60 gates road

Baby Steps

A lot of times, I've discovered that when I get unhappy with my house, it's because I'm feeling weighed down.  When I've let things drag on and just continue to be messy and cluttered.  When this happens, I feel myself being bummed out and unmotivated because of all of my stuff.  This begins a vicious cycle of my productivity slowing down until I am just barely doing what I need to get by.  This is definitely not a good cycle to get drawn into and after I get to this point I am anxious to clean up and sometimes clean out something.

I don't know if it's because I'm a woman and I have these mothering tendencies or feel the need to take care of everything myself, but when my house is a total mess, I just feel like I can't do anything until I've taken care of the messy parts.  Welllllll when my house is full of stuff that is just strewn everywhere it is kind of hard to do what I really want to do.  I have decided that the way to beat this cycle is by taking baby steps to build a good routine.  

When I am at work, I clean off my desk at the end o the day.  I usually make a list of what needs to be done for the next day and I put up my unfinished work in a tray so I can pick back up where I am the following day.  It makes a difference in my productivity coming into the office the next day when my desk is all clean versus when it is covered in papers and work.  Plus it looks so much better than when it is covered in paperwork.

So...baby steps.  I've been (trying) to really do this in my kitchen daily.  But it is so much easier to let the dishes continue to pile up and I know I am guilty of letting the pots "soak" overnight.  My mother always, always cleaned the kitchen every night.  This was not something that stuck with m and I really wish it had.  So I try to do this, but it doesn't always happen.  

One thing that I have successfully done is keeping my bathroom counter straight!  Because I use the bathroom ever day to fix my hair and make up, it is easy to just leave it all out on the counter.  It is especially easy since I basically live by myself for half the year and rarely have people over.  So yeah, I consider it an accomplishment that I have put all my makeup and hair dryer in the bathroom closet daily.  Just please. No one look in the closet!

By doing just these small things where I pick up after myself when I'm done, I can feel my spirit lifting up and my heart being lighter when I look around my house.  It's still a little hard.  Like, my dining table chairs are still on top of the table from when I ran my roomba.  And the clean towels are still in the dryer.  But that's why they're called baby steps. :)

an evening together :]

so...I have a bad habit of watching tv.  I hate that I watch so much of it.  It is truly a brain rotter.  I could just sit there and just mindlessly watch it for a whole day.  And then I feel horrible afterwards.  I began knitting again in the process of seeking a better way to spend my time. Then I discovered podcasts, which began my love affair, but I can discus that some other time.

Then one evening after Kevin and I had eaten supper, we were just sitting on the couch together in the quiet.  He was looking on his cell phone at cars and trucks, I was knitting.  I had read somewhere that week about a couple who had sort of a date night where they picked out like a playlist and they just kind of hung out together.  So for something that was different from watching tv, which is what we would normally do, I suggested doing something similar.  

So he created a Pandora radio station for us to listen to and I kept on with my knitting.  We occasionally talked with each other but not constantly.  It was really nice to just sit and not have the constant mind-numbing noise of the tv going.  Then I got to thinking and somehow came to the realization that Kevin probably does this more than I do.  When I asked him, he told me that, yes, when he is at work he often sits in his room listening to music and looking at the Internet.  

After I found that out, I felt kind of silly for thinking of how great an idea I had for us to do that!  But he said he liked that we were doing it so that made me feel better.  I can't wait for him to be home again so we can have another evening together.

home improvements {kitchen}

Ok, so this past hitch that Kevin has been gone, I have been a busy girl! Really I've been busy these past two months! I have been working on my house for the past few weeks and it has left me drained. Oh and I was quite sick for a few days in there somewhere. BUt now, i am recovered and this past week I painted my kitchen cabinets! We have lived in our house for two and half years now and after the initial remodeling of the house, we have not really done much work on it. We've just been kinda living here. It was like we just gave up. Recently, something has kicked us into gear and we have done some good work so far! I started out with painting the guest bathroom. It was pretty bad, I thought I wanted to paint it like, this neutral color, buuuuuut yeah, that's not for me. So I painted it a dark blue and there is like a chair rail and that is painted this gray color that I can't remember the name. The kitchen is the most recent change, and let me tell you, it has made such a difference that I don't even notice it! What I mean is that the color of my kitchen as now such a good match and it looks so good that it doesn't even stand out. To me, that is the best kind of change. Do you know what I mean?
I'm always looking for ways to improve my life, to make it better. I've even begun to really think about how I do things and try to see what I can do better. I begin by looking at my life and try to pinpoint what I don't like or makes me unhappy. Once I can figure this out, I usually think, ok, something needs to change. I don't really know what has changed in myself in the last few months, but I have really begun to study myself. Like, when I'm trying something, I write down what I'm doing and then after a few weeks, I reevaluate myself and brainstorm new ways to do what I'm doing if my way is not working. Even as I write this, I'm thinking to myself, where was this diligent person in school? I sure could have used this commitment. But I really feel like it's working! And a lot of the changes are really such a good fit, I can't remember how I did anything before! To me, that's how I know I have made a successful improvement. Like my kitchen, for example. I rearranged several cabinets a few months ago and I have not regretted the change in the least. And, except for the knowledge that I made this change, I don't even think of how it was ever different because of how much more smoothly everything goes. So yeah, painting my cabinets was definitely a great, great improvement. I really hated the color they were previously and I hated them every time I looked at them! Now, they are just there. part of the room, they don't stand out anymore and that makes me glad. I believe that our house will always be a work-in-progress, but for now, my kitchen is one more step closer to being completed.

I regret that we did not get many pictures of our house before we began the remodel, but I do have some and for the most part, the whole house pretty much looked the same.

Before:Elizabeth's Camera 139


this is right when first began working on the houseeeee and it was somewhat painted.


Midway:IPhone 11.1.12 085 IPhone 11.1.12 081


Here is our kitchen in 2012, we finally got the backsplash (tin) added and everything was somewhat complete.



This is what my kitchen looks like right now!  I think it just looks nice and everything flows well.  I plan to take good pictures with a camera other than my iPhone. eventually.  Until then, this will suffice!