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#91 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 12:24 AM
 
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dishes in the sink, a pile of stuff to list on TP, toys out, glitter n' glue on the kitchen table...

4 things keep me from having a clean house right now. PPD DH DD and DS

Happy with my DH, 2 kids, dog, fish, and frogs
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#92 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 12:27 AM
 
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My husband, mainly. If he goes out of town for work and I clean everything up, it stays clean until he comes back. Within an hour of his return, there's a trail of destruction around the house. I can see exactly where he's been just following it around: open cupboards, dropped mail, stray socks, etc.

With the toddler at least I can make her help me clean up (usually). Him, nope, no luck.

2 happy kids makes for a happy mother.

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#93 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 12:27 AM
 
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What stops me?

morning sickness, 2 kids, 1 dog, 3 cats, in 600 sq feet and a dh who REFUSES to help out.
I am not superwoman and I cannot keep up.
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#94 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 12:31 AM
 
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Originally Posted by journeymom View Post
What stops me from having a neat house? I don't like cleaning and tidying and de cluttering. It's boring.

And I don't like our house. We never should have bought this house, my heart isn't in it.
Oh journey.


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#95 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 12:51 AM
 
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Well right now I'm hyperemetic, and moving, really at all, makes me vomit. Bending over twice to pick up two toys would have me retching in the bathroom for hours, so all the pick up is for my partner when he gets home. He doesn't care as much, and besides has to do all the kid care plus take care of his sick, pregnant wife.

But you work now, right? When I work my house is so much neater. The kids aren't here all day to mess it up! They can make such huge messes so quickly! I do just hate to do laundry, so that gets put off, but for the most part it's that I can put all the toys back in their place, and 20 minutes later it looks like I haven't cleaned in months. The rest of it- clean floors and bathrooms- hardly takes any time compared to picking up. But that's not what makes a house look clean, really.
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#96 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 02:34 AM
 
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I hate dishes, probably because when I was growing up my dad would holler about "do those dishes, you do those dishes right now, etc". I hated it then, not because it was hard work (although I do think sticking your hands into food-n-bacteria soup dishwater is NASTY); I hated it then because dad made such a huge issue over it. He literally judged me on how my chores were done. He'd complain that "These dishes taste soapy," or that "Something around here stinks" and he'd go running around sniffing things until Mom and I cleaned anything he thought might have an odor. BTW, Mom and I kept a VERY clean house, no one else ever tasted soap or smelled something nasty.

Also, I hated dishes because they were "the girl's job." Dad made my brother do dishes a few times... but whenever my brother complained, Dad let him off, and told ME to wash those dishes. I hated that.

Nowadays, my house is pretty clean. I do go into "psycho cleaning mode" whenever my dad or grandmother (who is just like him) are coming over. If they don't smell bleach they think you're a hog... my grandma actually comes over and washes my dishes if I didn't get the chance; she says she can't stand the smell. Makes me feel great...

So my dishes often go unwashed for 2-3 days. My husband doesn't complain, and the rest of the house stays pretty well neat and tidy.

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#97 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 02:47 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I am the OP. This thread is almost a year old so I was very surprised to see it resurface.

To me "neatness" has very different definitions from person to person. I can have some toys out in the living room, my usual stack of books on the endtable, my hand lotion and drink cup. However, stacks of old newspapers, or piles of laundry drive me batty. Lived in doesn't have to be a cliche for messy. Lived in means having things around you that adds comfort and happiness to your life. ie books for me are like air. I gotta have them and lots of em. Many people look at them and say donate them all. NO WAY. However, if I allow them on every surface in my home they would cease to give me happiness, only annoyance. I think it is a check and balance system between OCD level its gotta be neat and complete mess. If you have small children your home simply isn't going to look like it did prechild. It is no longer your home, it is their home too. They have to have toys, books, playclothes, etc. The key is to find balance between their happiness and your sanity. I have three sons, all born within 5yrs, who are homeschooled. So yes I know of which I speak in having lots of small kids at one time and having them here 24/7. Yes mamas it will get easier as they get older and are able to help, and don't have as many toys. But it will always be a constant process, there is no end.
Also to those with terrible morning sickness, ill children, etc all you can do is your best. If that is feeding your babies, changing diapers and rocking them all day then that truely is your best. The house can wait til another day. Another day you will pick up and clean up, but not this day. And that is OK.
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But you work now, right? When I work my house is so much neater. The kids aren't here all day to mess it up!
Hempmama-who are you directing this to? I missed something.
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#98 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 02:48 AM
 
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I just don't buy into the "I have a baby and can't get anything done" unless you have a very ill child/high needs child. That is usually an excuse for an underlying problem.
Um, the underlying problem for me comes down to basic physics. It's the entropy of the universe!

See the Merriam-Webster definition of entropy:

a: the degradation of the matter and energy in the universe to an ultimate state of inert uniformity b: a process of degradation or running down or a trend to disorder


I'm only partly joking. Sure I could have a spotless house if I sat my kids in front of the TV or denied them the pleasure of playing. But I think a little bit of mess never hurt anyone, and someday when I don't have toddlers tearing up the house faster than I can clean up behind them, we'll be neater.

Until then, we're not really dirty or piled high with clutter. But there might be crumbs under ds's chair, chances are the beds aren't made, and mind you don't trip on the toys!

Wife to a wonderful dh and mom to four beautiful kiddos, dd (3/04):, ds1 (1/06), ds2 (10/08), and ds3 (7/10)
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#99 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 03:01 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Sure I could have a spotless house if I sat my kids in front of the TV or denied them the pleasure of playing. But I think a little bit of mess never hurt anyone, and someday when I don't have toddlers tearing up the house faster than I can clean up behind them, we'll be neater.
I agree that a little bit of mess never did hurt anyone. refer to post above, as we cross posted.

My statement you quoted is a small portion of what I said. And I do stand by the statement. Having a child is no excuse to live in a total disaster. A total disaster is not toys in the living room, sippy cups, etc. I'm talking about stacks of dirty dishes, piles of dirty clothes, etc. Usually there is underlying reasons behind living that way. At one point my boys were 6, 3 and 1 so I understand very well what toddlers can do to a home. I'm talking about what adults do to a home. Or at least I was a year ago
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#100 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 03:06 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I hate dishes, probably because when I was growing up my dad would holler about "do those dishes, you do those dishes right now, etc". I hated it then, not because it was hard work (although I do think sticking your hands into food-n-bacteria soup dishwater is NASTY); I hated it then because dad made such a huge issue over it. He literally judged me on how my chores were done. He'd complain that "These dishes taste soapy," or that "Something around here stinks" and he'd go running around sniffing things until Mom and I cleaned anything he thought might have an odor. BTW, Mom and I kept a VERY clean house, no one else ever tasted soap or smelled something nasty.

Also, I hated dishes because they were "the girl's job." Dad made my brother do dishes a few times... but whenever my brother complained, Dad let him off, and told ME to wash those dishes. I hated that.

Nowadays, my house is pretty clean. I do go into "psycho cleaning mode" whenever my dad or grandmother (who is just like him) are coming over. If they don't smell bleach they think you're a hog... my grandma actually comes over and washes my dishes if I didn't get the chance; she says she can't stand the smell. Makes me feel great...

So my dishes often go unwashed for 2-3 days. My husband doesn't complain, and the rest of the house stays pretty well neat and tidy.
Thank you for sharing this. That is exactly what I was aiming for with this thread when I started it. You have a clear and valid reason for leaving the dishes sit a bit. That was my question "what stops you from having a neat house". Not to say your house isn't neat, you know what I mean.
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#101 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 03:20 AM
 
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I was directing it to the OP- so you, a year ago I suppose. The post mentioned going back to work. I find it so much easier to keep my house clean when toddlers spend less time in it.
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#102 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 12:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh, then I'm sure you read on to see my kids are in my home 24/7 and always have been. My dh and I work opposite shifts and have since we had babies, so they could be home all the time and not in daycare. Not that daycare is an evil, just not for us. And we homeschool them. We take turns working with them throughout the day.
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#103 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 03:03 PM
 
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not being organized enough to stay on a routine
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#104 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 03:05 PM
 
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my kids stop me. I spend all day cleaning and they are in another room destroying it. I don't mean dumping out toys, I mean destroying it, boken furniture,, ripped photos, flooded bathrooms etc.

Part of it hough is psychological, like this is the best it will ever be, this is all I deserve so it becomes a fullfilling prophecy

Brandy Single momma to A(11), C(10), H(6) and I(2)
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#105 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 03:38 PM
 
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my kids stop me. I spend all day cleaning and they are in another room destroying it. I don't mean dumping out toys, I mean destroying it, boken furniture,, ripped photos, flooded bathrooms etc.

Part of it hough is psychological, like this is the best it will ever be, this is all I deserve so it becomes a fullfilling prophecy
I notice you are a single mama. Don't try to hold yourself up to 2-parent standards of cleanliness. You will only frustrate yourself.
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#106 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 03:40 PM
 
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No, I didn't read on. This looked more like a poll type thing.

Having a clean house must be a very high priority for you. My MIL also thinks people without clean houses either have serious issues or are lazy if their house isn't clean. More often it's that they have different priorities, and like most people wish there was enough time to get to the lower priorities on their list, but often don't. Maybe you don't exercise as much as you'd like, or go out with friends, or any number of other worthwhile things you'd like to do if only there were 36 hours in the day, and you didn't need to sleep. It sounds like you place much more value on a clean house than average.
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#107 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 05:21 PM
 
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things are neat around here when i am feeling good (not depressed or sleep-deprived) and i really think it is a reflection of my health, mental and physical. so, i'm more organised when i'm happier; i'm happier when i'm more organised. i don't need things to be perfect, but we all get stressed and have lot less time and energy for the fun stuff when we can't find clean clothes, trip over stuff, and are hungry before we've figured out if there's anything to eat!! so yes, i like a smoothly-functioning house. like many things in life, having a family and running a household sometimes falls apart. i try to hang in there, but i do find it hard. i also notice that my need for connection, solitude, or just the busy-ness of managing finances, homelearning, and wanting to get outside each day...it all competes. with young children i find that something i am juggling gets dropped. once my first was 3 or 4 i found it easy to do my routines. but i was SLEEPING a lot! having my second made it harder again. i'm on the way up for air, i think. certainly a small apartment means there's nowhere to shove things, so it is all there under your feet if you aren't keeping up. when i have a newborn we just go to emergency...although i find toddlers harder! i can't sling them and they don't sleep much, and they tear it up! now mine are 2 and 7, i'm getting there.

i find routines help me stay on track, and using a timer, and meeting my needs for connection with real people, rather than trolling mdc overly much!

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#108 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 05:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Having a clean house must be a very high priority for you. My MIL also thinks people without clean houses either have serious issues or are lazy if their house isn't clean. More often it's that they have different priorities, and like most people wish there was enough time to get to the lower priorities on their list, but often don't. Maybe you don't exercise as much as you'd like, or go out with friends, or any number of other worthwhile things you'd like to do if only there were 36 hours in the day, and you didn't need to sleep. It sounds like you place much more value on a clean house than average.
Choosing not to take the bait...
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#109 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 10:11 PM
 
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??

I was trying to give you a reason well balanced, hard-working people might have for not having a neat house. It's ordinarly priorities- most of us have a few things toward the bottom of our priority list we wish we could get to, but realistically can't.
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#110 of 119 Old 01-26-2008, 10:50 PM
 
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??

I was trying to give you a reason well balanced, hard-working people might have for not having a neat house. It's ordinarly priorities- most of us have a few things toward the bottom of our priority list we wish we could get to, but realistically can't.


I agree with this as a refutation of the idea that messy houses = some kind of mental problem.





"What stops you from having a neat house?"
For me, tonight: TAXES
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#111 of 119 Old 01-27-2008, 12:36 AM
 
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i'd love to know my underlying reason for being a slob. it's hard to address the issue when i don't know what it is!
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#112 of 119 Old 01-27-2008, 01:38 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Having a clean house must be a very high priority for you. My MIL also thinks people without clean houses either have serious issues or are lazy if their house isn't clean.
Bolding mine. I was trying very hard not to address however, I would hate for others to think I am saying people with messy houses have serious issues or are lazy. Not so at all. What I said numerous times was there are brickwalls people hit when trying to obtain goals. The goals of this area of MDC are "Decluttering, Organizing & Simplifying". So my question, assuming since folks are in this area that is their goal also, I am asking is what brickwall do they hit that prevents them from having a "neat" home...which one would have if they are organized, decluttered and simplified.
To answer the question about my priorities...yes having a clean & neat home is a priority, right behind my children & dh, my homeschooling, my friends, and my job as a nurse. However, I have learned what my brickwall was a long time ago and broke thru it. My brickwall was stuff and lots of it. I realized I couldn't keep up with it all and had to let a ton of stuff leave my house. Now I have what I can manage. If I allow myself to bring lots of things back into my home I would be rebuilding my wall.
My mental well being is severly affected by my surroundings. I am what they call spirited. Noises, smells, textures, clutter, etc have very negative effects on me. So I have to control what I can to preserve my well being so I can be a great mom and wife. So yes I do make it a priority to be neat.
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#113 of 119 Old 01-27-2008, 11:02 AM
 
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Skipping most of this thread, but I have to admit that I think my house would be easier to keep tidy if I had money to throw at it.

I'd love to have beautiful wooden storage units with DOORS and DRAWERS to store (read: hide) things in. I have accumulated some nice baskets and boxes for things, and some decent furniture, but "closed" storage would look tidier, if that makes sense.

If we had the time/money to fix, or pay someone to fix, the dishwasher, then we wouldn't have dirty and clean dishes taking up counter space.

I would love to have nice flooring instead of the awfully stained tan carpet in our living/family/dining room. No matter how tidy the room is, it always looks messy because of the carpet.

Heck, new matching living room furniture in a nice solid color would help the tidy neat effect also.

And our walls ALL need painting; they're stained and crayoned and look dingy and messy. And our ceilings are stained from prior water damage and need to be torn down and redone. Again, without time/money to do or pay someone to do this, the room is going to look cluttered no matter how tidy it really is.

Not sure if that is what you were looking for, but it's my first response.

I think the kids being bigger and more responsible for cleaning up their own messes would help, too. It's gotten better as they've gotten older, but we still have a long ways to go.


Amanda, mom to Everest (12), Alden (10-1/2), Ellery (7-1/2), & Avery (6)
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#114 of 119 Old 01-27-2008, 11:29 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I understand that. I remember our first house, when the boys were toddlers and how bad the carpet got, blech. It was light grey to start with and showed every little drip and stain. And the walls were white, MATTE finish paint. If you washed them the paint came off too. I felt the same way...no matter what I did it looked dingy. And like you said it isn't cheap to buy all those organizer type things. I remember after eight years when we finally got to get the new carpet thinking...ok now nobody touch it...LOL. Yeah right.
On the paint...one thing you might consider is mistints. Lowes, home depot, etc constantly have mistints for very cheap, of the best brands. And they have lots of pretty colors. A gallon is like 10$. One time I saw a 5 gallon bucket in satin finish in a beautiful khaki color for 20$. I didn't have any use for it at the time.
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#115 of 119 Old 01-27-2008, 11:44 AM
 
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For me, too much stuff, messy kids, lack of storage space and motivation.

Sabrina , mom to 4 fab kids!

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#116 of 119 Old 01-27-2008, 01:45 PM
 
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Bolding mine. I was trying very hard not to address however, I would hate for others to think I am saying people with messy houses have serious issues or are lazy. Not so at all. What I said numerous times was there are brickwalls people hit when trying to obtain goals. The goals of this area of MDC are "Decluttering, Organizing & Simplifying". So my question, assuming since folks are in this area that is their goal also, I am asking is what brickwall do they hit that prevents them from having a "neat" home...which one would have if they are organized, decluttered and simplified.
To answer the question about my priorities...yes having a clean & neat home is a priority, right behind my children & dh, my homeschooling, my friends, and my job as a nurse. However, I have learned what my brickwall was a long time ago and broke thru it. My brickwall was stuff and lots of it. I realized I couldn't keep up with it all and had to let a ton of stuff leave my house. Now I have what I can manage. If I allow myself to bring lots of things back into my home I would be rebuilding my wall.
My mental well being is severly affected by my surroundings. I am what they call spirited. Noises, smells, textures, clutter, etc have very negative effects on me. So I have to control what I can to preserve my well being so I can be a great mom and wife. So yes I do make it a priority to be neat.
_____________________

Very well put!!! I am the same - my mental well being is also terribly affected by my surroundings and its taken me years to figure this out. I can be peralized by it and then I am no good to anyone!

Its a domino effect if I am not carefull. So for me -VISUAL CLUTTER is kept to a minimum- Housecleaning and decluttering is a priority -- so that I am free to be the best wife and mom I can be!

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#117 of 119 Old 01-27-2008, 09:29 PM
 
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_________________

OH -- that is sad ... Do you have an option to possibly sell and find a home that suits your better?

Thanks for being kind and not telling me I'm a spoiled brat! Because that's exactly how I think my post reads. We live in an otherwise lovely home in a lovely neighborhood, that simply doesn't suit me.

This house is an indictment of my lousy decision-making abilities. I was already feeling childlike and incompetent. We moved in and I just totally gave up trying to keep house. Stuff has just piled up, the carpet is dirty, I don't try very hard. Our previous house was this sweet little thing in a neighborhood perfect for raising little kids. There was grass and room for a veggie garden, I had a clothes line so we could save money. I associated it with my growing enthusiasm for motherhood and my crunchy lifestyle. We moved when it got too small and I couldn't handle the nutty lady across the street anymore.

We moved to a house with NO grass in the back yard, nothing but concrete. It's more suited to a retired couple with an RV. We're supposed to keep the front yard beautiful and tidy. And there's no place for a clothes line, dammit! I pretty much gave up my 'crunchy' life when we moved here. Not the attachment parenting, but the rest of the lifestyle I was developing. I must sound very shallow, but I had no idea how much my home and neighborhood was encouraging/discouraging my perception of myself.

I've struggled with depression my entire life. My decision to buy this house was a huge hit to my already fragile self esteem.

Enough time has passed that I wouldn't feel totally embarrassed, humiliated to move to a more suitable home. But that's not going to happen in THIS housing market!! I'm finally getting to the bottom of some important issues, and this whole issue with this house and my ego/self esteem is a new discovery to me. My mental energy and joy for life is slowly returning (very exciting! ) and I'm making plans for improving this house! We're tearing out most of the concrete this year! We're tearing out a wooden deck we never use and replacing it with a play set! It's really exciting. It's been years since I've made goals and dreamed dreams.

Someone moved my effing cheese.
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#118 of 119 Old 01-27-2008, 09:39 PM
 
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Originally Posted by amyamanda View Post
If we had the time/money to fix, or pay someone to fix, the dishwasher, then we wouldn't have dirty and clean dishes taking up counter space.

I would love to have nice flooring instead of the awfully stained tan carpet in our living/family/dining room. No matter how tidy the room is, it always looks messy because of the carpet.

Heck, new matching living room furniture in a nice solid color would help the tidy neat effect also.

And our walls ALL need painting; they're stained and crayoned and look dingy and messy. And our ceilings are stained from prior water damage and need to be torn down and redone. Again, without time/money to do or pay someone to do this, the room is going to look cluttered no matter how tidy it really is.
Agreed, on all counts! Just insert front yard irrigation for your dishwasher problem. Our front yard is a mess because it needs new irrigation. We don't have the skills to fix it ourselves, and we don't have the money to pay someone to do it.

Someone moved my effing cheese.
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#119 of 119 Old 01-27-2008, 11:02 PM
 
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[QUOTE=Conteuse;7449708]Let's see... for me it's mostly the decision-making process. I'm a "categorizer," and it's very hard for me to make decisions about where things should go and what "category" they should be in.

I think I read about this concept on a hoarding website somewhere: she'll take a book off the shelf and start reading it on the couch, and then get interrupted. Where does she put the book? Well, now it's in a new category of "partially-read books" and therefore doesn't belong with the others on the shelf anymore. So she just leaves it lying out on the couch. When you add this mindset to every single thing you get out, it's understandable how it could cause a mess!

I've had to re-train my thought processes, because mine is a very well-ordered, logical, and perfectionist nature. It used to really bother me when something from one mental category crossed over into another one -- like if my husband put my half-read book back on the shelf, for example -- but though it has been hard, I've been able to loosen up a bit"

This is totally me! I have to constantly retrain my brain!

Married to wonderful DH 10 yrs DS 9yrs self-weaned @ 3 1/2 yrs  TTC 3 yrs got preg 4 months after HSG with DS 4yrs self-weaned at 3 1/2 yrs  Hope to have more little ones but have secondary infertility issues so we'll just have to see what the future brings Enjoying homeschooling and farming
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