Dear Blog.....yep that's how I blog. There are sooo many awesome (& not so awesome) blogs out there & I'm not here to compete. This blog is for ME. Now, if you happen across it, I pray that you will be inspired, encouraged & enlightened! See, this is my creative way of holding myself I continue to learn & grow in God, raise 4 happy kids with my hubby & strive to bring some lasting organization to our chaotic house!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

No Sympathy for Esau

Because I started the read-thru-the-Bible-in-a-year plan almost 2 weeks into January I'm still playing catch-up & right now I'm cramming Genesis. I love a good historical novel & so I am thoroughly enjoying Genesis, although pls don't quiz me on who begat whom! Today I read about Esau & Jacob, a story I have heard many times over but today I had an aha moment! (you know the story about how Esau comes in famished hunting & wants some of Jacob's tasty stew. Jacob offers to trade the stew for the birthright & Esau agrees) The study note in my Bible says "No Sympathy for Esau. Esau's birthright, which he sold for a meal, was his inheritance as the firstborn son. He stood to be head of a large extended family and it's property. Though his brother Jacob took advantage of him, the Bible gives Esau little sympathy for his role as victim. He "despised his birthright" (25:34) by letting his hunger overwhelm his concern for things of lasting value. Because of this, he was later labeled "godless" (Heb 12:16)".  I wasn't completely sure what "scorned his birthright" meant so I read that same verse in the MSG & AMP versions. The MSG says "...That's how Esau shrugged off his rights as the firstborn." & the AMP says "...Thus Esau scorned his birthright as beneath his notice." Wow, how many times have I done this? I (we) have SO many blessings, rights & privileges as God's children...I don't want to continue shrugging them off!  This aha'd to me not just about my relationship with Christ but also with my home & family. I can choose to do my best in God's strength to keep a tidy home so it will be a haven for my family OR I can choose to allow feelings of being overwhelmed & "accept defeat". Also, I can choose to keep my temper, change my own attitude & build close relationships with my kids OR I can choose to be that yelling, frustrated hag I despise. Hmmm, what a choice! Unlike Esau, I desire to make the correct choice, do the work (in God's strength & joy) & reap even more of God's blessing.

pic from:

Monday, January 16, 2012


This was a very crazy but also very satisfying week. I finished 1 drawer early in the week & then nothing til towards & through-out the weekend, but wow did we (the whole family was a big help!) ever accomplish a LOT! I posted the before pics (click here) on Friday, excellent motivation btw, so now here's the after pics:

This, of course, is our "junk drawer" & it was probably the hardest to finish with all it's little bits & pieces! I had DS#1 take everything out & vacuum the drawer. Then we sorted it all in related piles, turfed the actual junk & viola! 

Next is the lazy susan baking cupboard. This was truly a frightful mess as we'd been simply chucking stuff in & quickly closing the drawer! While I was sorting & purging, my DH was repairing the lazy susan (she had become a little too lazy). I had heavy stuff that needed to go elsewhere plus lots of glass jars taking up way too much room, so I put the brown sugar & icing sugar into iceream buckets & into another cupboard, trading spots with the lighter cake decorating supplies. Then I put the baking powder, soda, salt, corn starch etc into stacking plastic containers I already had on hand & take much less space (they are just the ziploc type so I may buy some tupperware type to give a better seal).

This is the kid's craft/colouring drawer. When we built our kitchen I made sure to have enough drawers to have things like this handy in the kitchen. It really just needed a good clean & re-straightening with a touch of purging. The crayons, markers & colouring books get used the most so I stacked the colouring books at the front & used the 3 sections of the carry caddy for crayons, makers & pencil crayons. Perfect for little hands!

The spice drawer was the 1st drawer I tackled this week & I was beyond thrilled with the results (technically this should have been in next week's assignment, but I got too excited to wait!). The spices were originally in with the cooking utensils in the drawer pictured below. I switched things up & put the spices in a smaller drawer by themselves, put all the bagged spices into lrg baby food jars, used a shoebox to corral them, gave away some stuff I never use & chucked the yuckies!

Now that the cooking utensils had a drawer to themselves I had the perfect spot for my potholders etc. I made a utensil organizer by cutting the sides off cereal boxes & taping them together.

Hopefully this will inspire some kitchen purging, de-cluttering & organizing in other kitchen! :) And now onto Week 3 - Pantry, Spices & Food Storage

Sunday, January 15, 2012

New Year Resolutions (just a tad late!)

My new Amplified Bible by Joyce Meyers
that will be my partner this year!!
 Alright, so last week I talked about my long list of unrealistic expectations for this year & that I needed to write a realistic list with a plan of action. I gave myself til this past Friday to have it posted...well, it really was done...but just in my head! So here I am posting "the list". While I was thinking about what was realistic, what was ridicuclous & how to even pare it all down, I re-read the paragraph at the top of my blog & realized 1/2 of my work was already done! This is what my blog is all about! It says "See, this is my creative way of holding myself I continue to learn & grow in God, raise 4 happy kids with my hubby & strive to bring some lasting organization to our chaotic house!" So that gives me this list:
  1. learn & grown in God
  2. raise 4 happy kids
  3. bring lasting organization to our home
Short, sweet & simple. Now for the action plan!!
  1. learn & grow in God - a GF & I have committed to a read-thru-the-Bible-in-a-year-plan. We'll be encouraging & holding each other accountable. This past year God's been showing me just how important time spent JUST with Him EVERY day really is!! I see a huge difference in my attitude, drive & actions when I'm daily focusing on Him. Right now with the napping schedule as it is, most days DS#2 is out for an hour in the late morning & my DD#2 will play by herself giving me a bit of time to sit down with a coffee, my Bible & a devotional type book. Plus, in early Feb I'll be attending a Prayer Ministry Training Day. While I'm not certain that I'm called to pray as part of a ministry team, I am SO excited about learning to pray for others & how to pray more effectively.
  2. raise 4 happy kids - build RELATIONSHIPS with my kids & pray in specifics for each of them. During the two 10 wk periods that my DH was away at school, our wonderful Pastor came for several lunch visits to make sure I wasn't going crazy! He knows my personality is very anal, specific, perfectionistic & that I've had struggles with depression. I've shared with him how much I long to not be continually frustrated with & yelling at my kids. One major point he made was - put building a solid relationship with each child before the rules. My two fav parenting books also carry that same message - screamfree Parenting by Hal Runkel & Grace Based Parenting by Dr Tim Kimmel. Parenting is 1st about the parent - 1st examine & change your own habits, attitudes & outlook. Kids learn by example, so what example are you setting?? (ouch!) The 2nd part of the action plan is praying for each of my kids. That seems a little obvious but its easy to pray very general prayers & yet I know that God wants to do a whole lot more than generally blessing my kids!!!
  3. bring lasting organization to our home - participate in the 52 Weeks To An Organized Home Challenge. This Challenge really seems made just for me! I tried a shorter but way more intensive challenge last year & it bombed! I needed a specific yet flexible plan. Having 4 kids makes an awfully busy household, plus there'll be another 10 wks in the summer when DH is away, so I definitely need the whole week to get an assignment done! My DH is more than supportive on this as he is just as sick of the clutter & mess as I, so we are doing this ALL together.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Week 2

I've been very excited to get going with the Week 2 Challenge - Kitchen Cabinet & Drawers but this week seemed to just get crazier by the day! It is late Friday night now & my plan is to get my junk drawer & a cupboard or two done tomorrow...we'll see how the day goes!! BUT I did take some before pics to share (yikes) AND I did get my spice drawer done, yeah, actually it's not just's GORGEOUS! But you'll have to wait to see it :) Ok, so I'll share my befores now cause that will motivate me to finish & get to share the afters!

As I said...YIKES! And without further ado...g'night! zzzzzzzz

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Let's Get This Party Started! Week 1

So at the end of December I was scouring the net for just the right housekeeping/decluttering/organizing challenge to do in 2012 & was coming up empty. Thank goodness BFF#1 found it for me on Pinterest -GOT to love Pinterest!!
It's the "52 Weeks To An Organized Home" on the blog (herein called "Solutions101 blog"). A list of the year's challenges are posted & when you sign-up, the new week's challenge is emailed to you each Monday morning, along with a link back to the blog to read thru suggested steps & tons of helpful tips & tricks. I'm blogging this almost a week later so although I'm showing you my Week 1 pics, I'm actually working on Week 2. Anyhoo, before I even announced to my family that we (yes, WE) are tackling this year long operation, my DH had DD#1 clear off all the kitchen counters, wipe down & put the junk away! Wow, how's that for being in sync?? Maybe he really can read my mind! So "Week 1 Kitchen Organization - Countertops & Sinks" was off to a great start. I'm happy that I'll be reaping the benefits of the de-clutter/organizing kick I was on during the last half of 2011. My counters had previously been slightly de-cluttered & I was able to de-clutter & purge even more "stuff". On the Solutions101 blog you're encouraged to re-evaluate how you use your kitchen & what you really need in it. Well, one corner of mine is our Command Central with the family calendar, kid's school files, phone & phone books, junk drawer etc etc. Unfortunately, I can never actually use that portion of the counter for kitchen duty cause it's covered in paper, pens, junk mail & who knows what else! Needless to say that corner took quite an effort to finish - but its now done. I've been very clear with my family (& myself!) that NOTHING may be left on the counters or island...its been 4 days & so far so good.

WOOT! WOOT! YEAH! I'm so excited to see these pics posted. I will be able to look back at the end of the year & say "Yes! This is what living in His strength looks like."

Friday, January 6, 2012

The Lifter of my Head...

I've been trying out my DS's new ipod touch & wanted to see what it would be like as an ereader. On the handy Bible.Is app this morning I read Ps 3.
vs 1 -4 says: O Lord, how many are my foes! Many are rising against me: many are saying there is no salvation for him in God. But you, O Lord, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head. I cried aloud to the Lord and He aswered me from His holy hill.
I thought & marveled about that for a bit & then had an aha moment & reread it to be:
O Lord, how many are my slip ups, bad habits, hassels, obstacles! Many thoughts are rising against me: many thoughts are saying there is no salvation for him her in God, you will fail, no one appreciates you, its not worth the effort. But you, O Lord, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head, my joy & my strength. I cried aloud to the Lord and He aswered me from His holy hill, He revealed His truth, love & grace to ME.
What a truly awesome & lovely God I serve!

 So yesterday I mentioned my mile-long list for 2012. It's not a list that is written down or anything official but rather a mess of expectations that swim before my eyes whenever I think of all the things I started & never finished in 2011 + what I WISH I had accomplished by this stage in my life! While it's healthy & motivating to have a list a realistic goals etc, that is certainly not what my list is! Sooo, I do declare that my 1st 2012 goal is to write a realistic "what I want to accomplish & where I want to be by the end of 2012" list. Not too long, not too short, not overly detailed but having a clear flexible plan. Today is Friday Jan 6 so I'm giving myself until Jan 12 to have it finished & posted! TTFN

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Finishing the old year & Starting the New Year!

whew! Christmas & the "holiday season" is now over. As much as I LOVE Christmas & all the family & friends, finding the perfect gifts, focusing on Jesus's birth etc etc etc, I also love getting back to "normal". Although trying to focus on Jesus is part of my normal, the rest of it does a whole lot of de-railing my routine & I'm a routine person!! I love routines & schedules & knowing what my week looks like before it starts! Anyhoo, this holiday my BFF#1 arrived almost a week before the 25th, which was wicked awesome cause she & my DD did all my baking & some other prep on my list. Unfortunately tho, one by one we all got the 24hr flu. ewww!! No one felt like eating (or doing all the work) so we put off the Turkey Dinner until my Mom & StepDad arrived a few days later. We had a wonderful visit & Christmas Turkey Dinner & by then everyone was feeling fine....until they were struck by the flu in the middle of the night! ewww again! OTHER that that, Christmas was very nice.

Now, onto to finishing up the old prev post was from waaay back in Nov & had me uncluttering/organizing my entryway closet. hmmm, didn't go so well! See, I had recently re-vamped that closet & unless we invest in a major closet organizer system theres not a whole lot I can do! So there I was, stuck on my very 1st challenge! I did however change over from Summer to Winter, purged a few jackets & single mitts etc & added a "stuff to take away box" (I just covered a sm diaper box, added a label & ribbon handle). That along with a good cleaning finished my project. Unfortunately, I continued to be "stuck" cause in my mind I hadn't accomplished this big perfect overhaul....well BFF#1 encouraged me with "get over it! thats good enough, now move on!" or at least something to that effect. OK. So here are the pics:

So that is that. I've also realized that 1 project PER DAY is a little much for me (along with my family of 6, poor housekeeping habits, procrastination, 2 kids under 4yr home with me) right now...& thats OK. 2011 is over & so is trying to do everything perfect or not at all. 2012 is a new year & although I have a list a mile long I want to accomplish, I especially want to "try my best & then accept the results". More about 2012 & my mile-long-list tomorrow!