Friday, January 31, 2014

V and Co: back to organizing 101

last snow day I spent separating, sorting and organizing a lot of pink stuff
 We here in the midwest have been having a doozy of a winter. With frigid cold days, icy roads, and blizzard like conditions due to windy stormy snowy days...there have been more snow days and late starts in january alone than what it seems we had all of last winter! Don't quote me on that I didn't do my fact check so I could be lying...but none the less, we've had our fare share of snow days.
I've been using said snow days to my advantage and been doing some organizing. This last snow day I tackled my daughter's toys with her help.
Remember waaaay long ago when I used to talk about organizing like every other week it seemed? Yeah, well I've been off my organizing game for what now seems like 3 years. (The 6 months where we moved 3 times and then moved across country, and the last 2 and half years we've been been in our house we live in now.)
I used to talk about daily tasks and chores and quick tips of what I would do to help keep the house somewhat organized. This last little bit I've been off kilter, not completely, but just enough that I've not been feeling like I've had my organizing game face on...and well, I think I'm finally getting back on track. At least it seems like these last few months I've found a home for everything and I've been reincorporating my little quick tricks every day.

here's a couple of things that I used to do daily...didn't do for the last while I've been feeling "off" my organizing game, and what I've started to do again...which has made me feel like I'm getting my organizing act together again.

first things first:
*I've gotten rid of unused, unworn, and extra "things" that didn't necessarily need to be clogging up space in my house. 
*I've found permanent homes for most things in the house (for the time being at least, because this house definitely needs more storage cabinet built ins, which will happen as the funds are saved up to have them installed)
*I've started the whole process with the closets and moved out. (if you start the purging with your dirty little stashing places like closets and drawers, then you can make closets and drawers permanent "homes" for things, which means easier times putting things away)

AFTER I did the three things above I now do these few little tricks every day/couple times a week to keep the organizing "going":
*Daily Make beds in mornings (I make my kids do their own beds...sometimes it's a stretch that they even tried and have walked away saying they did it, but because I know some mornings are more rushed than other's I don't really get super anal about it, I go behind them after they go to school and straighten it out...Summer time is completely different story I am a little more particular as there's ample amount of time.) There's something about having beds made that just makes the day seem better and almost puts you in a "jump start" to the rest of the day. I SWEAR BY THIS. 
*Daily Do one cleaning chore (i.e. mop floors, or dust all furniture upstairs. Write it out on a list if you need helping remember what day you are going to do what.)
*Weekly/Daily: Designate at least 10 minutes to empty out completely one or two drawers/cabinets...could be as small as a cosmetic or junk drawer,  or go bigger and devote even longer (45 minutes) and do a larger project like your pantry cabinet. (depending on how many drawers/cabinets you have, you'll start to see that the organizing gets easier to do and less time will be needed to do this task because most likely you'll repeat places after a few months)
If trying to do this daily is too much try designating one day a week you do this...that's how I started and now I'm back to being able to do it a few times a week...the goal is to do something once a day (like I used to.)
*Daily: At night have everyone put back things where they belong. That way you start your morning with a put away house, and all you have to do is the daily chore and the one organizing on your list.

Those are the just the few things I've incorporated back into my life that seems to be helping me get back on track.
Granted there are weeks where things just happen and the LAST thing I want to do is keep the routine going. But if you tackle it slowly...and steadily...bad weeks will not be huge starting points again...just a little extra help will be needed to get back on track.

Every day I work on the house right after the kids go to school and I go to work (um in my house, downstairs in my basement...but, yes, I "go to work"). Because I have to work on deadlines and such things I can't spend the whole day I allot myself only an hour to hour and half in the mornings. I'm usually working on sewing/blogging/deadline related work by no later than 10 am...(unless kids or husband need me to do some kind of errand/or I have to take the dog to the vet, child to the ortho and all the other jazz I have to do because well...I'm MOM and that's what we do...). I don't spend all day doing this just like I didn't back when I had all my kids under my feet every waking moment of the day. I still want and need to do other things, and I don't want to burn out on organizing either. Although I do have to admit, it gets addicting and I've realized just how.much.I'

I honestly feel like it's taken me a long time to get back to this. Like I had to make that choice to start the process all over again because it's been years...(and YES, it's daunting to start again...let alone start all together!) Now that I've been doing it for a couple of months, and not talking about it because I wanted to see if this was just a fluke and it wasn't who I was anymore...or maybe I just wasn't ready to do it like I used to just yet. But I feel like I'm seeing a moderately organized home again. I feel like it's not so scary to finally finish the process of settling in this house...and finally getting it organized. Is it  Perfect? Am I going for perfect?  Oh swear word no...that's not who I am and remember WE LIVE yeah it's gonna be lived in...
But yeah.
It's coming along.
And I feel like I've come back to a step closer to what I used to think was just part of me...after it not being a part of me for a few years...
It feels good.

just one disclaimer:
Don't go look in my sewing room just yet (or try like ever). That's on a completely different black hole agenda...kind of like my email inbox...(personally I'd like to set fire to my email inbox)
On another note... I've managed to bypass and trick the Overlord by setting out decoy fabric so that I could work on some stuff...and well look for a Valentine How To come this monday. (Yay! It turned out cute and it's super easy and I'm making a few kits to sell if anyone is interested, so come back Monday.)
Have a great weekend. And I hope you get some organizing done in the near future...and if you have an Overlord at your house...may you decoy your way back into some work...
We'll talk soon. 


RaspberrySunshine said...

My schedule is similar to yours but you have WAY more fun stuff in your studio than mine LOL.

My studio is in the basement too, but part brick red color and mustard. Let me tell ya, it does not make fabric look good! So while I don't have a lot of organizing to do (we just moved from FL to NY) I have a lot of painting to do LOL. Cindy

mascanlon said...

Funny how these good habits disappear and we miss them. You have inspired me to rethink my approach!

Nicki Rocky said...

Glad to see someone else's cat gets in on the action. I have just spent ten minutes wiping down my "between coats" nest of tables after from the muddy paw prints that my little darling has left all over the (thankfully) dry paint!

Bennett and Graves said...

I do the 15 minute clean. It's amazing what you can accomplish in steps when you don't look at hours and hours of work. Usually I can get something, like the cluttered top of my dresser, totally done. Then walk away. Neat website if you're looking for big info.

Kimberly said...

I find I'm at my cleaning best when company announces 15 minutes before arriving that they're on their way. Works like a charm.

elizabeth said...

What an awesome I Spy photo :)

KMSC said...

The picture of your daughter's toys would make a fantastic puzzle! Thanks for the organizing tips; I can use all the help I can get.

Quilt Fabric Pizazz said...

Organizing applies to every room in the house except the studio! If it is too tidy, it stiffles creativity. Too much organization in the studio is great on a magazine cover, but impractical in real terms. Creativity is just messy! Live with it and create! LOL!

Elsa said...

I have several Overlords at my house and one of them is always on something I need when I'm in my sewing room ~ otherwise they don't come in. And, I too would love to set fire to my email ~ I can't seem to delete.
I'm not the most organized person ~ I could probably use some help.

elizabeth said...

this is a great post! We moved this summer and also began the building of my new studio (personal training/pilates/massage) so we have been feeling very discombobulated... we too feel that making the bed every am helps, and simply tidying up common areas at night has been huge. thanks for some more tips! And i am glad to hear your sewing ctr is untidy!! Mine is too, and the cat seems to reign supreme in there! :) My cat looks like a fatter version of yours!

jeifner said...

I just get too excited about cleaning while I do it and don't want to stop. I bet a time limit would work great for me, thanks for the idea!

Joanne Roth said...

I just wanted to tell you I love your blog. This post was so well timed-- I think everyone I know has felt a loss of momentum during January and some re-organizing will be just the thing to jump start February!

Annalia said...

Ha! Our cats look like siblings!

The Yoder's Five said...

Overlord! Ha!!! (So true though..) I love the decoy fabric, that is brilliant and I'm going to start doing that.

I spent most of January organizing and sorting to get ready for a new baby but now that I thought I was done, my brain goes, "NO WAIT! The pantry! Your sock drawer! Your nail polish/lotion/jewelry drawers! Your 6 bins of fabric!!" So basically I am never going to be done. But once the purging is over and things are organized, it's much easier to keep things that way. I had to clean out my daughter's junk while she was at school so she wouldn't realize how much of her old stuff I was getting rid of.

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