Monday, November 10, 2008

Making Your Home A Haven: Tidy

Good morning, ladies!

A very warm welcome to everyone who is new here ~ so glad you could join us for Making Your Home a Haven week!

Before we begin, would you please join me in prayer for our week together?
Dear Lord,

I come before You earnestly seeking Your help for creating my home to be a haven this week. This is always my desire, but I am setting aside this entire week to be focused on home and regaining order.

I know that I cannot do this without You and that I need Your direction in every step I take. Lord, I desire, above all - to please You this week in our home. I ask You to guide my heart through Your Word, through time spent working on my home and enjoying those who I share my home with.

I pray for all those who are joining in this endeavor ~ for Your guidance and blessing over each home participating. Please give us Your wisdom in making good and wise choices for our homes this week. Enable us to say "no" to the things that will hinder us this week and keep us on the straight path following You.

I acknowledge before You and all others participating that I need help in this area, Lord and I am asking You to provide what I need.

Thank You for caring about our homes and providing so generously for our homes. May You be glorified in and through them.

In Jesus' Name,
Amen

Are you ready to get started? I know that I am - I have kept our entire week clear on the calendar in anticipation of this week!

I know that the most important thing we can do for our homes is begin our day with Our Father. Will you join me in setting aside some time to be with Him? Read His Word, fellowship with Him, what is one thought I can bring from this time to meditate on throughout the day? I love Crystal's suggestion of fixing a yummy drink (hot or cold) and sitting down for this time of refreshment. She also encourages us to ask God to bless our day and to love through us. I know that I want this for my home. What was the thought you will carry with you throughout today ~ please share!

It works best for me to plan my day the night before, but if it works better for you to do it in the morning - go ahead and make a plan for today. I'd like to pray over my list each morning this week as well asking for God's help and strength to complete what He wants me to complete.

Today, I'm going to focus on tidying my home. I can't clean it or even take good care of it when there is lots of clutter. And, the clutter fills up and discourages my heart and mind as well. If you'd like ~ tackle some areas of clutter in your home today or pick a different area of your home that needs attention. What is on your list today?

Before we begin our day, lets also think ahead to dinner. Making our homes a place of haven includes providing and preparing a meal that says we care about those around our table. What are you serving for dinner tonight?

Here's my plan for today:

Up and dressed; sitting at the kitchen table by 7am for Quiet Time
Littles up; fed; dressed
Empty dishdrainer of clean dishes
Clear top of dryer
Clear kitchen counters
Clear clutter out of car (let girls play in car)
Clear my nightstand and big pile by my bed!
Walk through each room and do a quick pick-up
Sprinkle homeschool activities and fun throughout the cleaning!
Dinner: Applesauce pancakes; bacon

I would love to hear what you are planning for the day. If you are able or interested - please take before and after pictures and tell us about your day! I'll be posting my update later today on how our day went. Please add your link (directly to your post, please) or comment so we can visit and encourage one another. Let's also be diligent in praying for one another during this week. I look forward to hearing from you!

Note: As we look toward the end of the week, I'm going to be focusing on using my haven to reach out to others. Be thinking about how you can reach out to someone around you either by taking something to them or inviting them into your home. Let's even make an effort to do it this week - as part of our challenge!

52 comments:

Katy said...

This sounds fantastic Monica! I feel like I am doing this process daily..LOL. I don't know that I will actually officially join in...but I will follow your posts and truly look forward to hearing how it goes for you!!! :)

Dawn in Scotland said...

I don't have a blog but I enjoying reading them as it encourages me that there are women in the same season of life as me.

I'm going to be joining in your making your home a haven series, looking forward to this as it was on my heart so greatly encouraged by your blogging.

Love from Scotland x

asnipofgoodness said...

Monica, this is such a terrific idea. I will be out all day with the kiddos, so I can't play along! I love the name, for obvious reasons......teehee!

Catherine said...

Thanks for hosting this, Monica! I've posted some "before" shots of some bench tops and surfaces that I will be working at tomorrow. Can't wait for the results, and to find some creative ways of involving the children in the fun.

Home School Dawn said...

I have a few clutter spots I am going to try to work on today. Thanks for the genuine prayer. What a great way to open a post.
Lord willing, I will have some before and after pix to share later.

Wendi said...

My to do list is up and I will link this afternoon when I have some before and after photos to post. I needed this little push to get my act together... thanks!

Tracy said...

I'm looking forward to your challenge this week! We've been sick since last week (one of those knock-you-off-your-feet bad colds) and have been vegging for days! Today is the first day we are all up with a resonable amount of energy and my house is calling my name!

Michelle said...

I am going to do this as well this week! I told my husband that we were going to take two days off from school today and tomorrow to concentrate on cleaning and tidying... we've only lived in our apartment for four months and it's not looking fresh or new anymore. I'd also like to start getting the seasonal decorations out, but can't do that until our clutter problem is taken care of, and might as well do a deep clean while we're at it. Thank you for doing this this week!

The Happy Housewife said...

Great idea Monica! I am on vacation right now, but I hope to continue my fall cleaning when I return on Wednesday!
Toni

Dana said...

I very much enjoyed Crystal's Making Your Home a Haven series and the challenge last year. I'm hopeful to participate this week, as much as I can with homeschooling three boys who are old enough to need more structure. :)

One point that I would like to bring up is something that was mentioned in a Christian fiction book I read recently. I can't remember which, but the point stuck with me.

When we spend time in prayer over our to-do lists, we need to be extremely conscious that we are not simply presenting God with a pre-approved listing of activities, and asking Him to bless OUR priorities and plans. Having a plan and being organized is good, but we need to be VERY conscious that we are not putting our plans/priorities/lists first, and not leaving room for what God wants us to do today.

I know I can be so focused, personally, that I need to be aware and make sure I am asking God to reveal to me what, on my list, is His priority as opposed to saying "Father, bless this list of things I am going to do today."

Might not be a problem for anyone else, but I thought I would share just in case.

Thanks so much for hosting this!!!!

Brenda@CoffeeTeaBooks said...

I can't participate this week but I'd love to next time.

I'm having to do some serious decluttering today as well as spending some time in the kitchen baking cookies, bread, and putting together a casserole.

My son is usually in college classes on Monday nights but he's skipping a Physics class to get design project finished for tomorrow night.

So, I'm making a HEARTY dinner since he will be home tonight. :)

Melissa said...

I read your blog almost every day and was excited for this week. I will be trying to declutter my utility room and bedroom today. My utility room is where I keep all of our homeschool art supplies and all my scrapbooking stuff. The top of my dryer becomes the catch all for everything that needs to put away in that room, so I have my work cut out for me!! It's kind of fun to think that others are doing the same today. Thanks Monica!

Fatima said...

Our refrigerator died yesterday and we bought a new one at a scratch and dent place (I'd highly recommend it for any appliance purchases...saved us $900.00). Today, I'll have plenty of reason to tidy my kitchen. One of my kitchen cabinets had to come out to make room for our roomier fridge. I'm making Lasagna for supper so I'll probably have the kids (3, ages 5 and under) spend some time building an under the table fort and coloring.

Katie (getrealmom) said...

I've got a long list of things to do today and I am totally motivated thanks to you!

...they call me mommy... said...

Hi Amy here aka "they call me mommy"! ;D I am looking forward to this...my 1st goal for today is to follow the schedule that I know works for us! I have been slacking a bit..2nd is to clean the cubby on my hutch that has been growing into a hideous mess! It has become a place to dump everything...3rd is find a better time for reading my Bible as the mornings aren't working anymore for me...(one kid is up at about 6:00 usually now)
Thanks, Monica!

Sandy said...

I love the last part - looking and reaching out to others. That is the whole mission of my blog! Awesome!
Have a great day Monica!

Barb said...

Thank you so much for hosting this. I had already planned on doing this so it's even more inspirational to know that other ladies are working on the same challenge. I'll be starting the challenge tomorrow on my blog.

Thank you also for your other inspirational posts. I try to check your blog weekly as I develop a more Christian approach to homekeeping and mothering.

Beth Moore said...

I woke up in anticipation of starting this wonderful week! I am so happy you're doing this and really happy to join in the "fun", tee hee.

Mrs. H. said...

Thanks for doing this. I needed the challenge this week!

Kristina said...

Thank you for doing this! I feel like I am drowning in my home!! From clutter to dirty windows to people not wanting to help with anything I just feel overwhelmed. I am having Thanksgiving and I'm starting to panic. Ok, I feel like I am whining! I will pray your prayer every morning and hit the ground running. Thank you, Monica! God bless.

Vintage Mommy said...

Thanks for hosting this! I'm going to try to organize my craft cabinet today.

Lisa said...

I'm working and not home to accomplish much during the day, but I'm taking part - I can use the motivation to make something tidy today!

Michelle said...

Thanks so much for hosting this. I really needed this.

Sarah said...

I have been planning a all-encompassing kitchen clean-up... I need to get better organized. I am getting groceries deals, and have an abundence (Thank You GOD!) of groceries. But now, they aren't organized very well! Thank you for giving the little extra motivation to get it done!

fixedonHim said...

Hi Monica,

I have recently started reading your blog. I have been so blessed & encouraged!

I am excited for this challenge and will be posting before & after pics. The girls and I will still be schooling through this and my Hubby's birthday is Wednesday. So, I will not be able to go as "head on" as I'd liked to. However, any growth in the areas I struggle with are a huge blessing!

Thank you for doing this and for truly sharing your heart. :)

Denise

Sherry said...

Thank you for hosting this! I have been really needing some initiative and accountability. :D

Michele said...

Monica,
I am going to participate. My home has been anything but a haven lately. I have slowly been working on decluttering (I have so much that needs to be gotten rid of). Coming here today was the encouragement I needed to get started. Thank you!
Michele

Michele said...

Monica,
I am going to participate. My home has been anything but a haven lately. I have slowly been working on decluttering (I have so much that needs to be gotten rid of). Coming here today was the encouragement I needed to get started. Thank you!
Michele

SmrfChic said...

I think the main focus of Making my Home a Haven is going to be making the house cleaner, tidier, and less cluttered so that hubby has a haven to come home to at night!

AHighandNobleCalling said...

I have been doing something similar to this on my blog each Monday! But a whole week....gee I bet I will get a lot done then! So glad to join you! Today I am baking up a storm, and the house smells good...it just doesn't look too good at the moment. I sure can make a mess in my kitchen!

The Chambers Family said...

This was a great idea I'm so glad that I get to join in!

Jodie said...

Thanks for the reminder to commit this, along with everything else, to the Lord! I have been discouraged in this area in general, and especially in this first trimester of pregnancy when I feel unable to stay on top of anything! I am grateful for this week of focus, and look forward to seeing the results as the Lord brings them.

Christy@MercyEveryMorning said...

Thanks, Monica! I'm looking forward to getting my house in shape this week and just in time for the holidays, too! :)

Robert said...

I am loving this challenge so far. I have been putting off dealing with the last pile of clutter so hopefully this will motivate me to get rid of it.

Erin

Joy said...

Thanks for hosting! It is always encouraging to see what others are up to- and accountability is always a good motivator!

chrissie grace said...

I'm so happy to join in!
Thanks,
Chrissie Grace

Lisar said...

Well, I have decided to take the plunge and participate...although I am a day late as it is Tuesday already here in Oz...thanks for the challenge Monica....looking forward to having a tidier and more Godly and welcoming home at the end of it and into the future!!
Bless You for being prompted to organise this...

K-Rissa said...

I have actually been praying for a resource to help make my home a haven for my husband, 3 1/2 month old and myself. Thanks!

barbara said...

I wasn't actually planning on doing this, because we have guests coming mid-week and I was planning to do regular cleaning in preparation for them.. But I couldn't stop thinking about your challenge, so the twins and I tackled our very messy and out of control combo school / play room. I should have taken a before picture - WOW! I'm so pleased with the end result!

I didn't stop there. I found myself picking up things as I passed them and putting them away. I even cleaned out my silverware drawer and scoured my kitchen sinks!

Thank you for the challenge and for the prayer. I'm looking forward to what I can accomplish tomorrow.

Rose said...

I just found your blog today and what a fantastic blog it is!

My home and my heart need lots of help, so I thought I'd simply work on making one ROOM a haven this week. I'm hoping, knowing myself, that once I can walk into a room and smile - other rooms will follow.

I'm looking foward to checking in tomorrow! Blessings ~

Amanda said...

Hi Monica!

My name's Amanda, I've never commented on your blog before but I always enjoy reading it and I thought I would join you this week! It's fun when you know others are working toward the same goal as you are. :-)

Alisa said...

Thanks for the inspiration. I do try to do this daily, but sometimes "life" seems to get in the way. I am going to try and focus this week.

Alisa said...

Sorry I messed up and did it twice...please feel free to delete my first link...thanks

noahandlylasmommi said...

My plan is to load and empty the dishwasher, do all the laundry and get it put away, vaccum upstairs and whatever else I have time for. Already got 2 loads washed, one dried. Loaded the dishwasher and will empty after dinner. So far so good.

Organizing Mommy said...

What a neat idea!! God bless you as you encourage others. I 'd loveto take people through a day in my life, but I don't want them to get whiplash! Do you do this every Monday?

Crystal @ The Thrifty Mama said...

We made your applesauce pancakes tonight. They were yummy. I changed it up a little and used buckwheat flour and chunky applesauce. Had to add some milk, but they turned out great! I'm so glad you're doing this. I have gotten so much done today, and can't wait for tomorrow.

Mrs. K said...

Thanks for the invite Monica - so interested to see what the rest of the week holds!

...they call me mommy... said...

Ok...SO I FINALLY GOT A CHANCE TO POST ON MY BLOG! Yea, today went great! Thanks for the "gentle nudge" Monica!

Susannah said...

I haven't read other entries yet. Didn't get an awful lot done, but took pictures of what tidying we did.

Many thanks for hostessing the Challenge!

Jenn said...

sorry I am late, can't quite keep up with you as I've been having activities outside of the house, but I am tagging along!! LOL

rebekahdawn said...

I'm a day late in posting but I am loving this series!
Rebekah

Dawn said...

I have a private blog, so I'm not posting pictures for all to see. That said, I *am* participating...and taking pictures, too! Looking at the before & after photos is so encouraging! My kitchen looks terrific, and doing this has helped to keep me from procrastinating on other housework, too.

Thank you for your willingneses to take over on the Making Your Home A Haven project! :)