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Following FlyLady's BabySteps - Day 19, Day 20 and Day 21

Updated on November 1, 2013
Thank goodness FlyLady finally adresses laundry.  Mine was beginning to pile up.
Thank goodness FlyLady finally adresses laundry. Mine was beginning to pile up.

When we first started our BabyStep a few short weeks ago, I was overwhelmed by her website. There were so many unknown terms and acronyms it made my head spin. I wanted her to use simple terms that I could understand, not overwhelm me more with a new language. I realize now that her terminology is just part of FlyLady’s brand of homespun humor. Is it necessary? Well no, but it is a bit more fun to go say, “I’m going to do my Boogie now.” Rather than, “I’m going to go throw away some useless garbage.”

Demystifying FlyLady Terminology

FlyLady's Acronyms

  • BO (Born Organized) - I’ve always thought of BO as Body Odor, but in FlyLady land, it’s a person who was born with the talent of organization. Obviously all FlyBabies are not BO’s or they wouldn’t need they need FlyLady.
  • CHAOS (Can’t Have Anyone Over Syndrome) - Talk about the perfect acronym. Its true, when your home is in chaos, the last thing you want is to have anyone over. Heck, sometimes you don’t even want to be there.
  • FLY (Finally Loving Yourself) - The acronym for FLYing was not actually coined by FlyLady her self. One of the members of her original e-mail group gave it to her. It is quite fitting though since FlyLady makes it very clear that she wants FlyBabies to take control of their homes and learn to love themselves.
  • PODA (Parade Of Daily Adventures) - Your PODA is a daily to do list. They are things you need to do each day to keep on track and keep your house and life organized.
  • STUFF (Something That Undermines Family Fun) - Dishes, laundry, and cleaning all make up the STUFF that needs to be done before you can have fun with your family. Fl

FlyLady Terminology

  • Hot Spot - A Hot Spot is a place in your home that if left alone it will be overcome with junk. Our biggest Hot Spot is a corner of our kitchen counter. Mail, homework, keys, tools, and toys all seem to collect there. FlyLady suggests working on Hot Spots twice a day for 2 minutes each time. It really isn’t much of a time investment, but those 4 little minutes really do keep the Hot Spot under control.
  • 5 Minute Room Rescue - Setting a timer for 5 minutes and cleaning in the worst room in the house is a Room Rescue. After my experience, I have found that a lot really can be achieved in only 5 minutes. Although, I do break FlyLady’s rule here. I do the room I want to do, not the worst one in the house. It works for me, and FlyLady is very clear to let us FlyBabies know that we have to do what works for us.
  • Zone - FlyLady has broken the house into 5 Zones. Each week FlyBabies work on the Zone of the week cycling back to each Zone after only 5 weeks. For example, last weeks Zone was the main bath and one extra room. It’s a great way to work your way around your entire house with out feeling like you need to do it all at once.
  • Kelly’s Missions - These are short little tasks that are supposed to take less than 10 minutes and are focused on the Zone of the week. It seems to me that most of these missions are things that are needed, but not very frequently. Last week, one of the missions was to go through and throw away all the old and icky make up. My friend and I have really liked the Kelly’s missions because they are not only small tasks, but they also make a big difference.
  • 27 Fling Boogie - Ok, this one sounds gross. Its really not though. All a 27 Fling Boogie entails is going into a specific room, trash bag in hand, and walking around until you have found 27 things to either throw way, donate, or move. For example, you may go into the toy room and pick out 27 old toys to donate to charity.

Those are just some of the main terms and acronyms that FlyLady uses. Yes there are more, but we are taking BabySteps here. I don’t want to overwhelm you.


For Day 19 our job was to continue what we had been up to that point and to complete a short reading assignment. It was a testimonial. I have to admit, I hate the testimonials. It seems like the FlyLady e-mails and BigTent are bombarded with them. By this point in the game, I get it. The world thinks FlyLady is great, and she is helping so many people. My guess is that most subscribers to the e-mails click delete when they see a testimonial, but I will continue to do my FlyBaby duty and read them for the duration of the BabySteps.

My son's closet.  It's like our giant junk drawer.  I was ready to change that.
My son's closet. It's like our giant junk drawer. I was ready to change that.

I spent my 15 minutes of decluttering time in my 4 year old son’s closet. His closet really had just become a place to store stuff. There were still some baby clothes in it and a box from when we had moved into our house 5 years ago. I knew it would take several days, but I was ready to tackle it. I wanted to give him back that space so he could keep some of his things in there if he wanted.

After only 15 minutes, its starting to look much better.
After only 15 minutes, its starting to look much better.

He and I went through the closet for 15 minutes selecting things to keep, donate or pitch. We made quite a bit of progress in there, but as I suspected we were nowhere close to done. I didn’t mind though, I just closed the closet back up knowing that I would return the next day to work on it some more.

My friend also had a productive FlyLady day. She got moving first thing in the morning, and got a lot done.

“I made my bed right away. Cleaned out my sink and shined it, did a load of laundry, schooled Meggie, worked in my bathroom a bit...and I did make my list, then we went shopping.....came back, did a room rescue in the toy room and then did the 27 fling boogie in there...I have a pile that we are going to donate tomorrow. Then I cleaned my powder room too.”


Finally! Laundry! It’s really a good thing my friend and I didn’t wait almost three weeks into our BabySteps to touch our laundry. It could have been a monster pile that’s for sure. For Day 20 FlyLady wants us to start adding one load of laundry to our daily routines. The load is to be done from start to finish all in that same day. She says that if we do it this way we never get behind on laundry. I imagine that is true. The way I do laundry now, is quite different. I wash and dry it all on one day and then fold and put away throughout the week. I think this may work better.

After spending a total of 30 minutes over two days the closet almost looked like a closet again.
After spending a total of 30 minutes over two days the closet almost looked like a closet again.

My son and I headed back into his room today to work on his closet some more. After another 15 minutes, it was almost done. We got to the box of things I had never unpacked and I looked inside to find that everything in it could just be donated.

My friend did well again today. She really is the over achiever and goes above and beyond what FlyLady asks us to do. Me? Eh, well I do what needs to be done.


For Day 21 FlyLady wanted us to do another reading assignment. “Ask FlyLady” is a section of her website where everyday FlyLady answers people’s questions. I read it, didn’t really do much for me. I’m more about action at this point. We have been doing this for three weeks now, and I can see results. I want to do more, not read more. Although I do have to admit, it’s a great tool and FlyLady answers some great questions.

After the third day of organizing my son's closet, it was done.  Not bad for only 45 total minutes.
After the third day of organizing my son's closet, it was done. Not bad for only 45 total minutes.

It was my final day on my son’s closet. Most of the things that were still in there were to be donated. It was an awesome feeling to have it done. Both my friend and I love the 15 minutes of decluttering. It is enough time to really accomplish something but not so much time that you get burnt out. We both admitted to each other that in the past we would just decide to do a task and then work on it until it is done. So, its really pretty freeing to know that if you just do a little every day, great things will eventually happen.

Three weeks…complete!

Wow! Its hard to believe that we have been FLYing for three weeks already. When my friend and I started doing these FlyLady BabySteps we were doubtful, but we knew we needed to do something. And guess what? It’s working. I’ve even recruited a few of my friends into the FlyLady fold. This article is for them. I remember starting out and seeing all the terms and acronyms. It overwhelmed me. But I say to them, or anyone else who is thinking about trying FlyLady’s BabySteps, take a leap of faith, arm yourself with some bleach, and go shine that sink.


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