Works 4 Me Wednesday: Blogs I Follow
Life has become increasingly hectic in my household as my babies have turned into true toddlers/pre-schoolers. They are so busy loving life, telling stories, creating, and just blessing me with their energy. And because of that my time to spend on personal projects and finding great deals and coupons to share with all of you has dwindled. You may have noticed that Dearly Domestic has taken a slower pace lately. Forgive me for that! I hope to pick up the pace again, but right now life is just extremely demanding on other areas of my time. Because of that I wanted to share with you today a few of my favorite resources. These resources are from my personal list of websites and blogs I visit on a daily or weekly basis. Some of them have been life transforming for me! (TRULY!) I hope you will find them to be of value and a place to look for great tips, deals, grocery guides, and coupons, recipes, and time and energy saving tips.
*My favorite money saving sites (in no particular order...)
*My favorite recipe sites:
My favorite home and organizational sites:
Works 4 Me Wednesday: Life Organized
Have you been following along with the "30 Days to a More Organized You" posts? If so then you are working on creating a more organized and cleaner home for yourself and your family. I go through my home about 1-2 times per year just like this. I organize each of these areas. And in the process I throw out any items that we just haven't used since the last time I went through. But organizing those items others can see is not the only way I like to keep my life organized. Below are a list of things I regularly do in order to keep things in order.
*I only keep items in my house that we currently use. I cannot stand clutter! Any item that we aren't using goes to the Purple Heart, Salvation Army or yard sale.
*I try to keep items we are definately keeping in their appropriate and designated places. At the end of the day all items are returned to their homes. All "like" items together.
*I keep on a schedule. It isn't a strict one and there is plenty of room for flexibility. But my kiddos nap at the same time every day, go to bed at the same time every day. We eat at the same times (roughly) and we have certain days of the week assigned to certain chores. (For ex: Thursday is bill paying and balancing the checkbook night.)
*We check our budget together as husband and wife each month(sometimes a few times). We reconcile all our purchases and money we are putting into savings and towards extra home payments.
*I have 1 calendar where I put ALL important appointments and dates to remember. I check it often.
*I regularly order photo prints and keep the kiddos photo albums updated to within 3 months of time. I delete pictures from the camera that I already ordered and back them up.
*I don't go to bed until all dishes are put away, laundry done and folded, and house picked up and back in order. (I usually shower before bed too because I just can't seem to get up before the kids to do so.)
*As soon as mail enteres our house I go through it and toss anything that is junk, file all bills, and file everything else to keep. It DOES NOT stay laying on the kitchen island.
*I keep up with the laundry daily.
*I make a menu. And I make a grocery list.
What do you do to stay organized? I would love to know! Drop me a note at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know!
Works 4 Me Wednesday: Picking Produce
I LOVE summer! I love having off with my kiddos. I love the warm sunshine in my face. I love the carefreeness (is that a word?) of it all. And I love the fresh fruit and vegetables available. One of my favorite summertime hobbies is to take my little ones picking fruit. Today we took a trip to Blueberry Hill to pick 13 pounds of blueberries. The blueberries were plentiful and relatively easy to pick. (As easy as it can be with 2 toddlers along.) And the price? Much cheaper than the grocery store. They were $3/lb. (That's about half the price of the grocery store.) I guarantee the berries are bigger and sweeter as well. So, what will I do with 13 pounds of blueberries?
* Blueberry muffins
These are my four favorite things to do with blueberries. I will first rinse the berries. Then, place them on cookie trays (with lips) in a single layer. Pop that tray in the freezer for about 20 minutes. Then remove from freezer and place the berries in freezer bags. This way the berries don't stick and you can enjoy as much or as little as you like. Blueberries are good in the freezer up to a year if vaccuum sealed.
I thought you might enjoy a few photos from our picking as well...
Works 4 Me Wednesday: Summer Vacation
Summer Vacation is upon us. For some mothers it is the beginning of the never ending "I'm bored" chant. And while I know that you have many comebacks already up your sleeve in retaliation of that statement (like "I have plenty you can do!") here's my summer fun list of things you can do with young children over the summer. Almost all of these are on my list for my little ones.
*Visit your local library and partake in their guest reader visits. Almost every library has special events for free and geared for young children.
*Visit the nearby Farmer's Market.
*Take a walk through your local State or County park and go on a scavenger hunt.
*Get a season pass to a nearby attraction (We're doing Dutch Wonderland this year because my littlest one is free and we are so close to this attraction that it will pay for itself within just a few visits.)
*Many theatres offer free movies during the day on certain days of the month. Give them a call and make a plan.
* Local factory tours can be a lot of fun and often offer free samples too.
*Bowl for Free (The Summer Kids Bowl Free program has more details here.)
*Make a lunch date with friends at the park
*Have a water day with water balloons, blow up pools, and nerf water guns
What are you doing for fun this summer?
Works 4 Me Wednesday: Cleaning Schedules
Last week I shared with you my weekly cleaning schedule during the school year (when I am working full time.) You can read that post here. I am a person who totally thrives on routine. But some of you are not or simply cannot stick to a weekly routine. So, this week I thought I would share a cleaning alternative. Instead of sticking with a weekly routine schedule you could use a checklist. Below I have listed the items I would personally include in that checklist. The checklist offers the flexibility of being able to pick one day and clean everything on the list or check it off throughout the week as you go.
My Cleaning Checklist
- Dust all bedrooms
- Dust all main living areas
- Dust ceiling fans and light fixtures
- Windex all glass and mirrors (FYI: I do not clean all my windows inside and out each week. I only clean the main ones my children touch constantly and the glass on my oven and patio doors. )
- Vacuum bedrooms
- Vacuum main areas
- Clean toilets
- Wipe down appliances
- Wipe inside microwave
- Cleean Bathtubs
- Clean all sink basins and faucets
- Scrub tile and linoleum floors
- Disinfect and Clean Kitchen Counter tops well
- Wipe down baseboards
- Take out all trash
- Empty Lint Trap in Dryer
- Throw out old magazines
- Pay bills/balance checkbook
- Wash, Dry, FOld, Put away laundry
- Clean Bed Sheets
- Clean bathroom and other area rugs
- THrow out leftovers and expired food in fridge, wipe clean
This is not a deep cleaning list. It is rather a weekly, checklist of major items to be cleaned each week. Tweak, remove, or add items that you feel meet your specific cleaning needs. This is simply, what works 4 me.