In the last seven days, I have done the following "extras" around the house (my allergies notwithstanding):
- Cleaned out and reorganized all kitchen cabinets. This is when my allergies started acting up, and while they are better this week, I have not stopped blowing my nose and rubbing my eyes.
- Replaced a toilet. The base of the old one had been broken ever since we moved into this house (a chunk of the porcelain was missing in the back where it sat on the floor). It was hard to clean, and once I cut myself really bad on the jagged edge. Because of the hole, the drain pipe was slightly exposed to the open air (rather than the air being blocked by the water in the toilet), and with the temperatures rising, it started to smell in the bathroom. I thought it was just little boys with poor aim, but lo and behold, the smell has been gone ever since I replaced the toilet.
- Tore up the carpet and baseboards in one bedroom, installed a dividing wall, and painted the whole room. Installing new flooring (laminate) this week in hopes that it will make my allergies better. This room so far has been the kids' playroom, but after the floors are in it will become our bedroom, and Solomon (who currently shares a bedroom with his other two brothers) will move into what was our bedroom up until then (after I replace the carpet with hard floors in there, too). I swept up insane amounts of dirt and dust that had collected under the carpet pad. Carpets in Arizona are a horrible choice for people with allergies. I had to wear a dust mask while doing it, and it was still very bothersome.
(There is a little bit of paint missing along the top of the ceiling on the right. I need to get my husband's ladder from his office to finish it. Also, you can still see the blue painter's tape in this picture, which I have since removed.)
- Cleaned out and reorganized one bedroom closet. I think my closet is the only one in the house that never gets disorganized.
- Canned 10 half-pints of raspberry jam. I wasn't planning on making more jam, but the organic raspberries were on sale at Sam's Club. Total cost for all these jars was about $14.
- Canned 27 lbs of peaches. After we ate a lot of the peaches fresh, we still had enough to fill 8 quart jars. I think it will be wonderful to have later in the year when there are no fresh peaches to be had - at least not any that are sweet and juicy.
My husband was gone for most of this last week, so I usually worked at night after the kids were all in bed. Why then is it that when I go to bed at night, I still feel like I didn't get anything or not enough done? I think most moms feel the same way. It helps to sit down and reflect on how much we did get done, rather than think about all the things that went undone (like laundry, mopping, yard work, and an endless list of other chores).
Next are pictures of my wonderful little sidekick and kitchen assistant, Becky. Can you tell she really liked the raspberry jelly? She already looks very much like John, and so much the more because she was wearing his old hand-me-down pajamas.
I have also been making an effort to take the kids on a special outing or field trip every single day during summer break, and since the beginning of June, there have only been a couple of days that we didn't do anything. More on that (and lots of photos) in another post I have been working on.