This theme seems to be a bit on the controversial side, but, as it is reoccurring I am going once more into the breach, dear friends.
It boils down to: people with enough time to get things done, more resources, and poor excuses have to stop asking me to do things for them. I am going to throw in complaining too. Today I spent hours cleaning at a friend’s house. She has ‘issues’ with social skills, in my opinion, but I have received a few gifts and feel obligated.
It is unfair to compare life challenges with others, but my nature and ‘can do mantra’ makes my dander rise. If I didn’t hear about it, I don’t think that I would care, but I do. Before this turns into a grudge match I need to set a premise for my argument. I spent my formative house wife years in Portugal. Portuguese women would never be caught with a messy home. It is unthinkable. I also grew up in a messy home and it always bothered me as a child. I hate clutter. I am known to give away usable items because I can’t stand the sight of them. I also hate knickknacks.
That all stated: I spent several hours today helping woman X clean her room. It was messy and cluttered, but that is reasonable. However, it was visibly dust littered. I actually had to clean out the vacuum as it sprayed dust because it was so full.
I am facing this problem here at home. My hubby dear can not get his sh** together. I asked him to fold and store two baskets of laundry at 12 p.m.; it is still on the sofa.
All of these people (and some other neighbors not included) have a working spouse and many of them ‘work out of the home’ or stay home with kids. I am teacher. It is not glamorous, but I do have to have my ducks in a row. I have to do it with little prep time and I have to be efficient.
I understand that little kids can be hard. I spent the day with a 2-year-old in tow, as Mom didn’t have childcare lined up. However, things can get done. I am going to explain my routine from the toddler/baby years.
- Get up and get food going.
- Get the kitchen in order while child is eating.
- Pick a morning show for the child.
- Use this 1/2 hour to make beds, store pj’s, pick up what is left from the night.
- Activity OUT of the house (this is a critical step). It tires the children. Even if it is just taking them to the Y and letting them run for an hour, it is worth it.
- Run your errands. I know, schlepping kids sucks, but I have done it using public transportation.
- Lunch. Let the kiddos wander while you make it. I used to switch out toys every two weeks or so.
- Nap!!! Even if it is ‘quiet time’ in a room. Set a timer.
- Nap is all you: No resting. Nap = clean up. Pick up everything lying around. I had baskets for each child. Nap is your golden clean up time.
- Afternoon: I won’t lie; afternoons are long. I almost always had a plan. Defaults are outside time, even in the snow.
- Kids will want down time after some hard playing. TV and books are your friend. Make sure that this a ‘Mommy is busy’ time.
- Wind down to dinner.
- Husband arrives.
- Baths, consistent schedule, cry it out.
- This is the part no one wants to say: bedtime is really clean the house time. I always slept better with a tidy home.
- Maybe tv now or spouse time.
Do it all again. I lived like this for 10 years. Numbers 3-10 are out of my babysitters handbook. If you have a sitter or work you must keep the schedule going. I also add a full morning of scrubbing every Saturday. I also use #13 for an hour at the gym.
No one said it was easy.