Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Organization and Well Intentions

How often I bite off more than I can chew. BUT..... I find that IF I'm organized, I can somehow manage! So in an effort to blog, I've decided to create a system. That goes along perfectly with my type A nature! I've decided to have each day dedicated to a different "theme". This will hopefully keep me motivated AND accomplish a few of the things that are tugging at my heart.

I will break the days into the areas I WANT to talk about - hopefully this will make it less of a chore. Because I am NOT a writer, it sometimes feels "chore like" to stare at a blank page and come up with something! SO - the categories are...... (drum roll, please..)

Mondays Menu: Another attempt to post my meal planning, links to recipes, and share a few of my favorite foods :D

Tuesdays Top 5: whether it is organizing tips, books I've read, things I'm learning, disasters that have happened in our home JK, something that might inspire or at least commit to my memory through this blog, I will come up with 5 things!

Wednesdays Worship: I need to read and ponder the Bible more often than I am doing. This is an attempt to look at a piece of scripture, commit a portion to memory, use it in my life, see how big our amazing God is, and share.

Thankful Thursday: This is the day I want to share about my household. What I'm thankful for, what we've been up to, keep a journal of happenings to look back on when I'm old and gray. What a minute, I am old and gray. Well, highlighted and middle aged at least.

Fun Friday: Here I want to highlight Kalie's wedding process. We are having so much fun planning for her big day! I've decided that if God so chooses, I would trade out teaching for wedding planning as a full time occupation. I'll share my journey of how I have approached each vendor, thought, commitment, and idea related to this magical time!

WEEKENDS OFF unless otherwise inspired!

SOOOOO..... Because I want to be diligent, I will start today!

TUESDAYS TOP 5: How to stay organized!

1) A place for everything. I am forever harping on my children to pick up things and "put them in there place!". I have designated every spot in my house for something: pleasure, work, cooking, more formal gatherings, more casual hanging out. I've bought furniture and accessories that help in this process. We have organizers in our drawers to help declutter the utensils.

Because this is my philosophy, and not shared by all (ahem, Todd), I decided to move out of "our office" and create my own office in my daughter Ashley's old room. She moved out last summer (but still somehow shows up here regularly for meals and a night on the couch!), and now I have my own clean, organized space. IF you do anything for yourself: I implore you, make a spot just for you!

2) Time Management. Need I say more. I'm a list maker. Surprise! I'm also a control freak! Surprise! On my classroom white board I have a large area designated "Daily Routine". Under this title lists the day's activities - complete with times! Every student looks at that board several times a day. I watch their eyes move over it to see what's coming next!

I plan my time at home the same way! I make of list of "things to do" and then I go back and assign a "time frame" for each item. I then re-write the list so it is in chronological order from the beginning of the day until the end! If it's on the list, there is a 99% chance it will be accomplished. If it floats around in my head, 99% chance it won't! Because mom's have so much to think about, thoughts and ideas get lost all the time. By having it in writing, I can release my brain from storing that little piece of information. By assigning times, I can navigate my day to maximize accomplishment and minimize wasted time.

3) Meal Planning. The truth is - if I don't plan for it, it won't get done. This includes eating in my house. This is primarily due to the fact that I don't just throw together ingredients to create a fabulous dish. I'm a recipe reader. I love reading recipes and following along. I can throw in a few substitutions or change out meats to create new dishes, but I need a foundation in which to springboard from. On Saturdays, I plan my meals for the week. Once I have my plan (cooking at least 4 days with room for left overs), I make two lists. One list is the day with the designated dish ie Monday: Stir Fry with rice. The second list is the grocery list! I do this as I pick each meal. I jot down on a separate piece of paper all the items I need to pick up at the market to complete the meal.

Now whether we end up having a dish on that particular night (things do come up!), at least I know I have all the ingredients I need to prepare the meal. That is the part that makes eating possible in my house! This said, every kitchen does need staples. I will make that my next Tuesdays top 5: Staples every kitchen should have!

4)A Family Calendar! A place where everything is written down for every member of the family! This is the whole reason I bought my IPAD! A color coded calendar. Each member of the household has a color! Now I glance at my calendar and know exactly who needs to be where at what time! Now that my girls are in college, I rarely need to check on them. They still give me their semester schedule and any important dates that need my attention. The trick to this happening: Make sure you check in with your husband at least weekly to input any of his up coming activities! There's nothing worse than planning a family movie, only to find out he's sailing that day. Just saying.

5)Create alone time. Whether you are an early riser, a late to bed person, or find breaks in the day, you will need time to create lists, mentally go over schedules, or just sit before God quietly. We all need alone time to decompress and organize! This time is precious and only leads to positive outcomes!

Happy Organizing!

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