09 March 2009

We So Crafty

Today was my day to host Cleaning Club. Cleaning Club began as an offer to help wash dishes one play day. It has grown into three women and their collective 11 children (to be 12 late this year) rotating weekly through each other's houses undertaking projects too big, or too overwhelming for one mom to tackle alone. The kids mostly play and help watch the toddlers. The projects, which alone would likely take all day- if not days to accomplish, generally take about an hour to an hour and a half. Then we share the food which we all have, and eat lunch together.

It is such an enormous blessing and gift to me to have these women in my life. When I go to their houses, I get to go home with the satisfying feeling that I have truly helped another woman make her life and the life of her family just a tiny bit better. It feels great to clean other people's stuff, nothing like the drain I feel trying to clean and organize my own space. They also have such a unique set of gifts and talents, which I feel so blessed to get to experience and from which I might benefit and be inspired.

Unfortunately, I forgot to take a "Before" picture to show what an inaccessible trash heap, dumping ground our art cabinet had become but here is the end result:

Here's a picture of the inside of each of those green bins:

As we were eating lunch, I had the idea that maybe my friends could help me to get prepared for dinner, as well, since I have been having so much trouble getting my act together enough to actually cook for my family in these early weeks of pregnancy. They chopped peppers and onions and cilantro, while I put on a pot of rice. All I need to do at dinner time is saute the chopped veggies, add the cans of tomatoes and beans, add a little wine and fresh lime juice...and then serve over the rice. If I am feeling motivated enough, I'll make some chipotle cornbread.

**This post originally featured on After the fire came a gentle whisper..., with the following comments:

faerieeva said...

Ooh... I love the organised look of that art cabinet. I am trying to get Joseph into crafting and colouring. So far, no go. *L* Though we had fun yesterday at my attempt to have him fingerpaint.

Kat said...

What a great idea! What's cilantro though?

Blondie said...

Ooh, nice work Shannon. You're like a Catholic version of thepioneerwoman.com Except for the cilantro (or coriander, whatever). Can't stand cilantro. Cheerio, Antigone.

Kat said...

Aaaaaah - cilantro = coriander. Thanks!! :-)

~SHANNON~ said...

Hi. I linked to you through the "Life, love, laundry" blog. I just had to comment on this post! A cleaning group is SUCH a super idea!! What an awsome resource to have. I'd love to know how that was started, or what kind of projects you all tend to tackle at eachothers houses? I'm so jealous!! What a great idea. ps. your dinner sounded yummy too:)

Shannon said...

We basically started it after talking casually about it. One day while over Jennifer's house for a playdate--we washed her dishes together and cleaned off her counter....and it was born. We asked our friend Rachel to join us and voila! Cleaning Club was born. Mostly we do some bigger projects which would bee too labor-intensive or time-consuming to do alone with small children around. Things we've done: cleaning out cabinets, cleaning out and detail washing the fridge and freezer, an all over house cleaning, cleaning out closets, framing and hanging pictures, cleaning off the trash landing zone desk in the kitchen, caught up baskets upon baskets of laundry.....things like that. It's not only been helpful to regain some order in our homes--but also as a deep source of camaraderie amongst us. There's something very awesome about inviting people into your closets. LOL! It only takes one or two other willing people and a day where you can all meet consistently. It's amazing how quickly the projects go, as well as how very satisfying it is to do work at someone else's house. I actually prefer going to Jennifer and Rachel's houses to clean--as even though I really appreciate their help--it feels more satisfying to have helped them out. (And my guess is that they probably feel the same way.)

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