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Sunday Thanks

24 Jun

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever.
-Psalm 135:1

Every Sunday lets give a little extra thanks to God for our gifts.

I haven’t forgotten, but I wasn’t at the computer to post or write as I meant to. I’m thankful for the ability to spend a lazy Sunday with my little family. I’m also thankful for yarn.

Honestly, I meant to write a post about the kindness of strangers, but it’s getting late so I will save that for another day, but I promise it’s a good story. 🙂

Stuff

21 Jun

Stuff.

I didn’t take pictures of my stuff for this post. But trust me. It’s there.

We all have it.  Stuff, our STUFF. Things. Possessions… STUFF. It seems to come in stages too. When you move out of your parents house, you get stuff, when you move, you get stuff, when you get married- stuff, have a baby MORE STUFF.

Ugh. My house is completely over-run by stuff. Mostly stuff I don’t need, or there is simply an excess of “need” stuff.  For example, one of the last times I counted I had 78 vessels to drink alcohol out of. Um. I really don’t drink and when I do it’s a small glass of red wine. And hubby has exactly 3 glasses that he uses. How did that happen? I also had almost 50 mugs. CRAZY. I’ve since cut them down. A lot. I also had nearly 70 cook books. I like to cook but JEEZALOO!  The list goes on but I will leave it at that.

I’d say the biggest source of our collections are gifts. We got tons of glasses for our wedding, and for whatever reason people always give us gifts including mugs. I like my tea, coffee and hot cocoa a LOT, but I would say at most I could use 3 mugs at a time and that’s a little excessive.

We also got a lot of hand-me-downs when we were first starting out as a married couple- or even before that when I moved back to NY with nothing but my Rav4 stuffed over the top (literally!) I was very, very grateful for the second hand furniture and dishes (and still am!) I had nothing and no money to speak of save to pay the rent. But, as we moved forward and around the state we gathered new stuff and the old stuff seemed to stick with us. I got attached if you can imagine that. I couldn’t just get rid of something, I’d say, “Oh, but we used this stuff when we first got back together…” or “But I might NEED that…”  and we can’t forget, “but so an so gave me this!” Thus, I became a pack rat.

With the twins came a lot more stuff. Really, babies don’t need much, but somehow there comes lots of stuff when you have a baby. And I had two, so you do the math- I assure you it wasn’t simply doubled. *sigh*

But… with the coming of the twins, I realized something very important about stuff. I didn’t want it. Didn’t need it. It was creating a hostile environment and not what I wanted for my children. I want them to grow up in a neat, clean, comfortable home. Have you ever cleaned a cluttered house? It takes forever. You have to move stuff to clean under it, you have more stuff to dust… It’s a pain. I need easy when I have two boys running around. Sure, they have and will have stuff, just the right kind and amount of stuff. This really kicked my butt into gear and I’ve been going through our home pulling things out of rooms, out of closets… and trying to move it out.  It’s a really difficult and almost emotional process but I’m making headway a little at a time.

At the same time I’m challenging myself not to buy “new” stuff to clutter up the newly cleared space. I can thrift for things we “need” (I have an on-going list) and play things for the boys (quality wooden toys are pricey, so if I see good stuff while thrifting I’m allowing myself the pleasure.) The exceptions are some fabric and notions (thread doesn’t have a great shelf life so I worry about buying second hand- I’ve already had a few ruined projects this way) and anything where hygiene would be a concern (panties, etc.) I may also allow myself yarn for knitting, but I would really like to thrift that too. I’m planning not to buy ANY “New” clothes for myself or the boys. I really foresee this being a challenge. Until recently, I really liked to shop. TJ Max was probably my favorite store- especially given it’s pretty much the only store in the area other than Walmart. Oh yeah, I’m going to try to avoid Walmart all together as well as any big box store… I wonder if I can keep myself out of Target, I really love Target…  but I digress.

This is the challenge. Clean out the house, and be mindful about what comes back in. Hm… I think that’s the key: Mindfulness. Ah…

 

(Speaking of mindfulness, I’m reading Sarah Napthali’s Buddhism for Mothers  I’m not Buddhist, but I have to say thus  far this is a great book for mamas. Maybe a book review will be in order? hm….)

Messy Mondays continue!

18 Jun

Each Monday I’m going to post a picture of a room in my home just as it is on Monday morning- no straightening, no organizing, no setting for the camera. It is just how it is. If you want to play along link to your blog/ page so we can all see. 

Oh my is it a very messy Monday…

First, last week’s messy room today:

And today, I give you the kitchen. *shudder*

Ah… my ever in use kitchen.

Love the counter. I’ve got the slow cooker rocking some perpetual soup, my new yogurt maker and jars, coffee pot and french press (because a mama can’t have enough coffee some mornings…).

Now.. a lovely lady shared her kitchen too for messy Monday so go visit the Woodworking Momma! http://woodworkingmomma.blogspot.com/2012/06/messy-monday-with-linky.html

She also made a linky for us! lets see if it works for me (I don’t work well with technology…)

 

Thanks for stopping by! If you want to make me feel better by sharing your Monday morning messes leave a link in the comments. Please, no picture perfect magazine spreads! :P

I have a confession…

23 Feb

I’m really not all that sassy. It’s been about a year since I decided to start this path to sassy housewifery, and what I have come to realize in that time is I don’t even think I want to be particularly sassy. What does that mean anyway? I realize, I want to just be a “Goodwife,” some culmination between stereotypical 50’s housewife, colonial goodwife and Victorian lady. Each had admirable traits and practices and from here on in, I’m less concerned with the “sassy” aspect. The only person I am trying to please is my husband (okay, and me, but I’m happiest when he’s happy.) So what are my goals now? Easy.

greet him with a smile when he comes home
Keep the house clean and tidy by following a schedule
Save money
make more things myself- I have the skills, why would I buy pre-made? there’s no reason
be thriftier
Cook dinner 6 nights per week (but planned overs count!)
Blog more- to get out my crazy.
Spend more time relaxing with hubby
exercise
Have a baby. 😛

Lately, I’ve been doing very well with all this, really. I’ve been inspired by another “This Happy Housewife” (LOL!I can’t tell who came first but it doesn’t matter to me) to create these awesome schedules for each day an make a “home management binder.” Here’s her blog: http://thishappyhousewife.wordpress.com/category/homemaking/schedules/
(Honestly, she’s much better at keeping up with hers than I am with mine. :P) But in any case, she’s got some great, very helpful information. I love her schedules, I can’t say it enough, I totally borrowed the idea and am working each week to see when are the best times for me to do such and such a task and how often. For example, I have three dogs (pit mix rescues) and two cats running around the house, plus my sewing and crafting which leaves a lot of little bits, fur, dust and dog toy innards scattered around the house. This means I need to put “vacuum” and “sweep” on my lists about 4-5 times per week instead of once or twice.

My trick to keeping up on things, I hate to say it, is duplicates (triplicates, etc…) of cleaning supplies. In each bathroom I have a caddy of favored cleaning supplies (I have two bathrooms- one on each floor) so it works out great to have one portable caddy designated to each floor so I’m not dragging things up the stairs. I also have two brooms, one in the downstairs kitchen, one in the upstairs bath, a dutch rubber broom upstairs (okay, that one gets hauled around, I need to order another one since it’s amazing for pet hair….)A mop designated for each type of flooring or cleaner- this is so that the mop for the bathroom and kitchen, whose floors I ocassionally bleach, doesn’t come in contact with the wood floors. Bleach and hardwood floors don’t mix! There are dust mops and swiffers (with reusable, crochet pads) for quick jobs and microfiber towels and extra rags in the Kitchen and both bathrooms. Luckily, I don’t have any carpeting upstairs so the dyson can live downstairs. 🙂

Something else that is helping a lot with keeping the house clean is the fact that I am getting rid of a TON of stuff, and finding good ways to organize what I’m keeping. Clutter isn’t pretty. And having a lot of clutter makes cleaning much harder because you have to constantly move things to clean under or clean around. It makes no sense. Its much easier to dust the entertainment center when it’s free of clutter, or wipe down the kitchen counters or sweep a room when there isn’t stuff everywhere. I was starting to feel VERY smothered. I like my things, and I’m one of those people who gets sentimental about the stuffs. “Oh, I can’t get rid of that, so and so gave it to me for such and such an occasion….” Or, “it’s an antique!” Well, antique means that it should make some money at the yard sale. lol. I didn’t get cold, I’m getting practical. Just because I am getting rid of a thing, doesn’t mean I’m getting rid of memories or the person who gifted it or who it reminds me of. It’s hard, but very liberating at the same time. I can’t wait to have my yardsale so I can clear out all the stuff that has been accumulating on my 3 season porch (where I’m storing everything that is “going” till the weather is warm enough for a yardsale. I thought about a porch sale, but there is officially more stuff than can fit well enough to accommodate both people and stuff in the porch. :P)

One last idea/ tip. Put on an apron. Seriously, it’s like a super hero donning a cape and mask, when I put on an apron something clicks in my brain. Suddenly I’m *drum roll…* Super-wifey! I guess it just puts me in the mood for domesticity. Another goal (*grin*) is to have at least enough aprons for one per day. That way… I can have a clean one each day, or mix it up a bit style-wise. And yes, aprons are cute! A lovely friend of mine recently gifted me an adorable apron that is pink and covered with skulls and crossed spoons! Oh, and the skulls are wearing hair bows (skull bows?) anyway, it’s absolutely adorable. I even wore it out in public. same with the pink floral one I made last year (go back into the archives for the tutorial- it’s wicked cute). Aprons are the domestic’s best accessory, I am thoroughly convinced of this.

So… that’s my life for now. I hope to blog more now that I have a clearer idea of my housewife goals. And I think I am going to change the name of my blog if I can figure out how…. 🙂