Monday, January 28, 2013

Don't Judge Your Beginning to Someone Else's Middle

I've read a lot of posts lately about when the house will be clean? When you have children, whether it's one or fifteen (sometimes it feels like fifteen here) it's overwhelming. Arguments can be made about which is harder, stay at home moms or working moms? I don't think it does matter, kids make messes. A lot of messes. All the time. All day. Even when you think they are "sleeping".
I love to read other mom blogs, organizing blogs, food blogs, basically any view point of things related to the home. One of the blogs/websites I found a few years ago was the FlyLady. I instantly was hooked on her methodology. But, I only got as far as shining the sink and making the bed. I had good intentions, really I did. That brings me back to the fifteen kids. My kids had other intentions, like making messes. But, the two things that stuck were so helpful for me. I found that if I could just make sure the dishes were done at night and shine my sink, I was a step ahead in the morning and not overwhelmed, well, not as much. 
I also have made my bed EVERY morning for the last five years or so. It makes an even bigger difference for me. I love seeing that one thing I have accomplished throughout the day.
I do make a very big effort to keep our house clean and picked up. Why? Well, for starters, Brad likes it that way. He gets a little irritated when it's not. I have also noticed that when I have at least the downstairs cleaned up, the kitchen is clean when the kids come home from school, there are no piles of things cluttering up the visual space in our common area, the attitude of everyone is different. It's more calm and I can focus on them. I do stay at home, so my time structure is different from some. I'm not saying it's always like that, but it's so much easier when it is.
Now before you roll your eyes and think I'm bragging about a clean house, this is what the upstairs looks like most of the time:
The boys room - you can hardly walk in there without seriously injuring yourself by stepping on legos or some other small toy. I don't think they even know the clothes are supposed to go in the dresser. 
Anna and Piper's room. Ditto for the girls, most of the time it's a struggle to find Piper's bed.
So what's the point? Well, you have to pick your battles. I choose to focus on the main areas and let the kids take care of their own things. I do help them out from time to time, for instance, Hailey and I spent several hours cleaning and rearranging the Jack and Anderson's room. I haven't gotten to the girl's room yet. This might not be acceptable to some people, but they don't live in my home. I've figured out what works for us and I still strive to do better, but for now, it is what it is.  And the friends that I do have don't mind either. I know when they step into my home, they're not judging me, we are all in different stations in life. I read a quote somewhere, "Don't judge your beginning to someone else's middle" How perfect.
While this post kind of rambles on and on, I just want to encourage other moms that are struggling with "when" it will all be clean, do what you can, and don't forget to enjoy those little people that are making all the messes.

~ Misty

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