What does it say about me that I don’t mind doing it, and that I feel a TON better after, I’ve gotten on my hands and knees and scrubbed the kitchen floor?

The coffee, sauce, dog drool and god knows what else didn’t appreciate it, but I sure did.

I also learned that the amount of time it takes to bake four dozen cookies (two dozen at a time), is the PERFECT amount of time to sweep and scrub when I divide the area into fourths.

Throw two dozen cookies in, set timer, sweep and start scrubbing.

Rotate cookies 180 degrees and switch racks, set timer, scrub.

Remove cookies, put in more, set timer, scrub.

**Bonus** The first area is now dry!

Rotate cookies 180 degrees and switch racks, set timer, remove first batch from cookie sheet, scrub.

Remove cookies, set timer, scrub.

**Bonus** Area near stove is now dry! Child can get bed time snack of warm cookies.

Remove cookies from cookie sheet.

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14 Days of Dinner

Along with revolutionizing my chore productivity this week, I started organizing my dinner entrées in a way which then drives my grocery list.

Duh, I know.

Sometimes the obvious eludes me.

This has greatly reduced my stress on at least 3 days of the week when I still have absolutely no idea what I am going to cook at 3:30 pm. This presents a problem when you don’t keep processed food in your house and don’t have a microwave.

Since we go out to eat about once a week, I made a list of 11 dinners so I had one “seat of my pants” dinners. (This turned out to be spaghetti.) Our dinner list was this:

  1. Swedish meatballs with egg noodles and peas
  2. sloppy jacks, corn and chips
  3. white chicken chili with cornbread
  4. San Francisco pork chops
  5. hamburger soup with ciabatta rolls
  6. pork chop and apple grille
  7. beef enchiladas
  8. sticky chicken, peas and rice
  9. taco pasta shells
  10. chicken corn chowder
  11. beef stew

Everyday, I simply look over the list and decide what I want to make. If I’m ambitious, I take out meat for a few days. Then, I cross whatever I made off the list!

So easy! I love it!

I used the list to grocery shop, only buying what I needed. How easy is that?! I loved that! Normally, I work off a list of staples and then see what is on sale or what I’m in the mood for. This was so easy!

I’m loving this new organization!

On a side note, I promised a scarf picture last time…here it is. I’m really happy how it turned out.


The Virtue of Lists

I’ve made my Christmas list, and I’ve checked it twice.

Unfortunately, I’m not putting as many check marks next to completed items as I’d like.

Yesterday, though, I did knock out a very belated September birthday present- a ruffly scarf inspired by Dana. It came together very quickly, and I am very pleased with the result. In fact, I’m going to make one for myself because I cannot think of anyone else on my Christmas list who wears scarves. Yeah for me! I’ll post pictures tomorrow.

I also tried something new this week. I read a post, don’t know where, about organizing home chores and meals. The post made so much sense that I had to kick myself. The gist was that you make a list of your Monday chores, your Tuesday chores, etc. and look it over every day to determine what you should do. This has revolutionized my home chore and list life!

First off, let me say that in my professional life, I am highly organized and document everything in My Notebook. This is something I learned, ironically enough, from a highly unethical boss on my first “real” job out of college. The job that I thought was my dream job.

My Notebook is a simple spiral notebook that I document all my notes, calls, needs, lists, etc. It usually takes me one year to fill a notebook. My Notebook is great for a several reasons.

Everything is in one place. If something important gets written on a scrap piece of paper, it gets taped in. I cross off my to do lists in here and add as needed. All my telephone calls and contacts are contained in one place as well as the notes from the follow up.

The other reason My Notebook works so well is because I have a semi photographic memory once I write something down. In my mind’s eye, I can recall what the page looked like, what else was on the page, where it was written, etc. This was particularly helpful when I didn’t have My Notebook handy because I could call someone who could look through it, and I could guide them to the exact page in My Notebook of where the information could be found.

If only I could tinker with the memory to remember WHAT I wrote down instead of where it was…

Anyway, it never occurred to me to apply this same technique to my home life.

Duh. I know.

So, I grabbed a spiral notebook and made it My Notebook. In the front, I made a week chart and wrote down my chores for each day.

I have found that when I spend all my time at home, I get easily overwhelmed by being constantly surrounded by areas that need cleaning. The kitchen gets cleaned at least twice a day, but some rooms or areas within rooms start to collect things. The collection begins to become so daunting because there seem to be so many collections going at the same time. The sofa table is one of the worst collection points.

Anyway, when I look at my chore chart and say to my brain, clean the living room and the dining room today, I can tackle the sofa table which is in the living room because I don’t have to worry that day about the 20 other piles in the other rooms.

Brilliant!

Additionally, I now have one central place to keep all my information that I need…addresses, telephone numbers, paint can recipe numbers, to do lists, etc. I feel so much better!

So, now I must work on crossing one more thing off my list today!