It’s the end of the first week of the new year. 1 down and 51 one to go. With all of the plans out there to get you motivated, it can be overwhelming. I’ve tried Apartment Therapy’s January Cure, FlyLady, 40 bags in 40 days, you name it. I can usually get about half way through before I get derailed. But each of them has it’s own valuable lesson and I’m finding that I’m building my own “plan” by picking what works for me.

My kitchen and sink seem to always be stacked. And I have always hated coming home  to a sink of dirty dishes. So this week, I’ve focused on keeping my sink empty and it and the counters clean and wiped down. And you know what, it’s worked.  I even got up early one morning after getting home very late the night before to make sure it was clean before I left for the day . And I’m really surprised how less stressful my evening work to home transition has been when I come home to a clean sink and counter. I don’t feel like I’m all ready behind the 8 ball on the To Do list and I don’t have to spend 15 to 20 minutes just getting the kitchen ready to start dinner. I realize this a no brainer to many, but in trying to be more mindful of how I feel and how to make permanent change, I’m finding that it’s small things that make the difference. Baby steps.

And as a reward, I used Apartment Therapy’s “buy flowers” suggestion. Coupled with the candle the family gave me for Xmas, my kitchen is becoming more of a oasis rather than a pain point.

PS – I love flowers and wish we had a more European mentality and availability. I really love this philosophy about why they are important in our homes and life on a daily basis.

Think of the purchase as a gift to your home. It is an enjoyable, (affordable!) little luxury but it goes beyond just that. The flowers are a visual symbol of the commitment you are making to care for your home. In the Eight Step Home Cure, Maxwell wrote: As simple as it sounds, the act of buying flowers for your home holds great significance and will heal your home on many levels.