Set A Timer And Go….

Today’s tiny tip on a Thursday post is just a reminder to myself and to you.  You can accomplish quite a lot more than you think in just five minutes!

I confess I’ve been having motivation problems for longer than just today or this week or honestly, this month even.  Today for some reason I hit a tipping point and HAD to do something about the state of this house.

I went back to basics.  I knew I couldn’t do much since I had already wasted too much time on-line and had to work later this morning.  I decided to go back to setting the timer and working for just 5 minutes in each room.

In FIVE minutes I did the following in each room in our house:


  • Made the Bed
  • Cleaned The Mirror
  • Emptied The Trash, sprayed trash can with Lysol, put in new trash bag
  • Cleaned, wiped off sink
  • Sprayed cleaner in the toilet
  • Changed out the hand towel


  • Unloaded dishwasher
  • Loaded Dishwasher and started it

Living Room

  • Cleared off couch (always covered with kids and my stuff)
  • Put away paper shredder
  • Sprayed air freshener
  • Bonus:  Sprayed air freshener in all rooms!

Main Bathroom

  • Cleaned Mirror
  • Cleaned Sink and Back of Toilet
  • Emptied trash, sprayed can with Lysol, and added new bag
  • Put away all my “products” with the exception of still hot curling iron
  • Wiped off really dirty area of floor that has been bothering me all week
  • Recycled empty soap container, added new full one


It doesn’t seem like much but the house feels so much better (and so do I!) with just those little five-minute actions in each room.

I planned to write and share this post in just 5 minutes but it actually took me closer to 10 minutes.  Still, not very long at all!

What can you accomplish in 5 minutes?  I bet it


Happy Homemaker Monday, Hello February!

February is always an interesting month.  Sometimes despite being so short, it tends to feel like the longest of the winter months to me.  It’s also a busy one for us though.

A few of the events in February for us are: my husband’s birthday, Valentine’s Day, days off school plus conferences, and other family birthdays.  Add in work and school event schedules and it can get a bit busy.

Planning my weeks by linking up to Sandra over at Diary of A Stay At Home Mom will help.

The Weather

The sky looks like winter but the air is whispering the idea of spring to us.  There’s a slight chance of rain today but the high is supposed to be almost 60 degrees today and tomorrow. Then, it drops down into the mid 30s for Wednesday & Thursday before jumping up to 60 degrees again on Friday, and Saturday shows almost 70!

On My Bedside Table

It’s a mess (nothing new there) with a book, my camera charging, a cardboard box, and some clothes that need to be put away.  Cleaning it is on my list for this week.

On My Reading Pile

I went to the library last week (twice!).  I even turned in my other books on time, feel like I need a gold star for that one!   Just checked the camera, fully, charged, so I decided to simply show you a picture of my reading pile:  The title of the book on top is Man in the High Castle, I had to request it from a different library branch.

On My TV

Like quite a few others, we watched the Superbowl last night (well, most of it, G and I made a quick run to Target right after half-time.  Great show!).

Oh and I watched Sharknado: The Fourth Awakens on Saturday.  I am not even embarrassed to admit that I absolutely love the Sharknado movies, I get such a kick out of their goofy antics.  I somehow missed the third one and may watch that one soon.

This week I’ll probably just watch my usual shows, Supergirl, The Flash, DC Legends of Tomorrow.


I’m still on a mission to clear out our fridge, freezer, and pantry. Last night’s Superbowl snacks came from those places (chili, little smokies in biscuit dough, chips, and chocolate chip cookies).  This week’s focus is on the freezer.

Breakfasts this week will be banana bread and toaster waffles.

MONDAY:  French Toast and Sausage (from freezer)

TUESDAY:  I’ll decide on this after cleaning out the freezer, I know there’s a package of chicken thighs in there that are relatively recent plus the eternal surplus of fish sticks.  It’s also Chik-Fil-A night for the middle school so I do have a back up plan.

WEDNESDAY:  This is my husband’s birthday so I’m leaving it open for his choice although I’m thinking maybe chicken and noodles (not from the freezer!) and of course, chocolate cake.

THURSDAY:  BBQ sandwiches and French Fries (all from freezer except the buns) *I work 9-5*

FRIDAY:  Chinese out for my husband’s birthday *I work 9-5*

On My To-Do List

My mind wants to put millions of things on my to-do list.  The rest of me is struggling to stay awake.  For some reason, J was up a few times last night and then, so was I.  He’s fine this morning so not sure what it was about but I’m tired this morning.

  1. Continue to clean out pantry (just needs organized at this point), freezers, and fridge
  2. Clean off bedside table, really whole area beside bed
  3. Get husband a birthday card and gift (should probably be number one on the list)
  4. Go to grocery store
  5. Give house a good cleaning especially the floors


I’ve decided to work on my photography by picking a different place to walk and take photos two times a week.  So, I guess I’m trying to create pretty pictures? 

I’m also trying to create a more clutter free and organized home.   The weather gave me the spring cleaning bug!

Looking Forward To

My next outside adventure with the camera, also the couple of days off school the boys will get this month.

Looking Around The House

See number 5 on my to-do list!

From The Camera

I went for a long walk at Little Blue Valley Park yesterday.  Interesting fact about this park is it used to be home to a popular drag racing venue.  Currently, it’s mostly undeveloped except for the numerous paved trails (I walked 2+ miles out there!) although they are building softball fields on part of it. 

Something Fun To Share

It’s National Chopsticks Day?

What I’m Wearing Today

Navy blue high school band t-shirt & tan corduroy pants plus tennis shoes.  Basically, the clothes I threw on to do the school run this morning.

Simple Pleasure

Playing the Candy Crush Saga game on the computer.  I use my 5 lives and then, I’m done.  There’s just something satisfying about trying to figure out the game that seems to be part strategy and part luck.

Quote for the Week

I loved this post about being gracious from Rachel at Home Sanctuary this morning and so I’m going to borrow her bible verse for my week.

Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how to respond to each person.  (Colossians 4:6)


What do you have planned for the week ahead?


Wednesday Morning Walk In The Park

I went for a Wednesday morning walk in the park.  I wanted to practice with the camera a bit.  Getting away from the computer was also a goal.  Finally, I wanted to try to embrace winter a bit.

Want to come on my walk?  It will be ’90s style since I accidentally left my cell phone at home.  I hope you won’t mind when I stop to take a photo of whatever catches my eye.

Wednesday Morning Walk At Waterfall Park

Although it wasn’t exactly sunrise, I did enjoy trying out the scene setting on my camera.  I loved the reflection of the sun into the lake.

This little fellow was swimming around near me down by the fishing dock.  It is close to the play area and I think families sometimes (though they aren’t supposed to do it) feed the birds down there.

Lots of Canada Snow Geese hang out in these waters as well, not as many by the fishing dock but lots of “evidence” of their presence left behind.  Also, a special note to the random person who left behind their dog’s poo on the sidewalk.  Shame on you!  Please, be more respectful next time.

These red berries caught my eye.

As did these flowers?  Here’s the waterfall that gives the park its name.   It’s man-made and shut off for the winter so it doesn’t freeze, I guess.  I must have looked a bit touristy with my camera.  A fellow walker (lots of people use this park to walk, jog, etc) told me the park was much prettier when the leaves were green and the waterfall was on.

I like this sign! I saw a few of them as I toured the path around the lake.

Why did the geese cross the road?  To play video games and go bowling, of course! 

A few more ducks hanging out in the water.  The reflections in the water continued to fascinate me.  I tried to get closer to the little dot of a white bird (perhaps the uncooperative gull I saw later) who I watched fishing for a few minutes before taking this photo. I took a lot more photos but this lamp-post is the last one I’m going to share today. Despite the lack of snowy surroundings, this lamp-post made me think of Narnia.   What do you think of when you see it?

A few final thoughts about my morning walk:

First, I’m still cold from it!  Thirty seven degrees is warm for January but still pretty chilly to be casually walking around and taking photos for an hour.  Second, I really enjoyed it and “rediscovered” how much I enjoy simply being outside.  I found a lot of peace in it.

And finally, I have decided I need to make an effort to do it a lot more often and stop waiting for my family to come along with me.  I can manage on my own (and without a cell phone though I’ll probably take one next time since it isn’t 1995 anymore).  I think I will shoot for visiting a new park or trail twice a week.

Do you like to go on walks?  How often a week do you get outside?


Happy Homemaker Monday, Goodbye January!

Can you believe today is the last day of January?  Talk about a whirlwind start to our new year. In keeping with my determination to post a Happy Homemaker Monday each week in 2017, here’s my post.

The Weather

Spring is teasing us this week!  It was 64 degrees when I took my break at work yesterday (reason for my Monday post showing up on a Tuesday) and is supposed to be just slightly cooler today.  Winter returns later in the week when it will only be in the 30s.

On My Reading Pile

I need to return books to the library as well as pick up some new ones.  After finishing Midnight Star by Marie Lu (a good series, definitely better than her Legend trilogy as far character development), the only thing currently on my pile is Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire. 


Probably not a whole lot this week.  Last week I did watch the entire Travelers series on Netflix.  I found it to be a fun and intriguing science fiction series.  We also had a bit of  a Matt Damon movie marathon over the weekend where we watched all the  Jason Bourne movies (Christmas gift) with the exception of the newest one.


The struggle for interesting menus continues.  Balancing out the problem of the picky family is my current quest to clean out our pantry, fridge, and freezer.  I need to get back to checking out all the fun menus over at the Menu Plan Mondays hosted by Laura from I’m An Organizing Junkie.

MONDAY:  We had tacos.  I worked all day and my husband choose this one.

TUESDAY:  Crispy Parmesan Garlic Chicken, Rotini noodles *G has pep band*

WEDNESDAY:   Fish/shrimp (from freezer), baked potatoes *Mom’s Night Out*

THURSDAY:  Chili (from freezer)  *I work 9 to 5*

FRIDAY:  French Toast and Sausage (from freezer) *I work 8 to 4*

To Do List

  1. Go to the grocery store
  2. Call and make hair appointment
  3. Get card/present for husband’s birthday next week
  4. Clean out freezers
  5. Finish Organizing pantry, it’s cleaned out but I need a new system to keep it from reverting to chaos


Nothing at the moment but I really want to get out there and work on taking some photos this week especially since the weather is going to be so nice.

Looking Around The House

Nothing new, it needs cleaning especially the bathrooms.  An item that should probably be on the to-do list up there.

From The Camera

I made a mango pie last week and had some crust left so I cut into hearts and sprinkled with cinnamon sugar to bake.  This pattern was left on my work area: 

Something Fun To Share

I’m drawing a blank on this one.  Uh, it’s apparently national zebra day?  I had no idea.

What I’m Wearing

long-sleeved blue shirt, jeans, and tennis shoes.

Simple Pleasure

The soft purr of our silly little cat.  Of course, if her soft purr puts me back to sleep on a Monday morning, things don’t stay so simple (a glimpse of my yesterday).

Quote for the Week

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.  (Proverbs 4:23)


Did January go by in a whirlwind for you as well?  Don’t forget to hop over and check out all the links for Happy Homemaker Monday hosted by Sandra from Diary of A Stay At Home Mom.

Happy Homemaker Monday, Last Full Week Of January

Yes, you read the title right.  This is the last full week of January.  How did this month go by so fast?  I wonder if the entire year will fly by at this pace.

Since I’m trying to post for Happy Homemaker Monday (hosted by Sandra from Diary of A Stay At Home Mom) every week this year, this morning I find myself battling with my husband’s laptop in my efforts.  I’m still not sure which of us shall win.

My husband is asleep in the bedroom where the beloved desktop lives in my office area.  And since I’ve been told on occasion I type too loud, here I am doing battle with this pesky laptop.

Let’s just move on to the categories of this weekly planning post shall we?

The Weather

We’ve been blessed with another very mild winter again so far this year (even if I was grumbling about having to scrape ice off my windshield this morning) but I would welcome back the sun any time now.  It’s supposed to be warm today and tomorrow (almost 60 then!) before dropping back to the low 40s.  My weather app is showing the sun for a few of those days as well.

On My Reading Pile

I finished both The Year of Living Danishly by Helen Russell (and was quite excited to see she has a new book just out!) as well Out Of Oz by Gregory Maguire (It was a bit of a tough read but yet I wasn’t quite ready for the story to end either).  I’ve begun The Midnight Star by Marie Lu and am so far enjoying it.

On My TV

Not too much although my show, The Flash, does return this week!  I watched The Minions Movie with J on Saturday night and Sing Street (which I really enjoyed) early Sunday afternoon.  My husband watched Reverent but I was as uninterested in that one as he was in Sing Street so I passed.

Menu This Week

I’m still working to break out of my menu planning blahs as well as have us eat a bit healthier.

MONDAY:  Turkey hot dogs, veggies, homemade potato chips

TUESDAY: Spaghetti, salad, garlic toast

WEDNESDAY: Rotisserie chicken, salad

THURSDAY:  Frozen pizza (I work all day so want something easy)

FRIDAY:  Pancake supper fundraiser (delayed from a couple of weeks ago due to the great ice storm that wasn’t), I work so will probably have to miss out

To Do List

  1. Everything still not done from last week (some weeks are just like that aren’t they?)
  2. Clean up the house a bit
  3. Pay bills
  4. Have Coffee with a friend on Tuesday
  5. Work Thursday and Friday
  6. Go To My Book Club meeting on Saturday

What I Am Creating

I shared my finished project in Friday’s post.  I am happy with the way it turned out.

Looking Around The House

Needs a bit of cleaning, the kitchen table especially needs a good clearing off.  I had to say goodbye to my cheerful yellow flowers so I am missing those.

From The Camera

Bit of a blurry phone pic but I looked up and the neighbor’s tree was full of birds including this bright red cardinal.  So pretty against yet another dreary sky.

Something Fun To Share

Chinese New Year is Saturday and it’s the year of the rooster (hey, that’s me!).  We also have a tiger, snake, and monkey in our midst.  What’s your sign?  You can find out at this site.

What I’m Wearing Today

Long-sleeved light green shirt (just noticed it matches the color of our living room walls), jeans, and tennis shoes.

One Of My Simple Pleasures

The quiet solitude of a Monday morning.  Really, of any morning.  I am a bit overdue in experiencing said simple pleasure.

Quote For The Week


My post is a bit late going up today because the lap top computer won the battle.  How has your day been so far?

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