Archive for Home Management

Small Goals Lead To Big Goals

Baker’s Rack – After

We will be moving this summer and I’ve started working on decluttering before packing. I haven’t gotten very far. You can see some of my progress in this post or by joining my Facebook group, Finally Free Decluttering Support.

My decluttering efforts have been kind of haphazard and I decided that I needed a more systematic way of going about things. So I was figured out a general timeline. We want to be in the new house in June or July. That means I have to be ready to get work done on our current house starting in May (we’re moving before this house sells).

Then I listed all of the areas I need to work on: laundry room, kitchen, living room/dining room, master bath, master bedroom, bedroom 2, bedroom 3, bedroom 4, bathroom 2, run-in, front shed, back shed (has 2 stalls, guinea pigs, and storage), inside yard (i.e. where the chickens, ducks, Bubba, and Marshmallow are), chicken coop, and the front porch. That’s a long list! And I need it all done by May?!

First I thought, “OMG! How am I ever going to get this done?” Then I realized I needed a plan, a schedule. So I counted months–4 months to finish everything, and broke it down.

I need to have the heat pump and kitchen sink repaired so I need to have someone in to work in the main area of the house. I also need to get an estimate on replacing the windows in those rooms as well as replacing at least the bottom kitchen cabinets and the counter. That puts those areas first. So the kitchen and living room/dining room combo need to be finished in February. I also put the front porch in February because I have some bags of feed inside the dining room that I want to move into feed cans on the covered front porch.

Why is the feed inside? Glad you asked! Have you ever gone to a petting zoo and tried to walk through a bunch of goats carrying food in your hands? Yeah, it was like that every time I went to the back of the run-in to get feed out because they knew it was coming from back there. I would open the gate to get into the back storage part and 13 goats would be at my back trying to get in with me. So it’s inside the house and I now deliver the main herds’ portion in a bucket sealed with a gamma lid. I set it up so that I can feed the bucks through the fence and Bubba and Marshmallow got their own feeding station as well (pics coming soon!). So I can carry the sealed bucket out to the main herd, set it down, and get their feed pans ready while they all stand around the bucket sniffing to see if they can get in. Good times!

Back to the schedule! The master bedroom and master bathroom are planned for the end of February/beginning of March, followed immediately by the second bathroom. I want to get an estimate on replacing the bathroom cabinets, counters, and sinks. The other bedrooms fall in line after these rooms, with bedroom 2 scheduled for March. The inside yard is also scheduled for March so that I can hopefully stop the weeds and reseed the inside yard. I need to have the birds, Bubba, and Marshmallow doing something else by this time.

April gets us to bedrooms 3 and 4, laundry room, both sheds, the run-in, and the chicken coop will be last going into May.

It is a TIGHT schedule, and I am almost panicking even thinking about it! I hope we will be decluttered enough by April that I can have the windows, counters, and cabinets all replaced in April. I want that done so that I can fix any marks/holes in the walls and repaint in May. I hope to be able to get this house on the market as soon as we get out!

I think the most difficult thing about sticking to this schedule will be my energy level. I have fibromyalgia and pretty much wake up exhausted. I’m usually ready for a nap by about 10 AM. (Wish I could LOL here, but I don’t have the energy, so…)

Have you done a massive decluttering before? Tell me about it in the comments!

P.S. If you have any interest in taking better photos, you can take this free photography strengths assessment at:

I plan on taking this quiz after work today, because I need help!

Start The Week Right With Set It Up Sunday

Everyone is busy these days. Parents have full schedules, the kids have full schedules. One of the methods I’ve found that help me is to use Sunday evening for some self-care (to be covered in other posts) and “set it up!”

We homeschool and I find that Kaida can be more autonomous if she’s given an assignment sheet to check off. Some of her work requires more direct help from me (e.g. starting a new chapter in math, checking writing assignments), but some of it she can do a lot of on her own (e.g. math practice, spelling workbook, history reading and questions). I write out all of the assignments in the different subjects on Sunday evening. She goes through each day and checks off the ones she did.

One thing I’ve learned–do it in pencil! If math takes too long one day and we need to bump science over due to time constraints, it’s so much easier to be able to erase than have to scratch it out or look for the whiteout tape. This may seem obvious, but I like writing with pens more than pencils because it’s easier to see so I didn’t start off using pencil.

Another thing I’m starting to do is prepping all of my beans at one time. It’s a new thing for me so I’m still working out the details. For starters, I’m soaking each day’s beans in its own jar. I put one cup of rinsed and sorted beans in each jar, and filled each up to the curve with water and a generous pinch of baking soda. The baking soda is to help soften the beans.

I’ll probably use the crock pot to do at least Monday’s beans, but I’m working my way up to cooking them all at one time in the pressure cooker, each in their individual jar. I’m a little nervous about it because I haven’t pressure-canned beans (or really anything else) so I’m hoping I don’t mess it up. I know they don’t have to cook for nearly as long as it takes to can them–only about 7 minutes (depending on the type of bean) versus about 1.5 hours. I’m just scared since it’s new to me.

The other thing I’ve started doing is starting the laundry cycle on Sunday. Each day of the week is assigned a particular group of laundry. Sunday is darks/jeans, Monday is lights/shirts, etc. So the same group becomes ready for a load usually close to its assigned day, rather than just waiting for a giant pile and then dealing with it.

How do you get ready for the week ahead? Let’s talk about it in the comments!

P.S. The Self-Improvement Giveaway 11 is still going on. Sign up today for hundreds of free resources!

Small Kitchen Idea

I had the kitchen table set up so that we could get to all of the chairs all the time. That meant that there was plenty of space to get to the windows, usually a good thing. However, not so good when you have multiple noses and multiple paws trying to look out the windows. Enter the solution.


Now the dogs can’t get to the two front windows. The curtains are cleaner from not being messed with, and there’s much more space in the kitchen. Easy enough to pull the table out when we have guests and unnecessary when we don’t. Plus, putting the fruit on the table freed up the baker’s rack for starting sprouts and seeds.


How do you keep the dogs off the curtains?

Charging Counter Cleaned Up

I have got to remember to take before pictures! Anywho, I finally got one counter cleaned off and organized. The only thing I need for it is a power strip to plug the chargers into.


Clean (yes, that’s the original wallpaper; paint coming later).


Organized. Now to just keep it that way…

What have you done today to make your world a little better?

Are You Up For A Challenge?

Woman Construction 2

I’ve decided to add some accountability for myself by conducting several challenges. I’m going to do the following:

WOW! Apparently, I want to be insanely busy for a while…

I plan to do a separate post for each challenge, making note of progress and setbacks in each category, and interlinking the posts within each category. I will include a calendar as soon as I figure out how to add it!

Ready? Challenges begin 12/1/2014!