Pretty Organizers Defining Moment

Melissa at The Inspired Room is a Saint... a dear friend of mine (and many other women) and a mentor.  She issues a challenge every Friday to link up with posts that define how we are living a Beautiful Life.  This week I thought I'd share with you how I came to have a Pretty Organized Palace... and why I'm an expert in this area... well, almost an expert... okay, I'm more of an enthusiast.

This is me.... at 33.  Yes... mid-thirties and most of the hair you see is helped along with a bottle of dye every month (or I'd look like Barbra Bush!)  I've accomplished a lot at thirty three... namely a marriage of almost 14 years and 6 children- all after marriage of course!  I've been a PTO President, co-founded a community group to help oust our Superintendent (it worked) and build community awareness of school district issues. I've been active in leadership positions in my church and am involved weekly with the Scouting program.  I'm a trained classical vocalist and have enjoyed singing the National Anthem in Qualcom stadium and doing a few musicals here and there.  I stay at home and raise my six children and this year have done it with a hubby working and going to school full-time (not a fate I'd wish on any mother.... It's been crazy)  

I've had many people ask me questions like: "How do you do all of this?  How do you manage?  6 Kids, Are they all yours?  I couldn't do it.  6 children?!?!?!  I don't know how you get all of these things done."   Well, the answer is simple.  I'm pretty organized.  I did not say organized.  I'm not a fanatic.  The laundry piles up on the couch more often than I'd like.  I'm just pretty organized in the most important areas.... "my priorities are organized my closet is not."

Some days my house looks like this...  Life is lived in this Palace to the fullest and with life comes messes... daily... hourly...  The trick is to learn how to manage life, and to be an efficient  homemaker-  Not OCD (though I do love ocd homemakers... they have a gift!)... because with 6 kids trying to enjoy life... I would be miserable... and I REFUSE TO BE MISERABLE!!
At 25 I had 3 children under the age of 4.  I was not efficient.  I was stretched thin and in many ways felt I was failing.  I looked for books on how to organize, how to clean, how to manage, how to be a mother... I thirsted for knowledge.  I found this book (really I should be getting royalties on this book because I've sold plenty over the years!)
This is a homemakers guide book.  It doesn't talk about how to fluff your pillows, or change bed sheets, or how to organize socks.  It's the guide book on how to be a homemaker.  How to make time for the things that are important to you in life.  Reading this book was the defining moment of my homemaking life... MY LIFE.  

Now, I am a guru, a semi-expert.  I can handle 6 kids, decorate a house, churn out the laundry of 8 like nobody's busines... and I wish that it were someone elses business because truthfully, I HATE IT.  I cook for my family, I serve on community boards, help with elections, help with scouting, because I put the most important priorities in my life first: God, my husband, my children, my church service, my home, my schools, my community...

Being Pretty Organized just means that your priorities are in order.  I follow that motto every day... my closets will move up the priority ladder someday.  Maybe after my last boy gets his Eagle Scout or when my last daugher graduates from High School.  

I invite you to join me often at my Palace.  I hope my blog will be an inspiration to women all over...  It shares my quest for beautifying my home, and I hope to share my passion for bringing beauty and efficiency into the home on a budget.  Mostly I hope it shares my enthusiasm for being a mother and a homemaker.  I LOVE what I do.  Not every duty.  Not the puke days.  But on the whole... I could not find joy in doing anything else.

I'd love to hear your concerns as mothers/homemakers and address some of them here on this blog.  I also would love to meet you great ladies!  I hope to help lend a hand to mothers and homemakers just starting out who feel overwhelmed... pleeeease feel free to contact me via email or comments if you have questions!!!  My goal this year is to share the way I find beauty in my life... and how I run my "Pretty" Organized Palace.

Pretty Organizer


The Nester said...

Great post!

Jenna said...

I love the Bonnie McCullough book as well. I read & reread (& reread) this book many times & many of the principles have become ingrained. It's probably just about time to read it again. I only have 3 children but many of my friends have many more. I have learned that they don't all come at the same time so adjustments are made along the way in expectations & workload & it just works out. I enjoy reading your blog.

Teresa said...

How fun six children! As a Mother of five- 3 married- two at college- I too realized early that if I was to keep my sanity I needed to be organized- It was how I survived- thanks for a great post enjoyed reading it-
Happy day

Lisette said...

gosh..i'm 25 and don't know what i'd do if had 3 kids right now. I give you credi for what you do - and how you run a tight ship - you are inspiring!

Miss Sandy said...

I had a similar experience as you in finding a great book, More Hours In My Day by Emelie Barnes, that started off my success in setting priorities and learning organizational skills along the way. I'll have to check out Bonnie's book, thanks for the tip! I wish your great success in helping other women by sharing your experience and knowledge.

Wendy @ The Shabby Nest said...

You are an inspiration! This is an awesome post!

Jen said...

This post really resonated with me. For a long while, I have been feeling a need for serious change in the way I manage(or don't) my home.

I am at a turning point. I can feel it. I started in my kitchen. With meal planning, using up leftovers and other food before it goes bad, and cooking every night. It is encouraging to make steps in the right direction.

I love to decorate, and I'm pretty good at it too, but what is the point, when there is too much junk sitting around to notice the decor.

I've been reading your blog for a while and look forward to picking up a copy of the book you recommended. I feel like I need a homemaking 'coach'. I wish it came naturally to everyone, but I know it doesn't. I am committed to changing my ways. Thanks for the encouragement.

SoBella Creations said...

My biggest chore is the laundry. I can get it washed/dried. But, it can sit in a basket for days before I decide to fold and put away. I need a better system than what I have.

Melissa @ The Inspired Room said...

What a great post!! You need to make this your "about page" because you explained it all so well! I too have had books change my life and shape my thinking! You are doing so well managing all that you do and I look forward to learning your secrets! I've never read that book, it sounds intriguing!

PS. Thanks for the kind words, you are too sweet.

Marci said...

Hi! I just ordered the book you talked about...and also the "More hours in my day" booked that a fellow commentor posted. I need a change! I am 34, going to school, working 25-30 hour per week, and have 2 kids. I need help with it all and I am hoping these books will give me some ideas! Thanks!

Jen - Balancing beauty and bedlam said...

Ok - you've sold two books just from this post..yep, royalties. :)
This was an awesome post...I agree with Melissa...link it to an about me page. I need to work on one as well, but it certainly won't have the organizational part down...that's why I need you. :)
the bad thing is I know WHAT to do..I just don't get around to doing it all. I am coming to my down months during the summer and have high hopes.

Debbie said...

I'm so glad you shared your organizational "testimony". And I'm glad you're using your knowledge to help others. You are wise beyond your years (and I can say that since I could be your MOTHER!)

Look forward to participating in your kid's day tomorrow :)

Michelle said...

do you see me clapping, I am impressed!

Meredith said...

I think I need this book - I will be ordering from Amazon.com shortly!! Thanks so much for sharing. I know it is all about priorities and putting first things first!

Kendra said...

It seems like you and I have a bit in common. We are both 33, and singers. Only I have half as many children as you have and am probably at least twice as overwhelmed! I guess I should get that book.

I love your towel idea!

Kimba said...

This is a fantastic post! You've sold another copy of that book!


melissa said...

Wow~you sound like an amazing woman! I love your take on life. I'll have to check that book out~I have one that I love that my mom gave me when I had my first baby that gave me my roots of making a home as well. It's nice to meet you~you've got a great blog here!

Dayna said...

I just found your blog and I LOVE it! I would love to be able to subscribe to it so I can see your newest posts, however I don't use the "feeds". Can I subscribe via email? Would you please let me know?

Thank you so much!



cindy said...

I completely admire you, for being a stay at home mother and for loving it. Nobody loves everything about keeping a home, but understanding the importance of it is of utmost importance!! And I applaud YOU!!! Hugs, ~cindy s~

Ashley said...

The description of your life at 25 is exactly where I am in my life right now...minus one child. I have been completely overwhelmed not only with our lives but with my search for helpful resources. There are so many wonderful blogging mom's with amazing ideas! Thank you for sharing your story and giving me hope! I will also be ordering the Bonnie McCullough book!

Anonymous said...

Love what you did to your kitchen!
Are the cabinets oak? The before cabinets looked oak.
My daughter just bought a new house and we are pondering the idea of painting the oak cabinets white. However, we are worried about the "grain" of the oak bleeding or showing through.
Did you do anything special to prevent that?
Just found it.

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