Are you living in what Marla Scilly, aka The Fly Lady, calls CHAOS? (Can't Have Anyone Over Syndrome). Well then, join the club there are thousands, perhaps even millions of us!

I have struggled with organization in almost every area of my life for, well, my entire life. By starting this blog I hope to encourage others that they too can get and stay organized!

While it will probably embarrass my children for me to air the dirty laundry here, in full color photos, if it helps just one person along their own journey to getting organized and staying that way, it will have been worth it!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

To Catch You Up With Where I'm At.

So where am I right now along this path? Well, I have been in a profound state of CHAOS for quite a few years. I really couldn't tell you when it all began but I'll hit a few highlights. My oldest daughter graduated college and moved home with all her stuff that she'd had at school, in addition to all the stuff she had left behind in the first place. I will say she did try and whittle it down, but at first there was a lot of it. My son and his girlfriend (now wife) lived with me for a bit, they were both in the National Guard and went to boot camp about 9 months or a year apart.

Then my daughter-in-law stayed with me while my son did a tour in Iraq. They got their own place and took most of their stuff with them. Though I have found some of my son's things from when he was younger stashed in various places.

Between then and now my younger daughter, her boyfriend and her 3 girls moved in with me, then out, then she and the girls moved in and out.....and her older sister comes home about every 12 months to visit. She even works on reducing the pile of her stuff in the spare room.

In the meantime, in 2009 I spent most of the year working 48 hours a week away from home, keeping a big garden and babysitting those three grand daughters 7 days a week. (Their momma was working full time and going to school full time) At the same time their grandpa (we've been separated over 20 years) moved to the area when he retired. They were supposed to fix it up so that he could stay in a trailer out back but he ended up spending most of 18 months in my spare bedroom. The room I use as my paint studio became a dumping ground for everything I couldn't deal with through all of this.

By the way, did I mention? I'm a huge pack rat! I save all kinds of stuff. Mostly because I never finish a project. Or I finish a lot of projects, then something else is going on in my life and my attention is pulled elsewhere. In the meantime all those special tools and supplies languish in a corner or a pile or a cupboard awaiting my attention again.

In 2010, everybody moved out, my job mostly went to 40 hours a week and the girls and their mom moved away where I don't see them much. Reveling in the peace and quiet I spent most all of 2010 focusing on my artwork.

Well, Marla Scilly, the Fly Lady says "Focus Makes Me Fabulous", and yes it does. But I can't focus on more than one thing at a time! If I'm painting, the house is trashed and the garden is dead. If I'm gardening the house is trashed and I'm not making Art.

So I decided, about 21 days ago to begin trying to find some balance, to become more organized in all areas of my life. So I pledged to do 15 minutes each and every day in each of these four areas: my garden, my kitchen, to declutter and my desk, paperwork and business.

At first you couldn't tell much difference. It took most of the first week to get my kitchen in reasonable shape and it still has a long way to go. But gradually it is paying off. There is less clutter and fewer cobwebs in the house and fewer weeds in the garden.

Here is part of the front room, before
and after I worked in here for 15 minutes. While not completely finished, you can see a difference.
By pecking away at the mess on a daily basis, things are beginning to look better.

I haven't read Regina Leeds book, One Year to an Organzied Life but looking it over on Amazon, it looks amazing! A week by week plan to organization, along with some techniques to work through the emotional barriers we sometimes have to time management and begin organized. I'm certainly adding it to my wish list!

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