Lisa's Homemaking Corner

Lisa's Homemaking Corner

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Show and tell

What I've been reading this week.

Great Learning Games
Here There be Monsters  Demons just for Bible times?  No way.
Children and Chores  As someone who had to have her hubby show her how to iron, I'm big on teaching my children everything I do, too.
The Return of the Homemaker  A wonderful post about the homemaker in today's world versus yesterday.
The Frugal Home  A wonderful vision for the homemaker in our current economy.
Small Steps Toward a Simpler Life  A follow-up to the post above.
Idiots in the Midst  I found the bit about the toddlers particularly funny. 
Lunch Ideas for Busy Moms  A treasure trove of lunch ideas!
Easy Recipes  For those days when you have to throw something together fast.

Enjoy!

Tackling the living room...sort of

This week, I'm in the living room, de-cluttering and cleaning.  I'm pretty sure there's not a whole lot to de-clutter, but I've been surprised before.

I started out today NOT in the living room, though.  Remember my messy laundry room?  It was putting a hamper (pun intended ) on our evening routine.  Picking up the whole house doesn't really feel like it's getting done when you have a huge clutter "hot spot" (as flylady calls it) going on, that isn't as simple as just "picking up."  While Vincent worked on some independent school work this morning, I tackled the laundry room in between times when he needed my help.  Now, while it's not perfect yet, it is back to being functional again.  I've got laundry almost caught up, and now I've got a huge pile of ironing to do, so I will probably try and get that done before even thinking about the living room.  Ironing is a necessity around here, and especially today, as I'm pretty sure hubby has no more ironed work shirts.  So, I'm off to the ironing board for now!

Menu plan Monday

Monday:
Cereal, fruit
Leftovers
Beef pot roast with veggies, mashed potatoes and gravy, rolls

Tuesday:
Oatmeal, fruit
Leftovers
BBQ chicken pizza, salad

Wednesday:
Chilaquilles, fruit
Soup & sandwiches
Leftovers (Awana night)

Thursday:
Muffins, fruit
Ants on a log, crackers
Almond chicken casserole, veggies, rolls

Friday:
Cereal, fruit
Egg salad sandwiches, chips
Spaghetti, garlic cheese bread, salad

Thursday, March 26, 2009

In the mood for chocolate

For the past two days, I've been in the mood for...something sweet...possibly brownie-like?   Maybe not quite brownies.  Hmmm...

I was browsing through my blog list and came to Pioneer Woman's site.  I remembered seeing her post a chocolate sheet cake awhile back, saying it was the best chocolate cake ever.  Oh. My. Goodness!  You can say that again, PW!  I made it right away while the kiddos were napping.  I tried a piece right away, which led me to try another.  Then later we had company, and, well, I couldn't be rude by not eating dessert with them, could I?!  I'm pretty sure I gained about 20 pounds today.  But I'm telling you, all the extra work to lose the weight is soooooooooooooooo worth it with this cake!   You simply must try it.  Really.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Master Bathroom

I got my entire master bathroom organized AND clean!  Yay!  It feels so good to have this done...way more functional.  Plus, now I have more room to store stockpile items.    I play the Grocery Game, and my stockpile is ever growing.  Now, I will share pictures with you of my beautiful bathroom. 


I love the cute little window!  And it's textured, so you can't really see in or out, but it adds natural light, which I love.

And this is the most excellent shower.  It has it's own light, two heads and two seats.  Okay, moving on...

This is standing with my back to the toilet area.

I hope to get a towel bar for this area, so I don't have to put the hand towel on the counter.

Here you can see the linen closet across from the vanity.

And this is just to the right of the linen closet (I LOVE the cabinet space!!!!).

This is standing with my back to the floor-to-ceiling cabinets...going into the master bedroom, which, you can see far back there, goes into the living room.

And this is standing with my back to the master bedroom.  This goes to the laundry room.  Umm, ignore the mess...that's a whole 'nother project! 

So, there's the photo tour of my finally *organized* and clean bathroom.  Yes, I know it needs a little something on the wall.    I still have to find a few things, but, nothing's going up there until it gets painted, hopefully sometime this spring or summer (along with a few other rooms!).  Now, for the rest of the week, I move on to the master bedroom.  I'm actually quite excited to get through the house.  I guess this is a spring cleaning of sorts, but SHHHHHHHHHHHH, don't tell that to my inner child.  LOL!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Show and tell

Just thought I'd share some good blog posts I've read recently.

Slavery
Two Thousand Words
Peanut Butter Banana Cream Pie  I sooooooo can't wait to make this!  Mmmmmmmmm...
Dead Babies Who Don't Count  Very sad and scary...NOT FOR YOUNG READERS
Cleaning Off the Gunk  A helpful hint if your iron looks anything like mine right now...

That's all I've got for now.    I hope to share more of the reading I enjoy in future posts.  Enjoy!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Menus for the week of 3/23/09

Monday
Breakfast:
Cereal
Fruit
Lunch:
Leftovers
Dinner:
Creamed chicken on toast

Tuesday
Breakfast:
Oatmeal
Fruit
Lunch:
PB&J's
Baby carrots
Crackers
Dinner
Chicken pot pie
Rolls

Wednesday
Breakfast:
Muffins
Fruit
Lunch:
Soup
Crackers
Fruit
Dinner:
Leftovers

Thursday
Breakfast:
French toast
Fruit
Lunch:
Leftovers
Dinner:
Bubble pizza
Salad

Friday
Breakfast:
Cereal
Breakfast leftovers
Lunch:
Grilled cheese
Chips
Dinner:
Leftovers

A brand new week: The master bedroom and bathroom

Last week, I got our main bathroom completely clean and de-cluttered.  I also got a good start on the boys' room, although I didn't get as much done as I would have liked to.  We did make good progress, though, and it will be easier for next time.

This week, it's on to the master bedroom and bathroom.  I am going to be starting with the bathroom first.  It needs a good deep cleaning, and I really need to go through the linen closet.  I could be storing things much more efficiently than I am now in there.  I know a couple of bins are just leftover unpacking from the move...one is shoes and stuff that needs to be unpacked either to the front closet or bedrooms.  The other is a bunch of curtains from the old house that I think I will just bag off and drop off at the Goodwill or something.  Those 2 things alone will free up quite a bit of space in there, and I know there's probably some other stuff that can be re-located or gotten rid of altogether.

We are trying hard to stick with our evening routine.  There were a couple of nights last week I didn't get to it for one reason or another, and I definitely regretted it the next morning, and all the next day, really.  So, before I add any other routines, I want to really get the evening one down.  In my opinion, it's really the most important...as I have found out, it really sets the tone for the next day!

Anyway, I am off to finish up a thing or two, then I will send my oldest off to bed.  Have a good night everyone!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Menu for the week of 3/16/09

Today Isaac is 8 months old!  Yay!  And this mama is excited that he slept straight through the night for 2 nights in a row.    Big boy!

Anyway, here's the menus for this week.

Monday
Breakfast:
Cereal
Fruit
Lunch:
Leftovers
Dinner:
Pelou (from the freezer, from when we were studying Central America...it's from Trinidad)
Bread and butter

Tuesday
Breakfast:
Muffins
Fruit
Lunch:
Soup
Sandwiches
Dinner:
Dr. Pepper spaghetti (from the freezer)
Garlic bread

Wednesday
Breakfast:
Oatmeal
Fruit
Lunch:
Salad nicoise (since we just studied France)
Dinner:
Leftovers (AWANA night)

Thursday
Breakfast:
Fried egg sandwiches
Hash browns
Lunch:
PB&J's
Crackers
Baby carrots
Dinner:
Leftovers

Friday
Breakfast:
Pancakes
Lunch:
Leftovers
Dinner:
Monte Cristos
Chips or crackers

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Evening routine

This starts after dinner and a time of relaxing a bit.  Baths don't happen every day, but I've put them into their normal spot on the days they do happen.

Load dishwasher and start-Mom (will train Vincent on this soon)
Wash dishes that don't go in the dishwasher-Mom & Vincent
Pick up kitchen-Mom
Pick up dining room-Vincent
Sweep kitchen & dining room-Vincent
Keep laundry going if necessary-Mom or Vincent
Make sure Isaac's room is cleaned up and everything is put back-Mom, Vincent, Andrew
Isaac's bath-Mom, but Vincent and Andrew help sometimes
Feed Isaac-Mom usually does his bedtime bottle
Put Isaac to bed
Andrew's bath-Mom helps, although he can mostly do this on his own
Make sure Vincent's and Andrew's room is cleaned up and everything is put back-Vincent while Mom is helping with Andrew's bath
Vincent also gets his bath stuff ready so he doesn't have to go in his room while Andrew's trying to fall asleep
Bedtime prayers
Andrew goes to bed-Mom tucks him in
Vincent takes his bath
Go through the rest of house and make sure everything is picked up and put away, and for the most part clean-Mom and Vincent (he joins in after his bath on bath nights)
Mom and Vincent relax for awhile while we wait for Andrew to drift off.  If Vincent tries going to bed before Andrew is asleep, Andrew will start talking away.  So for now, we just wait until he's asleep, then Vincent goes in to bed.
This is when I usually check email and do online stuff, if I didn't do it after Andrew went to bed.  I also pull out my bible and read along while I listen out loud on BibleGateway.  For some reason with me, I have found that I retain what I read more than when I just read or just listen.  So, I do both.    A lot of times I'll read until Nick comes home, either the bible, or another book I'm reading...but I always try and get some bible reading in first.  I also have a flashlight in my nightstand that I use to read before I go to sleep if I have energy to stay up a little longer.  Usually I'll read until I fall asleep, hence the flashlight.  That way, I don't have to get up to turn the light off (we don't have lamps in our room...yet).  I'll usually wake up, turn off the flashlight, put it and my bible down, and go back to sleep. 

Sound like a lot?  Well, it does get a lot done.  I definitely like having the house all ready when I get up in the morning.  But in reality, once you get used to doing it, and especially if you get the kids involved (I think this is key!), it doesn't take long at all!  On non-bath night, I would say 45 minutes, from the time I start the routine, until the time I put Andrew to bed.  And that includes putting 2 kids to bed at separate times and a feeding for the baby.

So, that's our evening routine.

Back to the basics

A long time ago, I went by the FlyLady system and it worked really well for me.  Since then, I've tried a good mix of different techniques for keeping my home.  Now, with the home I'm in now, it seems like doing things the FlyLady way makes a lot of sense, so that's what I'm going with, for the most part.  Mostly, I'm following the "zone" schedule, and maybe a few other things, but I have kind of developed my own way of doing things, now that I've been at this homemaking thing for awhile.   For instance, our weeks around here start on Sunday, not Monday.  Most of the time, Nick's work schedule is Sunday -Thursday, so that's what our whole family's "work week" is, including homeschool.  Although, we still tend to keep Sundays light.

Anyway, this week in my home, I will be working on the main bathroom, plus one other room.  I have decided that "one other room" is going to be the older boys bedroom.  The place is a disaster.  On the surface it doesn't look to bad.  On the surface.  You go anywhere beyond the surface, and it's scary.  I would say that is the one room in this whole house right now that needs a serious de-cluttering.  They have such a nice, huge closet that has so much organizing potential, but right now, no one wants to touch it.  So, as soon as I'm done with the bathroom, I'm rolling up my sleeves and going in!  I hope to be done with the bathroom tomorrow, so that I have almost a whole week to work on the boys' room.

So, in upcoming blogs, I hope to share routines being set up, more studies on joy, homeschool happenings, and fun things with the kids.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Menu for the week of 3/9/09

I meant to post this on Monday, but did not have it complete yet.    I'm sorry I haven't been on a lot lately.  I am trying to come up with a regularly posting "routine," so to speak, so I can better manage my time on here. 

Monday
Breakfast:
Breakfast sandwiches
Lunch:
Leftovers
Dinner:
Ground beef Romanoff
Peas (after I steam these, I add butter, Spike seasoning, dillweed, zest and juice from half of a lemon)
Bread and butter

Tuesday
Breakfast:
Bagels with cream cheese
Lunch:
Pizza
Dinner:
(Hubby made dinner tonight! *swoon*)
Fish
Corn
Dinner rolls
Cheese-stuffed oven pretzels

Wednesday
Breakfast:
Bagels with cream cheese
Lunch:
Leftovers
Dinner:
Leftovers

Thursday
Breakfast:
Cereal
Lunch:
Lime chicken soft tacos
Corn
Rice (we will use some from our Uncle Ben's flavored rice stash)
Dinner:
Chicken Divan
5-cup salad (a fruit salad)

Friday
Breakfast:
Egg sandwiches (my dad's famous fried-egg sandwiches...I will have to post a recipe sometime!)
Hash browns
Lunch:
Leftovers
Dinner:
Egg drop soup
Fried rice

I know it seems like we have lots of leftovers, and we do!  I tend to cook on the, um, heavy side, and my family doesn't seem to mind eating the leftovers until they're gone, so that's what we do.  Unless I purposely make extra to stick in the freezer.