Friends on Facebook and Instagram have been sharing their 7 Days of Black and White Photos, no people, no explinations. I loved how real everyone’s photos were so I decided to do it too. I thought it would be fun to share photos here as a little peek into my life. I want to share explinations with this set though because sometimes words help with understanding why something means so much to someone.
Day 1. Sitting at the kitchen table with my coffee. I do this most mornings. The boys are usually just to the right in the living room, playing or watching a favorite show. Often fighting over the same toy. I am just trying to gain enough strength to be a peaceful person til naptime. Trying to enjoy my coffee before the busy work of tidying the kitchen must happen. Or before a fight must be stopped or meltdown prevented. Being a mom is the hardest job some days.
Day 2. I spent most of this afternoon working on a new project I plan to release here on the blog in January! The projects are small, but so meaningful. It is a good day when I can spend a few hours in the pages of this book.
Day 3. A beautiful tree outside one of the living room windows where we are currently staying. It is huge! Consistency and strength are what this tree reminds me of.
Day 4. Horses! One day I will have my own, but until then I’ll visit my friend and admire her beautiful horses.
Day 5. Pancakes on Sunday. One of the few things we have had some consistency with through our big life changes. The boys were gone this weekend, but I still made pancakes for myself.
Day 6. Lighting candles on these early evenings is one small way to bring warmth and light to these cold nights.
Day 7. Impromptu road trips seem to be my go to lately when I’m stressed out. I have made a list of places to visit though so if I feel the urge for a long drive I have a purpose at least and can see some neat places. Nothing beats the small town highways with trees so close to the road.
I hate housework. I really do. And I’ve been terrible at it for 4 of our years together. But since some time last summer I have been putting a huge effort into changing this. Minimizing clutter and getting rid of unnecessary things have realy made a huge impact on how long it takes me to clean.
I grew up in a minimalist home. I feel like that turned me into a hoarder, especially these last few years. I have so much STUFF I don’t need to keep, but wanted it. I think, like with most things, there needs to be balance. Too far one way is no good and too far the other isn’t good either. The weeks I spent decluttering back in January really helped make daily tasks easier.
How can you be minimalist when it comes to housework? Glad you asked! Make yourself a task list -a friend encouraged me to not use the word “chore” because that carries negative energy and makes me dread getting though my list. I just took a notebook paper and drew a line down the middle. Our middle divider is the boys naptime. Everything in the first side should be done before their nap. Everything on the second side should be done by bedtime.
Since putting this into practice a few weeks ago, my house has been cleaner than ever! Anyone that knows me in real life knows how huge this is!
Now I’m sure you’re wondering how the 20 minute thing ties into this, well here it is: I set 20 minute timers on the kitchen stove and run through my task list. I can get almost everything on my morning list done in 20 minutes. Same for the evening list. The exception being dishes, and twice a day -most days- I set a 20 minute timer and just stand and wash up dishes. (That’s about how long it takes to fill up both the dish drainers since we don’t have a dishwasher).
You’ll notice I have basic things in the morning section, and more cleaning tasks in the evening. I don’t know if its just me or if this is true for many people, but when I tried to get cleaning done in the morning I was often repeating those same tasks in the evening too! Such a waste of time. And a huge frustration! Now that we keep clean up tasks in the evening, I can zip through the list and we wake up to a tidy house every morning. This helps our day start off on a positive note, life flows better when I’m not going through the mess leftover from the day before because I didn’t have time to repeat all the tasks before bedtime.
One final note: it takes time to get a balance that will work for you. The best thing you can do is just pick and start! Make your list, set your timer, and go. You may need a longer timeframe or a shorter timeframe, but it really will get easier the more you do it.
In January I thought I would love to start a monthly series just going over highlights from our month. Obviously it is now March and that has not happened yet… so here’s a short recap for January and February and a few things for March, too.
I’ve had a favorite lactation cookie recipe for many years, but it had dairy in it and I’m aiming for dairy free once again so I thought I would remake the recipe to fit my latest eating goals. It is delicious and a few go a long way to giving a boost in the milk production department. Even if you just want a handy snack while breastfeeding, this is the perfect snack recipe!
I have a coffee addiction. It’s not been here long, but long enough that I had grown to depend on my morning coffee to get through the day. As I’m writing this in thinking about how easy it would be to make a pot right now. The cravings and withdrawals have been intense. Today is day 10 without coffee.
This might not seem like a difficult thing to some, quitting coffee, but as a mother of little children it’s been my rock getting me through sleepless nights and long days.