Now that I’ve established why I’ve taken on this project, now here’s the how.
The taquitos, sandwich fixins, and cereal made it into the grocery cart on purpose. I like them. They are delicious and convenient, and making them doesn’t heat up the whole house. As much as I would love for every meal to be a slow food treasure, I have two jobs and two manuscripts to finish by the end of the year. So for me, a stash of emergency taquitos in the freezer is a vital part of a workable meal plan.
I just don’t want it to be the only plan.
This summer, getting it together means eating well and eating healthier without breaking the bank. Specifically, it looks like this:
1. Baking two loaves of bread a week – one to eat and one to share or freeze.
2. Making at least three big (i.e., at least two servings of leftovers) meals a week:
- One meal from my childhood – a little shout-out to Mom
- One meal inspired by what I find that week at the farmers’ market
- One meal that’s vegan (because I have not forgotten you, New Year’s Resolution)
Each week, I will post what I make and share a few recipes with you.
Getting it together also means getting my apartment in order. With the help of Apartment Therapy (both the book and the website) and Unstuff Your Life, and of course, my mother, who is the loudest of the voices in my head, I have divided the process into twelve weeks.
This week, I will be initiating the daily maintenance schedule that I will continue throughout the twelve weeks (and hopefully forevermore). The schedule requires a mere 30 minutes a day, which is about 25 more per day than I currently average in a week. The first fifteen minutes will focus on a specific area of the apartment, and the last fifteen minutes will be spent cleaning the kitchen. The schedule is as follows:
- Monday – entryway
- Tuesday – living room
- Wednesday – writing nook
- Thursday – bathroom
- Friday – kitchen (the whole 30 minutes)
- Saturday – bedroom
- Sunday – wherever needed
The majority of the remaining weeks will be spent deep-cleaning and organizing a specific area of the apartment:
- Week 2 – The B Word – Budgeting for the project
- Week 3 – Welcome – the entryway and kitchen table
- Week 4 – Sustain – the kitchen
- Week 5 – Entertain – the living room
- Week 6 – Create – the writing nook
- Week 7 – Wash- the bathroom
- Week 8 – Stash – laundry closet and craft storage
- Week 9 – Adorn – bedroom closet
- Week 10 – Rest – bedroom
- Week 11 – Reflect – review project and look ahead
- Week 12 – Celebrate – party!
Every Sunday, I will post a list of specific goals for the week and maybe – MAYBE – a before picture. By the end of the week, I will post a progress report.
Like I said on Sunday, I am not my mother. She doesn’t bake her own bread, and I don’t grow my own vegetables. I’m also lactose-intolerant and eat less meat than my parents do, so I reserve the right to adjust her recipes to fit my needs and tastes. And until I can afford to hire a full-time housekeeper (which, for the record, is one of the first things I’m doing if I should ever become inexplicably and grotesquely wealthy), my kitchen floor will probably never stay clean enough for anyone to eat off it.
And I’m okay with that.
But I’d be lying if I said that I didn’t want to be more like my mother. I enjoyed living in a clean house, and I enjoyed the homey atmosphere created by the smell of a home-cooked meal. I want my life to be more like that, and this summer I am going to make it so.