Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Housework ADD

Do you suffer from housework ADD?  No, it is not in any of the medical journals and maybe it is not recognized as a real affliction ... but I assure you that it is.  Symptoms may include:
  • working all day on housework, but it still looks the same as it did when you started
  • a string of unfinished tasks caused by getting distracted by other things that need to be done
  • starting new tasks before finishing the current task
I suffer from housework ADD.  Rejoice...there is hope for a clean house!  Ok, so my house may not be the "poster home" for this idea, but it is a work in progress!  By combining several tips from magazines, books, blogs, etc I have found a "treatment plan" that works for me.  Who knows...maybe it will work for you too!
Some of the tips/ideas I know specifically where I got the idea from, those will be notated so you can reference them, however, some of them are ideas that I thought of...maybe someone already has them listed in their blog, book, etc but I did not take them from there.  Make sense?
  • You can do anything for 15 minutes!  This is one of my favorites!  It takes away some of the overwhelming factor.  When I feel like, "Ugh!  I don't want to do xyz!", I just tell myself, "It's only 15 minutes."  Get a timer, set it for 15 minutes and GO!  I have found that when i do this I get more done in those 15 minutes because I find myself racing against the clock and I am focused on the task at hand.  (taken from The Flylady)
  • Start at the far corner of the room and work your way out.  Ok, this sounds weird but it really makes a difference for me.  Instead of cleaning random places all over the room start at the far corner and do a sweep all of the way through the room.  I can't really explain why this works, but it does!
  • Use a laundry basket or storage bin to throw in all of the items that do not belong in that room and a plastic bag for trash.  If you pick up an item that doesn't belong in the room that you are cleaning and you take it to another part of the house to put it away or go to throw away a piece of trash...what is going to happen?  You are going to walk past something else that needs to be done.  [Example:  Yesterday, while cleaning my living room, I found something that needed to be thrown away.  I walked into the kitchen to throw it away and saw a plate on the counter that had not been scraped in the trash.  What do you think happened?  I grabbed the plate and all of the sudden I was no longer cleaning the living room...I was doing dishes!  Luckily I caught myself and quickly got back to my original task.]  When you finish cleaning in that room, take the bag to the trash and put away the items in the basket. 
  • Work from top to bottom.  This is a basic idea that I learned when I was a kid.  Start with the tops of shelves, cabinets, etc and end with the floor.  This is another thing that I can't really explain, but it really works for me.  I guess it is the fact that I can an action plan and can progress in a specific order.  It eliminates the "what do I do next" feeling that can make tasks feel overwhelming.
  • Dust after you de-clutter.  This in kind of a gimme, but sometimes the obvious is the easiest to miss.  Plain and simple, it is easier to dust when you have less to dust around.
  • Vacuum last.  Another obvious one.  If you vacuum before you finish you may end up with more on the floor to vacuum up.  This is just a waste of time.
  • Start with the easy stuff!  Do the tasks that are the quickest and easiest to complete first!  This will help you feel like you have actually accomplished something and encourage you to keep going!  This is going to sound a bit corny, but I actually modified a principal from my finance class for this one.  In the class it says to pay off your small debt first, for the same reason that I listed above.  I thought, "Wow!  That can apply to several aspects of life, not just money!"  (modified from Financial Peace University) 
So maybe none of these ideas are new, but having them together in one place could be helpful.  There are lots of other wonderful tips out there and I'm sure that I will add them as time goes by.  If you have a great one...share it with me!  My family would appreciate it :)

Monday, April 25, 2011

Highlights from Easter 2011!

Helping peel eggs for deviled eggs! At least I think they used to be eggs!

She starting walking A LOT on Easter!

Dying eggs!

I see you!

Easter morning! Some are more interested in the basket than the camera!

Egg hunting!

So happy!

She loves her Baby Alive!

Her very first Easter egg!

She loved playing with the eggs!

Trying to get two kids to pose is nearly impossible!

Checking out her goodies!

Playing with her cousin