Posted in Day in the life of a mom, DIY, Mental Health

How this Perpetually Late “Hot Mess Mama” Got it Together

From Defeat to

When it was just me back in the day rushing to college classes, it wasn’t that big of a deal.  As long as I wasn’t the last one there, I wasn’t too flustered. But when I had kids, it became completely apparent to me and everyone else.  I was a hot mess.  My friend even gave me a mug with “hot mess mama” written on it.  I laughed when I read it, knowing it was spot on.

(The definition for hot mess is “A person or thing that is spectacularly unsuccessful or disordered, especially one that is a source of peculiar fascination.”)

Life seemed like a breeze to the other moms and there I was…constantly, obviously frazzled. Always late. Defeated.  (Granted, I was in the midst of postpartum adjustment disorder and later hormone health struggles, but that’s another story).

 I had to get it together.  But what was “it”? And how could I get it?

I went looking for answers. Some people get life coaches or mentors…Neither was an option for me at the time, so I discovered Michael Hyatt’s resources. (His audio book Your Best Year Ever is a good place to start if you’re interested.) Michael Hyatt is a success coach and productivity expert.  My overall takeaway from his material is that good time management is basically good self-management, and that is a learned skill.  I didn’t have to be a hot mess mama forever!!  There was hope for improvement if I just applied myself to learning how!

I then read books like Crystal Paine’s Say Goodbye to Survival Mode and other books on organization and productivity, and listened to podcasts or watched Youtube videos on the topics as well.  One guy named Robin Sharma talks about what he calls the “5 a.m. Club,” or being part of the few in the world who put their “mind over mattress” and start their days at 5 a.m., a habit of highly successful people.

So my first goal to get it together was to become a morning personI’d previously believed you innately either were or you weren’t, and I sure wasn’t. (Especially struggling with insomnia, if I was sleeping soundly in the morning, don’t anybody dare wake me up before I have to!  My kids would often jar me awake with their clamoring to get to me.  Which meant I was starting to resent them.  Not good.)

How could I wake up on my own without a dreadful blaring alarm putting me in an awful mood?  A friend who also struggled with sleep issues told me about her wake up light alarm clock, which helps balance your circadian rhythm.  I talked my hubby into getting one for us and I credit it with a less stressful morning routine.  Now I wake up with the gradually increasing light and am out of bed happily before the music ever even plays!

With my morning uninterrupted by kids and distractions (no facebooking allowed in the morning…productivity stealers banned for the first several hours of my day!), my second goal to get it together was daily planning in a productivity journal.  This is essential for me as a homemaker to have direction because a homemaker’s work is never done.  Dishes and laundry and the house get dirty every single day.  But if I have a clear idea of what TODAY’s workload is, I won’t feel overwhelmed by its continual recurrence.

I write my top 3 main goals for the day and any appointments and times so I can see the layout of my day.  (Anything else is more flexible and can roll over to the next day’s list.) I started out doing this in the morning, but later preferred to plan the night before, so my morning was solid productivity (after walking the dog).  Either way was an improvement.

My third big step to get it together was improving my timeliness I’ve joked I have “time passage awareness disorder” like Noni from A Slob comes Clean, so setting a timer, alarm, or reminder for my phone and using google calendar (which gives) has done wonders to keep me from scrambling last minute.  If mommy’s less stressed, kids are less stressed.

My latest application of this is putting the library renewal or return date on my phone…because I just paid $16 in overdue fines last month.  Ugh.  So I’m still in progress.  But let me tell you what, I am so glad I don’t feel like a hot mess mama all the time anymore!

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Posted in Mental Health, minimalism, saving money

My Inner Hoarder can’t Let Go

Yesterday I was prepping for guests, making the bed, and as I put the pale sage fitted sheet on the queen bed I noticed how worn out the fabric was looking.  (That was right after I found that not one, not two, but three of our pillow cases had tiny holes in them. )Screen Shot 2019-08-12 at 5.41.09 AM.png

All of our sheet sets are probably 10 years old, gotten when we married.  Not only were they just worn from age, but this particular fitted sheet had a color-removed stain on it.  (I’d say bleach but I don’t use bleach).

Hmmm, not quite something you’d be delighted to sleep on if you were a guest, eh?  So I swiped the sheet back off and took it up to my hubby, and asked if we should just keep these for use on our own bed.  After all, people can still sleep on a stain, right?  Isn’t it wasteful to throw it away?  Then my hubby asked, “Being wasteful to toss it? Or…Hoarding?”

I kind of wanted him to say, “Eh, no big deal, we can use them on our bed.  It’s good to have second set of flannel sheets anyhow!”  That would have made it easy.  I could have put them away and been content.  But no.  He had to point out that it was decision time.

 He’s the original minimalist in our family, y’all.  Like when I met him he had an entire house and no furniture other than dining table, computer/office chairs, and an air mattress.  So his “what we need” opinion is whack, right?!

Guys, it’s like I have a bag lady on one shoulder and a monk on another or some such ridiculousness going on in my head.  Bag Lady says “Don’t waste anything!” and Monk says, “You need little to be happy.”  And their opposing viewpoints make it so not-zen in my noggin!

So while my little shoulder peeps were arguing, I dug out my circular cutter and cutting mat and made a deal with myself.  I could not bring myself to throwing the sheet away.  It’s not good enough to donate, but I still felt it was useful, ya know?! So I struck a bargain.  I could spare myself the guilt (yes, that is what I experience) of throwing away something useful if I made it into something else useful–disposable cleaning rags.

(Because I could throw them away after cleaning the bathroom and not feel guilty.  Somehow vastly different if I threw the sheet away bit by bit rather than all at once.)  But ONLY IF I cut the sheet into rags RIGHT AWAY. Clutter is delayed decisions! (I’ve learned a few things in my time. Thanks, Clutter Fairy on Youtube!)

So zip zoom, that rotary cutter took 5 minutes.  (I would NOT have agreed to this deal if I had to use fabric scissors–too tedious, and would likely have been tucking the sheets in a far corner of a drawer, telling myself they will be useful as painting drop cloths, and forgetting about them.)

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So I shoved those new disposable bathroom rags in the sink cabinet and went back to realize…Dang.  There’s that top sheet.  Ugh.  I do NOT want to cut another whole queen sized sheet.  But I couldn’t toss it, so I wadded it up in my vintage Hoarder Mary Poppins’  Bag of Delayed Obligations (filled with “fix-it-eventually-maybe-because-I-can’t-bring-myself-to-toss-it items).  I love the bag but hate looking in it.  It is always full.  Because I’m a hoarder of stuff that’s “still useful” but not nice enough to give away or donate.

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Anybody know how to make me less attached to stuff like this?  Send help.  And new sheets, please.  (Just kidding, I do like shopping. But they are expensive aren’t they?  Have you noticed you have to get at least 400 thread count for them to last well?  Ten years is a good run, eh?)

*Disclaimer: Amazon affiliate links are sometimes used in my posts to share products I love and think you may also enjoy. That means at no extra cost to you, I may earn a commission from any purchases you make through the links, and that helps support my blog and is much appreciated.

 

Posted in Mental Health, minimalism, Uncategorized

Reading, Decluttering, and Craft Rooms make me Happy…Eve Schaub Combines them All!

Did you pick up Marie Kondo’s book The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, only to toss it on your pile of stuff and think “That Konmarie method’s not for me”? Don’t let life and your mess overwhelm you.  Chill out, read THIS book instead, and get motivated because you’re not alone!

You’re not the only messy missy out there, and we can conquer our clutter together!  I get it! If you’re a “saver” (or admitted borderline hoarder, possibly) like me and Eve Schaub, the author of one of my favorite books which I highlight in this video, it can be an uphill battle…because we have LOTS of stuff. (Ok, maybe our hill is a MOUNTAIN of stuff!) Feel the camaraderie–savers unite! Let’s fight the battle of the bulging closed-door room!

You can find this awesome book , Year of No Clutter—a Memoir by Eve Schaub
at (*affiliate links to follow–see disclosure below) https://amzn.to/31eQZai .

Nothing can stop us now!  And maybe one day we’ll consider minimalism…

* Disclosure: My site contains affiliate links, which means at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission that will help support this channel if you decide to make a purchase after clicking through the link. I share the links though for your ease and to offer resources that I personally found beneficial in my life and goals, and would love for you to have a similar positive experience with them.

Posted in Day in the life of a mom, DIY, Mental Health, minimalism, Uncategorized

How Minimalism Helped my Mind

Overwhelmed.  Distracted.  Discontent with status quo. Disgusted with myself and my inability to get organized. All that is how I felt a few years ago in the depth of my anxiety and discouragement with where my life was.  It just couldn’t stay that way.  I couldn’t stay that way.

I contemplated getting a professional organizer.  That would hurt the budget bigtime.  So I decided to start thinking like an organizer.  I started watching Lori Marrero videos on youtube.  Then I discovered Clutterbug, Clutter Fairy, and A Slob Comes Clean.  (That last one made me go, Nony the Slob is SO ME!).  I realized you can’t keep organizing if your space is too small for your stuff.

Enter Minimalism.  I dove in, and this was the last holdout: my craft room.  The room I’d close the door to when guests came over.  The room for a good portion of the time I couldn’t even walk in.  The dumping ground for completed project supplies and the graveyard for creative dreams I couldn’t achieve because I cringed at the idea of going in there.

My craft room was the place first place that made me want to get organized and declutter, and yet it was the last place I conquered in my home because I felt SO OVERWHELMED by it!

Check out my journey and how Minimalism helped this momma’s mind!