WE'VE MOVED!! You can now find us at Sunshine and Spoons!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

31 Days-Day 2

Normally, Sunday would be my day off from any cleaning other than what is absolutely necessary.  But today, we're going to get a "control journal" set up so we can jump right into cleaning effectively on Monday.  Actually, I've had mine set up for about 2 weeks now so I still get the day off while the rest of you have to work.  Muhahahahahahaha!!!

Sorry.  The evil laugh just takes over sometimes.

This is where I went wrong when I started doing Flylady the first time 3 years ago.  I tried to wing it and didn't have any lists going.  Obviously, I should have known better as I am a very list-oriented person.  I write things on lists that I've already accomplished just so I can cross them off.  I write lists of what lists I need to make.  I briefly considered "List" as a name for my firstborn. 

The following pictures are pages from my control journal.  To make your own journal, you'll need a 3 ring binder, a dry erase marker (to check things off as you do them), and the "shiny" (not matte finish) page protectors.  If you don't have those things on hand, you can improvise with a computer document, hand written lists, dry erase board, etc. until you can get them.  If you click on the pictures to enlarge them, you'll get a better look at what the pages say.

Before you get started, I have 2 disclaimers for you.
Disclaimer #1:  This is my journal.  It works for me, my family, and my schedule.  If you copy it word for word, it probably won't work for you.  Play around with it (as you can see I've done by the crossed off lines here and there) and come up with a plan that will work for you.  I do most of my cleaning in the morning so I can work on my boutique stuff in the afternoon, but go with whatever works best for you.
Disclaimer #2:  I don't own a printer right now and, as I have a love-hate relationship with all printers, I'm okay with that.  However, that means that you have to put up with my messy handwriting and pages.  Let me know if you need anything translated.

The first page in my book is my version of the Flylady commandments.  And yes, I only have 6 on my list. #2 (Don't allow yourself to be sidetracked by the computer) is kind of a biggie for me.  (Ironic, I know)  #6 (Stop being a martyr and start being a servant) means that you need to stop whining about how your family never helps out and makes a bigger mess and just do it yourself.  Before you know it, they'll be pitching in as they follow your example.  And yes, I know from experience that this does work.  The word "servant" is not meant to have a bad connotation.  Think of it as having a servant's heart that joyfully cares for others.  After taking this picture, I added commandment #7 to the list: "Be flexible!" 
I use page dividers between each section of my control journal.

This is my morning routine.  The first thing on the list is the hardest to check off somedays.  Because of Hubby's work and farm schedule, we don't eat supper until 9:30-10:00 most nights so late nights are the norm.  We both get up at 6:30 in the morning so he can get to work.  Six lines up from the bottom, it says "Pick up Hot Spots".  Hot Spots are areas in your home that collect daily clutter.  Mine is my living room coffee table and kitchen table.  Before I started this, you usually couldn't see either table top, but now they're usually pretty empty.  This may look like a long list, but it takes me less than half an hour to finish the whole thing most days.  The first week will take the longest with the daily routines because you're not just maintaining, you're cleaning and decluttering. 
Note that I crossed off several things on the bedtime routine.  Evenings are busy at my house.  At 6 pm, I feed the kidlets, then I play with them and have them in bed by 8:30 at the latest.  As soon as they're in bed, I get supper going for Hubby and me.  Hubby gets home around 9 pm and showers while supper is finishing, or if supper is ready, we eat first (which is always a fun meal when he's just done hog chores).  We spend some time together on the couch discussing our day, watching tv, and just unwinding.  Then it's off to bed.  So the bedtime routine had to be pared down a bit.

I have a different checklist for each day of the week.  Don't be scared...this is the longest one by far.  This is the day, I do a surface cleaning of the whole house in one hour.  Or, in Flylady, terms, a "home blessing hour".  Don't think of it as cleaning your home, think of it as blessing your home and its inhabitants.  When you do this list tomorrow, don't worry about getting things perfect, just make them better.  Set the timer for 10 minutes for each task and stop when the timer goes off.  No pressure!!!  For example, when you vacuum, don't worry about picking things up off the floor first and getting every corner.  Just push that vacuum through each room, hitting the high traffic areas and pushing toys out of the way with it.  This really works for me because Princess is terrified I'll actually vacuum her toys up and rushes to put them away when she sees me with the vacuum cleaner.  With the help of our weekly zones (more about those later), each of the daily lists will soon be a piece of cake.  Don't forget, you can tailor each of these lists to fit your schedule and family the best.
On Tuesday, you'll set the timer for 30 minutes and spend that time working on the weekly zone.  Yes, I know you're still wondering what a "zone" is.  Keep your britches on, we're getting to that.

On Wednesday, toss anything in the fridge that looks questionable (or during this first week, waves at you when you open the door).  If you're feeling ambitious, go ahead and wipe down the shelves and drawers too, but if you're not, that's fine.  You'll get to that later this month. 
Flylady suggests doing a load of laundry (wash, dry, fold, and put away) each day to keep it under control.  I share a washing machine with our landlady, and it's upstairs in her part of the house so a load a day just doesn't work for me.  If you would rather do a load a day than focus on laundry for 1-2 days a week, go for it.  Then, you can either pick another task for this day or just take it easy!  The 27 Fling Boogie is a decluttering technique.  Grab two bags, one for trash and one for donations, and set the timer for 10 minutes.  Than run through the house grabbing 27 items to either throw away or donate.  The time limit prevents you from sitting there rethinking your decision over every item.  Just toss and go for the next one.  If you have a lot of clutter, I'd suggest starting out with the 27 Fling Boogie 2-4 times a week to clear things out faster.  Because I'm a relentless tosser, I can never find 27 things to get rid of so I do my own version of this called "5-10 Fling Boogie"  Doesn't sound as cool, but whatever. 
With a husband who gets very dirty at work and the farm and two kids who not only get their own clothes filthy, but like to include my outfit in the snot-saliva-messy fingers and faces fun, we have about 8-12 loads of laundry a week.  It takes me a full two days to accomplish it.  Like I said though, if you decide to do one load a day versus two days of laundry drudgery, go for it.

If we had a yard that we had to take care of ourselves, I'd work on that on Saturdays.  But our wonderful landlady does all the yard work so I just take a few minutes to clean out the van, my purse and the diaper bag. 
Here're those "zones" I was talking about earlier.  These will really help your home sparkle and shine by the end of this month.  Next month, even if things still look clean, do the stuff on the lists anyways.  Remember, our goal is to prevent dirt, not clean it.  Okay, so write down all the rooms/areas of your house.  Include a porch or entryway if you have one.  My list was easy because I only have 5 rooms plus a small hallway.  One of the benefits of having a small house, I guess.  Now group the rooms of your house into five categories, no more, no less.  You'll see why in a minute.
This is a sample of a monthly calendar (and a lovely sample of my computer writing skills which are apparently right up there with my pen and paper handwriting skills).  You'll notice that although there are 4 weeks in a month, there are 5 rows of weeks in a month.  Every month is like this.  Now decide which of your zones will take the most work and time to clean (kitchen and living room usually take more time than other rooms in your house) and put those zones in the middle of the month to ensure that you can spend an entire week on them. 
Next, make a list of each zone.  Zone 1 for me is the kids room and where I'll be working this coming week.  You saw the picture of their room I posted yesterday....if it's Friday and you haven't heard from me all week, please call the authorities to look for me in there.  List the different tasks that it will take to make the room sparkle.  As you can see, I got a little carried away with numbering.  This month will be the hardest because you're starting from scratch, but next month, you'll breeze through everything.  I wrote "change sheets" on the bedroom zones, but I do wash the bedsheets more than once a month.  In case you were wondering.  Every day during this week, you can pick a few things to do off this list and check them off with your dry-erase marker.  When you break it down to small tasks, deep cleaning a room really isn't that big of a deal.  Since I started doing this 1 1/2 weeks ago, most days, I spend less than an hour total cleaning my house.

Zone 2 is the kitchen.  This is where you would wipe down the refrigerator shelves and drawers if you didn't do it on Wednesday.

Zone 3 is the living room and hallway for me.  The living room is decent sized although not terribly' big and it functions as the play "room", computer "room", sewing "room", and tv "room so it's pretty packed.  I finally bit the bullet, fought off the mommy guilt that I was depriving my children of toys and packed half their toys away in a closet in their room.  When I'm working on Zone 3, I rotate the toys so they have "new" toys to play with each month. 

You'll noticed that I crossed a few things off this list.  I already sweep and mop the bathroom floor every Monday when I'm doing my "home blessing hour" so I didn't think I really needed to hit that again.  I also crossed off "sort through cabinets and drawers" because I have a habit of having a mini organizing spree every time I open a drawer or cabinet.  Last week, when I did this list for the first time, I spent all day cleaning my shower curtain.  I washed it in the washing machine twice, trying to get the soap scum off and ended up hand washing every inch of the....*count to 10, breathe deeply*... lovely thing.  If your shower curtain is covered in soap scum as mine was, please save yourself the trouble and throw it away.  Seriously, Walmart sells (brand-new, sparkling clean) shower curtains for under $10.  And if you start off this month with a clean shower curtain, it will never get that bad again.   

Zone 5 for me is the master bedroom.  That makes it sound so...nice and grown-up.  It's not.  It's decorated with bright blue carpet (perfect for showing every speck of lint), bright blue sponged baseball bat shapes? all over the wall, and a brightly colored sports themed border encircling the room on the center of the walls.  Don't forget, we rent, not own.  But I can fool myself into believing it's a serene haven at the end of the day by calling it The Master Bedroom. 

 This is the longest blog post with the most pictures, I've ever written.  I'm feeling a bit faint.  I think I'll go lie down for a bit.  See you tomorrow.

Thanks so much for visiting Supermommy!...Or Not.  Please take a moment to "like" me on facebook"!


  1. This was excellent!! Thank you for pushing me to do this! I've typed up the commandments, my morning and bedtime routines, my zones, and my checklists for those zones. I'm excited to start!!

    Thanks again!

  2. Awesome! Just what I'm looking for now that we are expanding into a Family of 4!


Thank you for your comment! I read and appreciate every one.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...