Finished Product

I did finish my cross-stitch on Monday, here is the result :) I'm going to look for a frame next week at Ikea and hang it by the front door so people see it when they leave. It's a little blurry, but you get the idea.

I started the Dali as well. It's BIG!


I got organized!


All clean, minus my laptop (my hubby was using it to play text twist when I took the photos :)

One of my main issues with my office area was that I needed it to have separate "areas" to keep my various tasks organized but not mixed. I took this wooden drawer unit off my desk, and put it underneath, and it now houses my church work.
These hanging "files" are where my hubby will put anything that is mine, instead of putting it on my desk. That way hopefully I can deal with it and put it where it belongs. These aren't huge, so it will keep me from letting too much pile up.

This drawer unit now houses the extra scrapbook supplies that aren't in the front closet. Since it's on wheels, I could even take it out to the living room if I needed to.
I moved these dividers from the shelf on the side of my desk onto my bookcase, where they are more contained and handy. Each one is for a different are (church, personal, household, support-raising) and I use plastic sleeves and envelopes to organize things within the divider.
I cleared off most of the decorative stuff, but purchased this bowl from Kelly so I could still keep my sand and rocks on my desk :)Other than the above bowl, I limited decorative/nick-knack stuff to the side shelf. I put away loads of nick-nack stuff, Unfortunately, my garbage also goes on the top of the shelf because it keeps the hound from getting into it. Beagles!
1. What was the hardest part of the challenge for you and were you able to overcome it?

I think the hardest part was to look at the "big picture" in terms of how to use my space (how to divide it into manageable but usable spaces)

2. Tell us what kind of changes/habits you have put into place in order for your area/room to maintain its new order?

I've changed my approach from trying to use everything I have to help me organize to only using what I really need. I put away containers I wasn't really using but had on/in my desk just because I had them. They are stored in an easily accessible drawer, so if I need a container for something, they are easy to get to. And as I said before, I cut WAAAAAAAY down on nick-nacks. I stored them in the closet so that I can rotate them if I want to (many of the things are gifts from kids etc.) but no longer feel like I have to display EVERYTHING.

3. What did you do with the "stuff" you were able to purge out of your newly organized space?

In addition to what I mentioned above, I spent a lot of time purging and putting things back where they belong. I now have a designated spot for more things (like my microphone headset and web-cam or all my computer installation discs etc.) I recycled, filed and plain just got rid of what I didn't need and knew I wouldn't need in the future.

4. What was the biggest lesson you learned from this experience?

I think the biggest thing I learned was that tackling a project like this was much easier to deal with in smaller chunks. I only "required" myself to work on it 20 minutes at at a time, but I usually ended up working longer, knowing I had my own permission to quit after 20 minutes. Of course my office area looked worse for quite awhile because I had stuff spread all over the floor etc. In previous fits of organization I would make a bigger mess, get frustrated and sick of it after a couple of hours and then end of throwing everything back the way it was or worse. By giving myself permission to leave the mess longer, it actually helped me be more clear about what I wanted.

5. Now that you have completed the PROCESS, do you think having and keeping your space organized will make a difference in your life?

I think I will end up using my space more. My husband shares the office with me, and he has complained that I have my laptop out in the living room instead of working at my desk (yes, he wants to keep an eye on me :) ) My current scrapbooking buddy is moving away this summer, so I will probably be doing more solo scrapping, and now my desk is wide open for me to do that. Plus I just like the way it looks much better!


A beautiful day in the neighborhood

It's a sunny but chilly day here in Madrid. It's a long weekend (the kids are off through Wednesday), and we are enjoying the break.

Troy and the kids are making peanut butter cookies, which involves lots of instructions like "Get all the metal bowls out of the cabinet." I made a special peanut butter run to the oriental alimentacion (small grocery store) downtown yesterday to stock up and had the usual conversation with the proprietor about how much I was buying. You can get PB here quite a few places, but it's expensive, so it's worth the special trip to get it at a reasonable price, especially considering how much Meaghan loves it.

While I was out, I picked up some cross-stitch floss for my next project!!!
Gathering supplies for this is akin to new notebooks and pens for me, I love it :) I recently got my hands on a pattern for this print, which I think will look really great in our bedroom against the red wall. I told myself that doing this could be my reward for completing my office organization.

However, since I have too many half-finished cross-stitch projects as it is, I made myself finish one of them before I am allowed to start on this one. The silly thing is that I usually run out of steam on projects when they are almost done, so it doesn't take that much time or energy to finish them.

So anyway, I hope by the end of the day today I can post a photo of my completed project :) Although I have put my new floss on bobbins
and my project box is neatly waiting, I will not start on the Dali until my other one is finished!

PS It's May! So you know what that means! :)


A prayer for the church in Turkey

A couple of weeks ago, there was an article on CNN about killings in Turkey of several Christian men. I read it but did not really grasp the depth of it, or the meaning.

Yesterday, we got a forwarded email written by a pastor in Turkey, telling the full story of these martyred men who died for Jesus. It was disturbing and graphic and sobering.

It made me ashamed about the things I fret about, the things that stress me. How blessed and easy my life is.

I am not sure if the email should be posted, but if you are interested, email me and I'll send it to you.

In the meantime, today I am saying a prayer for our brothers and sisters who must worship in secret, who give their lives for Jesus.

May God protect them and give them mercy.