Monday, December 3, 2007

I'm Up for the Challenge!

Crystal over at has started the "Making Your Home a Haven Challenge."

It officially started today, and Day 1 Challenge includes:

1. Refresh Your Spirit (5 minutes)

2. Take Time to Plan (5 minutes)

3. Do Something! (5 -15 minutes)

I had not seen her post from last week where she announced she would be beginning this today. I happened over there this morning, and I thought, "Wow, we are on the same wave length today!" I had actually been encouraged over the weekend to "change my ways." My sister had given me a book titled "Shopping for Time" written by the women over at GirlTalk. It was a short book, and I read through it rather quickly. One piece in the book especially caught my attention. It was an excerpt from Martha Peace's book, Becoming a Titus 2 Woman. Here's what it said:

"I have heard of women who pride themselves on being "night people." That means they have trouble getting up in the mornings because they come alive at night. They may stay up till all hours reading,
watching televison, or pursuing some sort of interest. The next morning they are too tired to get up and care for their family....These women are not "night people." They are lazy and selfish. Who would not rather
stay up late to do whatever they please and sleep late the next day?

Once a young wife begins getting up earlier than her children and her husband, she will cease to be a "night person." She will be tired at night and go to bed at a reasonable hour so she will be there to serve her
family the next morning."

That's me. I confess. I've been lazy and selfish for the last couple of weeks, and my home was reflecting that. I really haven't been staying up late. I've just been having a hard time climbing out of bed when the alarm goes off! On these cool mornings, it's so hard to get out of a warm bed, but that's really no excuse. I had been setting my clock for 5:30 a.m. I guess I was turning it off in my sleep because I would wake up and not even remember it going off! I work part-time as a medical transcriptionist, and on the mornings that I have to work, it's a little easier to get up. On the days when I don't have any work, I just want to turn over and go back to sleep. It's easy to sleep late around here because all my children would sleep until lunchtime if I let them, but that would certainly not be a good thing. My day suffers when I sleep late, and I feel like I am two steps behind for the rest of the day. Also, I have to admit that I may have been spending too much time on my computer in the mornings working on my blog and looking at other blogs. OUCH!

A helpful piece of advice that I received from that book over the weekend was to move my alarm clock to a place where I actually have to get out of bed to turn it off. Yes, it can still be tempting to turn around and get back in bed, but I tried it this morning, and it worked! I had some projects that I really needed to tackle early this morning, so I set my alarm for 5 a.m. Wouldn't you know when I checked my email that I had more transcription work this morning then I had the entire week last week! Not to mention I lost a file and had to search and search before I could complete my work. But, I realized that had I not gotten up at 5 a.m., I would have really been in a mess.

So, at any rate, here's how I completed my Day 1 Challenge:

1. Refresh Your Spirit - Before starting any task this morning, I did my Bible reading (currently reading through Ecclesiastes) and had my personal prayer time.

2. Take Time to Plan - I started this over the weekend before I knew about the challenge. My big project for this week was to straighten our bathroom. (My husband has been installing ceramic tile in our bathroom. He's doing it a little at a time, so cleaning this area while work is going on has been a bit of a challenge for me.)

3. Do Something - I did! I completed the challenge by cleaning/organizing our front entry as suggested. Then I tackled that bathroom. I'll post before and after pictures of each. Note: I was tempted to get on my blog and immediately do this post this morning. How much do you think I would have gotten done had I done that? My thoughts exactly. I completed my projects and all of our school work. I saved the "posting to the blog" time for when Amelia took her nap and the older girls were doing their reading.

These are the before pictures. When you walk into our house, you first see the foyer and the dining room. These are the two areas I took care of today. It obviously didn't take too long as there were just a few stray objects that needed to find their proper home. I also swept the floors, dusted, and cleaned the mirror.


Now, here's a look at my big project for this morning. The bathroom!


Okay, I think Day 1 Challenge is officially complete at our home. I'm looking forward to seeing what the other challenges will be. I hope one of them will include "junk drawers." I really need some motivation to clean out and organize that one special drawer in my kitchen where every small object that doesn't have a home ends up!

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