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

Posts tagged ‘homemaking’

Flight Plan – It’s just 15 minutes, or is it?

Yesterday was Day 2 of a migraine.  I’ve had headaches for years.  They used to last 3 full days – not usually the flat-out-on-your-back-in-the-dark kind, but the annoying, nagging, please-talk-quietly-around-me-and-keep-the-lights-low, just-feeling-kinda-yucky kind.  They are now lasting 2 days instead of 3 – yes!, maybe because I know more now of how to keep them more at bay.  First, you catch it right away before it has a chance to get really bad.  After that, for me it’s a combination of ibuprofen and caffeine.  I can’t normally take too much caffeine.  But when I have a migraine, a grab a can of caffeinated pop (usually Dr. Pepper) and treat myself to a bar of dark chocolate.  Almost makes it something to look forward to – almost!

Well, as I said, yesterday was Day 2 of the requisite two day migraine and I was scheduled to drive over 2 hours to pick up my kids from Grandma & Grandpa Camp.  Besides that, I didn’t feel like I’d accomplished all of my goals for my week of decluttering without kids.  Could I get into the basement for one 15-minute session?

Here was my Flight Plan for the day:  I posted pictures and updated previous postings on our local Buy & Sell site with items already cleared from the basement.  Then I headed for the basement with two timers.  I set one timer to count up and one timer to count down from 15 minutes.  When the 15 minute timer went off, I continued on until I finished what I was doing.  The count-up timer let me know how much time I actually worked.  And here’s what I accomplished:

Here is the “before” picture from earlier this summer.

Here’s the part finished today. A couple of those bins contain items that will be sold, donated, or thrown away.

Here’s my donation to my mother!

After clearing out a box of craft materials, I was able to take a bag of x-stitch pattern books, material, and etc. to my mother who will put it to much better use than I have.  Then I got back to the shelves that I had started earlier in the summer and found them and the bins on them to be covered in a film of dust.  Easy to take care of, but what a difference it can make!

32 minutes or two 15s


By the time I decided to stop, three shelves down, I had spent 32 minutes total in the basement – or two 15s.  Not a lot of time or effort, but a significant accomplishment in the decluttering battle!

I had time to pack for overnight, take a short nap and shower, allowing time for last traces of migraine to dissipate before heading out for my 2-hour drive.  Nice accomplishment for  the day!


Flight Plan – What’s under the sink?

I’m a blue ButterFLY Baby. I’m FLYing, baby!

I’m trying to remember what FlyLady says about not being hard on ourselves when we don’t get done what we wanted to do.  Stay positive, look at what we’ve accomplished, and not at what didn’t get done, and move forward!  I’ve had the goal all week to do 15-minute increments of decluttering in the corner on the right side of my desk.  I did the left side of the desk the last weekend in June and haven’t made it to the other side yet.

Here’s the good news!  I cleared a stack of paper on my desk and found a couple of forms I had needed  Yes!

6 egg cartons, 5 bottles of cleaner, 4 shampoos & conditioners, 3 cutting boards, 2 boxes of scrubbies, and 1 pile of collected dirt and crumbs

Then I got frustrated by our empty kitchen garbage can.  I mean really empty!  On garbage pick-up day, I start collecting little piles of trash, because the box of trash bags is on a shelf in the garage and I have to find a pair of shoes and go out to get a bag from that box.  Too much trouble.  Today I finally decided to clear a space for the box in the cupboard under the kitchen sink, right next to the trash can!! This meant clearing out a few other things….  1 box of SOS pads and 1 box of sponges with scrubbies on the other side.  I have since learned about the high bacteria count in kitchen sponges and no longer use them.  I have purchased antibacterial sponges that can actually be washed in the washing machine and not thrown away.  Green, yes!  Also, 6 empty egg cartons!  Yes, 6!  Why?  Only because they had fallen toward the back of the cupboard where they couldn’t be seen.  I am now donating them to the “egg lady,” a local woman who raises her own chickens and sells the eggs.

Everything in its place, including the box of kitchen trash can liners, and a freshly lined trash can

My afternoon was spent with two of my kids at the local swimming pool.  A day well spent!

Flight Plan – July 9, 2012 On or off the flight plan?

I’m a Butterfly Baby!

I am happy to report that I have my first few followers.  It’s encouraging to know that someone is following my efforts and that I could have feedback on what I post.  Here is part of one of the comments I have received, along with my response to it.

“Your decluttering efforts are admirable.  Having a decluttered house should make for more peaceful children.  But where does the stuff go that is moved?  I have a big problem with this too.  Where to put it?”   My response:
Much of the clutter in our house is stuff that needs to go anyway.  Kids’ toys that our kids have outgrown, projects kids have brought home from school, etc.  We have a local area Facebook group where people post things to buy and sell, like Craigslist.  I’m planning to take pictures of everything and post them on the site.  If they’re not worth selling, we can put them out on the curb for free.  I put clothes out for the Epilepsy Foundation recently, along with a doll cradle complete with doll & clothes.  Someone stopped by and picked up the doll cradle for themselves.  I call that blessing others with what we no longer need.

There are people like my dad who want to keep everything, including things that no one else will want even for free!  I think the rule is that if you haven’t used it in 5 years, it’s likely you’re not going to.  I’m having to decide that we can throw things away if no one will ever use it.  What I do is put things out for free.  If no one else wants it, I can feel free to throw it.  We got rid of some things last year when we had a roof redone and had an industrial sized garbage bin in our driveway.  I feel bad about what’s going into the landfill.  Then I firm up my resolve not to bring anything into the house that we don’t truly need.

I’m FLYing with the FlyLady – babysteps.

I get daily e-mails from  She is very encouraging and gives daily missions and monthly zones.  You build routine, babystepping your way to a peaceful, organized home.  The other day the FlyLady said that a mother duck does not make her ducklings follow her.  She takes the lead and they get in line and follow.  Once the family sees the changes happening, they are supposed to get in line with it too.  I live in the hope that my children and husband will pick up the routines so we can all make it part of our daily life.

So far, cleared surfaces are staying clear.  My worst “hot spot” is my desk where papers collect, but I’m clearing that more often too.   Every little bit makes a big difference.  It makes the rest easier, just seeing the progress.  Having the accountability of posting my progress makes a difference for me too.  I feel like I have to do at least 15 minutes of something that I can post.  Someone could be seeing it even if they don’t comment.  It would be great though to have someone who is posting their progress also, so we can keep each other accountable.

Asparagus & black beans on rice – something I accomplished today

My flight plan today:  I dropped off my youngest for the bus to summer school, then had some breakfast and took a 20 minute walk.  Walking is a goal I had made that I haven’t done very well at.  By the time I checked e-mail and talked with the insurance company about tween DD’s upcoming surgery (more on that to come), it was time to pick her up from summer school and whisk her over to her baritone lesson.
Following baritone lesson, all 3 kids registered for 4-H projects at our local Extension office, followed by lunch at home.  Tween DD Emily and I visited neighbors down the street with little girls that we wanted to get together – an important goal for Emily who doesn’t have many neighborhood friends.    Then DS off to TaeKwanDo , supper at Godfather’s buffet, off to watch DH’s softball game, then home to get Emily to bed so she can get up for summer school again in the morning.
So did I accomplish my Flight Plan for today?  I needed to make SWAPS for our upcoming CHASA retreat for families of children with hemiplegia, and I wanted to clear the bench by my desk that is becoming a “hot spot”.  Neither of these things happened.  I did accomplish things that needed to happen – yes!  Going to have to work fast  tomorrow to make the real Flight Plan fit into my day!  It will work!  Even though the only change between today’s and tomorrow’s schedules is that teen DD has an oral surgery appointment instead of tween DD having a friend meet and greet.  Oh, no TKD either.  Okay, it will work!

Flight Plan – July 6, 2012 Heat wave breaking…Can I reach the window for fresh air?

My 15 for the day, well, maybe it was half an hour today.  Organizing bins of teaching and office supplies.  My bins have been stacked to overflowing in front of the window.  With our recent heat wave, this hasn’t been an issue.  But the 99 degree temps are supposed to break overnight, and I’ll be happy to welcome the fresh outside air again!  Now I can reach the window!

This is the continuation of sorting out the bins of teaching materials in the corner by my desk. They have been overflowing, and therefore not looking neat and organized. Besides the block easy access to opening the window.

I sorted out materials to post for sale, shifted other materials between bins so that I have 2 bins of teaching materials that will return to classrooms and 1 bin of office supplies for home. Looks much better, and I can open the window now.


Flight Plan – July 5, 2012 Flying partners ??

DH’s turn this time!  He organized the refrigerator, including the meat and cheese drawer, and threw out outdated food items.  Looks good!

No before picture, but you all know what your refrigerators usually look like. You know… when it’s hard to find what you know is there, and science experiments are growing somewhere in the back – long forgotten.
Hey! This looks great! Now to post this picture somewhere so we can refer back to it when things start to slip. This is what an organized refrigerator can look like!

I spent my morning picking up teen DD, Cierra, and friend from a sleepover; taking tween DD, Emily, to pick up her new glasses frames and teen DS, Jordan, to get his glasses adjusted; dropping off friend at home; picking up hay for our 4-H rabbits; shopping for sunglasses for all 3 kids for our upcoming vacation; and bringing Jimmy John’s home for lunch.

Pretty pink glasses with green bows and sparkles on the corners
Pretty cute!

My afternoon was spent helping kids finalize their registration lists of 4-H projects and taking Emily to her adaptive swim lesson.  This evening I washed the day’s dishes and mixed up a strawberry ice cream recipe to put in the ice cream maker in the morning.

Homemade strawberry ice cream – Yum!

20ish minutes to fresh homemade ice cream – One way to bless my family!

Tomorrow is scheduled to be our last record-breaking hot day for awhile, so we’ve scheduled a waterpark day.  So when will I make the cards for our SWAPS that we will share at our upcoming CHASA family retreat, fold the waiting laundry, and post items for sale online?  They will get done!  I am not behind!  I will jump right back in when the time is right.  After all, it’s summer vacation for the kids and myself.  I will regret it when they’re away from home if I don’t do the fun things with them right now.

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