Friday, October 03, 2008
I have been thinking about housecleaning recently. Probably because I am doing a lot of it, and its taking much of my time, and I am thinking, hmmmm, is this important? Is this a good use of my time? Am I being efficient? Am I turning into a woman who picks up after all the boys in her family, and eventually feels resentful for it? Am I teaching my son about cleanliness, or just becoming obsessive over something I can actually have control over. In a weird way it feels like housecleaning is something I am doing for myself, when all the rest of my time I am managing, feeding, educating, playing, holding, comforting etc. my boys. To be in a clean house feels good. But man, it takes a lot of work! There is something satisfying about doing it though, and finishing the day of madness with a little order here and there.
Another odd thing is that now that I have two kids, when I should be the busiest in my life, my house is actually cleaner than it has ever been. (Knock on wood, there is no guarantee it will stay that way... but lets just imagine...)
So here's my p...... I just have to say that in our family the housework is shared. We all live here and so we all do our part. My husband is truly a partner in this. Until recently he did all the laundry, the dishes and as much of the house work as me. But then, we were both working...and to be honest often our house was pretty messy, but seeing as we weren't here all say we could ignore it, and just get by on 'emergency' cleaning. But now I am here all day, playing, eating, cooking, and trying to enjoy my life without loosing my mind...and so, the standards have changed. Also Husband is in school full time and working part time, so if I want things clean I realize its up to me...for now.
So, we haven't much reduced the amount of fun, but we have been able to keep on top of some of the cleaning things and its feeling really good. If I could have talked to myself a couple years ago when M was small, these are the tips I would have given myself.
1) if laundry is done, the whole house feels much, much cleaner. Actually if the laundry is done, you can pretty much say your ho use is clean, and go out for a treat. So, if there's only one bit of housecleaning I would do each day it would be laundry. Cloth diapering has really helped with this as it forces me into the laundry room everyday, and while there why not do an other load while I'm at it.
2) Something I learned from Flylady (an internet site to help ladies feel good and keep their houses clean.) Is to choose one small chore each day, and to NOT DO ANYTHING MORE. Its actually hard to hold oneself back once you get started, but if you burn out today, you wont keep it up tomorrow. So, I choose 4 rooms to clean 4 days of the week (the 5th day we bake and have fun.) They are really small things, and some are broken into two tasks to do on alternating weeks. And I only do those tasks on those days. Even though the 4 rooms are not all the house, amaznigly the rest gets clean. Also I dont try to do the whole room, but choose the thing that makes me feel most satisfied when its done - for instance I dont do the living room - I just vow to vacuum it once a week. (may seem like not much to you, but just this has been a biggy for me)
3)for the bathroom buy a canister of disinfectant wipes. Yes I know they are not all eco mamma, which is lovely, but to be honest now my boy is going on the toilet and touching everything in the room, it nice to know things are clean, and for this time in our lives anything to make it easier to clean that toilet seat, the better. These things have saved me.
oh, and thats the pesto I made.