Show Me Your Laundry Room

Getting Organized in Your Home and Homeschool:


Dear Friends,
The Laundry Room is a well-used room in my home. To make it easy to wash laundry and fold it, I try to keep it open and decluttered. I ask the boys to put away their laundry as they do it, but I do allow them to leave their church clothes hanging in the laundry room.

Laundry rooms come in all shapes and sizes. Some washers and dryers are tucked into a closet. Some are in an area that only has room for a stacking washer and dryer. Some of you have large laundry rooms. It does not matter how big or small it is, but it helps you if you keep it clutter-free.

When you have sick children, sometimes dirty laundry gets stacked up. A trip out of town can cause a back-up in the laundry room when you get home. A child cleaning his or her room can cause a back log of laundry.

What I have learned over the years whether I am doing my normal three loads of laundry per day or more, if I fold or hang the load and put it away, my overall laundry process goes more smoothly.

I remember how my life was when my children were little, and I just included them as much as I could in the process. I would sit in the floor with them and fold towels while they played with washcloths. When I folded regular clothes, I would have them stand with me in the laundry room and hand me clothes from the dryer.

If you have children who are age 10 or older, you can teach them how to do their laundry. Remember that many hands make light work. You do not have to live with mounds of laundry – clean or dirty.

Send me a picture of your laundry room at

Today’s Zone Mission is to sweep and mop or vacuum the Entryway and Dining Room.

Your Home Blessing for today is to empty the trash, sweep, and mop.

My menu plan for Friday is take out.

Have a wonderful weekend!


Use Simple Steps to Clean Your Home

Getting Organized:
In your home and homeschool

Dear Friends,

Are you over-complicating your home cleaning routines? Many of you were raised to clean a certain way. Some of you may not have learned a lot about cleaning your home. Either way, you can use simple steps to clean your home.

Your daily schedule as a homeschool mom is busy. You have many things you need to accomplish each day. To clean your home, you need to take a look at your overall, weekly schedule. Are you out of the house a large amount of time during a specific day each week? Do you have specific days you are home?

Next, take a look at the seven parts of the Weekly Home Blessing Hour. Each of these should take you 10 minutes or less. You can do all of them in a little more than an hour one day each week. The FlyLady uses Monday as the day to do the Weekly Home Blessings.
Here are the 7 parts:

1)      Declutter Magazines (I also declutter paper.)
2)      Take out the Trash
3)      Wipe Windows and Mirrors
4)      Dust
5)      Change Sheets
6)      Vacuum
7)      Sweep/Mop
When I am doing my Home Blessings in a one-hour session, I will start my sheets and either remake the bed immediately with a clean set of sheets, or I will wash and dry them while I am doing the other parts of the Home Blessings. With a large household, I wash a load of sheets each day.

Most weeks, I do one or two of the Home Blessings a day. That way I can budget 10 to 20 minutes a day for a Home Blessing, and I am able to get them all finished before Saturday.

This is how my schedule looks for Home Blessings:

Monday – wash sheets
Tuesday – dust and vacuum
Wednesday – wipe windows and mirrors
Thursday – declutter magazines (and paper)
Friday – take out trash, sweep, and mop

By keeping them short and simple, I can get them done. I know you can do it, too. Don’t try to do detail cleaning by moving furniture and taking everything off of your flat surfaces. You will do those tasks during your Zone Mission time.

You can piggy-back your daily Home Blessing and Zone Mission, if you can budget 20 to 30 minutes. It tends to work better for me to do a Home Blessing in the morning and the Zone Mission in the afternoon.

If you home has more than one level, you can work on one level the first week of the month, and then you can do you Home Blessings on the other level the second week of the month. You would just alternate every week which level you do your Home Blessings.

You will want to have a daily pick up time in your home to better facilitate your endeavors to do your Home Blessings quickly. I have talked to many ladies who tell me that they spend 10 minutes or more just picking up things before they can start their Home Blessings. Your family needs to pick up behind themselves, and the things in your home need a place to be stored out of the way.

How are you doing with cleaning your home weekly?

Today’s Zone Mission is to detail dust the Dining Room.

Your Home Blessing for today is to declutter paper and magazines.

My menu plan for Thursday is lasagna for the guys and veggies for me.

Have a great day!

What do I do if I have a lot of papers to declutter?

Getting Organized:
In your home and homeschool


Dear Friends,
Recently someone asked me about dealing with a lot of papers that are many years old. She has been struggling with all types of clutter, but the paper clutter is some of hers and some of it for a family member who has passed away several years ago.

When a family member of mine passed away, I was appointed as the Executrix. I had to go through mounds of paperwork. Some of the papers were more than 20 years old, but they contained personal information. I did not want this paper to get into the hands of someone who could use it to steal the identity.

The first step in the process was to get some empty boxes out. I labeled them as trash, recycle, or file. As I was sorting, I jotted down the titles I would need to make file folders. Since these were not my papers, I was handling these papers more than once. It was an overwhelming amount of paper. It took more than a month to sort and deal with the papers.

Each day, I made file folders and filed the papers that I needed to keep for the estate settlement. I did not wait until the end of the process to make the file folders. I just did it a little at a time.

When I was finished with the first sorting, I had a large box of papers that needed to be shredded. It was more than I wanted to do at home, so I looked for a company that did bulk shredding in my area. I took the papers and paid per pound to have the papers professionally shredded.

Some of you have a backlog of papers in your home, and you just don’t know how to get rid of them safely. It’s important that you protect your identifying information. Some of you will be getting rid of old tax returns this year as you finish your taxes for 2017. Some of you have a lot of homeschool papers that you don’t know how to get them out of your house.

Do some research. Invest in a good-quality shredder. Look for a business that does bulk shredding. You have options available. In the past, I have used a burn barrel when we had a particularly wet season. You could have a small bonfire and roast marshmallows one evening if you have a lot of papers to burn.

Don’t let papers overwhelm your home. Spend a few minutes daily getting paper out of your home.

Your Zone Mission today is to declutter in the Dining Room.

Your Home Blessing for today is to wipe your windows and mirrors.

My menu plan for Wednesday is pork chops. Salad and veggies for me.

Have a great day!

Decluttering the Entryway to Your Home

Getting Organized:
In your home and homeschool


Dear Friends,

This morning, I want you to walk outside for a few minutes as soon as you finish your Morning Routine. Breathe deeply. Enjoy the fresh air. List the things you are grateful for this morning. It can be a simple list, or it can be a list as long as you wish.

Next, I want you to walk into the main entrance of your home and pretend you are a visitor for the first time. What do you see?

The main entryway to your home is where your family goes in and out the most. It is a clutter magnet. Family members will drop things as they come into the door. They will drop things on the floor or put them on the nearest flat surface.

You might have a coat rack or shoe rack in this area. You might have places for your launch pad for your family to put things out that they need the next time they leave the house.

As you survey this area, you need to decide what is necessary and what can be moved. You might need to write down a list if you have several things in this area. If you have items in this area that family members need to put away, write these down.

Sometime during the day, spend 15 minutes decluttering and putting things away that have landed in your entryway. When you walk into the house, I want you to have a feeling of peace. If your entryway is full of stuff, it is not going to give you a feeling of peace.

Put your things away daily as an example for your children. If your family has things that need to be put away, play a game with them to get the area cleared. You might need to remind your family regularly to put their things away. Keep it fun though! No nagging!

Your Home Blessing for today is to dust and vacuum.

Your Zone Mission for today is to declutter in the entryway.

My menu plan for Tuesday is Taco Tuesday.

Have a blessed day!

Making Your Bed Daily to Help You Start Your Day

Getting Organized:
In your home and homeschool


Dear Friends,
Happy April! It’s the beginning of a new month, and we will practice a new Habit of the Month. We are going to make our beds first thing each morning. Some of you have been doing this already, but if you are not making your bed daily, start today.
When I get up in morning, the first thing I do is to make my side of the bed. I pull the covers and fluff my pillow while my husband is still asleep on his side of the bed. When he gets up, he makes his side of the bed. That’s it! It makes me happy to see my bed made when I walk into my room. Once a week, I wash my sheets and remake the bed.
We will have a full week in Zone 1. You will be able to spend time in each area daily. If you need to switch things around, you have the freedom to do that.
Zone 1 Missions: The Front Porch, Entryway, and Dining Room
Monday – Declutter & Sweep the Front Porch
Tuesday – Declutter in the Entryway
Wednesday – Declutter in the Dining Room
Thursday – Detail Dust the Dining Room
Friday – Detail Sweep & Mop or Vacuum the Entryway
Set your timers and then take a break when it goes off!

As you practice the habit of making your bed daily, teach your children to do the same. Do not expect a perfect job. Resist the urge to remake their beds. Let them practice this habit and do the best they can do.

Practicing these habits will help you move along faster each morning toward starting your homeschool day.

Your Home Blessing for today is to wash the sheets.

Your Zone Mission for today is to declutter and sweep the Front Porch.

My menu plan for Monday is chicken and dumplings and veggies.

Have a blessed day!

Make Memories with Your Family This Weekend

Getting Organized in Your Home and Homeschool:

Dear Friends,
Holidays are lots of fun. We make plans and look forward to spending the day with our family. Holidays can also bring out some stressors in your life. Sometimes we feel let down or even sad on a Holiday because things did not go the way we wanted them to go. This can be our perfectionism rearing its head.

How do you deal with these feelings?

If you have too many things on your calendar for a Holiday, it is very hard to enjoy your day. If you wait until it is time to go to get ready, you add stress to your day. Do your daily routines and do things ahead of time when possible.

When we celebrated our first Christmas after my grandfather passed away, I will admit that the traditions and buying presents was very hard for me that year. I did it for my children, but my heart was not completely in it. I had to keep things simple, and it was okay.

Some of you are experiencing loss, and this Holiday weekend might be hard for you. It is okay to have mixed feelings about celebrating the Holiday. Use the principles you have learned from The FlyLady. Prepare things ahead of time. Keep things simple. Look for JOY in the day.

Do the traditions that you enjoy the most. Even if some of your traditions seem different, it is okay. You will find familiarity in your traditions.

The past year has changed some dynamics in our family life, and I have learned that I can still do many of the same things I have done on Holidays in the past. I have also learned that it is okay to make new traditions, too. My boys are getting older, and they enjoy many of our yearly traditions. Each year I wonder if this is the last year we will dye Easter eggs, but each year, they ask to do them again.

As you make plans for your big meal this weekend, remember those around you who have experienced loss this year and invite them to celebrate with you.

Make memories with your family this weekend. Let go of perfectionism. Find JOY in the moments. Don’t rush from thing to thing. Relish in having your family around you, not everyone will have that privilege this weekend.

Make a list of the things you need to do to be ready for Sunday, and do a little at a time today and tomorrow. You can do it!

Today’s Zone Mission is to wipe the baseboards and do your last little decluttering mission in the Living Room.

Your Home Blessing for today is to empty the trash, sweep, and mop.

My menu plan for Friday is take out.
Have a wonderful weekend!

Your daily routines will being you peace.

Getting Organized:
In your home and homeschool

Dear Friends,

Do you ever have a day or a week where you seem to deal with a lot of curve balls? You will find peace in doing daily routines. You need to do them consistently, so they become a habit.

When I talk to ladies who are frustrated or stressed out, many times they admit to me that they struggle with their daily routines. They have many excuses for why they do not get through their basic routines, but I want to tell you from my experience is that the daily routines are what give you peace.

Start today with your basic evening routine. Check your calendar for tomorrow, shine your kitchen sink, lay out your clothes, put things at the launch pad, wash your face, brush your teeth, and go to bed at a decent hour.

When my day has been busy, I find peace in my evening routine. I start it right after dinner. While the boys are clearing the table and washing dishes, I will check the calendar and my weather app. Then I gather my clothes and lay them out. I will also do a few minutes of decluttering and deal with my kitchen hot spots. I start to feel the peace that comes with the decluttering and in doing my routines.

In the morning, you need to nail down your routine. I know your children interrupt you, and that is why you need to get up before your children and do your routine as soon as you get out of bed. Last week, one of the boys was sick during the night. We had a rough start to the morning. My morning routine had many interruptions, but I still finished it. I was reminded of how it used to be for me when I had toddlers and preschoolers. It can take a while to do your morning routine if you are trying to do after the children are up in the mornings, so set your alarm for at least 15 minutes before the children normally get up.

Be intentional in doing your daily routines. Keep them short and simple. I want you to have peace in your day, too.

Today’s Zone Mission is to clean under the living room furniture. Be sure to enlist help.

Your Home Blessing for today is to declutter paper and magazines.

My menu plan for Thursday is chicken for the guys and veggies for me.

Have a great day!

What is a Hot Spot Drill?

Getting Organized:
In your home and homeschool


Dear Friends,

Someone asked me this what a Hot Spot Fire Drill is. It sounded intriguing to her, but she did not know exactly what it is. This is a fun way to declutter in your home.

A Hot Spot is a flat surface in your home that attracts clutter on a regular basis. All of us have places that are Hot Spots. In the entryway, it is where your family members drop things when they come into the house.

In the kitchen, you can have several hot spots — the island, the counter tops, or the table. It could be all three of these areas in your home.
In the Living Room, Hot Spots can rage on your coffee tables or end tables. It can be the entertainment center or a bookshelf.

In your bedroom, cluttered Hot Spots can be found on your dresser or nightstand. A hot spot can rage in a closet if you tend to dump things in the closet instead of putting them away.

Your Zone Mission today is to deal with the Hot Spots in your Living Room. Set your timer for 15 minutes and turn on some music. You can include your children, too, especially if the things that need to be put away belong to them.

As you clear your Hot Spots, there will be some that need to be cleared daily, like a kitchen island. Some hot spots will be easier to maintain, such as your bedroom dresser. The way I handle it is to do a Hot Spot drill once a day somewhere in my house. With a large family, hot spots happen on a daily basis.

My kitchen table is something I use daily for work, school, and eating with my family. I am able to keep hot spots from developing and staying because we use it all day. My kitchen island takes more effort because we use it for meal prep three times a day, and it is also where people put things throughout the day. When we do our evening routine, I ask family members to come by and pick up whatever belongs to them.

Your Zone Mission today is to spend 15 minutes clearing a Hot Spot.

Your Home Blessing for today is to wipe your windows and mirrors.

My menu plan for Wednesday is chicken stir fry. Salad and veggies for me.

Have a great day!

Choosing the end of your school year.

Getting Organized:
In your home and homeschool


Dear Friends,
As we are approaching the Easter, do you have the end of your school year planned?
Take a look at your lesson plans and school days. Set the end of your school year, if you have not already done so. We will end our school year at the end of May.
It is important for you and your children to have an end in sight, even if you homeschool year round, you need breaks. Please resist the temptation to keep pushing through your homeschool books without breaks.
Over the years, I have seen my children grasp concepts they struggled with when I gave them a break from it. They are able to process a lot of information through play and being creative. A break can be beneficial to a child who has struggled with learning a new concept.
As a teacher, I also need a break. It helps me to get rid of materials we have finished and start thinking about the new school year. I generally start wrapping things up with the boys during the month of April. We do testing in April, and we see how much we have left to cover in each subject.
If you look at the end of your child’s math book, you will see that the last several lessons are teaching concepts they will not be covering for a year or more. It is more of an introduction to higher level math. You do not have to complete every single lesson in a textbook. Most of us did not finish all of a textbook, and you are not obligated to do every lesson with your child.
The end of year testing is used for me to see where they are, and it helps me determine if we need any remediation on a subject before the end of the year. I test because state law mandates that I test them, but I do use the results.
Tell me when you are ending your homeschool year.
Your Home Blessing for today is to dust and vacuum.
Your Zone Mission for today is to go sofa diving.
My menu plan for Tuesday is tacos and vegetables.
Have a blessed day!

How are your Zone Missions Going?

Getting Organized:
In your home and homeschool


Dear Friends,
We are entering the last week of the month. We practiced the habit of getting dressed down to the shoes, and we decluttered our way around the house. Are you ready to tackle Zone 5 – The Living Room this week?
Zone 5 Missions: The Living Room
Monday – Declutter the flat surfaces & detail dust
Tuesday – Go Sofa Diving (Clean out under the cushions)
Wednesday – Hot Spot Fire Drill in Living Room
Thursday – Clean under the Living Room Furniture
Friday – Wipe the Baseboards & Declutter
Set your timers and then take a break when it goes off!
The Living Room can go one of two ways. It can be a seldom-used room that needs little detail cleaning, or it can be a well-used room in your home. In our house, the Living Room is well-used. We don’t have a Family Room or Bonus Room. The monthly Zone Missions help me take care of the clutter that finds its way into the Living Room.
One of the boys particularly enjoys going sofa and chair diving because he gets to keep the money he finds down in the cushions. I don’t have to do this task. He volunteers to do it.
When I need to clean under the furniture, the boys help me move things around. This is a task that you should not do by yourself. You need help, so you can do this safely.
Sometimes, I set the timer and turn on some music. Then we play a game to put away the things that have migrated to the Living Room. Yes, this happens in my house, too. Take a look around the room your family hangs out. Did they leave things that belong elsewhere? If so, have a Hot Spot Fire Drill! The goal is to put things where they belong. If they don’t have a place, then get rid of them.
If you have small children, give them a cloth and make it a game to wipe the baseboards. The goal in teaching your children to care for their home is to make it fun. You want them to have joy in blessing their home. It is not drudgery or a chore.
If you have a formal Living Room that does not need a lot of decluttering, declutter the room your family does use for hanging out. You can just detail dust your formal Living Room.

How did you do this month with your Zone Missions and the Habit of the Month (Getting Dressed Down to the Lace-Up Shoes)?

Your Home Blessing for today is to wash the sheets.

Your Zone Mission for today is to declutter the flat surfaces in the Living Room and detail dust.

My menu plan for Monday is pinto beans, salad, and veggies.

Have a blessed day!