Okay, given its only been a week since I started, I don't know that I can say mission accomplished, but I am definitely on the right track. I read an interview with Maggie Gyllenhaal where she had spoken highly about a book with housework schedules and cooking schedules and whatnot, and she praised it as the only way for a mother to ever get her house under control without losing her mind. To me housework is just overwhelming, and even when I work on it all day, it seems like it never gets done. So after reading that article, I searched and searched all through Google trying to find something like what MG had mentioned. I wasn't ever fully happy with anything I found so I sort of pieced together ideas I read throughout. Flylady's approach was the most helpful (definitely search for her if you're not familiar), and after only three days of trying out her plan, the townhouse actually looks pretty awesome. When you open the front door, the smell of cleanliness hits you head on, and thats always nice. Everything is organized, the kitchen shines, my bathrooms are spotless, and all the dishes are done, as well as (most) of the laundry. I basically spend the entire day, morning till night, walking behind two little ones and their daddy, picking things up and wiping counters done. As annoying as that is sometimes, it pretty much keeps me from ever having to do a whole deep clean. The floors stay clean, the counters wiped down, the dishes ready in the dishwasher. I keep dinner planned out and am working on cutting the trip to the grocery store down to once a week. I even managed to clean the car out, and vacuum it. With things going like this (permitted I can keep it up), all I have to do every day is straighten up. I do all the little things that accumulate into big messes, and then I dust a few times a day and vacuum as the floor needs it, and it has just helped so much already. Its helping me get the kids schedule worked out a little better, which in turn means more Mommy and Daddy time, which makes me really happy.
Over the past couple of months I had slumped into some type of depression, having so much to deal with. I have to run Chris back and forth to work thanks to a suspended license, and between nursing an infant and keeping up with a 2 year old, its been so overwhelming to still cook and still clean. Making such an effort to do all of those things left me with absolutely no time for myself. My makeup was never done anymore, I rarely got to take the long baths I enjoy so much, and I was just all together wore out. I knew I had to do something and I'm just hoping and praying that this housework schedule works out as well as it has so far. Having everything already done gives me the time to do my hair and makeup and take care of myself, and even to catch up on reading and getting this blog up and going. It isn't easy with so many things going on, but I think I do a pretty awesome job at taking care of everyone and everything so I deserve it. My kids obviously come first, as well as Chris, but I had to take the time to see that if Mama isn't happy and functioning well, then everything around here falls apart. [It took having a pretty severe 14 day stomach virus to see this.] Anyway, I'm pretty proud of where I've gotten here in the last few days and I'm really going to try to keep it up. I think this blog just might be the thing to motivate me.
Oh and last night I passed on some of my learned cooking skills to a good friend of mine. My good friend is Stephanie, and she and I have been friends my entire life, so that would be 22 years. Its pretty rare to have a steady friendship that lasts that long, so its good to spend time together doing things like that. She isn't much of a cooker, as her mom was always cooking dinner for her, but I on the other hand cooked for myself and my dad throughout middle school and high school, so I've got a good bit of experience under my belt. We made homemade baked beans, mac and cheese, grilled Italian chicken, and mashed potatoes. Pretty good meal with the exception of the mac and cheese. I got stuck with a recipe that didn't quite work out. It was made without cheddar cheese and I gotta say, none of us were a fan. Must have been a Northern recipe haha.
Just a little shared smile before I go... the kids were just playing in front of the tv while I was just out of sight at the computer desk. I was keeping an eye on them since Balin likes to get into all the DVDs and XBox stuff when Gracie crawled up right by his feet. I figured he would brush her off and move like usual, but instead my sweet boy leaned over and put his arm around her and gave her a hug and then patted her back. Then instead of standing right back up, he leaned over in front of her face and gave her a big long kiss before getting his little comb and starting to brush her hair! She had the biggest grin on her face. She loves her big brother so much. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that maybe he's finally warming up to her!