Y’all. I like to pretend that I have my ducks in a row and I can fool people into thinking that I’m totally put together and calm.
But the ducks, they aren’t in a row. They are scattered every fricking where, creating havoc and mayhem and it’s the middle of the summer when the schedule is more relaxed. Any friend I have that has walked through my door will tell you exactly this. My house is often chaotic at best.
Trust me when I say it just gets uglier from here. The ducks invite their squirrel friends and we have one big gong show.
For the last four hockey seasons, I have done a deep and massive purge and clean of my house around the end of August. There’s something about the beginning of the school year that gets me wanting to organize all the things. And this mostly keeps our heads above water until Christmas when I have time to do another go round.
This year, I am trying to do better. How you ask? I decided to take it one task at a time. And my quick cleaning schedule was born.
For me? I started with the bathrooms. It always makes the biggest impact to me.
You see, when I was a kid, Sunday evenings were spent making sure the house was clean from top to bottom. Dad would start in the bathrooms while he instructed us to go and clean our rooms. Then he would make his way upstairs until the entire house had been tidied, swept and cleaned. And we heard about it if the rooms were not cleaned to his satisfaction. My dad has a pretty good holler on him, so there was no hiding stuff under beds or behind doors. We got away with nothing when it came to Sunday night housekeeping. The bathrooms in a farm house always take a massive beating. The amount of farm dirt that gets rinsed off in them is unparalleled.
I don’t think I need to point out that I don’t have hours on a weekend to devote to this method. My modus operandi has been to ignore things until they got beyond irritating and then go on a cleaning binge of whatever area was nagging at me. It has been a one room at a time sort of deal for the last four years. This is not conducive to my mental state.
At first I felt like I was excused because I had three small kids. There’s just no way to keep a house clean when little hands are getting into everything the minute you turn your back on them. But in the last year or so we’ve turned that corner and I don’t have small kids anymore. I have kids. And those kids are capable (whether they like it or not) of cleaning up after themselves properly. Boy #1 does his own laundry at this point. Mostly. He still gets help with folding but everything else is his domain when it comes to his clothes.
So last week I decided that I would do one house keeping chore a night. Wednesday nights are bathroom nights because HockeyDad is out at training and I can use proper bathroom cleaners that would otherwise trigger a migraine for him.
Thirty minutes later, my bathrooms were clean. Not bad at all. Thursday night? Living room and kitchen. It’s one big open area, so the boys tidied up their toys while I scrubbed and tidied the kitchen counters. Then it was a matter of running the vacuum and the steam mop. Done.
This weekend, we found ourselves at home on Sunday rather than at the cottage and let me tell you, this momma went on a tear. Rooms were cleaned, things were scrubbed, areas were organized. I was ruthless. Clearly my children haven’t learned much about self preservation because rather than clear out, they hunkered down in the middle of whatever area I had just cleaned.
Now, see, that just makes them easy targets. They got instructions. I made demands. And when that didn’t work, there was a discussion about just how tough their lives could be.
For those of you keeping score this means:
Thursdays: Kitchen/Living Room
The hope is that by starting now I’ll be in a routine by the time hockey season hits. Also, the intention is to avoid scheduling any chores on weekends because it’s just not practical for me. So the Sunday free for all will have to happen on a weeknight. But you get the idea. I need to consider a similar approach to cooking as well. Freezer cooking only gets me so far and doesn’t get me baking enough to keep me happy.
So we’ll take cleaning and cooking one weeknight at a time.
Y’all if I can keep this up, I might actually get my adulting privileges.
There are privileges to being an adult, right? There’s got to be some benefit to this insanity.
Regardless, I’ll have a clean(er) house if even for a short time. That’s a win in my books.
See you at the rink,