Oh, my poor neglected blog! I have a litany of excuses as to why I’ve left you so high and dry for so long, but really, it all comes down to the same thing: I’m a terrible blogger.
*Sigh* I can say I promise to be a better blogger, I promise to come back and write every day. But then what happens the next time I get sick or busy? There are no consequences, other than your loneliness. Dear blog, surely there is some way you can hold me accountable for my mistreatment of you!
I have noticed a direct correlation between this blog and my cleaning habits. When I stop writing, I stop cleaning (and vice-versa). And yesterday, I spent the day cleaning, and look at that will ya? Here I am, blogging again!
This last stretch was a particularly long one. Winter did not want to leave our house without making himself quite known. We have all been sick with one thing or another – in fact, in these last three weeks, my kids were diagnosed with strep, I was diagnosed with bronchitis that was more painful than any bronchitis I’ve ever had, my brother (who is staying with us for a few weeks) also caught bronchitis, and my sweet missus has been the healthiest out of the bunch! This is anomalous, and I shall knock on wood for her health. I’d encourage you to do the same. All together, now! ::knock, knock::
But the bronchitis took me out of the game for a bit. I napped on the sidelines, every now and then waking up to survey the damage done by the other team. Stinky litterboxes. A trash pile in the kitchen. Laundry. Toys strewn about haphazardly. It was enough to send me straight into my next nap.
Until yesterday. Yesterday, I turned on my Slacker station (titled, “I Miss the 90’s,” nothing beats it) and set to work on the kitchen and bathroom. To me, those are the most important parts of the house. The kitchen especially, because that is where the food is prepared; a well-kept kitchen, to me, correlates with the health and well-being of a family. And bathroom is important because it’s the one room the missus gets OCD about, and while I appreciate a clean and sanitary bathroom, I also appreciate the warm, fuzzy feeling I get from seeing her reaction when the bathroom has been cleaned. It’s like Christmas morning for her. That’s motivation enough.
The rest of the house is a little more challenging to motivate myself to tackle. It seems like no matter how thorough a job I do, if given the opportunity, my offspring will have it returned to its previously disastrous state in fifteen minutes, tops. I’m being generous, it probably wouldn’t even take that long.
I really need to work on having the kids pick up after themselves. Not for their lack of want – they love doing chores (I know, right?), and I can’t do anything around the house without them asking if they can help. Until it comes to picking up their belongings. Ahh, see, you thought I had some sort of superbreed of younguns didn’t you? Nope, they’re pretty normal. They don’t like to pick up that which belongs to them. There’s always a reason for something to be out. That telescope lying on the floor the last 3 days? “I’m gonna look at the stars tonight!” The blankets on the floor? “It’s cold in here in the morning!” Nevermind that it’s now noon, they need the blankets (on the floor) for tomorrow morning.
I’ve been working on one thing at a time with them. I’ve finally gotten them in the habit of picking up their dishes when they’re done with them. That’s a start. Now to get them in the habit of picking up after themselves a couple of times a day. Really, children are flexible – you give them a reason to change, and they’ll usually try it out. It’s me I’m worried about. I have to make this change happen, and until it’s second nature to them, I have to be consistent in my enforcement of this new expectation.
I’m the kind of mom that’s inclined to roll over and say, “Fine, you don’t have to do it now, but LATER! Later you will!” And later remains undefined… and unenforced.
Maybe it would just make more sense to throw everything away. Think they’d go for that?