Friday, July 27, 2012

More on Organization: The Laundry and Back Entry, More on Control Journal and Yummy

I love to do laundry!  It is by far my favorite domestic task that I get to do.  I love every aspect of it from getting all the dirty stuff sorted out, although that is one of the boys jobs typically, switching loads, hanging the clean clothes out on the line and listening to it flap in the breeze... the fresh air scent that follows... I love folding and putting away.  It is so nice to see the stacks of clean pants, rows of shirts and dresses, neatly folded under garments and the feel of those soft, fuzzy towels... Laundry is just plain fun!  I dream of a first floor laundry with a fold out ironing board, and spacious storage... it is free to dream. Right now I have a basement laundry that is damp and wet when it rains and there are lots of spiders and even an occasion toad! Now remember, I live in Michigan... and for those of you who understand the "Michigan basement" concept you will understand what I am saying. Although I am happy for what I have... it could be worse!

I wanted to touch base a bit more on the Control Journal today.  As I mentioned in my first entry your control journal can be as complex or simple as you the designer want it to be... it can and will grow and change as your home changes, children grow and renovations are done.  Here is how my control journal is set up:
*I use a leather bound 1 1/2 inch 3-ring binder for my journal; it is filled with top loading plastic sleeves and side tabbed divider sheets. 
*My sections are in this order:  Zones, Daily Routines, Daily Home Blessing, Menu Plans & Grocery Lists, Tools, Personal, Activity Frequency List.  Here's what is in each section:
~Zones is one of the Flyladies buzz words and refers to each room of the house and gives a detailed breakdown of what needs to be done.  With this concept spring & fall cleaning can almost be eliminated.  You use a calender that each zone is tackled.
~Daily Routines holds my morning, daily, after school and evening routines~ as well as each day of the weeks schedule of routines that get done. (see below for a sample of one of my  daily routines)
~The Daily Home Blessing is another buzz word and can be compared best to a Mission Statement. I will share mine with you in an upcoming post.
~Menus & Grocery lists. I designed weekly menus to keep on the fridge each week. This helps in grocery shopping and meal prep every morning.  I designed two groups according to seasons: Spring & Summer have menus that are geared more toward the fresh produce we are growing and that is available to us; the other one is Fall & Winter which focus' on what we have canned, frozen and what we have in the root cellar along with what we are still growing the fall garden and winter hoop houses.

~My Tools section has an outline from a Flylady conference that a friend attended and shared with me. It is called, "Tips For Not Getting Sidetracked".   It is basically a breakdown of each chapter in the book and gives practical pointers to help you through the chapters.
~My Personal section holds things that give me inspiration.  I have several poems on mothering, being a help meet, cartoons, drawings from the children and cards from friends and loved ones.  Think of this section as your inspiration section.
~The Frequency of Activities section simply holds a list of how often I want to do particular things.
*Each section has a Title Page~ I have family photo's, pictures the children have made, poems, cards and other special things to me.
... as I said, your control journal is exactly that- yours.  Let it be a reflection of what you love, who you want to be, your faith and your passions!  
Now onto the Laundry and Back Entry tips! Be sure to keep watching, next time will be on my personal favorite, my Office!
Here is my Zone cleaning list for the Laundry Room, I simply copied the Flyladies with a few alterations because it is pretty basic.
Laundry Room cleaning is a weekly chore unless otherwise stated:
*Dust around the ceiling lines and down corners of walls; behind all appliances & furniture.
*I don't have any windows, but if you do, this should be the next step along with wiping down the window ledge; take curtains down monthly and wash- mini blinds same thing.
*Wipe down the tops &  sides of appliances; clean gunk from under the washer lid; I like to run my machines self cleaning cycle!  Be sure to check the dryers lint trap.
*Change garbage; fresh bag; gather up any other junk that got dumped out of pockets.
*Be sure to check you laundry supplies and add anything you need to buy onto your grocery list.
*Check behind & under appliances for any 'lost' items.
*Sweep the floor; mop.
Here are some helpful tips to keep things in their place in your laundry room.
*Hang a shelf above the washer & dryer where you can keep your detergents handy and available.  Put washer supplies over washer and dryer supplies over dryer. 
*Keep a waste basket right beside the dryer or even better between the two appliances where all trash, pocket liter, dryer lint can be easily pitched.
*Keep a recycle bin handy where you can put your clean plastic recyclable bottles in for garbage day.

My Back Entry can be a challenge, especially with living on a farm.  We have an attached garage to our back entry along with three entry doors~ one that comes in from the back yard, one from the garage and one from the driveway side of the house.  As you can imagine we have a lot of traffic coming in at this point of the house... an it looks like it despite how hard Taylor & I try to keep it clean & organized.  Over the years I have tried everything from dressers to baskets to store stuff in.  Again, please remember I have 8 people living in this house and six of them are males- who work & play very hard outside.  The amount of sand, dirt, mud, grit, manure, straw, hay, etc. that comes in is astronomical in my opinion!  So here is where we are at in the Back Entry today...
*On the one wall I have a full length wall mounted coat rack that has six hooks on it. Each hook has three prongs to hang stuff on... we still have stuff land on the floor!  On the other wall there is another coat rack that has four hooks.  The long rack is for all the guys and their work wear, hats and coats.  It gets pretty thick. They are supposed to line their boots up under the row of coats. 
Our back entry is not fancy by any means... although I have tried very hard to make it cute... it still is a back entry that gets too much traffic. 
*In the winter months we have a basket where hats, mitts and scarves get put in when dry. 
... other than this I can't say too much on the Back Entry... Some day when I don't have so many people tromping through I have big plans for a very cute entry way. Until then, I'll let my boys be boys, and try not to grump too much!
**check out my for dragonfly blog to see photo's of my dream back entries, laundry rooms and more!

More Market Fresh Canning Recipe's! These recipe's have been used and adapted from "Lovingly Seasoned Eats & Treats" cookbook.

Pear or Peach Honey Spread
6 pears or peaches, peeled & seeded
1 orange, peeled and seeded
1 lemon, peeled and seeded
2 tart apples, peeled and seeded
3 cups sugar

Grind all fruit together; add sugar. Simmer over medium heat until thick. Pour into containers.  Invert on counter for 24 hours to ensure seal was made.  If any didn't seal, you can water bath for 10 minutes or store in fridge for up to 2 weeks for immediate use.

Believe it or not, here is a pickle recipe!
Dustin's 5-Day Dills
4 cups water
1 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup sea salt
2 Tbsp. pickling spice
1 tsp. alum
Fresh dill

1. Place fresh dill in bottom of a 1 gallon glass jar or crock; put all ingredients in jar or crock; fill jar with clean, sliced cucumbers.
2. Add more dill to top of jar; let set in a sunny spot for 5 days.
Ready to eat. Refrigerate after the 5 days.

Happy Day,

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