Thank You For Saving Me

Shiny SinkDear FlyLady,

I wanted to share an achievement with you that I know you’ll be delighted to hear.  I have a lovely kitchen back!

My kitchen is very ‘compact’ (only 6ft by 8ft) and houses a cooker, dishwasher, washing machine, fridge, and microwave.  The freezer has to be stored elsewhere in the house, so there is very little room for storage.  The one ‘feature’ of my kitchen is a beautiful purpose-made pine shelving unit, a bit like the top of a dresser cabinet, but mounted on the wall.  The kitchen has always been a scene of CHAOS (like the rest of the house) and the shelf unit was always cluttered and untidy.  I always used the excuse that it was a ‘cooks kitchen’ and far too small for me.

One week whilst I was finishing the baby steps, I spent 15 min everyday decluttering the kitchen and sorting out the cupboards, throwing out ALL of the out-of-date food and things that I never use.  I invested in some inexpensive glass jars which I use to keep my dry goods (pasta, rice, breakfast cereals) and these were placed on the pine shelves.  They work like a treat and I can clearly see what I have and when I need to re-order (no more food being shoved in a cupboard going out of date because I’ve over ordered- again!).  They make the pine unit look stunning, and it’s also practical.

My kitchen is small but now very organized with a shiny sink!  I now love cooking in my kitchen, as everything I need is at arms length and easy to find.  I plan my menu a week in advance (when I get the grocery shopping done) so I don’t order things unless I know I’m going to use them. I didn’t need a larger kitchen, I just needed to learn to FLY in it.

The rest of my house is slowly coming together, but when I feel disheartened I walk into my kitchen and look at my pine shelves and my shiny sink and smile!

Thank you and Bless you for rescuing me from a life of CHAOS!

FlyBaby in the UK

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Time in a Bottle

Dear Friends,

How many times a day do these words come out of your mouth? “I don’t have time!” Just those words and the attitude that produces them wastes the time that we all have; we all have the same hours in a day. It is how we choose to use them that can either help us to feel peace or throw us into a state of CHAOS! We have a choice!

Have you ever noticed that the more hurried you are; the more you forget. Wouldn’t it be nice to walk into your bathroom and open up your medicine cabinet and take a dose of time in a bottle! The problem with having time in a bottle would be that we would become addicted to it very fast! That could be fun! The only problem with that is there is no way to manufacture time! OR is there???

I believe that I can help you keep your bottle of time filled to the brim! All it takes is strapping on your wings to FLY! We are going to flit around like little bees gathering tiny bits of time. This is not going to seem like work at all because we are going to have fun in the process. Time FLYs when you are having fun!

If you were to calculate how much time is wasted every day looking for things in your clutter you would be surprised at how fast the minutes could fill up your bottle. You know the items you are constantly searching for: Car Keys, purse, bills and papers. What about all the things you forget because you are in a hurry! Those minutes cost us precious time too. A few simple routines can help you reap those minutes and you won’t even realize it!

We all hate that feeling of running late. It starts when we have trouble getting up. Have you ever noticed that the more hurried you are the less gets done and you stop thinking; so even more time is wasted because you forget things and can’t find them. I want to help you get rid of that “I’m late!” and “I don’t have time!” habit!

A few minutes in the evening will help you feel calmer in the morning. When you are not stressed you can think and do without the pressure of time! I am going to write you a prescription for more time! You have to fill it though! There is no compounding pharmacy in the world that can give you this bottle of time!

1. After dinner pick out your clothes for tomorrow; the whole outfit!
2. Go to bed with your sink clean and shiny!
3. Put items you will need tomorrow on a launch pad!
4. Set your alarm for 15 minutes before the rest of the family.
5. Get into bed at a decent hour and go to sleep!

Then in the morning do these things.

1. Get up when the alarm goes off; no hitting snooze! Put your alarm across the room.
2. Make your bed as soon as your feet hit the floor.
3. Go directly to the bathroom, shower and get dressed to shoes. No excuses!
4. Then eat breakfast, take you medicine and supplements.
5. Help the rest of the family and walk out the door on time!

With this prescription you will find that your stress level decreases and you will have more minutes and hours! Your before bed routine is the most important of the day! It can put that time back into your bottle and you will be able use some of those precious minutes for you! Be careful, the peace you feel is very addictive!

When you hear yourself say, “I don’t have time!” Change that to say I have 2 minutes and see what you can do! Set your timer! Your perfectionism is the reason you say those words. You really mean! I don’t have time to do it right! You do have time to do something! Anything is better than nothing!

Are you ready to FLY!

FlyLady

Your Control Journal is your guide to releasing your stress.

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What Do You Do With Your Clutter?

Hello FlyLady,

What do you do with your “clutter”? Do you give it a kiss and throw it in the trash? Or send it to the thrift store?

I have clutter. I am reading your emails and am ready to be reborn ;). We are planning to move very soon and do not plan to take everything with us so I have to declutter. I know I have a lot to go through, so what do I do after I collect it all?

Holly

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Dear Holly,

I am so happy that you are beginning to get rid of your clutter. Please do not do too much too fast! I don’t want you to crash and burn. This is why we ask you to spend  15 minutes a day getting rid of your clutter. We like to babystep our way through the clutter. We did not collect it all at once. Your home did not get messy in a day and it is not going to be clutter free overnight.

One of our FLYing Lessons is to declutter 15 minutes a day. In the  FlyShop, our  Declutter Kit and our Timer are great tools to facilitate this task.
declutter kit
We have three types of clutter:

  • Give Away
  • Put Away
  • Throw Away

We like to play games and establish routines to get rid of clutter and keep us focused:

  • 27 Fling Boogie
  • 5 Minute Room Rescue
  • Hot Spot Fire Drill
  • Daily Missions
  • Weekly Zones

The clutter that needs to be given away has to get out of your house right then! Do not pile up an extra bedroom. Do not fill up your garage. Do not place it by your front door.

This means as soon as your timer goes off, go take your clutter to your car! This way the next time you are out, you can drop it off at your favorite resale charity. My favorite is Habitat for Humanity. Last year we built our first house. Habitat has 750 Restores all over the USA and Canada. If you don’t have a Restore near you then pick your favorite charity. Keep in mind that Habitat does not take clothing. They usually have a Goodwill Donation Box on their premises.

Please do not donate items that need to be thrown away. We need to be responsible for our own trash. Charities cannot afford to dispose of your trash.

Please pace yourself when you declutter. If you take babysteps you will not feel as violated. Just think how you would feel if someone came into your house and got rid of all your stuff. This is why I am not fond of those decluttering shows. Spend 15 minutes a day and before you know it your clutter will be gone.

It took me three months of doing a 27 Fling Boogie, three times a day; morning, afternoon, and evening. I had three rules during the three months of my decluttering: the clutter had to go to the car immediately, when I got to the charity resale shop, I could not go in and buy anything, and I was not allowed to go to yard sales.

It is the consistency of decluttering every day that is going to help you get rid of the CHAOS and Clutter.

You can do this!

FlyLady

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My Daughter Wants Friends Over

Hi FlyLady,I just wanted to say that I joined your mailing list about 2 weeks ago after a recommendation.  Well, for the first week I laughed at all the emails, refused to believe any of it, sounds like someone just wanting me to buy a load of stuff I don’t need.  Then I read the bit at the end – you are not behind, just jump in bit, that really hit me. It screams to me.

So, I have been suffering severe depression for 3 months, house is awful, have a 5 year old, just got too much. We broke up for the holidays yesterday and last week I made a huge list – like 4 pages – of all my jobs. I am going through them and today I managed to do my daughters room in 1 afternoon!!! Its amazing. Ok the windows need another go over – but I have lived here 5 years and never cleaned a window! I have hoovered, dusted, got 2 bags for charity shop and 2 bags of clothes, gone through drawers and wardrobes, hoovered bottoms of toy chests and done so much! I did it half hour in there, half hour out, etc and got it done in 4 hours – including my breaks. If you had told me I could do it all in 1 afternoon I would have laughed at you! But I feel amazing, empowered for tomorrow when I do the kitchen, Saturday is the hall and stairs!

I am excited as my daughter wants friends over and up til now I’ve had to say no is just too messy and embarrassing – but by the end of next week the house (apart from my room) will be fit for people!!!

Thank you so much for getting me started on my huge journey. I now read all your emails and want to buy your bits – but being a single mum studying I cannot yet afford them!

Katie x

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Keep on the Sunny Side

Dear Friends,

In the middle of night I wrote something down again. This is becoming a habit too. When I got up this morning I found the note in the bathroom. It is almost like I get a gift each morning. I could not wait to see what is going to come from it.

The words I wrote down were; Keep on the sunny side of the street. I looked it up on Google and lo and behold it is the words to a Frank Sinatra song. I can’t remember ever hearing it and I don’t know the tune, but the words have other meanings too.

One evening I walked down the main street of our little town. The sun was setting; one side of the street was in shadows and the other in bright sunshine. When I got up this morning and saw these words I remembered this picture.

In the sun we are bathed in warmth and love, while the shadows make us feel cool or maybe even cold. Then I got to thinking about what we do to ourselves. It is our choice to walk on the sunny side or we can drudge along in the shadows and hide from ourselves and our feelings.

I don’t know about you, but I am tired of hiding! When I began to FLY, I started to come out of the shadows and into the light of love. This is the love that I have for myself. Every day that love glows brighter. When I take care of my body I am taking care of my spirit too. My being needs a comfortable place to live and be loved. My body is the sacred place that is me. I am not going to eat food that is poison to my body!

All of this love didn’t happen overnight. It took lots of babysteps and to tell the truth, I take a new one each day. With each little step I FLY higher and love myself more.

There are other things that put us on the sunny side of the street.

Saying positive things instead of whining
Getting enough sleep
Eating meals and drink your water
Taking breaks instead of pushing to exhaustion
Giving your children hugs and not harsh words
Limit your volunteering
Let go of your perfectionism
Please and thank you are better than nags
Let go of your martyred attitude
Don’t pile on to your duties.
Take BabySteps
Use your routines to guide you through your day
Plan for tomorrow instead of putting out fires
Go to the doctor and dentist for check ups
Most of all be kind to yourself and others

If you are doing these things, you will be walking on the sunny side of the street. When are you going to step out of those dark looming shadows into the light of your own love! It doesn’t take much, any one of these babysteps will set you on the right path if you will just step out of the shadows in faith and start to FLY!

Are you ready to join me in the warmth of the sunshine of your love?

FlyLady

Are you on the sunny side of the street? I want to hear how you keep on the sunny side!

Email me  FlyLady@flylady.net with SUNNY SIDE in the subject line.

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House Fairy: Attention-Getter With Wings

Dear House Fairy,

Thank you House Fairy for your wonderful videos that have helped me and my children tremendously. You know you never really said anything that I didn’t already say, but because YOU said it, my kids are now listening.  : ) Even though you have only been visiting for two weeks now, the first day I told them about it they ran to their room and cleaned it up. I don’t expect perfection, but my daughter Abby age 4 and my sons Killian, 8 and Dylan 3 years old do (in my opinion) a great job.

Thank you so much.
Rebecca

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House Fairy here: I wish it weren’t true that kids will listen to a teacher, an aunt, grandmother or neighbor more readily than their own beloved mothers and fathers. I guess parents’ voices become so familiar they lose their effect over time.  That’s why I’m here! I’m the attention getter with wings! So many parents have experienced the amazing results from my videos and of course my “surprise” inspections.

Even when we grow up and become, adults we still put out more effort in cleaning our homes when we know we’re going to have company. Children get that same feeling when they know I’m going to come while they’re asleep or at school or at a friend’s house and I’m going to inspect their room and leave a surprise if it’s neat and tidy. It’s just plain magic!  To learn more about the House Fairy program, Click Here!

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Can We Change Things Around?

BasicWeeklyPlanDear FlyLady,

I was wondering if I had to do the  Basic Weekly Plan just the way I see it on the Homepage when I log on.. For example, I see:

 

Monday is the day we do our Weekly Home Blessing.
Tuesday is a free day.
Wednesday is Anti-Procrastination day.
Thursday is errand day.
Friday is date night.
Saturday is Family fun day.
Sunday is Renew Your Spirit.

It would seem odd for me to do these things on alternate days when I see something different on my computer.

Thanks,
Becca

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Dear Becca,

The reason that we set up a Basic Weekly Plan is because it was easier for me to mentor everyone when we were all on the same page. I have always said that you can adapt your plan to fit your family. You may want to stick with the way we do it at first, just so you will get the hang of how our system works.

Let’s just say you have a different schedule for work where your days off were on Tuesday and Wednesday. Those two days would be your weekend. You are more than welcome to change things up a bit. Weekly Home Blessing can be done over seven days. You don’t have to put together a whole hour. Some of us with busy schedules actually prefer to do one blessing a day.

Make a list of things that need to be done each week and try and divide those tasks into the days of the week. Set up a Basic Weekly Plan for yourself from those items. I put mine on Post-It Notes for months when I first got organized.

If you have not made your Control Journal then you don’t have a plan for your home. With it, your family can see exactly what you do around your home. We have all the directions on our website, but if you have allowed your perfectionism to get in the way of building yours, then just get the workbook Control Journal. It makes it so easy for you to just fill in the blanks.

FlyLady

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Anti-Procrastination Day

Dear Friends,

Today is Anti-Procrastination Day! What have you been putting off?

How many times a day do you allow your perfectionism to paralyze you! You know exactly what I am talking about. You hear that nasty little voice in your head all the time. I don’t have time right now. YOU DON’T HAVE TIME FOR WHAT? To do it RIGHT! To do it like your momma did!

We are not good judges of time! In our heads we think emptying the dishwasher will take hours when it only takes 3 minutes!

Our perfectionism/procrastination also hurts us in other ways. We keep putting off going to the doctor because we don’t have time! We don’t place an order for something we know will help us and then all of a sudden it is gone and we start to beat ourselves up over our procrastination again.

I live by the Do it Now Principle! When something needs to be done and if it is not done then you will feel bad; this is when I do it! Think about putting a fresh roll of toilet paper in the bathroom. We only think of it when we are in there. Guess who usually gets left with an empty roll. YOU! Your procrastination has hurt you again.

Our minds are going 90 miles an hour. We can think of more things to do in 5 minutes than we can do in a lifetime. Let’s channel some of that power into action by Doing It Now. When you find yourself using this principle more often you are going to surprise yourself! This is not getting sidetracked! It is staying focused and accomplishing something so we don’t have to beat ourselves up later!

Have you been putting something off? One day soon we will run out of our calendars and there you will be begging for one and beating yourself up because of your procrastination. You do have time; if you will just do what needs to be done and don’t put it off another day! Just think, this will put an end to those nasty voices in your head!

There are many of you who are procrastinating about shining your sink! This is the habit that changed my life! Please give it a try! It won’t take that long! I know you think I am crazy when your house is a mess and you have a to do list longer than your arm and I am telling you to shine your sink. Apply the Do It Now principle and see how good you will feel!

Send me an email and tell me what you accomplished today in honor of Anti-Procrastination Day! It can something small or big, it does not matter! Don’t let perfectionism get in the way of Do It Now!

FlyLady

Have you been procrastinating about about getting your FlyLady Calendar? Have you been trying to make-do with small blocks for writing down your family’s busy schedule.

 

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How Do I Use A Feather Duster?

Feather DusterDear FlyLady,

I’ve written before, and this may be a silly question, but I have been wanting to buy the duster for sometime, but am limited on my budget.

I hate to dust. It was always something I was forced to do because my mom hated to dust. I want to make if fun for both me and my kids. I just don’t really know the first thing about feather dusters as I was always made to use Pledge and a rag.

Any feedback is welcome.

Thanks,
Trying to FLY in PA

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Dear Trying to FLY in PA,

We all know about being forced to dust the way our mother’s wanted us to do it! We do not have to dust like our mothers did! We can do it our way!  Feather dusters are an amazing tool that helps us to have fun, and at the same time, get the job done!

They don’t just move the dust around, they pick it up with all of their thousands of tiny feathers. Each plume is made up of these little feathers. They do all the work, so you don’t have to!

I like to hold my duster as if it were a pencil! Then, with little quick flicks of the duster, the feathers surround the items on your tables and pick up the dust so you don’t have to pick up the item. Did you know that dust does not get under the items on your tables, just around them?

If you use your duster every day, you will never have to see dust again. Isn’t that what our routines do for us?! When we develop habits, our homes clean themselves. Just a few short minutes in the morning and then in the evening along with picking up after yourself and your house can be on automatic pilot too!

Our new FlyLady Feather Duster is a great tool to help you bless your home. Head on over to the FlyShop to purchase yours.

FlyLady

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I Was Having A Rotten Day

FlyLady Ultimate TimerDear FlyLady,

Yesterday I had a rotten day. I felt like everything that could go wrong, did go wrong. By the end of the day, I was grumpy, tired, and I had a huge headache.

I looked at my sink full of dishes, and I just wanted skip it and to go to bed. But a little voice said “Just 7 minutes!” Ok, 7 minutes, and that’s it – whether the sink is shiny or not! (Like I said, grumpy!)

So I set my timer and started working. I hummed my favorite hymn (Simple Gifts) while I worked, and it reminded that I have an awful lot to be grateful for, even on a lousy day. I have a job when many are out of work, I have a loving DH and an adorable DS, a safe place to live, etc.

finished the sink, started the dishwasher, and wiped down the counters. As I was tossing my dishrag in the laundry, I was startled by my timer! I had forgotten that I set it LOL!

Well, I went to bed feeling much better, and this morning I could start my new day without having any “leftovers” from yesterday to deal with. It was so much easier to move on and be positive with my shiny sink smiling at me.

Thank you, FlyLady, for being my “little voice” that tells me I can do it!

Rebecca in Austin

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FlyLady here: I am so proud of Rebecca. She turned her rotten day into a good day! The timer can be a magical tool. It will get you started and before you know it, you have accomplished a lot.

Pull out your timer and start using it. If you don’t have this amazing little tool, we offer one in the FlyShop that beeps or vibrates!

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