Thursday, June 30, 2011

Day 18: Organize Your Storage Containers

Day 18: Organize Your Storage Containers

Tuesday 24th May
Ooooh, I have to confess, I didn't do this one. I know, very naughty of me!! Because I have Waaaaaaay too much.
This one was to organise your stash of Tupperware and containers - When I say I have too much, I mean TOO MUCH! I just knew in my bones this would take HOURS!
So I totally ignored this one - sorta. What I did do was tidy and organise the boxes (yep, BOXES) of vintage Tupperware I have collected and kinda stacked them a bit tidier in their containers and made them take up as little room on my kitchen floor as possible. I chucked out any non-Tupperware stuff (things seem to just 'migrate' into the containers - thanks kids! lol) and repacked the lids and restacked everything back into itself. Even that took about an hour and I didn't even open the cupboards and do them.... Must call my Organisation Friend and see if she'll take me under her wing and come help me with my Tupperware  .....hmmmmmm
For 'normal' people, I can totally see how this would probably take 5 minutes.

Day 17: Declutter The Kids' Toys

Day 17: Declutter The Kids' Toys

Monday 23rd May
This was a fun one. I try to do this when I have to clean the kids play room. As we have been doing culls in the house, I took pleasure in this one.
Step 2 was a PITA
Step 2: Gather all the kids' toys into one location. (If this alone takes more than 5 minutes it doesn't count!)

Of course not! *insert rolling eyes*

Anyhoo, the basis was two options - One you did yourself, one you did in conjunction with the kids. The first one was obvious - chuck anything busted, doubles, crappy, annoying, that sort of thing. The other was to give the kids a box each and tell them to pick their favorites. Two things - 1-My kids are too young for this - not the authors fault in any way lol, 2-This kinda goes against my parenting ethos (Give them a box, tell them that they have too many toys and that they are giving it to kids who don't have many, then leave them to it. When they are finished, pick out the good stuff for charity and chuck the rest - I don't like to lie to my kids) Apparently, this might take more than 5 minutes, so why don't you toddle off and find something else to do while they do this. Meh. This probably works for most families. I asked Dragonett Lass, but it was too hard for her and she wanted to give the other kids her favorites - she's a giver :)

So, obviously I did it myself. Because of my hoarding, I took a lot longer, but got another couple of bags of toys gone. It was great!

Now won't everyone have more fun with the good stuff that's left?

Totally, 100% agree with this!!!!

Latest Blog By Lisa Barrett

Vexatious Reporting

^^ click the link ^^

Monday, June 20, 2011

Artwork and learny stuff

We have been doing HEAPS of arts and crafts here lately. Dragonett Lass has been writing up a storm = practicing her letters and her sentence structure, that sort of thing. She even wrote her very first, unassisted fully spelt word - so excited!!

lol, I'm aware that it's not a fabulous, genius inspired word, but hey , it's a start! (Oso, for those that don't know, Agent Oso is a Foxtel show) All by her own little mind!! I'm doubly impressed as she was only last week, struggling with her 'S''s, doing them backwards and getting upset that she 'couldn't do them right' - she was SO impressed that she got it 'right' (it only matters to her, we don't feel that pressuring her is the right way to do things. As long as SHE thinks its good, that's all that matters at this age!)

More Practicing

Her Second Word "START" - she knew that she was missing a letter in the middle, but couldn't remember which one until I told her 'A'

See the 'BIOX..." she does that (or very similar) at the start of nearly every piece of paper she does writing on. We don't yet know what it means, but I love that she does it everytime!!

See?? lol

Some Crafty stuff - This is our House

Our Family - complete with belly buttons

Some Tadpoles (We went to the Nature Education Centre and bought some tadpoles)

Would you believe, Dragonett Lass came up to me and showed me her new drawing - A Page of Music!! She had written a page a notes. I have another one that shows 'fast notes' and 'slow notes'. So Cool!!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Tuesday Rummage Sale

Love my Rummage Sale. I haven't been able to go for about 2 weeks due to financial reasons, and did I miss it. I didn't just miss the excitement of What Will I Find? I also missed the connection with the volunteers there. So this week was great fun!

My Pride and Joy! A 3L scale set. Fits nicely away into itself as well..

A tiny dish drying rack for our Camp Box

Now, I know that Dragonett Lass is a little too young for these yet, but we have already started looking at the pictures and descriptions! 

For DragonMumma - An 1968 (reprinted 1982) Readers Digest DIY Manual. Left side covers the "How To" section and the right side covers the actual "Projects"

Check out the fabulous Groovy Illustrations!! Yeah Baby!!

  Got three of these undershelf storage trays! Very Handy!!

Do you know what this is?? A Gold Prospecting Pan! LOL, I find all sorts at the Rummage Sale!

A camp stove for the Camp Box. Other than a new hose, looks in great condition!

And a lockable computer disk box. What would anyone use this for now?? Well, it's going in my pantry (along with a smaller version) and it will hold all my choc chips, boiled lollies, sprinkles, food dyes, all the things my darling little angels like to nick and either eat or spread around (panic making in a rental!!)

Finally, something that made poor DragonPapa throw his hands up and mutter under his breath...

4 wicker baskets!! Always useful, IMO...

 See Ya Next Week

Just adding - My share of the Rummage Sale Bill this week was $12.50 ... So no, I haven't spent a lot of money!! Got some kickass bargains tho!!!

SO much to catch up on.

I have been so focused on blogging my 30 Day Cleaning Challenge, that I have been neglecting the home schooling side of my blog! See what I meant about maybe needing more blogs? rofl - NNNNnnnoooooooo!

Anyway, despite the lack of info on the blog, we have been chuffing along nicely here. I had a bit of a sad when A was talking about being lonely, so we all got together and brainstormed and now A has started (we had been planning this since aggggges ago, but never seemed to have the money/time/teachers, but everything seemed to fall into place at this point in time - Meant To Be!!) Ballet and Violin (Which DragonMumma is seriously considering starting as well) as well as upping the amount we go out. A is now telling us that she is TOO busy and wants to stay home more!! HAHA Can I ever win?? lol

So, Just to give an idea of our outings for a general week ...

Monday - Home Day - Will be starting Gym in the next few weeks (With our Families Best Friends)
Tuesday - (Family Day - DragonPapa Doesn't Work) Rummage Sale (A sometimes comes to this when she wants to) and Violin
Wednesday - (Family Day - DragonPapa Doesn't Work) Cleaning and Family and House stuff, then Ballet (When our wallets aren't so stretched, we will be going to the Central Markets again on Wednesdays)
Thursday - Hanging with friends - A's best girl friend now goes to school, so we catch up every Thursday.
Friday - Playgroup/Natural Learning Meets/ Home Schooling Group Activities then Evening Church
Saturday - Home Day (will Hopefully be changing Ballet to here when they have an opening)
Sunday - (Family Day - DragonPapa doesn't work) Church and Lunches with Extended Families

This doesn't include popping over to friends places, meeting up at play cafes, that sort of thing!  Don't know about the kids, but ** I'm ** exhausted just thinking about all that socialising!!! lol

We have also had to implement a routine for our home days, not for the kids, but for us adults. We are simply not unschooling like the kids - who really don't have anything much to unschool from, heehee.

So our home days tend to go like this ... (barring illness and the like) Keeping in mind, this is very loose, 'ish'ish sort of routine/guidelines.

Breakfast, then cleanup and then free play from 8.30am until 10.30am while DragonMumma does householdy things. Kids always welcome to join in or do their own thing.
10.30am to 12.00pm - Dragonett Lass Time (Dragonett Lad Hopefully asleep)- boardgames, workbooks, Craft, anything she wants. (This is one I try to make happen Every Day as A has requested more DragonMumma and Dragonett Lass time)
12.00pm to 12.30pm - Lunchtime
12.30pm to  1.30pm - Cleaning and DragonMumma time to tidy
1.30pm to 4.30pm - Cooking, Playing, Lots of outside play here if we can - Rabbits, Mushrooms, Castles, walks, bikes, that sort of thing
4.30pm - 6.30pm - Either Picking DragonPapa up from work and/or making dinner then evening routines, which will some day include them going to sleep - rofl.

So here are a few photos of what we have been doing ...

Taking her own photo


Bubble Painting


Waiting (im) patiently

Blowing hole-punch circles

A's first self directed collage

Doing Math in our house

Our Band


Making and Playing Treasure Maps

Craft with our Found Treasure

Doing Workbooks

Our Family

More Drums

Monday, June 13, 2011

Day 16: Organize Your Underwear

Day 16: Organize Your Underwear

I like this one. Only because I have seen my friends underwear drawers and when I worked as a home carer and I can understand people having to clear out such drawers.
This was a nearly pass for me as I regularly toss any uncomfortable underwear, I rarely wear a bra (yep, tuck that away in your Book of Knowledge You Wish You Didn't Know, lol) and I don't have affection for underwear like so many other people seem to. Comes from having a body shape that doesn't allow for sets. SO it was a quick check and chuck my old bras that snuck into the back of the drawer, other than that  - DONE.
Definitely a 5 Minute job, regardless I think.

Day 15: Declutter Your Home Office

Day 15: Declutter Your Home Office

Saturday 21st May

Okay, I got a few passes so I took a few days off, hence the delay here. Here's todays task.
Quickly making your way around your desk, den, study, or home office area...
As we moved our computers out of our 'Office' in the back room and into the Lizard Room (dining/kitchen area) just before we started this Organisation-athon, we only have the two small desks side-by-side. This is also my paperwork area, a bit of a cross over for us due to already having done the paperwork area.

We are to remove any school/college stuff, unused equipment, excess stationery you won't use, knickknacks that provide no meaning, beauty or inspiration (? anyway) unread reading piles you'll never get to - which, let's face it, means most reading piles (this bit C&P due to its slightly snotty tones *insert eyeroll with quirked eyebrow*) books you'll never read (do people really buy books and NOT read them???) Old computer or software manuals, birthday, Christmas and greeting cards - unless they're genuinely special to you (we keep these for our homeschooling/scrapbooking) outdated printers, scanners, fax machines, broken phones, computers, mobiles, etc, abandoned projects and hobbies and the various accompanying supplies, storage containers, old notebooks not needed for reference, old lamps, chairs and other equipment in poor condition, Any item you haven't used in the past 12 months

Anything broken, yucky, tatty, or inconsistent with your standards of professionalism, especially if you work from home.

Another not 5 Minute job here for this list, but for us, already done! Tick!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Day 10 to 14 - Pass Time

Day 10: Organize Your Garage

Okay, this was an easy one for me - We don't have a garage -LOL. We have a carpark area that is open so unable to 'store' anything. Other than rubbish, wheelie-bins, that sort of thing. So a Pass on this one. I can't even comment on anything, as I have never really had a garage in many years.

Day 11: Organize Your Shoes

I don't have shoes, well, enough shoes to warrant a clean-up on them. I own a pair of sneakers, a pair of boots and a few others that already have their own spot. DragonPapa has a pair of sneakers and a pair of work shoes, all in the one spot. They all 'live' in our daystand, in the box at the bottom. The kids have a basket of shoes, that due to kids growing, is cleanout on a daily basis (lol). So another Pass on this one.
Day 12: Declutter Your Car's Glove Box

Another Pass here. This area of the car is kept clean at all times - everytime the car is cleaned, this area is done.
Day 13: Organize Your Pots, Pans and Cookware

Because I have a toddler and a 5yr old and a Hubby that loves to cook, this area (cupboard under the oven) is pulled out every. single. day. this cupboard is stocked with only metal frypans and saucepans (or drums as my kids think) and anything not up to scratch is gone ASAP (if only to lessen the 'drum set'). So another Pass here.

Day 14: Organize Your Paperwork

Now, this one is similar, very similar to Day 5, but giving the whole thing the benefit of the doubt, I read it. Basically, this said to gather all the paperwork from around your home – whether strewn throughout the house, covering every surface of your home office, or assembled in a towering pile. As in Day 5. As my paperwork is all kept on my computer desk, this task was already done and maintained, so Pass on this one as well.

Day 9: Organize Your Laundry

Day 9: Organize Your Laundry

Tuesday 17th May
Okay, This email was a big one, so I have taken the liberty of doing a cut and pastey type of thing which I don't like doing, but the email was too big for me to summarize.
Get a large bag. Quickly scanning your laundry shelves and benches, throw into the bag:

Old paint cans, tiles, etc
Decrepit brooms, dustpans, cleaning equipment
Cleaning supplies you don't use
Empty bottles of laundry detergent, fabric softener, etc
Tatty baskets and hampers
Broken irons, ironing boards, etc
Anything moldy, mildewed, or yucky.

Step 2: Pop your bag into the trash.

Step 3: Remove anything from the laundry that should be stored elsewhere - eg:

Car-related stuff -> in the garage
Random clothes -> in the closet
Spare paper towels -> in the pantry
Spare bulbs -> in the hall closet
Towels -> in the linen closet; etc.

Step 4: Do a quick tidy of your laundry shelves.

And you're done!

Okay, as a 5 minute task, I can't see this happening. Very Nearly Almost, but not quite.

As we don't have shelves in our laundry, we had a washing basket and lidded box. I simply threw out the entire washing basket - paint, scotchguard, old cat food boxes, shoe polish, as we hadn't used any of them in ages (years even?). Step Two of course is the time killer here. Regardless, I then spent the rest of the evening sorting and vacuuming and mopping the laundry floor and walls. Other than a very nasty incident with a bad slip/fall, a smashed vintage glass bowl, a huntsman spider and a temper tantrum, nothing left to do but to replace some tap handles and get DragonPapa to pull out the five boxes of clothes (yep, 5 more boxes of freaking clothes!!) that have been there since we moved in and empty them for me (spiders *shudder*) .....

.... we'll see if that happens - LOL

Day 8 - Organize Your Linen Closet

Day 8 - Organize Your Linen Closet
Monday 16th May

Okay, now I get that many people have full to bursting linen cupboards, this is me!! (some people don't even get the luxury of a linen cupboards! lol) but do people really have the following in their clean linen cupboards?

Moving quickly from top left to bottom right, toss out any:

Sheets and pillowcases that are old, stained or tatty
Towels that are old, stained or tatty
Tablecloths that are old, stained or tatty
Napery that is old, stained or tatty
Blankets that are old, stained or tatty
Quilts that are old, stained or tatty

Bed linen, table linen and towels that are surplus to your general needs (allow for guests and keep a couple of old towels for spills and leaks).

Hoarder that I am, even I don't have tatty, stained or visibly old linen. But hey, that's me. I wish I could have shown a photo of what my linen cupboard was like before, but I missed that narrow window of time. LOL
I opened the doors to start, thought, 'Oh, I could take a photo (not something I often remember) and blog this one' so I trotted off to get the camera. On the way back, the phone rang, then someone knocked at the door, child asked for a drink, drink promptly ended up on the floor, snacks made and put out, called the kids ... no answer ... called again ... hear giggling, so I follow and this was what I found ...

The kids were IN the cupboard (evidenced by the torn lining), having the time of their lives, but my over-crammed linen cupboard now all over the floor! 

So it took a day to actually get the energy up to tackle this now huge task and what was 'supposed' to be a 5 minute job - can I take the time here to say, another 'not possible' task to do in 5 minutes - even my mother's linen cupboard, by which all standards are held to, would take more than 5 minutes - not much, but definitely more - turned into a job of 3 hours. Sad fact is, my compulsions meant that many of the linen items had to be rewashed or I was not at all comfy putting it back in.

But, here's the almost finished result. I have a few more bags of linen needing to be dealt with and a load or two still waiting exportation from the Laundry Region, but this is the nearly finished product. I threw out two bags- ie, doona covers I don't like anymore as I have too many, matching pillowcases, sized 'double' anything - left over from my single days (been married for 8yrs, moved 5 times - HOARDER! lol), fabric I was saving for sewing that I didn't want anymore, that sort of thing.

Now, I must add, this is only my Linen Cupboard, not my Towel Cupboard (now also my tablecloth and napkin cupboard). But that's another post for another day...

Give a Friend a Hand!!

If you weren't aware by now, my dear friend and our beloved homebirth midwife Lisa Barrett is going through a bit of a tough time right now.

Please, if you can spare even a few dollars, please consider donating to this wonderful caring woman, to help her pay court costs of defending women and families everywhere here in Australia.

Donation button up on the right there in the link.

Every little bit helps!!

Dip that hand in and send what you can!

Thanks and Blessings.

Friday, June 10, 2011

Thursday, June 9, 2011

A Quiz - Who is Who?

I have a quick quiz today - my internet was shaped so I haven't been able to even look at my blog, let alone post lately - but as I got back on today, I felt this needed to be asked.

There are two groups of people. We'll call them Group A and Group B. Both groups are drawn together into their groups by common beliefs. Both exist in a Major Capital City, with substantial interstate connections.

Group A - Small, spread out, mainly online, regular meet-ups

Group B - Very Large, close together, IRL connections, regular meet-ups

Here's the quiz -

Group A regularly supports its members and their friends, They regularly supply meals, for their members and friends. This support happens with no formal organisations assistance, simply an online message board and phone tree. No questions, no judgements, simply an honest willingness to help their members. Any member, for what ever reason, can put out a call and will receive days/weeks of ready made meals, all healthy, free and even taking into consideration the various and many different dietary needs - which today, is very widespread. All the members generally participate in this Meal Bank, with no complaints, no hesitation, and regularly, no notice of time - immediate need is addressed. Many of the members are on limited incomes of a sort, but still are able to pull a meal out if needed.

Group B also regularly supplies meals to its members and their friends. This support happens also with no formal organisations assistance, simply a phone tree. The organisers do this with an honest willingness to help their members. Anyone, for whatever reason, can call and request assistance. The organisers will call around and find someone who can fill that need. Barely a handful of members participate in this Meal Bank. Some have even requested to be removed from the phone tree. Others have stipulations on who they will make meals for (not what meals). Many of the members are on good incomes to quite comfortable incomes, but are unable to pull a meal out even if desperately needed.

Which do You think is the Christian Group and which do YOU think is the Mixed Group - athetists, agnostic, pagan, buddist, ex-religion members?