House


It seems so strange to say, but I’ve been doing a lot more housework lately and oddly enough, though I am more physically tired, I feel as if my day has more focus and purpose in it than when I was just raising my kids.

Ok. That was a long sentence.

I had cancelled our housekeeping service when DH got laid off so our house has not been thoroughly cleaned since April/May. By no means are we filthy people but eventually, bathrooms need to be cleaned. Floors need to be mopped or vacuumed.

However, I am utterly horrible about remembering to do this stuff on a semi-regular basis. So I recently bought an app called Home Routines (it came highly recommended) and I find it very satisfying. I feel as if I am actually contributing something tangible and at the end of the day, I see a bunch of finished tasks and I feel good. Plus, my house is getting cleaner, tidier, and de-cluttered.

It’s based off of the Fly Lady’s methods but don’t let that paralyze you. I was a bit overwhelmed at first, wanting to do everything and be a super tracker of what I was doing. But then I remembered that the app was to serve me and not the other way around.

I decided that I wanted to focus on:

– cleaning
– vacuuming
– decluttering
– sorting mail
– laundry
– organization

Anything that did not help me with these six goals was left off the chore list.

Now some of the daily tasks seem so stupid and obvious. Of course I would still wash the dishes and put them away afterwards even if they weren’t on my daily list. But it makes me feel so accomplished to do the dishes and then check it off!

Plus, I now remember to take my prenatal vitamins and calcium pills as well as wear my night guard to prevent teeth grinding. (Since I am constantly hurting the bones in my feet, I figure this is a good thing.) It also helps me remember that I do a good amount of cleaning throughout the day.

It’s only been three days and even though I don’t complete everything, I feel a deep satisfaction. Plus, I’ve cleaned and decluttered a good amount of crap already. Yay!

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Sometimes, I impress even myself with what I get accomplished. Now, of course, keep in mind that this type of occurrence is few and far between. Hence the commemorating and self-congratulatory post. πŸ™‚

Yesterday, I managed to:

1) Buy a new mattress
2) Buy a new toilet seat (I just broke our 3rd toilet seat – DH broke one and I broke another)
4) Install said new toilet seat (I also installed another new toilet seat the other day)
5) Reorganize 3 kids’ bookshelves
6) Accept delivery of the new mattress
7) Rearrange the furniture in DS (and now DD’s) room – especially arranging the mattresses next to each other and setting up the bed rail so my kids don’t roll out of the window. (The frames are really high up!)
8) Sell a table
9) Start 2011’s yearbook (not just choosing and uploading pictures – doing the actual layout!)
10) Sell a bunch of stock
11) In addition, my normal day of feeding and caring for the kiddos

I’m awesome! Ok, not that awesome. But whatever. I will take what I can get. πŸ™‚

It’s that season again – prepping for the new baby! As some of you long time followers know, for DS, my first, I never really had a nesting phase. With DD, I went crazy and did a massive purging of the house. As suspected, I didn’t do anything for another year and a half until the past few months while pregnant with DS2.Β 

Since then:

1) I finally attacked 3-4 years of mail and filing – it only took a full day. Sigh. If I would’ve just done it daily, then I wouldn’t have this problem. But it’s done now, and thus far, I’ve been pretty good about keeping up.

2) I am putting up all sorts of things on craigslist (finally). Including (but not limited to): my wedding dress, some floor lamps, an old Kindle Fire, misc. toys, shelves I bought but never put up, etc. Hopefully, I can sell all this stuff before the baby comes. I realize the wedding dress will not go as quickly as the floor lamps did. LOL.Β 

3) I have purchased a ridiculous amount of used small Legos. I think I’m done now. πŸ™‚ My kids are all set for both the Duplos and the Legos – and all mostly used. πŸ˜€ I can’t believe how expensive these things are brand new. RIDICULOUS. What a scam!

4) I need to buy another twin bed to put it next to DS’s twin in his room. That way, the two oldest can share a big king sized bed and the baby can sleep with us the first month or so. Once the new baby is moved to his room, I’m sure the older two will find their way back into our room at night.Β 

5) I REALLY have to finish our living trust. I had it drawn up when DS was born – over three years ago! I just never read it or had it signed or put anything in it. SO STUPID. Must get this done before DS2 comes along. Otherwise, it’s never going to happen.

6) Since most of my food garden did NOT sprout, I’m wasting a lot of water. So I think I need to plant more stuff – otherwise, I spent a lot of money and water for nothing. I intend to do something soon-ish.

7) Over the years, I have purchased to box freezer to put in the garage and I have stuffed that thing (along with my freezer in the house) as well as my pantry full of food that I don’t even know I have. So, my goal is to eat out of my pantry and freezer for awhile. (Plus, I gotta let the thing defrost.) Perhaps it is finally time to get rid of the gallons of breast milk I have frozen – from DS. (Yeah, you read that right. DS. I gave away all of DD’s milk. I didn’t quite have my act together for DS. I have plans for turning it into soap – but that hasn’t happened. So maybe I really just need to bite the bullet and toss it. BUT IT’S LIQUID GOLD!!!)Β 

But ultimately, it’s silly to have all this food go uneaten – and since DH is unemployed (though receiving a paycheck), I’d rather we buckle down now and spend less on food we already technically have. It’s almost like a treasure hunt. We have a lot of frozen birthday cakes. LOL.

***

I think that’s it for now. When you have too many items on a to-do list, they tend to go undone. *sigh* I guess the first thing I should do is go to the garage and take out all that breast milk and toss it. It physically pains me but must be done. Wish me luck!

The other day, DD and DS had dumped all these goldfish crumbs on the stairs. When DS pointed the out to me he said, “It’s ok, Mama. ι‚£ε€‹δΊΊζœƒδΎ†ζΈ…. (That person will come clean it.)”

We had a housekeeper until DH got laid off. It was a nice luxury – but I didn’t realize that DS thought that was the only person that would clean up the mess – especially since I am always vacuuming up their crap. 😦 We live a life of incredible privilege.

We have dear friends over tonight because we’re all going GARAGE SALING tomorrow. πŸ˜€ It’s one of the largest neighborhood garage sales (with around 30-40 homes participating) and it’s in a super nice area – KEY. So, I’m prepping for that. I know. How could my house possibly fit more crap? We’ll find a way. Oh, yes.

Speaking of financials (since I just did them for the month for our family), I did some fancy calculating about our mortgage. (In my head, of course. Kidding! Here’s a great Amortization Schedule excel sheet that you can use. It’s awesome.) Ever since we got our mortgage, we’ve paid an additional amount every month on our principal. This year, DH wanted us to make an extra full payment a quarter. In total, it works out to about 5 extra payments (in full principal, not just paying down interest) a month. When I input that all in the fancy spreadsheet, we will pay off our mortgage in June 2026. That is 14 years from now instead of 30.

FUCKING INSANE.

The power of compound interest and math.

(Incidentally, there will be arguments that it is not wise to put so much money away in our mortgage since it’s not liquid and the opportunity cost of the market. Suffice to say, we have enough in savings/emergency funds and at this rate, the market is volatile and paying down my mortgage “earns” me 4.875%. That’s better than cash and more certain than the stock market. Don’t worry. We have money in the market.)

This is quite the incentive for me to STOP SPENDING SO MUCH MONEY.

One of the blogs that I read regularly has a new feature by one of the writers. She now posts up her weekly goals into four categories:

  1. Family/Mothering Goals
  2. Personal Goals
  3. Home Management Goals
  4. Business Goals

At the end of each week, she will post how she did. I think I will adopt this as well for 2012. I don’t think I will have any Business Goals for the moment. It is a bit daunting – but I will start on the first three. πŸ™‚ So, for this week – even though it’s Wednesday (I am writing this on Sunday night), here they are:

Family/Mothering Goals

  1. Go to the park at least once
  2. Limit screen time to 1 hour a day (this includes iPhone and iPad!)

Personal Goals

  1. Go to bed before 11pm
  2. Create Xmas cards and family calendar
  3. Finish 100 pages of Known and Unknown by Donald Rumsfeld
  4. Walk on the elliptical for 30 minutes at least 1x
  5. Read at least 5 NYT articles a day (NOT the fluffy pieces)

Home Management

  1. NOT buy anything online/craigslist (YES – that is a seriously difficult goal)
  2. Cook at least 3 dinners
  3. Pack at least 3 lunches for DH

Wish me luck!

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