Monday, December 31, 2018

Welcome to 34 Weeks of Clean 2019!

Oh. My. Word!  We are back at it.  34 Weeks of Clean starts next week and I would be lying if I said I wasn't a bit nervous about the journey.  We just retired from the military after 26 years, moved into our "forever" home, and are still in shock that we are living in sunny Arizona.  Lots of changes have taken place in our lives and we are still trying to find our new normal. 

BUT, like you- there is always a new project waiting for us.  And let's face it, it is much more fun when you work as a team!  So let's get started!

It is about deep cleaning every space of your house.
It is about decluttering those spaces.
And finally, it is about re-organizing those spaces.

One week at a time.  One space at a time!

You CAN do it!  Our first run of 34 Weeks of Clean (several years ago) proved to be helpful to many.  With a little hard work and a lot of cheering from friends, you too can take your house back!

How did this craziness all begin?

34 Weeks was a project born out of the need to keep busy during my husband's year long deployment, but turned into a passion I did not even know I had.  Yes, I have always loved lists and schedules and calendars and been a little type-A about my house, but what I did not realize was how passionate I was about helping others take control of their homes and the stuff within.  34 Weeks gave me the opportunity to share some hints I have learned along the way and since then has even allowed me to speak with a MOPS group about how to declutter and clean, making your house a place that will be filled with God's peace, and allowing you to open your home to others.

34 weeks not only became a verb in our home and others, you know- "What happened to that basket?" "Oh, mom 34 weeked it!", but it also buried itself deeper and deeper in my heart.  We never run out of the need to clean, declutter, and take control of our homes.  It is NOT a one time deal, as nice as that would be.  

So let me answer a few questions-

Why are you doing this again?
Maybe because I am a glutton for punishment! ;)  Not really.  So many of you asked, so here we are.  Whether or not I posted, my family would be following this schedule.  It is just what we do.  I am thrilled that so many have found it to be helpful in their lives as well and it is fun to share and compare notes each week.  Cleaning, decluttering, and organizing are not just a one time fix.  Our homes do not remain static, no matter how hard we try - thus the need to "rinse and repeat," as one friend put it!

Why 34 Weeks?
It just worked out that way!  Can it be done faster?  I am sure it can.  But take it from those of us who have done this before - if you push too hard or try to work ahead you risk burnout.  This is not a race. Our homes did not get to the place they are now in a day and they will not be magically fixed in a day!

What does joining us mean?
That you will follow along as we go!  No need to subscribe (although we would love for you to subscribe) and nothing to fill out.  No fees!  No contracts.  Just hop on the blog each Monday for the week's assignment.  If you want an easy reminder, make sure to like our Facebook page- links will be posted there each Monday!

What do I do then?
How you tackle the assignment is up to you.  No one's house is quite the same and no one works in the same manner.  In addition, some projects will be harder or more time consuming than others. If you work during the week, you may find working on weekends is best for you.  If you are a busy mom of multiple children, you may enjoy enlisting their help and working as a team.  If you are a night owl, 15 minutes a night may be best for you.  Find what works for you and go for it!

Do I need to report in?
Nope!  But we would love it if you would help us encourage others by checking in occasionally!  We love when you post pictures on our Family, Faith and Fridays Facebook page! It helps inspire others, really it does.

What if my results don't look like yours?
OK, I made that question up.  But I want to say this - everyone's idea of clean is different.  Everyone's idea of decluttered is different.  Everyone's idea of organized is different.  We ARE ALL DIFFERENT!  This is not a competition.  It is a chance for YOU to take YOUR home back.  Enjoy YOUR results and know you are doing a GREAT job!

Why one week at a time?  Because these are not small projects.  We are deep cleaning, de-cluttering AND re-organizing!  Yes, it is a challenge.  Yes, it is worth it!  In the end you will feel like you have a new house and a new lease on life.  Trust me, I know!  It is freeing to unload stuff you don't need or love.  It feels good to walk into a house that is clean and says welcome.  And it saves much time and effort to live in an organized house!

I know some of you have gotten industrious and moved out a lot of stuff already.  Can I just encourage you to slow down a bit and wait for the rest of us?  It is exciting to get started but I know from experience that those who bolt out of the starting gate at lightening speed are usually the ones that fade out the fastest.  There is a reason we tackle one project or area one week at a time.  34 Weeks of Clean- our houses, our messes, and ALL that it encompasses is just one tiny part of our lives.  We must not let it become an idol.  It should NOT consume our lives.  (shhh, don't tell my kids!)  I truly believe your life can be blessed by 34 weeks, but there are many other blessings out there you don't want to miss.  Clean, declutter, and organize with us each week and then GO, enjoy your life.

Let me say it again, don't work ahead!  Please.  You will wear yourself out in just a few weeks.  Take your time each week and do it well.  Don't give up!  You CAN do this and you WILL be blessed by it!  Just remember it is a journey not a sprint.  Your house did not get in the shape it is in one day.  It is a slow creep, and it takes time to reverse the mayhem.

So each Monday, beginning on January 7th, we will be posting your new 34 Weeks of Clean assignment!  And yes, heads up, we will start with Christmas decorations.  If you are new, jump in and join the fun!  If you participated before, I am so glad you are back.  The posts will be updated (because my new house needs a lot of work) and expanded a bit so hopefully you won't get bored.  (Who gets bored while cleaning, anyway?)

Be ready to clean, purge, and organize your house back into shape and cheer each other on!  I am so thrilled you are joining us on this adventure!  Can't wait to get to know you!

Week 4- Fridge, Freezer and Floors
Week 5- Recipes 
Week 6- The Stove and Loose Ends 
Week 7- The Dining Room 
Week 8- The Living Room 
Week 9- Books 
Week 10- Bathrooms  
Week 11- The Foyer
Week 12- The Family Room and DVDs 
Week 13- Pictures and Scrapbooks
Week 14- Arts, Crafts and Hobbies 
Week 15- The Master Bedroom  
Week 16- The Master Closet 


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