You walk into your kitchen and see an empty sink, every dish is clean and away, the counter tops are clean and clutter free and left over food is away in the fridge. You walk into your living room and the cushions are neatly placed on the couch, the top of the TV stand is clear, every toy is away in its proper spot and you can see the entire floor. You walk around to the rest of your house and the bathroom is clean, your bed is made and clothes are put away and there is nothing sitting in the hallways. Now wouldn’t that be perfect!
Having a clean house with every room organized and everything in its right place, is a great feeling and leaves you with a sense of relief and calmness. As great as that sounds, it’s not always possible and it takes a lot of work to constantly maintain that level of organization and neatness, at least in my opinion it does! During the day there is so much going on, from feeding, changing bums and playing around, it’s hard to always find the time to step away and clean. Sometimes I find myself focusing so much on the mess that I end up stressing myself out.
I spend most of my day in the living room and the kitchen with Emily and the triplets.
In our house, those are the two rooms on the first floor and the two rooms everyone hangs out in when we have company. The kitchen is always full of dishes, either clean that need to be put away or dirty sitting in the sink waiting to be washed. The living room is overflowing with toys and baby things, such as swings, bouncers and high chairs. Sometimes I can barely walk from the gate to the couch. I am either tripping over a large toy, a baby seat or the dreaded building block and let me tell you, you have not experienced pain until you have stepped on one of those blocks!
It is impossible to keep up with all the chores in a house of 6 people and I find I have to tell myself multiple times through out the day, just leave the mess! I need to realize, with 4 kids I may not always have that perfectly organized and clean house and that’s okay. I also have to realize that there will be a time, either a free moment during the day or in the evening when everyone is asleep that I can go around and tidy things up. I have to understand that as long as I am doing the best I can to keep things somewhat tidy and organized, then that’s all that matters.
I think the biggest thing I need to remember is that the majority of the mess involves all the toys that Emily, Jackson, Olivia and Levi are playing with. I need to stop, look around and just watch them learning and playing together. Instead of trying to clean it up while they are playing, I should get down on the floor and join them. I know one day I will look back and wish they were this little again, just sitting on the floor playing. I won’t have these moments all the time, so I really should just take the time to appreciate and live them.
One of Emily’s favorite things to do during the day is to dump out all of the toys we have stored away in buckets under the TV. As soon as she starts it’s only a matter of minutes before the entire floor is covered in toys. My initial reaction almost every time is to say “Oh no! Why would you do that?” I know they are going to be playing with the toys, but it leaves no space for anything else.
When Emily did this just a couple weeks ago, I stopped myself from thinking “NO!” and thought, okay I am just going to let them play and not worry about trying to clean it all up right away.
So I did just that and let them be, playing with all of their toys while they went everywhere. It was so nice to sit back and watch them play and it kept them entertained for so long. I even sat down and joined in on their fun. Life seemed a little bit easier that day and knowing I was going to leave the toys reduced some of the stress I felt about trying to keep everything clean.
From that day on, I have used the thought of just leave the mess on more than one occasion and it has worked wonders. I take my time and enjoy it while watching and playing with Emily, Jackson, Olivia and Levi. There is no greater feeling then spending time with them and knowing there will be another time to clean!