So Glad to Have a Daily Checklist

I often blame my chaotic home, scatter-brainedness, lack of ability to organize paper clutter, etc. etc. etc. on my creativity.

I’m probably flattering myself, but I’ve decided to be okay with that delusion.

I love getting in the creative “zone.” Ideas start flying and everything else disappears as my focus zeroes in on whatever project I’m working on.

Of course, the problem is that the “everything else” that disappears includes any focus whatsoever on things like . . . the house, cooking supper, or whatever else can wait in the name of jumping on this moment of creativity.

The other aspect of being creative is that I love the “moment of inspiration.” I’ve told people before that I have to wait for this moment to come. That it can’t be forced.

I really believed it when I said it, and I still generally think that way.

But I’m wrong. I know I’m wrong because these moments come, and I make something of them, when I have a real/true/not-just-rolling-around-in-my-head goal, and a plan for achieving that goal.

I think about how I’d love to decorate some certain area, but I rarely have a true moment of inspiration until I know that I’m hosting a party in a week. I love to take pictures of my kids, but I rarely dress them in complementary outfits and take them out into nature for a photo-shoot until it’s time to give Grandma a gift or make a calendar for all the relatives.

I love to write, but I generally don’t write a script until I have an actual project that needs a script. Of course, that’s one of the reasons I love blogging. I’m “forced” to write everyday which keeps the creative juices flowing.

So what’s the point?

I used to depend on inspiration to do housework. And since the inspiration didn’t happen much until I either had people coming over, or suddenly looked up to see that the house was a wreck, it really wasn’t a good housekeeping plan.

For example, this morning brought us back into the routine. The boys had a half-day last Thursday and were off of school on Friday. I’ve had two weeks of two different shows going on. The house has fallen down, down, and further down on my priority list. And so, as of last night, it was officially in the “total disaster” state.

This is nothing new to me. I’ve been here many times. And the main problem in the past has been that I depended on inspiration. The house would be in such a terrible state overall that I wouldn’t know where to start. And in my frustration, one foot sticking to the kitchen floor would inspire me to mop. And of course, this would mean finding the mop, a bucket, clearing all the random stuff off of the floor, etc. And I would often lose focus in the middle of all of it, and by the end of the day my kitchen floor might or might not be mopped, but either way, the house wouldn’t look much different from the way it was when the day started.

Today, I wasn’t feeling inspired. I didn’t wake up with some kind of special energy to get the house cleaned up. In fact I got up four minutes before I needed to get the kids up.

But I didn’t fret about the lack of inspiration. I just started doing what I knew I was supposed to do. What was on the plan.

I emptied the dishwasher. Even though I only had four minutes, I got started anyway. And by the time I needed to go wake up the boys, I was almost done.

Then I started gathering up laundry. It’s Monday after all. Still no inspiration, but I kept chugging. I sorted. I started a load.

After taking the boys to school, I did my Bible Study, and then worked on the kitchen. Yes, my foot stuck to the floor a bit here and there, but today is laundry day. I’ll mop on Thursday if the inspiration doesn’t strike before then. Because Thursday is Mopping Day.

And then I started with the picking up. Shoes have a spot, so I took them there. Mail and newspapers had piled up on the dining room table, so I sorted them. Easter baskets were emptied and put away. Easter grass (horrible stuff) was thrown away. Candy was consolidated and put in the candy spot.

Floors need to be vacuumed and bathrooms need to be cleaned. But I didn’t stress about it because their day will come later in the week. I just did what was on the plan for today.

So, even though I have very little energy today and am definitely not feeling inspired, my house looks pretty decent. At first glance, you probably wouldn’t know I’ve been neglecting it for a week.

It’s so nice to have a plan, so the house looks nicer and feels more comfortable.

And when it looks nicer and feels better . . . it’s inspiring.


  1. petiteblogger says:

    I just stumbled upon your blog a couple days ago and I'm so glad I did! I really think we must be related somewhere down the line… :) I'm looking forward to having some of your motivation rub off on me…

  2. Nony (A Slob Comes Clean) says:

    I'm glad you found me! I'm learning that there are quite a few of "us" out there.

  3. Anonymous says:

    I'm so proud of you! Yes! You are getting it! Soon, your house will feel like it organizes and cleans itself. Well, kinda. Lists and a plan are so necessary to housework. I have a master list for each day of the week. Each morning after my prayer time, I sit with my master list and make my daily chore list. It keeps me from getting overwhelmed. Keep up the good work! Others are learning from you.

  4. Petiteblogger, there are a LOT of us who think we are related to NONY and, by extension, each other!

    I've been on vacation since last Thursday and have to go back to work tomorrow. I didn't do nearly as much as I wanted to during this Easter break, but our main living level looks fantastic. It's nice to be able to open the blinds and the windows in the kitchen and living rooms and not be worried that people who come up on our back and front porches respectively won't be horrified if the look in the windows! They might even think the living room looks so pretty decorated for Easter! :)

  5. I have many times reminded myself that my sweet hubby goes to work every. single. day. whether he wants to or not. It helps me on those days when I don't "feel like" doing anything.

  6. Once again, I am stunned to find so many like minded people. I too never open my curtains or blinds for fear people will be horrified to know how we live. I woke up this morning and noticed how my kids room had a trail winding through it surrounded by mess. How did I not see this until now? Why don't I notice until it is a disaster. Now i'm not even sure where to start. Thank you Nony for your inspiration, now I don't feel so bad about my "sticky" floors :)

  7. I am reading your blog from the beginning…it is addicting! I found you via the Circle of Mom’s best home management mom voting page when I went there to vote for Iheart Organizing. Now I am voting for both of your blogs!

    I am only 22 and so I am not married and I don’t have children. I had always pictured myself when I “grew up” as being perfectly put together with a beautiful, organized home and very punctual. About 9 months ago, it finally occurred to me…oh no, I am essentially a grown up! And yet I can’t see my bedroom floor with all of the CLEAN, but not folded laundry, AND dirty laundry. Yikes. I was wool disorganized and could never find anything. Consequently, I was always running late and it was very stressful to have any friends see my room. I finally realized that I wasn’t going to magically morph into the perfect homekeeper just because I was now an adult…or magically someday when I got married or had children. It finally hit me that overcoming my disorganized, slobbish tendancies was something I would have to work VERY hard at. I am actually pretty good about keeping the kitchen presentable and my roommates and I were all very courteous about keeping the common living area clean. Therefore it was just my bedroom, closet and bathroom that needed to be dealt with. No big deal right? Wrong!!! It took me about a month. I purged huge trash bags of clothes to donate. I went through every single drawer and stack of paper to purge and organize. I found my birth certificate in a folder of freshman year English papers! I didn’t have a car at the time, so I would bike over a mile to the nearest Family Dollar for storage bins and took trip after trip looking absolutely ridiculous trying to balance storage bins and peddle at the same time. I am happy to say, I do now have a place for everything and can find my belongings easily. That’s huge for me, but I definitely haven’t figured it all out yet by any means. Just tonight I was reading hour blot all dozy in my bed while 2 loads of laundry sat on top of me on the bed hahaha. I finally got my booty up and put them away.

    Thank you for being such an inspiration! When I went through my big bedroom purge and reorganization, I kept telling my friends, “Thank goodness I realized how bad I am at keeping clean now – imagine how bad this would be to do with kids and a whole house of stuff!”. So I am extremely impressed that you persist day after day as a recovering slob and inspiration to others even as you balance motherhood! It gives me hope.

  8. Sorry for all of the spelling errors…I am writing on my kindle and it auto corrects in the strangest ways sometimes!

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