Monday, January 31, 2011

perfect imperfection

what an incredible morning!

this morning, i got up at 7:00. i only hit snooze twice (i've set it for 6:42 to allow me to do just that... yes, i know, i'm a genius). i came downstairs and made myself a small pot of coffee and got dressed. then blithe got up, then the boys got up. ok, granted, blithe woke bram up because she wanted to play with his charlie stuffie, and i suspect asher woke up from the ensuing shrieking, but they quickly decided to get along and play nicely. blithe reminded bram about the "no tv in the morning" rule, and miraculously, he didn't complain.

my coffee was ready, so i poured some into my favourite (read: biggest) mug, which i then placed on the (ahem) clear and clean kitchen counter.

and i asked the kids to bring me their lunchbags.

blithe? check. bram? check. (and quickly, which is shocking, when you consider they have the combined attention span of a doorknob. haha ah, ADHD, how you make our lives interesting!) asher?... asher??... asher, sweetie, where's your lunchbag?? ok, blithe and bram, can you please help asher find his backpack? thank-you.

they divided up the house, each kid getting a zone to search. blithe took the upstairs (i'm choosing to ignore the fact that his backpack is never upstairs... but all her justin bieber stuff is... and again, attention span? what's that???). long story short, i found asher's backpack... on the couch. in the open. right there. but, when i gave it to him, he thanked me so sweetly, and he insisted on getting out his lunchbag himself.

and i stood there, watching him, as he unzipped the bag and pulled out his lunchbag and took it to the kitchen and put it on the chair.

and i was amazed.

he's growing up so fast. he's getting to be so independent. he's more mature every day. he's so quickly becoming his own little person.

it's so beautiful.

then i made the kids' lunches as litter-less-ly as possible (they have a competition at school this week: the class that has the most litterless lunches gets a pizza party. hey, whatever works, right?), using some of the containers i picked up at the superstore for $2 a pack ($2 for a pack of 6, and i got 3 different sized sets). i gave the kids their choice of fruit; blithe and bram each wanted an apple, asher chose a banana.

but while we were discussing the fruit, they all stood together in the kitchen, in their little cluster of three... and i looked and them, and i just thought,

wow. they really are amazing people. they're so beautiful and sweet and perfectly imperfect.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

it's amazing what you find in your kitchen in seven minutes...

it's no secret that i hate housework. and i mean,




well, it's not so much doing it that bothers me. it's the unendingness of it all. i can clean off the counters right now, but by tonight, they'll be covered with stuff again. and laundry. seriously, when is someone going to invent perma-clean clothes????????


a few years ago, i gave FlyLady a whirl (the link is on the sidebar). and found it to be just as overwhelming as the mess in my house. so that was a no-go.

but, a friend suggested it again a few weeks ago, so i decided to sign up again. and yes, it took me a while to figure out how to wade through all those emails (and WOW! there are a lot!), which ones to read and which ones to delete unread. but now that i've figured that out, i'm actually not so overwhelmed by it all.

(and please ignore the irony that i can tackle the clutter in my inbox but want to cry when i look at my coffee table.)


the other day, she issued a challenge: clean up. do it all, toss stuff, put stuff away, wipe stuff down. everything.

for seven minutes.

that's right.

seven minutes.

"bah!" i thought, trapped in some semi-dickensian (time-)warped frame of mind, "seven minutes! i can't clean the house in seven minutes!! humbug!!"

but then i thought... you know... it's only seven minutes... maybe i'll try it...

and prove FlyLady wrong...

because we all know you can't get anything accomplished in seven minutes.

and so, i set off to the black hole pile of clutter kitchen to do some tidying and cleaning. again, thinking, "seriously, seven minutes?? bah! humbug!!" and i set the timer on the stove.

and do you want to know what i did in that seven minutes??

i put away the remaining pantry stuff from christmas that had not previously fit in the pantry. but it fits now... other than the case of KD, so, admittedly, that's still on the floor.

i put all kinds of stuff into recycling.

i almost threw up a bit when i looked in my mini compostainer.

i found several forks.

i found a couple spoons.

i found parts of the floor i'd forgotten were there.

i found out what colour my counter is.

i found my breadmaker.

ok, the breadmaker wasn't lost. i knew where it was. but i couldn't get to it. but now i can!!!

turns out, you can accomplish quite a bit in seven minutes! who knew!!!

ok, probably a lot of you. i'm sure this is some centuries-old strategy and i'm just ridiculously slow in learning it.

and now i have a new housework mantra:

it doesn't need to be perfect; it just needs to be done.

so my plan for today is:

  • seven minutes cleaning the kitchen.
  • seven minutes tidying the living room.
  • seven minutes looking for the dining room table.
  • seven minutes in the bathroom.
and i may, perhaps, if i have time (i have to work at 3:30), do the challenge from one day last week: the 27-item fling. basically, you get a garbage bag (or item from your declutter kit, haha), and get rid of 27 things. could be 27 flyers. could be 27 pieces of clothing that are too small. could be 27 toys the kids don't play with anymore. could be 27 mini chocolate bar wrappers. could be 27 miscellaneous items of various shapes and sizes and degrees of decomposition. just get rid of 27 things from the house. if they're donate-able, then toss them in your vehicle and take them straight to the nearest Goodwill or BFM or whatever. if they're garbage, take them outside. if they're recyclable, recycle them. but just get rid of them.

who knows?? by the end of this week, i just might find my floor... at least, i hope so. 

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i like this blog. this is where i write about homelife. my kids, my pets, recipes, natural cleaning products, gardening, cool finds... that's what i write about here. this is the hands-on part of my personal journey. i'm reclaiming myself, a self i lost in a hospital somewhere, among all the meds, plastic, waste and complexity that comes with Special Needs parenting. i crave simplicity, and this is my journey to create it for my family and me.

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