Thursday, 20 September 2012

Organisation Update - Week Two

UPDATE: I thought I posted this on Monday night, I must have been REALLY tired because I just found it in my drafts folder. Mumma brain strikes again!

Well the end of last week was so much BLAH... with little Frog unwell and the rest of us alternately exhausted and coming down with her bug as well.

I'd managed two days out of five for our first week of The Organised Housewife's 20 Day Challenge. I was a bit cross with myself, and with the universe for dumping everything on us the second we relaxed a bit.

Never mind, I thought, just pour a cup of tea and get on with the job.

This week I did, in spectacular fashion!

We may have gone slightly off the plan this weekend, but only because a new addition forced a total furniture reshuffle. The upside is that we have a lounge and three bedrooms that actually LOOK like they are lived in! Not just stark rooms with a bed/chairs.

This house is actually starting to look and feel like our home. Because we rent, and because we moved so often and had so little furniture we have spent the last five years looking like we were "camping" in whatever house we were in. 

Which reminded me... in October I will have known WonderMan for five years, that's when we met, and we will have been engaged for 4 years and 9 months which is probably getting on to be ridiculous but one day, one glorious day, we will get around to getting married. But not next year as we hoped. Bother.

I'm very easily distracted today, can you tell?

Right cleaning. Yes.

Day Six - Bathroom

We have two bathrooms, one main one which is the kids bathroom, and an ensuite off our bedroom. 

And they are not my job. So I didn't clean them. WonderMan did. He does one during the week and the other on a Saturday. This is working really well and I'm happy with his standard of cleaning so I don't interfere! I do clean the toilets one extra time each week because I hate grotty toilets. And I really really don't like toilets in bathrooms like we have in our ensuite. 

But I did reorganise them, see?

WonderMan was always telling me off about this cupboard!

Not any more!

Day Seven - Fridge

Woo! I already cleaned my fridge on a whim just before starting the challenge. I'm trying to keep it tidy and give it a quick wipe each week.

We were also tasked to declutter our cookbooks. 

I have a fair few of those! And a mountain of clippings from magazines. I tidied the bookshelf during the first week, but hadn't yet done anything with the clippings. I took Katrina's fantastic idea and organised them all into an expanding file, chucking out quite a few along the way! The file also fits neatly into my cookbook cupboard, perfect! I have removed a couple of rarely used cookbooks to be sold/donated, whatever is easiest. What's left is a well used collection, definitely no dust collectors left!

Our new habit was to meal plan - I do this every week as we are on a strict grocery budget. I never used to plan lunches but this week I included a few recipes I could make anytime and store in the fridge. This made a nice change from vegemite sandwiches!

My meal plan is generally just a list on a notepad. I am yet to find a nice printable, that doesn't also contain a pathetically small space for your grocery list! How are the ingredients for 14 meals going to fit on ten tiny lines? If you find a great menu plan with matching separate shopping list printable let me know in the comments!

Day Eight -  Spare room / kids toy room / craft room

We don't really have a proper spare room, we have a second living area that I use as a sewing room. It's also where we enter and leave the house every day as we are on a sloped block and the driveway leads to this door. Off this room leads our bedroom. There is also a big open window space looking into the kitchen which gives us a great view of the kids outside when we are doing things in this part of the house. It's a gorgeous light filled area but doesn't seem to fit anything I want to do with it. We trialled it is our lounge room but finally settled on the formal lounge and dining area at the front of the house. 

One of my goals was to create a space where guests could stay in comfort. It's a little difficult to do this because we only have three bedrooms and there is NO WAY I am making my girls share a room. My hair would go grey overnight!

Now that I have cleaned and decluttered this space though, I have formulated a plan. Eventually the ping pong table will go when I get my dad's much loved leather top office desk. A sofa bed and large screen will allow me to use the space to sew and let the kids play, but also turn into a comfortable and private sleeping area for guests. Ikea and I will have to have a look at some sneaky storage solutions for people's clothes etc. 

We are well on our way to making good use of this space.

Day Nine - Junk drawer.

I haven't done this one yet, because I don't have much of a junk drawer. More like a series of junk cupboards! I will take a rain check on this one and make it up next week.

Day Ten - Oven.

This is the one that I always procrastinate until it's time for us to move. Then I scrub the bejeezers out of it until it is sparklier than it's probably been for the last five tenants. Meaning I am never the one who gets to enjoy the clean sparkly oven. I am well aware of how stupidly backwards this system is.

This oven was pretty clean when we moved in but it was pretty obvious the glass front only got a cursory wipe over as evidenced by my first baking picture on Instagram:

I promise to do it this week. Promise.

Finally, I caught up on some of last week's tasks.

The lounge room (featuring our new garage sale couch which occasioned the Great Furniture Shuffle):

The laundry: Yet to replace the gigantic basket with separate sorting baskets but it's on the list.

I've also progressively vacuumed, scrubbed and mopped the floors this week as well. Next month I will shampoo all the carpets to remove the build up of winter dirt and give us a fresh start for Spring/Summer.

It's been a massive week, and everyone in the family has been involved with helping and organising. Hopefully by tackling this challenge as a group the responsibility will not fall back on just me in the future.

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