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It took me two hours, but my room/closet is CLEAN! {Clean Your House Before Christmas Challenge: Day 1 update}

Clean Your House for Christmas Challenge

Okay, so you know how I promised that I was going to get this post up by 6 p.m. EST. Um, yeah.

And how I thought that I would get my whole morning list — including thoroughly cleaning out both of our bedrooms — done by noon? Ahem. I seriously have an issue with underestimating how long things are going to take me!

That said, the first part of the morning went along fairly smoothly and I mostly followed my Morning Plan to a tee.

{Well, except I never did make it out of my yoga pants. I just exercised, threw on a sweatshirt, and put my hair up. Kind of gross, I know, but sometimes that’s just life and I’m all about keeping it real here. However, I promise that I *will* shower tonight before bed.}

Clean Your House for Christmas Challenge

I started the day with finishing up the last lesson in the She Reads Truth Thankfulness study (yes, I’m a little behind!), reading a chapter from The Best Yes, and writing in my Gratitude Journal.

Clean Your House for Christmas

Silas was done with his morning chores and had already eaten breakfast, so he got to open a gift from the Blessing Box that my mom made for him to countdown to Christmas.

Clean Your House for Christmas Challenge

Each day, we read a short paragraph about something related to Christmas or an attribute of Jesus and then he gets to open a small gift that serves as a reminder of that. Today it was about Jesus being light.

Clean Your House for Christmas Challenge

When Jesse got home from the gym, he whipped up a batch of Protein-Packed Bacon Omelet Bites for breakfast. These turned out so yummy! I’ll post the recipe later this week. {And yes, I’m spoiled that Jesse makes breakfast like this many mornings!}

We’re on a new schedule now that my book is done and I’m overseeing breakfast/morning chores and homeschooling in the mornings while Jesse works and then we swap at lunch time and he takes over homeschooling and afternoon kid activities while I work.

We got a membership to a office-sharing space a few months ago and Jesse usually goes there in the mornings and I go in the afternoons. We sometimes work from home, too, depending upon the day.

We’re learning what works and what doesn’t as we go… but overall this both of us sharing the homeschooling/housework/business responsibilities has been a true win for our family at this season of our lives.

Clean Your House for Christmas Challenge

I got in a quick run on the treadmill, and then Jesse left to go work and I cleaned up the kitchen while the kids finished breakfast.

Clean Your House for Christmas Challenge

While I finished up the kitchen and some laundry, the girls finished their morning routine and chores and then got busy on their school projects for the day.

Clean Your House for Christmas Challenge

I helped Silas with his kindergarten workbooks while the girls worked on their morning schoolwork. He is eating up school like it’s the best idea ever invented… which makes teaching him a lot of fun! 🙂

For the most part, the girls are able to work pretty independently on many of their projects. Jesse grades everything every night and goes over what they missed/are struggling with. He’s SUCH a great teacher and I love watching him patiently working with them on math problems or science experiments or helping them research something for an essay they are writing.

Clean Your House for Christmas Challenge

After Silas finished his Kindergarten lessons, I worked on the laundry and finished a few cleaning projects and then we all sat at the kitchen table and eat lunch while I read today’s devotional and a chapter from our current read aloud book.

I had planned to get started on the bedrooms after this, but it was almost noon and I needed to leave with Jesse to drop him off at the car shop to pick up his car (it’s been in the shop off and on for the past week because of some weird issues it’s been having — we are hopeful that it’s finally fixed!). Jesse got home right around noon, we all loaded in my car, and drove to the shop. I dropped them all off and drove home while Jesse took the kids to Kathrynne’s swim team practice.

I’m sill recovering from a head cold today and not feeling 100% at all, so I decided to work from home this afternoon instead of going into the shared office space to work. I had a podcast interview at 1:30 p.m. and then emails to answer, projects to work on, posts to draft, comments to respond to, and lots of other little projects to attend to.

Before I knew it, it was 5:30 p.m. and I still hadn’t gotten the bedrooms clean. So, I finished up my blog work for the day and got busy on the bedroom…

Clean Your House for Christmas

At first glance, the bedroom doesn’t look too bad.

{Yes, don’t freak out that our bed is unmade… I try to make it every day, but it doesn’t always happen. Still working on developing that habit!}

Clean Your House for Christmas Challenge

But look closer in the closet and you’ll see it needs LOTS of help.


There’s a suitcase that I never fully unpacked from last week’s trip, a box of some odds and ends of winter hats and gloves that I only recently pulled out from storage… and has been getting all sorts of things tossed into it as it’s sat in our closet!


And there’s an overflowing tub of CD’s and DVD’s that desperately needs to be gone through.

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I went through all the shelves, the overflowing tub, all the dresser drawers, unpacked the suitcase, organized all the shelves, and found a LOT of things to get rid of.


After an hour and a half, it looked SO much better!


Kaitlynn and Silas busied themselves helping me organized my jewelry. 🙂


Then I dusted — including dusting the fan blades that had never been dusted since we moved here.


Yikes! They were BAD! This was just from one blade!


I cleaned the floor, made the bed, and lit a candle. And it looked worlds better.


And it didn’t just look good, it felt so good because I had found this entire box full of stuff to donate to Goodwill!

I didn’t even make it to the Kids’ Room today, but 2 hours of deep cleaning was enough for one day. I’ll try to tackle it tomorrow!


Do not be silent & You Could Win This Stack of Books!

In my cleaning today, I found this stack of books that I’ve been meaning to give away on my blog for about a month now. Who wants to win them? To win, just leave a comment on this post and I’ll choose one winner tomorrow evening and will mail them to you so you’ll have them in time for Christmas. Most are brand-new or in like-new condition and would be great for gifts for people on your Christmas list!

Did you work on cleaning your house today? If you blogged about participating in this Clean Your House For Christmas Challenge, leave the direct link to your post below that is specifically about this challenge. Or, leave a comment telling us how your cleaning went today.

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  • julie zep says:

    I’ve been wanting that Ann Voskamp one!
    Good job on your cleaning. You go, girl!

  • Kate says:

    Thank you for the inspiration! And I would love to win this stack!!

  • Pam says:

    Good Job!

  • Luba says:

    Great job, Crystal. You got much accomplished today. ☺

  • Shelli Mader says:

    I am following this challenge and blogging about it too! I hoped to go through our 3 bedrooms today, but only got my daughter’s room organized. A good start though!

  • Shelli Mader says:

    I only got 1 of our 3 bedrooms cleaned today too!

  • Kari Biddle says:

    Great job on cleaning today!

  • Yvonne Nisly says:

    I would feel very blessed if I would win a stack like that!

  • Jean says:

    Love it! Your bedroom looks amazing and your honesty is motivating!

  • Tina Clum says:

    I am very much excited to clean a room out tomorrow.

  • Tammy says:

    The biggest area that needs cleaning right now are my kitchen cupboards and drawers. I am hoping to get to them on Wednesday!

  • maegen says:

    I’m going to start my house tomorrow! Always motivated when I see other people doing these mini challenges.

  • Christine says:

    Thanks for your blog!

  • Kelly says:

    Good work. I so need to do a thorough cleaning of our closets. Those books would be awesome to win!

  • Jenetta Penner says:

    Great job, and most especially loved the part where you’re able to “discover” things you can easily giveaway which would just otherwise be left to go unnoticed somewhere in your house.

    Will try to get this same “cleaning the house” stuff soon, and hopefully I can also find “small treasures” I can giveaway to pay it forward. 🙂

  • Staci says:

    Good job. I need to get on this inspiring Christmas cleaning bandwagon with you! Thanks for the giveaway!

  • megan says:

    Great job! I need to clean some closets out… hardest thing is getting started.

  • Uma @ Centsible Indian says:

    Didn’t expect you need 2 hours to clean your bedroom as your house always looks spectacular. Thanks for being honest. I cleaned our dining area (took me 10 minutes to clean it. I’m having a crazy week and I’m happy that I’m able to clean it even though it’s only a 10 minutes work).

  • Rachelle Jones says:

    I started on my girls roomothis evening but have alot more to do tomorrow! Hoping to clear out a lot of clutter before Christmas. Would live to win those books 🙂

  • Robyn says:

    I would LOVE to get those books!!!

  • Hannah F says:

    I literally deep cleaned the entire house today! Not too hard with just one bathroom and 1400 square feet for 5 people. I’m exhausted but thrilled to be done all at once. Closets were done previously so that helped a lot. Tomorrow is the day to get laundry caught up.

  • Rachel b says:

    I spent the day yesterday trying to reclaim our bedroom…but there is still work to be done!

  • Jessica says:

    I had to work the evening shift tonight, but cleaning up is on my morning to do list for tomorrow. Thanks for the chance to win, I loved “Say Goodbye to Survival Mode.” I read it at a time I was really needing some motivation and inspiration! (And I got it from my local library, keeping it frugal lol.)

  • Amy says:

    I love your house! I noticed the Buddy Davis/AIG DVDs. Love that place! I had the privilege of interning there a couple of summers.

  • Carrie Mcglynn says:

    You are a great inspiration to me.

  • Stevi says:

    I wish it would only take me an hour and a half to clean! Right now, because of our living situation we only have our bedroom for ALL our stuff, and our daughters small room for ALL her stuff. Its so hard to keep everything neat and organized. We don’t have much room, do you know of any good like organization systems/storage containers?

  • Jennifer says:

    Loved seeing this! Looks like you got a lot done today. I need to do this too!

  • Rachel says:

    Great work! I love seeing your before and after pics. Thanks for sharing real life with us.

    I just did some basic cleaning today. Feeling a cold coming on, so we’re trying to not over-due and get sick

  • Amber says:

    Oh boy! I’m so glad I’m not the only one! I only got my room and closet done today as well. The kid’s rooms WILL get done tomorrow! See, what had happened was, when I really deep clean, I’m always like, “Squirrel!” I find pictures that have been shoved away so I have to stop and take a trip down memory lane, or I find something that doesn’t belong in that room so I have to take it to the room it belongs in and then I get completely distracted with something else, or I bite off more than I can chew and decide to go through every article of clothing we own to see what needs to be gotten rid of or put away for next season. All three of these things happened to me today

  • kelly says:

    I didn’t get to my bedroom today! I will try to add it to tomorrow’s “to do list”. Thanks for the chance to win the stack of books!

  • Carrie O. says:

    I didn’t clean today, but I got a big “to-do” marked off my list. I’m due to have our 4th baby in early January and I still hadn’t filled out my pre-registration paperwork for the hospital (apparently I was supposed to fill it out and mail it in during my 2nd trimester 🙂 ……..

    I just kept looking at it everyday and then getting overwhelmed with the thought of filling it all out because there were so many pages.

    Well, I finally got it all completed today and in the mail! It feels so good to get it marked off my list!

  • Nicole says:

    I managed to put away a few loads of laundry and I have a clean sink. Score!

  • Summer says:

    Seeing other people’s before and after pictures always inspires me! Great job Crystal! My husband and I tackled our scary basement, and it looks world’s better. Always more to do though, right? 🙂

  • Julia Moore says:

    Better late than never! I’m trying to be more consistent in my wake up time.

  • Jen H says:

    Even before you cleaned up, your closet was way less messy than mine! Time to get some cleaning done around here. 🙂

  • Rachel Anna says:

    I didn’t accomplish the cleaning I had intended to do today, but your amazing work has inspired me to make sure I get it done tomorrow! Thanks for the encouragement!

  • Shannon says:

    Way to stick with your cleaning goals even when your day didn’t go as planned! Thanks for sharing!

  • Kristina Stewart says:

    That looks like an AWSOME stack of books! I was going to order the Gratitude Journal today, but it’s out of stock on Amazon. 🙁

  • Beth says:

    I actually cleaned our bedroom today for the first time in months!!!

  • Amy S. says:

    Thanks for the chance to win. I would love to win the Gratitude journal.

  • Jessie says:

    I cleaned the master bedroom today! It’s been a disaster for weeks, so it felt so go

  • Angela C. says:

    Thanks for the inspiration. We are trying to declutter this week along with you.

  • Sandi Menzel says:

    I am impressed by how you and your husband have a schedule and share in the home, schooling, work and children responsibilities. Your post is an inspiration and reminder that we can “eat an elephant, one bite at a time.” Looking forward to more inspiration. Love your mother’s daily gift box also. Merry Christmas.

  • Lisa S. says:

    Great job! I hope my daughter feels better tomorrow so I can do some deep cleaning also! For now, I’ll just have to ignore the messes and cuddle with my sick little girl…these moments (even the more difficult ones) won’t last forever… 🙂

  • Sonia says:

    Boy, do I need to do this too. Thanks for the inspiration!

  • Sarah says:

    My closet is where I’ve hidden our Christmas gifts so until I wrap them, I’d have to pass on the cost. Our bedroom is also my make-shift office so I really need a day to clean it up. Thanks for the inspiration and maybe I’ll get to it later this week!

  • Anne says:

    The stack of books looks great!

  • Tara says:

    Thanks for the giveaway!

  • Kathy D says:

    Looks good, Crystal! I would love to have a bedroom without carpeting! I’d also love to win the books 🙂 Merry Christmas!

  • Kelcie says:

    Thanks for your post and your openess into your life! I intended to clean my room today but things don’t always go as planned with a 3 week old and a 16 month old- maybe tomorrow 😉

  • Jamey says:

    Thank you for the inspiration!!

  • Sara Allen says:

    I’d love to read any of those books. Your book is even on my wish list for Christmas! Didn’t do much cleaning today, I like you have a cold right now. Not super useful at the moment.

  • Heart and Haven says:

    Great job on the closet clean out…it looks sooo much better!

    I got all the laundry put away (family of 6, this is a big accomplishment lol!). I will go through the kids’ clothes tomorrow when they’re at school, but with all the laundry cleaned/put away that should be easier to do.

    The kids are about to go to bed and then I can dust/vacuum my room.

  • kenesha says:

    Reminds me what I have to do this weekend! 😉

  • Beth says:

    Your room and closet look lovely! I don’t make my bed daily either, but would love to get into the habit. It feels so good when things are organized and pretty. I try to enjoy the times when that happens here! 🙂

  • Barbie Posteluk says:

    Great job 😉

  • Angie H says:

    Magic erased the walls and washed the baseboards in two rooms. Woohoo!

  • Laura says:

    I love these posts that are a peak into your day! Thank you!

  • Michelle says:

    I was able to get a good whole house clean finished today. Tomorrow, we are going to tackle our bedrooms!

  • Karen says:

    I love these cleaning challenges! They definitely help motivate me. And thanks for the chance to win some new reads. 🙂

  • [email protected] Your Cash says:

    I finally managed to wipe down all my cabinets and baseboards today which has been needed for about a month. Of course while I was doing it my son found a box of my husband’s tools and put the pieces everywhere. Oh well, I should have known better…He was being way too quiet!

  • Kendra Slatt says:

    I’m always so impressed by how minimalist your spaces are. Seems very peaceful. 🙂 We are working bit by bit on getting there in our house but it’s a long road so thank you for the encouragement! Also, you probably already know this, but just in case – Say Goodbye to Survival Mode was recommended by Michele Singletary in her Washington Post column this past Sunday as one of her book club favorites for giving as gifts this holiday season. Awesome!

  • April says:

    Thank you for keeping it real! Love seeing the progress you made and how you involved your kids 🙂

  • Julie C says:

    Good for you!

    Would you share why you like the dressers in the closet? Looks like you have space in the bedroom but your closet is pretty full.

    • Jo says:

      Great question! We put them there as a safety precaution, actually. There is a door behind them that you can get out onto the attic over the garage — and if you step in certain parts of the attic, you’ll go through the ceiling/sheetrock. Because we often have families over with young children, we wanted to prevent the remote possibility of a child coming into our closet, opening the small door, and falling through the attic ceiling.

      Our room is pretty bare right now… we want to get some things up on the wall, just haven’t gotten that done yet. Our friends — who came over and helped decorate the rest of our house — are begging to come over and finish our room and a few other rooms. But I have to figure out what I want to put up and if I need to buy anything to do so. And I’ve kind of let that go to the back burner the past two months. Mostly because bare walls just don’t bother me. 🙂

      • Julie C says:

        I wonder if a lock could be added to the door? If you are renting, I would talk to your owner about the potential danger. Safety first!

      • Ellen says:

        We are so different! We moved in May, and I’ve been using all my spare moments putting things on the walls and decorating. I like the challenge of doing it well AND on a budget. It’s a creative outlet and I don’t feel settled in a house until I put my touch on it. In some ways, I’m envious that you don’t mind bare walls, but I’m also dying to decorate that room for you! 🙂

  • Kathleen says:

    I’ve been working on my closet ( in very small steps )

  • Jessica says:

    I make our bed everyday, but it is always right before we get in it. I like to have the sheets and covers situated “just so” but don’t ever seem to get it done in the morning.

  • Debbie says:

    Encouraged by your post to do the same with my house!

  • Donna says:

    Yes, life happens and we don’t always, or even most of the time, accomplish what we hope to, but there’s always LOTS to be thankful for anyway!

  • Diana says:

    Thanks for making me feel better! I only got through half the kids’ clothes before the toddler was jumping off the bed scaring the baby and we decided to quit and eat lunch because we were all getting hangry 😉

    Sometimes it just takes a little motivation to get going, and then momentum helps you keep going. Thanks for the motivation, and we’ll see tomorrow if the momentum has kicked in or not! 😉

  • Mellissa Lopez says:

    I cleaned my kitchen ceiling to floor instead. With some help from my 13 year old and 3 year old ( she had a melt down beacuae there we no more dishes to rinse). It was nice to see the two of them work together and feel accomplished at something!

  • sarah says:

    Right now we’re in a season of survival but I feel good about what we got done today so for now that’s enough!

  • Allie d says:

    Thank you so much for having this challenge this week. I got a lot accomplished today in the bedroom and it feels so good!

  • Robyn says:

    I so need to do this… To every room!

  • Beth Anne says:

    Other than lots of dishes, I didn’t work on cleaning my house today. Woops! You sounded great for still recovering from your cold, Crystal! And you sure do accomplish a lot even when you’re not at 100% I loved seeing the before and after of the bedroom – looks great and has me motivated to do some cleaning and organizing tomorrow 🙂

  • Brandy says:

    Looks good! I worked on cleaning my kitchen today. It had gotten overrun with Christmas odds & ends along with all the other things that find there way to our counters. So much better now!

  • Margy R says:

    Thanks for the inspiration I desperately need to clean out my closet.

  • Tiffany says:

    I also cleaned today, too! And not just “shove it all in another room” either. Haha. Feels great! We’ll see how long it takes to get messy again 😉

  • Bobbi says:

    I didn’t follow your routine, but got our whole house vacuumed and ALL the clean laundry put away. I just have to say that my routine is different than yours since I have a 1 and 3 yr old and work full time outside of our home, but this post still motivated me to get a move on cleaning up the house for Christmas! I have 2 weeks off which I need to use to do some things for myself, plan some fun activities with my kids and husband, and declutter, but could easily just spend the time catching up on laundry and regular household tasks so….this will help motivate me to stay on top of things so I can use that time off for the more important things I have planned. (P.S. I’d LOVE to win that stack of books!!!)

  • Beth says:

    I so enjoy posts like this! I am looking forward to actually having closets again. we have been living in a very old farmhouse for about a year. The hubby and I have no closet, so our clothes are on rods in the living room. It has certainly been an adventure!

  • Jennifer Beard says:

    I did not get to any housecleaning today because our power went out for hours.

  • charity says:

    Glad to see you got some things done. Thanks for shareing and being honest.

  • Michele says:

    I have been considering moving my tall dresser into my walk in closet. Is it beneficial in organization?

  • Amie says:

    I desperately wanted to clean with you today. My bedroom could definitely use a little love, but my little love was still sick today. We’re going on day 3 but I’m hopeful he’s on the mend and I’ll be able to get things done tomorrow. My sweet girls did start the laundry, though, and I ran the dishwasher and took out the trash, so we’re making progress.

  • Joyce Bubb says:

    What a great challenge! I’ve started following Michael Hyatt and between the two of you, I love the challenges to grow and be all that God wants me to be.

  • Emily says:

    Enjoy the snippets of your day. 🙂

  • Sheila says:

    I am traveling for work right now. I wish I were home. My bedroom is fine, but the closet has some things I need to drop off at a donation point.

  • Stacey says:

    Great job on the bedroom! I really appreciate your transparency! We all love that you keep it real 🙂

  • Sheila says:

    Intend to tackle bedrooms tomorrow. Didn’t see the five day cleaning challenge post until late in the day. We always attempt a deep clean before the holidays. We have so much that could be donated if we could find the time to go through it. Thanks too for posting about how you juggle the work/homeschool dynamic.

  • Amy says:

    I attempted more unpacking bathroom today. With 5 kids it is hard to balance the time.mommy would love house unpacked and spotless yet kids need attention.

  • Nora Rodriguez says:

    Mondays are my house cleaning days! Always feels so good to go to bed with a clean house! My biggest accomplishment today was I got all the lanudry done, yeah for me

  • Kelly sue says:

    This makes me motivated to work out, too!

  • Becky Hurrie says:

    I hardly make my bed either! It’s good to know I’m not the only one. 🙂 this challenge came at the right time as I want to get our house into ship shape especially with Christmas around the corner. It will be nice and relaxing to wake up to a clean house on that day! Thanks for the opportunity to win some books!

  • Denise says:

    Great job! I need to deep clean my closet soon.

  • Christine says:

    I only did some dishes

  • Verónica says:

    I absolutely love reading your blog! Honestly I wish I could have participated bit just having surgery makes what I can do very limited! But I love how you showed life… You came up with a plan and life got involved… And instead of giving up the idea you just modified! I can’t do the deep cleaning like I want but I did throw small things away and pick small things and placed them where they belonged. Hope to be able to do this in the weeks to come!!!!

  • Chelsea says:

    This post makes me smile. When I read your blog today and saw your goal was to get done by noon, I thought “wow props to her! I have a similar to do list and my goal is to get done by 5!” 🙂 I didn’t get everything done either, by the way, but I am proud of what I accomplished. And I would love to get my hands on that Ann Voskamp book!

  • Amy says:

    Nice work! I don’t love cleaning but I will be working on my house Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday because it really needs a deep clean before company.

  • pamela stamps says:

    I work at a library and have book glutton issues. I love to read, but sometimes my to read pile is overwhelming. I am working on limits on what I check out to keep it manageable 🙂

    • Heart and Haven says:

      hahaha….love the “book glutton” comment! My husband also loves to read…the Kindle was the best invention EVER for him! He checks out many books for free from the library for his Kindle too!

  • Emma McArdel says:

    I managed to get all of the Christmas decor up and the boxes put away. Plus got the floors cleaned and dishes done!

  • Kaitlin L says:

    I didn’t get to my room today, but I did get most of my ironing done! Hoping to catch up tomorrow!

  • Shauna Janssen says:

    I would love these! Especially the gratitude journal! <3

  • Amy says:

    Great job!!

  • Morgan says:

    I did some dusting and vacuuming. It didn’t feel right putting Christmas decorations out on dusty shelves, haha!

  • Cara H. says:

    I would LOVE it if my room only took two hours to completely organize. Way to go! I’m going to try to tackle mine this week… then maybe find a few new good books to read as a reward 🙂

  • Sarah says:

    Good work! It’s hard for me to motivate myself to do cleaning projects later in the day, so I am impressed!

  • Beth Enk says:

    Our bedroom needs this so bad. I feel a little more motivated now and I know I will so much better once I finally tackle it.

  • Libby says:

    Looks great! Now I’m thinking of my ceiling fans…and how long it’s been since they’ve been dusted…*sigh*… But we did get a load of laundry washed and dried (notice I didn’t say folded/put away), dropped a package off at post office and unclogged the shower drain. So…that’s something at least. Thanks hubby! 🙂

  • Amie says:

    Some days my only milestone with household chores is making our bed! The half unpacked suitcase is awesome. I think most all of us have done that a time or two. Lol. I also love being able to catch up with our donation boxes. It perhaps sounds a little weird, but it is such a wonderful feeling to continue to pay it forward. Our family has been blessed many times by others in our time of need and our children have seen firsthand how our sweet Lord uses us to do His work.

  • Allison Cherry says:

    Enjoyed this post! Thank you for sharing! Merry Christmas! 🙂

  • Katy says:

    I’m so excited to have a chance to win some awesome books! I am working on catching up on cleaning so that I can enjoy a relaxing Christmas break with my kiddos.

  • Lorrie Miller says:

    I’d love to win! Thanks for the contest!

  • Jessica W says:

    My house was clean for company Sunday, so I gave myself the day off today! 🙂

  • Davonne Parks says:

    My bedroom looks exactly how it did this morning BUT my nine-year-old daughter has project cubbies on the wall above her sewing desk and every single cubby was crammed full of ongoing projects. I helped her empty ELEVEN of those 25 cubbies! We mended clothes, patched up a homemade doll, sewed a pillowcase, finished a couple of Christmas gifts, and tossed a few small projects that she was no longer interested in finishing. Since I’m not a good seamstress, this felt like an enormous accomplishment!

    I also did the dishes, finished decorating the Christmas tree, and helped my girls wrap all of the Christmas gifts that arrived in the mail today.

    All in all, a very productive homemaking day 🙂 Thanks for the encouragement!

  • Ashley Bradford says:

    I would love to win! I love all the books you recommend!

  • Osen says:

    Very inspiring. I also need to clean my bedroom. I like how minimalist your bedroom is,

  • Heather Prewo says:

    It looks great but your house is so neat and empty already. I could spend 2 hours just cleaning my sock drawer. I deep clean 4X’s a year and it’s still not enough.

  • Marshan alma says:

    Thank you for showing us your mess. It totally makes me like you even more! Ha!

  • Cara M says:

    I need to get organized and prepare for my Christmas company!

  • Lyndi says:

    Cleaning out is a wonderful feeling! Would love to win this stack of books! 🙂

  • Casey t says:

    Thanks for being so transparent! And for opportunity to win some awesome books!! I cleaned the kitchen and laundry room.

  • Cindy says:

    I focused on picking up the clutter off the floors, vacuuming, and making beds. It made a world of difference and motivated me to tackle the rest tomorrow 😉

  • Jessica @ The Abundant Wife says:

    I would LOVE to have that stack of books! I’ve been wanting to read many of them!

    Today I gave my bathroom a much-needed cleaning. I cleaned the toilet, sprayed the shower, swept and mopped the floor, shook out the rug, and wiped down the counters, sink, mirror, and toilet surfaces.

    Thanks for this challenge! I’m looking forward to cleaning with you to get my house ready for the holidays!


  • Melissa says:

    I just came across this challenge at the end of my day and I love it!!! I guess I’ll be starting on this tomorrow (hooray!)

  • Brittani says:

    Thanks for the motivation! I too didn’t get all if the items checked off the list but got a great start on our upstairs bedrooms. Our little guy “helped me” scatter the hangers in his closet while I went through his clothes that needed hanging up or boxing up due to being too small. We just moved into this house so it was a treat to find a short challenge to get things done and put away in logical places! The shorter the better these days as we are expecting our next little one very soon! Thanks again, take care!

  • Kaitlin Sacco says:

    Your transparency and honesty are so refreshing! This post is tremendously inspirational and makes me feel like purging!

  • Ian K. says:

    Thanks for keeping it real! Inspired to start my own 5 (probably 10) days of cleaning! Sure need it with four little tornadoes in this house!

  • Janine says:

    Deep cleaning is on my to do list tomorrow! 🙂 The worst part about cleaning is starting, but then it feels so good when things come together.

  • Suzie says:

    I’m happy if I get the laundry done! New baby here.

  • Mandy P says:

    Those omelet bites look yummy!

  • Sara Truax says:

    Cleared off my desk today that was totally buried!

  • Laura says:

    Great inspirational post!

  • Manda says:

    we keep my 9 months old clothes in containers in my bathroom on open shelves and today a paired them all up into outfits and purged anything without a mate. I reorganized all the totes and purged te bathroom of anything that wasn’t necessity and rehomed it to another part of the house.

  • onita says:

    I didn’t get a chance to clean my house today. It would take me way longer than 2 hours to clean all our bedrooms 🙂

  • Anna @ Feminine Adventures says:

    I didn’t get any deep cleaning done, but got the basics back in order after a whirlwind weekend and finally did a bit of Christmas shopping. Your bedroom looks beautiful!

  • Debbie Bolen says:

    I love how well you and your husband work together. Your room looks so much more inviting and pleasant. I always feel better when I have organized things. Good job.

  • Wendy Stephens says:

    I am constantly cleaning and purging items from my house, but I find my girls room and their toys and clothes to be the most challenging. I am still working in there!

  • Karen M says:

    I love that you are so real… and get messy closets just like the rest of us!

  • Courtney says:

    I was able to get the sink cleaned – FINALLY!!!!! 🙂 Dishes are finally done!!! Next for this week – tidy up the living room, kid’s toys, and hope to get MBR closet cleaned out more!

  • Laura's Ramblings says:

    Totally not doing this today. Was out of the house all day and took the rest of my evening to pay bills/balance checkbook. Which, I guess, is cleaning something up, right??
    Anyway, I was wondering if you would tell me your routine and curriculum for your girls. I just started homeschooling this year and would love to painlessly add some things in, but I’m not a good scheduler yet.

  • Cambria says:

    I’m impressed!! I was able to work on some of the clutter in our kitchen today and get all the appliances wiped down. Planning to finish the kitchen tomorrow and tackle our bedroom/closet!

  • Miriah says:

    I didn’t do a thorough clean up yet, but got it mostly picked up! Would love to get these great books!

  • Sabrina says:

    I cleaned my living room and dining room today:) Hoping to tackle my laundry monster tomorrow!

  • Courtney P says:

    Such amazing work!

  • Samantha says:

    I would love to win that stack of books! Good thing you can’t see into my house, my ceiling fans need to be soaked to get clean… ugh, project for this week 🙂

  • Robin says:

    I did not even get a chance to touch my problem area of the house today. I think I am better off to focus my efforts over the weekends. When I got home from work our amazing neighbors stopped over for a quick visit to give my oldest (3) a birthday present. Of couse he was thrilled and wanted to show off 🙂 then it was dinnertime and off to bed. Since my youngest is just 3 months I still make every effort to go to bed at the same time since we may have overnight wake ups.

  • Mindy says:

    I am also battling a head cold and didn’t get much done in the home today – too much errand running! Kudos to you for getting so much done despite illness. Inspired for sure!

  • Lisa says:

    What a great stack of books to win! Today, I cleaned my younger daughter’s room, including going through her short-sleeved shirts and socks. The kid is 4 1/2 and still had 12-24 month socks in there! 😉

  • Anna says:

    Great challenge! Thanks for the inspiration and I would love to win the books 🙂

  • Brighid says:

    Living room: vacuumed, spot treated areas and got some of the clutter put away. Kitchen: many cooking projects today and kept on top of all the dishes that were dirtied. Also made some headway on kitchen clutter.

  • Caroline says:

    Something about decorating for Christmas makes me want to really clean first! Did part of the family room this weekend but this motivated me to plan on those tough rooms–and closets! Thanks for always being so real! Love your blog!

  • Chung says:

    I would love to win those books.

  • Sonya M. says:

    I need to do this. My girls have so many toys they could bless others with… Thank you for sharing better late than no post;-)

  • Melanie S says:

    Love this post! Breaking it into 5 days makes it seem so much easier!

  • Becky says:

    I see a couple books I have been wanting to get for a while now!! 🙂 I focused on our toy area and bedroom today. Thanks!

  • Lydia says:

    Good job, persevering through that. Our room is the hardest place for me to clean!

  • Elizabeth says:

    My husband and I worked on unpacking boxes (we moved a week ago)…the never ending chore!

  • Rachel says:

    Today I spent about 2 hours creating a filing system, purging and dealing with 2 apple boxes full of paperwork and things that have been dumped on our kitchen island. It is clear and I’m left with one shoebox-sized box or organized papers we still need. The island is clear and I feel so much better about our house. Also, washed sheets for 5 beds.

  • HEidi S says:

    Love books, and would love to be the recipient of these.
    Tomorrow is my cleaning day!

  • Leah Spencer says:

    Despite having your book (SGTSM)… I feel like I am in constant survival mode these days. I was literally starting to reread your book on Friday when I decided to take a peek on my “napping” toddler… and found a room FULL of smeared poop. I cleaned for 3 hours. Then my husband cleaned for 2 hours. And then I cleaned for another 2 hours on Saturday. Saturday night my husband hurt his other shoulder and now is out of commission from doing any housework or childcare. My workload doubled and I just feel like I’m swimming very hard to just keep my nose above the water so I can breathe.

    So no, I don’t think I did any true housecleaning today. Just enough to keep me from drowning. Maybe the dryer will come this week…

  • Analisa says:

    I was working on some organizing/cleaning just now. I got on the computer to turn on some music and obviously got distracted…opps! I’m thankful to have happened upon this particular post of yours. It was just the push I needed to keep going!

  • Leah says:

    That looks like a great stack of books!

  • Krista says:

    I read your book from the library, but would love my own copy. I need to keep up with your Christmas clean up this year. Thanks for the posts to inspire.

  • Kaela McPherson says:

    Christmas sure is sneaking up this year! Today the kitchen got a deep cleaning, tomorrow on to the laundry 😉

  • Crystal says:

    I finally decorated my Christmas tree!

  • Jessie H says:

    We’re pacing to move. And we’re doing it the day after Christmas. I would LOVE that stack of goodies to dive into after we get settled.

  • Alison S. says:

    I actually got some christmas shopping done, took 3 boxes to goodwill and cleaned some around the house. It was a good day! 🙂

  • Julianna says:

    Great post!

  • kathleen says:

    I would love to win and read that stack of books!

  • Katelin Reagh says:

    Great job. Everything looks lovely!

  • Angela says:

    You are so inspiring! Thank you 🙂

  • Tammy says:

    Was planning on starting today, but will have to do that tomorrow.

  • Suzanne says:

    So inspiring. Love the minimalist look to your home. It’s what I’m striving for in my own home. 🙂 I worked on my bedroom but still have a ways to go.

  • Nikki M. says:

    Great job!! That motivates me to try harder! Thanks!

  • Jennifer says:

    We spent two whole days this weekend tidying our room because it has become a catchall for home project, extra toys, books, clothes to be sorted as our boys grow too fast and my husband and I have lost nearly 120 pounds combined, etc. So two hours sounds pretty good to me!

  • Pam says:

    We did a bit of straightening today before having to leave for a doctor’s appointment that ended up taking way longer than it should have. Tomorrow is another day – we’ll start earlier with less interruptions.

  • Jessica H says:

    Thank you for keeping it real. I did not clean at all today, I’m trying to pull myself away from ‘Reign over me’ to wash dishes and go to bed.

    I’d love to win that stack of books, your gratitude journal is on my wish list but I would read all of those. 🙂

  • Meagan Johnson says:

    Here’s my comment!

  • Becky says:

    Although I had the day off, I didn’t get to any cleaning today. But I did something even harder. I’m taking an online course for work and today I took the exam covering the hardest section of material. I spent yesterday and today reviewing and studying the last 3 weeks of material and tonight I took and aced the test! I’m not only going to count this as a win towards advancing my career by learning new skills, but also as frugal because if I get an “A” for the whole course, my employer will refund the tuition I paid (almost $2000!). So overall, a good use of a vacation day. 🙂

  • Meagan Johnson says:

    Here’s my comment! Hope I win

  • Miriam Palavicini says:

    It is so hard to get motivated to deep clean and get organized! 🙁
    On a positive note though, we did get the Christmas tree decorated, wich the kids have been wanting to do since last week

  • Lisa says:

    Boy do I need a clean-up challenge around here! Good to see what you got done after doing school.

  • Kristen says:

    I’d love to participate in this challenge but my newest baby is just six weeks so we are in survival mode. I did make both my bed and my sons bed and fold two loads of laundry so I have to count this day as a win anyway.

  • Kristen says:

    Could you share more about your sons blessing box? I’m interested in putting together and advent box for my two year old but really want to make it Jesus focused.

  • Cindy says:

    Sure hope I’m not too late to have a chance at that great stack of books! Love the blog!! Blessings to you and yours.

  • Jennifer says:

    Would love to read some of those books!

  • Emily Engle says:

    I cleaned some and made several important phone calls and…..CUT MY OWN HAIR! I didn’t want to spend $30 to have it cut. I think I did ok!

  • Kim says:

    I just stumbled onto your post and love your plans – just not sure how I can make it work with our brood of 8 children (including very curious 2 and 4 year olds and a 2 month old!). I’d love a chance to win your giveaway books! 🙂

  • Need A Nap2 says:

    I did dishes! 🙂 My kids are still sick and it seems nothing much is getting done.

  • kajal says:

    i would like to read these. pls share some more ideas..

  • Amara says:

    It was nice reading your article. Thank you for your inspirational post.

  • Brenda Deibel says:

    I made more of a mess, early Christmas with my sisters tomorrow and we are all making presents for each other, so I created a mess on my dining table. My daughter was excited to help 🙂

  • Money says:

    I would like to read these collections of books…

  • I love this post and the five days of cleaning. I cleaned almost all of my house today!

  • Megan says:

    Thank you for the inspiration! I need to tackle my closet!

  • Mia Jackson says:

    Cleaning all the mess out the house feels really great! 🙂

  • jennifer says:

    Cleaning is the happiest policy to live healthy life.

  • Kristin A. says:

    Great work on your room! Mine is in desperate need of attention and I do get bits and pieces done, but fail to finish.

  • Amanda says:

    I vacuumed the living room and dusted the side tables. Mopped the kitchen, halllway and bathroom. Also deep cleaned the bathroom. 2 loads of laundry. It all took about 3 hours but worth it all.

  • Becky {Milo & Oats} says:

    Now I’m not feeling so behind on this challenge:-) Conquering bedrooms today!

  • Meghan Bergunzi says:

    I wish I could say that I actually cleaned today, but with this terrible cold I have come down with I barely managed to straighten up, start the dishwasher and do the advent calendar with my two year old.

    I also want to tell you that I appreciate how transparent you are in your blog. It gives me motivation when I hear that you have days that you just throw on a hoodie and get stuff done, because sometimes that’s just what needs done.

    Hopefully tomorrow will be a more productive day for me.

    • Jo says:

      I’m so sorry you’re not feeling well! To encourage you, I did very little this weekend to just try to rest and recuperate… because I knew that pushing myself when I didn’t feel well would probably only prolong the sickness! Two days of resting really made a big difference!

      I hope you start feeling well soon!

  • Lori says:

    I want to get in on this challenge but I will not be able to start until Thursday. My house is in desperate need of a deep cleaning.

  • connie says:

    Cleaned out most of the Christmas bins while we put together our simple Christmas decor…the result was a bag headed to the Goodwill of Christmas items that we are ready to move along…and a home that simply celebrates the Christmas Season…

  • Adia Williamson says:

    I will definitely make getting my house in order(especially my room) before Christmas. Hopefully these little ones (3yrs and 6 mos) will cooperate!

  • Alexis says:

    This post motivated me to get some deep cleaning done tomorrow! Baby #2 will be here in just a few weeks and I want to be ready (or as ready as you can be for a new baby)! I would love
    those books too for some downtime before little one arrives 🙂

  • Danielle says:

    Thanks for sharing . While I wanted to join in yesterday in the bedroom challenge, I get overwhelmed so quickly lately and I decided to take a nap instead. Your post here inspired me and I’m hoping to Go in and Get it done Today!! It is however a huge battle between the desire to see it complete and the actual takes all I have not to throw the covers over my head. If you think of it send lots of prayers up for me. 🙂 The books look great! Alot of them have been on my list, just not in a posotion to be able to purchase right now. They will be a huge blessing to whoever recieves them. And thanks again for blessing me this morning by sharing a slice of your life with us.

  • Melissa says:

    I am a pack rat, but am trying to work on that, so I am amazed that you found so much to give away so “soon” after your last de cluttering challenge! 🙂

  • Cindy says:

    I feel inspired to get started cleaning own house! I would love to win the books. Not sure whether I would be able to though, as I’m from South Africa….

  • Donna Tignor says:

    So impressed at how organized and productive your day is. I hope I am still inspired in the morning and can get started.

  • Su says:

    Today I cleaned and vacuum out kitchen cabinets. I was surprised how many crumbs, etc fall into them. ugh

  • Connie says:

    I love your cleaning ideas, and those books sure would come in handy during all these late nights with a 9 week old. 🙂

  • Terry C says:

    This post has motivated me to get my cleaning done. I did clean my vent in the bathroom. So I felt good about that and my ceiling fans, dusting the blades. Would love those books too, need some reading in between cleaning 🙂

  • Karen A says:

    Oh, I need to work on the same projects! But today was spent working on my husband’s resume as we hope and pray for a better situation for him.

  • Laurika says:

    Thank you Crystal I have been slow on cleaning because its summer in south Africa and realy hot cleaned out my kitchen and it felt great would so love those books

  • Kimberly McBride says:

    I loved this post! Starting the challenge tomorrow.

  • Jennifer says:

    Doesn’t it make you feel so good to accomplish something like that? Looks great!

  • Trish S says:

    I would love to win these books!!!

    Our bed doesn’t get made every morning either. You have inspired me to get our bedroom closet cleaned out! It is beyond cluttered!

  • Lisa says:

    I am always looking for books to read!

  • Anna says:

    I have been using the checklist from your original cleaning list, I keep it in my home notebook. Thanks for all you do and for keeping it REAL!

  • Rachel Worley says:

    Sounds like a full day! We are in full newborn mode at my house and the whole place could use organization!!

  • Rox Anne says:

    Looks great!!

  • Amy says:

    We cleaned the living room so that we could put up our Christmas tree. 🙂

  • Amanda says:

    I need to get to work on the clutter in my bedroom, too! I would love to win the books!

  • MaryBeth says:

    Thank you for keeping it real & sharing part of your life with your readers. So many times, bloggers only share the “good” things and make the rest of us struggling through the weeds feel like we’re failing since we didn’t get through everything on our to do list.
    I am really impressed by what you are able to accomplish, including homeschooling your children — and your clean kitchen counters too!

  • Kayla says:

    So glad you’re doing this challenge. Love the accountability factor. We’ve been able to get two boxes of stuff so far for donating. It feels great! Less clutter, always feel good.

  • Pamela Frohn says:

    Nice work! I don’t think I’ll get my whole house clean before Christmas, but you’ve inspired me to tidy up!

  • Dara says:

    Battling sickness here so no cleaning got done today.

  • Lori says:

    I so needed to read this!!! I need to clean my house and get into a routine during what feels like a ver chaotic season. Thank you!

  • Vanesa says:

    i just had a baby so instead of feeling glum about my current body I am cleaning out my closet. Getting rid of sizes I haven’t seen in a decade, storing a size I was before pregnancy, and keeping current size/what actually fits/able to nurse in based upon how the clothes make me feel. I want my clothes to make me feel amazing and be flattering not just a means to an end. So far, have 3 trash bags filled for donation-I always give to local women’s shelter. One big box for storage which can still be widdled down. Good times, right.

  • Lauren Burkey says:

    love it!

  • Renee says:

    Love this challenge! You inspired me to get my master bedroom REALLY clean & decluttered yesterday! Thanks for helping get me started!

  • Darcie Jackson says:

    I too try to make the bed most days but doesn’t always happen. I had a sick kid so deep cleaning didn’t happen but I’m hoping today will be more productive!

  • Katie says:

    I would love to win the books. I love to read but don’t get to the library very often.

  • Lauren says:

    My plan was to do a quick-clean of the whole house so I could start de cluttering and organizing the rest of the week. But, I felt tired and sick all day so I spent most of the day on the couch watching cartoons with my 1 year old and 4 year old!

  • Denise says:

    I work 10 hours yesterday, then sat at Jr. High basketball games for over 2 hours, so absolutely NO cleaning got done yesterday. Hoping for a better day today!!

  • Sara says:

    Your closet and room look great! You have inspired me to organize my closet since it is very cluttered right now!

  • Dee maurer says:

    The books look amazing! I finally cleared my laundry room of random stuff that ends up there because it has no where else to go!

  • heidi says:

    I got my first smart phone a few months ago and have been getting on fb WAY too often, so… No fb for me between 7a.m. And 2 pm (I’m a sahm who homeschools). That said, I’m a day behind on the challenge and am looking forward to it. Would love the books

  • heidi says:

    I got my first smart phone a few months ago and have been getting on fb WAY too often, so… No fb for me between 7a.m. And 2 pm (I’m a sahm who homeschools). That said, I’m a day behind on the challenge and am looking forward to it. Would love the books

  • Raina says:

    I would love to win those books. I love decluttering! I wish you

  • Beth says:

    I’d love to win the stack of books!

  • Sarah T. says:

    So impressed with the clean out. A big donate box always makes me happy! I need to go through my stuff in a serious way too!

  • Heather Ellis says:

    Oh how I love a clean house but with 5 kids it does not last long;)

  • Shannon says:

    Sick kiddos and mommy so just regular cleaning up for today! I would love to get these for Christmas! Have a blessed day!

  • Pam says:

    Did not do any major cleaning today but did get some things done for Christmas. 🙂

  • Sarah says:

    What a great stack of books. Also, a great idea to start with your own room. Whenever we’re expecting guests our room is the last to get cleaned because they won’t be in there. However, two or three guests later and our room will be filled with piles to be sorted “later “. Not exactly a recipe for a peaceful haven!

  • Stacey says:

    Looks great! We are currently getting our house ready to go on the market so I am finding myself going through every nook and cranny of this house!

  • Amy S says:

    Your posts always make me smile. Thanks

  • Toni says:

    I need to clean out my closet too!

  • Karen says:

    I live in a little house with 4 young kids. You might think that it would be easy to keep a little house clean, but with 4 kids constantly making messes and not fully cleaning up after themselves yet, it’s not. But I’m working on training them in this area and so hopefully some day soon I’ll be able to get ahead of them and finally have the whole house clean at one time.

    • Jo says:

      I honestly think little houses are a LOT harder when there are young children in them… because there’s really not many places for the mess to go! Keep teaching them a strong work ethic, though, and it will pay off as they grow older!

  • Melissa says:

    Looks great- way to go! 🙂

  • Betsy says:

    For the past few months, I have tried to be diligent about making my bed each morning, and I have to say it is a habit that I really enjoy. I would love to win this stack of books, as I am an avid reader and love to read before bed!

  • Cayla says:

    Cleaning is one of my favorite things to do & I’m so blessed to have a couple houses I get to clean each week. Such a satisfying feeling going into a dirty house and leaving it clean a few hours later!

  • Christi says:

    This challenge is just what I need to get my house cleaned before Christmas! Thank you….it is also encouraging to see that every one else’s plans go by the way side in a normal homeschool day too! Thanks for being transparent….and Merry Christmas to you all!

  • Lynda Skinner says:

    I have been doing some cleaning too. It always takes longer than I think too but then I have a pile to throw away or give away. Very satisfying!

  • Lora says:

    Thank you for a chance of winning the books! I’m fortunate to have “Say Goodbye to Survival Mode” on my kindle. A paper copy would be the perfect gift for a friend. My family would appreciate the “Unwrapping the Greatest Gift” devotionals. I’d enjoy reading the other books, especially “Manage Your Day-to-Day” and “Choose Gratitude,” in 2015.

  • Jen says:

    I went to work, exercised, went to a doctor’s appointment, made dinner, then went jeans shopping. (I hate jeans shopping, I think it may be worse than bathing suit shopping.) I just moved into my new apartment three weeks ago, so there’s no deep cleaning to be done yet. Also, I’m single, spend little time at home (Austin’s too much fun to be a homebody), have borderline OCD tendencies (the bed always gets made as soon as I get out of it), and have no pets, so there’s never a lot of cleaning to be done anyway.

  • Tina says:

    Your bedroom and closet look huge! I wouldn’t mind winning the books….:)

  • Anna says:

    I washed all of the bedding. My kids have been sick and that’s about as ‘clean’ as I got the rooms.

  • Jennifer says:

    I can’t leave my room without making my bed! I feel dirty otherwise.

  • Victoria says:

    I so did not get done the cleaning I wanted to and I set the bar much lower than you. I was doing well at lunch time. Got all my laundry put away. Had my daughter put her too small jeans in the pile for goodwill. Threw out some old gym shirts of mine. Then….things went down hill. I had a list of errands to do before I could get back to cleaning. Went to my SUV and it would not start. Walked half way to the hospital where my husband works to pick up his truck (a mile away from where we live) and remembered I didn’t have his spare keys (I can’t get to his department easily so I couldn’t grab his). Walked back home got the spare keys and back to get his truck. For some reason the spare keys set off his alarm, so I had to put up with people staring at me as I figured out how to turn it off. Each errand just got worse, line ups, stores not having items I wanted. By the time I got home, I put my feet up with a cup of herbal tea and did a few light computer tasks and never did get back to cleaning.

  • Lori C says:

    We had a birthday party at our house yesterday so our bedroom is actually the only room that didn’t get cleaned, but you have inspired me to clean it. Our room tends to become the catch all during the holidays.

  • Amy says:

    I was just thinking yesterday how nice it would be to give my house a good cleaning before Christmas. I’m not sure if it will happen with a new baby and homeschooling and a busy pastoring husband. I will get overwhelmed and miss Jesus this Christmas if I stress over it too much, and pull my family along with me. But, I love your seeing your goals and your perseverance and discipline! It encourages me to make my own and tackle the things I can…and I know in another season my house will get the attention it needs. By the way, have you ever seen or heard Tim Hawkins’ song about yoga pants? It’s hillarious. You should check it out. ☺️

  • Jennifer Rigby says:

    Looks like you had a great day with a lot done!

  • AB says:

    Yesterday was a beautiful 50 degree in Omaha, NE so instead of tackling the inside I cleaned the yard and garage. It felt great to get up the last of the fallen leaves, especially those that had blown into the garage.

  • Betsy says:

    I would love to read these books!

  • Annie says:

    Wow! I would love to win those books!

  • Sheila Eaton says:

    Need to clean our closet also might have to wait until I get the presents wrapped. All things Christmas is in there. Love your blog!

  • jeannie says:

    I didn’t get too much cleaning done since I had to work outside of the home today,but I did get a load of towels washed and the kitchen cleaned.

  • Christi says:

    Thanks for the extra motivation!!

  • Diana M. says:

    Thank you for being so honest. I’m glad to know that I’m not the only one who feels that there aren’t enough hours in the day. I hadn’t even heard of the Clean Your House for Christmas Challenge. I’m going to try it. Thanks for the opportunity to win books. Happy Holidays!

  • Corri says:

    You just provided some much needed motivation me. Thank you!

  • Kaylee says:

    I took care of a stack of papers that I needed to go through during nap time. I hope to work on my bedroom today.

  • Melinda says:

    I need to deep clean so much! I would love a closet for my things! Ours is about 32″ wide with one rod. I hang my husband’s things in there since he has all his work clothes. Mine go in 2 bottom drawers of our dresser. What doesn’t fit there stays folded on a nightstand. I’m hoping to add a 2nd rod in the closet so I have hanging space, too! Your room and closet looks great!!

  • Carol Gifford says:

    I follow your web site daily, and enjoy it very much. These books would be a great gift1 I started a cleaning project in my kitchen wiping down the oak cabinets to clean the dust that has collected. Our small group from church meets at our house this week. Great week to do some extra cleaning.

  • Cinde says:

    Would love the books! I struggle with getting overwhelmed by my junk 🙁

  • Melissa says:

    We are calling this the baby challenge as baby #5 is to arrive in 1 week or less. So in my exhausted but want everything in place before baby and Christmas arrive state I didn’t get started on Monday but did make a plan for how to divide things up for the days I will be home this next week. Hoping today will be a success! Would love to add these books to my reading list for the coming year! Thank you for sharing your success!

  • Hanneke says:

    i would love to win those books

  • Kelly says:

    Great job, Crystal!

    I am overdue on gutting the house before Christmas, but I’m trying not to let it keep me from socialuzing. I just had a friend over yesterday in my very messy house, and I never apologized for it! That may be a first for me 🙂

  • melanie king says:

    You inspire me! I did a quick clean in the afternoon, but my “quick clean” is never as quick as yours. 🙂
    I would LOVE that stack of books. 🙂 I’ve been eyeing some of them for awhile!

  • Rachel says:

    Great job!!! I LOVE getting rid of stuff, too! 🙂

  • Beth S. says:

    Great work! I love straightening things out. I have some cupboards that are dying to be gone through. Now to find the time!

  • Melissa says:

    this has inspired me to tackle my room today!!!

  • Mandy says:

    This is inspiring. I have been putting off “the” bedroom! Maybe I will tackle it today:)

  • Erin verhines says:

    Oh! I could really use those books! I’m glad you cleaned, too! 🙂

  • Laura in NC says:

    I would love to win these books! I enjoy the challenge post, too.

  • Crissie says:

    Great work! These are great books and I would be so glad to receive them!

  • Melissa D says:

    I only kept up with regular cleaning today. Though my girls’ room is atrocious.

  • sWhitney says:

    Great job! I’ve been avoiding tackling my bedroom for a while. With finals week this week I decided to keep things simple and tidied up the bathroom instead.

  • Deana says:

    I admire your desire to get your house clean before Christmas. I seriously lack the motivation to do much of anything some days! Would love to win the books though!

  • Jerrianne says:

    Love your pile of books for your time with the Lord, it looks a lot like mine. Working on cleaning both my physical home and my heart.

  • Rhonda Rouse says:

    I’m not sure where all the stuff in my house is from. I decluttered a lot this summer….and going through and getting rid of more now, you wouldn’t think I got rid of anything prior. Luckily, a friend has an online consignment site where I’ve sold many items. They sell online for much more than I would get at a yardsale (even after her percentage), and she does all the work.

  • Rachel says:

    No cleaning yesterday. 🙁 After a full day working, running kids to and from school, making dinner, getting everyone dressed and to the youngest kid’s Christnas program; I was pooped. Bed was partially made and we had a HUGE toy clean out this weekend and I got those boxes taken away yesterday, so that counts, right?

  • Melissa says:

    I love how real you are, how willing to show not only those after pics, but the before ones as well. Living in the fishbowl is not easy (I know!), especially with children. May Today be filled with grace to continue to live and love honestly, both to your young children, and those of us privileged to watch from a distance. 🙂

  • Maura Rawlette says:

    Never watched that Moms Night Out. Just saw it on today when looking for ideas for us moms.

  • Misty N. says:

    Would love to win the stack of books.

  • Lee Privette says:

    You inspired me. I’ll try to get the closets cleaned in the next few days.

  • MILISSA says:

    Pick me pick me! I love how you show that even minimalists have to work to keep things clean. In my world of loved ones, I’m a minimalist. (I know I still have too much & could get rid of some things.) every time I talk about cleaning, organizing, or getting rid of things, my loved ones make jokes like “what is there to clean.” Lol. Just goes to show you…this is something you always have to stay on top of. 🙂

  • katie says:

    What a transformation. Very inspiring!

  • Katie McLemore says:

    Love the challenge! And would love to win the books!

  • Andrea says:

    Congrats on getting so much accomplished! Having a neat and clutter-free space makes all the difference in the world, especially when you work from home!

  • Tracy says:

    I love how deep cleaning something always makes me feel like I’ve accomplished so much!

  • Christine B says:

    Maybe Winter cleaning is the new Spring cleaning? Have a great day! 🙂

  • Jessica says:

    Looks like a great stack of books! 🙂

  • Allison says:

    I managed to get my kitchen counter cleaned today. I’m still working on organization!

  • Emily says:

    Thanks for doing another challenge! My hubby is traveling a few days this week so my goal is to keep the kids happy and do big clean up before he gets home.

  • Katie says:

    I function so much better when things have been cleaned and organized!

  • MILISSA says:

    Pick me pick me! I love how you show that even minimalists must stay on top of cleaning & organizing. In my circle of loved ones, I’m the minimalist. (But truthfully, I know I still have things that need to be organized, donated, etc.) they always joke when I comment about cleaning/organizing…”what is there to clean?” Just goes to show you, this is an ongoing project for everyone. 🙂

  • Stephanie says:

    I loved this challenge, even though it also took me way longer than I had anticipated. We have three giant bags of stuff to donate now!

  • Katherine says:

    We just moved last week so no deep cleaning but I’m continuing to declutter as I unpack.

  • Annie says:

    I would love those books!

  • Lori says:

    There is no greater feeling than a freshly cleaned & organized room! I also have to say I appreciate you keeping it real- your comment about throwing on a sweatshirt & putting your hair up after your workout is something I can occasionally relate to. Just depends on the day, but sometimes it makes more sense to finish the “dirty” jobs before heading for the shower. I know that cleaning (especially deep cleaning sessions where you are really kicking up the dust…from the fanblades…etc.) makes me feel like I need a shower all over again, so why not do that job before getting cleaned up? Just makes sense!

  • Dinah says:

    I need to get rid of a bunch of stuff in my bedroom closet. It would make cleaning the room so much easier.

  • Jacqueline says:

    Yesterday I cleaned my kitchen. I’ve been sick for days but the kitchen HAD to be cleaned, it was awful. It took my a long time. I would clean, sit, clean ,sit. It made me appreciate the days when I’m feeling so much more.

  • Beth G. says:

    Thank you for helping me to get motivated! We just moved into a new home two weeks ago, and I’ve been feeling overwhelmed. This series is JUST what I’ve needed. Thank you 🙂

  • Anna says:

    Cleaning day is today at our house! I’m hoping to get the office under control!

  • Amanda says:

    Looks great! Having a clean bedroom puts me in a good mood and helps me sleep better. Might have to work on the closet today. 🙂

  • Christina says:

    I love your realness and authenticity! Yes, I struggle to make our bed every day too. Honestly, when I read your first post about this project yesterday, I thought “Wow, she’s good. There’s no way I could get that deep cleaning done in my bedrooms before lunch and still get homeschooling done too.” Thanks for letting us know the results! 🙂 Now I’m inspired to try it too. Those look like some great books!

  • Amanda says:

    I would love to win this! I especially want to see Mom’s Night Out! 🙂 Congrats on the deep cleaning… I just did that last week! And you’re right, it feels so much better when you are finally done!

  • Kellie says:

    I think this just may of pushed me to work towards a cleaner house this season! Since adding another little boy to the family life has become hectic!

  • Holly says:

    Thank you for keeping things real. This Challenge has set off a 10 cleaning challenge in my MOPS group. We found we all have difficulty with getting and keeping the house cleaned and the support and encouragement of other moms is motivating. Thank you for the blog and igniting an amazing conversation/ support system within our group!

  • Robin Y says:

    Crystal, I love it when you do these little challenges! I couldn’t start yesterday, but I’ll be following a day behind you. Thanks so much for the encouragement to live a disciplined and fulfilling life!

  • Kathy McPhillips says:

    I have been meaning to clean and organize my bedroom closet for a while. When I got home from work last night my closet was empty because the workers insulating our home needed to get into it to work. The Lord must of knew I needed some extra motivation to get it done.

  • Alinda says:

    Wow just the motivation I need for tackling my messy room!

  • Sarah says:

    First, can I make you feel better by saying that I have NEVER dusted the ceiling fan in my bedroom….and we have lived here for 9 years!! YIKES!! I’m a little bit afraid of doing it now. I need one of those nifty dusters that you have. As for the books….three of them are currently on my wish list….the two by you and Ann Voskamp. Great giveaway and beautiful room.

  • Amy says:

    We had friends over last night, which is always a great motivator to get things clean. Luckily, when we have company, my husband always pitches in and does big jobs I hate, like running the vacuum and cleaning the bathroomS!

  • lisa says:

    I know how you feel. Last week I cleaned out my bedroom closet also, and the feeling of accomplishment is so wonderful. I’m hoping to keep it looking that me way this time next year.

  • Faith Williams says:

    This is inspiring and 5 days keeps it from being overwhelming. The goal of a comfortable and enjoyable Christmas is very worthy!

  • Sara says:

    Meant to clean up kitchen counter but didn’t get to it. Not feeling well at all and neither is newborn! Would love the books!!! 🙂

  • Andrea says:

    I tackled all the paperwork that’s been in a box for a month or two, biggest bonus all our tax information is ready to go for the new year. Feeling accomplished!

  • Kara Fyffe says:

    Your post inspired me to go through the “catch-all” spare bedroom last night, instead of watching mindless TV. Thank you. That room desperately needed my attention!

  • Jennifer says:

    I’m always so encouraged and motivated by your blog! Thanks for keeping it real for all of us!

  • Liz Robertson says:

    yay books for Christmas! If yours needed cleaning mine needs a federal disaster declared ha ha.

  • Cindy Fox says:

    Thanks for keep it real for your readers!

  • Erin says:

    Your before and after pics are motivating! Whenever I clean out a closet, I keep opening it just to view the organized beauty inside, haha!

  • Kara says:

    That looks like a fun stack of books!

  • Andrea says:

    I always love your book selections!

  • Angela says:

    Thanks for the encouragement! My husband and I are also trying to clean out and organize our house. We have succeeded in creating a bigger mess when we begin yet find the results to be so rewarding and fruitful. There is such satisfaction in knowing where everything is and that you are not wasting time, energy, and money using what you have. Keep up the great work!

  • Erin says:

    Cleaning didn’t go today, but I enjoyed reading about yours. Would love to win that stack of books.

  • Kris says:

    I have made a long list of cleaning/decluttering/organizing chores to do by the end of the year. It’s about time that I did it! I had to work Monday so didn’t clean, but I am off the next 2 days and will tackle the list then. It feels so good to have a clean, organized home!

  • Jenny says:

    I was glad that we started with bedrooms because it was much quicker for me. Your post made me realize I should have dusted the fan blades though– off to do that and then I’m putting away a load of laundry this morning and looking forward to today’s challenge.

  • Melissa says:

    Looks like a lot of work, but the room looks so much fresher! I’d love to win the stack of books. Looks like some good reads there. 🙂

  • Laura says:

    Looks great! I need a good sweep of my closet.

  • Valerie says:

    Great job! I’ll be working on bedrooms today! Hopefully they go as well as yours did.

  • Danielle Dyball says:

    I would love this stack of books. Several of these are on my reading list. I always love following along with your cleaning challenges.

  • Alisha says:

    I love reading your blog! My bedroom and closet are exactly what I need to tackle today. I have so much I need to get rid of and bless other people with. I love the freedom you get when you clear out your space and can actually keep it clean so much easier.

  • Mary says:

    I am impressed and inspired. If I posted a pic of my closet and bedroom, you would feel your before shot was already clean. I have some work to do.

  • Julie says:

    Your room looks great, good job! I see one of your journals in that stack, that would be wonderful to get !

  • kasey says:

    you did a great job, don’t know how you do it all!!

  • Corey Lesko says:

    Saving this for next week! Crazy week at work. Really looking forward to this!

  • Tracy says:

    Nice job!! I know how hard it is to get things done after a busy day of working AND homeschooling! Today my hubby and I are tackling the garage!! Pray for me and I’ll pray for you! 😉

  • Mandy Grogan says:

    I’m just finding this post today so I will be a day behind but I’m looking forward to this! We (husband, 2 kids and my 30 week pregnant self) are currently living with my patents while we finish up building our house. Needless to say, things get easily cluttered when you live out of a bedroom!

  • MK says:

    No cleaning happened on our busy, out-and-about, errand-running Monday…but this post definitely serves as a kick in the heinie when I think of the love *my* bedroom could use–yipes!

  • bberg says:

    I worked all day them back to the office for an evening meeting. But, when I finally got home at 8 i cleaned off my desk in the bedroom. Several great books in the stack. I see one of your journals in that stack, that would bea blessing to receive !

  • Amber says:

    Did some speed cleaning and Christmas decorating yesterday before dear friends came over. Hosting company is always good motivation!

  • Rachel says:

    Your deep clean looks good! Thanks for the opportunity to win the books 🙂

  • Jasie says:

    Love your post! I need to start this week and clean one room each day hopefully until I’m done 🙂 thanks for the inspiration!

  • Daniel thompson says:

    Wow how fun to read some of the books and be able to give some as gifts!

  • Amie Wilson says:

    Love to see other people doing deep cleaning before Christmas. My mom always had me do this to my room growing up and now I do my house every year.

  • Joni says:

    This has motivated me to get some cleaning done.

  • Katy says:

    I appreciate that you show your real life… Dishes in the sink, unpacked suitcase, unmade bed. It encourages me to know I’m not the only one out there who does this. Thanks!

  • Dana S says:

    Isn’t it a wonderful feeling to have accomplished a task and in the process have items to donate so someone else can benefit and part of your home is clean too! A clean home keeps my stress level down.

  • Joye Rinker says:

    I have been reading your blog for YEARS! I love your site. It’s the first place I go every morning when I log on to my computer. Have a Merry Christmas!

  • Charity says:

    Wow! Looks great!

  • Jo Ballinger says:

    Looking good. Now if I could only get my own done as well…..

  • Karen says:

    Thank you for keeping it real and for your encouragement. I am amazed at how willing you are to share your experiences yet how validating it is for me and the rest of your readers. I have referenced your posts in my mind several different days. Thanks for all you do and share~

  • Miranda Cooper says:

    I’m afraid it would take me more than two hours to get my bedroom looking that nice! More like two weeks! Yikes!

  • Deana says:

    Yes I did clean! And I was exhausted! My space still doesn’t look as good as yours-I really admire your minimalism!

  • Rebecca Scott says:

    Good job on the deep clean – the finished product looks great! I would love to win the books : )

  • Tara H says:

    Everything looks great! I’m still amazed at how clean/clear your kitchen counters are! 😉 We really want to see that dinosaur dvd with Buddy Davis too! We went to the Creation Museum this past summer and loved it!

    • Tara H says:

      I forgot to say that I love that you’re still working on the habit of making your bed! Me too!! My husband doesn’t care if it’s made or not…I’m not sure if that helps or hinders my progress though! Ha! 🙂

  • Tumay Harding says:

    I am inspired from your work yesterday and will be tackling my bedroom today. I seem to always leave my bedroom for last and clean the kids first. Not today! Happy Mom, happy family!

  • Rachel says:

    Great job! Love the kids helping you organize your jewelry. My son always finds some neat treasures when he helps me clean. 🙂

  • Linda Anderson says:

    Good for you! You’ve inspired me to get moving!

  • Denise Terry says:

    Your bedroom/closet looks great. What a stress release this is! Great idea to clean/de-clutter right before the holidays so you can enjoy them more.

  • JB says:

    Our bedroom is always the last room to get a thorough cleaning, and it makes such a different when it’s neat and tidy! Good job!

  • Kelli says:

    I LOVE finding stuff to drop off at Goodwill. Less clutter and someone else benefits from my stuff… it’s a win-win! Thanks for chance to win those books.. looks like a great stack.

  • Jodi says:

    Congrats! You have inspired me to clean my closet!

  • Nikki says:

    I need to start on this challenge tonight! My house has definitely been neglected the last few weeks. I would love to win those books!

  • Carrie Koppin says:

    Thank you! A yoga pants day is a special treat around here- enjoy it! 😉

  • Kelly Hess says:

    Oh I so want to see Mom’s Night Out!

  • Sarah says:

    Great job of getting this accomplished even if it was later than you had planned. 🙂 I have many places around the house that could REALLY use a cleaning like this! I’ve just been too busy these last few months trying to get all of my Christmas orders filled that things are piling up like crazy! Maybe AFTER Christmas I can get them straightened up again. 🙂

  • Rachel says:

    I cleaned a bathroom today which is huge for me because it is my least favorite cleaning job! And I washed all the bedding too. My five and three year old make it a little difficult to accomplish much these days.

  • angie says:

    I would love to win the books!

  • Laura V. says:

    Looks great! I need to get to work on my room, especially my bedroom closet. This post inspires me to get to work on that!

  • Jessica says:

    You had a busy day! You are so inspiring and I love that you are so real on your blog. I’m going to be a day behind you on cleaning – but Yeah I’m In!

  • jen keith says:

    You’ve inspired me to tackle that one closet I’ve been ignoring…thanks!

  • Sue says:

    Thank you for the inspiration! Just starting sometimes is the hardest part!

  • Lana says:

    I would love to win the books and be able to share them with some others! We got quite a bit of work done on Christmas gifts last night. They are all wrapped and under the tree or packed in a box and ready to travel. That was a big accomplishment. Unfortunately we left a tub of wrapping stuff in the middle of the dining room floor and I fell over it in the dark this AM. UGH!

  • sarah says:

    No cleaning today… after getting home from work and making dinner I only had enough energy to work on dealing with Christmas decorations that were stacked in the kitchen and living room. Thankfully I had already started on both the master and guest bedroom on the weekend and only have a few odds and ends left to tackle in those rooms.

  • Susan in St. Louis says:

    Whew! That was a lot going on! And I noticed that your kitchen has the same granite as our new house…apparently it’s a popular pattern/color!

    Rather than doing a deep cleaning, I’m working on unpacking and organizing, as our family of 6 just moved a month ago into a house twice the size of our little starter home. It’s been a process, and of course taking all the longer because regular life with four littles is still in full-swing, but we are loving the increased space (and 2+ acres!). 🙂

    And I must say – I LOVE pajama days, so no criticism from me! 😉

  • JoAnn says:

    Isn’t it great to see progress? I just thoroughly cleaned our house because we had out-of-town guests staying with us over Thanksgiving. I, too, cleaned my fan blades. Boy, were they D-I-R-T-Y!! Love that you’re gifting items from your cleaning endeavor.

  • Dannielle says:

    Our bedroom was needed for a “at the last minute” overnight guest, so it got a good surface clean and gave me a good urge for a deep clean. Love finding things for Goodwill ~ such a freeing feeling!

  • Mallory Hall says:

    I’m a new reader and I really appreciate how real your blog is! I only got dressed yesterday because of your morning list post otherwise I would have been in PJs all day. As for cleaning I got my son’s room and my room finished!! We don’t have closets so it’s prepretty easy. By the time I finished though, there was really no point in making the bed 😉

  • Lisa E says:

    I love the sense of accomplishment that comes from organizing and deep cleaning. I have found that if you work left to right and “edit” your stuff, you tend not to bounce around and stuff doesn’t get skipped over that you have to “get to later”.

  • Sherri says:

    Worked on cleaning the kitchen and catching up on laundry.

  • Joan says:

    I didn’t work on my “office,” other than vacuuming, but I did 2 loads of laundry after work outside the home.

  • Kathryne says:

    So many fun books in that stack! A few of them are on my wish list, so this would be a fun one to win. Great job cleaning up!

  • Debbie says:

    Ann Voskamp and a gratitude journal?!?!? I this stack. I guess I need to clean something today.

  • Nancy Tiber says:

    My closet sure needs a good clean out

  • Tanna W says:

    I’ve had two grand babies born, surgery and a dry socket from a wisdom tooth so I’m thrilled to get the laundry room/mud room cleaned and my bathroom scrubbed! Well, thrilled except now I’m in pain again. Boo!

  • Jennifer Chandler says:

    You have motivated me to get my house clean, too! I was planning on doing it before putting up all the Christmas decorations, but nope, that didn’t happen. I think I will blog about it, too, for accountability, on my very new blog. That’s a goal for 2015…to build my blog! 🙂

  • Brenda says:

    Thanks for the honest posts.

  • Amy K says:

    I’d love to win the books 🙂

  • kristin cael says:

    Thanks for the inspiration! Love your posts! : )

  • tiffany says:

    I tackled my boys room, the toy room and the kids bathroom last night! It was so nice to wake up to part of the house clean! Thanks Crystal!

  • Julie says:

    I would love to win this stack of books, particularly Choose Gratitude. I work 40 hours per week, so my tip is more related to my job. On Monday morning, I collected no longer used office supplies (index cards and metal dividers) and put them in storage. In the spring every year, the university where I work has an office supplies swap. I plan to take these items to the swap and exchange them for supplies that I need.

  • Kate says:

    I loved your post. This inspires me to clean my house. Thank you!!

  • Tracy M says:

    Thankfully, I have a pretty full week of work this week. Do my day of cleaning was between bites and baths and basketball practice, but I got the basics done.

  • Angela R says:

    No deep cleaning but lots of surface cleaning

  • Carrie says:

    I cleaned out my closet today too!!

  • Beth says:

    Well, my cleaning wasn’t as extensive, but I did clear out some pajamas from my son’s drawers that are too small. He’s getting a new (hand-me-down) dresser from my parent soon and so I wanted to clear out the stuff that doesn’t fit before they arrive. I’ve had my eye on the Ann Voskamp book and would love the others as well. Thanks!

  • Patti says:

    Oh what a blessing it would be to receive those books! I would love to win 🙂

  • annie says:

    2 loves in this post…

    love reading how you and Jesse work at being a team. thank you for sharing.

    love how you lit a candle after completing a big task. simple pleasures.

    • Jo says:

      I love candles! And you’re right, it’s often those little things that can add up to a big difference!

  • Kim Gibson says:

    You impress me with all you can do in a day and I love how you keep it real by showing a little clutter and unmade bed, too! Keeps me from feeling overwhelmed! Thanks!

  • Jaime says:

    Looks like a lot of really great reads in the stack! Would love Ann Voskamp’s book for the holidays!

  • Ashleigh says:

    Looks great! You’re motivating me. And I want to win! 🙂

  • Jennifer P says:

    We are in constant cleaning mode around here. With 5 little ones, one on the way and Christmas guests in a few weeks…you can imagine from there!! Would love to win this amazing stack of goodies!

  • anne says:

    Didn’t deep clean, but got some laundry done and plan on working on a bedroom today!

  • sarah l says:

    What a busy day! Good job!

  • Rachel Warner says:

    I’d love to win those books!

  • Joy says:

    I did not clean my bedroom today. I thought about it, but I couldn’t seem to pull myself away from the book “eight twenty eight”. Tonight?

  • Jamie says:

    Mercy! I need to get my mess together ASAP! I’m going to give this challenge a try. 🙂
    Thanks, for the positive motivation. You’re work is such a blessing to me.

  • Catherine says:

    I didn’t get as much cleaning done as I would have liked, as I just had surgery last week and I’m supposed to limit exertion or lifting. However, I was able to work on packing up the clothes my three year old has grown out of for her baby cousin to wear someday! Today I’m going to tackle the overgrown hanging files in our kitchen organizer. Thanks for the motivation, Crystal!

  • Angie says:

    great giveaway!

  • Mary Franks says:

    I got the laundry folded and ready for kids to put away and got things ready for our youngest son’s bday. (He turned 10 yesterday.)
    I would love to win that great stack of stuff!

  • Becky F says:

    Nice work! I would love a stack of hand-me-down books 🙂

  • Kelly S says:

    I jumped in! I got linens washed, clothes folded and put away, and de cluttered. And then life interrupted. But, I am going to tackle it again today. The promise of a clean house is too appealing!

  • Kimberly says:

    Great job! Cleaning and organizing can take a while, but it’s so worth it in the end!!!

  • Kimmie says:

    Great job Crystal:-) I’m going to work on my bedroom and closet this morning!!!!:)

  • Kim says:

    We did a family clean up of our living room, dining room and kitchen. There is nothing like having people over to motivate me to clean!
    I would love to win this stack of books!

  • April says:

    Oh our bedroom could use some love! It’s usually the room that gets the door closed when people come over. 😉

  • Christina says:

    The Greatest Gift! Swoon! It’s on my “watch” list to have ready for next year (since we’ve obviously missed the boat on it this year!).

    I’m following your five-day cleaning challenge, and am going to follow in your footsteps, starting next week.

    We are SO FULL of the Christmas spirit around here – we pray many blessings for you and your ministries here and at home with that sweet family!

  • Meagan says:

    I have fallen back into my bad habit of dumping my clothes and shoes at the foot of our bed rather than putting everything away. My husband lovingly calls it my “closet vomit”. Well, I picked up that entire pile and the master bedroom is now clean. It took a whopping 20 minutes- why do I let it get to that point??

  • Cathy says:

    It is such a great feeling to accomplish some tasks I have needed to do for a while. Sunday and Monday cleaned out the closet and attic and got some things ready to donate to others in need. It brings me joy both in getting rid of things I no longer need but may help another in their life. Thank you for your inspirational posts.

  • Tanya C. says:

    Great job still tackling the cleaning even after 5:30. At that point I would have waved the white flag!

  • Mary says:

    I have been wanting to read Ann Voskamp’s Christmas book. We cleaned up our rooms. We are having a Christmas party Sunday.

  • Mary Anne Gilk says:

    Ready to clean, yoga pants, sick kiddo not in original plan so now dr then clean. So glad I came across this post. I can get this done!

  • Kristin says:

    I cleaned my closet the other day too. When we first moved to this house I was so excited about having a walk in closet. I’m still excited about it but I’m also realizing how easily it become a dumping ground for misc stuff! It’s a hole I have to watch out for.

  • Stephanie says:

    Great job on the room and closet! There are some books on my hope-to-read list in that stack, thanks for the opportunity.

  • Yolanda says:

    I happened to read this challenge after I set a goal to clean/declutter my bathroom- my least favorite thing to do. This post motivated me to get it done and the reality is- it took no time at all.

  • Ashli says:

    I have heard great things about the book Unwrapping the Greatest Christmas Gift! I’d love to win! 🙂

  • Emily says:

    Your honesty is so refreshing…and I’m grateful for the encouragement to clean too!

  • Heather says:

    Wow! I wish I had your energy right now! At 34 weeks pregnant, not a lot got accomplished at my house. I did manage to make our bed, if that counts. 🙂

  • Becky says:

    I take a few minutes every Saturday morning and tidy my room and change the sheets if needed. Then it doesn’t have a chance to get really bad. Every two weeks I vacuum and dust along with that.

  • Janelle says:

    Love your blog and even if I did not get any cleaning done it was inspiring and my house will get cleaned today along with some other projects!

  • Laura Dombrowsky says:

    I love reading your posts! My own closet is a horror… It’s next on my list 🙂

  • Andrea says:

    I don’t need more books to add to the piles I have waiting to be read – but I WANT some of those books!! I didn’t get to other cleaning yesterday – had a kid with a stomach bug so keeping up with that was enough for this Mama.

  • Kristy says:

    Need the inspiration to clean and would love those books!!!

  • Emily says:

    Looks great! It inspired me to get going on our master bedroom/bath.

  • Kari says:

    It was the opposite at my house. The girls’ rooms are done, but mine is still waiting. I feel so much calmer when my room is straightened, but it is the first one to get cluttered up again.

  • April says:

    I cleaned out two closets today that contain homeschool/office supply stuff and art supplies. I am due with a baby very soon, and so having that done makes me feel worlds better!

  • Charlotte Whatley says:

    thanks for the chance.

  • Meghan says:

    I have been meaning to watch moms night out!

  • Monica says:

    I’ve got some work to do on getting my house clean… But I’d love to win those books! I need new reading material!

  • ProverbialWife says:

    Christmas brings out the cleaning spirit here too 😀 Especially since we hope a long desired move will finally happen after the first of the year. De-cluttering and organizing now will make that go much easier! I adore reading – I’ve been dieing to read the Unwrapping the Greatest Gift. What a blessing that great stack of books would be (and so much fun to share with friends and family members too!)

  • Bethany Stewart says:

    This is just the motivation I needed to clean the closet in my room. Thanks!

  • Tina says:

    I am taking part in the 5 day cleaning the house.

  • Thia says:

    Great job on the bedroom! Mine is in need of a really deep clean too, but it won’t be happening before Christmas.

  • Heather says:

    I didn’t see this challenge until it was too late for Day 1, but I did clean a lot of laundry- and not nearly enough! Accidents keep happening for 1 child, which equals 2 extra loads atop the usual Mt. Laundry. December means extra outings + gift making, turning the house into a monstrosity- which affects our moods. Working on putting things away today (and more gift crafting!) Would love the books!

  • Holly @ Holistic Holly says:

    Great job! I would love to win those books!

  • Sandy says:

    Me! Pick meeee!

  • Karyn Nixon says:

    I try to clean a little every day, but sometimes, it does get away from me! 🙂

  • Allison says:

    I appreciate how ‘real’ you always are in your posts! It is nice to see that I am not the only one who still hasn’t made a constant habit of making my bed in the mornings. I am excited to be participating in your 5 day cleanse and tackled both bedroom closets last night! One overflowing bag of clothes to donate later, and it feels like a whole new space!

    As always, thanks for the encouragement!

  • Alyson Tamer says:

    I have got to clean my closet- right now it’s the Christmas present storage ground. I can’t even make it to the back for my clothes because of the shoes piled in front of the boxes! Your post has motivated me to clean it out, and wrap those presents!

    Thanks for the giveaway offer!

  • April Reid says:

    I am so glad you posted about this today! I took today to start cleaning the house for guests this weekend. I tackled my master bedroom, boxes needing to be unloaded from my car and put away along with cleaning some flat surfaces. My kids bedrooms are next.

  • Renee says:

    Thanks for this challenge! I was really inspired yesterday by this! Can’t wait to see what today’s challenge will bring!

  • Natalie Schroeder says:

    I plan to start my cleaning today & work on it as my schedule allows 🙂 Thanks for all the encouragement & reminders to give ourselves grace!

  • Trish says:

    I would LOVE to win. I ordered a blessing journal on Amazon but it was out of stock, so I am patiently waiting. I have also been dying to see Mom’s Night Out!

  • Amy says:

    Oh, I would loooove to win this!!! I’ve wanted that Ann voskamp book so badly!

  • Sheila Modine says:

    I would love to win the books! I’m fighting off a cold, so I took it easy yesterday. I did make my bed, picked up a couple of odds & ends, and put away the last of the folded clean clothes in the laundry basket. That was it. I definitely need to do more in my room & my kids, but it’ll wait until I’m feeling better. I’m trying to get things really tidy by the first of the year before I start student teaching. So if I can’t get through this week because of the cold, I’ll come back to the challenge the week between Christmas & New Years.

  • Lyndsay Withey says:

    I am a day behind on cleaning but hopefully I will get a chance to work on it today. We have a rare empty evening with everyone home.

  • Jessica says:

    I would love to win the books. Thanks for your generosity!

  • Maia says:

    I just cleaned the kid’s closet and it is great! Such a good feeling to get rid of extra stuff!

  • Mona says:

    Looks like a great stack of books! I need some new books to read.

  • Joanna says:

    I love new books. I am so bad on keeping up with cleaning. Always feel behind. Way to go on cleaning your room and closet.

  • April says:

    I am a list maker…so made my list for today. We shall see what actually gets accomplished. 🙂

  • Laura says:

    I sorted through some old clothes and Christmas items to donate! 🙂

  • Stephanie says:

    I would love to win the books! I would love to read All In. Merry Christmas!

  • Keli says:

    I need to get better at getting rid of things. Your posts on finding stuff to donate always inspire me to try better.

  • Cindy says:

    There are some books I’d enjoy reading! What a fun give away! Thanks!

  • Maura says:

    I woke up with a desire to clean and straighten things up. Since your challenge was for the bedroom, I decided to start there. I got the kids going on their schoolwork and went to work. Initially, I was just going to dust and take care of the surface clutter, but I ended up sorting out my vanity drawer and some cabinets as well. It felt great to get things in order and I was especially grateful because I found the creams I used to have to use for the hand eczema I had for about a year. I haven’t needed them in a year and a half. I am so thankful to be healed and no longer need them!

  • Elizabeth says:

    Oooh! There are lots of goodies in that stack I would love to have!

  • Heather R says:

    I’m so thankful for your honesty. Your blogs always inspire and encourage me so much. One day my routines will be more consistent, I just know it! Thank you for all that you do!

  • Amy Poller says:

    Oh my, my closet on a good day is still messier than your before pictures. It looks so relaxing in there!

  • Courtney says:

    There’s something about deep cleaning that makes you feel great! 🙂

  • Kathy in IN says:

    Ooh, pick me! 🙂

  • Sheila says:

    What great inspiration! The closet is always a dread for me. Why is it such a dumping ground? I just close the door and leave it for another day!

  • Linnea Lewis says:

    Got the house in shape to have our bachelor neighbor over for dinner last night!

  • Melissa says:

    I did not clean my own house. However my in laws are coming from Europe and they stay with my bachelor brother in law who is horrible at being clean and cleaning. My kind heart cleaned his house. I have one word for it…… GROSS!

  • Diane says:

    Looks great! My in laws are visiting soon so this is a great challenge! 🙂

  • Christine says:

    You have motivated me to stick with it! I have been working on cleaning up our schoolroom and weeding out a lot of books and paper junk. I try to spend a half-hour each day going through my piles. I have been homeschooling for 19 years and am finally getting rid of curriculum that will not be needed anymore.

  • Deanna says:

    You are an inspiration! If you can find time, I should be able too. Life has been crazy lately and the house has been neglected. And awesome looking pile of books!

  • Amy P says:

    I would love to win that stack of books and dvd! You are such an inspiration. I’ve been reading your blog for years and I’ve saved so much money! Just today I was telling my husband about the good diaper deal I got from Walgreens. He asked how I know about these deals and I said, “December212012, of course!”

  • Johnna says:

    Your room looks great. I love how “empty” it is!

  • Kim says:

    Thanks for doing this challenge. It helps keep me motivated. I would love to win the giveaway!

  • susan says:

    I just deep cleaned my bedroom last week. Found several bags of things to give away.

  • Angela C says:

    Since we’re moving in January my cleaning projects are very different than usual. I started going through the closets and pulling out things to get rid of. I didn’t get a whole lot done because I also has to go grocery shopping but it’s progressing. Those books look great! Thanks for thinking of us in your decluttering.

  • Amanda says:

    Will be cleaning in two bedrooms shared by five kids today. Sigh. I will survive! 🙂

  • Jessica says:

    Good for you! I think I would have given up cleaning my room that late into the day. I’m pretty much done after dinner (we eat at 5).

  • Amber says:

    Here’s hoping I accomplish something around the house today! Productivity has not been my strong suit lately.

  • sarah says:

    I didn’t get to cleaning bedrooms today but they desperately need it. It’s on my goals list for this week.

  • sheila says:

    Awesome job !! I really need to work on the clutter areas of my house, the areas that seem to catch everything. lol


  • Amanda Coomes says:

    i love when my room is organized and my closet!!!

  • Kristi Cary says:

    I hit the kitchen yesterday. The bedroom is overwhelming – Christmas presents are stored in there, so they’re disappearing slowly as I get them wrapped (a few each night).

  • Leslie Jerez says:

    It is refreshing to me that you are type a and your closets are not always in perfect shape. Makes me feel better about my closets!

  • laurie says:

    I love purging and cleaning out stuff! Thanks for sharing this.

  • Laura says:

    Oh, my bedroom needs some attention, too. (Ceiling fans included. :-P) Maybe I’ll get to it today!

  • Jere Ann says:

    I have stack of clothes from my boys summer wardrobe still sitting around my room. Maybe I will finally get to it this week! Thanks for the motivation!

  • Lisa says:

    I would LOVE LOVE LOVE the chance to read those books–although I have checked your’s out from the library already! I was impressed by looking at your photos showing your progress throughout the day. I actually smiled and felt a sense of peace when I saw the finished product of your bedroom. I wish I knew what that felt like. I work 32 hours a week in the legal field and have two small children with a loooong commute every day. It’s hard just to find time to do laundry, let alone actually clean out clutter. One day. Anyway, I shall continue to read the blog and do what I can, when I can. I’m working on contentment in this season of my life (still a work in progress, obviously!) 🙂

  • Tricia says:

    I’m working on cleaning our bedroom also!

  • Tamah Collier says:

    I haven’t seen Mom’s Night Out and I’d love too! Also would love to read Choosing Gratitude! Thanks for all you do to encourage your readers!

  • Denise says:

    I enjoy reading your posts. I worked on cleaning the playroom yesterday.

  • Kirsten S says:

    I deep cleaned the living room yesterday , the toys were out of control. I got rid of 2 boxes of stuff yesterday, and a ton of stuff in the last month as I have deep decluttered my whole house. I enjoy reading your posts. 🙂

  • Mary says:

    Our house is always in a horrible mess after the weekend because I get out my routine. I may attempt to tackle our closet today myself.

  • Olivia Mullins says:

    I love the looks of that book about unwrapping the greatest gift at Christmas. Would love to win it! 🙂

  • Stacey says:

    I have only recently found your blog and enjoy checking it out every day (even when I should be working :)) I used to be such an avid reader in my “younger life”, until Katie, age 6, Sophie, age 4, and Bobby, age 2, came along. Although I love them dearly, I miss having my me time and reading. I would really like to find that again, these would be a new genre for me, and I would not feel guilty about having spent any of our small budget on books. Here’s to hoping I could win!

  • Miranda says:

    I love these posts, but I always have a little giggle about you thinking your room is SO messy! 🙂

  • Beth says:

    thanks for keeping it real!!!
    I love that you don’t have any clutter around. Awesome!

  • Shona Bracco says:

    I’m always amazed at how much longer things take than I think they will!

  • Dean says:

    Did not clean yesterday :(…need to clean but it did not happen! Hopefully today!!!

  • Pam True says:

    I would love to win that stack of books!

  • Abby @ Mother on a Mission says:

    I have to admit, I got stuck way back at your membership to an office-sharing space. That’s just the neatest idea!

  • Sarah P says:

    I would love to win the books.

  • Jo Hast says:

    That’s awesome!

  • Nicole Mason says:

    I love your honesty! Thanks for the motivation to go clean! : )

  • margaret says:

    I decided with company coming over on Wednesday, not to wait until the last minute. We spent yesterday afternoon cleaning up the kids rooms (now if they will just stay that way!)

  • Rach says:

    I don’t know if you’re willing to post to a missionary in Europe but if you are oh how I’d love these books!

  • Adeena says:

    I love this post and the idea of cleaning a little something everyday. I may not get to everything on my list. However, if the bed is made and dishes done. I feel like I actually accomplished something.

    Thanks for sharing, the book list is great and would love to share some of these with others.

  • Hollie says:

    Hoping to win the books!

  • Leslie says:

    I love that the both of you participate in homeschooling. How great that each of you get the time you need, and the kids get to work with both of you! Love it!

  • Laura Oller says:

    I also was catching up from slacking off. I would love some new reading material!

  • Emily Nielsen says:

    I did some cleaning on Monday because we hosted about 25 people for dinner that night! 🙂

  • RuthS says:

    You make me smile, I hope you feel better soon, and I would love to win the books!

  • Jessica P says:

    Would love to read some of those books. Also would love to get my room room organized again!

  • Karina says:

    I just love your blog. Thank you for always being real and allowing your readers to see that there is no such thing as perfect.

  • Erin says:

    Good job on getting your room and closet clean! And, what a great book stack! Thanks for a chance to win.
    Hope you have a great December and Christmas!

  • Reva says:

    Would love to win a stack of books. Deep cleaning my bedroom closet is on my list of to do’s.

  • Rachel says:

    Would love to win and read these.

  • Kristen B says:

    I would love a stack of books, to read and give as gifts!!

  • Kandace says:

    I cleaned yesterday while both kids were at school. Their clothes are finally where they’re supposed to be after we started a 3-room switch up two weeks before Thanksgiving. Kids’ room to playroom, guest room to former kids’ room, playroom to where guest room was… Still not completely finished but so close. What were we thinking?!? More cleaning today.

  • Kate P. says:

    I managed to get around to cleaning out our chest freezer. It’s in the garage and it was about 26 degrees outside yesterday, but it didn’t take long and now it’s off my list!

  • Tracy says:

    I have been so busy lately with projects and work that I haven’t had time to really clean the house. I am hoping to get it done by this weekend as I am hoping to have a playdate for my son.

  • chantel says:

    I folded and put away 10 loads of laundry today. With 6 kiddos, we have a ton of laundry. I usually try to wash all laundry on Sunday and fold/put away on Mondays. That routine seems to work the best for our family and my time frame.

  • Angela Johnnides says:

    I started following your blog when I had my daughter over a year ago, and I’m always touched and inspired by your posts. Including this one! The Clean Your House before Christmas Challenge has been a great reminder every day when I check your site, and is great motivation to tackle the BIG challenge in little steps! I would absolutely LOVE a copy of Say Goodbye to Survival Mode (and the rest of the books that are in the stack too!)… so I’m hoping you pick me!! =D

  • Sarah says:

    Your house is immaculate looking to me! Even with the before pics. 😉 I got a good day of cleaning in yesterday. Today is just mopping and vacuuming.

  • Ellen says:

    I’ve been working on cleaning/decluttering our boys room (slowly, since I have a 3 week old!). Hoping to sell or donate some of the toys we’ve put aside before Christmas. Other than that my cleaning goals right now are just keeping up with the dishes and laundry 🙂

  • Karen says:

    The other day I cleaned out my cookbook stash and found lots to get rid of. It feels so good to get rid of things I don’t use.

  • Amy Lauren says:

    I’m a day late but I’m joining into this challenge. I really need to clean my house in general, we have done some traveling lately and been busy too, it has fallen by the wayside 🙁

  • Michelle O. says:

    Thank you so much for offering this giveaway! I’ve been thinking about watching the movie Mom’s Night Out 🙂

  • Laura says:

    I started with the kids room. Got all the clothes sorted! Today should be toys and deep clean.

  • Jennifer Bevel says:

    Sounds like you had a very productive day, even if it didn’t go exactly as planned. I really admire your energy and focus!

  • Katrina says:

    Every one of those titles looks so good! Would love to win!

  • Jen in TX says:

    Would love these books! As for cleaning, spent the evening cleaning the piano.

  • Trisha says:

    Looks like a pile of books I would enjoy reading, instead of cleaning! 😉

  • Melissa H says:

    I want to win the “All In” book most of all.

    I was thinking isn’t there a room in your new house that could be converted to an office. Although I understand it is also hard to get things done at home bc there are still so many distractions.

  • Susan G. says:

    This is a week in the advent calendar to celebrate peace. I will not strive to be perfect or measure my self by my ability to meet the challenge.

    So, the list is before. He fills me. Thus, I will tackle the mess.

    After all, My mess is His Masterpiece (Mom’s Night Out!)

  • Emily says:

    I’m 14 weeks pregnant, and while I really wish I could be cleaning, the reality is that it isn’t really happening right now. My hubby was a sweetheart and cleaned the kitchen and living room after supper <3 I would love to win the books!

  • JESSICA COTE says:

    I’m just now seeing the post so i will have to participate tonight! I need to do something because I hate the state my house is currently in!

  • Melody says:

    Your room looks great!

  • Sarah Acker says:

    I didn’t know you were doing this but I seriously just tackled the exact same mess in our master bedroom! My closet was the worse! I love the feeling of accomplishment!!

  • Kim says:

    Note to self: dust the ceiling fans before company comes for Christmas!

  • Michelle says:

    We are currently commuting out of state for five days of the week and returning to our house the remaining two. We homeschool, and didn’t want our family to be separated until our house sells, so we basically are living out of suitcases. I can’t wait for us to be settled and to have “normal” chores again. Right now it’s pack, unpack, wash, repeat….ugh 🙂

  • Cj Strong says:

    Would love to win the books! Spent time cleaning out my bedside basket and got rid of some books/magazines…to make room for more 🙂

  • Courtney says:

    I didn’t make it to the bedrooms yesterday either. I, too, have a head cold and yesterday I just felt awful. I made it to my bedroom after all of the morning work…and laid down on the bed. And I decided that was okay. 😉

  • HoosierMom says:

    I just moved and my house is still clean and mostly organized from moving. But I did rearrange some small furniture in our bedrooms and found new homes for several things.

    When I saw this picture, I wondered why would you need to go back and read all your own books again? I like the explanation–what a fun giveaway!

  • Connie says:

    Thanks for keeping it real! I would love to win and read those books. Your site really helps me get through the day! I am home a lot with fibromyalgia and other health issues. But I know many are much worse off. I am thankful for all my blessings. You are a blessing to many people including me. Thank You! I can tell you write from your heart. We need more people like you in this world. It would be a much better place!

  • Anna says:

    I’m missing on this challenge because I’m sick

  • Jennifer says:

    Your closet looks great now!

  • Heather G says:

    I worked on my room and my kids rooms, but I still need to finish my closet. 🙁

  • Danielle B says:

    Great Job! You did awesome Crystal! I just started reading your “Say Goodbye to Survival Mode” last night. It’s really getting me thinking. I’ve always thought I don’t really do that much, but recently I’ve been struggling with panic attacks and anxiety so bad I can’t sleep anymore. Reading the first chapter last night was very revealing and convicting. I don’t do many things outside our home and I don’t have any type of business, but I try to do way too many things at home, and also but extra pressure on myself that I’m not doing “good enough.” I look forward to continuing to read your book, and starting to change my life for the better. Thank you for being so candid and raw in your writing. I’m weary of perfect and your honesty is very refreshing.

    Danielle Bradbury

  • Jen Smith says:

    Today I vacuumed where the tree is supposed to stand in our living room, and found some of last years needles 🙂

  • Diana Burk says:

    Thank you, Crystal, for being real! I get so down on myself sometimes for not having it “all together.” I broke down the other day just because I felt like my house was so cluttered and crazy! Sometimes I can’t seem to get anything done with my two sweet, whirlwinds always by my side. But you’re teaching me that I need to give myself grace. I would sincerely love these books, I never win a giveaway. Thanks!

  • Keri says:

    Thanks for keeping it real!

  • Rachel says:

    Thanks for sharing and keeping it real – great job on the room! Oh yeah, I would love to win the books too. 🙂

  • Stephanie says:

    I’m not participating in the cleaning challenge (I just moved from Boston to rural IL so I have some MAJOR adjusting going on as well as putting my home together:) but I am enjoying reading about your journey!

  • Helensue says:

    Thanks for the challenge. I let things go for too long and it’s hard to get motivated, it’s much easier to look the other way. I made a small dent in the bedroom yesterday and plan to keep working on it today. I know it will take longer than 5 days, gotta start somewhere.

  • Jen says:

    I spent the day catching up on laundry and only managed to clean off my desk – so day 2 will be bedroom part 2 for me ! Thanks for the encouragement!

  • Amanda says:

    I have been reading your blog for the past few years and love it! Thanks for all you do! I would love to win the books and give some to family and keep a couple for myself!

  • Tamara says:

    I’d love to win those books! I’m currently 24 weeks preggers with my first bundle and have began piling up reading to him constantly (since apparently he can hear now). I try reading to him about success and thoughtfulness in the giving to others so he’ll be ten steps ahead in his live – luckily a quick glance and your giveaway showed the word GRATITUDE. Perfect case scenario? I think YES!!

  • Tori says:

    Ummm I cleaned up and put away 5 things this morning… I’m starting small as to not totally overwhelm myself, which is usually what happens when I try to take on a normal sized cleaning project .

  • Kelly Boehm says:

    Thanks so much for sharing. What kindergarten workbooks does your son use? I am trying to find something like that for my daughter. Thanks so much. You get so much done on one day. 🙂

  • Diana Campbell says:

    I would love to win.

  • Darcy says:

    Would love this set of books!

  • gloria gouse says:

    So nice to see my house is not the only one that gets cluttered and so inspiring! I will be deep cleaning this weekend because I work full time, the week just doesn’t work for me.

  • Cris says:

    Thanks for being real. The master bath was what I tackled today… Feels so good to see clean!!
    And that stack of books… With a new baby due in a few weeks I would live to win 😉

  • Krystal says:

    I love how honest you are with all your posts! It is comforting to know I’m not the only one who doesn’t always check everything off my to-do list. Your posts always seem to be so timely in my life and always provide a boost of inspiration. Thank you!

  • Nikki says:

    Love this!! I didn’t complete all the things on my to-do list yesterday. I love your honesty and how accountable you are to your readers! Congrats on following through and doing a great job! Would love those books too!

  • Brittany says:

    My house has been a wreck for some time now. I have been really sick and have not been able to accomplish much of anything. However I am feeling somewhat better and am getting started on my house cleaning right now! Thank you so much for the motivation; it was that extra push I needed! Thank you for sharing!! 🙂

  • Nikki Strong says:

    I love these kinds of posts! It inspires me to go home and try to match what you did for the day. I don’t always get it all done, but at least it is some sort of progress. I would love to win this stack! I have rented and started watching Mom’s Night Out three times and never make it past the first 10 minutes because of “little interruptions,” so I have promised myself that I am not going to rent it again and waste my money… so I can completely relate to how the mom feels in the beginning of the movie. Looking forward to trying to tackle something in the bedrooms when I get off work this evening!

  • Jenna says:

    We are in the middle of installing laminate flooring in our living room, so a big chunk of the living room furniture is in the entryway, study, and kitchen. The bottom of our linen/tool closet is connected with that floor, so about half our tools are in the guest room. As soon as we finish the living room flooring, we have to finish the closet in the nursery so that I can start putting away the boxes and bags of baby stuff that are currently sitting around the perimeter of the nursery (I am about 8 months pregnant). I am itching to get everything sorted and put into its rightful place so we can have our house back and put up our Christmas tree! Hopefully we will be finished with the flooring and closet this week and my husband and I will be doing our own 5-day challenge next week. 🙂

  • Eva G. says:

    I agree with the other comments, these posts are motivating. I’m definitely joing this challenge! 🙂

  • Angie Young says:

    I got my room, minus the ceiling fan completely cleaned yesterday. I even managed to make the bed again this morning. I’m kinda tickled with that!! Now today I’m going to try and tackle the bathroom. I hate cleaning that room more than any other room in the house. It is shared with two boys and husband, our litter box and our puppy training pad spot. So yucky it always is!

  • Rebecca says:

    I tackled my kitchen yesterday. We had just cleaned up the kids’ bedrooms the end of last week since we had some friends come over last Friday evening for a Christmas get together.

  • Tracy P. says:

    I am so encouraged by your goals and truthfulness.

  • Marie says:

    Thanks for being honest and I love how you don’t have clutter!! I love reading when you have everyday life stories, such as this. And I love Flylady to, she has helped me a lot.

  • Sarah says:

    I am always up for new books! I go to NCC and have yet to read “All In”. I’d love to give it a look!

  • Crystal says:

    I had a yoga pants kind of day, and though I didnt get everything done that i had planned, I did get Christmas cards done, which is fun and not fun at the same time!

  • Whitney Asay says:

    Thank you for being so real. It’s a breath of fresh air and encourages me today! Merry Christmas!

  • Tabitha says:

    Our closet and bedroom are embarrassing, maybe I need a public forum to get my self in gear;) Oh well. I did get all the Christmas gift out of the top of the closet, wrapped them and put them under the tree. Does that count? Looks like a great stack of books – I would love to win. Thanks for a chance!

  • Stephanie says:

    What an interesting stack of books! I especially like the author Ann Voskamp.

  • Kimberly in NC says:

    I straitened up our master bedroom as well. Making our bed everyday really helps it look much better. I’d love to win the books!

  • Laney says:

    Three of us started on your challenge yesterday: (1) my stepson’s wife who was a friend of mine long before she was my stepson’s wife. They have four children in a very small house and homeschool – she has a lit to keep irganized in a small space; (2) my stepdaughter who also has four (three wee ones) and sone with soecial needs, in a much larger house. (Which is worse? Small house very full, or large house, more to clean?) and then there is me (3) running a business from home, just me and the hubby, and two cats who are thenselves the source of much need to clean! I couldn’t even start the challenge yesterday as my day was long, linger, lingest, so today I get to do two. I see some awfully nice books in that stack and if I win them us three gals will split them up according to need. Thanks for the encouragement … I was just telling my husband I feel pulled so many different directions I don’t know where to start. Bedrooms. I will start with the bedrooms!

  • jenn says:

    I would love to win your books! We didn’t get to cleaning..I hope to accomplish it today. 🙂

  • Jennifer says:

    Please don’t put me in the book drawing, I already have Say Goodbye to Survival Mode and I’m trying to pare down our shelves.

    However, what is it you were using to clean your ceiling fan? I can’t find any long duster thingie that works well but that thing you were using looks pretty effective.

  • Deana says:

    We tackled our gift closet and sorted all the Christmas presents for our kids, nieces and nephews. Christmas shopping is almost done!

  • Sara says:

    I’m still working our bedrooms today too! I would love to win the books!

  • Becky says:

    I’m still working on getting my Christmas decor up! I love how you keep your home very simple. I’m working towards that, but it’s truly a big challenge.

  • Monica says:

    I would love to win! Thanks for the giveaway!

  • Candace says:

    I decided to tackle the kitchen and didn’t get as far as I’d like, but hey the floor got swept. It’s such a blessing that a new day is a new chance though!

  • Terri White says:

    I am so inspired by your cleaning posts. It shows how we are all in this together and all struggle with cleaning in addition to all of the other responsibilities of work and home life. What better way to get cleaning than to join a challenge with others and make it fun! Today I am gathering boxes of things to donate to help others in need.

  • Tay R says:

    I love your huge closet! It does feel good when everything is cleaned up and put away. Thanks for the post. 🙂

  • Sarah Hunt says:

    Tackled a whole house clean up after the weekend. No deep cleaning just a quick tidy up of things.

  • Gretchen says:

    I am a middle/high school librarian so I was at school all day. I did not get to deep clean anything! There was too much homework after school. We did deep clean Sunday afternoon and got so much done in the kid’s rooms! This weekend we will tackle the living areas! The goal is to get it done before we get out of school for Christmas so we can enjoy Christmas. Family is coming!! I love the books in the giveaway, Crossing my fingers!!

  • Stephanie says:

    I am currently working on cleaning our closet out and preparing for my baby girl in February

  • Stephanie says:

    I am currently working on cleaning our closet out and preparing for my baby girl in February

  • Amy M says:

    I worked on my kitchen for about 2 hours and maybe only got 1/4 of it done. Can we extend this cleaning challenge to 14 days? 😉 Thanks for doing these posts as it helps me to get motivated.

  • Hannah W. says:

    While I am an organized person most of the time and love to read posts about organizing and such, I have to admit that the thing that stood out to me the most was the violin case in the closet. Haha! I guess that’s rather hard to miss since I’m a violinist too.

  • Leah Craig says:

    I sooooo need to do this deep cleaning in my house before we host Christmas! Thank you for the kick in the pants! 🙂

  • Mitzi says:

    Thanks again for always being so honest and real with us! I hope to get some kind of cleaning done before Christmas! LOL

  • Cortnie Doan says:

    Happy Holidays! I love your website!

  • Jennifer says:

    Great work today!
    I would love to win these books!

  • Jennifer says:

    Great Job today!
    I would love to win these books!

  • Brett Marie says:

    It was the kind of day where I was just excited to keep things from falling apart but did not have the chance to actually clean anything up – grace for the moment! Thanks for the giveaway 🙂

  • Alicia says:

    Thank you so much for always being real. You give me hope.

  • Jen says:

    Sick yesterday so didn’t get anything done I had planned after work. Working on the kids rooms today. Love “Say Goodbye to Survival Mode” and “Mom’s Night Out”! 🙂

  • Kristen says:

    I desperately need to embrace the “give things away” attitude. We usually find tons of stuff to get rid of when we clean, but often hold on to it in hopes of selling it at a yard sale or on eBay. Really, it just sits in a closet somewhere and leaves a mental burden on us, knowing that we really should deal with that stuff. Anyway, hoping to win some new books!

  • Marilyn B. says:

    Thanks for the encouragement to clean out rooms/closets, etc. I have a desk that has many, many months of coupons, Christmas ideas, etc, that I have been whittling away over the last week. It always amazes me at how easily cluttered desks and tables can get if we don’t keep a good handle on it!

  • Pam says:

    Great job! I didn’t get both bathrooms cleaned, but I DID clean the shower and toilet in ours – like you, I didn’t get to it until AFTER the day was almost over, but your challenge got me in there to do something, so THANK YOU!

  • Jennifer says:

    Yesterday was my errand running day, but I plan to get the kitchen and living room cleaned today. I would love to win those books!

  • Julie says:

    Yeah – we had one of those days yesterday too!
    Poor Hubby’s car was broken into, which sorta derailed all of our plans as he inventoried everything. (Despite having a car full of unpacked military gear, the only thing that was taken was his lunch – – we are so thankful. And pondering if I should pack an extra lunch for him to leave on top of his car!)

    Youngest kid is sick and in the middle of potty training.
    Oldest kid lost his balance in the bathroom, and managed to fall into the potty.
    We had ramen for supper, enjoyed a good laugh, and went to bed early.

  • Heidi says:

    I donated 2 boxes of items to a our local Big Brothers Big Sisters charity. It’s addicting to “rid out” & yet rewarding to know that someone else can use it.

  • Kristy says:

    This is a project I need to do. Thanks for the encouragement.

  • Jennifer says:

    I am so impressed at how little you have in your closets! I need to get busy in my closets! Also, I would LOVE to win that copy of Mom’s night Out for our women’s ministry at church. We are planning a movie night!

  • Jen L. says:

    It looks like you still got a lot done though! We were not so lucky. Everyone in the house is sick right now! :/

  • Kristin @ The Touring Camper says:

    You inspire me to go clean…my first wave of house guests arrive this weekend, so I guess I better get busy! 🙂

  • Gina Mosley says:

    My day was packed with doing kid-related but a simple text from my husband in the middle of the day, that made my whole day brighter. 🙂

  • Terri says:

    I’ve been trying to get all my Christmas baking done this week, so next week will be my time to give the house a good cleaning!

  • Kris says:

    Way to go on the cleaning, I wish I had a blog to keep me accountable whenever I needed to tackle a deep cleaning. Love the way you always keep it real and simple!! Would love to be able to share your books with my Christmas list as I am always telling people about your blog!!

  • johnstka says:

    I cleaned all the hardwoods and swept/mopped the kitchen.

  • Sarah says:

    I would love to read any or all of those books!!! Yay for clean closets!

  • Brandy Fisk says:

    I washed the walls in my 3 year olds room and the hallway, vaccumed the whole house, swept and mopped the kitchen and entry way, and washed all the bedding in all three rooms.

  • Beth says:

    some excellent reads in that stack!! thanks for the opportunity!

  • Tricia McCammack says:

    Looks like some great books! Worked on the boys’ room yesterday.

  • Carla says:

    Like you, cleaning was a great intention and it just didn’t make it quite to fulfillment. I did some, but not all that I had hoped.

    I would love to win the books, although that may mean that some more cleaning won’t get done!

  • Susan says:

    I didn’t get to any major cleaning projects yet, but got to spend some precious time with my little boys working on their art projects–stickers, markers, and letters. I was able to pick up the house, make beds, load dishes, and keep the laundry going–and all those little chores keep the bigger ones more manageable.:)

  • jill says:

    We are demo-ing our basement so I have many weeks of sorting/returning boxes down there.

  • Hanna says:

    I love free books!!!

  • Rachel says:

    If your comforter is long enough and you could deal with the look of it – if you tucked it under your mattress at the foot it might help making the bed every day less challenging. Just a thought. I really enjoy your blog.

  • April says:

    Between yesterday and today I deep cleaned the bathroom, rearranged and cleaned the linen closet, and cleaned the mud room and laundry room!! Making progress!! Oh! And got a contractor size bag of toys to donate from just one corner of the boys room!!

  • ines gillier says:

    My house was a mess, and I don’t like cleaning, but… I like cooking. So I invited 5 friends this morning to help me with the cleaning, and then I feed them with a great lunch. We spend 1hour working through my house, and 2 hours having a great time around the food, and now… my house is ready for Christmas!

  • Hailey says:

    I would love those books! I know a couple moms who could really be blessed by moms night out and Say Goodbye to Survival mode just as I was!!

  • danielle says:

    Pregnant with two boys under age four! Went through some papers yesterday and cleaning kitchen good today. Hope to make cookies for the neighbors too. Anything feels like an accomplishment right now.
    Not sure if that is the gratitude journal I see or not, but I’m still hoping to get sold of one for my sis- in- law. Still at home and needs encouragement to focus on the blessings in life! Thanks for the encouragement to clean and a chance to win some good looking books! Your room looks great by the way! Need to tackle mine in a serious way, ha.

  • Ashley says:

    Fun giveaway! De-cluttering never ends, does it?

  • Patricia says:

    I love deep cleanings, is my way to de-stress. I just finish my living room, and now working on my girls room. .I’m making some canvas and a Hollywood style mirror for them that needs some final. Hopefully Ill be done by this coming weekend.

  • danielle says:

    Ahold of one* sorry.

  • Megan says:

    I was able to clean my boys’ room but didn’t make it to mine. I’m hoping to get it done tonight. Honestly, I’d be happy if it looked like your before picture.

  • Jen says:

    Didn’t get to cleaning…. Had a list a mile long already before I remembered this! Thought I’d get caught up today but one of my boys got a stomach bug, so don’t think it’s going to happen!

  • Annie says:

    I would love to win these books! Yesterday was our grocery shopping day, which takes all day with 5 children 6 and under! However, so far today, the kitchen floor has been mopped! Woohoo! I love reading how real you are and how you adapt your family’s routine as life’s seasons require it. We are struggling to find a routine that works for us with so many changes. My husband’s work schedule is anything but normal, we have a newborn, and trying to homeschool our oldest two in addition to serving 4 bookkeeping clients. Not even sure where to start, which is challenging for someone who thrives on order!

  • Anna Groover says:

    I worked on my room but wasn’t able to fully complete it. But I did get a box of get rid ofs:)

  • Crystal says:

    I am clearing out kid’s toys today. My two year old daughter was a big help! I’m going to tackle my room and closet next!

  • Sherry says:

    I am getting Christmas cards out and gifts out to the mail to clear up space on counters & such.

  • Esther says:

    Haven’t gotten around to doing any organizing yet this December . . . I’m a minimalist at heart, but my husband and 3 kids aren’t 🙂 Always a challenge trying to keep the house clutter-free! Hopefully I can fit in some decluttering and make a late-in-the-year donation to the thrift store . . .

  • Becky says:

    Thanks for doing these post…..I really need to clean as well.

  • Anna says:

    Thank you for being so real in your posts! I have a long to do list right now, so you gave me a little jump start to finish a few of my unfinished projects this afternoon. Thanks!

  • Colleen says:

    I’ve heard lovely things about that Ann Voskamp book! Love the cleaning updates.

  • Olivia Adair says:

    Looks like a great stack of books to win! And I’m about to go clean up my bedroom- reading your post was my reminder! 🙂

  • Megan C says:

    Looks great!

  • christi says:

    Bedrooms also need to be a priority at our house. Now to convince everyone it’s a family project!

  • Michele M says:

    I love reading about how you’re makng things work. My husband and I both work full-time outside our house, and trying to help 4 kids with homework means the weekends for the “extras”. I’ve broken them down into monthly, quarterly, and semi-annual tasks, and work on them as I have time. I don’t get everything done that I’d like to, but since I started doing this (last month) I’m at least making progress!

  • Jill says:

    I set a timer for an hour (it ended up taking a bit longer) to clean our kitchen. There was some clutter (our kitchen seems to be the place where we leave stuff) but it really needed mopped, drawers clean out. Found some food to donate to the pantry. PS I love books – I’m a dying breed!

  • Sherilyn says:

    I have a to-do list a mile long before we leave to visit family in PA for Christmas, and cleaning didn’t make it on there, but this post was making me feel like getting the cleaning done too! 🙂

  • Janice Gardner says:

    I’m trying to get motivated to do what you are doing! Thank you for the inspiration!

  • Sara M says:

    Awesome job cleaning! Your posts are so real and encouraging! Thanks!

  • Jen says:

    I love that your kids help you to do little jobs. It’s so important to show kids they are part of the family by doing chores.
    I’d love to win the books:-)

  • Steve says:

    My beautiful daughter has 5 precious children under 8 years old, these books would be such a blessing to her. Thanks for all you do for us!

  • Mel says:

    Wow, I am IMPRESSED that you got it all done in two hours. And you’ve inspired me to just start somewhere — I started today and I’m slowly making progress. Thank you!

  • Rebecca Y says:

    Yikes, where does all this stuff even come from? 🙂 So glad to do it now before Christmas stuff comes online.

  • Lacey says:

    I have cleaned the kitchen, organized my laundry room, and finished going through the Christmas decorations. … I am thankful for this productive day!

  • Kim says:

    I’m jumping in today! Yesterday I had a dental appointment and a huge stock up grocery trip to do but today I’m working on the house!

    I’d LOVE to win the stack of books 🙂

    Thanks Crystal!
    Merry Christmas

  • Jenn says:

    I washed dishes. Every single one. Because every single one was dirty!

  • Meredith says:

    I’m getting inspired to start cleaning and purging again… Before Christmas! I would love some new books to look forward to reading in the new year! Choose me! 🙂

  • Kim M says:

    Way to get things done! You’ve inspired me to clean my fans, it’s been 3 years! YIKES indeed!

  • Emily says:

    I cleaned up my budget and papers…also cleaned out my car finally! I had a bag of random things that needed to be gone through.
    And my clothes…laundry of course! 🙂

  • melissa french says:

    I worked on our school closet yesterday. I bit off more that I could finish too so I’m tackling it again today. I would love to win the books as Ive gotten out of the habit of reading for myself the last several months and want to start again.

  • Elese says:

    What brand & where did you get that suitcase?!??

  • Carly says:

    This was great motivation for me! I spent Monday afternoon after work and before school pick up doing some deep cleaning – tidied and dusted my daughter’s room, switched over my fall decor to Christmas/winter, and cleaned some very dirty glass doors and mirrors!

  • Angela B. says:


  • LaTanya says:

    My guest room really needs a good cleaning. As I have gone through the other rooms in the house, items that I plan to sell have ended up in boxes and on the bed, and stacked on the floor in the guest room. Drives me crazy but will slowly work on cleaning it up.

  • Cathy F. says:

    You are such an inspiration!! I may end up with a clean house yet…

  • Courtney says:

    We finally decorated for Christmas last night. We usually do it the day after Thanksgiving, but we were out of town, then we all got colds, so it was done last night. Today I put the boxes away, caught up on laundry (only one load left to fold and put away), finished clean up from feeding 6 men lunch yesterday (hubby worked cattle), and am hoping now to get my desk tidied up. That will be the extra project for the day!

  • Christine says:

    Awesome job!

  • Vanessa says:

    Great job!

  • Ashley Kurty says:

    I’ve been in such a decluttering mood lately, but I credit it to nesting for Baby #2 and getting ready for Move #3! It always feels like such an accomplishment when a space feels put together once again!

  • Jen says:

    Great job on your closet!

  • Jennifer says:

    You are a inspiration. I have Friday off so I am hoping to get my house cleaned then. Would love to have some new books to read.

  • Crystal Storms says:

    I admire your dedication that even though it happened later in the day you stuck to your commitment – accountability is a good thing : )

  • Janet says:

    Would love to win this! And love posts like this!

  • Hope Mitchner says:

    Well, I made a list of everything I had planned to accomplish today. Then I got called in to work, having to take my 9 month and 4 year old grandsons with me. At this point (6:40 pm.) I still haven’t left work. Will try again tomorrow. I am definitely not going in to the office!!

  • Lisa V says:

    As soon as I go on my upcoming vacation days, this is soooo happening! And maybe some time to read 😉

  • kim t. says:

    almost nothing done. we are moving at the end of the week and i’m mourning. being a big baby. trying to take care of my 6 littles. and get over this.

  • Traci says:

    Love this! I have had a pile of clothes on my floor to go to goodwill for three wks…. I love that you have more bracelets than you have clothing items in your closet!!!!

  • Lynn says:

    Didn’t get to my room because my kids decided to take a nap in there! Since naptime was my planned cleaning time I worked on the kitchen instead.

  • Rebecca Loach says:

    Looks like you had a very busy and productive day. Love the box of gifts your mom sent for Silas. 🙂

  • Heidi says:

    I feel like I made a dent today in my cleaning! Thanks for the encouragement. 🙂 Also, your kitchen counters are really clean! I have so many appliances that I use daily all over my counter.

  • Rachael says:

    I’d love to win…great job cleaning!

  • Allison says:

    Great job cleaning! very inspirational!

  • Sara says:

    I’m jealous of your storage space in your closet! Great job cleaning!

  • marybeth says:

    The closet looks great..maybe I should get off the couch and work on mine!
    Would love to win the books!

  • Christina Burrell says:

    I’d love to win.

  • Christy C. says:

    You’ve inspired me to organize my closet! Would love to win these books! Thanks for the opportunity!

  • Jen says:

    Thanks for giving me motivation to want to start my closet clean out! I’d love to read some of the books you’ve read and written!

  • Charlene E says:

    Crystal, I hope someone who sends you freebies sees your bedroom wall and sends some artwork that would be ideal above you bed.

    I love how thorough you are in cleaning, but sometimes I almost feel sad that things look so empty. C.

  • Nicki Beyale says:

    Would love this stack of books! Thank you for the awesome blog!! 🙂

  • Carrie Skiles says:

    Great job cleaning, especially a closet in an hour and a half! I love decluttering and organizing closets in my house, although lately I haven’t had the energy. Maybe once our second baby is born in February, I will get some of that motivation back!

  • Brandi N says:

    Am I too late to enter to win the books? I love books! 😉

  • Heather says:

    I love reading your posts, especially ones like this! You always help to remind me that getting some stuff done is a success, not a failure….Perfectionist type a personality here 😉 ha Been a follower of your blog for years now and have never loved a blog more! Blessings to you!

  • Jamie says:

    Got some organizing done in our storage room and a whole box full of garage sale items. That felt good! Keep up the good work!

  • Sarah says:

    Would love to win the books. My house is neat, in general, though not as clutter free as yours. But the deep cleaning needs to be done much more often. Thanks for the inspiration

  • I am proud of myself for the amount of cleaning I completed today. I cleaned my kitchen floor and cleaned my living room floor. I changed the air conditioner filter. Vacummed my den. Washed and dried the blankets on my bed. Folded 3 loads of laundry. Straightened my stockpile. Gathered supplies to start Christmas wrapping. Cooked baked potatoes and chicken chili for dinner. We also have leaves blow through our entryway in front of our den door and I cleaned those up and disposed of them. As a final talent, I purged some unneeded papers. Overall, I feel pleased with my cleaning progress today. I feel thankful for the ability to do all these things.

  • Lauren says:

    Okay, you’ve officially inspired me to get going on my closet. Although my brag is that I cleaned out my kitchen cabinets yesterday – and got rid of 24 things!!

  • Laura says:

    Today was one of those everything-that-can-go-wrong-will days, but you have inspired me to AT LEAST pick up the bedroom and throw in a load of laundry. Thanks!

  • KristenW says:

    I would love to win those books!

  • Jessica Russell says:

    I would love to win the books! We are slowly reclaiming our downstairs and relocating our 4 boys’ stuff to their rooms. Thank you for the continued inspiration.

  • Carolina M. says:

    I have a full time job apart of also being a full time mom and pastor’s wife. My cleaning routing is almost limited to minutes in the morning and as I return home in the evening on weekdays and Saturdays… Help!

    Love reading your blog.

  • Jennifer Hodges says:

    It does feel so great to have a clean bedroom- I think it’s my favorite room in the house to have freshly clean. I love it when I make my bed as well, but it is usually the last thing on my list to be done before I head out the door. I’m trying to get into the habit of making it everyday. I love when I get home from work and it’s made!

  • Carolina Brinkman says:

    Bedroom still need a little more work!

  • Tracy says:

    I would love to win these books! I have been trying to organize my bedroom as well.

  • KatieP says:

    I’ve been doing a lot of cleaning, and finally got our dining room picked up and all of the clean laundry folded! Your book giveaway looks awesome…many of those are on my to-read list!!

  • Nicole Evans says:

    Oh!! I would LOVE that stack! Those are some I have been really wanting to read. Your blog is awesome by the way!!

  • Samantha C. says:

    That “Mom’s Night Out” movie is a fun one 🙂

  • Rachel Rusticus @redeemingher says:

    Hi! Thanks for sharing your real life work/life juggling. I’d love to win Ann’s book!

  • Misty S says:

    I love reading how others manage their days, thanks for all you do!

  • Renee Anderson says:

    I feel your energy! I think I will try to tackle my kids closets tomorrow in between a few good reads! Thanks!

  • Ruth says:

    Yesterday, It took me all morning to clean the kitchen…lots of odds & ends from the weekend. I will follow along with these posts but we moved in Sept. & I still feel like everything is still unsettled.

  • Jen W. says:

    I really, really, really need some new reading material. Yes please……

  • Agatha says:

    The stack of books would be lovely!

  • Angie Parker says:

    i would love a chance to win the stack of books if it isn’t too late!

  • Marie says:

    Didn’t clean but took my daughter to the ER for stitches in her foot. it’s been a stressful few weeks.
    Glad that even though you didn’t get to it all you made great head way! Way to go.

  • Teri says:


    I love your descriptions of your days, your self discipline and your devotion to your family:) Most of all, I love your and your husband’s devotion to making your not too common lifestyle. My husband and I have made many unconventional changes so our family can be first and reading your blog really inspires me. Keep up the hard work and keep blogging and spreading the word about all you and your family are about.

  • Charlie Sam says:

    I’m in on the cleaning challenge! Love the post!

  • Traci anderson says:

    So I’m on the one day delay schedule but went through the boys’ toy cabinet and did some major clearing out! My 5 year old is already a hoarder but at least the 2 year old says things like “I don’t want to play with that anymore”. Halejulah! Up next 5 year old bedroom and maybe wrapping some Christmas presents so I can see my closet again!

  • Andrea says:

    Great book selection! My house is in desperate need of cleaning. But with 7 week old twins it’s just not happening right now 😉

  • Lee Anne says:

    I cleaned out the Gift wrap! Sorting, organizing, and throwing out the unusable stuff felt so good!

  • Jill peel says:

    Looks amazing and encouraging–I guess I better get to it! Thanks crystal!

  • Linzi says:

    One of the things I force myself to do everyday is to make my bed. I love the feeling of coming back from work and seeing a pristine bed even if the rest of the house is not too pristine. I have to do everything by my lonesome, so cleaning sometimes has to take the backseat to cooking and taking care of the kids after working outside the house all day. You seem to have accomplished quite a bit in the time you have. I am trying to follow the less is more philosophy and at least I have less clutter to clean this way. I would love to win the books, I have yet to read your book as it always seems o be checked out at my local library.

  • Vanessa C says:

    Good reminder with your cleaning posts. This time of year it’s extra busy. Homeschooling, cleaning, holidays, cookies, church activities.

  • Hannah says:

    I’d love to win! My house needs to be cleaned too. 🙂

  • Kristin Waters says:

    That’s a great stack of books…would love to win!

  • Ashley says:

    This reminds me I really need to dust my fans!

  • Kim says:

    I tried out the new vacuum cleaner I purchased yesterday. I’m very happy with it!

  • Kimmie6974 says:

    Got dish washer unload no loaded back. Did 2 loads of laundry. Troubleshooter my computer. Made my bed. Went to library. Cooked lasagna for my family and my emt family. Would love to win books, always getting new books for the kids…..

  • Joyce says:

    Great job! I did lots of decluttering before Thanksgiving, but of course, things come into the house faster than they go out. We have many family members whose love language is Gifts.

  • Christina says:

    Thank you for encouraging me to get cleaning! We traveled at Thanksgiving and are teaveling again at Christmas while also having a sick 4 month old. (Thankfully he’s feeling , but his night time sleeping is all messed up.) Anyway, I’ve been tied, overwhelmed and unmotivated; this post is exactly exactly what I needed!
    Also, where where did you get your ceiling fan dusted? We desperately need one long enough for our cathedral ceiling fan.

  • Josephine says:

    Thanks for this series! BTW, it was neat to see a reference to your book in the Color of Money column in the Washington Post on Sunday!

  • Abby says:

    Love the feeling of a cleaning job well done!

  • Katie S says:

    I’m inspired to clean my bedroom once my husband heads to work!

  • Amy C. says:

    Is it too late to leave a comment? Hope not! Thanks for being so real and transparent and sharing the parts of your life that many of us try often to hide…like unmade beds and messy closets! 🙂 I would love to say I’m participating in the cleaning challenge, but we’re just trying to stay alive over here. 🙂 We just brought home a 17 month old little boy home 2 weeks ago and we are still in survival mode but once we get settled, I’m going need to revisit these cleaning posts. In the meantime, winning these books would be such a blessing to this tired mama.

  • Kristen @ Celebrate Every Day With Me says:

    We are living with my mom while we build. Considering my clothes are in 2 different bedrooms and on a hallway rack, I could definitely reorganize and simplify. It was nice reading your post!!

  • Candi F says:

    I’ve been working on organizing and cleaning up my craft area, fabrics, yarns, threads and all. Feeling so much better about how it is organized and not just tossed here or there! Yay!

  • Natalie C says:

    Your posts are always so encouraging!! Love seeing how easy it is to be productive if you make a plan and stick to it!!

  • Linda s says:

    Thanks for keeping it real! Your messy room looks really clean compared to mine. Baby steps….baby steps.

  • Elizabeth S says:

    Did I clean my house today? Of course I did. I have 5 kids! We are working on cleaning out bedrooms too. Where does all that stuff come from??????

  • robin Schreiber says:

    I cleaned my kitchen. Made breakfast, made lunches,and got the kids to school and running to the grocery before 8:30. Wrapped Christmas presents and did laundry at lunch during my work from home 9 hour day then took the kids to scouting and home by 9. The deep cleaning will wait for another day!! Thanks for the giveaway!!

  • Anissa says:

    Great job motivating all of us! I worked on laundry and *almost* am all caught up!

  • Mollie Hayes says:

    I’d love to win! Great job with the cleaning!

  • Kaylee V. says:

    I would love to win! I have several of those books on my wish list!!!!

  • Mal says:

    We watched Mom’s Night Out movie just last week with a free Redbox code. Laughed and cried!

  • Kendra says:

    I’d love to win the books!

  • Maria says:

    Love looking at the pictures of your projects.

  • karen b says:

    got all my laundry caught up & cleaned couple other areas……..thosebooks would be fun

  • Jennifer says:

    I love how you keep things real! You are a great inspiration! Thanks.

  • Jocelyn says:

    I worked today, so no specific cleaning for me. I’d love to win the books!

  • Erin says:

    Looks like a great stack of books! 🙂

  • stacy hastings says:

    I must say, I wish my room/closet looked HALF as good as yours did BEFORE you started cleaning! Bedrooms are always on the list to clean and are always the last to get cleaned or have the door shut for another day! I subscribe to your emails and just sat down tonight to catch up on some…so I didn’t get a chance to see the challenge until now. I should definately try to clean bedrooms tomorrow, you just might have inspired me! Thanks for the giveaway, by the way too!

  • Stephanie says:

    The books would be an amazing blessing in a challenging month! Enjoyed the view of your day!

  • Rosario says:

    Wow, you certainly have your hands full! I did a load of laundry before heading to work another during my break and my final load during lunch time. Now that I’m done with dinner I get to put everything away.

  • Vicki Sprain says:

    Wow! You do get a lot done! Today was my day to make a nice homemade meal-garlic chicken, mashed potatoes and green peas with ice cream and cake for dessert! Delicious!

  • Vanessa says:

    Your room looks great now! Yesterday I attacked our bedroom and made some serious organizing progress. It really does help it makes daily/weekly cleaning for me much more reasonable.

  • Jessica S says:

    I love the clean, uncluttered look of your room! Nice work on cleaning the closet too… I’m afraid it would likely take me at least that long to make a dent in my closet. Too often it becomes the home for all “homeless” items in the house!

  • Julie says:

    Thanks for the reminder! The fan blades in our master bathroom desperately need dusting.

  • Melissa says:

    It’s crazy how stuff accumulates. I find it easiest to just keep adding to a box labeled for donation. I put things in it every day. When it’s full it’s time to take it to goodwill.

  • Christy says:

    Last week I tackled my sons closet that was full of misc games, school items, etc and I completely cleaned for the first time in 3 years ;). So today I focused on the “regular” stuff…catch up on laundry, dishes, sweeping and got to spend some much needed quiet with God tonight! I’d love to win that stack of books too…they look great and being on a tight budget I haven’t bought books in awhile. Thx for encouraging some deep cleaning…I need motivation 🙂

  • jenny h says:

    I cleaned the house, but didn’t do much “deep” cleaning. I DID, however, decide to start using the Swiffer dust cloths again, after using a microfiber cloth for three years. After one room, I had to trash it because it was so dirty and dusty. I was highly surprised at this. Has any one else had this happen before?

  • Leah Pipkorn says:

    I would love to win! Thank you for sharing your day with us – you’re an inspiration and a blessing. Now excuse me – I need to go clean my room 😉

  • B Landis says:

    Wish I had time to clean the rooms in our house but with working and getting ready for Christmas, that will have to wait for another day. Thanks for the giveaway.

  • Suzanne says:

    I need to clean the bedrooms too… Maybe on Friday my daughter will actually take a nap so I can attempt it…

  • Kim says:

    I make a list on my Paperless phone app and checked everything off as I went. 🙂
    Cleaned the cat’s litter box
    swept and washed the laundry room floor (where cat box is)
    Washed the bedding and made the beds
    Watered plants/cleaned up our fern
    Tidied up the living room
    wiped down kitchen counters, loaded the dishwasher up
    Made chicken fajitas in the crockpot for dinner and homemade salsa with chips

  • Rebekah says:

    I cleaned my kitchen and gave the kids each one room to really clean. I did some baseboards and made a plan for the next week to really hit other areas as well as possible. There’s a closet begging to be cleaned out but I’m afraid of what’s in it. It’s a BIG job!

  • Sarah says:

    I am nursing a badly sprained ankle, so I didn’t really intend on cleaning… BUT I started physical therapy today and needed to find the orders that the orthopedic doctor gave me to take to the PT (since he was in another town and told me I could choose any place to get PT so I didn’t have to travel). I know I had put them somewhere for “safe keeping”, but that usually translates to “can’t remember where I put them so I wouldn’t lose them” for me. I also didn’t realize that the doctor sent the orders and a report to my primary care doctor who referred me, and she’s in the same building as my PT–so I didn’t even need them! They already had the orders. But, in the process, I got quite a few little places (like my nightstand, computer tray, bookshelf, top of my dresser) organized and cleaned while looking for that one white paper in a sea of other papers. 😀

  • Karen says:

    Looks likes some great books!

  • Ashley says:

    Way to stick with it, Crystal! Your post encouraged me to tackle my desk that has been needing a cleaning for months.

  • Chris says:

    I can’t wait for your next book to come out, Crystal!
    Enjoyed hearing you at Hearts at Home!

  • Susan says:

    I have been trying to keep my house fairly clean from hosting Thanksgiving and so far it has gone pretty well. I hadn’t swept our wood floors for a few days so I did the whole house. Always amazed at how dirty they can get after only a few days.

  • Jennifer says:

    I would love to join you in this challenge. My bedroom is the worst because the best time to do anything is when the baby
    is napping and the sleeps in my room.

  • Laura J says:

    I’d love a copy of your gratitude journal!

  • MichelleH says:

    Wow, you did a great job! I’ve been going through the kids’ clothes and the toy area. I know more is coming in, so some of the old HAS to go out!

  • tracy criswell says:

    I would love to win those books. I try to clean a little bit each day (sometimes it happens and sometimes it doesn’t).

  • Kate says:

    Didn’t clean my house. But would love to curl up with a good book instead.

  • sally mcquaid says:

    another great stack of books. You should start a library

  • april says:

    I finally dealt with a laundry basket of clean odds and ends that as been sitting on my floor for a while. Felt good to get that done, and I was happy to find a few things I had been looking for!

  • So encouraging! Found Christmas stuff I put away after a yard sale so I listed it online to sell!

  • Isabella says:

    I just want to thank you for blogging for us all, and I LOVE your book “say goodbye to survival mode” it has become a sort of get away for me today. I want to get one of you gratitude journals I think it will help out a lot… I found out today some news about my son we will have to see and pray for the best 🙂 I also found out the pain I have been having for the last 5 months is a huge gallstone and I really don’t want to have surgery 🙁 I have been praying and hoping for the best, I have been crying all day so I haven’t been doing house work which needs doing! I Love reading your blog and your book has made a great change in my life I just wanted to thank you for being so honest and impacting my life for the better 🙂 Thank you Crystal!!

    • Jo says:

      I am so sorry about your son and the gallstone!!

      I’d love to send you a gratitude journal as a gift. Can you email me your mailing address? crystal @

    • Tamboliya says:

      I read that there are many alternatives to gall bladder surgery: oral bile acids, Extracorporeal Shock Wave Lithotripsy, Contact Dissolution Therapy, Percutaneous Cholecystostomy, etc.

      I hope this helps! 🙂 🙂

  • Leanne says:

    Great job! Since I work, I started on my bedroom today. Got a good portion of the desk cleared off. Baby steps…..

  • Sonya J. says:

    Our bedrooms are in decent shape. We deep cleaned about a month ago and we have been doing a good job at keeping them that way. I have some other problem areas though and we tackled them today after we completed our homeschooling. I made good progress but will continue tomorrow on other spots.

  • Jen says:

    I have been working on cleaning my kids rooms but it is slow going because we have a baby too. I did get our bedroom worked on yesterday though.

  • Terra Santos says:

    It took me half the day but I helped the kids clean their rooms top to bottom today. Baby steps. Right? 😉

  • Amy says:

    I have SO much cleaning to do–I’m an adjunct college instructor, I’m home with our infant 3 days a week, I took a class this semester–the last one before my thesis!! It’s finals week (as a teacher AND a student) so the end is right around the corner. I’ve greatly neglected cleaning (other than the basic stuff) but would probably neglect it further if I won!! I still want to, though!

  • kathy wallace says:

    You got a lot done in 2 hours and it sounds like your schedule is getting back in order. I started cleaning and got interrupted so many times by the phone or the door, all I got done was the dishes. Maybe I will have better luck tomorrow. One of my favorite things is books, so I am always looking for more.

  • Susan says:

    I organized my 6-month-old’s drawer today. I finally removed all of his summer clothing so his current laundry can fit in the drawer!

  • Tamboliya says:

    Today I accomplished the following: I swept & vacuumed my stairs; swept around my kitty litter box and put out new puppy pads under my pet’s water and food dishes; swept porch; swept stepping stones; put dead leaves into compost bin; cleaned up spilled gravel from sand bags; scooped 2 kitty litter boxes; fed 2 cats twice and refilled water bowls; spent quality time petting & loving on my kitties; I vacuumed my living room; I took 3 trash bags out to dumpster & refilled liners; dealt with emails; downloaded free ebooks; entered contests; listened to sermons while cleaning house; collapsed boxes; checked mail, sorted through it, discarded envelopes and shredded credit card offer; put date on calendar; put frozen turkey and froz. strawberries in fridge to thaw; got dressed; removed autumn decor from patio; made shopping list; put kids’ Bible study supplies into boxes and removed from table, etc.; sewed button back onto dress; cleared stuff off sofa; got sewing misc. off floor; mended greenhouse (cut and taped some clear plastic sheeting over the holes/tears); opened window shades in AM and closed them in PM; I put away socks from laundry basket; I put away colored duct tape from a project; I put away some craft boxes; and mended ripped shirt (sort-of. It looks atrocious); etc.!

  • Sherri says:

    Very inspiring! Great list of books, I’d love to read them 🙂

  • Clarissa says:

    I have been struggling with getting my butt in gear lately with house stuff, though Say Goodbye To Survival Mode has really inspired me! This post also inspires me with how much you have accomplished in one day. Great job!

  • Amy says:

    Tis’ the season for cleaning bedrooms! Both of my girls and I have been tackling their bedrooms. Of course whose room now is a disaster area? That’s right mine. It’s happening tomorrow night!

  • Rachel Luna says:

    I really want to read these books!!

  • Jayne Apperson says:

    No housecleaning for me today. My husband is in the military and my son and I are accompanying him on an out of town trip. Thankful that we can be together after a long deployment and during the holidays though! Would love to win this stack of books!

  • Kelly Hicks says:

    Who doesn’t love a new stack of books???

    What a great way to head into the Christmas season with a bedroom tidy, and all ready for relaxing. Way to go!!

  • Amy says:

    I would love to read those books!

  • Darla Schroeder says:

    We have too much going on this week to do any deep cleaning. I have a bunch of slips of paper with regular weekly housecleaning chores on them. Usually we take a couple of hours on Saturday to do them, but we were gone over the weekend. Tonight, my kids and I set a timer for 30 minutes to see how much we could get done in that length of time and rewarded ourselves with Oreo truffles when we were done! The house looks way better!!

  • Sarah A says:

    What a fun stack of books! Kudos to you for doing a deep clean – my house could use it but with three kids 4 and under and a hubby who travels about 75% of the time for work, not living near any family… I’m giving myself grace and trying to take things slow this Christmas season! Your graciousness and honesty is always such a blessing and encouragement to me. Enjoy the deep clean!

  • Rebecca L says:

    I love reading your stuff. I have neglected my cleaning too.

  • Connie M says:

    We cleaned our living room today and decorated for Christmas. Would love to win this stack of books!

  • Ann-Morgan Krueger says:

    Crystal, way to go cranking through your room and closet…I feel inspired! I feel like I’m living with a pending avalanche of papers, piles of things to do and put away, and half done projects all over. I think I need to take a before (and hopefully an after) picture and see if I can further motivate myself to make some headway! 🙂