Saturday, April 9, 2011

Making Progress: 52 Weeks of Organizing... My Life

Hello, all you shabbychicks out there!
I'm writing from oneshabbychick central over here...
to give you an update on what I've been up to with my big project...

52 Weeks of Organizing √† la Laura, the Organizing Junkie.

It's all about choosing 52 organizing projects or habits that need to be done or 
developed around your home…
and working on a different one each week.

I haven't found the time or energy to throw myself into a larger project right now
...much more fun to throw myself into Spring Tablescaping instead...

so I have been focusing on developing some new habits around here...
and have slowly made some changes in my routine that are making my life better...
and more organized!



Change # 1

The first thing that I realized needed to change around here was my morning routine...
or lack thereof.

I really do love to get up early in the morning...
before the monkeys are up...
and have some quiet time to myself before the craziness ensues.

But when late-night rehearsal schedules take over, 
I often have to choose sleep over that morning time...
...I 've learned the hard way that Mama needs sleep in order to survive when life gets 
a little crazy...
But I have a tendency to get into a sleeping-in rut and stay there even after life slows down again.

So I have reinstated my early wake-up time...
and it's been great.

I get my feet under me before the day really begins...
and I feel like I've spent some time on myself before I start taking care of everybody else...
which sets up my whole day to be better. Yay.


Change # 2

On the recommendation of Bearded Iris
{who inspired me, in her fabulous irreverent fashion, to take on the 52 Weeks challenge}
I got Laura the Organizing Junkie's book, Clutter Rehab... 
and have been inspired to use some of her great tips, like...

#27. Set a grocery shopping day and stick to it.

I have never been able to make this work before...
and I have to admit that the only reason it is really working for me now is that 
Tuesday is consignment day at the Op Shop... 
which happens to be across the street from my Trader Joe's...
so now, without fail, I am over there on Tuesday morning.

Voilà. Grocery day.

Which led me so conveniently to...
#26. Start every week with a menu plan.

I have realized that my life is so much easier when I know what's for dinner...
and even more so when the ingredients are actually in the house... ya know?

But it's hard to make a menu plan 
when you don't really know when you're going to the grocery store...
and it's hard to know what to buy when you're there if have no idea what's for dinner...
so I've basically been flying by the seat of my chef's pants for a while.

Not anymore.
Monday is now Menu Plan Monday.
Now this is not an elaborate plan... 
I've also learned that that doesn't work for me.

This is more like...
 spend 10 minutes considering what's in the pantry and freezer
and what I've got a hankering for...
and come up with three or four meal ideas for the week.

I don't plan what days we're going to eat each meal...
I need a little bit of mystery in my life...
Plus I just never know which day Sloppy Joes are going to be calling my name...

I don't plan more days because we always have a few nights a week 
that don't really work for a family dinner because of work schedules...
so we have easy, fall-back recipes those nights... 
{when in doubt, have breakfast-for-dinner}

This fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants version of menu planning is just my style.
And it's really working for me. Yay.


Change # 3

OK, this one has definitely been the most fun...
and has to do with what I've been doing with all that early morning time...

Once I had this block of time to myself again...
I had to decide how I was going to spend it.

Here's what I came up with... 

 ~ I want to relax and enjoy my first cup of coffee...
(not slurp it down in between fits of throwing things into lunchboxes and wrangling monkeys for breakfast, inevitably forgetting half of it and finding it later when it's stone cold)

~ I want time to enjoy the stacks of books and mags I love 
that pile up around here and never seem to get read...

~ I want to spend a few minutes planning my day...
{see #47. Utilize notebooks and lists and #48. Set your daily top-three to-dos!}

~ I want to be ready for the day when it's time to wrangle those kids so that when bus stop time arrives I'm not holding things up because I'm still in my bathrobe... duh...


So as my morning routine evolved, I had to decide where I would be when I was... 
 drinking my coffee... reading my mags... planning my day.

I knew where I wanted to be...
in my cozy white chair in the living room.

But I realized it wasn't really set up for that... 
and that what I really needed was... 
an office in my living room.
Oh yeah.

Bring on #55...
Store stuff where you use it.


Conveniently, I had just hit the PB clearance section again...
and had a fresh bargain basket looking for a job.


I loaded it up with magazines, decorating books, my iPad and charger, post-its, pens...
and there's lots more room for anything else I might need in "my office".

So this is where you can find me during my office time...


Yay!


and that's what this oneshabbychick has been up to...
anybody else out there having some fun with organizing?


productively yours, 
osc