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How do you stop your house descending into a pigsty?

(6 Posts)
AngelDog Wed 08-Jul-15 21:35:44

My boys are 5.5 and 2.9. By the end of the day the house is a complete bombsite and getting them to tidy up is a very long and stressful process.

We take a pretty unschooling approach and they spend quite a lot of time entertaining themselves while I do cooking etc.

Any tips?

ommmward Wed 08-Jul-15 22:17:54


AngelDog Wed 08-Jul-15 22:31:38


Saracen Wed 08-Jul-15 23:22:59

Go out more. The laundry still piles up, but much of the housework is eliminated if nobody is at home messing the place up.

I know this is a fairly unpopular view, but I never made my kids tidy up when they were small. As you say, that's a long and stressful process. I don't buy the idea that you must start when they are young or they'll never do it, any more than I think you have to make them start reading or leaving their parents at four or they'll never want to do it.

It was easier to start when they were old enough to be reasonably competent at it and understand which side their bread was buttered on. "I don't think I'll have time to take you swimming this afternoon unless I can get the bedroom tidied up and all the washing hung out" may not cut it with a 2yo but works a treat with a 9yo.

Nigglenaggle Thu 09-Jul-15 08:53:51

Definitely go out more grin. Also embrace the dirt - the house doesn't have to be perfect and I find even the kids eventually say 'Mummy! No playing! Must clean floor very dirty!' which I then embrace like Mary Poppins on speed and we all have fun cleaning grin I'll let you know how it turns out long term, but it works for now smile DH and I both have a naturally high mess tolerance though, I know not everyone can do it. I also think that for that to work, all of the houses adults need to participate in cleaning, otherwise the kids just see it as one persons job and wonder why they're not doing it.

AngelDog Thu 09-Jul-15 23:05:23

I am naturally very messy and hate tidying but DH doesn't have such a high tolerance as me.

We had a long period of not requiring tidying up and the house became impossible to live in. For us the key is doing it daily because otherwise it becomes such a mess that clearing up is too daunting.

I like going out more. Part of the problem is that special dietary requirements mean I spend a lot of time on food prep & clear up, and that gives them too much opportunity to wreak havoc.

Today was a winner though: go out to home ed group till really late, have DH come home early due to train strike & no work. Instead of shouting at the kids to clear up, I watched him hoover. smile

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