Day 145: A Brisk Walk and Then Five Hours in the Garage (With Motivating Music)

45 minute brisk walk

I could see the sun peeping through the curtains when I woke up this morning. I knew that a brisk walk would make me feel better and hopefully help my neck and headache that I’ve had for a couple of days. I was out for 45 minutes which certainly blew away a few cobwebs and made me feel good.

I really didn’t feel like sitting around again for another day nursing my head, so after breakfast I popped into the garage to see if I could make some progress. As soon as I walked in, I just knew that I could easily spend most of the day in there getting things done. The mess and lack of space makes it a place that no one else (apart from me) wants to be, so it doubles up as a nice little hideaway.

Music is a motivator

I was listening to an audio book at first, but then I stumbled upon on an old radio. I found a station that mostly had non-stop music. Almost every song was one that I could sing and dance along to. Music is such a great motivator for me so I started getting things done a lot quicker.

Help arrived but not for long

The girls came in after about an hour to see where I was, but they soon got bored as there wasn’t much they could help with apart from breaking up a cathedral made of cardboard that one of them made many years ago for a school project. Although I’ve been trying to keep it safe, it had a got a bit battered and dusty. It suddenly didn’t seem as sentimental to us as it used to. We took a couple of photos before destroying it.

The girls left me to carry on because they knew I’d be more productive without them there. There’s something quite therapeutic about going through boxes of old stuff from different phases of my life. What I didn’t realise until this point was that my headache had completely gone (probably went with the clutter). I spent a few hours bagging things up for charity and throwing other stuff away. I ended up with two bags of rubbish, five charity bags and a whole pile of cardboard and other recycling.

Decluttering the garage

I can’t explain how happy I felt going through boxes, throwing things away and moving things around for later sorting. All very satisfying.

A very productive day all round.

Until tomorrow…

Sandra

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Day 144: The Not So Perfect, Perfect Day

A Relaxing Bath

I have been feeling the stress in my neck and shoulders again this weekend; the type that gives me a headache and nausea feeling. I think that’s three weekends on the trot. I went to have a lie down mid morning after the grocery shopping had arrived and whilst I was doing that my eldest daughter surprised me by tackling one of the clutter castles in the kitchen. She knew how I would want to go through every single piece of paper, so she put things in separate piles to talk to me about when I came downstairs.

Once we’d finished that, I thought that a relaxing bath would be a good idea, but remembered the bath needed cleaning. So, both of my lovely girls said that they would help to clean the bathroom first. I showed them what to do and before I knew it we had a clean bath, surfaces and toilet. There was also a nice pile of empty bottles for recycling.

The girls ran me a bubble bath and lit some candles and let me to have an hour to myself, listening to calming music and mindfulness tracks. I also had a flick through a couple of little books that I have about relaxing.

The headache hadn’t gone away by teatime so I asked my youngest to type up this blog for me. As I dictated, the two of us came up with today’s post. The title was originally called ‘Delegating the Cleaning, Decluttering and Writing to my Girls’, but my eldest thought that ‘The Not So Perfect, Perfect Day’ sounded better, so we decided to change it. We then cuddled up in my bed and watched a film.

A very relaxing day

Although I have given myself a day off to relax, I have still got some decluttering and cleaning done so you could say that I am learning to delegate. This is something that I am not usually good at, as I like to keep control of everything. Maybe this could be part of the new weekend routine. They seemed quite happy when I suggested that.

Until tomorrow…

Sandra

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Day 143: Dust Behind the TV Cabinet… Who Doesn’t Have That?

Today was one of those days where I was on a work call one minute, and the next thing I know I was being called into the lounge to help my eldest teen move furniture around. I had no intention of pulling the TV cabinet out and cleaning behind it today… I mean, who does that in the middle of a working day?

There was no stopping her; she was in a cleaning mood. As I had a work call to make, she got her sister (my youngest teen) to help. There was a lot of unplugging going on, as well as dusting, wiping down skirting boards and surfaces, moving shelves in the cabinet, and removing the AV unit and speakers (which haven’t worked for a while).

It was a bit embarrassing when she asked me when the unit had last been pulled out and cleaned behind (ahem… I have absolutely no idea). When she put everything back, there was a lot more space and no clutter or dirt. Perfect!

After clearing space and cleaning

Unfortunately I had to carry on working this afternoon and my husband wanted to switch Sky TV back on and spend time in the lounge, so we never got to go back and finish cleaning the room. What my girls did today though was fantastic and, just like yesterday, I was feeling very grateful to my new little helpers.

It’s bank holiday weekend now and my daughter has asked me if she can help clean the bathrooms tomorrow. She’s definitely keeping me on my toes at the moment. I’m going with the flow with this one.

Until tomorrow…

Sandra

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Day 142: Feeling Positive About the Help I’m Getting Around the House

Now that my eldest teen has started tidying up more in the kitchen and dining room, I have to be careful what I leave lying around in case she moves it. I’ve always been in charge (control) of the clutter and mess so it’s been all too easy to let things stay where they were until I had time to move them. The only pressure I got was the pressure that I put on myself.

After dinner this evening my daughter got quite annoyed that no one cleared the table and put the plates in the dishwasher. After working all day and cooking dinner all I wanted to do was put my feet up; however, I felt that I owed it to her to help, so that she felt supported with her new process. She was happy and I was very grateful.

Is this new help going to help me (and everyone else) not leave things lying around? I hope so.

This is a strange place for me to be in, as I’ve always tried to do it all without asking for help. It’s certainly making me think twice now when I say to myself ‘I’ll just put that there,’ or ‘I’ll do that later’.

If this help continues consistently, I think we’ll all be in a better place before the end of lockdown and I’ll be able to move towards my goal a lot quicker. I just need to relinquish the control that I have over it all which is the hardest part for me to do.

I still wouldn’t feel comfortable with anyone touching or moving the stuff in the garage or spare room! That’s a whole other story.

One step at a time…

Until tomorrow…

Sandra

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Day 141: Happiness is Different For Everyone. What Does it Mean to You?

I woke up this morning determined to be positive about the day. It’s not that I’m not normally positive, it’s just that there’s a lot going on at the moment and sometimes I need to reflect on things by myself and clear the mental clutter before I face anyone else. What also helps is when I stumble upon blogs, articles, tweets that inspirational words get me thinking about things from a different perspective.

One particular thing that inspired me today was reading a few posts on KalvinFive’s Thought Journal and the second one was a tweet question from one of my favourite authors Jack Canfield. The question on the tweet was ‘What are some things that make you the happiest?’ Off the top of my head (in the midst of lockdown) here are some of the things on my list:

  • Waking up to a new day to see what it brings
  • Writing to inspire others
  • Creating space in my mind to grow
  • Getting to know my family better by listening more
  • Calling someone to find out if they are ok
  • Pottering around the garden (when the weather is nice this sort of replaces housework and it’s very easy to let your mind wander)
  • Finding healthy recipes that are easy to make and taste really good (and I didn’t really enjoy cooking before lockdown)
  • Being inspired by someone else’s words whether it be a text, blog, article or book
  • Walking and appreciating the beauty out there

What would be on your list?

Until tomorrow…

Sandra

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Day 140: Feeling Grateful For This Beautiful Weather During Lockdown

After work, I spent some time pottering around in the garden and made some space for the plants that I picked up from the supermarket yesterday. I got a bargain whilst walking down the fruit and veg aisle… three climbing plants for £5.

My daughter wanted to help in the garden, so we worked together to decide where they should go and then I showed her how to plant them. The two jasmine plants went in the area that I tidied last week where the wooden trellis is on the wall. A perfect place for them to eventually climb up.

Jasmine plant

We then planted the clematis in the wooden trellis box.

Clematis plant

Getting out for a bit of exercise

Views from our walks this week

I’ve managed to get out for a lunchtime walk with my husband two days running now and the weather has been fantastic. There are definitely more people about, but then we are all allowed to have unlimited exercise now. It’s still very important to stick to the social distancing rules though.

I was surprised to see Costa open, but not so surprised to see a queue outside. I suppose it’s a treat for those that like it, although I’m not a coffee drinker myself.

Until tomorrow…

Sandra

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Day 139: This Kitchen is For Dancing But Not For Clutter Castles

My daughter helped me tidy the kitchen last night and then disappeared upstairs saying she had an idea. Half an hour later she came down with this message in a frame which she had created herself on her computer.

My husband and I instantly loved it, as we all do like to be silly and dance around the kitchen. She found the frame in the spare room collecting dust from a shopping spree that we had a couple of years ago. We bought different sizes and never used them.

Clutter castles

This got me looking at the remaining clutter lying around including this clutter castle in the corner and the mess on the dining room table.

Clutter castle

After we decluttered, my daughter had an idea how to make the table look nicer and suggested putting some decoration in the centre. She then laid the table to show me how different our dining room could look. She put a plant that was on the breakfast bar in a different pot and we picked up a few candles whilst we were at the supermarket this evening. We were really happy with the final result.

She’s got some great ideas and seems to really want to help just like she did with the kitchen cupboards and drawers the other week.

Until tomorrow…

Sandra

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