January 2019 Progress Report

February 2nd, 2019

January was rough. And long. And somehow went very fast and I lost all track of time. It was like 2018 but in month form.

Pounds lost: 3
Books read: 8
Books bought*: 0
Donated items: 6 trash bags, 3 bankers boxes
Sold items: 0
Subscriptions Cancelled**: 1 (Farm Fresh to You)
Categories/Places tidied: Clothes (me), Books (me), Papers (household), Laundry Room, Pantry
Overall feeling about keeping the house clean and previously tidied areas tidies: Just Ok about the house and great about clothes.

I kept up with putting my own clothes away the same day I washed them and all of my dresser drawers are still tidy. The house was going pretty well until I started decluttering the kitchen and office supplies and stuff exploded everywhere and I finished the room itself but have a giant still to be sorted/put away pile.

I did keep up with the bathrooms and the dusting/sweeping pretty well for most of the month but then the kids got sick and I got half a cold and everything slipped a little. That’s also what happened with my low carb plans. I did very well the first half of the month but then once anything goes sideways with my sinuses all I want to eat is carbs, specially chips and cookies. I made poor choices. I had actually lost much closer to 7 pounds in the first few weeks of the month and then gained 4 in the last 10 days.

I started some of the adulting research I need to do estate lawyer, taxes, financial management check, finding the kids a new dentist and pediatrician, but honestly I didn’t follow through on that much. The kids have a dentist appointment at the end of February and there’s a whole bunch of to-dos for the beginning of February. Kindergarten pre-reg, summer camp sign-up madness begins and a few other things. So not a total loss, but not feeling like a whole new person who has it together yet either.


Things I’m Using This Month

Things 3 (mobile) – Using this for to do lists, reminders, and developing a recurring cleaning schedule
Carb Manager – Using to track carbs (sort of. I hate tracking carbs. But this easily tracks net)
Happy Scale Weight tracker
Zero – Intermittent Fasting Tracker
Goodbye, Things 
The Year of Less
The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up
Tidying Up with Marie Kondo (show on Netflix)
Nailed It, You, Great British Baking Show (Shows on Netflix that I have on in the background while cleaning and sort)



*One of my goals is to make it though the kindle books I already own or get ebooks from the library  and buy as few books as possible this year. I have dozens from the last few years I have purchased but not finished or even started.

**Another goal is trying to cut down on mindless/passive spending and subscriptions I don’t use or don’t really need


Stuff In/Stuff Out: My 2019 Declutter Adventure

January 22nd, 2019

I made this commitment to myself that I would start blogging again, mostly to see if I still even liked blogging. I know I still like writing, and I do that with some regularity, but do I like writing about me? That remains to be seen.

Like much of the Netflix viewing audience, I have caught Kondo-fever. I have been decluttering and tidying and discarding like it is going out of style. Quite frankly, it probably is going out of style and might have already peaked. I am still all in.

I read the book years ago when it was released in the United States, attempted clothes, found the whole thing weird and too restrictive and gave up. I still followed her on instagram and would see amazing after posts and wistfully dream about having a tidy home. Then we moved and moved again and I did apply the principles of spark joy to many things as we moved, but I know I kept to much stuff. And to make matters worse, this home has lots of storage and it was easy for my worst stashing tendencies to takeover.

I’d already planned to start a mass declutter in January, using the method described in Lose the Clutter, Lost the Weight (minus the food an exercise methodology, because I had my own plan for that) and I was going to be a WHOLE NEW PERSON by the time my birthday in June rolls around. And then January struck and everyone got the fever and it was contagious.

So I watched the show and re-skimmed the book and got to work on my clothes. And made it through! And then books (at least the books I could access in the home and not those in storage). And made it through that. Paper almost killed me but I made it through our insanely full filing cabinet with stuff dating back to our wedding (2004!) and earlier.  I hit the ground running for misc and I am emptying all of the cabinets and drawers and sorting out school, office and craft supplies and pondering a new storage plan.

But then (and isn’t there always a but then), I found myself buying some things despite the fact I am working on getting things out of the home. A couple kids plates. New bath towels, A shredder (at least that is a straight replacement, I shredded the old one to death over the weekend). And I started to get a little nervous. The nervousness was amplified when I started listening to The Year of Less (at least I got that from the library). I realized I would never cure my clutter problems if I didn’t also cure my consumerism and mindless spending.

Each of the chapters of the book details a month of her year and opens with some stats. Amount of money saved/months sober and a couple other things. I think I might borrow that idea for some monthly recaps here. I need to focus on what my big goals are for the first half of 2019: decluttering and organizing the house, keeping it clean, losing weight, becoming a more mindful consumer, reading more books while purchasing fewer books. As it is nearing the end of the month, I probably will officially officially start my mindful consumer tracking adventure in February, I will start the actual work now. And do the best I can to figure out at least my big purchases from January and do a practice post.

I don’t know. I am a mess. It is probably time to start being my actual self on the internet.


This post contains amazon affiliate links.

Old Year Old You

December 31st, 2018

There is nothing wrong with wanting to be new or better or different or improved. And saying you want change doesn’t mean you are filled with self-loathing or hatred or despair. Or maybe it does. I don’t care if someone does resolutions or habit changes or words of the year. I don’t care if they don’t. I like the refresh and change vibe for the new year and I don’t think it disparages the old me to think I could do a few things better.  In fact. I can do a whole lot of things better.

I used to have a career in performance improvement long ago. I wired my brain to look at a system and try and find the flaws, identify the missed opportunities, rearrange the pieces to make a better, more optimal workflow. Another, trickier,  part of my job was goal setting. Part of that was convincing people who think everything is fine that there is always room for improvement, which is true for systems and workflow, but maybe not so much for people.

The week between Christmas and the start of the new year is interesting on the internet. Endless year end best of lists, which I love, and endless bickering about resolutions vs no resolutions which I love a lot less. I fully get the need for people to state they aren’t doing resolutions this year, what I don’t love is the way a lot of people make it seem like their s position on not needing a resolution  is better than the people who do.

So I wrote to here and then I had to fold some laundry and make some tea and heat up some applesauce and other various ephemera of the weekend home with kids and as I performed the mindless tasks I realized that I was doing exactly what the people I am complaining about are doing. I can’t say I believe that you be you, but add on a but. Well. Clearly I can. But I don’t think the person I am hoping to be should.

More on who I am hoping to be tomorrow. I have plans for 2019.


Big plans.


Resolution Prepping

December 19th, 2018

If you are anything like me, well then, one I feel so very sorry for you and two it is time to start thinking about New Year Resolutions. I like to obsess the entire month of December about them and then pretend to casually think them up on New Years Day and be all unprepared.


This year I am going to be a little more proactive. I know I will be going back to low carb/keto, hopefully this time as a permanent lifestyle change. (In fact, I hope to be implementing quite a few permanent lifestyle changes for 2019- more to come one that). One of the things that always trips me up when switching to a new way of eating is that step one is almost always throw out all non-compliant food, which seems so wasteful.

So this year, my action plan is to plan ahead! Between now and January 1st I am going to use up/eat up/clean up and toss all expired non-low carb food that I might eat. Spencer can keep his Easy Mac because it is disgusting and not at all tempting. The cookies? I will eat them. The candy? I volunteer as tribute. All Christmas treats lurking about will be enjoyed by the end of 2018. It must be done.

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