MISconceptions and Mr. Style

It’s one of those crazy summers—the kind where we have no idea what is going to happen in two months so we are planning, planning, planning, but all we can do is wait and trust. The Lord has always taken care of us, from when LT and I were best friends trying desperately NOT to fall in love with each other, to a long-distance courtship and engagement, to a wedding during a blizzard in Minnesota, to finding out we made a honeymoon love child, to surviving our first deployment, and most recently facing infertility, joblessness, and homelessness.

It’s been a crazy ride, that’s for sure. You can imagine the stress as we try to figure out where we are moving, what we will be doing, and where we will be living. All this planning and praying doesn’t leave much time to blog about the mom life, especially when most of my thoughts over the past nine months have been about everyday failures at being a mother and housewife, not to mention being depressed about not being able to procreate, especially since it was too easy the first time.

Our faith has sustained us. Since the first day of our marriage, we prayed that we would have children in God’s timing, not ours. His timing seems to always be different than ours, yet we do not regret our prayers. His timing and his will are infinitely greater than ours. What would I do without Little Champ brightening every day? He is my little sunshine—what a blessing he is.

Mr. Style combing his hair

We look forward to meeting another blessing in God’s timing. Through many months of failed pregnancy tests and false pregnancy symptoms, I’ve finally learned to surrender. Christian surrender is not like the surrender of the world. Without faith, my surrender would lead to hopelessness. With my faith, my surrender leads to hopeful trust in the Lord.

My prayer for other couples trying to conceive is that you would surrender to hope, trusting that if you love the Lord and are faithful to him, he will give you what is best for you. When I get what I want, things turn out okay. When I get what God wants for me, things turn out perfectly.

My prayer for others who face a big, convoluted chaos of a summer—that God would lift the clouds of confusion and bring you clarity so you can see just enough of his plan to move forward.

Dear reader, expect my posts this summer to be few and far between. This fall, I hope to pick up again and give you updates on our new home and LT’s new job (LT will not be an LT anymore!). I’ll try to get back to posting once a week, either tutorials or updates or photos. If we buy a house, expect to see lots of before-and-afters! If you really miss Little Champ and Wifosaurus that much, be sure to subscribe so you will be notified of our life changes when they occur, or Like Bewildered Mother on Facebook, or follow me on Pinterest.

Note: This post has taken a Christian turn! I do not hide my beliefs because it is a major part of who I am. This blog is primarily about being a mother and wife. It isn’t a blog about Christianity, but one might consider it a Christian blog simply for the fact that a Christian is writing it. I do occasionally blog on biblical topics here.
If you are not a Christian, please be assured that I will not try to force my views upon you—if Jesus didn’t shove religion down people’s throats, then who am I to do such a thing? I’ll do my best to be loving no matter your background. I ask that my readers would be respectful to each other, even if you disagree on politics or religion. Disrespect is not allowed on my blog, and I will take action to remove or block comments if necessary.

Clean Sweep: Overview

Simplify your life by getting rid of clutter. “Getting rid of” means just that—you need it out of your house.

The next six weeks, I’ll share with you what worked and what didn’t work for me as I eliminate lots of stuff, organize, rearrange, and pack up my entire house to move across country.

Ready to embark on Operation: Clean Sweep with me?

Step One: Make a plan.

I don’t know about you, but I get overwhelmed really easily. At least when it comes to cleaning and organizing. If you are as much of a clutterbug as I am, then you know things have to get worse before they can get better. Making a plan will help you tackle things in smaller pieces.

My Plan

  • Decide themes/color schemes for each room. Here’s an idea of my colors (Warning: Pinterest Board!). This post on Young House Love is a great read about picking colors that create a sense of continuity in your home.
  • One room at a time—wall to wall—separate EVERYTHING into toss, recycle, give/sell, keep, store. If you want to make the process simpler, make three distinctions: Keep, toss, sell.
  • Gather books and separate by hardcover (for display), paperback, business/professional books, research, non-fiction, inspirational, etc. See if any paperback books are free for e-readers.
  • Magazines: highlight the good stuff, rip out ads, document/index, put in pretty boxes (tutorial coming in a few days!)
  • Decor: divide into spring, summer, fall, winter. Eliminate anything that doesn’t match each room or isn’t completely loved. I rotate decor between my bedroom and the living room so 75% isn’t in storage all the time.
  • Toys: Give away obnoxious toys, divide by age and season.
  • Photos: Divide by subject (artsy versus personal, family pics), divide by season. Frame.
  • Clothes: Get rid of everything not absolutely loved. Shoes, too. Divide by season, formality, and age (for kids). Recycle old T-shirts into a gigantic quilt. (Tutorials herehere, and here.)
  • Crafts: divide by medium, divide supplies and tools, get rid of crap.
  • Collect all containers/storage: Decide in which room to store them and what to put in each.
  • PAPERS: Recycle, shred, digitalize, or file. Organize notes into binders.
  • Furniture: Decide what to get rid of.

YOU

Next week (or later this week) I’ll update you on how the office Clean Sweep went. Until then, what’s your plan for getting rid of clutter?

Operation: Clean Sweep

Did you ever watch the TLC show Clean Sweep?

Yes, ladies, it’s the show with Eric Stromer, the carpenter who spreads paint on the wall with his hands.

Ahem. Anyway, it was a show in which a team would visit a cluttered home, choose the two scariest rooms, and declutter them. They’d first remove EVERYTHING from the two rooms. Then they’d bring it all out onto the front lawn, where they would divide the stuff between Keep, Sell, and Toss (or donate). Then the organizer would be brought in and purge everything.

No, Mrs. Paulsen. You cannot keep your porcelain cat lamp. It’s awful. Say goodbye.

Then the husband and wife would have competing garage sales, and whoever sold more stuff would get to choose something from their spouse’s “Keep” pile to get rid of. Drama and hilarity ensue.

Meanwhile, aforementioned carpenter man is building custom built-in storage for the family, and a professional designer is revamping the room. They put all the keep stuff back into the rooms, and then reveal the rooms to the family.

Wow! I can’t believe it! It’s amazing! It looks great!

You get the idea.

Well, it’s time for us to undertake a clean sweep ourselves. LT and I really haven’t accumulated much in our 2.5 years of marriage, but that doesn’t mean we don’t have too much stuff. Last week I found Flonase that had expired.

Expiration date: January 2006.

That was before I graduated high school. Since I graduated high school, I’ve moved TEN TIMES.

Time to purge.

The Plan

In lieu of bringing everything I own in my entire house onto our front lawn (as I’m sure our housing would have an issue with that), I’m going to be playing a crazy musical chairs sort of game.

We are having a party in about 6 weeks. I need to get rid of everything that needs to get rid of, and then put everything back in its place. After the party, then I’ll pack it all up for our move. Why put everything back? Well, to ensure that I have the room for everything I’m keeping. Otherwise I’ll get rid of more stuff. Plus, I’d much rather pack an organized house than a disorganized house, because the last 10 moves I have packed disorganization. Then I unpacked disorganization. Vicious cycle, really.

Operation: Clean Sweep

Want to join me? Stay tuned. I’ll post my plans and the results: successes and failures.

Are you a blogger? Use the image above to let people know you are participating! Copy and paste the code below onto your own blog:

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