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Why is my house so sticky?(48 Posts)
4 boys aged 6 to 1. Does anyone else have a sticky house? They pour juice and milk all over it, wee where they shouldn't (ds3 in particular) and smear yoghurt, chocolate everywhere. I am trying to wash my sofa as we speak but as I was trying to get the covers off the cushions on the floor I could feel myself sticking to the carpet. I feel sad (and sticky).
Are they allowed to walk around with food, juice and milk? Only have one DS (3) but if he looks like he's in a careless mood I give him sippy cup with lid on. Or only give him water.
smearing yog and choc would be an "end of dinner" offence here. I guess you mean on the table or wall within reach of table? If so, oldest and 2nd don't get to go off and play until table, wall etc wiped. Present a wet cloth/flannel to them all when eating is over. The youngest may need help wiping face, but it's a good habit for all of them.
As far as for wee accidents, again here nobody leaves the toilet bowl in a worse state than found. Bit radical but you could even decree wees are to be done sitting down until tall/dexterous enough to aim properly.
PP- with all the best will in the world, I'm guessing four little boys is a world apart from one three year old!! Seriously. I might be wrong but I've only got two and I relaxed the "no eating in the living room" rule as soon as I needed to get myself some sanity. Hence we have crumbs to Hoover up all the time! Not sticky though as I still make sure drinks are kept in the kitchen (apart from water in sippy cups or sports type bottles).
OP- can I recommend a pack of babywipes in each room?! Lol. They clean up s multitude of sticky messes!
I have three boys, all grown up now. However at one time I had three under five and worked full time. My house was permanently grubby and a bit sticky.
When they were very little I started a meal time rota of laying the table, clearing the table, wiping and sweeping. It changed on a weekly basis. It helped with the mess but also made them realise that things had to be cleaned up and that it was a pain in the neck. They did all become a lot less casual with their food, juice, rubbish etc.
my only other advice is to whizz round with a bucket of hot water and a cloth occasionally and relax about it. It doesn't last long.
I humbly apologise for my total naivety.
Was a CM with 6 kids 4 of them under 4, and sorry but had a strict only food sat down rule and drinks in sippy cups are as they got older, water bottles.
I have a strict food and drink at kitchen table only rule. Only water gets taken out.
They eat 3 times a day, and have a set snack time ( after nap/ nursery/ school) so there doesn't seem any reason for random food wanderings
How sarcastic!! Goodness me. I humbly apologise for my terrible parenting (allowing children to eat in places other than the kitchen)
It's not sarcastic. I am just lazy and don't have time to be cleaning the entire house of crumbs and handprints, hence that everyone ( including adults) eat at the table
I don't have a sticky house, have a 4yo and a toddler. Have beakers with lids on for the general house area, if older toddler wants an open cup he has to sit down at the table to drink it. Things like ice lollies they have to sit down to eat and I usually give them a tissue to catch drips and wipe hands with baby wipe afterwards. I do allow the odd sandwich or piece of fruit in the lounge for the older toddler but make sure it's nothing that will make too much mess. They rarely have chocolate but when they do I keep an eye for chocolatey hands as soon as they are finished.
I wipe up spills when they happen and keep tester pots of the wall paint in easy reach. I literally paint away any marks that won't wipe away as soon as they happen.
As for wee, do you mean they sprinkle on the floor next to the loo occasionally, or worse, as in actually wee in places that are not even near the loo? Anything that is not an accidental tinkle is disciplined, (told off firmly and made to help wipe up).
I have babywipes and tissues all over the house - in each loo, by the highchair, in the lounge & dining rooms. That helps too as does reminders to wash hands for 4yo.
I fear my horror of a DD1 may have paid you a secret visit.
She's almost 15 and she still wipes her sticky fingers on the Sofa
Ooh yes and then there's my 12 year old with her trail of orange peel - mind you, she's very easy to find
I'm obviously not very good. No cup is ever lidless yet I leave the room and find baby pouring them upside down. We have open plan arrangement with table next to living room and they seem to migrate to sofa and I'm constantly rounding them back to table. Eg dinner time ds3 will need a wee and when I arrive back from toilet ds1 and 2 will be on sofa. As for wees ds3 taken to removing pants and tinkling on deck but this week in house. He is 2.5. I think I must be a slattern perhaps but I find it very hard to constantly be on top of every drink they have etc. maybe it's having 4
I have 4 though no boys.Here's what I've discovered along the way.No eating or drinking away from table for preschoolers,ever. Leather sofas and hard floors are a godsend with only rugs that can go in washer.When my youngest 2 were little I went through 3
almostwhite carpets in as many years. (The eldest dd had disabilities which led to frequent accidents and vomiting.)
ALWAYS wipe hands before they leave the table.Once they get old enough get them to help.. make a game out of it give them all a wetwipe and see who can find +remove the most marks on paintwork/walls etc.Set a timer to make it a race! Sounds daft but it works.
As for the weeing on floor, reward charts and good old time out for doing it on purpose.Lots of praise and recognition when they help you keep the home clean and tidy.
It really does get you down when the home is a mess so make it a priority and be consistant with the ground rules.HTH and goodluck
Like the wipe idea - can see mine going for that. Used to have wooden floors in UK in my old house and never felt so sticky but we have emigrated and in rental with carpets throught (even under dining table ) and sunscreen and sand to boot. I notice the difference alot.
I make my son clean up every spillage, every dropped item. He scrapes his plate into the bin as well. Eats only in kitchen. The odd dry biscuit in front of tv but other than that, nothing outside kitchen. Sounds draconian, but ive never had to get angry about mess and hes now a very tidy three year old.
My dc's cousin is nearly three and his mum has made him OCD about tidying and cleaning mess/hands. It's abnormal if you ask me, for a toddler to be stressed about mess and dirt, especially a boy (sorry for generalising but you get what I mean?)
Food and drink only allowed in the kitchen when DDs were small. It was a nice cheap treat to allow a picnic in the living room in front of the TV on high days and holidays.
I don't pay a lot of money for carpet and furnishings to have them covered in food.
Fergus, do you only have the one child? If so, you aren't really qualified to comment on how to manage three+ children.
Staying on top of one child spilling/dropping food is easy. Try doing it with three - one has just spilled their drink across the table, the toddler is launching pasta across he room, and third child has just fallen off his chair. Dealing with all three simultaneously is a world apart from supervising one house-trained three year old.
Lol HDee - whilst the fourth is in the toilet shouting 'mum wipe my bum'
OP I know what you mean about them migrating from table to lounge - I have 5 under 6 years. Admittedly all girls though
If you don't mind them eating in the lounge, could you put some kind of plastic mat (glorified table cloth) on the floor so that they can eat there?
Or to solve all issues, just give them dry food that cannot make any sticky mess?
Nope, HDee, I am one of six and our house was immaculate thanks to rules like that, so i believe I am qualified. I am expecting my second and will be equally firm. I refuse to live in a pigsty and will happily scrub a kitchen over and over again, but not an entire house when all it takes is strict enforcement of food wandering.
Lots of useful advice from those with one child here, I have 3 and no4 on the way, all boys so far and my house is also rather sticky. Migration also a problem here, someone always needs the loo/ nappy change during a meal. My 19/12 old is also very fond of shaking his sippy cup upside down, I'd almost be better giving him an open cup so at least there is only one 'splash' rather than a trail.
I do try to make them stay outside with lollies, and wipe hands (and faces) after meals but I am resigned to having a certain amount of stickiness for a few years yet. I guess it probably feels worse in rented accommodation?
If it helps, my three (only 3, though. Am hoping not to be blessed anymore...) were wee grubbers despite my best efforts. They are now 9, 7 and 5 - and we are out the worst of it.
I really think that if you have a bunch of kids in quick succession that 1. your house will be sticky and smell a bit peculiar 2. your carpet will have those tiny, weird black stains 3. you will have welly boots breeding in your hall and 3. your bikini line will extend to your ankles.
There was just not enough time or eyes in the back of my head to keep a clean house in my experience. Mind, there are
freaks better women than me who managed it...though, I suspect their kids lived in a cupboard most of the time...
It gets better. We're about to decorate, never really seen the point until now.
Fergus, come back when you have three.
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