Friday, March 29, 2013

3 in 30 - Update #2, 3, and 4

The goals that I have for the 3 in 30 challenge for March include:

1. Do several homeschool field trips and activities. 

In mid-March we went to a bluebird house-building workshop at one of the local state parks.

Sophia making a Peterson bluebird house.

There was a 45-minute presentation with slide show about blue birds followed by about 45 minutes of building a bluebird house.

A volunteer helping Olivia build her bluebird house.

We volunteered at the nursing home on the Friday before St. Patrick's Day and made Shamrock Shakes for the seniors and their family members.

Sophia transferring the shakes to individual cups 
for the seniors and their families.

About 30 people participated in the event.

Olivia adding crushed chocolate 
to the top of the shakes.

We enjoyed making and serving the shakes; and doing the special event for the seniors and their families.

The finished shakes before they are served.

We also went to a local co-op and took a class about saving money. We learned about special member discounts, demonstration days, coupons, and free items that the co-op provides to members and visitors. When we went shopping afterwards, the girls each picked out a free piece of fruit since they are 12 years old or younger. Plus we used our membership discount and bag discount.

Today we are volunteering at the nursing home again. Sophia is going to play the harp for about 45 minutes while Olivia and I serve the residents angel food cake with strawberries and a beverage.

In the evening, we are going to a Seder meal at church. We volunteered to do the shopping for the event and did that on Tuesday afternoon and Wednesday morning. We're looking forward to seeing how the meal and potluck come together.

2. Finish 30 Days of Lists. I started this challenge in September and did about 15 days worth of lists. This month, I would like to complete the remaining 15 days.

I did not work on this project at all this month. Although I wanted to complete it, it wasn't a top priority given other activities that needed my attention this month.

3. Do one cleaning/de-cluttering project each week.

I had four areas that I wanted to concentrate on during March. These are some of the last areas that I need to do in the entire house. (During 2012 and early 2013, I've been focused on organizing, de-cluttering, and simplifying the home. It's been a long-term project, with each month having small goals to get to the final result.)

During March, I worked on three areas of the home:

=> the fabric bins in my office - which I wrote about in the first update of the month.

=> the linen/towel/medicine closet. This was a multi-hour project, yet the result was worth the time investment.

Before (top two pictures and picture below): 
This is what happens to a closet when you neglect it for a long time.

It is much easier to find things now, and only the items that we will use are in the closet.

After pictures - What a relief to have this project done!

=> a section of my office that had lots of items that needed to be put away.

Before - A section of my office that I needed to go through.

The remaining bin and decorative box hold photographs while the other box has files that don't fit into the file cabinets I have now. At some point, I need to go through my file cabinets and recycle the items that I don't need any longer. That will free up space to file the items in this box.

After - A lot more free space in my office
once I put away, recycled, or donated items.

Even leaving these few items in place in my office, I feel like there is now significantly more floor space and a less cluttered look. It feels good to get this done.

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