Organization Day 5: The Walk Through

My officeWell today I thought it was time to touch base on a common statement that occurs in my home every single day… The Walk Through. “What is a walk through?” you ask. Well, it is the next step in my organization series.

The walk through is a very basic concept that I believe most of us do everyday, but never really had a name for it.  It’s easy to apply to our daily schedules and routines and it’s one that children can completely understand. The walk through is simply going through a room and picking up everything that is out-of-place AND putting it away where it belongs.  Simply eh?

In the next post we’ll learn what Zonal Cleaning is and how to apply the walk through in it.

It’s been said that if you do something consistently for thirty days, it’ll become a habit or a routine~ that works with good or bad  stuff, so be careful!  I’ve incorporated this aspect into our daily lives over the last ten years and now it’s just a normal part of cleaning up for me and my children.

Here are a few tips when going through this step in the organizational process of getting your home where you want it to be:

Basket and bag for walk through

*Each time a walk through is done, take a plastic bag and basket along with you. You’ll use the bag for trash and the basket for items that need to be put back in their proper place.

*As you go through, it’s best to start from the top down. For example table tops, book or other shelves, couches and chairs and then onto the floor. Be sure to look under the furniture. Gather up what needs to be put away in the basket, put trash in the bag.

*While you’re doing your walk through straighten things up as you go, fix haphazard cushions, re-fold any throw blankets, straighten pictures on the wall, tidy books and magazines on tables in the room as well as on the shelves, straighten any decorative objects or table clothes/ linens.

Once you’ve completed the walk through, I suggest you vacuum or sweep the floor. That gives the finished look!

The walk through is not ‘cleaning’ day, it’s something that should be done repeatedly through the day and especially right before bed. Vacuuming only once unless needed more.

I focus on three daily walk throughs- right before lunch- this is when we typically vacuum, just before supper (or just before dad gets home from work) and then before bed. There is nothing nicer then getting up in the morning and coming down to a tidy house!

Keep posted for my next topic in my organization series: Zonal Cleaning.

Happy Day,
Jean

Organization Series Day 1: Creating and Maintaining Routines

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I’m all about routines, lists and general organization. I wear several different hats: Wife, mother, writer, organic farmer/ gardener and winter farmers market Manager/ Owner, to name a few 😉

Up until recently I also operated a fifty member CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) share program on our farm which was a type of co-op. I organized and scheduled several farmers crops along with our own two acres according to our needs. I also attended a weekly farmers market. Our farm had several wholesale restaurant accounts where we sold specialty sausages, eggs, other meat products and produce.

Our farm raised both hogs and poultry for meat and eggs.  We also have an on-farm butcher shop. Cut flowers for bouquets was another branch on our tree.

Not to mention I write two personal blogs, the one you are reading and Wren In The Willows http://wreninthewillows.com/2013/10/28/irony/

I contribute weekly to The Detroit News, The Good Life blog http://blogs.detroitnews.com/thegoodlife/2013/10/17/how-to-incorporate-herbs-into-your-table-decor/#comments

More recently contributing weekly to “Your Home with Karie Engels” http://yourhomewithkarieengels.com/2013/10/24/how-to-create-a-friendship-garden/ and “Farm to Table, Field to Plate.”http://outdoorsexperiencejournal.wordpress.com/2013/10/17/kitchen-gardens-tips-and-ideas-on-how-to-create-your-own/

I also have a new cookbook and gardening book in the works.

I’m currently working on a new Food Co-op project at one of Michigan’s oldest nursery/ greenhouses. Besides the co-op, we’re working at creating a community garden as well as a farmers market there in the next few years.

On top of this and several other things I didn’t mention, I am a mom. My youngest children are six and three years old. They require much of my attention. Encouraging them to help and work along my side is part of the process as well. I couldn’t do all I do without the help of my children.

Being mommy is the most important of my ‘hats’ and it requires the most energy and thought. It would be very easy for me to get side-tracked and neglect them. That is why I do much of my writing and computer work ‘after-hours’.  Knowing my limitations helps to me stay focused and organized. I know where to dry the line and not over-extend myself. I know when to say ‘no’ to a project that just doesn’t fit into my life.

To the point… I have a lot to organize and my time must be scheduled accordingly. I don’t have time to diddle-daddle or fly by the seat of my pants . Every minute is precious and must be used wisely.  I plan on a daily, weekly, monthly and seasonal agenda according to what project is at hand.

Over the next month I’m going to help you get your life organized by teaching you how to set and maintain routines. Routines are the key to success in life and when you have a plan of action written down to visually see, you will succeed!

There are many benefits to creating routines which include keeping yourself organized, scheduled and on track. You’ll be able to create daily, weekly, monthly and seasonal routines that will be geared toward your life and what is happening with you and your family.

Today lets look at the first important element in creating a happy organized life!

Creating and Maintaining Routines

How do I create routines?

*First, think about yourself and your needs.

*Next you’ll make a list.  Get a notepad and write down what you’d like to accomplish in your home over the next week and through the current month.  Remember to start small and don’t worry about trying to organize the list right now, you’ll do that later. Right now just focus on brain storming and write down everything you think of no matter how large or small the task.

*Write down your normal household chores, for example, laundry, cleaning out the fridge, etc. If you do any of these chores on regular days, jot that down too.

*Now make a list of your appointments for the current week and month in your notebook. Include yours, your spouses and your children.

Now that you have all the basics down, you’ll be able to create routines for everyday of the week and organize your time through the year.

The next step is my favorite! P.M.S.~ This is not going to be what you think…and this is for the next day, so keep posted!

How do I maintain my routines?

Like anything else, once things become a habit it’s much more likely that you’ll continue to do them. Routines are no different. By doing your routines on a daily, weekly and monthly basis, they’ll become second nature to you!

I also have my routines for each day of the week written down in a journal. I use to keep it open on the counter during the day so everyone could see it freely, although over the years I’ve drifted from this simply because they really have become habits.

Until then, here is a sample of my Morning routine.

MORNING ROUTINE- School days

“She riseth while it is yet night and giveth meat to her household…” Proverbs 31:15a

This would be during the school season. I have a different one for our summer schedule.

•5:50am~ Rise and shine with smile and praise in my heart and get the coffee brewing!

•Swish toilet and sink; get a load of laundry together to throw in.

•Brush my teeth; get a quick shower; put lotions on; get dressed.

•Have some quiet time with the Lord and a warm cup of coffee…

•Check email/messages;  send any responses that need done.

•7:00am~ start waking the rest of the clan up… get breakfast going.

•Throw load of laundry in.

•7:30am~ everyone at table for breakfast; family devotions

•7:55am- Clearing off table; wash breakfast dishes; switch laundry loads.

•8:10am~ Get children off to school.

  • 9:00 am- Think about my day; make list’s for jobs to be done; check my day planner

•Check menu~ take anything that has to thaw out of the freezer; make sure we have all ingredients for the menu.

Next we’ll look at P.M.S. and how wonderful it is!

If you missed Day 1 follow this link to see the schedule of topic posts!
https://fordragonfliesandme.com/2013/10/29/new-organization-series/

Happy Day,
Jean