Tuesday, January 3, 2012


Let all your things have their places; let each part of your business have its time. -Ben Franklin

January’s Value: ORDER

I crave order. I love label baskets, straight rows, even edges, clean floors, crisp sheets, completed lists, and parallel structure.

Order makes me feel calm, in control, and motivated.

Before you start thinking I am the person you love to hate, let me assure you—just because I love order doesn’t mean I am a master of organization.
As a matter of fact, I have spent the better part of my time as a mommy feeling anxious, out of sorts, and exhausted.

When I was pregnant and in extreme nesting mode, I cleaned and organized until my 38 week pregnant belly just wouldn’t let me waddle on. I even cleaned the glass shower doors with a toothbrush while sitting on my orthopedic stool. I’ve learned there is another reason we nest—Mother Nature knows it will be another good 12-18 months before you even think about getting on your hands and knees and scrubbing anything. Nesting is a way of banking some organization while hoping that your deposits outlast the daily withdrawals that living with children exact.

Eighteen months post-nesting, I can finally say we are in the red. The junk drawer had filled again. The counter top was long lost to the ravages of paper. The babies’ drawers were still full of 0-6 month socks, which ultimately ended up on their feet at least once a week. Things, smelly things, were growing under my car seat. Our HOA was already preparing a letter for the Christmas decorations they just knew would stay up until July (since we still have the pumpkin sitting by the trash can).

Oh, the measures of the madness were all there.

So yesterday, Marty and I spent our day off getting our house in order. Okay, so I did the ordering and he climbed up and down the ladder, tackled Christmas lights, and made several trips to the dump.

By last night, I was able to revel in my newly-recreated order.

I was so inspired that I woke up this morning and made the bed. *Cue sounds of angelic singing.*

I know. Order doesn’t sound like a fun way to start 2012. Here’s how I justify it:

More order will eventually give me more time to tackle the other areas of my life: like passion, adventure, and service.

A post on order just wouldn’t be right without the requisite list, so here you go.

A List of Small Changes I Have Already Made:

Unsubscribed from email: I could write a whole post on how excited I got about this small change! I was sick of all the junk email filling my inbox. You know, not spam, but all those emails you get from groups you’re in, stores where you shop, places you’ve visited. UNSUBSCRIBE. If I want them, I know where to find them.

Put everything in its place:
After my crafting binge of December 2011, I had a bunch of craft supplies sitting in the study just waiting to be eaten by curious toddlers. Yesterday, I organized them and put them in old shoe boxes (that I had been saving to recycle).

Labeled everything: I finally bought some containers for my flour and sugar—much neater than the leaking bags I had before. As a reward, the organizing gods provided this sweet deal on Very Jane this morning:

Tossed expired non-perishables:
As I tossed a can of peas that expired in 2005, Marty asked, “I thought nonperishables didn’t perish?" Evidently they do when you save them longer than you have known your spouse.

Cleared the counter: And dared anyone to put any stray item on it.

Renewed commitment to basket at bottom of stairs: items that need to go upstairs get dropped in the basket and one of us (usually me) takes it up when we go (exercise was not on our list for the new year).

Dumped kitchen junk drawer: And found these. Yes, that is a pacifier. No, I never let my kids use it. And, no. I don’t know where it came from. Yes, I realize that’s scary.

Because I know there are more order-hungry mamas out there, I will be sharing some more order opportunities as the month goes on: tips for organizing your closet, how I finally updated baby books for twins, and how I plan to cope with the pain of lost socks.

Thanks for all of the positive, encouraging comments about 12 in 2012. Several of you have expressed an interest in participating in some way. First, there are no hard and fast rules. Link up when you can, when you feel like it. Take on 12 values or just one. Share how you are accomplishing your resolutions. I am putting up a linky for today's post in case any of you would like to link up your resolutions or plans for the new year.

MaMe Musings


jpattencoble said...

Love your value for the month... wish I had more of it. Thanks for using your gift of order to help get me in order!

Beth said...

Love this!! I have been working on finding more 'order' around here as well.

While it can be tiring, hard work, it is so rewarding to look into that closet (in the spare bedroom that I had been cramming things into and slamming the door as quickly as possible for the last year or so) and see only useful important things I truly want hanging or neatly stacked on the shelf.

More tips! Please!

KERRY said...

OK that is scary about the unknown pacifier owner lol and peas in a can from before you met your husband? That one is funny!!
I love how you mentioned order, I too feel somewhat 'better' when everything is in order but it just doesn't seem to stay that way :(
I like this months goal, you may have to be my inspirational guide/motivation lol

Tasha said...

I just linked up my post from this morning. I hope it works. Our January value is so much alike. Thanks for hosting this!!!

jen@ living a full life said...

Oh boy, I'm embarrassed to say I've still yet to get my Christmas decorations put away! That's the bad news.Are we doing a month on motivation??sigh...
The good news is all the bins are really really customized for my stuff so when they go back I'll look like I'm really organized!YEH!

sarita edgerton said...

Nice! I usually do my cabinets and I added my pantry this year. It is my January list of order. I wish I could get to my scrapping table but alas I am not that motivated! I did organize my home school stuff! Now to tackle the Christmas decorations!

Samantha said...

I love order too, and I can't wait until we move into our new house to get everything the way I want it!!! My pinterest is full of photos of good organization tips.

RoryBore said...

I really should have read this post before I went around the house with big empty post Christmas box dumping in all kinds of "stuff" I want to exit my house.
It was a great theory...sort of some progress; except there was no Order to my Madness....and now I just have a box full of toys, books, and other junk that I don't know what to do with.
Do you think MacDonald's has a recycle program for all their Happy Meal toys? Cause that would be very helpful.

Dvr Dame said...

Yes another organizational freak...okay sort of. But sorry I don't do resolutions I kinda suck at them lol.

Kristy said...

Ok, you've got me all excited. I love the canisters and the whole unsubscribe thing for email! Ugh!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...