Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Intentional Life

One of the blogs I follow posted this week about their Summer List, something they had started in their family as a way to make sure they were spending their summers "intentionally".  I loved the idea of it.  Too many years we have gotten to the end of summer and said "We didn't really do anything this summer"  or "I wish we had done (fill in the blank) this summer".  Considering my time with my kids is limited and precious, I really liked the idea of implementing something like this for our family for the summer.  Our list consists of stuff I want to see us do (less TV), things my husband has mentioned (crabbing), and things the kids have brought up (sleeping on the lawn and mini golf).  Others are general goals for the summer (daily walk and scripture study).  Here's our list:

Summer List 2011
Face Painting. Playdates. Mini Golf. Pinata Party. Backwards Day. Crabbing. Fly Kites. Wings and Waves. Albany Water Park. THD Kids Clinic. Sleep on the lawn. Gilbert House. Craft Day. Berry Picking.
Carousel Rides. Zoo. Fishing. Aquarium. Make homemade ice cream.
Ride on a boat.
Birthday Parties. Cousin Sleepovers. Hiking. Bike Rides. Less TV.
Summer Reading Club. Daily Walks. Scripture Study.

As I was working on this list, it got me thinking - what if I lived my life like this all the time?  I already make lists, lots of them.  Grocery lists, housework lists, yardwork lists, packing lists.  But what if I started making a different kind of list?  What if I started looking at all my activities in life with the mindset of spending my time intentionally?  What if every decision I made was geared towards making my life more positive and productive all the time, not just for summer vacation? 

I know most of the time I am so focused on just getting stuff done that I seldom question what I am doing to add value to my life or my family's lives.  I know it's not realistic that everything I do everyday would have some kind of value-add.  Laundry is laundry, dishes are dishes, and there's no way to do those things intentionally.  (Sometimes I intentionally don't do them).  But the books I read, the TV I watch (or don't watch), and the time I spend with my kids and husband, could all be done with a lot more "intentional-ness". 

For now I am going to start with The Summer List.  But hopefully that will turn into The Fall List, The Winter List, and maybe eventually it will just be a new way of thinking and I won't need a list at all. 

But I do love lists.......    :)

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Game Closet Redo

It is my secret dream to be a professional organizer.  In a perfect world I would quit The Depot, and get to organize other people for a living. 
For the time being, I am left to organize myself, and this time around it was the game closet in need of a makeover.  Now granted, part of the reason my game closet is disorganized is because I have 2 little boys who can't ever put a game back where they got it.  But, it needed some love.
(One of these days when I do a project, I will take some "before" pictures.  Usually I don't think about blogging it until I am into it and then the "before" is no more.  Maybe next time.)

These are the "tools" I used.  The scissors, bags and pen are for the puzzle project.  The tape is for fixing broken game boxes as you go.
We had 13 puzzles that took up way too much space in the closet.  So to start out with, I went through and dumped all the pieces into their own ziploc bags, which I get at The Dollar Store for, you guessed it, $1 a box.  They come in all different sizes, which works nicely for different size puzzles.  Then I cut the picture off the original box, put it in the bag with the pieces, and voila, you get this:

I use the label to write down how many pieces are in the puzzle.
Then they all stack nicely in a small bin I also got at The Dollar Store....

which fits neatly on the shelf!
The next step was to clean up all the cards and poker chips. 
 Again, I used the zipper bags I got at The Dollar Store.
They all went into a basket I got at, yes, The Dollar Store. 
Are you sensing a theme here?  I like to organize, but I am CHEAP.

And there you have it.  A neatly organized game closet!  At least until the boys play another game.....

Thursday, June 9, 2011

My little loves

A friend of mine told me today that she loved pictures of my kids because they were always touching each other, and she could tell how much they loved each other. I hadn't ever really thought of it that way, but this afternoon, I sat back and just watched them play for awhile. They are completely happy just the three of them.