I'm in, but I'm in transition of becoming someone like June Cleaver. June Cleaver is my idol
This is long. Sorry. (Before pics at bottom--"after" pics tomorrow).
I've never been able to keep house. Always piles of dishes in the sink--so much that there is not one clean utensil or bowl/plate. That's when I'd wash one spoon and eat cold spaghettio's out of the can because I didn't want to do the dishes. And I can't tell you how many times I brushed off or even vacumed my bed sheets (dog hair or cookie crumbs or whatever) instead of changing the sheets.
October 2008 I had had enough. Enough. I can clean and organize. No problem. Keeping
it clean is the hard part. I've been doing very well since October, with the exception of Christmas (there's still dried cookie icing on my dining room floor....but I have swept quite a few times).
My mom is a hoarder. The woman has like 5 kitchen tables, 40 pots/pans, 200 cups, 2 sets of bedroom furnitue and the list goes on (just her living there). If she finds a good deal, she'll buy it and take it home. There is no place to sit. Every surface is covered with crap. Each dining room chair, each table, couche, recliner. The sink is piled, every.inch.of.counter.space. is cluttered. Beyond cluttered. I think there's something dead in her fridge. The bathroom counter....OMG. She must have 10 bottles EACH of a product sitting on the counter. She can't park her car in the garage because she has more furniture out there (can't pass up those good deals!).
I have panick attacks in her house. My life is stressed at my house when it starts
to get like that. So, I've been much better since October. I do have before photo's--and I can get after photo's when I go home tonight. (Before photo's at end of this post).
I kept my house clean for one month--the month of October. Now, I can't have it any other way. I feel like I can't breath if the counters start piling up. It still gets out of control and I have to take more time to correct it, whereas if I spend a little time each day and keep it tidy, it's no big deal.
I don't have a dishwasher
It's very easy to let the dishes pile up. I make sure all dishes are washed/dried/put away before I go to sleep. In the morning, I make some dishwater. I make breakfast for dd. Dishes go into the water, get a quick swoosh, rinse and are put on the drying towel. Those same dishes are used for her lunch...repeat the cycle until they're put away at the end of day. This has worked very well for me.
I like to race myself with housework. I have to make it fun somehow I guess. My kitchen floor was disgusting today. Food spilled, dried pumpkin splashes from pumpkin pancakes I made, grapes dried on the floor, mud from outside, etc. Disgusting. I've been known to let it go that way for a looooooong time
I hate mopping. I usually mop when I HAVE to or once every 2+ months. I set my kitchen timer for 10 minutes and raced the clock. I finished in 12 minutes. Next time, I'll shoot for exactly 10 to beat my record. Now I know how long it takes and it will be easier to make myself do it more often.
I race myself with all sorts of things--cleaning the bathroom, the dishes, folding/putting away laundry, etc. I'll either set it for the time I want to stop (i.e., I will only do dishes for 20 minutes, even if they're not done, and then I will play with dd) or the time I want to beat (I want to finish
the dishes in this amount of time). I guess for me, the kitchen timer keeps me on track. It keeps my mind/body focussed on what I want to accomplish, instead of getting side tracked with other things. And as soon as that small task is accomplished, it's play time for awhile.
Originally Posted by Devaskyla
I looked at flylady, but just couldn't get past the clean sink thing. Honestly, I'm thrilled if one of my sinks is empty. I have absolutely no counter space in the kitchen, so dirty dishes go in the sink. And we always have dirty dishes.
I think my main problem with cleaning is that it's so disheartening. You spend so much time & energy,*hours* sometimes, cleaning something out & within a few hours or days, it looks like you never touched it. It honestly makes me want to cry sometimes. I literally spent 4 hours one day cleaning out the floor & hanging part of our front closet. I got rid of 2 bags of stuff to be donated, a bag of garbage, plus some other stuff that wouldn't fit in a bag. A week later, you couldn't tell I'd done anything. It just makes me feel like I shouldn't even bother, since it won't make a difference anyway.
I'll try to take some pictures of our 'clean' bedroom tomorrow. I wish I'd had some of it over Christmas, after my mom brought in a car load of stuff. There was literally a little path from the bed to the door & a couple of spots to put your feet to get to my dresser. The rest of the floor was covered in bags of presents & clothes, plus my laundry & ds2's bike. It's much, much better now. There's space for the kids to play!
It's only me and a toddler (and her dad who comes over and makes more messes than she does) but I do understand when you feel it is hopeless. My counters/table and stove were constantly cluttered. I'd have to shove "junk" over just to use one of the burners--a true fire hazard. I'd clear clear/clean everything off (it would take all day) and somehow, 2 days later everything was piled again. WTH? My motto was, "Why should I clear it off? It's just going to be this way in a couple days."
I'm at work, but I know exactly what I left laying on my table--an outfit for dd that I pulled out of her bag, her socks, a phone book, and a couple other things. That's how it starts. That's how the clutter starts. When I go home, I will clear off those few items....otherwise by next week it will be piled a mile high. "I was going to do it earlier but..." I should have just done it when I noticed it, yk?
As far as flylady's suggestion to start with polishing your sink? I tried that for awhile (the bathroom sink). It encouraged me to spiffy up the rest of the bathroom and the bathroom always looked fantastic. Then I moved into the kitchen after I was able to keep the bathoom looking good. I've heard other mama's on here not getting the need to polish the sink. Don't start there. Start with something that you would benefit from....picking up toys, doing dishes, having a clear counter to make cofee, etc. Pick one small task as your goal and go from there.
Laundry. My washer/dryer is in the kitchen--the kitchen I've been working very hard at keeping clean. So, you walk into my kitchen and see laundry heaping over, next to the washer which is next to the stove. Beautiful. I go through towels/rags like a mad woman (no paper towels). I just throw them in the corner and let them pile up until I discover I have no more towels, of course
Here's what I did yesterday: I put 2 small laundry baskets under the kitchen cabinet (it's empty because I purged and organized that last week). One basket is for nasty rags that need bleached. The other basket is for regular use kitchen towels. When the baskets get full (perfect basket size for one load with my not-so-great-washer) I will throw it in the washer.
I also put 2 large (tall) baskets in the bathroom closet (also empty because I purged things yesterday). One basket is for darks. One is for lights/whites. No need to sort. When they're full, I will throw them in the wash (they're both over full currently....but I just started this new system! I had to move piles of dirty laundry from my kitchen to the bathroom
). But, I think this system will help me SO much!
I still have a lot to do. But I feel so much better already
: Less stress. More pride in how my home looks. More pride in myself. My mom came over for Thanksgiving and was in love with what I did to my kitchen (clean/organized and color accents) and told me, "Your house looks so homey." It felt so good to hear that....and I agree. It's come a long way from what it used to be....but I'm not where I want to be yet. I have detailed visions, that I think about daily (a "vision board" if you will), of how I want my house and I think that helps a ton with achieving goals.
Here are the "before" photo's I have with me. I'll get after's tonight if I remember. This is how my house has usually been...worse since becoming a mom.Kitchen sink/counter1Kitchen sink/counter2Above sinkTop of fridge 1
(Those snow flakes were from Christmas of 2007--they stayed up all year long
)Top of fridge 2
(There was a cabinet of junk next to it that I didn't get a photo of).Dryer next to fridgeDining room table 1Dining room table 2Across the room from table
(((shudders)))View from top
(That's 3 xmas trees someone gave me and a bunch more crap that's collected. It doesn't look as bad in the photo--it was piled high).
Across from that is my desk
Now. All of those have been taken care of except my desk. I'm at a loss over what to do with desk.
I'll get after photo's posted tomorrow.