July 6, 2011

wifley wednesday: struggles with chores

Today I want to talk about the struggles that I'm guessing lots of other stay-at-home moms face - I know I do. While I don't have all the answers (after all, this isn't a calculus class) - I can offer some suggestions or just a little encouragement. I listed 5 of my top struggles, and I'll work on addressing them all over the next few weeks. I'm going to be mostly speaking from personal experience here, so well, I'm about to get personal...

My top 5 struggles:
1. Staying on top of the chores
2. Having a kind and loving heart (read: patience)
3. Mommy guilt
4. Feeling beautiful
5. Giving time - and more - to God

1. Staying on top of the chores
I am forever trying to scale a mountain of laundry, dishes, or toys. In the past few weeks our dryer broke, and we are unable to replace it at the moment. So, I am line-drying our laundry which, in my ideal world, I should/would be doing anyway. The reality is, I'm just a little bit (read: super) picky about my laundry, so a job that already took me longer than the average bear to do now takes even longer. I am meticulous about how it is hung on the line and I hate wrinkly clothes - and I keep my cloth diapers looking new. So while I AM saving money and energy and the environment, I'm not saving any time - which I feel short on already. However - it's what needs to be done and I do it. I actually kind of enjoy the process - especially when the hubs is home and I can close the door (read: crying and whining) behind me. It's peaceful. I just wish I had a little more time.

The kitchen - the thorn in my side. Oh kitchen, why for doth thy plagueth me? (I'm pretending to speak old-English, go with it). In our home, the hubs does most of the cooking. I never learned how to cook, and therefore never learned to enjoy it. That's my sugar-coating way of saying I hate cooking. Hubs, on the other hand, can pretty much make anything I can order up. He enjoys experimenting and dabbling in the culinary arts. And, he's good at it. I can preheat the oven, turn on the microwave, and add water. That's about where my talent ends. So, I end up with the meal-aftermath (read: natural disaster relief needed). Not a bad system in theory, but as much as I enjoy scrubbing the pots, the time-monster rears it's ugly head again. I end up cleaning the kitchen in waves - wave 1 is after breakfast, this is when the dishwasher gets unloaded. Wave 2 is after morning shower time - typically with Veggie Tales playing from the front room. This is when I can re-load the dishwasher. Wave 3 is the actual cleaning of the room - the counters, the sink, the floor. This happens when Millie is eating lunch.  As much as I love surfing (at least I think I would if I tried it), these waves make me nuts. I just want to have a clean kitchen. However - it's what needs to be done and I do it.
Noticing a trend? It's what needs to be done and I do it. Not always very well, and not always in a timely manner - and almost never all at once.

Here are some ideas to help with getting the chores done:
`Go at it in waves. You might not be able to make a room sparkle, but you can get a start on it.
`Involve the kids. Millie's eyes light up when I let her put all the clean silverware (sans knives) in a tupperware for me.
`Make a cleaning chart. Monday clean the bathroom, Tuesday mop the floors, etc.
`Visit a site such as Fly Lady for tips and practical ways to get on top of the cleaning.
`Make a daily schedule or routine, put it on paper, and stick to it.
`Make yourself a reward system (peanut M&Ms anyone?!)


Anonymommy said...

Just so you know, I look forward to reading your blog every day. I love it. I struggle with cleaning the house so much. The kitchen is my least favorite room to clean, and I pretty much get it done in waves as well.

Cas said...

Aw, thanks! I'm glad to have at least one reader! LOL.
I'm going to TRY a new wave... to run the dishwasher at night now, instead of during the day, I think I'll feel more productive in life if I can come downstairs to a semi clean kitchen in the morning. :)

Anonymommy said...

We run the dishwasher at night. Usually Wesley will just sit in his high chair and color or talk to me while I clean. I have been wearing Caroline and it is such a lifesaver to get stuff done around the house!

Kelli Jean said...

sounds like we are very similar, Cas. My husband does most of the cooking as well. I spend my evenings usually cleaning the kitchen. It is nice when children are able to help with more responsibilities. Love reading your posts...

Jenn said...

I love to see Millie with that spray bottle!! She looks just as happy as Liam does. You're doing your best, which is great. You're a great mommy and wife!

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