There is *usually* no question as to what season it is in Michigan.  There are days that fool you… those very rare 60 degree days in February or the (sort-of) random April snowstorm.  But for the most part, snow and constant grayness= winter, rain and euphoria=spring, humid as heck=summer and breezy and colorful=fall.  It is all quite basic.

I grew up in Michigan, and as a result my body has learned to expect these changes.  Although it is going to be 80 degrees out today, it feels like fall.  The sunlight is changing, there are a few leaves on the ground, there is a slight nip to the air and I feel like I may puke.

Yes, you read right.  Nausea.  NO I AM NOT PREGNANT.  But my body is a little confused.  You see, the last fall seasons that I can remember included “morning” (HA!) sickness.  (With Benjamin, I was so sick that I lost 15 pounds in my first trimester.  It was a profound experience and it was awful.)  The other two included an infant and I honest-to-goodness remember very little of them.  If the clouds are just so and the breeze hits from a certain angle, I suddenly feel ill.  Then I remember that it is all in my head, laugh at myself and move on.  Until I think about macaroni and cheese and it is back.  Then I look at my kids, realize they are both outside of my womb and all is right again.  Phantom morning sickness.  It is a cruel, cruel joke.  And yes, I am SURE it is phantom.

Also changing is the season of life in general.  Ella is starting preschool, Scott is going back to teaching, fall is about to get all nutty.  I am taking this opportunity to whip us all into shape.  This may take the other members of the family by surprise, but I am trying to be subtle.

Enter the Master Plan.  This includes job/school schedules (mostly my unorthodox schedule), activities, chores and meals.  You see, Scott and I were married for 9 years before we had kids.  That makes for a lot of “whatever” when it comes to cleaning and grocery shopping and “whatever” is a pretty hard habit to break.  This past spring, I came across this weekly chore list that seemed pretty doable.  I started in on it and found that our home was running much more smoothly. Then summer hit, we basically moved out for a couple of months and we are back to square one, but with a lot more energy this time around (except when that fall breeze blows and I suddenly feel exhausted).

The Master Plan starts with school and work schedules and I am planning chores and meal types around that.  For example, Wednesdays are going to be out of control and will likely include my kids eating at my parents’ house.  Therefore, every Tuesday dinner needs to be large enough that I can take leftovers for 3 of us on Wednesday.  Thursday includes gymnastics class for Ella, so we will need a simple or freezer meal on that day… every week.  Hopefully, this will also make grocery shopping more streamlined and predictable.  This may not be a new concept to some of you, but again, 9 years with no kids… enough said.

Fall will include canning and freezer cooking.  I may start with some soup this weekend since it is one of the last quiet ones we will have in a long time.  We have tons of freezer space just asking to be filled.

So far, I am adjusting and re-implementing the cleaning schedule.  I found that it takes a good month to get in the groove of it and feel like it is making a difference.  The more used to it I am before chaos hits, the better.

That’s the plan, folks.  And hopefully all of this will mean that I will still have time to craft in the evenings.  The Chaotic Cat school bag is in the works… hoping to reveal it soon.  Keep me in your thoughts as I try to work out the fabric and applique scheme in the next day or two.  ( :