My creations for 2009
Memorable prose about remembering

New year's project

Strangely, despite the addition of a fourth child, last year I felt closer to achieving the elusive balance between work and life than I have since starting a family.  I intentionally pulled back on the pace of work so I could enjoy Adelaide's arrival in a more relaxed context.  It gave me a taste of what life could be like when I'm not always scrambling just to keep up.

I'm going to keep working on that this year.  My goal is to become a domestic goddess.


I've found myself adding blogs to my blog reader on the subject - blogs like Zen Habits and Unclutterer.  A couple of great pieces of advice that I've read of late are:

  • keep your horizontal surfaces clear of clutter to keep a space under control
  • never leave a room without taking something with you (in your own home, that is).

That first point certainly applies to my sewing studio.  I always feel so much better when I take the time to clear my patternmaking table and comptoir.

And the second point is probably pretty obvious to everyone, but when I consciously took that on board and made a point of always looking for things that need to be returned to their rightful place, the house looked a lot better for it.

Agnona cashmere slippers

Today I got the boys involved in that process.  We played a little game called "The Treasure Hunt".  I set the oven timer for 10 minutes.  Their challenge was to find items in the living room and kitchen that belonged to them and needed to be put in their proper place.  They had to present the item to me and tell me where it needed to go, and then put it there.  Each time they did this they scored a point. Ten minutes and 54 points later, the living room looked great and I was ecstatic.  It was so easy.  Got to love that.

Oh, and my favourite blog/site on the subject of organising is Flylady (recommended by Zen Habits.)  It's kooky and daggy but it offers some great systems.  Has anyone else discovered it?  I'm off to shine my sink.

Pretty pictures from here.


Jillian Manly

Have loved this site for many years now and yes, ultra daggy, but it makes sense.
I like the 21 (or whatever number it is) Fling Boogie, although I haven't seemed to have moved past Baby Steps.
Now that I've read your post, I'll have to go and shine my sink ... I was going to leave mine until the morning :-(


Great advice I will check them out. I already do the taking things with me thing. So many items to return to children's bedrooms I just thank my lucky stars we don't have a two storey house. I can actually already feel myself turning into my mother, with things in containers, and always obsessively put away. !! xoxo


thanks for the links! i know exactly what you are saying. i work part time with two small children and also made this year my year to "declutter". i forbid anything to be just left on top of the bookshelf, the bench or the piano - and it makes me heart glad to see these spaces without piles of papers, childs shoe, a haor clip... i feel a little more in countrol. :)


Hi - I only recently found your blog and am loving it so much! I too am using 2010 as the year to organise and de-clutter, especially with 5 of us in a tiny weatherboard cottage... Thank you for the links and tips I am off to clear all horizontal surfaces:) I just love your beautiful sewing! Embroidering French monograms is one of my favourite things to do:) Have a lovely day - Tina.


Those photos are gorgeous!
Yes, I love flylady (although I no longer subscribe to the emails I have my room task lists all set up and work through various zones each month) and keeping the coffee table, dining table, desk and kitchen counters clear makes me feel much more in control of things. Of course, sometimes it feels like an awful lot of work but it is definitely worth it.
Now, if I could just figure out a way to get our clothes storage issues under control I'd be one happy mama!!


now I've heard of flylady!!!! I've just spend 10 minutes picking up the clutter, putting things in homes so I can wash the floors tonight! I joke that if I was going to be stuffed like an animal when I die in a favourite pose it would probably be picking things up off the floor! And that includes my husband's stuff too!!!!!

lovely photos! must check out those links!


The reason shining your sink works is because you can't shine it when it is full of dishes so it really makes you clean up all the dishes and while your at it the kitchen. Seems to work for me.

I will have to check out the other sites.


Great links and I agree that decluttering is the best motivational therapy!!


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Popping over from Flickr. :) I've been a Flybaby since 2007 and I must say that though she seemed totally corny at first, I have really grown to love her. She has most definitely changed my life in good ways when it comes to maintaining order in my house. I even have a few friends now who joke to me that I should be their life coach so they can have a clean house too. LOL. :)

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