Monthly Archives: January 2011

Organizing Principle #3.

Here it is…. the principle that will round out the basics you need to start getting things organized in your home. What a great way to stat out the week right? Okay here it is:

Organizing Principle #3: “Keep it Simple.” That’s it, don’t try to organize your whole home at once, only one room at a time. Do not try to tackle more than one organizing project at a time. Along those “simple” lines, as you are tackling that one project, stay focused on the single task at hand. Example: if you are clearing out a room, stay focused on getting it cleared out (don’t sit and reminisce over fond memories you are finding as you sort, really not the time!) and give yourself a time to start and a time to finish (this can help you stay focused). Although it seems this one could go without saying, I have come to realize that it is important to clarify this principle early in the stages of organizing, otherwise you may become too easily distracted with the grandiose plans you have for getting your home in order. So, “Keep it simple,” you can make a list of rooms you want to organize, but don’t start them all at once, only one at a time. Make a simple prioritized list with the most important room to get organized at the top and so on (my opinion: start with the kitchen).

Later this week I will be posting the steps I follow in getting rooms/areas organized (so you can see how simple it can be when you stay focused on one step at a time) but in honor of the very clear message of this last principle that is all I am going to say about this one. Hope this gives you a little sigh of relief from the possible freaking out you may have experienced over Principles #1 and #2 this weekend! Keeping it Simple, one step at a time really does make the first two principles much (or at least a little) less daunting, yes?

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Organizing Principle #2.

Happy Saturday everyone! :) And now for organizing principle #2, this principle enables principle #1 to happen more and more often as you slowly but surely conquer this second principle, I know now you’re all excited and anxious to hear it right!?!?! Ok here it is:

One of our "designated places" for things in our home.

Organizing Principle #2: “Designate a place for everythingin your home. For some further inspiration I included a picture of one of the ways I have made a place for everything (no matter how small or insignificant the item may seem) in our small space: the top section is for remotes, middle section for my husbands Bible, ipod, and moleskin (all of which he uses early each morning for his devotion time), and the third section became our magazine holder (as you can see I’m a fan of “Better Homes and Gardens”). Sounds so simple on paper (or on a web page I guess, hah!) and in pictures, I know so I’m warning you….stop thinking about this principle to in depth or you will get overwhelmed! This principle will be better achieved once Organizing tip #3 is applied, see how they all work together so beautifully! :)

In the meantime…..homework for today (since it is Saturday): just glance around your home and note how many tings do not have an actual designated space in your home…shocking isn’t it!? Now take some time to write down some of those poor floating items in your home (examples: mail, keys, wallet, phone, purse, clothes, baby blankets, kitchen towels, sheets…yes the list could get very long) on a simple list (helpful hint: you can keep it limited to the top ten items you would like to get in a proper place first, this could make it more of an attainable goal for now). Then think of items you have already in your home (bowls, vases, baskets, etc.) that you could use to provide a designated space for these ten items (maybe keys, phone, wallet can all be combined into the same designated place). The important thing is not that each item has its own place but simply the fact that every item does indeed have a place that it belongs so when it comes time to “do it now” you can more easily follow through, knowing where to put that item you just picked up to put away, make sense? Hope this helps…the final principle is coming tomorrow to round out any confusion that may still be lurking. Keep at it people you are doing great!!!

**Quick important sidenote I wanted to point out, we all know there will be times when these organizing principles cannot be lived out practically and perfectly every single second of everyday. As we all know there are days like this (click here to read more about it) when unexpected mommy duties arise and other things are forced to be put on hold. I am not saying in any way that cleaning and organizing your home is to become priority over taking care of, playing with, and enjoying your kids, husband and family time as a whole. I am pointing out these principles though because once these are put into practice I do believe (and see proof of it in my own home now) that you will be shocked at how much more you are able to get done in your day (including taking time to rest in your day).

These principles are aimed at helping you get to a point where you can run things more effectively and efficiently in your home, giving you more time to thoroughly cherish and enjoy the family moments and memories being made in your home daily.

Organizing Principle #3 coming on Monday (taking Sunday off :))….

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Organizing Principle #1.

Ok! Sounds like a lot of you are planning on tackling the first organizing tip I posted on Wednesday, that is so fabulous!!! Glad it was helpful and I really do hope you stick to it! As you work on sticking to it I thought I should back up real quick and talk through, what I believe are the Top 3 Organizing Tips, which will then apply to all future organizing tips. Here is the first, its a good one so listen up everyone…..this is very important:

Organizing Principle #1: “Do It Now” when it comes to putting things away in your home. Now know that as your house gets more and more organized this motto will become easier and easier to do.  Once everything in your home has its designated place it will be easier to put things away right away instead of putting it off again and again. But do not put this one off it is an important habit to form now if you want to follow through with the organization of your home.

Quick Disclaimer: Super sorry if from this point on this tip becomes an annoyance in the back of your mind as you go about your day….but in the long run you’ll be happy when you do it now, so I’m really not to sorry. :) In fact, I just had this principle annoying me as I didn’t feel like putting in a long-overdue load of cloth diapers just yesterday morning…but I followed through and in the end, it was so wonderful to have that done!

Oh and just for fun I thought I’d throw out a few examples of things we like to not “do now” but should: make the bed even though you know its just going to have to be made again tomorrow, clean the dishes now even though you’ll be doing another sink load in about two hours, put your clothes away now before you go to bed it’ll make it much nicer in the morning not having those clothes lying on the floor. In case any of you were wondering if you already go by this “do it now” motto or not.

One last thing….next week I am planning on posting some points for making a place to put all that clutter you all were saying ends up landing on your kitchen table! It seemed to be a popular problem for lots of you…its time to do something about that! We don’t want all that clutter you are taking off your kitchen table now (right??) just ending up on the floor or some random place in your home (caught you red-handed people!)! Help is soon on its way!

Organizing Principle #2 coming tomorrow…….

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Emma’s New Hat.

To give you all time to get used to clearing off your kitchen table every night (I know, so kind of me right?:)) I thought today I would post some pictures that will make you all smile, I’m sure of it!

Emma got a new hat from Grammy last week… handmade by Alysha Tarr (another young mom at Grammy’s church). Emma just loves her new hat…almost as much as mommy does! Alysha asked for a few pics of Emma wearing the hat so she can possibly use them to spread word about her new Etsy shop. So Emma and I had a fun little photoshoot at home yesterday morning hehehe! Here are some of my favorites from my oh so professional shots! Hope you enjoy the pics, isn’t she a cutie pie??? :)

You can check out Alysha’s new Etsy shop here: http://www.etsy.com/shop/TheSunshineStitch.

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The Day a Stinky Diaper Took Over Our Home.

Most days when Eric gets home I like to have the T.V off, music playing, dinner cooking and the table set. Not because Eric requires it but because I like making our home a fun and restful place for him to look forward to coming home to each day. Last Thursday however, Eric came home to something much different…..

You see, my mom and grandparents had come out to have lunch with Eric, Emma and I earlier that day and we had a great time! Now, this is an important first part of the story because the fact that we went out meant Emma was wearing a regular diaper, not a cloth diaper as she usually does at home (yes I do cloth diapers, I know everyone has their opinion about that, but it definitely saves us money, so I do them when at home). So now later that afternoon back at home, Emma, in her regular diaper was sitting and playing on the floor and was soon very obviously working hard on making a stinky diaper (you know the funny little pushing noises the babies make for their stinky diapers, very funny). Anyway, I let Emma continue on her hard work while I put some of her toys away before we would then go and get the diaper changed. Within a couple minutes I proceeded to pick up a toy that was behind Emma and then I saw the full extent of Emma’s hard work. Yes I saw the hard work, meaning it had come out of the diaper and overflowed onto our nice white carpet…..oh dear. Before getting to the big clean up job I knew I had ahead of me I took a second to send Eric a picture of our daughters creation, we like to laugh at our little girl. :) I had about an hour until Eric was gonna be home…so after a total change of clothes for Emma (and many many baby wipes later), a change of clothes for me (yep it got on my jeans), a load of laundry now in the washer, putting Emma down for her nap and a very intense cleaning of a certain part of our carpet…Eric still came home to the stinky diaper being right by the front door, the T.V on the Food Network and no signs of dinner being prepared anytime soon. But we just laughed.

Having a baby has definitely changed our lives…but even days when stinky diapers take over we are still oh so thankful for the joy, good memories and laughter Emma Grace has added to our home. Just a nice reminder that no matter how organized I may feel my home is, there are some things that will always catch me off guard in being a mom, but it is the greatest job in the world and I wouldn’t trade it for anything!

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A Very Simple Organizing Tip.

Okay we are gonna start super simple with these organizing tips. If things were to get to complex to fast I know more than half of you won’t even have the courage to start practicing any of these simple steps to being organized. So those of you who already do this tip daily, good job, you’re on your way already, see your more organized than you thought! But for those of you who don’t practice this yet, get to it, its an easy one, so start tonight, no excuses!

The simple centerpiece on our kitchen table.

Now I always thought this “tip” was a given, however, I have learned from helping people organize that things I assume are second nature to everyone, quite often are not. No big deal…help is on the way! Ok so here it comes for all you wanting to get organized, big breath……

Tip for today: Have your kitchen table cleared off completely every night before you go to bed.

(Helpful hint: Having a small centerpiece in the middle of your table is sometimes good motivation to keep your table clear, it’ll look nicer when it is the only thing on the table when you wake up in the morning. Keep the centerpiece simple though, ours is pictured here, nice and simple and easy to remove for mealtime.)

That’s it, sounds ridiculous to some I know, seems to simple. But like I said we have to start off simple if there is any hope of accomplishing further organization for your home! So thats it for now, got it? Tell me if you accomplish this tip (assuming someone is reading this) and then I’ll be convinced we are ready to move on to the next step, don’t worry we’ll move nice and slow!

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Why “Simple Joys of Home”?

I LOVE my everyday job. Taking care of my husband, our baby girl and keeping our home in order, making it a restful place for our family to enjoy together each day. So…

“Simple” because I like keeping things simple. I do openly admit that I am a tad bit obsessed with organizing! With that obsession comes the natural instinct to keep things simple. You have to know what you have and where it goes when you want to stay organized, so if you have to many things, it gets to complicated and the chaos and clutter quickly overwhelm your home. That is why I like to keep things simple. I get questions from people about getting things organized in their own home SO…through this blog I hope to share some great practical tips for organizing so you can start enjoying your home too. That why I chose to include “simple” in my blog title.

“Joys” because I get such joy out of taking care of our home and fulfilling my role as Eric’s wife and Emma’s mom. I also love the word “joy” because it so properly sums up what I have in Christ and why I can and do enjoy my role at home. He gives purpose and meaning to all I do and that is my reason for finding joy in every single task I do. I hope this joy will spill out onto this blog and encourage you as you read it.  All that to say, “joy” was a necessary word to include in my blog title.

“Home” because well by now you can clearly see that I love our little home. Our little family of three that lives in our home, the organization that I get to bring to our home, the joy that Christ gives our home, the memories made in our home and yes even the laundry, dishes, vacuuming and dusting I get to do in our home. So, I can’t wait to give you little insights into our day to day life in our home through funny stories and pictures. Need I say more about why “home” is also included in my blog title?

Anyway….I know its not necessary to explain why you title your blog what you do. But I just love all three things so much that I thought maybe you’d enjoy getting to know me more through these three words for now. Can’t wait to start sharing some serious tips and tricks for organizing on this blog and some fun stories from our little family of three! ..Don’t worry I’ll keep it simple! :)

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