Speed Cleaning Guide

Saturday, January 10th, 2009

I've miraculously gotten all my personal and business paperwork filed in a coherent way. This is huge! A laber maker sure makes it easier than I expected. I also went through all my old magazines and took out the pages I wanted to keep. After all this paperwork clean-up, we recycled a ton this week! I also got a good tip to sign-up to limit junk mail at DMA Choice and credit card offers at Opt-Out Prescreen.

Through all my sorting, I found this really cool little fold-out guide to speed cleaning.
It's very handy, so I made a pdf of it to print out:

speed cleaning guide

Most of our bins are cleaned out and I've listed a bunch of stuff on craigslist to sell. Current project for this weekend is to clean out my car and hopefully list it for sale. Its the only thing keeping us from being debt free except the house. Yay for no more credit card debt or worries!

I also have a bunch of old unlabeled VHS tapes that I've unpacked. I'm going through them and figuring out what is on each to get rid of unnecessary ones as well. So far I've watched "The Secret" that my mom sent a year or two ago. It was actually really interesting. Decluttering 2009 is off to a great start!

A Richer Life with Less Stuff

Friday, January 2nd, 2009

Yay for money I wasn't paying attention to! $40 in Discover rewards, $50 in change to cash out at Coinstar, and about $100 in store returns I'll be making this weekend, random $9 refund check, $15 in bank account interest. There is money around when I look hard enough.

Hopefully I can do about 8 hours of work this weekend to make up for some vacation time off and make some extra cash designing business cards and letterhead for my tile contractor.

Last night I finished reading "It's All Too Much: An Easy Plan for Living a Richer Life with Less Stuff" by Clean Sweep's Peter Walsh. Great book to help me keep up my momentum!

I am totally amazed at the amount of progress I've had with Flylady in the past 5 or 6 months without even REALIZING it. Our master bedroom is completely decluttered including the closets and drawers. I even filled up an extra bag worth of purges I did yesterday.

I finished unpacking our master bathroom with storage room to spare! I donated a box full of unused personal care products and threw out a lot of expired items.

There are empty cupboards in the kitchen and there will be more space as I plan to sell of any antique glass I don't really "love." Less to store until our living room and dining room are done.

I've been trying to keep to a specific system. Once the house is clean, THEN I can sort and declutter one area or bin a day, only sotring through what I can in an hour or two. I still need to go through about 15 storage bins stashed around the house, mostly items that haven't been unpacked since March 2007. I've went through 5 this past week. We now have a big stack of empty bins that I'll probably unload on Craigslist or something.

Looking forward to 2009

Sunday, December 28th, 2008
I'm working on getting back on a more normal schedule now that most of remodeling phase I is complete. I'm happy to say that besides a few paint touch-ups, kitchen and bath window restoration, and the back door (waiting til good weather for this), we are essentially done! Before we dig into the work necessary to start phase II (most of the original floor of the house: living room, dining room, hall and 2 small bedrooms), I'm working on Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover plan to make sure we have a substantial savings and emergency fund before we start spending on the house again. It will likely take us the next 2 months to build up the remainder of the 6-month emergency fund that I've been working on. I have about 2/3 saved so far. Our only debt is on my car, which I'd like to sell and buy one outright with cash in 2009 as well. The other goal is to buy only with my debit card. It's too easy to use CC and I know I would save more even though I pay those cards off every month. I'd also like to get a permanent position at PGE once the current project I'm leading comes closer to completion. Hopefully for a similar salary to what I make now. I'd also like to do a European vacation in 2009, but its the last priority in the current economy because I will only do this if we don't have to crack into savings or CC to go. I'd rather have the remodel done than take a fancy vacation as well. :) I also need to focus more on the Flylady system to keep the house clean and get back on the 6-day a week workout routine, instead of about 4 which it's hovering around now. Here's to a great year!

Moving forward

Monday, March 19th, 2007

Home inspection brought up ZERO issues thank goodness, so our sales price was set and the appraisal was done last week. I think that must have been fine too as we didn't hear that the house was overvalued or anything. :)

To recap other things last week: We were supposed to get into the house on Monday, but the sellers were still there clearing it out as of Tuesday afternoon. I planned on deep cleaning Monday night, so that obviously didn't happen. HOWEVER, our TOTALLY AWESOME FABULOUS realtor offered to pay for his friend's cleaning service to come in at his expense!!

The cleaning crew spend a good 20-man hours between a few different ladies busting it out and finished up Thursday night. I stopped over while they were cleaning one day and the girl was like having an aerobic workout routine with soap and bleach on the fridge. The lazy side of myself about had a 'gasm of happiness. That could've been ME! The horror! :) I was really glad they were going all out. They even removed the faucet handles and cleaned inside, washed the walls, etc. This will help Jeremy's allergies tremendously too as he has trouble with dust and kitties (they had a kitty in there for the last month).

Anyway, we basically didn't do anything in the new house last week as to stay out of the cleaning crew's way. The bathroom plumbing is jacked up though. There is some major clog up in the bathroom pipe and the toilet takes like 30 seconds of holding the handle down to flush and it, and the tub doesn't drain well either. The toilet was all backed up when I got there Friday night with old pewp... We hope the sewer isn't all trashed and it was just a cleaning person ignoring the "toilet not flushing" sign I put up. I spend about 20 minutes with a plunger and it wasn't helping and was geee-ross!

The sewer line is old and we had it inspected with a camera, and it was supposed to be OK for now, but needs to be replaced at some point. Jeremy bought a pipe snake, hopefully he can move out the clog himself. I'm having a plumber come by on Tuesday for an estimate to replace all the plumbing with copper anyway, so we'll see.

We busted out some major packing this weekend. We filled the POD up with the majority of the stuff we'll be putting in storage for the next few months. We're probably about 50% done with packing up the rest of the house stuff, and hopefully a couple more nights next week we'll be ready. Our friends offered to help us with the U-haul pack and unpack next Saturday.

Oh and lastly, I took Max to the vet on Tuesday and he got a full kitty workup. It turns out he had been neutered, so he was likely an abandoned pet kitty by a previous owner in the neighborhood. He didn't have any diseases thank goodness, and I got all his vaccinations up to date. No fleas, mites or anything like that either. I also got him microchipped and pedicured as he had monster nails. I need to find a good collar for him as he already got the cute star one I got him off and lost. :(

Week 3/11-3/17

Sunday, March 11th, 2007

We haven't heard back on the home inspection of our current house yet. I'm hoping everything is fine as we tried hard to fix all the things we knew of, and we cleaned the gutters and that sort of thing that always comes up. I'm not too worried about it. The buyer said he'd pay us to have the hot tub all filled and balanced and all in a note they left after the inspection, so I'm sure its fine. Best part, we can use our hot tub again before we leave (as it costs about $50 to fill up for chemicals and needed a new filter... all of which the buyer said he'd pay for). :)

I've been compiling a list and stockpiling cleaning supplies to bust out the initial house cleaning on Monday when we get the keys. We closed Friday, but agreed to give them the weekend to finish clearing out the house no rent-backs.

Schedule for next week is as follows:

S - Wal*Mart trip to get last minute supplies and see if the layaway area will give me a bunch of boxes (they've been nice about this in the past). Workout.

M - Work @ downtown office until I get a call from Erik (our cutiepatootie realtor) to come get the keys :) Then clean up a storm. Jeremy will help when he gets off work. I'll probably watch Veronica Mars or the british Office DVDs (*note to self* Have Jeremy download US torrents of The Office up to date)

T - Take Max to vet for free check-up**!! Work from home about noon to 5:30. 6:30 Direct Buy orientation (we signed up *holy expensive* for their service, but we get everything at cost direct from manufacturers, and we'll make the membership fee back alone in kitchen and bath remodel savings, not to mention contractor discounts of 10-25%) 9:00 pm - Make cake and frosting for class, Workout

**OMG I didn't mention that the neighbors said we could take Max with us when we move! They were actually worried about him living out here as there's always racoons eating his food, even skunks! EEK! They said there was also a young coyote that was wandering around the field during the day across the street! AHH! Our street in the city is not trafficked much, so we think he'll be ok. I'm researching on the best way to acclimate him to his new home. We'll likely keep him in the huge basement (which has large windows, lots of light) for a week or two with a feline pheromone plug-in thing to calm him and I bought him a harness and extending leash to let him explore. Anyways, back to the vet check-up... he may need to be neutered. Hopefully he doesn't have any kitty afflictions as he's likely never been vaccinated as the neighbors said he was just a wandering neighborhood kitty they started to feed because he was really skinny and tame a few years ago when they moved in. They think he's about 4 years old or so.

W - 10 am meeting at work (downtown office), work til 6ish. Maybe clean at new house for a few hours. Return home to frost cake for class (allow 2 hours). Workout if I have time.

T - 12 pm special lunch downtown for work. Likely work from home part of day. 6 pm cake decorating class (3rd week of 4). Workout. Start going through bins in garage and packing into the POD we had delivered for storage for the next few months.

F - Work downtown, clean house more, or visit Direct Buy to order things we'll need in the next few weeks, or pack POD up more...

Sat 3/17 - ?

Sat/Sun 3/24-3/25: MOVING DAY!