Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Uniforms and Peace

Becoming Minimalist

A very good article detailing why many, many people are now going to "uniforms," a wardrobe consisting of about 30 peaces (per season, they switch it out when the weather changes), or one that contains only a few simple items (such as black slacks and white silk blouses, or my Hubby's black jeans with black "work shirt").

I can't even begin to do as good a job of explaining (though I have posted on it recently) it as the minimalists do, so go read there.

I will be going to the local thrift store to look for black skirts (and some clothes for the kids since this is their monthly "$5 a basket" sale), so, ironically, I need to spend money to cut down :-D Actually, with this particular sale, We usually need to buy two baskets to accommodate my adult-sized sons' "new" pants anyway, so essentially the rest of our clothes are free:-) Not a bad deal at all!

I won't be going to "uniform" shirts. I like the variety there. But cutting back from the waist down will be very nice.

Been studying herbs and blood pressure. Turns out celery is good for something after all!

Monday, April 27, 2015

Maker's Schedule, Manager's Schedule

Maker's Schedule, Manager's Schedule

Yes! this is exactly it!

I do function on a manager's schedule, sort of, at home, but it acts more like a makers schedule. If something interrupts our normal routine (doctor appointments, business, out of town company at my mom's) then the whole day, sometimes even the week! is blown. It has made me very selective of anything like field trips, play dates, etc. They have to be good enough to justify losing a whole day of school.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

They need to go.

I sat in my living room looking around me.

This came after a week of being frustrated and, I hate to admit it, yelling at my kids.

The house just shouldn't be this dirty. We have this many hands to help, and they DO all help.

But it just isn't enough.

Oh, if I spend two hours in the morning cleaning I can get my bedroom, bath, living room all clean and comfortable.

Or I can get the girl's room clean. (gave up on the older boys years ago)

Or I can get the store room, laundry and kitchen decent.

But I just can't do them all; not and teach my kids too, much less write (and I can't NOT write. God has been very clear about that.)

Then there is the nutritious food thing. That takes time, but our health desperately needs it right now.

While looking at my living room that morning the thought occurred to me "What would I actually need to take with me to survive?

I noticed just how much stuff was in that one room that were keepsakes (things to help me remember things I will never forget anyway, like the framed wedding invitation from our marriage 29 years ago).

...how much stuff was decorations (serve no purpose but to just look at them).

...how much stuff was projects that I/someone will get to someday (but never will, of course).

If I boxed up everything from those three categories and took them to storage, do you know how long it would take me, all by myself, to clean the room with just the things we actually use?

10 minutes.


And truth be told, my 7 year old could do a fair job of it by herself.

So my family is shakled to the house doing housework that never gets done for

  • keepsakes

  • decorations

  • and projects to make us feel guilty

No more.

Now, I'm not all of a sudden tossing everything out the door.

First I prayed.

Then I surfed for some blogs and articles about minimalism/decluttering and subscribed.

and I am taking one shelf, cupboard, drawer, pile at a time, as the mood strikes me. Nothing systematic or organized.

Yesterday I put half a 15 gallon bag of stuff in the van to go to town (donate to the thrift store that benefits the abused women's shelter in town).

Today I have 5 bags sitting by the door to go out (OK, I cheated. I took all the misshapen pillows that have been serving as backs for the daybed/couch in the living and stuffed them into three of those bags. I only kept those that are still nice looking. There were so many they couldn't be made to look nice and were in the way most of the time anyway.)

Tomorrow I might not take anything out.

Within 2 days I could see a difference and cleaning already went faster.

Each burst of decluttering produces more benefits.

I'm getting projects done, too.

It is time to stop serving things and start serving my family. If that means things need to leave, than they need to leave.

Monday, April 20, 2015

The ill logic of modern America

Why do Americans spend thousands of dollars to avoid exercising (by buying laborsaving devices) and then pay gyms for the privilege of going and exercising?

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Be Your Own Brand Ambassador, Not Someone Else's - Frugaling

Be Your Own Brand Ambassador, Not Someone Else's - Frugaling


This is why I have seldom dressed my kids in Barbie or Disney clothes!

4 Simple Steps to Stress-Free Homemaking – Tell Friends, Earn Rewards

4 Simple Steps to Stress-Free Homemaking – Tell Friends, Earn Rewards)

Step 1- Start a load of laundry first thing every morning. Don't do a second load at all during the day. Just wash, dry, fold and put up the one load (note this doesn't work for those of us who have more than 7 loads a week. We must schedule in a second time during the day to laundry. But the principle is the same.)

Step 2-  No job/meal is done until all the clean up is finished, which means supper isn't over until the dishwasher is loaded, counters and table washed, and floor swept. The last person to bed runs the washer and the first one up empties it. (Again, this doesn't apply to my family. We have more than two loads per meal! But the principle applies. We wash, dry and put up all the dishes, clean the kitchen and dinning room after every meal.

Steps 3-4 coming soon!

Update on Mom

First of all, Dad (76) is doing fine, just for those who want to know. His color is real good. Though he is obviously in pain with his back, he isn't letting it keep him from doing what he wants to.

Mom had a CT scan and Pt scan last week. We got the results yesterday.

The CT scan said there are no tumors anywhere, which means no active cancer.

The PT scan evidently glows when there are cancer cells. There were three, maybe four glowing spots;
  • liver
  • hip
  • back (but not where she has had pain for the last 3 weeks)
  • and maybe lung (too faint to tell if it was a cancer glow or a bit of fluid on the lungs)
This means she does not have cancer, but it is trying to come back.

We will be trying a chemo pill to see if she can tolerate it and if it will stop the cancer. If it doesn't work she will go back to weekly infusions (IV's).

Please keep us in your prayers.

Monday, April 13, 2015

New ways

So, we are giving a try to a new way to do this. My brother bought an iphone, but then changed phone companies and couldn't use his new phone with this new company. So instead of selling the phone as he couldn't have, making a profit, he decided to gift me with his phone he couldn't use anymore. This is first time I have owned an Apple product and I'm actually quite impressed. It's the best tablet I have ever owned and, yes, it's an iphone. It cost a lot more to put a phone number on a smart phone than it does on a flip phone and I really, really like my flip phone. So I'm using it as a tablet.

It has a voice activation for writing. Looks like it's pretty good though it doesn't look like it's putting in punctuation. I have to do that later.

So we’ll give it a try and see how this goes.