Thursday, April 17, 2014

Let me introduce some orgnization

Meet my new outgoing mail and key holder.
(And in a minute you can meet my new bill system too!)

Last week I showed you what I got from the thrift store.
They are these vintage basket/wicker looking mirror and wall basket, made of plastic.

They had some appeal to me as is, but I got some paint and some hooks from hobby lobby. (You’ll notice I changed my mind on the hook style.)

Folk Art Brand in Jamaican Sea and Light Gray

And I gave them some love.

I spent around $20 for the mirror, basket, hooks (50% off sale), and paint.
Which is right around the price I was seeing one premade mail/key things….only I really love mine.


I’m short, so I put the mirror at a height I thought looked good, and I could also use as a "one last look” while standing on the stair as I grab my keys. (I have no idea if this is true, but I assume average (aka tall sized to me) people can see themselves from the ground.

I was proud of myself, because I ended up hanging these all on my own. I had been planning on asking Blake to.  But I then decided I most certainly have the skills to do this, why not just do it!?
I did the layout with paper first. And I used my iPhone’s level to make sure all the holes were gonna be straight. (I didn’t wanna mess up, paneling isn’t as forgiving as drywall when you need to make holes disappear.)

I’m using the basket to hold mail that needs to get to the mail box. And these key hooks will hopefully save my sanity, in providing a life free from, “WHERE ARE MY KEYS!?!"

The quote on the door, isn’t a quote. It’s a revelation I had this past week.
(And the stuff under it, is my almost two year old’s art. She’s in her "line period” as an artist. It’s blury because my almost four year old is in her “hands covered in chalk from the chalk board are hilarious, and everything is art period” as an artist.)

With all I had going on, house remodeling, and birthdaying every weekend last month, I spent a lot of my time trying to recuperate, but that meant not doing any house work. And by the time I went to catch up on it, it took me a whole entire sunday afternoon (meaning Blake was keeping the girls busy) to get just the kitchen back in order.

When the next day went so much smoother than all the days with it messy had been, I realized that the give and take of things was off for me. I needed to start keeping up with everything at least a little bit, because it works better. So I wrote that note to remind myself. 
I tend to want to check out on house work, and recover from life, before my tasks are done because I find mothering small kids to be a serious emotional drain on me. In the moment I feel like I am making the right choice, but I’m starting to see that it’s actually making everything more emotionally challenging for me. I don’t enjoy spending time in a disaster zone, just biding my time till the kids are in bed so I can get it done in peace. So I’m working towards balance on that.

I spend nearly a whole week really going hard at getting the house back in shape. And to be honest, I went too hard, I got super burnt out. I was nonstop all day and then Crabby McCabberson at night.

I’m glad I did the hard fight that week because I recovered the house’s main things (like cleaning the bathrooms that hadn’t seen cleaner for months…how did months go by so fast? Must be all the painting I’m doing.)
But now I’m trying to do the one bite a day kind of cleaning.
I’m not in a routine yet, and I still lean towards the “I’d rather wait till later” attitude, but the house has been more together than it’s been.
I’m not some one is inclined to this naturally, so when I’m in remodeling mode, it’s really a challenge. But I decided I’m not gonna wimp out, I’ve done harder things than this, it’s time to man up. (Women up? ---just doesn’t sound as good.)

So with gusto under my belt,
I went all home management binder.

These always seemed like overkill to me when I learned about them a few years back. Never wanted one. But that was pre-kids. Post kids, my brain retains nothing. (I don’t think it’s hormonal, I think its the fact that I hear sounds nonstop, all day long, every single day. My brain doesn’t know what to keep in there anymore.)
So I need a book to keep my thoughts for me.
Enter google and pinterest, and... here she is, in all here still-need-to-flesh-it-out glory.

But she’s got a bunch of good stuff in addition.

I’m using plastic sheet protects and wet erase markers over these, so I don't have to print them out all the time. 
I did however print out 7 because I like to look back at least a week and feel accomplished.

I printed out maybe like 4 different cleaning lists I thought might work for me, and I’m gonna kinda just wing it and see what ends up being my system.
(For now, I’m learning I can’t count on anything working forever.)

As far as food goes, I’ll do another post on that (hopefully tomorrow) but here’s a link to what I’m using (and loving.)
(Next two pics belong to that.)

I also am gonna write down my passwords for websites, because I’m just starting to forget them all the time.

Like neighbor contact list. 
(I printed that one hoping to motivate myself to go meet them)

Then I made up this one (Well changed up one someone made to use differently) to keep track of Blake’s work schedule for semesters, since it’s usually different every day. Just so I can know when he’ll need to leave early, stay late or what time is a really bad time to call him.

And some other random stuff like a Christmas gift list I can add to over time. (Hopefully not feel so lost last minute.)

All the sheets I have in there are these:
  • Cleaning Lists *(As I figure out my own)
  • Daily Docket
  • Menu Planning
  • Password Log
  • Birthdays & Anniversaries
  • Family Contact Sheet
  • Friend Contact Sheet (I think these two are handy for mailing stuff)
  • Neighbor Contact Sheet
  • Blake’s Schedule
  • Christmas List
  • And a couple lists I used to keep around when the girls were smaller that helped me get out the door with them or keep their clothes in order. (Those are almost just nostalgic.)

I also want to make up:
  • A master grocery list (typed up staples that I circle in wet erase, as I get low each week)
  • A list of ideas for things to do as a family
  • And a list of things to tell Blake/ talk about with him (I told you, I retain nothing right now)

And then the Pièce de résistance.the bills. It gets its own book.

I used to be in charge of paying the bills way back long ago. But once we moved to Iowa I was a little too emotionally challenged (with facing down a potential homebirth VBAC or repeat c-section) for my brain to handle numbers (I really really really suck at numbers) so Blake took over.

But now we are kinda trading places, hes kinda too challenged with this new job to give much time or thought to getting the bills out. So Im gonna take back over.

In order to make this not break my soul (Not actually being overdramatic -- I just am that dramatic inside) I need a really good system. And I FOUND ONE! Im pretty excited about it.

You can find it here. Its all laid out great. She has all the printables you need there free.

I am a goofball and HAVE to have things look the way I like. (And I just don’t like chevrons.) So I had to make my own covers for the divers.

It’s really light and hard to see, but there is a flower sketched up over the words.

One thing I added was this sheet that really helped me last time I was the bill lady. It lets you see all your items at once, with the phone numbers and due date.

And even thought she has calendar pages for all the months, personally I like to have a non-specific-month calendar sheet where I can just see what day things are due generally, to give me a quick visual. (I made that thing years ago -- no link. Sorry)

And for now I am keeping this all in a basket in my eating area. Along with some notes, evelopes and stamps. And my camera fits in there too -- nice so I can quick grab for the girls.

So I’m feeling a lot less blind, and a lot more firmly grounded on “normal” stuff. (The stuff I’d totally ignore if I could -- so I could stare at clouds and paint colors, and clothes, while I drink coffee.)

It always helps me to make practicality pretty.

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