I wrote way back in March about trying to find a new household rhythm, especially in my housework, now that Mal is born and our family dynamic is completely different. It was also a Spring thing, I always want to reassess my household routines in the Spring. And it seems to be going around because since then I've had a ton of friends bring up their own housework and family routines, or lack thereof. Especially in the blogosphere. Ivory blogged about her new housework routine here. Stephanie about hers here. Kim has been blogging for weeks about her housecleaning funk (I'm the lovely friend she mentions, the ones that tells her to "get over it"...yeah, I'm a great friend like that.) Mary has unveiled the new Gardening Section of her housekeeping notebook.
I, also, have a Fly Lady-style housekeeping notebook. What can I say? I just love that Fly Lady. She is a woman after my own OCD heart. And though my notebook is mid-revamp (I think it will always be mid-revamp as my needs change and grow, and also as Target releases adorable Liberty of London file folders)....Sorry dozed off into a daydream about how much I love the Liberty of London for Target line. Anyways, I thought I'd share my notebook, unfinished as it is. The first section contains Household Routines. I started making it more "2-baby" as Zeke calls our family back in March, and now that its been implemented for a few week I feel confident in it.
*click to enlarge* (Blogger doesnt allow the uploading of pdfs, how lame is that? So I was forced to take screen shots. I HAVE all this in pdf however, so if you want just holler and I'll email them to you, Im all about sharing my obsessiveness)
The biggest changes from what I did before are 1. I do laundry every day now as part of my regular morning routine. Josh and I used to do laundry together over the weekend but now there is just far faar too much of it to handle in one day. Babies make more laundry then you can imagine. 2. I have a designated baking day now (it replaced laundry day). Its nice to make all the bread and desserts and muffins and snacks ect that we'll need for the week in one day, the ingredients are already out and cleanup is done once. I usually end up making some sort of dinner bread (pizza dough or french loaf or rolls ect), 1 or 2 loaves of sandwhich bread, some sort of dessert, and some sort of snack food. I also make cleaners on this day, when we are out. Or playdough.
And I think its important to note that this schedule is an ideal. Its not always what happens. Sometimes I dont get around to my zone cleaning and it gets picked up on my Friday catch-up day. Sometimes it doesnt even get picked up then and just waits for the next week to roll around. Often my evening cleaning gets done the next morning because Im tired and dont feel like doing dinner dishes, even oftener clean laundry piles up during the week and gets folded Friday (how I love my catch up day). Sometimes none of it gets done and when Josh comes home from work he finds all 3 of us in pajamas and the house in shambles and I promise to love him forever if he will make us omelets for dinner (and sometimes he says I have to love him forever either way, but he always makes the omelets).
The quarterly routine chores get done usually on those blessed catch up Fridays, or when I'm on a strange cleaning kick, or if I've gotten everything done for the day early. I cross them off as I go, with the goal of having them all finished by the season's change. I also am trying to start to implement seasonal chores. My inspiration was my MIL pointing out that the area under our fridge needed vacuuming. It did. We've never actually owned a place or stayed in one long enough to need to do things like vaccuum fridge coils or change heater filters or power wash the exterior. So as we round into our second year living here I'm trying to figure out all the things that need to be done, and spread them out evenly into appropriate seasons.
After that I have a file folder of household information. The type of filter our fridge uses, the type of ink our printer takes, the colors of the paint in various rooms, ect.
The next section in the notebook is my project section.
Mostly this contains my Project Journal, which gets rewritten every season. I only have a blank example:
Because I like to write this part out in hand, there is just something about planning out creative projects by hand...its different to type it. The biggest section is Around The House, as our home is a constant work in progress. This summer, for example, I want to finish our upstairs which will include getting heat up there, finishing the walls in zeke's closet, painting zeke's room, and painting that bathroom. Other sections are: Celebrations and Holidays, with birthday and holiday and vacation and religious observance's plans; Clothing, where I list out things I need to dress the boys in the next season so I can keep an eye out for sales; and Crafts.
Behind the journal is a file folder with papers that have to do with all of that. A camping supply list for our upcoming camping trip, addresses to send invites to for Zeke's birthday, patterns I want to crochet, drawing I've done of how I want things to look, dimensions for a bookshelf I want Josh to build me, ect.
I never ever ever finish everything in my project journal. Its a planning space and sometimes a wish list space. Things that didnt get done at the end of the season are sometimes forgotten because my interest dwindled and sometimes moved into the next one.
The next section is titled Devotional.
Unfortunately the contents are too private to include :) For the most part its memory verses and a prayer list.
Im going to develop a Gardening Section as well, I think. So far I just have a graph of what I'm planting this year in my projects folder. But it would be nice to have notes on what grew well, what didnt, ect for next year. And also notes on our various bushes, trees, ect and how best to care for them. Its information I googled a lot last spring when we moved in and suddenly I'm finding myself doing it again.
And after that is just a file folder of "Other Stuff". A list of books to check out at the library, and books I loved enough to want to buy. A list of christmas gift ideas. Lists lists lists. I love lists, what can I say? This gives me a place to keep them.
I tried to create a meal planning section but I cant make it work for me. I plan our meals on our calendar on the fridge, I have done so almost since marrying Josh. He's really used to this and looks to the calendar when I ask him what he wants for dinner, he's not going to want to open up the notebook and flip thru. I plan 1 or 2 weeks in advance this way and keep a grocery list is on a post it next to the calender (again, no way josh will open the notebook when we run out of mayo, but he will write it on the fridge). It really works well for us and I realized trying to move it to the notebook was just forcing me to work for the notebook, rather than the notebook working for me.
I also know a lot of notebook people who keep all their bill info in there. I dont pay our bills, Josh does, but its a good idea. I also know people who keep an inventory of household supplies. I've found the "write it down on the post-it when it runs out" work fine for us but It just goes to show how useful a housekeeping notebook can be. Its a lot of work to set up but after that it's great. I must open mine 3 or 4 times a day and I go thru stages of wanting to just move my calender and adress book in there as well and just carrying it with me always, living out of it.
Then again if I had an Android I could probably just do all this in that... :)