Monday, March 14, 2011

Home Management -- an inside job

Thought for the Day: Being organized will give you more free time, contribute to a cheerful nature, and add to the peace and security of your home. If you want these conditions badly enough, it is worth all the strength you can muster to work at it. Remember that the extreme of being organized -- being over-organized -- will make yo and your family a miserable conglomeration of nervous wrecks. Efficiency is good only when it works for you, not against you. So, find a level of efficiency that works well for you and use it. Denise Schofield.

What does the bathroom that you personally use look like at the moment?
Is it clean?
Are there clean towels ready, as well as all the toiletries needed?
Is it organized?
Are you holding on to any bottles of half-used beauty products that you don't really care for and don't intend to use?
Can you find what you need in order to get ready in a timely fashion?
Do you share the bathroom with someone else? Are you considerate of another's need for bathroom space?
If you are married, is your bathroom so frilly that it's intimidating to your husband?
On the other hand, do you need to add a few soft touches to a bathroom that is too stark or bare?
Do you have a dressing table set up, either in your bathroom or somewhere else? Is it neat? Pretty? Functional?

What about your dresser?
Do you have three good fitting bras (one to wash, one to let rest, and one to wear), as well as a sports bra or two?
Do you have an adequate supply of underwear? Hose? Socks?
Do you have body shapers that are appropriate for your needs?
Do you have slips on hand? Yes, these are old-fashioned, but they really do improve the look of skirts and dresses.
What is the shape of your night wear? Do you need to repair or freshen any night clothing? Do you sew? Can you sew yourself a new, pretty gown?
Do you have a pretty robe and slippers for those times when you need to be modest in a flash or for that part of the evening after you've gotten ready for bed but may not be quite ready to turn in?

What about your grooming routine?
Do you have skin products that you bought with good intentions, but haven't used? Can you start using them in order to take care of your skin?
In the morning, at a bare minimum, do you brush hair and teeth, wash your face, put on moisturizer (preferably with sunscreen in it for the day or else just use a moisturizing sunscreen for daytime).
Do you put on some neat clothing quickly, even if it's only attractive exercise gear for working out?
Do you take off any makeup that you wear every evening, no matter how tired you are?
Do you spend at least an hour a week on those little extras that we all need to do, such as taking care of our nails and eyebrows?
Have you found a hairstyle that you enjoy and that is your basic every day hair style? Do you have a quick way to fix your hair in the morning so that you can look pretty and fresh quickly?
Do you know how to use dry shampoo if you need it?
Do you have a pretty way to style your hair easily when you are sick and in bed, so that you don't tangle your hair and also so you feel better?
Do you have a silk or satin pillowcase? Silk or satin is better for b0th your skin and hair than regular pillowcases are. You can find reasonably priced ones in home goods or bath stores.

What about your closet?
Are your clothes in good repair? Are buttons sewn on? Do you have ironing to do? Do you have things coordinated so that you can pull together something to wear in a flash? Do you make an effort to rotate your clothing so that you wear everything in your closet and not just a few things over and over?
When was the last time you cleaned out your closet? Can you do something to make your closet a more attractive space? Do you share your closet with your husband?
Are his need for closet space met?

What about your purse and other items, such as brief cases, book bags, beach totes, etc.?

Can you easily find things in your purse? Is your purse neat or is it over-stuffed? Do you have what you need with you?
(Hint -- One way to avoid carrying an over-stuffed purse is to make little emergency kits for school, office, and car. You can keep some items in these kits in your car or at your home away from home, rather than carrying them in your purse. Items to include in these might be safety pins, nail files, pain relievers, an extra pair of hose, a little comb, etc.
You can also keep a coupon container in your car, along with all those extra store points cards that you end up with.

These are good questions to ask ourselves, provided that we view the answers in a positive light. If you are on top of all of this -- congratulations! If you, like me, need to work on some of these things -- congratulations to you, too, for you now know some things that will help you make a more pleasing environment for your family, improve your appearance, and feel happier.

Managing our homes and our lives well begins from the inside out. The most intimate factors in our lives are our relationships to God and our relationships to others. In terms of physical space, the most intimate items are -- in this order -- Bible or other spiritual materials, our physical person, our bedroom, the bathroom that we use, and our purse or other carryalls. Often, we neglect these things, and concentrate primarily on the areas that are seen by others. Yet, keeping a sense of order and attractiveness in our most private spaces will help us to function more efficiently, and more serenely.

So, as we go about our week, let's think about organizing ourselves from the inside out -- starting with our hearts and working outward through our most intimate spaces.

Happy Home Keeping!

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