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Friday, September 28, 2012

Day 13 - Adult Books Day 2 or organize the fridge.

We don't have anymore bookshelves with our own books, so I guess I'll organize the fridge.  I do this on a regular basis, as I put new groceries in and hopefully, I clean it right before I go and get said groceries.

Well, because of some big things going on this weekend our fridge is exceptionally full - of pop, which we don't drink much.  But the youth group families are here tomorrow, so we are preparing for that. 

I will be glad for a fridge that is wiped out and clean, so I'll spend a few minutes doing that today.  Considering what's going on right now in my life, I'm thankful for a fairly easy day.  And I'm also thankful for something to do.

Have a great day. 
Steph

A Legacy

She was quiet and unassuming, but if you knew her and were alone with her you could laugh till the tears ran down your face.  Her smile was beautiful and her caring heart amazing.  She gave everything she had and even more sometimes for those she loved. 
Waterman and L
I first met L when I had three little boys under the age of 3.  My family had just moved to the island of Borneo from the capital city, Jakarta, Indonesia.  I had a three-month old, a 20-month old and one who was one month shy of three.  I was trying to learn the language and learn how to live in a culture so foreign to my own, and I was trying to care for three little boys.  The leadership advised that we get some help.

Since we were considering and fairly confident that we would move to her tribal group and eventually learn the language that was her heart language, it was suggest that L come to town and move in with us.  There were some bumps that first month or two as I learned how to adjust to having someone in my home.  She was so gracious and there were even a few tears as we went over these bumps. 

I've learned over the years that some of the bumpiest starts end up being the best of friendships.  She was with us when we moved into the tribal location where we would spend the next three years.  She cooked, cleaned, loved on my boys, helped me with language, and stayed with me while my husband went on trips.

She was a lifeline - God's provision to us in time of great need.  He knew what it would take for us to get through language study - it was L.  During my times of struggling with worry over my husband being on a motorcycle on narrow slippery roads, she was there to give me a hug or distract me with conversation and helping me with the boys.

She was thrilled when Bugaboo was born.  Ecstatic over each addition to our crowd.  When Jules was born, she came with us, so that she could meet her before we took off for America.  My babies don't remember her much, just the older two, but I can tell them without a doubt that this woman adored them.

She was there when Waterman drowned in the fish pond.  She was helping me with the other two when Waterman got lost in the shuffle and ended up in the pond, and she was as devastated as we were.  It was her "nephew", and she loved him so much.

She was a part of us.  She was family.  There were times when we had to make decisions that were hard for her to understand and my language skills were so poor that I couldn't communicate properly what was happening.  But she took them all in stride and was so gracious with us silly white people. 


She was a part of us.  She was family.  And eventually, within their culture, I was adopted by her parents.  But I told her nothing would change - she was already my sister.  When my husband was gone on trips, she and I would have a slumber party and stay awake talking and laughing.  She grew as a woman of God and I grew as a mother and wife and friend.  We learned together and became close as sisters.

We left Indonesia and had very little contact with her. She married and adopted a little girl.  She had many miscarriages, and still longed for a baby.  Just two weeks ago, I was able to chat with her on Facebook.  It was such a precious time, though I can't communicate even as well as I once could.  She was pregnant again and hoping that this time it would last. 

Two days I ago I received word that she was in the hospital - her right side was paralyzed and she couldn't talk.  Yesterday, she joined heaven's throng and now is worshipping at Jesus' feet.  Her last words to me were in response to my comment that at least we'll be together in heaven.  She said, "I know and I'm glad but I sure hope that we can still see each other on this earth once more."  Her wish was not granted, because God had a different plan for her. 

I'm so thankful that I will see her again.  Thank you for letting me share her story from our perspective.  This was only one part of her ministry.  She worked in many other aspects of missions.  She gave freely and loved deeply.  She blessed our lives so much.  And whether or not  my babies remember her, she left them a legacy - during their early years she loved them so much and they are who they are partly because of her.  For that matter, I am who I am because of her too.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Day 12 - Adult books Day 1

Today was rather an easy job.  I have already been working on weeding out the adult books that we didn't want.  I had a box of books from my grandma, so I read them and passed them on.  Mostly I just straightened the books and put them where they belong. 

It was a good thing it was so easy.  With Bible Study this morning and a start on the Titus 2 Tea group tonight, I really didn't have much time for de-cluttering today. But it's done.  And I'm super excited about tonight!!!!!!

Making the most of today,
Steph

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Day 11 - Kids' books Day 2

Today I will do the books that are upstairs.  Each room has a bookshelf with books in it.  I will at the very least simply straighten the books on the shelves.  I really hate throwing books away.   But if they are demolished, I do. 

I must remind myself that the purpose of all this is to make life easier.  A few minutes a day of getting rid of things will help me keep up in the long run. 

A few new games and books and puzzles arrived this week with Grandpa and Grandma, so I won't feel super bad passing the games we don't use to some who don't have as much as we do.

Making the most of today
Steph

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Day 10 - Children's books 1st day

My in-laws left today.  We had a wonderful time together as we always do.  Because of that I took a break from the de-cluttering.

I worked on the kids' books that are downstairs.  I found a few that I know we never use so we'll be passing those on to some other children. 

Since I'm always cleaning up the bookshelves, old books that are torn apart usually get taken care of right away.  Also we don't have enough bookshelves for all the books we have, so generally I'm weeding out books on a regular basis.

Hopefully you all find a few minutes to get a few things decluttered today.

Making the most of each day.
Steph

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Day 9 - Desk or Work area

For me this job is something I do on a regular basis.  I try to clean up the mail and file it in the morning while I'm in my room and the kids are cleaning their rooms.  So it all gets filed away then, if it's a normal day.  School stuff gets filed away as soon as it's done. 

A thorough cleaning of the office filing cabinet happens during tax season when I take everything from the past year out and sort it and put the things that need to be saved in a small box in my closet.  I buy my boxes for this in the office section at Wal-mart.  This way they are stackable.  I buy two each year - one for personal and one for dh's business.  Once we have seven for each, then we won't be buying anymore. 

A thorough cleaning of the school stuff happens during summer, when I'm getting next year's school plans ready.  Each quarter we go through each child's folder and save one or two pages from that quarter.  This goes in their memory box. 

Doing as you go works super well, but I'm always finding piles of paper that need to be sorted.   Such is life in my house. 

Making the most of today
Steph

P.S.  The in-laws are arriving tonight so we'll be skipping a few days probably.  Enjoy the break.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Day 8 - DVD's, Videos and CD's

Today, I am continuing the never-ending process of clearing out the music and video selections we have, finding homes for the CDs/DVDs that are not in their case. 

Whenever I put a CD/DVD in and it 'glitches', I generally throw it away.  I did NOT realize that CDs can be downloaded to iTunes.  Now, I try that before I get rid of it.  Still there are some that are beyond saving and therefore they go in the trash.  Why am I saving these things????

This is a process that takes time, so I won't get it all done today.  But if I work at it a little at a time, then I will get done. 

But I did find a few CD's that don't even work in the computer.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Day 7 - Pantry and storage closet

There really isn't a lot to de-clutter in these two spots, but our pantry needs organized once in awhile and for me this is a good time to do that.  

Whenever I shop and the cupboards are low in stuff is the best time to do the pantry.  Usually I try to do that, but sometimes it all just gets thrown in there. 

The storage closet got some upgrades in it.  We have our recycling bins and our trash for the dump in there.  I'm trying to work out a better system for that trash as we go about once a month to the dump.  So this weekend, Jones built a boot rack for me.  So all our chore boots are in there along the back wall.  The cat food and dog food is also stored in there, much to the delight of the mouse who has found it.  It's now his pantry where he gets all his food.  Ugh!

So nothing was thrown from these rooms, unless you count all the trash from the bin that was already trash.  :)  Yeah, no.  Can't count that.

Hope you're enjoying your de-cluttering.
Steph

Day 6 - Decluttering table linens

Today was de-cluttering linens.  I had some that I was saving just cuz we got them for our wedding or something special.  I decided to give away napkins that had less than 10 in the set.  It left me with a set of white napkins, some orange ones for fall and some floral ones. 

Then I went through the tablecloths.  I saved the ones I like for fall and then ones for Christmas.  Otherwise we generally don't use tablecloths.  So I think I saved four.

The rest are ready to go upstairs in the bin for giving away.  The tablecloths and napkins are still nice, just not what we need.

I also have some placemats that don't work for us either, so those are going in the bin as well. 

Making the most of today,
Steph

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Day Five of De-Cluttering

Spices and Cookbooks

Today I did the spices and cookbooks.  It's so nice to know what spices I have and be able to see without shuffling through them where they are.  It took me about 10 minutes. Just the amount of time that it took the cinnamon rolls to raise before I put them in the oven for breakfast.

I threw away the old phone books.  Yes, phone books are also stored up with the cookbooks.  It's the easiest place.  I also found a Baby and Toddler Foods book that I'll give to the parents of the kids I babysit. They may find it useful or not.  Don't remember using anything out of it.

Hope you all have a great weekend.

Steph

Friday, September 14, 2012

Day Four

The cupboards above and between the stove and fridge, excluding the cookbooks

I just had to remind myself today of why I am de-cluttering.  It is NOT so that I can go buy new stuff.  It IS so that I can find the stuff I have and use it wisely.  When I am out shopping these days, I think am I buying something that I will be getting rid of in a few weeks or months, something that will sit on my shelves and hide the things I really use and need.

So I tackled my pots and pans cupboard which mostly just needed straightening.  Nothing to get rid of there.  And then the cupboard above the fridge.  I'm afraid it collects everything that needs a home when company comes - everything in the kitchen that is.  So today I found the homes for all these poor, lost things.

Things to get rid of:
  • light bulb that doesn't work
  • coffee pot that won't work with our coffee maker
I think that was about it today.  Hope you are finding the things that need homes.  Just think you'll be able to find them and then won't be out buying new of what you already had.

Making the most of today,
Steph

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Day 3 of De-cluttering

Well, Day 3 for me was the lower cupboards in my kitchen.  Wow, I found so much.  I definitely made the 10 mark a few times over. 

Things I found:
  • Sorted all the containers I have and removed numerous lids that had no container.  I saved one extra lid just in case I find a missing container.  They'll probably be found in the sandbox or as a cat's dish or something and I won't really want to use them.
  • Coffee can lids (3)  We use the coffee containers but not the lids.  They are great for dispensing chicken feed etc.
  • a bundt pan that is way to small for our familly.  I have a regular sized one that works better for us.
  • Grill tools (yes, more) that we have the equivalent of.
  • Silverware that matches nothing (we already have two full sets)
Now my "Tupperware" shelves are organized and I found some things I'd been missing again.   Oh, another thing that may be an incentive to you, it took me all less than a half hour to organize and get the kitchen back to normal.

Enjoy your day.  A few minutes clearing our your cupboards will help you when you're looking for containers to put lunches in etc.  If you work and need some time with your kids, play the matching game with them while they discuss their day with you.  Have them sort the containers with lids that go with them.  If they do this, they'll be more apt to want to keep it that way when they put dishes away. 

Making the most of today,
Steph

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

De-cluttering Day Two

Well, we're on Day Two and I'm re-vamping my list.  I found that I like to de-clutter by cupboard as opposed to by things.  So there are 7 days in the kitchen.  I did all my drawers in one day, but today I did the top cupboards on two walls.  The cupboards over the stove and fridge I'll do another day.  The reason I want to do this, is because I want to clean (if necessary) the cupboards I'm cleaning.

The goal is 10 things, and as she says in her blog some days you will find 10 and other days you won't.  Depending on how you count it, this is a less-than-10 day.  Here's what I found:
  • food processor (I think it's not working and so have not been using it.)  I have already replaced it with a Pampered Chef tool that takes up way less space.  I needed it for slicing and shredding, but the Simple Slicer works best for me.  So I'll see if it works and if it does, I'll give it to our community thrift store.
  • coffee filters that do not fit our coffee maker.  Throwing them away, because we haven't had a coffee maker that fits those filters for a long time
  • and a salsa jar that I thought might work for canning (it says Mason on it), but found out that the rings don't work, so I don't need it.
And there you have it only three things, but if we count the pieces to my food processor and my coffee filters there's at least 10.  But that might be cheating, don't you think?  ;)

Here's to the second day of de-cluttering.  I'm also reading "31 days to a clean house".  I think that one will be a perpetual reader for a time. 

Making the most of today
Steph

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

De-Cluttering Day One

I just found a new site that really takes the plan work out of de-cluttering.  I am going on an 8 week journey of de-cluttering and I hope I inspire some of you to do it too.  If you would like to join me, check out this site for the details http://www.keeperofthehome.org/2012/06/8-weeks-to-a-less-cluttered-home.html.  And then follow me as we go through each day.

I must admit that I thought this day would be easy.  I've been following FLYLady for awhile and I have been trying to de-clutter.  Today is cleaning out the kitchen drawers.  I only have eight, so I thought that I wouldn't be able to find ten things.

As I went through the drawers, I thought about the three things that she mentioned in her blog.  "Is this beautiful, useful and worth keeping?"  I found more than 10 things.

All of my things I threw in the trash today because I felt that they were either too old or not worth anything to anyone as they were.  Here are my items:
  • 1 paintbrush (an old child's paintbrush)
  • 1 metal pancake turner ( I don't want my kids using it on my good pans, so out it goes.)
  • 4 old birthday candles,
  • a matching game that was cut out of a magazine
  • 4 rolls of film (my oldest doesn't want to spend the money to get them developed, and I don't want to keep looking at them)
  • 2 safety pins (yes, I know, I should've taken them to my sewing bag, but I was too lazy)
  • a cough syrup measurer (I was saving it in case we lose the one that comes with our cough syrup, but not anymore)
  • a grill tool that we have a double for (convincing myself I DO NOT NEED two)
  • a measuring spoon that has no others to match and I have two other sets
  • a Tupperware lid for a cup - you may think that's crazy, but I have no need for those lids for cups and no it's not the sippy cup lids.

Found: the 15 pound piece to my canner lid that I've been searching for for awhile.

Does this inspire you?  Go clean out some drawers in your kitchen!!! Did you find 10?  What thing did you find that you've been missing?  Of your ten things were any hard choices or things you found hilarious that you have been saving such an item? 

Making the most of today,
Steph

A link to a cool music store http://www.resoundschool.com/

Monday, September 10, 2012

Study group

I'm very excited!!! Last week I started thinking of an idea.  I think the Lord placed it on my heart.  I guess we'll see.  I feel that women in this area need to be encouraging each other in the area of self-discipline.  How can we be the women God wants us to be?  What does it take?  I really feel that for each person it will look different, but there will be something for each one. 

I firmly believe that each one should be disciplined.  Paul says, "I beat my body to keep it under submission."  I'm afraid that I need more of that in my life.  A lot more.  I tend to get overwhelmed with life and want to just give up.  So, up goes the feet and on goes the computer and voila I can avoid everything that's piling up around me. 

Obviously it doesn't work very well.  Because things keep piling up and I'm not doing anything about it.  But what I'm finding through FLYLady mostly is that as I work on things a bit each day, I can keep up and then I can put my feet up. 

I'm hoping a lot of people can come join us at my kitchen table on Thursday nights.  If you live around here, we're starting up on the 27th at around 7:30 or so.  Please let me know if you can come.  I'll still be keeping track of my kiddos upstairs and I'm sure the house won't be perfect. 

That is an issue that caused me a bit of panic.  How can I lead a group of ladies in this aspect if I don't have it all together?  Well, duh!!!!  That's the point.  If we had it all together then we wouldn't need such a thing.  I am hoping some come who DO have it all together, because then they can give us pointers and ideas. 

I think we all have ideas just need to see that we aren't the only ones struggling.  I have a vision for this to last longer than a year, but each group would take a year.  I'm thinking 7 months (Sept - Nov and Jan-April) and each month will have a different topic.  Obviously we're starting a bit late, so we'll do about three weeks per topic in order to get on track.  I don't have everything figured out.  But we'll work it out as we go.

I'm planning on starting the first month/topic with making notebooks and getting us ready for the study and preparing to practically work together.  We'll do some projects and some games, maybe not both every week.  I think it will inspire each of us to grow closer to the Lord and we'll spend less time on housework because we'll be keeping up and because we'll find the things we need.