I am currently organizing my home. As a mother of 3 children, I understand your schedule. When you start, focus on one room that you'd feel great returning to, for some peace and quiet. I chose my bedroom. For about a week, I only did my bedroom. Now, it is a beautiful, white and lime green, peaceful-place, surrounded by my things. No kids toys, kids art work, kids laundry, kids smells, etc.(and let the kids know that they aren't to come in without permission).
Next, I got the kids to go through their toys and decide what is too little for them now. We made a donations box and I put those toys out of sight. The garage is a great place, until you recycle them. A great way to get your clothing dealt with is to keep a bin at the washer/dryer specifically with the clothes you'd like to give away. At end of season (or when the box is full) donate them.
Blankets/bedding can be put in the closet that's closest to the bed those sheets fit, instead of over-flowing the hall closet. Put all kitchen utensils into a box. As you use them and wash them, you'd put them into their proper drawer. After about a week, you'd see what's left in the box. Throw the remainder out (except special holiday utensils - which can be put with holiday plates/stuff). In the corner of my basement, I have a storage shelf specifically for "possible sale items" on e-bay.
When I get enough stuff there, I will list them and see what I can get for them. VHS movies are leaving today. We never watch them and if we rent movies, we get DVDs only. Lastly, the best way to de-clutter is to stop bringing stuff into the house, even if it is free or a great deal. Put your house on a diet, as they say. When you're exhausted, go sit in that first room you organized, it should keep you motivated! Good Luck!
There are several motivational CDs you can buy, such as Anthony Robbins. Simply play these while you are in the car or cleaning. I'd also recommend going to the library and borrowing books on this if you have time to read them.
The best tip is to get up 15 minutes earlier, and write up a preprinted 'to do' list of everything you need to do that day, the most important chores first.
As stated previously, everything has a place so put it there and only there. It could take awhile to declutter but once it is done stick with it. EVERYTHING has to go back to it's home, do not procrastinate or it will be clutter again. I even have all of my spices in alphabeticle order.
Flylady.com is the best website. The daily emails, encouragement, tips help so much--even 15 minutes a day! It works. Good luck.
Declutter, only deal with what you love!, if you haven't used it is 6 months, bless someone else with it! Trim down what your kids keep out, and find a way to hide the toys, and make it easy for them to pick up after themselves. I rotated my kids toys every six months, and they thought they had new things! Flylady is a great sight! the emails I don't read every day, I delete what I can't do, but the trick for me has been setting a timer for 15 minutes and doing something! Its' amazing what can be done in that 15 minutes time! the kids love helping and 15 minutes isn't long for them to pitch in either.
Throw away loose papers, cluttered areas need to be decluttered. I was a clutter queen! then I realized I was really drawn to uncluttered spaces, So I blessed other organizations with my clutter. Have a garage sale if you have enough stuff and want to mess with it. I made $600. off mine. IF you don't love something, why have it around? Take those first few baby steps.
Well, ABSOLUTELY NO ONE can top me for living in chaos! The ONE BIG THING that really helped me get my clutter under control & my life organized was a book called "The Messies Manual" by Sandra Felton. I read it back in the 1980s... Now they have updated the book & it's called: "The Messies Manual - The Procrastinator's Guide to Good Housekeeping" Used copies are around $3.99. It's not a boring read either. The book is on the funny side & is both funny & informative & quick to read with easy to follow ideas that have helped me in my life to this day!
Here's the URL for the newer book at Amazon.com:
http://www.amazon.com/New-Messies-M ... stinators-Housekeeping/dp/0800757262
Here's the URL for the original:
---> Those that have read it have given it a four & a half star rating at Amazon!
So many must feel the same way about the book as I do.
---> They even help people sponsor "Messies Anonymous" meetings for those who need a bit more of a kick in the butt to get going. Here's where to learn more:
I keep my house clean by cleaning one room per day. Been doing this for about 3 years. Works fine for me, hope it works for you.
Okay, You know all the right things to do because of all the great advice the other ladies gave you. Here is my advice to be motivated:
1. Invite your Pastor's wife over one day a week for Lunch or coffee.
2. Invite your child's Sunday School teacher over to your house another week.
3. Invite your child's school teacher or school principle over for dinner with your family some Friday evening.
4. Be a best friend to all of your friends that sell products through home parties, by hosting a party every Saturday or Sunday. Such as: Tupperware, Creative Memories, Pampered Chef, PartyLite, StampItUp, etc., you will have fun, you will help out a friend and you will get some free items for your home, on top of keeping you motivated to keep the house organized and clean.
If I know I am having company or am hosting a party; I'm always instantly motivated to clean the house.
Instead of one room at a time, try one topic at at time. For example: On Monday, carry a trash bag around the house and gather everything you can to throw away. On Tuesday, gather all the clothes that are somewhere other than in drawers or closets - spend the day washing, folding and putting away. On Wednesday, gather all of the dishes and food related stuff from around the house and wash and put away. Etc etc.
I guess some or most of my ideas come from flylady, too.
Also, I wanted to mention that with younger children, you can use pictures or drawings of their tasks if not able to read.... You can use photos on boxes to show the younger kids that stuffed animals belong in the stuffed animal box....
I set up a list of things my boys needed to do each day. We have just started it, but I find it amazing. Some things are near give-aways when it comes to checking things off.... like eat breakfast and put up your dish, get dressed, etc. The biggies for me are what I call a 10 minute Tidy Up and our Zone for the day.
The 10 minute Tidy Up is done using a timer. I decide what areas need the most attention and each boy does 10 minutes each (twice a day). I am careful to limit it to 10 minutes so that they don't get overly frustrated. We, also, consider input from the boys as to what area they may want to do for one of the 10 minute Tidy Up's and they do suggest reasonable jobs.
The second is our Zone. I have divided our home into six areas with Saturday being our day of rest. Sunday is yardwork, Monday is bedrooms and den, Tuesday's are bathrooms and hall, Wednesday is kitchen and trash, Thursday is Living and Dining rooms along with front hall and Friday is work/school room, errands and preparation for Sabbath. The Zone has developed into a 20 minute timer job. With three of us working together, one 20 minute job translates into 60 minutes of cleanup in that area. I, also, find that working together makes them more enthusiastic. They will work harder if they know it is just for a set amount of time. I can know that even if we don't finish the job, we will be back to it the very next week and we continue to see progress. I can see that over a month or so of catching up, 20 minutes might be too much for each zone!
Since I have made a checklist for each of the boys, they know exactly what to do. This eliminates arguing and fussing over what needs to be done. They do their work and THEN they can go outside to play with their friends when it is cooler in the FL evening. They only can argue with the paper if they feel that they must! <grin> Boy, can they move fast if their friends are waiting for them!!
Check out flylady.net. But if you subscribe to the emails, subscribe to the digest version so your inbox doesn't become as cluttered up as your house.
fly lady is a great site. but i foound i got so bogged down in all the emails i stopped it. i would get 5 or 7 emails per day. i couldnt keep up. now i am not working my full time jobs so i am slowly working towards having my house straight. tho i live alone i still struggle very much with organizing. i get very frustrated.
I agree to everyone that has posted to use FlyLady!!! It is a great system and my house and my habits have really really changed because of it. A shiny sink is truly contagious to the rest of the house.
Here's how I declutter, and I learned it from a book called "Get Your Act Together" (yucky title, but very funny book).
Three boxes. Go into one room, start on one part of a wall, work your way in a circle around the room.
In one box, things you'll throw away.
In the next box, things that belong somewhere else in your house.
In the third box, things you'll give away or put in a garage sale or otherwise move out of your house. If you're putting it into your pile for next garage sale, put a price on it, right then. Greatly reduces the stress of the garage sale day. Make the price a tad high and then as the sale day goes on you can cut the price.
Save any money found and any photos ***if nothing's written on the back, write something immediately, usually person and year.***
When you go into the next room the next day, you can bring along the box you started of things belonging in that room.
Please consider getting that book, it has a system for involving family members into a points game that has worked for a lot of families.
God bless you! sometimes if you set a kitchen timer and then organize only one drawer, you're ahead of where you were!
The FlyLady website is your best bet. This site has really helped me out with my house and my home business.
First, go to the dr and make sure you aren't suffering from depression. I've been thru this myself.
Then, get the kids involved. They love to have "chores" they can mark off or get a star by. Start small. Even little ones like to dust a room. If possible, box up part of the clutter--such as extra knick knacks and such that take longer to clean around.
Third, change your habits. If the mail pile is out of hand, then change how you handle the mail. As soon as you get it, toss the junk mail. Put magazines in the magazine basket, put the bills in the bill pile. That should leave very little mail.
When you pick up a room, set the timer for 15 or 30 minutes. Go full steam ahead for that amount of time, then stop or take a break. Give each person in the house their own laundry basket or box. As you clean, but their stuff in the basket and have them put their own items away. If they argue, tell them what will happen when they do. "After you put that away, we will have a bowl of icecream"
In a closet or garage, put a few boxes labeled for sell, donate, recycle...If its trash, toss it.
Try burning a clean smelling candle to motivate you. For me, its lemon-I guess because of all the lemon scented cleaners. Lemon makes me clean.
I know where you are coming from. I have a special needs child. I was talking my problems over with the dr and she suggested I had depression. I thought she was wrong, but tried the prescription she gave me. I then found she was right! I have more energy, sleep better and night and am more focused to stay on task. I don't give up as easily either.
Good luck and hang in there!!
Oh my goodness I checked out FlyLady and wow so much info. I am trying her today is my first day. My sink is shiny. This might work after all. Also my children are 8,5,3 and 2. Yeah I know! LOL...
Thank You and I said a small Prayer for those women who are gifted with this gift of organization and let them be doing what they are doing best. and for those of of us who needed that extra boost of energy to get through this organization process. :O)
Thanks A Million
(mommy8532 AT yahoo.com)
*from this experience I would like to do a book sometime* Just a thought, with being a person who always needs something to do-this would be it. (I know I need everyones permission to use the posts but leave names out, tell me what you think about this idea)
Again thanks a bunch.
I have to give a huge amen to EdieParks about FlyLady ( http://www.flylady.net/pages/WhyFly.asp ). JoJo's ideas are great, too. Go to the FlyLady site and read WhyFLY and Beginner BabySteps (on the left of the page). Also, they have an internet radio program every Thursday ( 11 am Pacific Time on this site http://www.worldtalkradio.com/ ). They (FlyLady and Leanne) often speak of children with ADHD needing structure and routines and this site will help you do that. God bless you and please give this a try. Believe me, I know how you feel!!!
I think the first step in becoming organized is to begin eliminating 'clutter'.
I don't know how old your children are, or if they can help at all. Perhaps you could begin by getting them involved in sorting through toys & games. Get some boxes/containers and sort like with like, or put names on the containers for each child. Try to get them to put items back into the containers when not using them. Donate any unused items and dump any broken items.
It is certainly a good idea to work one room at a time...even one drawer at a time...eventually you will get there!
Perhaps when the kids are in bed, you could pick ONE room and sort through it one drawer or cupboard at a time. Try not to get distracted by doing bits and pieces in different rooms, devote all your attention to finishing one room however long it takes.
I've had to learn to 'let go' of things I'd always meant to fix or sew...it never happened! It's not necessarily easy to stay organized but you eventually learn to tidy as you go and having items in set places makes it much easier to find things and saves time.
Try flylady.com . It is free too.
It changed me into a much more easy going person.
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