Monday, October 12, 2009

Baby steps and house blessings

Remember a few weeks ago when I declared I was back on the wagon with Fly Lady. (If not take a minute to refresh yourself by reading my post "Phew!"). Though I have only visited a time or two since, I have improved myself by leaps and bounds--my house is presentable again! That is, it is presentable between the hours of 9am and 2:45pm Monday through Friday except on holidays and teacher in-service days. Basically when the kids are gone the house is clean.

I suppose I should clarify "clean" a little more than even a time frame can do (because really truly, it is not clean, at least not as clean as I would like it to be). By clean I mean between the aforementioned hours you can't see chunks and crumbs of whatever on the floors; the bathroom sinks, counters and mirror are free of toothpaste and hair; all furniture is in it's proper position with seat backs in their fully upright position; pillows cushions and throw blankets are at their assigned stations; laundry baskets are not overflowing and all clean laundry that is not yet in a drawer or closet is neatly folded or hangered in the laundry room; kitchen sink is empty and shined! Yes, three weeks of work and that is what I have accomplished, impressive right?!

If you really are impressed you may be asking right now, "what else is there?" Oh, let me tell you: CLUTTER! (Did you see my face suddenly flush and hear my heart rate speed up and feel my palms get sweaty?) I have piles and corners and secret nooks and crannies (hot spots) full of clutter. They are keeping me from my goal of peace, happiness and cleanliness and that is just where Fly Lady is the most helpful: by encouraging baby-steps. I try everyday to take a baby-step that will help me overcome one of my hot spots of clutter. Even just 15 minutes is helpful.

For instance: Last week I took 15 minutes on Tuesday to clean out my paperfile on the kitchen shelf. Last Thursday I used up 45 minutes "facing" the canned goods in my pantry (facing is the grocery store term for lining up like products and facing the cans to the front so the contents can be easily determined). Friday I spent 15 minutes clearing off my nightstand putting away extra pencils, throwing away candy wrappers (shh!), and reshelving books. The baby-steps are helpful but oh, wow, have I got a million little hot spots. It is going to take a while before I am satisfied and feel clean all over. Deep breath . . . .baby-steps . . . "inch by inch life's a cinch". (Rinse and repeat.)

In following with FlyLady doctrine today, Monday, I will "Bless my House" in addition to my daily routine of chores. Here is the basic break down in case you are interested in such boring and completely useful topics.

Daily morning routine (takes about 30-45 minutes at an easy pace):
  • Dishes into dishwasher, shine sink, wipe counter tops, sweep
  • Start a load of laundry
  • Walk through house collecting misplaced items and relocating to their proper stations
  • Tidy and wipe bathrooms, checking soap, towel and TP levels, replacing as needed
House Blessing routine (At a quick pace can be completed in 60 minutes):
  • Dust horizontal surfaces
  • Wipe mirrors, windows, appliance fronts and tops, doorknobs and lightswitches
  • Vacuum all carpeted areas and bathrooms (easier to vacuum hair than to sweep it)
  • Antibacterial wipe down of all bathroom surfaces including the outside and backside of toilet (I hate this part).
  • Mop kitchen and bathrooms
  • (not included in 60 minutes) Take a nice long hot shower wiping down the shower with the Magic Eraser while enjoying the steam. Alternate showers each week so that each is thoroughly cleaned at least every other week.
Since I will be "blessing my house" today I will not do any clutter reduction exercises in my hot spots. However, in preparation for this weekend's Annual Great Pumpkin Carve and Donut Dunk I will be focusing on the following hot spots the rest of this week, spending no more than 15 minutes on each of the following: 1-Paper pile on the kitchen counter sorted and filed, 2- books, parakeet and new hermit crabs relocated from the dining room buffet, 3-old newspapers and magazines in front of fireplace recycled 4- return all books on downstairs shelves to their proper vertical position.

Pretty exciting stuff, I know. At this rate my house will be spotless by June, just in time for the kids to get out of school. Wish me luck on my baby-steps!

Read the whole series on my Fly Lady fun. Monday I "Blessed my House" , Tuesday is "Desk Day", Wednesday I ran errands, Thursday is catching-up day and Friday I get back to blessings.


  1. Another amazing and uplifting post. You are such a great gal. Always giving me motivation to improve myself and my home. By the way....your lesson in Relief Society was just perfect. Empathy is such an important virtue. I really loved to learn that we all have something to share and we all have had horrible/bad things happen to us....we just need to listen and open our hearts...Thanks Dani, for a great day.

  2. Although I find that it takes ME more time than it does the FlyLady, I do agree that it is WAY easier to stay on top of things with a daily routine than to wait until things pile up and then trying to tackle my whole house. I am also one of those that lets things go in the Summertime, opting for more fun things to do with the family, so I am also in the process of the "fall overhaul". Almost got the basement done! :)


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