Recovery Cleaning

Finn thought we should spend the day curled up with a blanket and a book.. 

Some weeks are just insane.  This has been one of them.  Extra drama practices for next weeks play, services at church each evening with the Encounter team, late nights and early mornings with lots of snacks and big breakfasts with the three extra teens staying in our home.  The first week of good weather - so LOTS of time outside in the gardens, and getting the outside ready for the skeet shoot in two weeks.  

I'm exhausted, and behind absolutely everywhere.  It's way too much to even make a to do list.  Where to start?  I could just concentrate on cleaning, and get the house completely in good order.  Or I could concentrate on catching up my email, and scheduling, and dealing with the 40 things people are waiting for me to respond on.  I could clear all the photos and videos off the camera, bake snacks for this evening, revise the menu plan & prep extra food for the week-end, spend the day outside with the animals/gardens/landscaping, help the kids get caught up on their school work/paperwork (It's been a busy week for them too!), tailor the costumes for the play, finally do my nails/dye my hair/pedicure etc...

But I want to do it ALL.  :-)  So for my "Recovery Cleaning", which I end up doing pretty regularly around here this time of year, I devised a plan that works pretty well for me.

Every hour on the hour:

1. 1 Laundry.  Fold, start another load.  
2. 1 outside chore
3. 1 thing in the kitchen
4. 1 room straightened and in order

And then I sit down at my computer to work on the myriad of paperwork/photos/scheduling/lists/email/evernote notes etc that I I want to work through today.

The actual list varies.  Some times when I do this I include exercise as one of the 4 things, sometimes it's mending, or one specific project...  

9am looked something like this:

1. Bring laundry down from upstairs bathroom, get it started
2. Milk to the calf, and on my way take scraps to the chickens, feed them and check for eggs
3. Clear the kitchen table.  (I know - but it was BAD!  I made breakfast for 8 people, and hadn't cleaned it up yet.  At 9am.  )
4. The living room straightened, vacuumed, and a few key surfaces dusted.  Although the living room looked really messy, it's one of the simplest rooms to straighten..  it's usually just a few cups that need carried to the kitchen, and a lot of blankets and pillows strewn all over from the boys late night video gaming binge.  The dusting was just because a few shiny surfaces and the smell of the dusting spray makes a room feel cleaner

Then on my computer I downloaded some things Dan needed converted and got them ready to be put on his phone, opened evernote and started through my default folder (this is where I "share" everything I wanted to look into more later when I have more time, it sits in this folder, which I try to empty out a few times a week.  Everything from scriptures, books to check out, recipes to try, thoughts and ideas for landscaping..  ) and I answered all of the messages in facebook messenger that required a response.  It surprises me how much I use facebook messenger these days..  it's been convenient for planning outings and carpooling arrangements, etc.

Then I started this blog post.

10am looked something like this:

1. switched the laundry from the washer to the dryer (it's raining, so the dryer today)
2. Dug out some wire shelving from last years greenhouse and stuck it in the back of one of my raised garden beds, then planted cucumbers in front of it, to climb up it.  (Since I was headed right past, I carried some stuff out to the car on my way, and while in there, filled a bag with stuff from the car that needed carried into the house)  And I straightened the deck a bit on my way through...
3. Emptied the dishwasher and reloaded it, and since that cleared one section of counter, I wiped that down and put some pinesol in the bottom of the convection oven to soak it for cleaning later.
4. The dining room.  Cleared the table, dusted it of with a dusting spray so it shines and smells pretty, put the centerpieces back, and vacuumed.  Only took about 5 minutes, but the room looks so much better!

On my computer I installed S Note (I LOVED this app for the encounter services this week!  Each night there is an outline, I snapped a photo of the outline with my phone, opened it in SNote, then took notes right on my phones screen.  I love paperlesss!  It's the first I've used this app, and in using it I realized it has a desktop version for my laptop, similar to evernote, so I'm getting that set up now) Started clearing photos off my phone, and uploading some of them to dropbox to transfer to my computer, and sorted (deleted) my emails down to 23 that actually need my attention/response.


1. The weather has changed - it's very warm today, in the 70's and the rain has stopped - so this load of laundry went on the line.  This is time consuming.
2. I counted hanging the laundry as my outside time for this hour.  :-(
3. More dishes.  I got everything in the sink and drainer put away, and washed the pans that sat on the stove..  the kitchen is almost usable once again.  Which is good - since it's almost time to make lunch.  I started lunch, and tea, and wiped the counters down...
4. I've been working my way around the house in order - living room, dining room, next "room" over was the hallway, so I did both the hall and our tiny downstairs bathroom.

Somehow this hour went by much faster than the last two.  It's depressing to realize 2/3 of my day is over already.  The first part of the day was just me getting up, making breakfast for everyone, and seeing everyone off.  Looking around, the house already looks so much  better though..  and  my fitbit has over 4,000 steps.  Not great, but not bad either.

Noon - 

Here the real deviations begin.  Text from daughter, she is staying later than she expected (job shadowing today) and needs her track clothes/shoes brought to the school.  Text from sons friend, he needs to be at the school at 1pm for an extra drama practice (My kids are homeschooled, but are taking part in a spring play, and in track, at the local christian school).  Text from another mom, about carpooling. Son is begging to skip the later afternoon drama practice (he's not in the act they are practicing) and go to an event with his girlfriends family instead. Same son also realizes none of the clothes he needs for this evening are clean - brings me another load of laundry.

 At this point I'm not sure if it's just my husband and I for dinner here tonight. Is our oldest taking his girlfriend out to eat tonight, or are they eating here?  Are the two youngest eating the meal provided between track and drama, or are they, and one of their friends, coming here to eat between track and drama?  Am I feeding 7 or us, or 2 of us?  At 1pm, I still don't know.  But at least my kitchen is almost clean, and can be used again...

S Note is not syncing.  The new app shows no notes - although I have notes on my phone.  Ten more emails have arrived, and I haven't dealt with the first 23.  There's a pile of laundry needing folding, and my head hurts.  

Lunch, then regroup.


Gathered up all the items daughter needed.  Drove items and son to the school.  There went 20 minutes of my day..  but I'm thankful we live close at least.

Spent some time typing this blog post, while fussing with S Note Some more, to see why it won't sync.

2pm - 9pm

My routine is out the window.  It's gorgeous outside!  Push mowed the back yard, weed whacked, spray painted chairs, did lots more laundry, did a temporary repair on the hot tub cover (gorilla tape and spray paint....), grilled BBQ chicken & pineapple and made onion rings for supper (for 6 of us) ran to the hardware store and various other child related errands...
some of the flowers blooming in the back yard

At 8pm the plan was to clean up and go in and watch some tv..  but it was just too beautiful outside.  We sat down about 8:30, at the table in the backyard, watched the peacocks and admired the progress in the yard.  

I barely made a dent in all that needed done - but it's enough.