2 Days to a Clean Diener Home – That’s Neat!

Oh my, where has summer gone!?  Who knows. Who cares! I finally have a weekend of no obligations and nowhere to be! Normally I would take this opportunity to do some extra relaxing but that just can’t be the case. After the basement flood in June, a super busy July and now Brandon gone for August – the house chores have been side lined and there is much to be done. This house ain’t gonna clean itself. So, I have created my 2 Days to a Clean Diener Home Personal Challenge.



                Kitchen/Dining Area

  • Clear Counter Clutter
  • Organize Old Mail and Paperwork
  • Wipe Down Counters
  • Wipe Down Cabinets
  • Clean Inside and Outside Of Fridge, Stove, Dishwasher And Microwave
  • Clean Table and Chairs – Set Table
  • Sweep and Mop
  • Clean Dog Bowls
  • Clean Dishes and Sink
  • Change Paper On Top Of Cabinets
  • Windex Windows
  • Clean/Dust Light Fixtures
  • Sanitize Light Switches

                Living Room/Hallway/Entryway

  • Pick Up Toys
  • Dust Entertainment Center
  • Wipe Down Table and Shelf
  • Wash Throw Blankets
  • Sweep and Mop
  • Clean/Dust Light Fixture
  • Dust Shelf in Hallway
  • Windex Windows
  • Clean TV Screen
  • Pick up Shoes in Entryway
  • Sanitize Light Switches


  • Scrub Toilet Inside and Out, Add Bleach Tablet
  • Scrub Sink and Mirror
  • Scrub Shower and Tub
  • Empty Trash
  • Empty Laundry Basket
  • Sweep and Mop
  • Clean/Dust Light Fixture
  • Organize Linen Closet
  • Wipe Down Cabinet
  • Sanitize Light Switch



                Master Bedroom

  • Wash Bed Clothes
  • Dust/Clean Night Stands, Jewelry Cabinet and Dresser
  • Organize Closet
  • Bag Old/Never Worn Clothes for Donation
  • Windex Window
  • Clean/Dust Light Fixture
  • Sanitize Light Switch
  • Vacuum
  • Febreze Mattress

               Vivian’s Room

  • Sort Toys and Stuffed Animals for Keep and Donation
  • Clean Bed Clothes
  • Wipe Down Night Stand
  • Organize Closet
  • Vacuum
  • Windex Window
  • Clean Light Fixture
  • Clean Walls and Door

              Landon’s Room

  • Clean Bed Clothes
  • Wipe down Surfaces
  • Organize Toys
  • Windex Window
  • Sweep and Mop
  • Clean Light Fixture



  • Make FOOD
  • Relax!



Oofta! There you have it. I’ve got a full weekend ahead of me but once I start I can plow through these tasks quickly. With busy lives it’s easy to set your things down and go about your night – this is what creates the clutter. While I clean, I will take time to find better organizing solutions that fit OUR needs. What can I do to make separating the mail, picking up toys and cleaning the toilet “fun”? Meanwhile, I created a weekly cleaning chart for the family. If each of us pitches in 20 minutes a night when we get home we will create an enjoyable space to share. It’s nothing elaborate but it doesn’t have to be! Print it off – throw it in a frame and mark things off with a dry erase marker! Easy enough to make yourself but I’ll put a link below the picture to download the excel file.

Diener Family Chore Chart


Family Chore Chart

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An unfinished update.

I really don’t even know where to start. The beginning of the summer has just flown by and we are in the middle of so many projects. The kitchen is still in need of a second coat of white on the walls, crown molding on the cabinets, quarter round on the bottom of cabinets, cabinet touch ups and finishing decorations. I still need to finish painting the fireplace surround for the living room and decorate. The upstairs bedrooms need the floors done and the whole top floor needs the trim cut, painted and installed. Oofta! My body hurts just thinking of all the work that needs to be done, and that’s only the upstairs!

We bought our house as a foreclosure and the previous owners took everything, including the plants from the yard. Each year Brandon and I talk about doing something the make the outside more inviting but it always seems to get pushed aside. Being that we are in Wisconsin we only have a few months of the year to get things accomplished on the outside, so begins the process of doing some landscaping. We wanted something substantial, with thought.

Before: {no judging!!}

Front Yard Landscaping Before | Fairhome Road       20140526_071828

Right now: {the day before the basement flood!}

Side Yard During | Fairhome Road Front Yard During | Fairhome Road


I wish I was able to show you a finished product but this will have to do for now. Like every other project something always comes up and puts us at a stand still. Our town is built on very wet swampy ground and on June 1st we received 4 inches of rain in a very short period of time. Unfortunately our sump pump was unable to keep up with the amount of water and our lower level was covered in water. {It was a wonderful surprise at 4:00 a.m.} Brandon and I spent all day Sunday trying to suck water out of the carpet with a wet vac and a shampooer. We thought we were doing a really good job until I pulled a corner of the carpet back, ugh. The amount of stress I felt at that time was so overwhelming, all I could think about was the other projects we had going on in the house and the amount of money it would take to get everything fixed! I would never wish it on anyone. Luckily Brandon and I remembered about the sump pump overflow policy we had added to our home owners insurance!! {best $100 a year we have ever spent!} A very nice man from our insurance company came out right away on Monday and we had a check for the repairs in our mailbox by Wednesday. I honestly can not thank them enough for being so easy to work with and treating us like we were important.

   Basement Flood - Landon's Room | Fairhome Road Basement Flood - Office | Fairhome RoadBasement Flood - Living Room | Fairhome Road

I spent Monday afternoon removing the carpet and padding! We had always talked about putting tile in the basement – its just going to be happening sooner that we expected. This is not a project that Brandon and I are going to tackle ourselves. We have a wonderful friend that has been installing flooring for almost 15 years that we have entrusted to do the installation. I am so relieved that we dont have to stress about doing the job right and can go back to focusing on the projects we have started. I pledge to work my buns off during the time I have to get things complete. Brandon seems to be getting frustrated with the amount of stuff going on, I think I owe it to home to get something complete.

To me – This is beautiful:

Basement Flood - Dumpster | Fairhome Road

Sometimes {and only sometimes} I think… what have I got myself into. I just need to remember how beautiful it will be when it is finished. Here hoping my next home update is full of finishedness! {haha… but seriously}

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Texas Caviar

I have been so busy lately I haven’t been able to make a post in awhile. I figured it would be a perfect time to post about a favorite that has became something I frequently make for at home and parties.

I had my first glorious taste of Texas Caviar when a co-worker, Jodi, brought some to work! I am so thankful she introduced me to this. Texas Caviar goes perfect with just chips but is great with chicken, stuffed in a grilled portabella mushroom cap, on top of tacos and anything else your heart desires. You will see me reference back to this recipe quite often when I make dinners or coordinate family get-togethers. It easy, super yummy and usually the first thing gone among a group of people.

Texas Caviar | Fairhome Road


  • 1 Cup Olive Oil
  • 1 Cup Rice Vinegar
  • 1 Heaping Tablespoon Sugar
  • 1/2 Tea Spoon Garlic Powder
  • 2 Celery Stalks
  • 1/2 Bag Red, Yellow and Red Sweet Peppers {2 large peppers of any kind would work too}
  • 1 Large Red Onion
  • 2 Jalapenos {seeded}
  • 1 Can Corn
  • 1 Can Black Beans Rinsed
  • 1 Can Black Eyed Peas
  • 1 Can White Beans

I always start with heating together the oil, vinegar, garlic powder and sugar. You don’t need to boil but you’ll want all the sugar to dissolve and then set it aside to cool.

While your oil/vinegar mixture is cooling small chop all your veggies and drain/rinse your corn and beans. Simply combine everything and pour the cooled oil/vinegar mixture over the top. For the best results you’ll want to make this the night before serving, this way all the flavors will be well combines BUT I have only had about 2-3 hours from start to serve and it was just fine. Make sure you refrigerate!

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