Tag: home

Things I’ve Learned (So Far) As a Mom

Things I’ve learned as a Mom:

  • There are never, ever enough AAA or AA batteries in the house.
  • There will be too many of the WRONG kind of batteries in the house when your child clamors for the other kind.
  • Always keep a Philips screwdriver in the kitchen drawer.
  • Nature’s Miracle is handy for pet messes and for a light spray-down of a potty-training kid’s mattress.
  • Check your own pockets for tissues and chapstick before doing the laundry.
  • Diaper rash ointment can be handy for Mom’s running problems as well as baby’s bottom
  • Every work of art is precious
  • But take a picture of it and get rid of it or it will BREED LIKE RABBITS
  • Only get rid of it when the kids aren’t looking
  • Or teach the kids the value of recycling early in their lives
  • Also: “This is how we make room for MORE art!”
  • Keep an extra storage tote handy for dropping in seasonal decor that didn’t quite make the Easter clean-up of Christmas decorations (what, is it just me?)
  • Sometimes a ten-minute timer makes cleaning into a game or a race, especially if there’s a prize at the end
  • That works on kids too
  • Throw the laundry detergent cup into the load after you add the soap. No more sticky residue!
  • Also: keep the extra ones when you buy new detergent.
  • Also: remember to get it out of the washer before you transfer the load to the dryer. Ha!
  • Finally … three hours of kid-free cleaning while at home and sick still accomplishes the same as two weeks worth of cleaning while the kids are around.

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I’m trying a Summer Blog Project to get myself to write more regularly. The project is – wait for it – blogging during the summer. I know! You can follow along by liking the Treacle.Net Facebook page!

 

My Homemaker Bête Noire

Oh man, you guys. I need some help.

Since we’re among friends, I will freely admit that I have lots of shortcomings in the homemaker area. As in, I really don’t excel at it. I hate cleaning, I organize people and schedules better than clothes and dishes and laundry, and I can’t decorate a home to save my life. I see Pinterest boards of beautiful homes and rooms (here’s my dream board) and wonder how people come up with these ideas.

I want this to be my living room:

Pinned from Four Generations, One Roof

In reality, I have this – the laundry couch and the “what, you want to actually SIT here?” couch:

The Laundry Couch
The Laundry Couch
Wait, you want to SIT here?
Wait, you want to SIT here?

I’d love for the kids’ playroom to be this:

clean playroom that is not at my house
Pinned from Houzz.com

But right now we have this:

When children run amok
When children run amok
At least the window blows out some of the messy detail
At least the window blows out some of the messy detail

I’ve tried and failed at various organizational methods, so now I’m going to try again. Because like I said, no change means you stay in the situation you’re already in.

Fact: Five people live in this house. There will always be laundry.
Fiction: Laundry has to immediately be put away, wrinkle-free, and on color-coordinated hangers.
Deal with it, Erin: put the laundry away so people have a place to sit.

Fact: Children are messy and not naturally inclined to organize their toys.
Fiction: Children cannot be taught to clean up their messes.
Deal with it, Erin: Someone has to teach them and build cleaning up into their daily schedules. And they’re learning by watching, so you better clean up along with them.

Fact: Most of my days are spent away from home.
Fiction: I get a pass on cleaning when I am home, because I’m tired.
Deal with it, Erin: It’s not fair to hope someone else will magically take care of all the messes. It’s also not fair to get all crazy and upset every few weeks because you’ve let the messes spawn.

Ugh.

I have some other ideas of things I could do with organization systems, but right now it’s boiling down to this:

  1. Get rid of some crap and junk in the playroom. Okay, around the house in general. Look into toy rotation, too.
  2. Spend at least 10 minutes a day cleaning up, with a little more on the weekend.
  3. Get one storage tote for each child (maybe even the grown-ups) and label it “Next.” Next season, next size, whatever makes sense for the person. Then put all the other ones away.

How do you tame the household chaos you can’t stand?

My Friday Five (Senses)

Full disclosure: I am GRUMPY. Cranky, irritated, and crabby.

Back in the day, one of my favorite journallers used to do a Friday Five – five questions, posted on your journal / blog / whatever we had. This isn’t quite the same, but I’ve noticed lots of “Friday Fives” so why not this one.

Feeling: COLD. Yesterday morning it was 73F when I went for my run. This morning it was 40F, and that’s where the temperature has hovered all day. So I am curled up in my cozy pajama pants and a long-sleeved t-shirt, trying to not let the cold grump me even more.

Seeing: My Fair Wedding. I know, I know. It’s not exactly helping the grump factor. It’s like my junk food, though. Speaking of …

Eating: Doritos, mint M&Ms, plain M&Ms. I need to check the calendar.

Hearing: Silence, other than the television. A sleeping baby, sleeping preschooler, and sleeping kindergartner. I’m pretty sure the latter has the beginnings of strep, which is perfect timing since we’re about to start a weekend that was supposed to be filled with many things to do. Also, the husband has had last week’s stomach virus today. I know how that felt, and it was miserable. I hope they both feel better soon … and they don’t spread their germs.

Smelling: I’m in the mood for some level of cozy, home-y scents, so I’ve turned on my Snowman scented wax warmer. (My one holiday decoration so far.) Black raspberry vanilla, as chosen by the preschooler.

(GRUMP.)

Note to self.
Note to self.

Off to work we go …

Ah, yes. After 16 days of government shutdown, we got calls last night informing us to check communications and head back to work in the morning. I actually would have appreciated getting that phone call this morning instead of 11:30 last night when I’d finally managed to sleep, but whatever!

It was … interesting … to be back at work today. I really don’t remember a lot of what we had planned. During my orderly shutdown on October 1, I took notes on things I thought I’d need to remember. Hmm. Well, we’ll just have to see if I even remember WHY those were important. I have a feeling things will start to gel a little more on Monday after we’ve all had a chance to sweep out the cobwebs.

By the way — I never did run out of things to do or get bored while I was furloughed. I felt like I was finally able to focus on what I really wanted to do at home and with my family instead of having fractured attention. I didn’t make it all the way through my to-do list, but I sure got a lot done!

So in the meantime, when I’m not at work or when I have a break, I let my mind wander back to more fun things … like Halloween art or making up running costumes for Disney races. I know it’s silly but I just can’t help it.

Sofia in First?
Sofia in First? by dormousie

I think Nora would be quite impressed by this one.

Or how about this one? I loved Beauty and the Beast. It came out when I was in high school (dating myself!) and I was almost obsessed with it.

Très Belle!
Très Belle! by dormousie 

Much more appealing than “real” work!

I’m still raising money for Homes For Our Troops and the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend 10k! Tomorrow I’m going to kick off the voting for the Disney character I’ll use for inspiration for my REAL running costume. Everyone gets a vote, but my donors get MORE votes! Stay tuned … or even better, donate now!

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