I'm back home from spending five days with Lauren and Robert and their gorgeous new baby. (Check out the post below to see some darling pics!) A care calendar is starting up and friends are lining up to bring meals for the next few weeks, so they will be well taken care of in the food department.
As I worked in my daughter's kitchen, I noticed that she has a nicely organized cupboard for storage containers. Bowls and lids - that match - are stacked and easily available. This is going to come in really handy when leftovers start piling up from the generous meals they'll receive.
Today's Small Thing is to straighten up your storage containers.
Are they all thrown in disarray in a drawer or cabinet? Do you have a bunch of lids waiting to be matched with their container, only to realize that no container will ever come to them? Put them out of their misery by tossing those lidless containers and containerless lids out, and making room for the pairs that actually work. I've got a whole bin full of singles taking up precious space that I can get rid of today.
If this job scares you because it seems too big, set a timer and give yourself 10-15 minutes MAX and then stop.
And hey, do some showing off! Post "Before and After" pictures on your blog, drag a family member over to see your handiwork, tell a friend what you did, or leave a comment! Enjoy the rush of container excitement when you see how organized you are!
This is a job that makes you feel incredibly organized and powerful, you'll see!
My heart was really full, when upon close inspection, we determined that this fuzz is strawberry blonde. I've been hoping for at least ONE red-headed grandchild, and it appears my prayers have been answered.
I'm still at my daughter Lauren's house, helping her and Robert get settled with baby Ivy. Ya'll, she is soooo precious! I could literally eat her. I'll post some pictures tomorrow, but as I write this, it is 2:30 am - I've been up with this little bundle awhile and am wondering how I could have forgotten how exhausting newborns are!
I'm reposting this Small Thing from sometime in 2012 because it's so easy....and because it's something I know I need to do in my home. I thank God for Small Things to accomplish each day - the little tasks that give me a sense of direction and movement when I get stuck in inertia, or overwhelm, or simply tiredness. Possibly even boredom.
Today's Small Thing is all about tops. I started noticing the tops of things the other day, when I happened to run my finger across the top of my coffee maker and realized I could draw a design in the dust. Ew. And I thought I'd just cleaned that. From there, my gaze went to the top of my stove vent hood. Oh mercy. Really, Rachel? Suddenly I noticed that the tops of every thing in my kitchen were dusty.
I am still afraid to look at the top of the fridge.
So I moved on to the next room, simply observing tops. Tops of picture frames. Tops of tables. Tops of lamps. Tops of books. Tops of electronics. Tops of vases. Tops of baseboards. Tops, tops, tops.
Tops. Basically, they are dust magnets!
Today's Small Thing is to fill in this blank: "Today, I cleaned the top of my _______________."
Now, if you are an indecisive person, you'll have to overcome your propensity to procrastinate and simply PICK ONE THING for your blank. What you can do is this: whip out a dust cloth, damp rag or feather duster and hit the high spots of a bunch of things as fast as you can. Then, find something odd or super high or perennially ignored for your blank fill-in. My refrigerator top comes immediately to mind....
What top will you tidy today? Fill in the blank in the comments today...let's see who's got the TOP top!!
POINTS: 40 for one top, 10 each for up to 3 more (70 max)
P.S. I'm praying for the people of Oklahoma in the wake of the awful tornadoes yesterday. Do you know of the best way to help them? I want to do something in the relief effort and would love to know your recommendation. I cannot imagine what they are going through.
We might be the last remaining people in the United States who have a sliding glass door. When we first moved into this house, we had to replace the original sliding door. It would have been the perfect opportunity to put in French doors......but no. I suppose we were counting our pennies and went with the least expensive route at the time, but I sure do regret that decision.
Not so much for the style issue, but for the groove issue.
The grooves in the track that holds the doors collect dirt like crazy! I am always picking leaves and clumps of dirt from the grooves, and vacuuming it with a skinny attachment every chance I get. Even when it's clean, it doesn't really look clean.
But I'm feelin' groovy today, and I'm going to tackle those tracks. Let's be groovy together and find anything with grooves that need attention.
Today's Small Thing is to get into the groove.
"Groove," you might say? "I don't got any groove."
Ha! That is no excuse. Everyone's got at lease SOME groove! Even a white girl from the midwest, like me, who was raised by Norwegian Lutherans. It's in there, just waiting to get out...so let it flow, baby.
Let's put on our thinking caps and totally find your grooves:
Car consoles (those things that hold change - yuk!)
Refrigerator water dispensers
Decorative edges on furniture
Rubber welcome mat
Computers- grooves all over the place, if you look
WOW! Girl, you got LOTS of groove! I'll bet I've only touched the tip of the iceberg....there's so much more just waiting to be discovered. Help us list even more grooves - and then get in there with Q-tips, brushes, cleaning cloths and vacuum attachments and bust a move.
You might want to break out the tie-dye T-shirt for this one. And sing "Feelin' Groovy" by Simon and Garfunkel...you know you want to.
for attacking at least ONE area groovy area
What grooves did you find? What attachments/tools did you use to clean them?
Ivy Grace arrived yesterday at 8:46 am, after a long hard night of labor. Lauren, my daughter, was a trooper - I don't know how she did it! Fourteen hours of intense work to get her here. She and Robert are tired but ecstatic over this little miracle:
Weighing in at 8 lb. 12 oz., Ivy has a good start in life. She is 21.5" long. A KEEPER!
Blue eyes and (possibly) reddish hair....and all ten fingers and toes.
Can you tell I'm in heaven? I'm pinching myself to believe that this is all true!
If you'd like to link up for Company Girl Coffee, I'd love to check in on you this weekend. Simply add your blog post URL to the linky tool below and you're all set! And ladies, go check out the blogs that link up and say hello!
Who am I kidding?
I hate cleaning up the kitchen. Sometimes I just want to scream and run away from the never-ending cycles of food and dishes. They just go on and on and I don't want to wash another plate as long as I live. And that's not overstating it.
Yesterday, I had forgotten to start the dishwasher and the next batch of breakfast/lunch/dinner dishes was piled in the sink. I stacked everything as neatly as I could and then got out of the kitchen. I planned to leave it like that until morning, when I'd have enough courage to face the round of sticky plates and bowls. Yuck. I had enough for one day. I did a mile walk, wrote some emails, worked on a few chores and then grabbed a book so I could disappear into a novel for the rest of the evening.
One last drink of water before heading upstairs. I flipped on the kitchen light and stood there. The dishwasher had finished round one of the dishes and I thought, "well, it would just take a few minutes to unload this so in the morning all I'd have to do is load what's in the sink."
So I unloaded it, then looked at the pile of stacked dishes. "It would just take a few more minutes to go ahead and load these, and then I wouldn't have to wake up to this mess," I mused.
In less than fifteen minutes, the sink area was cleared and wiped down....and I didn't even scream about it. I guess because I thought I was doing something "extra" and "not required" it didn't seem so bad. Wow, I was amazed.
Today's Small Thing is to give yourself an extra fifteen minutes in the kitchen.
Set your timer and go to town. You don't even have to try and beat the clock, because fifteen minutes is A LOT of time when you devote it to one area. Load the dishwasher, wipe down counters, scrub your sink.....whatever is that "extra" step today. You'll probably have time left over on your clock and wonder what to do with those last few minutes.
Amaze yourself in fifteen beautiful little minutes.
What did you accomplish in fifteen minutes? Impress us.
We are still waiting for Baby Ivy to arrive. It's hard not to be anxious and impatient when we want her to get here so badly! Her momma and daddy are so ready to meet her...and at 41 weeks and 2 days, you can imagine how Lauren's body is aching to give birth. Oh, we want that baby!
I sat on my couch yesterday morning, Bible open and coffee in hand. It's the place I go when I'm waiting.
Please, God. Bring Ivy into this world soon. Let her be healthy and strong. Make her perfect and beautiful and wonderful. Bring her now. Please.
I read the last few chapters of the book of Job - the mighty passages in which God speaks out of the whirlwind and reminds Job and his friends that He is the creator and sustainer of all life. They'd demanded answers of Him and He declined to give any....but instead He asks, "Where were you when I created the universe?" He shows His greatness through examples of nature, and extends mercy to the people who questioned Him.
I don't like to wait. It's hard to trust, the longer it goes.
And yet God, in His infinite wisdom, knows the days and hours of each breath we take. He knows when Ivy will arrive and how many hairs will be on that little round head. He has seen her fingers and toes and bellybutton....He created her and I know I can trust that He will rejoice at her first breath right along with us.
He is here in the waiting. And He is never late.
Are you waiting on something? Maybe a new job, or a new opportunity to arrive. Maybe you're waiting for a husband to make a decision, or a child to be potty-trained. Maybe you're waiting for a conflict to be resolved, or to find out if adoption papers have been approved. It's hard not to be anxious, impatient, questioning.
But God is in your waiting, just as He is in ours as we wait for Ivy.
Today's Small Thing is two-fold:
1. Spend some time in your "waiting place." On your couch, in your bedroom, or at your kitchen table. Perhaps take a walk. Somewhere where you can be still.
2. Commit your situation to the Lord. Rest in Him.
The Bible is filled with scriptures on waiting. It does my heart good to meditate on them.
Psalm 37:7 says, "Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for him...."
Psalm 27:14 "Wait patiently for the LORD. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the LORD."
Isa. 40:31 "They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength...."
When we actively and intentionally meet with Him and surrender to Him, He is able to step in and work...always in His timing and in His way. He is God of the universe and holds all things in the palm of His hand. In light of His greatness, our own situations seem small and simple for Him to handle, don't they?
We can rest in knowing that He is with us...even in the waiting.
40 points for spending intentional time in your waiting place.
Is there something you are praying about? You can share it in the comments here, or drop me an email. I'll be happy to wait with you....and pray for God's timing.
Hey, when is the last time you had a big, juicy piece of fruit?
If you're struggling to remember, it's a safe bet that's too long ago.
Personally, I'm just coming out of a sugar-induced coma, what with all the cookies I've eaten since I had to bake them for my son's home-coming from college. The things moms do for their kids. Such sacrifice.
So here's Today's Small Thing: Take the fruit out of your fridge and set it out in a bowl as an edible centerpiece.
Or you can artfully cut it up however you like. The point is, get fruity for a day and enjoy what is long forgotten in our busy lives: things that aren't packaged and processed.
We recently rekindled a love affair with clementines, simply by putting them in a bowl on the counter! Even little fingers can peel them and eat them like candy. A bag of clementines cost me just a little more than a bag of Cheetos. Both snacks are bright orange, but only one of them makes you glad you ate it afterwards.
And here's a handy guide, provided by the USDA, that shows what we should be eating....not a Cheeto in sight.
I will have to stop at the grocery store to fulfill today's task, but I have renewed incentive to stock up on fruit.....points.
POINTS: 40 for setting out some fruit or arranging a fruit plate
BONUS POINTS: 10 per person in the family who eats at least 1 serving (1/2 cup) (long-lost relatives not included)
What is YOUR favorite fruit? Do you have a good technique to get yourself (and your family) to eat more fruit?
I know you're wondering about the baby. My grandbaby. The baby that will rock my world. Well, we are still waiting for my daughter's baby to arrive! Little Ivy was due on Monday, so of course we are on pins and needles, hoping she'll pop into the world soon! Mama is feeling good, but getting anxious to meet that little one...so please send up a prayer for her, would you? Plus, I really really want to hold her. :)
What's going on in your life? Link up below and let us know! Company Girl Coffee is an easy way to say hello to new and old friends...and we'd love to get to know you!
The Stack, baby. It's been months since we've attacked a stack. So whaddaya say we do it today?
Stacks are my go-to organizational "system."
When things get messy, I simply gather up the clutter and pile it into stacks. It's a temporary fix that puts a bandaid on a larger problem.
Stacks of books. Stacks of papers. Stacks of bills. Stacks of DVD's. Stacks of folded clothes. Stacks of things on the stairs.
But every so often, the stacks have got to get dismantled or I find myself shifting stacks around to find things. I know from past experience that ya'll know EXACTLY what I'm talking about.
The last time we did a stack attack was in December. Why, that's almost six months of unabated stacking! Horrifying. But this is one of my favorite tasks. Why? Because in a few minutes flat, I can demolish a bunch of stacks like a whirlwind of organizational greatness.
Today's Small Thing is this: See how many stacks you can get rid of in 15 minutes.
Oh, is that too long? OK, 5 minutes, then.
When I see a stack go away, it gives me a feeling of accomplishment. It might just be a stack of dishes by the sink that I obliterate, but it's enough to boost my confidence and self esteem. YES, I DO ROCK!!!
So....Go! Demolish a stack today! Whittle that baby down to nothing and see if you don't stand a little taller and throw your shoulders back and chin out. I see that swagger! You go right ahead a brag.....after all, YOU ROCK!!
What stack is bugging you? How long has it been there? Longer than a week? A month? Get rid of it today!
Share your stack story! You're among friends.