Is it possible for me to get back to the type of house I used to have?(19 Posts)
This might be rambly.
I used to have a spotless house. It was just me and my DS (then under 3). Then I became unexpectedly pregnant with DS2, also got a cat, had a bad relationship, had baby, ended relationship, got a dog, moved house a couple of times and lost my job. Lots of shit going on. Over that period I became really depressed and overwhelmed and the house went to pot. I developed hoarding tendencies and just didn't manage very well at all.
I am now several years down the line, I have a stable job, stable home, no relationships (which is good as it is stable) no new pets (and there won't be) and I feel like I'm almost back to where I wasn't before (with a couple extra mouths to feed) but the house is the one thing I still struggle with. I go through ebbs and flows where sometimes I have loads of energy and do lots of "deep" cleaning and get the house or part of it in a presentable state. But literally within hours it will be undone. Between DCs deciding to paint, or toss their dirty clothes around and cats making a mess with their food or peeing on my carpet it's just feels like I am fighting a losing battle and it makes me lose heart in trying so I get low for a few days, stop doing laundry, hoovering etc and before I know it the place is a disaster zone and I couldn't let anyone across the front door. I need to find a way to maintain a presentable Home. It doesn't need to be spotless but ready for someone to drop by at all times would be good. I can't seem to manage that except if I know someone is coming and I will stay up all night cleaning and hiding laundry.
Why can't I manage to keep it clean everyday? Other people have pea and children and their homes are lovely.
Just to add, I have created charts for the DC with jobs that are their responsibility and am tackling the cat peeing issue. Struggling to get DC to remember their jobs though.
Firstly don't be hard on yourself. I would declutter as much as you can. If everything has a home with its friends it is a lot easier to tidy up as you know where to put things away and so will the kids. When they have finished painting , they have to help you put the things away.
If you decide to declutter do it hy category, and make smaller sub categories if you don't have time. For instance if you do tge kitchen you could do tea towels and just keep the ones that you really like I find rolling towels and tea towels in tge drawers keeps them tidy. Take a look at the Marie kondo thread and just use the bits that are helpful to you
I hope that this helps you
I watch this with interest as this is exactly how I feel with 3 DS
I have started to gather everything that I'm getting rid of but I do this regularly but get stuck halfway through and end up stacking it all back into the spare room. I don't know why I can't seem to see it through and get rid of things. I have a broken microwave sitting on my kitchen counter for about 2 months it just needs taking to the dump.
I tell myself I will do a couple of items each day but it doesn't happen. Just maintaining ordinary, very basic life stuff seems to take me all day. Then I get to bed and remember all the things I was meant to do, plan to do them tomorrow and repeat the cycle.
My pre-children house was my mum's house and she did everything
Get out your calendar and schedule a day to do the one-off jobs. Only one job per day. And you must do that job, even if it means the regular things don't get done. If you use Google calendar, set yourself a reminder first thing in the morning. Be very specific so that you don't have to do any thinking while you're actually doing the job.
Monday - carry broken microwave to car
Tuesday - drop broken microwave at dump
Wednesday - fill one box with things to get rid of
Thursday - take box to donation centre
Friday - schedule jobs to do next week, while having cup of tea and feeling good about own productivity
Put a Tip Visit in your diary. Tell yourself no point going with just a broken microwave so see if you can fill your car.
Try and keep your bedroom immaculate. It will help you feel well rested and give you a sense of control over the house.
Allow the spare room to be the dumping ground but 1st of the month every month go in and make a Tip Pile and take it away the next day.
Oh these are. Good ideas. I like the 1st of the month being tip day. That could work. Rather than having a constant "must get to the tip with everything" rhyme playing in my head.
When I returned from abroad I had a lovely blank canvas to start from again and what's worked for me is not buying any house shit. Just no clutter, no spare nothing's to store or gather dust, no three months of supplies of loo roll or baked beans in case of zombie day, no 40 bottles of shampoo because it's on offer. Literally I could throw our lives in the back of a van tomorrow and drive off in a couple of hours now if I had to. And the major plus side of that is a lot less cleaning.
Are you me? My life has been turmoil for a good few years and even though things have settled now, I, (like you) have a whole house to tackle and it is emotionally (and physically) over whelming.
I also feel v ashamed of myself as even though I have tried to hide my issues from friends and neighbours - the state of the house exposes this - also feel sad for my kids living in a mess - and they are ashamed and know that this is not 'NORMAL" Messy house = Messy head.
BUT: I am slowly getting back on it. I have decided JUST to keep my kitchen and bathroom immaculate. This small step has made me feel more in control as these are the most important spaces for hygiene and family and friends use the most.
I also fell for the "deep clean" fallacy - having to do a really thorough job - which creates more chaos. But I spent 6 hrs on my kitchen deep clean one day last week - and it was so exhausting that I am now determined to KEEP ON TOP OF IT - 10 mins clean up twice a day - told my kids that I will keep this up until Christmas at least.
If anyone walked into my bedroom I would die - but I will get on top of that one day.
I agree with PP it is about getting rid of stuff... the less stuff you have the less there is to tidy, sort, store and clean. I also have hoarding type tendencies - just creates more work ie finding extra space for storing extra bottles of cleaning fluids etc which is just more stuff to manage and more clutter to oppress....
With my kids clothes - when I was on top of it I would limit them to say 3 short sleeved T shirts, 3 sweat shirts etc and this helped a lot.
Paperwork is the biggest issue for me to sort at the moment.
You need to be careful not to "churn" which is a recognised part of hoarding - so lots of indecision, sorting but just moving it from one room or cupboard to another. Worst was when I would have a major toy clear out - leave all the bin bags full of toys by the back door for DH to take to charity/recycle - he never got round to it and the kids just pulled all of it out to play with and distributed around the garden -- so an even worse situation that what we started with.
Newbrummie I have that sense of lightness and freedom when I am on holiday - we can easily exist out of an airline carry on - so why are we burdened down with the weight of clutter at home...!
This threat has me inspired - I am going to tackle the spare room tomorrow - might just get a skip - easier that the multiple trips tot he dump...
Every time you fill a bag for the charity shop put it straight into the car boot. When the boot is full take it all to the charity shop.
When and only when you have decluttered, go to Ikea for storage. They do great toy storage and also containers for the bathroom that stick to the tiles with suckers. Buy one for each household member's stuff.
Also buy a smallish box or basket each. Whenever someone leaves something lying about it goes in that box. When the box is full they have to sort it and bin items or put them away. Good luck!
another20 I feel very much the same, particularly the shame and feelings of guilt for my children. I would very much like for them to be able to have friends over without prior planning and not feel mortified that their friends can see the state of our house.
Jen that is why I concentrated on keeping the downstairs loo and kitchen clean as these are the only rooms guests will use - my kids are teens - so if their bedrooms are pits it is for them to clear (although I admit I am not the best role model) - the shaming can be crippling - I genuinely feel a lot better now - that I have these two rooms fit for purpose -- even fresh flowers and scented candles....!
Agree with others , you have to get the things that you are getting rid of out of thehiuse as soon as you can. The car boot is a good place as you can drop things off at the charity shop or tip.
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