Sunday, December 12, 2010

So, uh, yeah

PCCX went out without so much as a whimper.  Gee, that went well.  Congratulations to those of you who accomplished things.  I did too, a couple, but not near "enough".  Story of my life, great plans, lousy follow-through.

This time of year is both my least and most favorite.  Least because I'm looking back at what didn't get done all year, and most because it's a time for all sorts of planning and whatnot.  Yay, goals.

Speaking of this time of year, does anyone else realize that Winter PCCX is supposed to start in 3 weeks?  I had the thought a while ago that it might be time to shake things up and change the way it goes, but I've had zero ideas on how to do that.  So please, anybody, toss in your thoughts.  Please.  Pretty please?

Sunday, October 24, 2010

My laundry room

I really wanted to have a slightly different post for tonight.  I had truly hoped to have my laundry room FINISHED.  After all, Chris had spent a full afternoon gutting it, and 2 of the kids spent some time picking up anything he missed, so "all" I had to do was the actual cleaning of it all.

I went in there today and swept the hell out of it.  If you happen to think that spiders and their puffy little whatever-they-are are denizens of hell - and I kinda do - then that's a literal statement.  Ceiling, walls, window frames, door frames, floor, behind the washing machine and dryer, under the water heater platform, carvings on the linen dresser, all of it got hit with the broom today.  Took me a full half hour, and that room is hardly the size of a room.

But that was only the foundation of the issue, apparently.  I was rather disappointed when I went to enter the tasks into my POA and found that the only lines I could actually mark off were cleaning the dog bed and blankets and cleaning behind the 2 machines.  I still haven't washed, wiped, or organized anything.  This is why I've not yet spammed y'all with after photos, even as drastically different as it looks already.  I'd hoped to get further today, but tomorrow will have to do.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

A small triumph

I *finally* really tackled something.  And naturally I come to tell y'all about it and I find myself half an hour into a 2 hour image upload maintenance for Blogger and pictures are disabled.  So if you want to see pics you'll have to check my photo gallery (link in sidebar), the last 5 photos.

We have this "desk".  I use the term loosely because it's badly proportioned and arranged and is basically unusable as an actual desk, as in to sit at, even without a computer.  It was A's for quite a while to just store stuff on but then she got a big art desk and didn't need it (or have room for it) anymore.  Since then it's been in the corner of the living room holding some books and some of B's larger school stuff and the board games.

It's been bugging me for a while because in addition to being badly designed it's also not terribly well made.  The bottom shelf, both sides, and the slide out "keyboard tray" (which no one could really use for a keyboard) were all coming apart and it was only a matter of time before the whole thing collapsed.  Nothing was missing or broken, the pegs had just come completely apart, and the tray was off the track.

I got some wood glue - don't know if it'll help anything but it makes me feel better - and forced everything back together on the bottom.  I cleaned it off the best I could, everything but the paint splotches.  It's simply not worth the time or effort to try to get those off and it's not a showpiece or anything so they stay and I'm not fussed about it.  I found a disturbing amount of junk under it and got rid of all of that.  I moved the books to another bookshelf and put what was left on the upper shelves away from E, dusting off as I went.  I wanted to get rid of those guitars (Rock Band and Guitar Hero) altogether but I don't have anywhere else to put them so I did a cursory dusting of them, what I could reach.  I should've mopped or scrubbed or otherwise cleaned the floor while I had the desk out but I was somewhat limited in time and frankly didn't feel like breaking out more tools.  I can get under it now without moving the desk so I can still do the floor later when I do the rest of the room.

So there's my first big push...only 3 1/3 weeks into PCCX.  Yay?

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Name That Kitchen Utensil

I admit that I've been really sucky at the pccx challenge even though I was so excited for it to start.  Now that I'm starting a new job tomorrow, I'll either get back on the horse and start getting stuff done again, or really enjoy my days off and do nothing, we'll see LOL

So since it was kitchen week, I went into my utensil drawer and pulled out 2 ziploc bags of crap that my father purchased from a garage sale.  Why he bought 2 is beyond me since the same items were in both. Needless to say, I tossed one in the trash and kept the other.  Now, I must try to figure out what these utensils are! 

The end of this is flat like a screwdriver. The circles near the handle are not large enough to put your fingers through. I'm at a complete loss.
Clearly a grapefruit utensil, right?

WTH is this?  Plastic; Open circle at one end; Corkscrew like at bottom with a pointed edge AND its hollow through the corkscrew thing. 

I know it shows both, but this image is for the cheese slicer?  Question mark because that's what I think it is, but I'm not really sure LOL
This looks a lot like 2 pics above, except its metal and the corkscrew plastic piece isn't hollow.  Still has the round circle at the top. Anyone know what it is, anyone?

Ummm??? Pouring spout at the top. "Teeth" at the bottom. Name this utensil. Please.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Progress? What's that?

I haven't sunk yet to the feeling of utter failure, but I can see it looming.  With the exception of a major computer clean-out (more than half a million files deleted, among other things) and 2 kitchen drawers, I have done nothing towards PCCX yet.

I can say that I'm getting better at keeping daily and weekly chores going.  My point total for October is doing well towards goal - too well, actually; I'll need to make some adjustments.  As I improve in the picking-up department then I think I can get into actual cleaning.  Hopefully that will happen before I'm out of time. :)

Monday, October 11, 2010

I did it!

I finished PCCX in living room. It looks so nice in this one room. Everything is dusted and organized and clean. Now on to the dining room/entry/front porch.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

What is wrong with me?

You know how "they" are always telling people who are trying to reach a goal or change something that the first step (or one of them) is to visualize themselves doing whatever it is they're trying to do?  I guess for some people who don't have confidence or faith or whatever this would be difficult.  I have no problem with that.  I can - and frequently do - picture myself with great clarity in the act of really getting down and dirty as it were, cleaning everything in sight.  It seems so easy, at least one bit at a time it is.  And yet I can't seem to get up and actually do it.  What's wrong with me?

I also really need to get over my aversion to using water to clean things.  I know, weird.  I tend to go out of my way to clean things with wipes or sprays or dusters or dry cloths instead of a good, old-fashioned bucket o' water and rags or sponges.  I think it has something to do with the thought of getting something clean only to have to deal with the puddles or drips or spills or whatever.  Dumb.

Monday, October 4, 2010

I've been called out....

Ok so I haven't posted to the blog yet this PCCX, but there was no reason to call me out. I've been working on keeping up with the house work, homeschooling my son in preschool and trying to finish up my college classes.

I've done some PCCX, I moved the furniture and detail vacuumed the carpet, I need to shampoo it but have to borrow my friend's carpet cleaner first. I washed the living room window and cleaned the tracks. I polished all the tables and the entertainment center, including the electronics. I haven't done any of the holiday tasks except printing out lists. I still need to clean the furniture and organize my books and DVDs. Then the living room will be done. Then it's on to the dining room and front porch.

No pics this time around, I don't feel like taking them. Maybe I'll do afters when its all done.

A slow start

Here's a shocker: I haven't really started yet.  That's right, you heard me.  7 days of PCCX behind us, and I've cleaned nothing.  I did - finally - get my general set of before pictures done last night.  If you go look let me just say that no rumbles were done in advance of those shots (as if that weren't patently obvious), so on a day when rumbles are done it doesn't look quite that bad.  The really surprising bit is that B's room seems to be the cleanest one in the house.  Or at least the most picked-up room.  I assure you, it still needs to be sandblasted and scoured.

In better news, I have done all but one of week one's holiday tasks.  Yay me!

One way or another this place will look better than those pictures by Thanksgiving.  It may require a flamethrower or a bulldozer, but it will be better.

Anyone else have progress to report? *coughcelestecough*

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Easy Work in the Living Room

How often do you find yourself psyching yourself out?  You know, deciding a job is too big/difficult, so why bother even starting?  Remember, even 15 minutes of PCCX is 75 minutes for Zone Work + You get points for the PCCX job you did.  Even if you're not doing points, 15 minutes a day.  That's it.  That's all you have to do.  Wipe down a light switch or a door.  Polish a table.  Clean off a shelf.  These are all small jobs, but if you do one a day, it adds up.  That's why we're here.  I'm discovering that even the smallest of jobs is now making me smile when I walk by because it's done.

So, what did I do yesterday for day 2?  Well, I'm quite limited in my mobility because of the knee surgery on Monday, but I did manage to clean off and polish an end table, clean and polish the coffee table, wipe down all of the coasters, clean out one of the baskets under the coffee table (throwing out 3 magazines, 2 remotes, 1 coaster and something else I can't remember LOL).  I also wiped down one of the lamps and had a helluva time dusting the lampshade because it had so much cat hair on it (oops, didn't take points for that, will add to today's).  So it wasn't a lot of work.  It took me about 30 minutes to do it.  But the living room looked a LOT better, even if only in my eyes! 

Here's a few pics I took of the before/after:

One more day down, let's see what else can be accomplished...

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Reader poll

For curiosity's sake, what room are you starting with?  Do you move along as it's written (corresponding with Flylady's monthly plan)?  Do you start with the worst room and move toward the easiest, or vice versa?  Do you mix things up and go wherever you feel like on any given day?  Or maybe you lump all similar jobs together for the whole house, doing all the floors at the same time, for example.  Let us know how you work - or plan to work, if this is your first time around - and why.

Getting the ball rolling

I've done all the administrative voodoo - ok, most of it - and I'm halfway through preparing my own files.  I still have to take, edit, upload, and link a full set of pictures (my last "befores" are from, I think, 2008?) before I even get started.

I hope some of you have been a little more on-track than I have in starting this challenge.   My dh is currently out of work and has been informed that he will be assisting this time around.  I hope (plan) to get my pictures done tomorrow so we can start working on the living room.  I've decided to work more or less in order as written this time.  You know me, every round I have to change something and it never works...but I keep trying. :)

I just realized, this is our 20th PCCX!  Um, 20th time's the charm?

PCCX: Day One for Kim

This was the day of my knee arthroscopy so I accomplished nothing. But we all knew that was going to happen, so I'm not going to beat myself up for it (okay, maybe just a little because I feel like I'm behind already).

I'm not sure how I'm going to get pictures done as it'd be too difficult at the moment with me wobbling around with a cane.  So maybe in the next couple of days I'll be able to get around to it.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Living Room Floor Part 4

Pics only as I'm too tired to be witty :p

Note: The Resolve after steam cleaning did in fact lighten the stain a bit more :D

I couldn't just move the furniture back when I noticed what the wood looked like...

Once I put everything back into its place, my Dad said "Should we start taking bets on how long it will take me to spill something?"

I said "Sorry, but that will be your death date/time."

He laughed.

I wasn't joking...

Call Me Lazy...

It's okay. You can call me lazy. 

I've been taking this entire PCCX session to steam clean the living room. 

I'm still not done...

Last week I did another section. Kind of.  You see, what I actually did was pull out the couch and detail vacuum the area.  I didn't steam clean it.  I could have.  But I just wasn't feelin it after all of the vacuuming. 

First off in my defense, I think I vacuumed enough cat hair to create another cat.  Clearly there's visible stains there so I should have steam vac'd it.  Maybe next PCCX.  I still have actual floor that people can SEE that needs to be done instead.

Never Look Up!!!

I made a mistake...

I was sitting at the kitchen table, and I looked up.

Like I said. Never look up.

I couldn't very well just sit there and continue to eat my meals knowing what was directly overhead.  So, I filled the dishpan with soapy water, took apart the fixture and began the soakfest.  Then I grabbed some Fantastik and papertowels and went to work.

This is definitely one of those hated jobs that nobody wants to do.  In reality, it took me less than 30 minutes, with the majority of the work going into removal and put back of the bulbs (Not really the bulbs, but the light fixture but I didn't want to say light fixture because that refers to the entire thing which isn't what I did but but light covers....THAT's the word I was looking for....Light Covers!!!)  Whatever. 

Pretty!!!!  Now I look up and smile :D

Wall Challenge

Soooooo...Amanda gave out the wall washing challenge last week and I DID do it last week.  I even took the pics last week.  I just didn't get around to posting til now LOL

Of course, that was just one side of the stairway.  So, the next day I HAD to wash the other side. 

Friday, July 30, 2010

Under the Sink

I hate the area under my kitchen sink. It's one of those most dreaded areas to clean. I organized it once since we moved here 2 years ago. A combination of my household cleaners and my father's Depression era thinking of "If it's on sale really cheap than I should buy it now because I might need more in 10 years and not be able to afford it then" has left me with cleaners in 6 different places in the house, stocked to the gills.  Not having household cleaners is not my reason for not doing PCCX. That's for sure.

Last year, we had a leak and my dear husband just threw things back in after he fixed it. Um, thanks? I've just not had the inclination to go digging in there, overrun by cleaners, sponges and the like. But I about lost it the other day. You see, if we're getting low on dish detergent on the counter, and my father doesn't have more sitting right there in the front of the cabinet under the sink, he must go buy more.

Clearly that bottle was not "in his face" because he bought 2 more.     
 So, with my Ipod fully charged and my playlist ready, I went in....

Yep, that big black spot is mold. Why? Remember I mentioned the water leak? Apparently my husband didn't bother to wipe it down. *Sigh*  Gee....I wonder if I have any cleaners to handle that...

Now, you may think I'm exaggerating, but I'm not.  Under the sink included:
  • A furniture cleaning set that we got when we purchased our couch 7 years ago. It's never been used. I tried throwing it out 2 years ago but my husband insisted we might need it someday.  
  • 3 boxes of Mr Clean Magic Erasers
  • Vacuum bags (slightly water damaged)
  • 2 different LCD cleaners & a bottle of a distilled water mixture for cleaning LCD's
  • Can of air
  • Furniture Polish and polish wipes
  • Resolve, Oxy Clean floor cleaner and a Steam Vac Cleaner
  • 4 plastics bags of various sponges (3 were opened).  After removing the plastic bags, I ended up with 37 sponges.
  • Bug Spray
  • 2 cans of Lysol disinfectant (which smell really bad, so we don't use it but keep it???)
  • 4 brushes
  • 3 pairs of latex gloves
  • 3 bottles of window cleaners
  • 2 organizing racks
  • Strainer
  • 6 bottles of dish detergent
  • 5 various household cleaners
  • 3 different lime/rust cleaners
  • 3 boxes of steel wool cleaners (My father said we were out and to add to my shopping list, so I did and bought some, but he didn't see I did, so he bought some and we already had some *sigh*)
  •  Murphy's Oil Soap
  • A "garbage can" with more sponges in it....WTF??
  • My coffee can of grease
  • and lastly, 82 of those dish cloths/wipes (we don't use these)
Back to the problem of cleaning out under the sink and that nasty ass mold stain.  I grabbed the Lysol Kitchen cleaner (with bleach), grabbed a pair of latex gloves and one of the disposable dish cloths.  First of all, I hate latex gloves. With a passion. They're a pain in the ass to put on and your hand/arm sweat while using them. But I was NOT touching that mold with my bare hands!!!

Afterwards, I condensed as much as I could and put it all back all neat and organized and stuff. 

After 3 hours, I was DONE!



my father entered the room and sat down.

He asked me about the black spot he saw under the sink while it was empty.

I explained it was mold from the water leak...

He then asked...

Did you use bleach?

*insert sigh of disgust here*

Yes Dad.

"Oh" he says..."I wasn't sure if you knew"

My brain went into overload...
Seriously?!?  Are you friggin kidding me?!?!?  I'm 40 years old!!!  *Insert swear words here* Old man...*insert more swear words*  Raised a family of three boys *insert more swear words* Only living here to help you out *insert more swear words* I need alcohol *insert more swear words*

My reply...

Yes Dad, I knew.

Saturday, July 24, 2010


Yeah, I suck.

Daily PCCX posts.  Right. As if.

I'm in a funk that I just can't seem to get out of.  No matter how many times I say "I'll start tomorrow," tomorrow never happens.  I need to get back into a daily routine. I'll start tomorrow.

But I did do something today.  I organized my pantry. Exciting stuff, huh?  Yeah, it wasn't really that difficult to be honest.  In fact, it probably took longer to take the pictures and edit them.  Still, its one job down.  So, without further adieu, he are my before and afters:

Top 2 Shelves Before
Top 2 Shelves After
Bottom 2 Shelves Before  
Bottom 2 Shelves After

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Days 10-13 - um, not so much

I'll admit it. I've been playing pretty much all week. Well, not *always* playing. I have fixed meals (except for tonight), I've done dishes, a couple loads of laundry, I hauled trash yesterday, but real cleaning? Yeah, not so much. And ack, this coming week? More errands than I can shake a stick at. It's really going to suck, honestly, and I'm not looking forward to it. Such is life with one car - and one that is barely running at that.

I am shopping Sunday but may be able to do some work in the afternoon if I'm not totally wiped. There will be next to no cleaning done Monday. Tuesday has potential. Wednesday is unlikely to see any work done. Thursday, hahahahaha. Ye-ah, no. Friday's looking pretty good, unless I'm recovering from Thursday still. It will take a very concerted effort on my part to get anything done toward PCCX before the end of the third (!) week. Think I'll make it?

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Cramming lots in early

The insurance adjuster is due between 11 and 12 today. I don't know where he's coming from or from how far out he will call to let me know he's on his way, but he did say he'd make that call so I'm hoping I have half an hour or so.

While the kids got a ton of work done yesterday, there is still much more that needs doing before he gets here. I've rallied the troops and gotten all the "public" areas swept and picked up and dishes going. I would still like to clear and clean the kitchen counters and mop as much of the floor as possible.

None of this can be done without breaks however, so here I am to introduce zones 2-8, also known as the rest of my kitchen.

Ok, there's a lot of pictures and I don't know how to put a slide show in a Blogger post, so if you want to see pictures try this gallery.

The freezer and area in front of it is zone 2. The kitchen breakfront (as opposed to the dining room breakfront, coming later) and the area in front of it are zone 3. The refrigerator and in front of it is zone 4, ditto the stove in zone 5. Zone 6 is the pantry and can shelf and, yes, the floor in front of and immediately beside them. Zone 7 is the right side counter, cabinets, and floor to the dining room, and zone 8 is the left side counter, cabinets, and floor to the dining room.

There's the lousy linoleum throughout, including a large area of deep gouges in zones 2 and 3 where previous owners had apparently had a table and chairs, pieces of it coming up at the edge of the dining room, back door, and in front of the dishwasher, and bumps in zone 8 where there is a lot of water damage to the wood floor beneath - not related to our current ceiling issues.

Behind the pantry is the cheap paneling continuing from zone 1. Above all the counters is a backsplash of the same cheap laminate as the counters, complete with peeling daisy border. Two more windows: one above the sink and one at the far left of the counter.

The biggest problem in the kitchen, aside from general mayhem and horrible decorating, is bugs. All the rain has driven bugs inside and I haven't yet gotten a handle on it. So far it's (mostly) confined to the kitchen and I'm determined to keep it there. Well, get it gone really, but before that keep it from spreading.

So that's the rest of the kitchen and the before pictures, and some significant work is getting done today. Signing off until the afters...

Day 9 - cleaning without lifting a finger

Something got into my kids today; I don't know what it was. In exchange for erasing some allowance debt and some extra quarters, all three of my kids lit into cleaning today. Without my ever getting up:
  • "The pit" was completely picked up and swept - needs a serious mopping but that's another story.
  • The popcorn machine was more or less cleaned out.
  • The pantry was organized.
  • The sink and toilet were scrubbed.
  • The dishwasher was unloaded twice and loaded once.
  • A load of laundry was done.
  • The fronts of the dishwasher, oven, refrigerator, and freezer were scrubbed.
  • The German shepherd got a bath.
  • One of Mom's boxes was emptied.
This was all on top of their usual daily chores, which between them include picking up and sweeping all kids' bedrooms, the bathroom, and the living room.

Who are these kids, and where have mine gone?

Day 8 - good intentions

I started Monday off pretty well really. I dove into PCCX with my silly diagram and started on one end of my kitchen. But I didn't get back to it after the first 45 minutes I spent on the buffet. I think I spent the majority of the afternoon/evening playing on the Wii. Boy, I'm just doing great here, aren't I?

As it turns out, as nice as it was to start at #1, I should have started at the other end of the kitchen, because I spoke to the insurance company over the weekend and we should have an insurance adjuster coming to look at the hole in the ceiling. That end of the kitchen is what I call "the pit".

Have I mentioned the hole before? I don't remember if I have and I'm too lazy and it's too late to go looking. There's a leak in the roof. Don't know where or how; Chris has been up there on the roof and didn't see anything. Of course, he doesn't see the mustard that's on the shelf 6 inches from his nose. Anyway, leaky roof begets hole in ceiling, hole in ceiling begets leaking kitchen, rain begets larger hole, more rain begets ever growing holes and cracks, and unseasonable storms beget ceiling crashing down in the middle of the night. That was Friday night I think. Anyway, we're going to see if there will be any help in getting it fixed. I'm of two minds about that, because we don't have the deductible but at the same time a real fix is better than a temporary fix. We'll see.