Do you ever feel like everything you do is wrong; that you can do nothing right? I do sometimes feel like that. I can’t seem to keep my house clean enough or be consistent enough with getting enough school done in a day. My laundry system is failing (ok ok it’s currently non-existent). If I have a great day with school and chores, I somehow can’t manage to get dinner cooked.
When things start feeling overwhelming ~ the lesson plans aren’t done, the laundry is piling up, menu plans are a distant thought in a galaxy far far away ~ it becomes important to think about the things you are getting right. For me, anyway, I need to step back and look at what is going well or when I am doing things right.
This past week I finished reading Getting Rid of It: Eliminating Clutter from Your Life by Betsy and Warren Talbot. I liked the book OK (that’s a two star rating on Goodreads). I don’t think a 40 something year old, home schooling mama who doesn’t have an outside career is the intended audience but there were some things I could take away and apply to my own house.
I’ve posted before about how I want to be when it comes to organization and I’ve written a blog post or two or three about organizing. It might sound like I’ve got it all together but I don’t. The problem though is that sometimes I focus so much on how NOT together I am that I fail to see those tiny tings that I did get right or am doing right.
At first, while reading the book, I got hung up on the fact that this couple was a) childless, 2) both working, 3) getting rid of everything they owned so that they could travel the world. I think a tiny part of me was jealous about traveling all over the world but that was the easy part of get over. I wanted to be a stay at home mom and though I would love to travel the world, I did do lots of travelling in my BC (Before Children) life.
Many of the solutions proposed just did not appeal to me. I just could not imagine inviting my friends (FRIENDS!!) over to buy my stuff. Offering stuff for sale? No problem. My friends buying stuff from me? No problem. Having a party for the sole purpose of getting my friends to give me money and take my things away? Um no. Just not my style. It’s beyond my comfort zone.
Oh right, I wasn’t going to focus on what I was doing wrong. I was going to focus on the bits that made me feel good because I was doing something right. First, I found something I had done right in the kitchen. Earlier this year, a friend of mine and I were talking about decluttering and decluttering methods. She described one suggestion she had read (maybe she read it from this book? I don’t know.).
Here’s the gist of the idea: empty the contents of your kitchen drawer into a box. When you use something it goes back in the drawer. At the end of 30 days, whatever you don’t use is still in the box and you can get rid of it. I blogged about it last January in my O is for Organizational Wanna Be.
The other “right thing”, the one that actually inspired this post, is the linen closet. From Chapter 7: “Bathrooms”, the subsection is linens:
The biggest problem with having way too many linens is how they pile up in your life, letting you drag our your laundry days because of your huge supply. Before long you have 2 or 3 loads of towels waiting to be washed along with 2 changes of bed sheets. Your linen closet is full of clean towels and your hamper or floor is full of dirty ones.
Oh my. I am so doing something right. I read that and I laughed out loud. For real! I was grinning from ear to ear. I’m smiling right now as I type this up. Do people seriously have that many linens? This fall I will celebrate 20 years of marriage and for the first 19 years, I only bought 3 towels maybe? Oh and a dozen or so wash cloths. All the towels we owned had been wedding gifts with a few Christmas gifts. We hadn’t had new towels in 10 years. We finally broke down last Christmas and bought a dozen large, soft, fluffy bath towels. We also bought two really large fluffy and wonderful bath sheets for ME. Really good quality. Before that if I am not sure I even owned enough towels for two loads of laundry. I guarantee that if I have two loads of towels that there are no clean towels in my linen closet.
Oh and you know what else I am doing right? I only have one really good set of sheets for my bed. I do have a back up set but I tend to wash my sheets, dry them and put them back on the bed. I’ve been thinking I want to own another set of sheets. I might have two loads of sheets to wash but that is for 6 beds!
Anyway, I love that when it comes to decluttering my kitchen and having a streamlined linen closet I am Doing Things Right. How about you? What are you doing right?
Check out this week’s letter!