Since Beth was born, I have been coasting in survival mode. My days revolved around feeding times, and whatever leaked through in between got done, but not much else. Laundry piled up (why is laundry always the first to try to swallow me whole when I am down and out?), messes began sneakily lurking around, timidly at first and staying in the peripheral but seeing as they were ignored, they gradually grew bolder and brazenly took the whole house hostage. People kept wanting to eat, and dishes didn't wash themselves. Rude, I know.
I looked around at the messes that I had halfheartedly been trying to clean but really pushing to the edges and saw how it has effected our lives. Keith is late for school at least twice a week because he can't find his shoes. While I want to blame him for not putting them away, the fact that his floor and his bed have become invisible due to the encroaching mess monster sort of makes me feel responsible for his tardiness. He has also been late turning his homework in a few times because he can't find his homework due to the lack of organization we have going on. Faye has become a middle child, which pains me, because I am a middle child, and I vowed I would never do that to one of my kids. Tempers are raw, as is always the case when chaos abounds. I have noticed our moods mirror the state of the house. If it is clean, we are happy and there is peace. When it is grumpy and trashy, that is exactly how we feel.
Seeing these things, recognizing them and wanting to put a stop to all of the above, I armored up with cleaning supplies and set out to vanquish the beast that has taken our rooms and moods hostage. Much to Beth's dismay. She was loving the constant attention, and I have to say, I was too. But there comes a time when priorities must be set to set things right, even if it is only for a day or two.
And so, the kids room was first. I would have no more of the tardiness or failure to hand in school work. I began on Saturday by cleaning out the drawers and closet. It was finally time to pack away clothes from two years ago that has been lurking in the drawers and taking up too much space.
And that is all I accomplished on Saturday.
It was quite a feat, actually, although it sounds small.
There is now a mountainous laundry basket, buried beneath the clothes and ready to erupt, sitting in the hallway, laughing as it trips everyone who dares walk past it.
Working in two hour increments every four hours or so really makes progress that much harder. Not to mention hanging onto that elusive motivation! But feeding and caring for the baby can't be put on hold. And so things take longer. But I am not complaining, because let's be honest here, who doesn't love an excuse to stop every now and again?
Today I armed myself with two garbage sacks and set about to de-junk. Don't tell the kids, but the toys they don't play with are getting sent to the DI. And the full paper sized confetti they have decorating their floor is going the way of the dump.
While cleaning, I set up a study area for Keith. He wants me to make a sign to hang above his desk that reads "Keith's Office." Never again will his homework be lost. There is a designated spot for it on his bulletin board. He brought in his favorite books and put them on his bookshelf, and he is very excited for the study area. I only hope it actually gets put to use!
Around lunch time we did take a break and played on the trampoline for an hour or so. It is the first time the kids have ever played with me on it, as I was pregnant before, and then had to wait for the exercise ban to be lifted. Keith loved it and begged me to play with him out there again tomorrow. It makes me so happy when I can go out and exercise with the children whilst disguising it as play.
And then back to it, more cleaning.
It was an all day project.
Now that their room is done, I get to start on the hallway, and the Laundry Basket of Everest.
I can only handle so much organizing in a day, and frankly, my family can't handle me being so distracted and away from them for that long, either.
Besides, it is dinner time. The family doesn't like to feed itself. And those dishes don't wash themselves, either.