Category Archives: status

Friday’s Five & Backlog

I did something which shows me how things are different these days. Yesterday I gave away brand new packages of lunch bags and staples, to two different businesses. The lunch bags were given to an antique store who uses them to wrap china and glassware. The staples were given to the antique store where I have a booth.

In both cases, I have more than I think I’ll use in a reasonable time, without them.

I use about 1/2 package of lunch bags a year for drying herbs/spices. (And I reuse them sometimes too.) I had come to the end of a package and bought some, thinking I was out. When I went to put it away, there was another new package! I sure didn’t need another 50!

The box of staples came from a box of shop office supplies. I thought I’d folded in or deleted extras from the shop’s supplies long ago, but I found a box a few months back filled with labels (mostly tossed), the box of staples, and a few miscellaneous pieces. When I cleaned office shelves last week or so, I realized we had 2 complete boxes of staples, more than we’d likely need until oh 2050. I don’t expect to be alive or wanting staples by then anyway!

Previously, I would have kept them; in fact I did. These days? They’re clutter I can get rid of easily, and that’s great!

Friday’s Five:

  1. Find something to do with the extra eggs.
  2. Make pepper jelly.
  3. Figure out a new way/place to store the yarn and put it away.
  4. Look at the stored snow tires. Need new ones? In the budget?
  5. Make cookies with the frozen oatmeal.

Much of this is dealing with food, obviously. Partly because farm day was yesterday. But it’s partly because the other chores in/out are so far behind. I have to cook no matter what else happens most of the time, so this is an “easy” way to get the list pared down. If it’s a cheat, it is — sue me!

BACKLOG:

Thursday:

  • Empty my desk, again.
  • 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.
  • Make up/try the Naval Academy brass polish.

Wednesday:

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

Finish laundry room clean up.

Tuesday:

  • Weed the brick path around the veggie garden, edge it. in process, 1st quarter done 1:30 Fri., 2nd quarter and 1/2 the 3rd done Sunday.
  • Move the lumber which needs it from the shed so it can be put away in the loft.
  • Work on grading the last pile of dirt.Fri. 1 p.m.

Monday:

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

Friday:

  • Examine winter coats for flaws, etc.
  • Do the last gather of flea market materials, last market is Saturday 10/14 date changed to 10/21

Thursday:

  • Put ice scrapers in the cars, examine and see if they need replacement?
  • Ship the box to the BIL, make up more boxes of things which should be shipped and get them sent! I think I did this, although I’m not sure. I cannot find the box anywhere!!!

Monday’s Backlog:

  • Clear stuff from my car and run a vac through at least part of it!.
Advertisements

New Ideas About Cleaning

Aside from the PTSD, bad habits and panic attacks, as if that wasn’t enough, I’ve had one other major problem about cleaning up the house. No one ever taught me how! This means that no one ever showed me the “right” order to do things. I was taught at boarding school how to make a bed, clean a toilet or trash can, but not how to make a schedule or plan to cover the basics, regularly.

And, I admit, that doing anything regularly wouldn’t have happened anyway, because of the panic attacks. Cleaning is like writing a novel or any other longer piece, you have to keep slogging away at it I’ve found. Difficult for me, if not impossible for much of my life.

That said, I have discovered a few things:

  1. Always clean more than you have to. That is, if the dishes are done and you have 1 item in the sink, find a candlestick or decorative something to clean too. This also applies to sweeping the kitchen, putting clothes away, whatever. Especially if the chores aren’t involved or big, add something minor. Cleaning the bath counter? Wipe down the box on the shelf, etc. etc. etc.
  2. Hard surfaces, impervious to water are the easiest to clean; where soft surfaces, which absorb water are the hardest.
  3. Clean the areas used the most more than others.
  4. Clean the most obvious areas first. (I have [had?] a tendency to clean closets and drawers when the urge to clean hit me. Before I realized the clutter was what I needed to feel safe, it was dumbfounding to me that I could spend a whole day cleaning and you couldn’t tell. This is, of course, backwards from the way most people work. And that’s the reason why those “toss this” lists really didn’t work for me.
  5. Find whatever works for you and run with it. I spent DECADES trying to use flylady or other cleaning plans, and couldn’t.  This caused more of the internal I’m stupid, flawed, and just screwed up mantra.  I figured “Of course this doesn’t work for me and it does for Mary or Jo. It’s me after all.” I finally accepted that I couldn’t adopt someone else’s plans, I had to come up with my own — in my 60s!

Tuesday’s Five & the Backlog

 

Tuesday’s Five:

  1. Weed the brick path around the veggie garden, edge it.
  2. Move the lumber which needs it from the shed so it can be put away in the loft.
  3. Clean another section of the sun room’s quarry tile. 7:30 p.m.
  4. Sweep the front door landing (outside).
  5. Work on grading the last pile of dirt.

Monday’s Backlog:

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

Work on maintenance: desk/bath counter and new cleaning: laundry. Bath done noon, Tues. desk done 6:00 p.m. Tues.

Friday:

  • Examine winter coats for flaws, etc.
  • Clear off the dining room table again. In process. More work done Sun., but not complete! More work Tues.
  • Do the last gather of flea market materials, last market is a week from tomorrow.
  • Work on the household journal.Weds. 11:30 a.m.

Thurday:

  • Put ice scrapers in the cars, examine and see if they need replacement?
  • Ship the box to the BIL, make up more boxes of things which should be shipped and get them sent!

Wednesday:

  • Organize/Cull the cleaning products

Monday’s Backlog:

  • Clear stuff from my car and run a vac through at least part of it!
  • Work on the fabric storage again: cull and neaten.
  • Move the paint as DH and I discussed.

What’s not on this list: 4 or 5 loads of dishes, peppers steamed and frozen, recipe ready. Other peppers chopped and frozen. Roasted a chicken with veggies for lunch. Picked and sorted the chicken bits at dinner: carcass to stock making, picked meat some of it for dinner, veggies + stock + flour, milk, and seasoning = chicken goulash (dinner). DH put away the food after dinner, I did another load of dishes. Three loads of laundry, put the comforter back into the duvet. Took the cat to the vet. Went to the hardware store. Bought gas. Deleted about 1,000 unread promotional emails. Pulled a replacement crock out of the attic and some books to sell. Forgot! Tutored my student too.

 

Unexpected Consequences or Catsequences … ?

What did I do today? Not deal with most of my list. However, the bathroom, the smallest room in the house is much cleaner, I hesitate to say it, but it IS clean.

I put vinegar/baking soda down the tub drain this morning and the tub’s plug stopped working. It had been weird and difficult for years, but it just quit.

So, I took it apart, discovered the part was indeed broken. DH had a replacement and I did my first plumbing repair. Hurrah! In the process, I cleaned the hair out of the tub’s drain, cleaned all around, put a small amount of grease on the socket/ball which is the  lever, etc.

Afterwards, I cleaned the tub, of course.

Then I looked down and although I’d cleaned the tub side of the toilet last week, I’d never finished the other side.

It rained this morning. When it precipitates and isn’t freezing, we get ants in the bathroom. I looked at the “clean” side of the toilet, and there’s an ant trail . . . Sigh. So, I cleaned BOTH sides, the back, the floor, etc. everything, with alcohol. No more ant trail for them to follow, they’ll have to start fresh. (The plan is that I will also renew the caulk around the toilet, but that hasn’t happened just yet.)

Then i tackled the sink. Now the sink, like every horizontal surface here rarely stays empty. It wasn’t. Papers, change, a bottle of glue (?), old computer disks, a book, etc. But even when it’s empty, it doesn’t stay looking nice and it has nothing to do with the HUMANS who use it to wash their hands, shave, etc.

The little cat likes “bodies” of water. The first time she decided to visit me in the tub was quite a shock. Here’s this little black kitten, trying really hard to just lap my bath water (with me in it mind) and not fall at the same time. Felt rather like I’d been visited by a lip smacking cannibal. . . .

My old cat, before someone did something awful to her (chase her with a hose I think) with water, was the only cat I’ve ever known who was completely unafraid of water. She’d sit on my chest, purring, tail dipped in my bath water, knowing she was safe because she was with the human.  After the person did whatever it was they did to traumatize her, she would come in miaowing in great distress, if I stayed in the tub too long. (I have a bad back, soaking in a hot tub works when my back goes out!)

The new little cat, who likes tub water? Well, the solution was that we put Starbucks mug on the counter and that’s her primary water bowl (although of course there’s one with her food dish in the kitchen). She prefers the mug, and  that means there’s little black paw prints, from both cats, all around the sink, almost daily.

Add the iron in the water which makes anything which was cleaned > 2 hours ago look like it has never been cleaned? and you have the reason I gave up long ago trying to make the bathroom look good. If we use it? It looks like I never clean it.

It’s the smallest room in the house, one of the easiest to clean, and I have to make myself clean it regularly, because it just makes me depressed. No matter what I do, it looks like it hasn’t been cleaned in a week or more. Even when that is patently NOT true.

 

Friday’s 5 and Backlog. . . .

Friday’s Five:

  1. Examine winter coats for flaws, etc.
  2. Clear off the dining room table again. In process.
  3. Do the last gather of flea market materials, last market is a week from tomorrow.
  4. Work on the household journal.
  5. Strip the bed and replace the down comforter under the sheets so that it can be washed sometime this week. Done Friday, forgot to note it at the time! The comforter which was pulled off still needs to be cleaned and then replaced.

Thurday’s Backlog

  • Put ice scrapers in the cars, examine and see if they need replacement?
  • Ship the box to the BIL, make up more boxes of things which should be shipped and get them sent!

Wednesday’s Backlog

  • Organize/Cull the cleaning products

Tuesday’s Backlog:

  • Get lumber stored correctly for winter, where storage is available. Sat. noon
  • Clean the quarry tile in the sunroom. Sun., forgot to note the time!

Monday’s Backlog:

  • Clear stuff from my car and run a vac through at least part of it!
  • Work on the fabric storage again: cull and neaten.
  • Move the paint as DH and I discussed.
  • Clean out the underdeck storage. Sun. 6 p.m.

 

 

Tues. 9/26 Five, with one left over

  1. Work on the wood piles (also on to do list).
  2. Change the sheets. Examine the flannel sheets to see if any need to be purchased! 9:50 a.m.
  3. Put out the grass seed on the north side and cover with landscape cloth, as planned.1st piece graded, composted, watered, and cloth put down. 4:50 p.m.
  4. Reorganize the linen closet.10 a.m. also culled the sheets, top/bottom and pillow cases. Yay — less clutter!
  5. Inventory vinegars: do we have enough cleaning vinegar and other types? Any which need to be discarded? (Unlikely.) 2:30 p.m.
  6. Work on the Christmas ornaments again, now that I have pins! (Couldn’t find mine last week.) 1:30 p.m.

Also: did a partial cleaning of the bath yesterday, that should be finished today.

Tomorrow is dump day, so any prep for doing a major cull or starting one will be to my benefit tomorrow!

The sheet cull generated a pile of too small sheets to be sold, turned into rags or sewn together so that they’re big enough. What will happen to them will be determined by their fabric content and “hand.” 11:15 a.m.

Friday’s Five, Actually, It’s 12!

Here’s my new list of things to do today:

  1. Tidy needlework supplies and equipment.
  2. Find a new home for the puzzles (displaced when the Hoosier was sent for sale). Done 6:00 p.m.
  3. Put away summer weight coats. (It’s the first day of fall, yes?)
  4. Dust a shelf in the office.10:47 a.m.
  5. Box  yard sale items up for the last sale or put in the dump bin (to donate).11:30 a.m.

What’s left from earlier this week:

  1. Deal with mail
  2. Work on the wood piles (also on the to do list).
  3. Update grain storage: review/cull, clean containers, etc. A tiny piece of this was done as part of clearing the kitchen counter. Weds. 10 a.m.
  4. Prep for the Christmas ornaments I’m making. Finished Friday. Now all I have to do is finalize the assembly!
  5. Dust the stained glass. Done 11:40 Friday
  6. Finish the salsa started Thursday.It was finished, except a small amount needed a container. Done! Friday 11:14
  7. Work on the house notebook.