

Kitchen drawer – After
Much better! Ahhhh!

Isn’t it nice to have some side benefits for our efforts? I had been wondering what happened to that table runner. Now where’s a better place to store it?

Flight Plan – Day 2 Decluttering & Organizing the Basement Family Room

Decluttering 15 minutes at a time –

Back corner of basement family room – Before

Back corner of basement family room – 15 minutes later!












Next goal:

Another piece of the basement family room – soon will have the space needed to take pictures of items to post for sale that can then leave the family room. 🙂

Flight Plan – Day 1

June 21, 2012 –  Before and after

Basement family room – Before





20 minutes later…

Basement family room – After

Friday, June 22, 2012 – Medical appointment with my daughter in the morning, date with my husband in the afternoon and evening, DD’s floor hockey game at night

Goal for Saturday

Another corner of the family room – Before

A 9-Month Flight Plan

I’M A FLYBABY! There! You have it! I have purple rags, a Rubba Swisha, two Rubba Scrubbas, and a FlyLady calendar, and I’m taking flying lessons from the FlyLady’s daily e-mails.

My purpose for the next 9 months (that’s how long the Fly Lady took with hers) is to organize my house/life/routines to the point where my family and I can do the things we need and want to do each day easily. We will find the library books that need to be returned. We will have a pen when we need one. Our house will be a place to breathe a sign of relief when we come home at the end of the day and where we can relax and enjoy each other. Or get away from each other!! Bedrooms need to be havens of escape, not cluttered and anxiety-producing.

HERE’S THE WHY! I’ve been on a journey my whole life from one stage to another. I can even fit each stage into a neat little box that makes it easier to write about, even though the current stage has been filled with more hills and valleys than any of the others. After more than 20 years in the same itinerant teaching job, I have spent the last 4 years flying from one adventure to another and only now believe that I will land and stay while in the same two small communities that I’ve connected with in the past year. My home life is full of three kids whom I enjoy very much, the oldest of whom is preparing to do some flying of her own. They are all teaching me a lot and may show up here once in awhile.

Now it’s time! The kids played in the basement when they were younger. Now there’s no room! We have a kitchen counter and breakfast nook made to sit at but no counter space to put our dishes. Our laundry baskets are filled with orphaned socks. We have a cardboard box full of mail. And my desk is surrounded by bins and bags of teaching materials.

Now, HERE’S THE HOW! Sometimes I use the FlyLady’s Flight Plan for the day. Sometimes it’s my own plan based on current urgent need. Sometimes it’s a combination of the two! But I need accountability! Future blogs will not be this lengthy, but I do need to post what I’m doing each day in my own personal 9-month flight plan. I would be most grateful to receive feedback from others who may also be organizing their lives. My goal is to do something (15 minutes in length at minimum) each day for the next 9 months or less to reach the goal of maintaining established routines. I’ll have my house and job all under control and have more to give back to others.

So… I commit to posting every day the one extra thing I will do that day as part of my flight plan. I will not allow dishes and laundry to get in the way of spending at least 15 minutes on one extra thing!

TODAY’S FLIGHT PLAN: dishes & laundry around instrument lessons and Taekwondo, MY ONE EXTRA: Sort “Keep” (blue basket), “Throw” (red basket), “Bless” (white basket – to bless someone else with through sale or donation) in the basement and post picture.

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