I'm sorry to say that my sink area looks an awful lot like the ones at the beginning of this video. I'm so overwhelmed. I look at everything that needs to be done and just step out of the room.
I've tried FlyLady before. In fact, it was suggested to me a couple years back by some ladies on this site. I had moderate success with it. Her email system has a tendency to be a bit overwhelming, but it has recently been revamped. I have signed up to just recieve the Baby Steps (the first 30 days to get you eased into the program). Today was day one. The task for day one is to shine your sink, which is a very involved task the first time you do it. I really wish I had taken a before and after picture of the sink, because it doesn't look the same at all.
Here's hoping I stay on board and get this place pulled together. I'm tired of living in a shit hole.
My shining sink.
Shiny sink video.
Each day is meant to build on what was worked on the day before. Throughout the day I managed to get a few loads of dishes done. In between each load I made sure to wipe out my sink so it stayed shining.
The new task for today to was to get dressed to lace-up shoes. For those not in the know, this includes taking the time to make yourself feel nice. Nice clothes, do your hair, make-up (if you use it) or moisturizer, and a touch of something to make you feel nice (like a spritz of perfume or some jewelry). And, of course, lace-up shoes. The idea is that having shoes on tells our minds that it is time to do something and making sure they lace up makes it harder for them to be slipped off your feet.
I did get dressed to lace-up shoes this morning. I have been keeping my sink shining. And before I go to bed it will get a fresh shine (dried out if necessary and spritzed with window cleaner, then wiped out).
For those who may be interested in following along, tomorrow's new task is to start exploring the FlyLady website. Specifically, making sure you go here and check out the "Launch Pad" where find the daily missions (don't have to start any of this stuff yet), detailed cleaning lists, reminders (such as deciding what is for dinner, drinking enough water, and other things), a basic routine for the day called the Flight Plan, and other things.
I got up this morning and the first thing I did (after going potty) was getting dressed. Fancy? No. Flattering? Doubt anyone would see it that way. It's a comfortable shirt (complete with holes under the armpits) and my maternity shorts. But I put my socks and shoes on, put my hair up, put some moisturizer on my face, lipstick on my lips, and a spritz of my favorite body spray. DH made a comment about me getting "dolled up" and asking what the occassion was. I explained to him that I was starting over with FlyLady and he was pleased about that.
After breakfast, I washed not only the breakfast dishes but a few more. I don't have many dishes left. They're bulky, so it'll probably take two "loads" to wash (a load to me is filling up the dish drainer). It's nice not having all those dishes piled up and I can actually see a little bit of the counter now.
I've also checked out the launch pad like day 3 says to do. I'm pretty familiar with the site, but it was nice refreshing me on what all the daily stuff is.
On my to-do list today is getting more dishes done (which I already did, but I think I'm going to shoot for another load later today), getting a load of laundry folded and put away (my big issue is having a pile of clothes that need folded rather than a huge pile of dirty laundry), and squaring away a few things in the living room.
As I use the sink, I continue to dry it out. I will most definitely be shining it before I go to bed tonight.
I also went and changed the email list I'm on to include the individual emails. I know a lot of them are testimonials of the products she sells (when she started doing this, she and her husband agreed that they would always keep it free; the items that they sell fund the program so we don't have to pay a membership fee) and I can easily just delete those emails. I added this email list because tomorrow's new Baby Step will be to read at least one (you can also choose the Lite version which doesn't send you a ton of email every day, but one condensed digest).
And things keep coming along! As of today I am keeping my sink cleaned out during the day and shining it before bed (a spritz of windex and wipe it out), getting dressed to lace up shoes first thing in the morning, checking out the launch pad, and reading at least one of the FlyLady emails. I've learned from past experience that signing up for all the individual emails can be a bit overwhelming, but I only need to read a couple and delete the rest.
I only have a few pots and pans by the sink now. Anytime I wash dishes after eating I make sure to grab a couple more from the pile. I had a bunch of breakfast dishes this morning and got them all washed, as well as a couple from the dirty pile, before I went off to church. In just two days and a few minutes each time I've managed to get 3 suitcases, 2 plastic bins, a box, and some other random stuff taken out of the living room and put where we wanted it. (To clarify, we moved in here a couple months ago. When we unloaded the truck we just stuck almost everything in the living room to be sorted through. Most of what we need has been unpacked, but we're keeping it pretty sparce since we only plan on being in this house for the duration of our 1yr lease. We still have a bunch of things that we need to figure out where to store them until we move again.)
The new babystep for day 4 is to read at least one FlyLady email. I've read a couple. Once bedtime comes, sink will be shined again. Things are really looking up for me. I'm not feeling so overwhelmed.
I am so pleased with myself. Last night I was really tired when I went to bed. I did NOT want to shine my sink. But, I made myself empty out my sink and make it shine (mostly because I already said on here that I would be doing it). Did I get the dishes washed? No. And I was really disappointed when I woke up to find that DH had filled the sink with dishes instead of stacking them beside the sink. But the point is I made myself do that one little task even though I didn't want to. That is a huge step for me because I often let something slide "just this once" and then I never pick it up again.
Also, despite still being tired when I woke up and just wanting to stay in my pajamas (maybe lay down on the couch and catch a few more zzz's) I made myself get dressed. I found a nice shirt I like, a pair of shorts, put on some lipstick, eyeliner, and mascara, a sprtiz of body spray, and I'm sitting here with my lace-up shoes on.
I'm reading at least one FlyLady email every morning, as well as checking out the Launch Pad. Today's new Baby Step is to write down any negative thoughts/voices that run through my head. We are our own worst critics and are often unnecessarily rough on ourselves. The idea is to write down any of these negative words and turn them into something positive and loving. A lot of people find FlyLady out of a desire to get their homes clean and organized, but the real lesson that we're supposed to come away with is to love ourselves and to be kind to ourselves. She helps teach us how to do that. That's part of the "getting dressed to lace-up shoes" and other aspects of the program; take the time to take care of you before you stress about taking care of everyone else. If you aren't in a good place, you can't keep your house and family in a good place.
Tomorrow's new Baby Step is what she calls a Hot Spot Fire Drill. Hot Spots are those areas that tend to collect clutter quickly and easily. A Hot Spot Fire Drill is to set your timer for two minutes and deal with the Hot Spot. Will you get it all taken care of? Maybe, maybe not. The point is that it is improved, and with daily attention it can be brought and kept under control.
Today was a backslide for me, sort of. I woke up feeling out of sorts and not wanting to do anything. I didn't get dressed like I should have this morning. I only just read through a couple of the emails. Dishes are slightly backed up again. And I haven't keep my sink shining throughout the day. It's kind of depressing that DH tosses everything into the sink instead of trying to stack it beside the sink, so to keep it shining I'm stuck scrubbing out whatever residue is on the sink when I take care of the stuff.
The new Baby Step for today is the Hot Spot Fire Drill. When I sat down to write this, I had yet to do one. It occured to me that with everything I haven't done today, I could surely spare a measly two minutes to do my new Baby Step. I chose my rolling island. It and my dining table are really the only places I have for food prep and the island is always covered in stuff. Well, now that I've cleared out the living room enough to move the table in there (kitchen is small and doesn't really have the space for a table), the only place left is the island. Two minutes didn't do much, but it is an obvious improvement. I'll probably throw another 2 minutes at it before I go to bed, as well as making sure the sink is nice and pretty.
Even though I have slid back a bit, I'm still going. Yesterday, I got a lot of stuff done in the living room which had been stacked full of boxes and other stuff. Now I have made room for a dining area and brought my upright freezer in from the garage and plugged it in. I have a few small boxes that I need to figure out either where to store them or find a home for their contents. By the end of the week, I hope to have that entire room squared away.
Tomorrow's new Baby Step: as I'm getting ready for bed I need to set out clothes for me to wear for the next day. Here's hoping that tomorrow goes more smoothly than today has.
So.........detailed update on what I have been dealing with for the past week on pg 3. Long story short, I've been sick, on antibiotics, in the ER, and today has been the first day in about a week where I haven't been in pain from my kidney. No, I had not really kept up with anything FlyLady related; I've pretty much stayed in bed unless I had no other choice. However, I picked right back up today. Obviously, not doing anything for a week took it's toll on the progress I had achieved as far as the stack of dishes go.
Had my landlord coming over today to fix the faucet in the shower because the kids somehow managed to break it and we couldn't run any water in the tub since Friday. I didn't want the house to be a complete disaster, so I got dressed to lace-up shoes (to include doing my makeup, though hair just went in a ponytail) and the kids and I worked together and got the bathroom squared away. Then I pulled up a chair to the sink and started washing dishes. Landlord was in and out, and I felt pretty good because I actually got something done.
I sat and read through a couple of the emails, though I mostly deleted them. Having that many built up would be too overwhelming to try to read them all, and I know that she recycles all the essays and testimonials so it'll come back around in the future. I know it's late, but I haven't done a Fire Drill yet today, and I'm thinking of tackling my island again. It's only 2 minutes at any given time.
The new BabyStep for today is to set out clothes for tomorrow. Getting ready in the morning is just a touch easier when you know exactly what you're going to wear and that you have it on hand. No digging through drawers or closets or piles of clean (or dirty?) clothes to find what you're looking for. I think tomorrow I will be wearing a t-shirt underneath my overalls. They look sort of cute on me with the pregnant belly pushing the front of it out. Once I do my fire drill and shine my sink I will set those out and go to bed.
Tomorrow's BabyStep is to break down the things we've been working on into two separate routines; Morning Routine, and Before Bed Routine. We'll need an old 3 ring binder with a couple sheets of looseleaf paper in it and this is where we're going to write down the beginnings of our routines.
At this point I'm simply trying to keep on keeping on. I'm so under the weather with all this health stuff, I'm not moving forward on the BabySteps. At this point, I'm struggling to keep up with what I've accomplished.
To recap, at this piont I am expected to:
-get dressed to lace-up shoes
-keep sink shining
-read FlyLady email
-have reminders posted in kitchen & bathroom and to look at them daily
-write down negative thoughts and turn them positive
-put out Hot Spots for 2 minutes
-set out clothes for the next day before going to bed
-write down simple routines and place in a 3-ring binder
Since I've been through this before, I'm doing ok without having the in-your-face reminders of post-its in the kitchen and bathroom. I've also gotten pretty good about not being too harsh with my thoughts, though I have to catch myself from time to time. My biggest challenge is doing the Hot Spot Fire Drills; I never really got into those when I did this before.
Today I pulled out my old Control Journal and revamped the routines section. I pared it down from everything I had before to the simple routines I'm working on now. The only thing I have different on my list is to clean the litter box in the morning.
While it has been difficult being sick, I have learned a valuable lesson. Just because I face challenges doesn't mean I have to give up completely. I can slow down and take things at my own pace. I can do things in very small pieces; after all, doing a little bit of anything is better than doing absolutely nothing.
Tomorrow's BabyStep is to add a 5 minute Room Rescue to the morning routine. I am debating on moving forward or staying on day 8 for a couple days until I feel comfortable where I am at. I will update when I make that step.