Thursday, January 31, 2013

Resolutions Continue...

Another day off for bad weather.  Living in a rural area where flooding can be an issue allowed me to have another day off today.  I bundled Babycakes up and took her to "school" (read: daycare) so I could get a few things done around the house.  So far I have finished a novel I was reading, paid some bills, and caught up on my blog reading.  I still have a mess of stuff to do but it will get done.  On to the point of this post...

I have been working on decluttering my home during the month of January.  While I haven't made as much progress as I anticipated, I need to focus on what I have accomplished.  So here it goes...

The upper cabinet beside my stove has been a disaster up to this point.  So I brought home some baskets that I had in my classroom that were not being used so I could organize my cabinet a little better.  This is what I came up with...
 The top basket is for my baking supplies, the middle basket (shown below) is for my hot teas and the bottom basket is for things I use on a fairly regular basis when I am cooking.

While not a great picture, this is where I decided to put all of my hot tea accoutrements for easy access.  While I consider myself more of a coffee drinker than a tea drinker, I better start using some of this tea so I can free up that shelf!  (Don't worry, we have an entire cabinet devoted to coffee)

I also used some of my decluttering mojo to work on my nightstand.  Since I spend my quiet time before bed reading, sewing,etc, my nightstand has a tendency to get out of control.  But here it is after a little clean-up.

My remotes for the tv and DVD player (love me some Golden Girls!), pens, lip balm, tissues, and foot cream are all easily accessible. 

Truth be told, I forgot about the foot cream and discovered it when I cleaned all the crap out of this drawer.  So I went ahead and put a date on it.  If it isn't used up in 6 months it goes.  I even put a date on the bottle to remind myself!

I also decided to clear of the top of it while I was in a decluttering mode...

I know it looks cluttered, but these are my night time must haves - ice water, glasses (so I can see aforementioned Golden Girls), hand cream, Bible, alarm clock, current novel.

And just because I miss her, here are a couple of recent pics of Babycakes...

Both of her Grandpas and her Daddy all served in the Air Force.  This is her late Grandpa Gene's toboggan.  She had a blast wearing it around the house last week!

And her she is with her entire family of bears (Mr. Bear, Mr. Bear 2.0, and Mrs. Bear)

Hoping all of you are enjoying some decluttering/resolution bliss!


Monday, January 28, 2013

Resolution Update

Whew!  Hard to believe the weekend has come and gone and it's Monday again.  We have a 2 hour delay due to some icy conditions so I have a little extra time this morning to update you all on my resolution project progress.
While my goal was declutter every single day, I'm not sure that was a realistic goal.  With the Hubs in class on Wednesday nights, the excessive amount of illnesses we've battled this Fall/Winter, and life in general I feel that was a little ambitious on my part.  But I haven't given up.  I keep plugging along getting rid of excess as I go.
This weekend I decided that my planner was not working for me.  While I do use Google calendar, I still need a paper planner to get me through everyday life.  When I went to Staples on Saturday to get a refill for my Franklin Covey planner I started talking to the cashier about trying to get myself more organized.  She shared with me that she uses the ARC system.  I immediately went to check it out.  After looking over their products and seeing what I had purchased for my FC planner, I made a decision to give the ARC system a try.  I was able to put together an entire system for less than the refill items I had purchased for my FC system! 
Without further adieu,  I give you my updated planner...

I thought about getting something a little more "fun" than brown, but felt this looked a little more professional.

 I love the front pocket that I can tuck notes/documents into, I just hope it doesn't get out of control!

 I love, love, love that it has dividers so I can organize my paper life a little better.  I think I'm going to change a couple of the labels though.

I sub-divided my "to do" list into work and home in order to make things a little more manageable.

In the front pocked I tucked a couple of hair cut ideas.  In this push to simplify I'm thinking shorter hair might make things a little more manageable.

Dissertation notes...

My grand plan to update our kitchen.  I did finally finish scrubbing that awful floor last night. Yay!!!

And also tucked in the pocket is the beginnings of a Valentine's Day gift idea for the Hubs that I saw on Pinterest.  (Shh!  Don't tell him!) Cleo had to make sure she got in the picture too!  See her cute little paws?

 I have other projects I have worked on and completed.  I will post those later.  But for now, I need to see if I got a snow day!

Hope everyone has a fantastic week!

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Snow Day!

Okay, not really.  But I REALLY want one!  We were teased with the possibility of snow near the end of the week but the storm traveled too far south. It was a very sad day for me. :-( 

One of the big reasons I am pulling for a snow day is because I won a book from one of my favorite blogs and I need some time to read it!  Binkertation is a kindred spirit - working mama also on the journey to complete her dissertation.  She has the cutest little ones - you should check out her blog if you get a chance.

Anyway, back to the snow day.  We did actually have some snow back around Christmas and I wanted to share come pictures with you.  The Hubs took these with my cell phone and then I headed over to PicMonkey to edit my pictures.  I just learned about this site and am in love.  It's free (one of my favorite words) but I might cough up the $33 for a membership because it's that cool!
Anyway, back to the pictures.  Babycakes was not really a fan of the snow. She really just tolerated it long enough for me to get these pictures. 

This one was taken right before we headed inside.  You can tell by the look on her face she is done with being outside in the snow. :-)  

I love this one!  She actually looks like she's smiling a little bit.

It's so hard to believe that this time last year she wasn't even walking.  Just look at my girl now!

These will have to hold me over until our next snow.  Here's to snowy thoughts!

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Resolutions and Other Blather

What a week!  I can not wait until this weekend.  Three glorious days of freedom from work!  Don't get me wrong, I love my job, but some weeks make me want to throw in the towel and find another occupation.  This week has been one of them!

So, I've been doing pretty well keeping up with my resolutions so far.  The decluttering is going fairly well - I was able to take a box of things to the consignment shop yesterday and another to Goodwill.  

Recently,  I have been working on my photographs.  As a scrapbooker who has very little time to scrapbook these days (working full time, being a mama, beginning a dissertation...) my photos have been taking over my desk and my computer so I thought I would tackle these areas.  I love to take pictures and I'm (usually) pretty good about uploading them to my computer.  Then they stay there until the end of time apparently.  I keep thinking I will print them out and scrapbook them.  But I finally had to "get real" with myself - I'm not doing anything with those pictures on my computer. So I uploaded them to an online photo site (My Publisher) and have been spending at least 15 minutes each evening organizing them into a book so that I can order an actual book instead of having our treasured memories "trapped" in my laptop. This way everyone can enjoy them!

The floor project, on the other hand, has not been as successful.  I have lost my steam.  I am soooo close to finishing and I really need to suck it up and just scrub the floor. Maybe I can budget some money for some cute rugs to dress up that hideous floor.  I really do hate it.  

So there's my progress on my resolutions.  How have you been doing?

Saturday, January 12, 2013

The beginning of 2013...

2013 has started pretty rough here at Wilted Acres.  Babycakes started feeling puny right after New Year's.  So back to the pediatrician we went with our co-pay in hand.  Diagnosis? Bronchitis.  We caught it early he said...
After 24 hours on antibiotics this is what she looked like.

She didn't want to do anything except watch Elmo. All. Day. Long.  I mean the kid is an Elmo fanatic (as you can tell) but she didn't want to eat, drink, or play with her toys.  By Sunday she was worse so back to the pediatrician's office we went for their emergency hours.  While in the waiting room, she began coughing up blood.  I thought I was going to have a heart attack.  They moved us to the front of the line and we saw the doctor on call right away.  Apparently she had coughed so hard her throat was just raw - hence the blood.  My poor Babycakes! :-( 
Her diagnosis changed from bronchitis to bronchiolitis.  He kept her on the antibiotic but added a steroid to the medicine regiment.  Within hours she was feeling much better.  She was a sick little girl, I can tell you that!
Now that she is feeling better we were able to go on an outing today.  We LOVE our local library!  When the Children's Librarian asks how your child is when you run into her at Wal-Mart you know you are a regular patron.  Anyway, we were able to go visit our library today where Babycakes had a fabulous time!

In the Children's Area is this big tent structure where the kids can go to look at books.  Babycakes had never gone in before, but today was the day.  She LOVED it!

When she was finished destroying  reading the books, she was ready to move on to something else.  They have these magnetic letters that she normally eats so I won't let her play with them.  But today she played with them for a good 10 minutes by herself before she decided to taste them...

As a serious book hoarder lover, I am thrilled to see her enjoying the library.  I hope that I am able to instill a love of books, reading, and knowledge that will take her through life.

Thursday, January 3, 2013


With inspiration from Gretchen Rubin of The Happiness Project I decided I would embark on my own Happiness Project instead of New Year's resolutions.  The premise of my project is fairly simple.  Each month I have a "resolution" to work on.  Nothing too difficult, but things I feel will add to my overall happiness.

As a teacher, I have the opportunity to have 2 new years.  One in September and one in January.  One thing I have struggled with since school started in September is the massive amount of clutter I feel I am constantly surrounded by and the stress it adds to my life.  So I thought I would begin by reducing the stress clutter in my life. 

With a little help from Gretchen Rubin and the FlyLady, I have determined that I can do just about anything for 15 minutes a day.  So my Happiness Project resolution for January is to spend 15 minutes decluttering every day keeping only the things I need/use or that bring me joy or recall fond memories.  So this evening I worked on the bathroom closet.  I could not believe how much stuff was in that closet!  I didn't take any before pictures (although I should have) but I wanted to share the "after" because I am pretty darn proud of myself!

I love this closet because it is so deep and I can store a TON of stuff.  I also hate this closet because it is so deep and I can store a TON of stuff.  We keep the trashcan in the closet because Babycakes gets a kick out of opening and closing the lid and I think it's an absolutely disgusting thing to do.

And do you see that empty(ish) shelf?  No idea what I'm going to do with that but I am thrilled to have it available!

While not a resolution, I have decided to scrub my kitchen floor.  Since our house was built in the 1940s, and the kitchen is all original, we have the floor from hell.  There is no way to clean it other than to get down on my hands and knees with a brush and scrub it.  (Trust me, we have tried everything!)  Since I can do just about anything for 15 minutes, I have been setting a timer each night and, on my hands and knees, scrubbing the floor.

You can see in the picture below the difference in the floor.  The area in front of the stove is the area I am working towards. 

I am thinking that this may be the kind of floor that needs wax.  I have no idea how to wax a kitchen floor but if it saves me from getting on my hands and knees every week, I'll do it!

So what about you?  Any resolutions?