Note. This was originally going to be Feral food Friday. But my mum reminded me my bin is emptied Thursday which would mean rotting food in my bin for a whole week! And since mum wisdom is as good in my books as gran wisdom - I thought I better look for a new day!
Would you eat it Wednesday? When was the last time you checked your fridge? Take a moment. Throw the feral foods. Move the leftovers you need to eat soon to the front of the shelf. Give your fridge a wipedown and tidy your pantry quickly.
I was talking this afternoon to Miss E's prep teacher.
We are blessed with the sort of teacher that you dream of getting for your child. She is well read. She is enthusiastic. She is talented. She acts crazy at times.
Her goal for prep is to get our children to be confident in themselves, love school and learn to love to learn. That's it.
That said - I know the curriculum has been expanded well beyond the "normal" prep curriculum, and I love that too.
Today we were talking. We were talking about my girl. And the perfectionist in her. For example, every day in class they do "cross pattern walking" and other activites. These are specially designed to get the left and right side of the brain to cross over (or something like that anyway)
To begin with Miss E didn't want to do it, because she didn't know how. Then she tried it but gave up, because she didn't do it right. She told me she couldn't do it. She told me the teachers said she was doing it wrong. (um - don't think so honey - they were just helping - but you are so like me and I probably would have said that too)
The perfectionist in her stops my girl trying new things. If she can't do it already, or is worried she will fail, she just refuses to try.
And so our conversation went. Till I mentioned this perfectionism. And the teacher said "we have to knock that out of her". And I agreed.
And here is where the lesson lies. She said "the way we teach children nowdays, and how we get them to learn, is we need them to take risks. They have to try things. And fail. And in doing so they stretch themselves beyond what they thought they could do."
And I've thought about that all night. What do you not do, because you might fail. Is your house untidy, because "I'm just too busy. I don't have time". And because you worry you might start and be right back where you started.
Is there something you always wanted to do, but were too scared to try.
We need to take risks. That is how we learn. We might not always succeed. But if we try with all our heart there is a lesson, even in the failing.
Now that some of my systems and ideas are starting to become habit, and we have been living with some of the changes for a little while, I intend to review some of my older posts to let you know what has been working, what we are changing, and what has gone by the wayside.
A month ago I reviewed "Spring Clean all Year Round", a sweet little cleaning system that helps you spread out those ongoing cleaning tasks throughout the year.
My bathroom is tiny. And ugly. And old. You never see pics of it! There is a reason!
Paul and I are thinking of renovations later in the year - but we need to get the kitchen done, then the office first I think
One thing that DOES work in our bathroom is this. As there is pretty much no storage I use a shoe organiser on the back of the door. Each pocket has a purpose (eg hair clips, make up, thermometer, etc.
It is easy to use. You can see what is there at a glance and it stores a heap. But it also puts limits too -if the pocket is full then you need to rethink what you are storing.
Maybe not the most elegant solution, but it works for me.
I've been asked a few times - why Ikea for our kitchen?
I thought I'd blog just a little tonight about our experiences.
For us it was a combination of quality, price, and function.
#1 - We loved the options Ikea gave us. Not only in the cupboards and veneers, but in the little storage ideas and solutions that make Ikea unique. I wanted a really functional kitchen. Ikea could help us achieve that.
#2 - The quality. Compared to other kitchens in the price range we were looking at, Ikea was much better quality. It was the little things that mattered - things like dampeners on the drawers so they can't be slammed. I was very happy with the quality.
#3 - The Ikea Kitchen planner software. Once I figured this out, this was key to getting what I wanted. It let me play and change things. And I didn't feel so overwhelmed.
#4 - My Father in Law is a builder. This meant I could relax in knowing that any little problems we came into with installation would be fixed well.
#5 - The ability to upgrade components that mattered. Things like the pull out shelves for the pantry. And the ability to pay extra for the custom made bench tops. I believe you need to buy decent benches - they are the workhorse of your kitchen.
#6 - The price. Our cupboard veneer was discontinued. This meant we got these at 65% off retail. Which meant I could put more money into things like the cupboard upgrades that I wanted. And price DOES matter.
Overall, I am very very very happy. A few things were a problem, like a dented sink and living so far away. But to be fair, once we made them aware of the problem Ikea were EXCELLENT and compensated us for our time.
Would I do it without Gene (the Father in law builder) - probably not. Although I do think we *could* do it. But it would take a lot more time. And a lot of googling and youtubing to work things out. And probably hiring a handy man to help with some bits. And no one could do a job as good as Gene.
Would I go ikea again? I guess that depends how it wears. SO far, that is a yes. Time will tell...
Family Room - rubbish gone - folding done - toys, glasses etc all returned to right rooms - one load washing put away - tv cabinet tidied - vaccuuming done - magazines thrown away - load laundry put on
*still to do - ironing*
Main Bedroom -Bed tidied (was made - just tidied) -bedside table cleared of books -dirty laundry taken to clothes basket -clean laundry put away -Miss E's books returned to her room -beads put away -space made for my project life kit to live -dusted -vacuumed *still to do - Paul to tidy his bedside table, old chest of drawers to be taken to shed*
Miss E's Room
After! -bed made -toys picked up -library books out to return -toy unit tidied -toys in cupboard tidied -3 toys removed for donation -washing put away -winter clothes sorted and clothes removed for donation -vacuuming done
Bathroom * clean back of door storage pockets and reorganise (pics to come) * clear basin of clutter * new towels * wipe and clean basin and mirror * empty bath of toys - declutter bath toys
also * change sheets on spare bed * load of laundry *** to do - clean shower and bathtub**
The only way to organise clutter is to get rid of it.
These are my favourite tool to do that.
I was using garbage bags, but they tore, fell over, and basically annoyed me. Plus they are B.A.D. for the environment.
These are a great solution. Pop up laundry baskets. They are light. They fold down to nothing to store easily. Plus - you can play Australia's national sport, and take potshots at the bin for a bit more entertainment.
The ones I use are from flylady. But you can get cheap pop up laundry baskets at your nearest "$2 shop", or in the laundry or toy departments of big W, Kmart etc.
The one that the moment someone starts singing it you will not get it out of your brain all day?
The one that burns itself on your brain? And drives you slightly insane?
You know -
This is a song that never ends ... It goes on and on my friend ....
Well - I've come to realise - that this is sort of what our decluttering journey is like. There is no end. It does go on and on. I just hope it's not quite as irritating as that song. There will always be a need to keep going. Maybe not as intensely - but we will outgrow things our children will change things wear out things break down our interests change we get tired and don't keep our systems up as well as we should ...
and sometimes we see a better way.
Case in point. Remember that little nook in my garage that I so nicely organised my Christmas decorations and party supplies into?
This one here? http://findingthecalminthechaos.blogspot.com/2010/01/christmas-storage.html
Well - after our kitchen renovations and all the stuff stored in our garage it kinda looked like this.
and if you removed that shopping trolley from the front that is blocking the view it was kinda like this
all those things i had to move in a hurry because *someone* wanted that space now!
Part of the clutter was my basket of fabrics. I will deal with that later. That cupboard needs cleaning first.
and now - after 20 min - it looks like this!
Top shelf is our luggage. Then three shelves of containers that had previously "organised" our clutter.
Just goes to prove it again. You cannot organise clutter.
Once everything is done and I know I can't use these elsewhere I will freecycle them. But for now they stay
This is my journey! I am a 38 year old aussie mum of two beautiful little girls!
I am a part time nurse just finding my feet in acute care, and I love my family with all my heart and then some.
I am passionate about our family. I love to preserve memories and make our life together FUN!
Journey with me as I learn. Maybe we can share some tips along the way