The Prairie Girl’s Home Goals

I like thinking about goals. I like making lists and I like the planning.  The implementation?? Hmmm. That’s a whole other ball game!

I decided to link up with all these fabulous bloggers on goals for our homes for 2012.  Mostly because I just want to have a goal and fulfill it.  I want to be intentional this year and clearly, intentionality means accountability.

Last year my home suffered dearly for so many reasons.  Walls and cabinets that I intended to paint are still as they were, furniture that I wanted to repurpose is still sitting in the garage, crafts and curtains that were to be made have been left in the “to do” pile once again.  I have procrastinated and lost my motivation.  Mostly due to the fact that we were supposed to be moving last summer and we still haven’t sold and partly due to the fact that when I feel overwhelmed I freeze up and nothing gets done.

So, goals for this year?

1.  BUY a house, move in and get dirty right away.   I can’t do much about this house although I am going to paint a couple of walls that no new owner will like and it will help my mood to perk up.  But moving is top priority and getting a house that we can all live in again is always number 1 in my thoughts.

2.  I want my new house to be the landing pad for my kids and all their friends.  We have been many years without having the social revolving door happening and we’re so ready for it.  I need to make sure there’s a comfy room with comfy furniture, foosball and ping pong!~ these have long been family goals and now’s the time to make it happen!

This is our current basement with a pool table not being used. Gotta change that!

3. I want to make my master bedroom that room where my husband and I love to go rather than just a place to sleep. I’d love a fireplace if we could make that work somehow(it would have to be a fairly big room).  I want a big headboard and I’m also working on my very first handmade patchwork quilt for our bed.  Gotta get that done before our anniversary in April!

The beginnings of my master bedroom quilt. I think I'm going to love it when it's done!

4. And one of my must-do goals has got to be to make my kitchen functional and working for me every day.  I have slacked off on home cooking and baking  and I really want to take back those crafts and bless my family daily with homemade goodness.

5. Every bedroom is in need of a new dresser so my mission is going to be to find older dressers to refinish, paint and re-purpose into what will work for each member of the family. I’m actually really excited about this! And night tables too!  I’ve already started to pick up some pieces that will need attention sooner than later.

Picked up this little beauty at a sale in the fall.Hoping to give it some life with a new colour for one of the girls' rooms!

I made a list yesterday of things I need to do to start getting my house in order and stop being consumed by stuff! You can read it here: Clean up and Clean Out!

Okay, I think that’s enough.  I have a LOT of work to do!! Gotta get on it ! What’s your home goals for this year?

Clean up~ Clean out.{Everything from Sheets to Spices}

Why do we purge in January?  I don’t know why the urge doesn’t hit in March or July or October.  But here we are, second week of January and blogs are practically exploding all over the web with de-cluttering  resolutions, organizational insight and the urge to purge.  People are even purging their bodies of toxins and an over-indulged holiday of gluttony.   Ah yes, January is de-tox month.

So, what are you cleaning up?

Are you attacking a closet or a storage room? Are you on a mission to figure out how you got to this  point of having more stuff than you know what to do with? That’s where I’m at.  So, in lieu of making resolutions I’m making  a list of things to purge and clean out.   I am planning on moving soon.  Like, sooner than later would be GREAT!  But in the mean time, I have decided that there’s no point in moving all of the things we have.  Because, well, we have TOO.  MANY. THINGS!!

Here’s where I’m starting:

  1. Clean out pantry and get rid of stuff we never eat. Actually, I’m trying to bake and cook my way through most of the pantry this month to cut down on my grocery bill as well as use up what we have.  I’m also going to move a lot of my dry goods into jars~ something I’ve wanted to do for years.   Here’s a great blog that has some good tips on what to store in your pantry:
  2.  I’m going to clean out my dishes. I have so many that I never use and then I have too many that we use which clogs up the dishwasher way too often. I’m pretty sure we don’t need 40 cups in rotation on any given day.  And I’m also very fine with not using 3 complete place settings of dishes.  At least one has to go.(There’s 6 of us in our family plus we have to be prepared for company but I’m done with these 6 piece place settings that I’ve had for 10+ years)
  3. Time to clean out linens.  I try to do this regularly anyways but somehow the closet has become the dumping ground for any piece of cloth that people don’t know what to do with. Tablecloths of varying sizes, colors and fabrics are overtaking needed space for sheets.  Which reminds me~ we need sheets!! I’ve been using the same ones for 20 years and they are thread-bare!
  4. Books!  Oh dear. It’s such a love of mine but we just can’t keep accumulating books.  I’m actually going to be doing a book giveaway starting this next week.  Watch for details because I have some really GOOD ones!
  5. Digital photos~ now, while these may not take up physical space , they’re clogging up the memory on my hard drive.  I have folders that are mis-labeled, photos from the past 6 years all on CD or some sort of memory drive and I’m losing track of where they all are.  I fear this will be a several-month long project.  But, I am committed to deleting. Yes.  DELETING. I have multiple shots  of the same thing, some good, others not. It’s time to pare down the folders to a more manageable state. That, plus I’d like to see them for a change and so I need to get them on my digital picture frame.    Once this is done, time to make some photo books. This is one of my major goals for 2012~ actually have published, tangible photos to hold and look at.

Okay, well, that’s enough.  There will be more added to this list but I have to start here.  My pantry is calling and the spices need some TLC!

Day 27~ Life Interrupted

What do you do when you had a plan but your family has other plans?  What do you do when what you want to do is at the bottom of the list of what everyone else wants you to do?

Well, if you’re a mom and wife like me~ you change your plans; modify, redirect.  Seems that that has been my life for the better part of last week.  Don’t worry, I’m not complaining.  I’m just letting you know that Days 22-26 are lost out there between my intentions to get them posted and the reality of my life.

I often said that if I ever write a book it will be called: “I Got Distracted on My Way to Heaven” because, well, that’s sort of how I roll.  The best laid out intentions to BE intentional, have goals, fulfill them and progress towards the ultimate goal of “Well done, my good and faithful servant”…you know, it just doesn’t always happen that way.

Last night, I got caught up in a NEW hobby.  Like I really need another one. But that’s how I am. I love to do things. I’m a do-er.  The problem is, there’s so much other stuff to do outside of MY to-do list that I never seem to get my stuff done.  And I always tell myself that I can’t do the fun stuff till the needed stuff gets done.  *big huge sigh*  The needed stuff is NEVER done.  And so….fun stuff awaits.

Do you ever feel like your to-do list is so long that it will never be done?  Do you ever wonder if you’re just spinning your wheels and not going anywhere?   Let’s make a pact today; you and me, to DO something for our families and then DO something we really want to do.  Maybe it’s as simple as a bubble bath or maybe it’s as elaborate as starting to make your Christmas cards or sew a quilt!  Whatever it is, you’ll probably feel better about all of the to-do stuff when you’ve given yourself a little incentive of want-to stuff. 🙂

Day 11~ Follow Through

I’ve been struggling with my daily topics for this series on loving your family. Struggling because my family is not all together, life has thrown us some curve balls and I’m feeling lost in my own home.  But today I’m shaking it off. “Woe is me” doesn’t cut it around here and only perpetuates making excuses. Which is what I’ve decided to focus on today: Following through on what you’ve promised.

First of all, let’s just get something straight here.  Saying “I promise” is a hard core commitment and you better do what you said you would. If you don’t, well, your kids and your husband will come to believe they can’t rely on you.  But equally as important is the times you don’t say “I promise” but substitute it with “I will” , “you can count on me” , “I’ll have it done by tomorrow” or anything else resembling those phrases.

As a mom, I’m sure you can attest to the times when one of your kids has asked you to wash their favourite jacket, sew a button on their jeans,  fix a tear in their dress or shirt…….well, you know what I mean.  Did you do it?? Did you? I admit, that I have failed miserably in this area.  I get distracted or worse, I commit and I haven’t given myself enough time. I very often mistakenly THINK I can get something done when I really can’t~ I guess that’s some serious over-confidence on my part. The important thing here is to do what you said you’d do.  If you have promised to take your youngest shopping for shoes, then do it.  Don’t wait until she can’t even find a pair to pull on her growing feet! (my house..this morning….*sigh*)

And then there’s the follow through with the husband. ooo….boy…..

I’m sure my husband rolls his eyes, and likely some other choice words come out of his mouth.  I really do plan on doing all the things that need to be done….but, I haven’t done them yet.  This is not good.  It is priority #1 in your house to take care of those things that your husband has asked and is fully expecting you to do.  This week, for me, I must attack a rather disorganized garage and begin to pack and stack boxes. I have promised that by Friday it will be done.  So, this is my accountability group right here~ you all are my witnesses.  I will post a photo on Friday evening of my newly reorganized garage complete with boxes that actually look like they’re packed and labeled! See, now I’ve done it. I’ve put myself out there, there’s no looking back.

Sometimes, this is what it comes to: being honest about your limitations but also coming clean about your shortcomings.  It’s okay to mess up…as long as you make it up.  It’s okay to forget…as long as you remember.  It’s okay to be late, as long as you start earlier the  next time.  Perfection isn’t required, but being focused on the task at hand is.

My son has been asking for homemade lemon meringue pie. This weekend I finally made one~ he ate most of it. 🙂

So, what is it that you have promised to your spouse or kids that you haven’t done yet? Did you promise a plate of fresh cookies for after school? What about a game of Wii Sports that one of your kids is dying to play with you?  Have you put stuff off in favour of less important things?  Remember, following through is one of the best ways to show your family that you are 100% committed to them.  This is love in action.


UPDATE:  I completed my task….it’s a work in progress but it’s a great big job that is finally dealt with and it feels great!  Check out my update post and pics here.

Days 9~10 Quality Time

We’ve been celebrating Canadian Thanksgiving over here. That’s why I’m merging two days’ posts into one.   Pumpkin pie, lemon meringue pie(whoever invented meringue was a genius!!), turkey, stuffing….CFL(football), NHL(go Flames!)… a few movies, some silly muppet videos on YouTube. A lot of laughter, sharing, caring, talking….it’s been good to just hang out together.

Saturday, my daughters asked me to take them to the local arena for public skate. It’s not my favourite thing to do, I’ll admit that.  But they get a look of sheer delight when I pull out the camera and snap all their moves and tricks.  I love to watch them skate~ it’s something I never was very good at. They love it!  And the great thing is: no TVs, no iPods, cellphones or any other distractions…just skating.

What do you do to spend quality time with your kids? Do you regularly drop everything to do something they love? It’s one of the best gifts to give them: undivided attention.

Day 8~Family Priorities

Here it is in the wee hours of the morning. My family is home. Tucked in their beds, sleeping~ resting after a 5 hour drive. So thankful are we that we get an extra day together this weekend: Thanksgiving.  The coming together and giving thanks…for blessings, family and unconditional love.  I’m having to adjust my priorities these days. Things I once thought were so important, well, they’re not.     Love God, Love Family, Love others. In that order.  So, that means that this little blog will have to wait.  For now, I will share sage words of wisdom from a fellow blogger, Juana Mikels.  (I wonder if she gets the same grief with her name as I do with mine??)

Here is an excerpt from her blog yesterday:

Here are my priorities:

My relationship with God (Seek first His kingdom … )

My relationship with my husband 

My relationship with my children (Each one individually, not a group.)

My home (because people live in that home.)

My relationship with other family members.

Building up other Christians (what I am doing now—a small part, but a consistent part of my week.  Because I do not have small children, I have some extra time for this.)

Neighbors, friends, children’s friends

Loving others who do not know Christ.

You can read the rest of her post here.               I realized upon reading this that I have switched some things around. It’s very easy to do for others, pray for others, give to others…….but if those “others” are not your family first(after God of course) then you(I) have missed the mark entirely.  So, this weekend. I am purposefully focusing on my relationship with God~ His Word and very closely behind….my family. They need me and I need them. So we’re going to hang out, eat some food, laugh, work through some stuff and let the rest of the list wait until Tuesday. It’s the best way I know to love my family.  

What about you? Do you have your priorities a little messed up? Do you need to re-adjust some things and get back to what’s most important?  Here’s one more blog worth reading…from one of my favourite author/speakers, Angie Smith:  With Him

Day 3- Love your Family: Make Their Beds!


Okay, here’s a fun one. We’re busy people. We run out the door in the morning to school , work and all of our commitments. Rarely do beds get made in our house.  I KNOW, I KNOW!! It’s horrible! Listen people, we’re not all Martha Stewart and housekeeping has never been my strong suit.  But this I know….there’s something absolutely refreshing, wonderful and peaceful about a clean, tidy, fresh-smelling bedroom especially at the end of a hard day.  So, how about if today, YOU….yes YOU , Mom(or Dad) make ALL of the beds in your house! Yes! That’s right. Extend some grace to your family, take some time out of your schedule and SHOW LOVE by doing this one very simple task.  Do you have any idea how much this will speak LOVE to your kids…AND your husband?  It really will(especially to those whose Love Language is “Acts of Service”).  Don’t do it to get a “thanks Mom”, a kiss, hug or anything else. In fact, I challenge you to go into it expecting NOTHING in return. Just do it because you love them.

Here’s what you should shoot for:

1. Clean sheets(dry them with a scented fabric softener if possible)

2.Decide on whether to pull back the blankets in an inviting fashion or if you should leave it neatly made up.

3. Is this your teenage son’s room? Or perhaps your athletic teen daughter?(I have both). Here’s a little trick: Take a new dryer sheet(mountain fresh scent is lovely) and place it under the floor register so that when the furnace kicks in(it is fall here, yes we have already fired up the heat a couple of times) or when you have your A/C or fan on it will gently scent the room. It works GREAT!!

4.Have the pillows in your house seen better days? Is the fluffiness gone? You don’t have to spend a lot on new pillows. Let’s face it, they don’t last forever. Go to your local Walmart, Target, Superstore and get a 2 pack for $10 or less. Put a new pillowcase on and then top it off with a little treat.  They do it in hotels~ doesn’t our family deserve the royal treatment once in a while?   A little snack sized chocolate bar, tied with a ribbon will do. But if you want to get more elaborate you could leave your son’s favorite comic book(I love Archie myself), your daughter’s favorite magazine or a new toothbrush. Anything will do but leave something.

This is love in action~ sacrifice a little bit of time and effort to show your family that you think of them and their needs are important to you.

Sow in Love~ Reap in Joy

You might also like this post on WHY to make your bed every day~ by another blogger doing the

31days Challenge.

Did you miss my Welcome Post to this 31 day series on Loving Your Family? You can find it here. I’ll also be leaving the links to each days’ posts at the bottom of that introductory post so that you can find them all easily.

Also, please check in here to find all of the other (600+) bloggers participating in this fabulous month of blogging on so many wonderful topics! Bookmark your favourites as you’ll be referring back to them often.