Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Creating Homemaking Routines

The one thing I seem to have the most trouble with is housekeeping.  There are just too many things I'd rather be doing than cleaning sinks and bathrooms.  And let's face it, they will just need to be cleaned again tomorrow.  It is never ending!  

I used to keep a spotlessly clean house. Yes. I did. Believe it!  But life happened.  A series of life happenings started in 2010 that kind of shut me down for a while.  It became a success for me to just get through the day with the kids fed and some school done.  The apartment we lived in got more and more cluttered.  The carpet more worn. The sinks and bathrooms more overwhelming.  Life can do that to you.  

But God restores all things and 2013 was my year for restoration.  God mended my heart with the birth of our sweet Simon.  And He opened a path for us to buy a home.  A home that I am determined to keep clean and clutter free.  A place for refreshment.

How am I going to do this?  I looked back to the time when I was able to stay on top of the chores.  I had a routine then.  But it wasn't one of my own making really.  At that time I was purchasing an e-book annually that had a cleaning schedule already laid out for me.  I used it for several years until I thought I had a good routine down and then I quit buying it, thinking I could keep it up in my own.  I didn't though. 

In the interim I tried a couple of other resources.  One in which I used color coded (I love color coding) post-it's to arrange tasks for specific times of the day.  This was visually appealing to me, but too detailed as I was never on schedule and so I constantly felt behind. The other I tried used e-mail reminders as motivation to complete tasks.  I quickly learned to ignore those e-mails.  Yeah, that didn't work so well.

So with the new year coming up quickly, I decided to go back to my favorite chore schedule! MOTIVATED MOMS. I love it because it not only schedules the little day to day things (so I get to satisfy my "box checker" tendencies and look like I'm actually getting  something done, but it also includes the annual home maintenance things that we tend to neglect or forget (such as changing the furnace filters).
I was truly excited about ordering the e-book for 2014 when I got a big surprise.  They now have an APP!  Yay!

AND, I CAN COLOR CODE IT!!  Yes, little things make me happy! Perhaps the most exciting thing about the app for me is that I can assign tasks to different family members so it's not all on me :)

More Great News!  Motivated Moms is on SALE thru 1/2/14!

• Get $2 off all e-books using code MM2014.(regularly $8)
• Android apps are $5.99 at Google Play and Amazon (regularly $7.99)
• iOS app is 99¢ (regularly $1.99) and a year subscription, an extra 12 months, can be added for $5.99 (regularly $7.99). That's a total of 14 months!  Can you say "BARGAIN"!!

New year, new home, new baby, and a new app for a new start on my housekeeping routine!  I can't wait to get started!

Creating Personal Care Routines

I love routines.  I think they are an easy way to reduce the stress of daily tasks. If tasks are done in a certain order each day they become automatic and we can use that mental energy to stress over other more important things ;) 

I used to be really on top of our daily routines, but over the past year or two I've increasingly let them go. It's gotten to the level that even the most basic things aren't getting done.  In my defense, I have been pretty busy this year.  First with a new baby, then overcoming breastfeeding challenges; add to that house hunting (stress), and finally moving (STRESS).  I was doing good just to get food in the big kids' bellies and many days my husband did that for me. 

Now that all of our big transitions are over for a while I've been thinking of four main areas that I find routines beneficial in our home. Personal Care, Homemaking (cooking and cleaning), Home Management (budgeting and administration), and Homeschooling. This week I've decided we're going to tackle Personal Care since that is the area that seems the most foundational to me and in which everyone needs to take some responsibility for themselves. 

Personal Care is the way we keep our bodies healthy. Yesterday I asked the kids to list all the ways they could think of to keep our bodies healthy.  
We are starting with this list and I plan on expanding on the topics throughout the year; perhaps doing a unit on nutrition and learning to make healthier foods and snacks. Have we missed anything?  What ways do you keep your body healthy?

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