It has been about three weeks since I started with FlyLady. Today was Day 22 of the BabySteps for me. I confess haven’t been following them very closely lately, but that is because I jumped ahead a bit in the program a while back. For example, I completed my morning routine after the first few days of BabySteps because I was enjoying it so much and I recognized that this is when I have the most energy to get things done. It has become my favourite part of the day and gets my day off to a great start where I feel organized and that I’ve accomplished something. Here is my morning routine:
Get up between 7 and 7:30 and go out to do farm chores. This is when I am grateful for FlyLady’s rule of laying out the clothes you are going to wear the night before. I’m still pretty sleepy-headed at this point and it’s nice to not have to dig around in a dark bedroom for sweats and t-shirts.
Walk the dog and feed/water the chickens, add straw bedding to the coop if needed.
Back in the house I head to my bathroom and strip down and start the morning’s dirty laundry pile. I weigh myself then wash my face and do a quick body swipe (if it’s a shower day I use the other bathroom to shower and return to my bathroom for the rest).
I fix my hair then use the facecloth I just washed my face with to wipe down the sink, followed by the toilet. If I showered I just use a dry cleaning cloth; I have a stack of old diaper wipes in a basket in each bathroom for this purpose. It literally takes about 10 seconds. It is amazing how little time it takes when the thing is done every day! Then I give the toilet bowl a swish with the toilet brush (if I showered, I also wipe and swish the toilet in that bathroom while the hot water is getting hot). The facecloth and/or wipe go in the dirty laundry pile.
I get dressed to my Lace Up Shoes (I love how they give me a spring in my step as I go about my day) then I make the bed. If it’s a day to change sheets or for fresh pajamas I put the dirty laundry in the growing pile (fresh sheets are put on during my afternoon routine).
I’m now done in the bedroom and ensuite bathroom, and when I leave there with my handful of dirty laundry, I leave behind a bathroom that gives me a lift every time I walk into it throughout the day. This was definitely one of the worst places before I started Flying – our water has a lot of sulphur in it and it stained yellow rings in the toilet bowl and sink that took time and elbow grease to get rid of, so I always put it off. And it took lots of cleaning cloths. By doing the Swish and Swipe each morning it takes only seconds, one cloth to wipe, and it always looks great. I also leave a bedroom that brings me a feeling of peace whenever I walk in. I know that part of the house is Done for the day, and it feels good!
Next, I go to the kitchen and put the kettle on, then put the dirty laundry in the washer and run a load (other family members have filled it up during the previous day: it’s another benefit of having an empty washer during the day – dirty clothes and linens can be tossed right into the washer, no piles of dirty laundry building up!). It is great to always have clean clothes and linens – before laundry would pile up until I needed it and then I would spend all day doing several loads in a row.
Back to the kitchen where I unload the dishwasher while the tea is steeping. I’ve gotten really good (not perfect, but much improved) at cleaning the kitchen in the evening. I confess I don’t always shine my sink, but I leave it clean and the counters clean, too. It’s very nice to wake up to a clean kitchen!
I take my tea and then check my email and the schedule for the day. This is a nice time to take a rest. I also eat my breakfast during this time. With an empty dishwasher, it’s easy to put the breakfast dishes directly into the washer rather than having them pile up on the counter. It also encourages the kids put theirs away after breakfast too (they don’t like to eat right away in the morning so I make their breakfast after I’m done mine), rather than dumping them in the sink. I also wipe my sink when I’m done with a dry cloth I keep there for that purpose. This is another Flylady tip and it really keeps the sink looking great and easy to clean with just a swipe!
So that is my morning routine so far. Where I’ve slipped up is that I haven’t been doing my 2-minute Hot Spot cleanup, the 5-minute Room Rescue, and the 15-minute Decluttering for the current Zone on a regular basis. It has been pretty sporadic, actually. I’m having a hard time with these and I think it’s because some of our days require us to be out of the house relatively early and there isn’t time (getting up earlier is just not an option – it’s a freakin’ miracle that I naturally get up at 7 these days because for years I used to sleep in until around 9 or 10). It may also be because I already have a long routine and by the time I am done with breakfast and cleanup I’ve been up and doing my thing for almost 2 hours I’m ready to move on. Whatever the problem is I’m going to try to identify it this week and address it.
One thing that might help is our chickens are meat birds and are due to be processed this month, so I only have a couple of weeks left of caring for them in the morning and that will shave off about 30 minutes from my morning routine. It is also getting dark earlier, and at some point I will have to switch things around a bit so that I do inside stuff (like unload the dishwasher) before going out with the dog (we walk through the forest and I’m a bit chicken to do that in the dark, even with a flashlight).
Next time I will talk about my afternoon and evening routines, as well as the challenges I am facing with my Weekly Schedules. I’m also really prone to distraction and these days we are fervently working on house plans (we are building a new home on our property) and it is all too tempting to sit down and start sketching – next thing I know an hour has passed! Overall, however, I’m pleased with the changes I have made and appear (so far) to be sticking with. Onward and upward!