The Nesting List and Living in the Present

It's funny how sometimes I can be tricked into thinking that “real life” will start once I finish my To Do list. That once it is complete, I'll be able to relax and enjoy things like time with my little ones, good books, sitting and watching waves hit a shore. In the midst of a List, it can feel like those sorts of things are on hold until everything is crossed off, until the house is completely “done” (whatever that means), and the meals are planned weeks ahead.

Reality is what it always is. The things I think of as “interruptions” to The List (like feeding children or keeping up with laundry) are the real life. They are the daily liturgy, the things that invade the false perception that the living must be ordered and controlled and planned out to be relished. Real life and the good life will always break out of the mold we try to stuff it in. The children will laugh before The List is done. You will find them playing an elaborate make-believe game and they might invite you to join. To enter back into childhood for a while. The adult in you might think you should wait, that you must at least do such-and-such or fold a load or finally organize that particular drawer before you can have freedom. The kitchen counters surely must be cleared before you can have any fun.

Today we started officially with the Classical Conversation community in my area. My little 4-year-old loved it, coming home talking about continents and satellites and experiments with temperature. I'm an introvert by nature so the social time of the morning (the moms stay in the class and are available to help) drained me. But overall it was good. Now I look at the week ahead and all I want to do is curl up with a little girl and read books about and help her trace continents on her map and sing songs with her about Charlemagne. I want to put together the first bit of the lapbook with her. There was an unrealistic part of me that wanted everything in the house to be done before this week started. That I'd be free for the homeschooling stuff once all the house projects were behind me. But even when I cross every last item on the list below off, I'll still have things to do in the house. One thing I'm determined to do in regards to homeschooling is seize the moments of interest my kids have about their studies and dive deep into the information with them. I don't want to squelch any joy of new learning with that silly Nesting List. So I won't. I'll fit it in here and there. It will get done eventually. I have crossed a large number of things off this past week or so, after all. Look how close I'm getting…

The Craft Studio:

  1. Have stock base cabinetry installed in our craft studio, and a long counter placed.
  2. Put the shelves I was previously using in craft studio against the wall on the counter, bolt them to wall for kids safety, and then add some trim around the tops to make them look built in. Oh, and also: caulk around things like crazy to finish the built in look.
  3. Add floating shelf above the sink for paintbrushes to live and dry after washing.
  4. Improve on ribbon storage and thread display storage on wall.
  5. Paint cabinets White Dove.
  6. Add labeled bin pulls to all new drawers and cabs.
  7. Organize all arts and craft supplies into cabs and shelves.
  8. Install kids locks on cabinets.
  9. Add “Create” logo on the wall.
  10. Consider how best to use corner spaces and walls for kid use.

The Mudroom:

  1. Change out ugly knobs on cabs for happy yellow ones.
  2. Improve the Mudroom sink: either paint the base or make a skirt for it. (decided not to change it!)
  3. Set up mudroom diaper changing station.
  4. Hang fun wall art, in yellows and greys. This includes kid's handprint art.

Kid's Bathroom:

  1. Paint walls (going with SW “exciting orange”)
  2. Change out lighting over sinks
  3. Install mirrors
  4. Create/obtain wall art
  5. Change out cabinet knobs.

Upstairs Halls:

  1. Paint walls (considering yellow and white horizontal strips if I'm brave!)
  2. Hang turquise frames along walls–consider Alphabet Art of some kind in them?
  3. Hang some inspiring word art in the Laundry Room (Make some myself)

Playroom (soon to be turned into my 2-year-old Son's Room, then in a couple years the Schoolroom):

  1. Paint walls (SW Rainwashed)
  2. Improve AC/heating plan.
  3. Put locks on attic doors (don't want a toddler sneaking into the attic!)
  4. Hang blackout Roman Blinds.
  5. Decide on and hang decorative window panels
  6. Weed out old/broken/annoying toys to donate/discard, and move my Daughter's toys to her room, infant toys to nursery.
  7. Organize toys and books remaining in Son's Room. This might entail new storage, but hopefully not.
  8. Set up the Big Boy Bed.
  9. Put up some Wall Art
  10. Install display bookshelves along one wall for Big Boy's books.
  11. Recover two floor pillows to match the curtain panels.

The Great Room:

  1. Change out sconces on either side of front door.
  2. Change out sconce on on stairwell.
  3. Hang drapes.
  4. New shades for lamps.
  5. Touch up wall paint.

The Keeping Room:

  1. Hang rods.
  2. Make drapes (using target panels and I plan to crochet a fun coral frindge/pom-pom ish border)
  3. Hang egg prints in the Keeping Room.
  4. Create and hang a Nest painting in Keeping Room. (my husband is getting me one for Christmas!!)
  5. Make a sign for over the door to kitchen: “there will be a bright tomorrow, all will be well.”


  1. Set up extra twin bed in nursery (bought two matching ones since the boys will share later!)
  2. Make two matching boy's quilts. Nautical theme. I'm thinking nautical flags?
  3. Research and obtain baby monitor with two cameras that I can view on my phone.
  4. Hang wall art, including oars, life preservers, Large letters for Baby's name. (also need to get new letters for my other kids names on their walls!)

Master Bedroom:

  1. Hang items on walls
  2. Organize items on dresser/declutter
  3. Hang Roman Blinds in Master Bath

Miscellaneous House Organization/Projects:

  1. Reorganize linens and sheets in the Laundry Room
  2. Junk Drawer in the kitchen!!
  3. Organize junky corner cabinet in Kitchen.
  4. Reorganize and secure all medications in house.
  5. Move storage ottoman to basement room.
  6. Measure basement room that Darlene is helping me figure out how to decorate: prepare her a file to send.
  7. Major Freezer Cooking: stock up on a pile of healthy dinners and such for the family when I'm postpartum!!
  8. Hang existing art in Guest Room.
  9. Hang photos in Garage/mudroom hall.
  10. Take down last year's old kid's art, Artkive it (its an app) and file the favorites for safekeeping.
  11. Hang the last items in the Library–decide which diplomas to frame hang.
  12. Finish alterations and sewing pile
  13. Fix old desk chair that's in the garage.
  14. Organize and clean out garage. {Not even sure where to start here!}
  15. Repair a few toys and the dollhouse.
  16. Cover/beautify windowblind over the door to garage.
  17. Make a sign with psalm 121 on it to hang somewhere. I love that psalm.
  18. Do all the Christmas Shopping ahead of time that I can!!
  19. Kid Safety Netting installed along deck rails (This got done thanks to my husband!)
  20. Install a chilproof gate/fence around the workout area in basement to keep kids from getting to weights and stuff.
  21. Touch up paint in downstairs bathroom.
  22. Plan a birthday party for my soon-to-be 5-year-old
  23. Get halloween costumes figured out
  24. Decorate house for fall and buy lighted garlands/12 foot tree for Christmas if they go on sale at Hobby Lobby


{ 1 comment… add one }

  • May September 8, 2013, 7:31 PM

    So much of that list is done. It can be daunting when we look at what remains on our lists, but really you have been knocking it out!
    Hope you love homeschooling. We did that for a portion of grade school with all three of our kids and I loved it!


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