Category Archives: finished projects!

Good Enough

Well, the three areas I want to keep clean, bathroom counter, the dishes and the laundry are all being worked on, daily, which is new. It isn’t always perfect, in fact I’d say it’s rarely perfect, but I have a large backlog of laundry to get through, the bathroom is still a construction zone, and the kitchen, although cleaner, isn’t where I want it to be, ultimately. That said? I’m going to say I’ve done what I set out to do.

Why? Because I know I can and probably would keep pushing the goal line out, looking for perfection, rather than giving myself credit for what I HAVE done. It’s a characteristic of mine that whatever I do is never enough, fast enough, complete enough, or in short good enough.

(Hello abuser!)

So, I’m going to declare a victory instead. And add something new. I want to start making the bed, daily. All of this is really simplistic and easy, if you don’t have panic attacks in a clean and ordered space. I’d really love it if someone could just come up with a drug or a switch they could flip somehow and it would just go away. No panic. No guilt. No “not good enoughs”. Because then I could set a goal and just X off the steps in between as I got them done.

I’d give one whole heck of a lot to have that work! But after 50+ years of fighting myself I know it doesn’t. I can get all caught up in trying to make the perfect plan. I can get all caught up in all the things I haven’t done. I can get all caught up in whatever flavor of not being perfect/good  enough fits, this time. Or, I can do a dramatic push and work and work and work — and then find a reason to sabotage myself, because internally I am freaking out/panicking.

So — I won’t do that this time.

It’s not perfect. I don’t care. It’s getting done, most of the time. It’s better than it has ever been — and that has to be good enough, because I know that if it isn’t either I’ll never get there OR I’ll freak out/panic.

So. I’ve won!

J

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Stealing From Our Grandmothers

Because I make rugs from old clothes, I’m always looking at the cheapest clothing in thrift shops with the idea that I could maybe use the materials? A few weeks ago, I found a super heavy, dirt brown wool pullover sweater. Ugly color. Not an attractive shape, but it was WOOL and heavy….

One of my rarely used tools is my long-pole feather duster. It upsets me for three reasons.

  1. That although I got it used, it’s made with ostrich feathers. (If it was made of chicken feathers I don’t think I’d mind so much, hypocrite and happy chicken consumer that I am!)
  2. It doesn’t work all that well. It has a telescoping metal handle, which is handy when trying to clean the staircase fan/light. It gets the fan blades cleaner but NOT clean!
  3. It’s a single-use tool. I only use it on the fan, and as I said, it doesn’t work that well….

Accordingly, I hardly use the feather duster. I feel guilty every time I look at it thinking that some bird’s tail feathers (and likely nothing else) were used to make it.

Our grandmothers covered their brooms with cloth, by pinning it on, to make dusters.

When I cut the felted sweater into pieces today, I had the yoke with the neck separate, and thought, “WTF a I going to do with that?” And then it hit me — one arm was flattened out and wrapped around the bottom of my broom. The neck was threaded onto the handle of the broom, and wrapped around the first piece. Fastened with a kilt pin? I now have a “duster” with a thick, recycled wood pad — on the end of a pole.

When I need to use the broom as a broom, I’ll just unpin the yoke, remove the now dirty sleeve for washing and put away the yoke and pin with the other flattened sleeve.

The wool started out dirt colored, so I don’t have to worry that using it will stain it and it will need replacing.

I already had the pin.

The sweater yielded 2 small sheets heavy brown felt, two dusting pads, a method to connect them to my current broom,  and the ability to remove another single-use tool from my life. Whoopee! [The feather duster is in the discard bin.]

The only thing I don’t have? A way to clean the fan, but that’s not new.

Productive Monday Morning

I haven’t made up my 6 list today. But here’s what I’ve done this morning:

  1. Washed dishes
  2. Washed rags
  3. Swept the hearth, entry, living room, and hall.
  4. Polished the fire screen.
  5. Depilled my muffler. (wonderfully soft/fuzzy, wants to pill!)
  6. “Mopped” the hearth. (Spray bottle and rag on my knees, no mop.)
  7. Gotten down a block of soap to be cut into bars.
  8. Went through a stack of mail, cull/shred/file.

It’s 10:15 a.m., I think this counts!!!

Backlogged Backlog!

Here’s what remains of the old lists. These are going to be used as “fill ins” when appropriate, or if I just get them done, they’ll be noted.

My plan is to start anew, Monday 1/8, and see if I can’t get this idea to work the way it is supposed to, that is, NOT have lingering chores, for months. The malingering list indicates to me that the tasks were too intensive, too time consuming, or ?. As I’ve said before, the idea is that the tasks are short, simple things to do, not involved or complex.

Here’s the outstanding backlog. If I eliminate a task, I’ll note why or if I complete it, I’ll do the usual line-through and date.

  • Send the family pics, etc. to the cousin and school who want them.
  • Cull the veggie seeds and Done sometime in 12/2017. figure out what to order.
  • Make the first patterns for the chair reupolstery effort.
  • Work on the back storage.
  • Oil the sharpening stones. Done, date unknown 2/2018.
  • Put up the new pantry labels.
  • Design the pattern for the hearth rug. Has been designed and redesigned, and redesigned, several times. May still be changed, yet again. 2/2018
  • Measure some area for the “house book.”  Done some time in Dec. We measured how big the backsplash was because we thought we were going to buy a new one. (We didn’t.) We also measured the bathroom vanity because we were going to buy a new one of those (We did.)
  • Research the newspaper job idea.
  • Get the floor waxer into the attic.
  • Data entry on the accounting or food planning idea.
  • Work on the new food inventory/planning idea.
  • Swim, at least once and pick up your swim ticket.
  • Eliminate more duplicates. I do this all the time. I have a box of dupe books going to a friend at some point already made up.
  • Get the junk OUT of at least one defined place.
  • Open the Christmas trunk, see if you want to keep it all?  Done sometime before Christmas.
  • (fill in) Get the accounting up to date, so you haven’t got a panic for the taxes! (MONTH: 1, 2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12)
  • Get some of the cleaned laundry hung up which isn’t. I’ve been doing this almost daily for a while now.
  • Do a short inventory of the meat in the big freezer. (Probably something like 1 chicken, 3 lbs ground round, and 1 other package of mixed chicken parts. . . but I don’t know exactly!) As of right now, 1/12/18, there are exactly 1 package of meat in the freezer, a package of pork chops. I don’t need a list! 1/12/18
  • Get the rice in one place, instead of 2-3, as it is now.
  • Clean, wax, organize the snow scoop, shovels, etc.Not sure when this got done, but it is. Christmas 2017
  • Use the commercial napkins for their intended craft, or get rid of them! Pulled from the 2 places where they were stored. Still have to be bundled up for resale or donation 2/27.
  • Get the odd pieces of insulation into the basement.
  • Check the water heater’s filter, does it need to be cleaned? DH did this sometime in Dec., not sure when?
  • Sand some of the marks from the floor, at the edges.
  • Update linked in.
  • Work on the house binder.
  • Clean out the small ice box.
  • (fill in)Put laundry away.
  • Eat the last watermelon.
  • Clean the couch.
  • Get the coffee ad framed.
  • Clean part of the upstairs that hasn’t been touched in some time. Bathroom closet: demoed, patched, primed, painted…. 1-2/2018
  • Put away the canning supplies if not in use.
  • Put up the 3 missing hurricane clips
  • Clean the office chairs.
  • Find a place to put away the dehydrator racks and do so when appropriate.
  • Recaulk the bathroom as needed. closet/niche done 1-2/2018.
  • Figure out a new way/place to store the yarn and put it away. Should go in the drawers in my office where the tshirts, pieces of jeans, and the commercial napkins were stored. The tshirts are being used, the jeans and napkins sold or donated. 2/27/2018
  • Find a new home for the cat towel basket. (Old towels used for car washing, spill clean up, whatever!)

    Chores on hold or in process, for whatever reason

Make up/try the Naval Academy brass polish. Down to one container 12/7/17, when that is low/out, I will make up the Naval Academy polish, if I can find the recipe again!

Wash the net curtains. First pair pulled from over the dry stores 4:30. Washed Tues. 10/24 a.m. One pair to go. Two pairs to go.

Cull books from one “holding pattern” bookcases. Either they’re out or they stay!, in process Thurs. a.m. (I did the 1st shelf.)

Put family photos in the album. Can’t be done. Photos located, album missing!

Clean off DH’s desk. This is going to be delayed until he and I catch up. I pulled everything from the top drawer on his side of the dresser, we’re still going through all of that.

6/35 or 17.1%

 

Friday’s 5 & Tuesday’s too!

Okay, okay. Catch up. Today is hyper busy! The tile HAS to go into the basement today,  it’s supposed to snow tonight.  Also various other yard clean up things have reached criticality because of that. Not negotiable.

Organizing my day accordingly. I’m fighting off a cold, and will be so dirty after going in/out of the basement, hauling things to the sheds, etc. I will *have* to bathe. But I can’t go in/out of the house or up/down into unheated basement with wet hair.Guaranteed to make me sick. So the plan already started is:

Prep veggies for lunch/dinner soup. Get them started. (Done!)

Eat breakfast (Done.)

Move tile into basement. Do other yard clean up until 10. Work on pantry. Bathe, Make/eat lunch, then see what needs to happen the most!

Last Friday, I used the day to eliminate a chunk of the backlog. That won’t happen today! Although I will use the list, if it fits, to include the chores I’ve just talked about.

Today’s Five:

  1. Get the sand set up. Fri. 9 a.m.
  2. Get the onions stored properly. Fri., don’t know the time.
  3. Deal with the excess yams. Fri., don’t now the time.
  4. Get the trellises upright, again. (They fell down in the storm we had a few weeks ago.) Weds. 11/15
  5. (fill in) Clean the entry. Fri. 2:20 p.m.

Tuesday’s Five:

  1. Add labels to the pantry crates. Thurs. eve.
  2. Clean part of a bookcase, any bookcase. Fri. 2:35 p.m.
  3. Deal with the farm food. Fri. don’t know the time.
  4. Grab last-minute food from the garden. Missed this, we had a hard freeze.
  5. Make sure there’s enough storage containers for the last glut.

Backlog:

  • Dust the cuprack.
  • Get some of the cleaned laundry hung up which isn’t.
  • Do a short inventory of the meat in the big freezer. (Probably something like 1 chicken, 3 lbs ground round, and 1 other package of mixed chicken parts. . . but I don’t know exactly!)
  • Get the rice in one place, instead of 2-3, as it is now.
  • Clean, wax, organize the snow scoop, shovels, etc.
  • Use the commercial napkins for their intended craft, or get rid of them!
  • Dust the stair fan. Sat. morning, don’t know the time.
  • Get the odd pieces of insulation into the basement.
  • Check the water heater’s filter, does it need to be cleaned?
  • Sand some of the marks from the floor, at the edges.
  • Deal with the squashes from the farm.
  • Make room with the cold cereal for the hot cereal to go too.
  • Get the island/kitchen side cleared.
  • Update linked in.
  • (fill in) Send checks to publisher and BIL. Tues.
  • Work on the house binder.
  • Clean out the small ice box.
  • Get through the last of the tomatillos.
  • (fill in) Get things put away in attic which need to go there and pull something out which needs to go elsewhere. Sat. 11-3 pulled something out.
  • (fill in)Put laundry away.
  • Clean the oven, so it’s clean before Thanksgiving!
  • Dust the electronics in the office.
  • Eat the last watermelon.
  • Cull or add to the candle collection, as needed.
  • Get the mittens, etc. (winter gear) out of the attic and swap in the summer bill caps, etc. Fri. got winter gear from attic. 9 a.m.
  • Get the salt & sand next to the front door.
  • Clean the couch.
  • Get the coffee ad framed.
  • Clean part of the upstairs that hasn’t been touched in some time.
  • Double check the emergency supplies. (fill in)
  • Put away the canning supplies if not in use.
  • Put up the 3 missing hurricane clips
  • Put the grill away.
  • Put the tile in the basement. (I recently acquired a LOT of mosaic tiles.)
  • Get the ladders put away for the season.
  • Get the supplies for the knitted pillow all in one place so you can finish it!
  • Clean the office chairs.
  • Find a place to put away the dehydrator racks and do so when appropriate.
  • Recaulk the bathroom as needed.
  • Figure out a new way/place to store the yarn and put it away.
  • Look at the stored snow tires. Need new ones? In the budget?
  • Examine winter coats for flaws, etc. 
  • Find a new home for the cat towel basket. (Old towels used for car washing, spill clean up, whatever!)

    Chores on hold or in process, for whatever reason

Pick up the yard, put more items away for winter. 11/3 Chairs put away, hoses, hose table. (All need to be covered.) Also not-so-great paint in the shed. Raked around the house, or most of it. (Need to pick up leaf piles.)

Make up/try the Naval Academy brass polish. Deferred because I have THREE containers of general metal polish. I want to use up at least one of those before I make up more. I sure don’t need 4!!!

Go thru the record collection, cull. First part done. Moving to in-process 10/27, 2nd piece done 11/2

Wash the net curtains. First pair pulled from over the dry stores 4:30. Washed Tues. 10/24 a.m. One pair to go. Two pairs to go.

Fertilize the lawn. Did the dooryard lawn and the lawn on the street side of the bulb bed. Tues. 4:30 p.m. Lots more to do! Finished Fri. 11/10 

Cull books from one “holding pattern” bookcases. Either they’re out or they stay!, in process Thurs. a.m. (I did the 1st shelf.)

Put family photos in the album. Can’t be done. Photos located, album missing!

Clean off DH’s desk. This is going to be delayed until he and I catch up. I pulled everything from the top drawer on his side of the dresser, we’re still going through all of that.

 

Finish the freezer/fridge cleaning. More done, but not complete. 7:00 p.m. Move to on-going.

 

5/35 or 14.3% 6/35 or 17.1%

 

Friday’s 5, backlog. . . & catch up!

Today’s List

  1. Put away the canning supplies if not in use.
  2. Remount the last yardstick.
  3. Find a new home for the basket which holds the “cat towels.” (Old towels used for whatever is needed: car washing, spill clean up, whatever!)
  4. Go through the eyedrops and make sure they’re all current. 12:35
  5. Pick up the yard, put more items away for winter.

Backlog:

  • Clean the dusters. Fri. 10:45 a.m.
  • Clean the ironing board, iron, & supplies. The cover is washed, I will replace the pad at some point and the board feet, etc. have all been cleaned as has the iron. Fri. 5:00 p.m.
  • Work on the “everything file” notebooks and their boxesFri. 11:35 a.m.
  • Polish some of the metal decorative pieces.
  • X something off this or the backlog list (fill in). Fri. 10:30 a.m.
  • Put away everything in the hall which is out of place. Fri. 11:10 a.m.
  • Dry the mint/lemon balm.
  • Put up the 3 missing hurricane clips
  • Replace the saved emergency water supply. (I deliberately used the old water supply this summer.)
  • Put the tile in the basement. (I recently acquired a LOT of mosaic tiles.)
  • Get the ladders put away for the season.
  • Clean the vinyl flooring strip in the sunroom.Fri. 10:30 a.m.
  • Get the gifts sent. What was ready was mailed this afternoon. Friday 10/27
  • Clean two shelves of the bookcases in the office. Fri. 11:20 a.m.
  • Wash the rug which had been in the laundry and put it back. Rug washed 3:50 Fri. 10/27, ran out of quarters. In our dryer now. Should be done by 5 p.m.
  • Get the supplies for the knitted pillow all in one place so you can finish it!
  • Get the rest of the better paint into the attic.
  • Clean the office chairs.
  • Find a place to put away the dehydrator racks and do so when appropriate.
  • Use up the ice cream base in the freezer.
  • Put garden hoses away for winter.
  • Recaulk the bathroom as needed.
  • Figure out a new way/place to store the yarn and put it away.
  • Look at the stored snow tires. Need new ones? In the budget?
  • Make up/try the Naval Academy brass polish.
  • Examine winter coats for flaws, etc.
  • Put ice scrapers in the cars, examine and see if they need replacement? My car is done. DH will do his, I hope! I bought a new metal bladed scraper for my windows. 10/27 

Chores on hold or in process, for whatever reason:

Go thru the record collection, cull. First part done. Moving to in-process 10/27

Sweep the decks Tues. 1 p.m. , porch & entry (fill in). Because it’s fall, I’m not sure you could tell that I swept the decks at all, however, I did do it! It’s raining (Tues – Thurs.) Got the entry Fri.1: 30 (10/27). Also removed the worst of it from the decks, again. Finished! Fri. 10/27 6:00 p.m.

Wash the net curtains. First pair pulled from over the dry stores 4:30. Washed Tues. 10/24 a.m. One pair to go. Two pairs to go.

Use up the eggplant from last week. Used the first one for Sunday’s dinner. 2nd one used Fri. lunch. (2 to go!)

Fertilize the lawn. Did the dooryard lawn and the lawn on the street side of the bulb bed. Tues. 4:30 p.m. Lots more to do!

Cull books from one “holding pattern” bookcases. Either they’re out or they stay!, in process Thurs. a.m. (I did the 1st shelf.)

Put family photos in the album. Can’t be done. Photos located, album missing!

Clean off DH’s desk. This is going to be delayed until he and I catch up. I pulled everything from the top drawer on his side of the dresser, we’re still going through all of that.

Today’s 5 is going to be the Weekend’s 5 because. . .

I have the last tag sale tomorrow. I spent this morning doing two things: I made a large batch of lemon-rosemary chicken for lunch, so that tonight’s dinner was taken care of and tomorrow’s too.

I washed clothes for the weekend.

I wrote the other blog and cleaned as I mentioned.

Finally, I went to the antique store, the storage, the consignment shop, the bank and the supermarket. I have paid the storage rent, deposited checks and gotten start cash from the bank, talked to my landlord about what time the tag sale starts (it’s at the antique shop), etc.

I may not have done my Friday 5, but I have been BUSY!

Here’s the 5:

  1. Wipe down the PB & J shelf in the pantry and its contents. Sun. 10/22 10:50 a.m.
  2. Donate unsold yard sale merchandise. Sat. 10/21 3:45 p.m.
  3. Sanitize the water pic.
  4. Use up the eggplant from last week. Used the first one for Sunday’s dinner. (Move to in process.)
  5. Find a place to put away the dehydrator racks and do so when appropriate.

Here’s the remaining backlog:

  • Use up the ice cream base in the freezer.
  • Wash the net curtains.
  • Wipe down the sweeteners and their shelf in the pantry. Sun. 10/22 10:50 a.m.
  • Go thru the record collection, cull.
  • Put garden hoses away for winter.
  • Recaulk the bathroom as needed.
  • Make pepper jelly (or use up the peppers somehow). Mon. 10/23 9:30 a.m.
  • Figure out a new way/place to store the yarn and put it away.
  • Look at the stored snow tires. Need new ones? In the budget?
  • Make cookies with the frozen oatmeal. Recipe found. Oatmeal removed from freezer, put in fridge Tuesday. Tossed Monday, sigh. 10/23
  • Empty my desk, again. Mon 10/23 9:00 a.m.
  • Make up/try the Naval Academy brass polish.
  • Move the longer lumber from the shed so it can be put away in the loft. Done Sunday. 10/22
  • Examine winter coats for flaws, etc.
  • Do the last gather of tag sale materials, last sale is Saturday 10/21 Friday 10/21 all day.
  • Put ice scrapers in the cars, examine and see if they need replacement?

 

This is all too much! It requires an invocation of my patron saint & his mantra:

eveready bunny, keep going


Chores on hold or in process, for whatever reason:

Fertilize the lawn. Did the dooryard lawn and the lawn on the street side of the bulb bed. Tues. 4:30 p.m. Lots more to do!

Cut more sage and other such from the garden. Kale Fri. 10/13, most of the rest of it 10/15. Need to pull some tarragon and that’s it.

Cull books from one “holding pattern” bookcases. Either they’re out or they stay!, in process Thurs. a.m. (I did the 1st shelf.)

Put family photos in the album. Can’t be done. Photos located, album missing!

Clean off DH’s desk. This is going to be delayed until he and I catch up. I pulled everything from the top drawer on his side of the dresser, we’re still going through all of that.