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Flybabies, please help - I'm struggling!

(6 Posts)
picklepie555 Wed 06-Aug-08 08:46:48

I've been trying to Fly for about a month or so now and I'm starting to struggle!! I swish and swipe everyday, I set the timer and go at the cleaning for 15 mins at time getting lots done or sometimes I don't set the timer and just try and go at it hammer and tongs and I've had a number of decluttering sessions, as well as following some of the other daily practices. However I seem to be chasing my tail at the moment and its driving me nuts. I'm a SAHM to two little darlings, DD just 3 and DS 18 months, they are too young to understand the concept of keeping things tidy and clean (although my eldest does love a good run around with the feather duster!! And helps me tidy toys away at the end of the day) however during the day no sooner have I tided one pile of toys and mess than another is being created in the other room! It's just constant and I can't seem to keep on top of it. I keep striving for the neatness I so crave and it's so frustrating. Although our house is not a complete mess I'm embarrassed to invite certain people around because I when I visit their houses I'm flabbergasted at how PRISTINE they keep them..I mean absolutely PERFECT, not a thing out of depresses me that I know I can't get my house as tidy and neat like theirs, I just couldn't do it, I don't know how they do it, what is their secret?? Are all your houses like this?? How do you keep on top of it all, entertain two toddlers, clean, tidy, create meals, and don't get me started on the laundry....its a full time job on its own, all that folding, hanging out, putting away, carting up and down the stairs, how do two small people create such a lot of extra washing?? I also suffer from the dreaded maternal guilt of not giving my children enough attention or playing with them enough when I'm cleaning. The other day my dd said "mummy don't do the hoovering and all those things, play with me"blush

Maybe I'm striving for the perfection too early on, but its bringing me down. As a previous sufferer of PND, I know that the house not being perfect was maybe a factor in making me feel low, and so I learnt to let it slip and not fret about it too much, but then it built up and I knew it was time to do something about it. But now its becoming too much of an issue again and I'm not finding it easy.

I could really do with some pointers from you Flybabies in the know to get me back on track (or please just give me some motivation)sad

ColumboJumbo Wed 06-Aug-08 13:57:05

Well I don't know about your friends whose houses are pristine, but I know for sure that if I invite someone round, then my house is really, really clean, because I've scrubbed and cleaned it specially before they come. Usually it bears no relation to my normal standards!

Most of the time I'm like you, trying to keep going with the baby steps and chasing my tail, confronted with Mount Washmore which at one point got so bad that I hid it in the ensuite while the MIL came to stay. I had to clamber over it to get a shower and kept worrying that she would somehow need to go in there and see it, and my terrible secret would be out <slattern emoticon>

So anyway the point being, maybe they are obsessive compulsive and spend all their time cleaning and not letting their kids have their toys out, maybe they just have a manic clean up when they know someone will be coming, maybe they've been doing FLY or the equivalent for ages and just have it all down pat - who knows? Don't feel bad about it. Don't think about them. Just know that you're doing your best esp. with 2 under fives - seriously. Don't they always say anyway that HVs view a completely pristine house when you have small children as possibly indicative of a certain level of neglect just as much as a terribly dirty house could be (the implication being if you spend all your time cleaning, how much attention do you have left for your kids?).

I can't really give you advice since I'm a beginner FLYbaby myself but you certainly aren't alone - I totally identify with yr feelings as regards getting low when the house isn't perfect, and I only have one toddler on the loose!

Good luck! Don't forget to take breaks! It's part of the program!

lucysmam Wed 06-Aug-08 15:05:53

I don't think you can realistically expect to have a pristine house with two toddlers running around all day! Just do what you can and don't worry about the rest of it, it all falls into place eventually

I'm a SAHM as well and often find that my lo who's 18mo will only play on her own for about 15mins at a time. So I use her as my timer say to tidy the bathroom and give it a quick clean whilst she's playing (our bathroom is downstairs at the back of the house so i can still keep an eye on what she's doing)

On a morning before bringing her downstairs I'll make both our bed and hers and pick out clothes for us both which I bring down to the bathroom &get washed n dressed together (unless I'm feeling lazy in which case i have been known to stay in pj's and potter round til well past mid-day). Then we have brekky and then she watches 'me too' on cbeebies which i know keeps her occupied long enough to straighten the kitchen and bathroom.

After that I normally read the mission and babystep for the day and try to tackle that. washing, if it's being done as I only wash on certain days and only if there's a full load, gets pput in first thing as we get up and put out while she's occupied.

I do upstairs while mil or oh watch my lo and don't even bother contemplating the living room until she's fast asleep as there's just no point with crumbs and toys and stuff cluttering all day.

I honestly don't think its possible to keep a house perfect with kids and you just have to take a 'back-seat' so to speak and do what you can when you can. Hats off to anyone who does have a pristine house but mine certainly isn't and i wouldn't expect that of anyone with kids to be either, you have to expect some kind of chaos because it comes with the territory imo.

Probably not use to you and a bit of an essay upon re-reading but guess what I'm trying to say is just do what you can and if certain people would pull faces at the thought of having toys and bits strewn about then they're not worth the hassle really.

EustaciaVye Wed 06-Aug-08 15:43:25

Firstly, dont panic about housework. It really isnt worth it.

Flylady was set up for people like us who struggle keeping their houses in order. Did you go through the babysteps each day? Have you built your own routines?

I found that by building morning/afternoon/evening routines (which take up about 45 mins per day in total I would say) then you can begin to keep on top of the common tasks and start work on the cluttered areas.

Why dont you join us on the flylady daily thread? We are all at different stages but if there are some new babysteppers we can start linking to each daily step as well as the daily mission and hopefully help motivate you.

Finally, dont compare your house to other people's. You have no idea what they do to get theirs pristine. They may have a cleaner, OCD husband, very bored children etc.....If your house is a mess it takes time to clear it, that's all.

picklepie555 Thu 07-Aug-08 17:25:18

Thanks so much everyone, you've been such a help. Made me realise I've been letting it get on top of me too much and was being unrealistic and guess what, I've done so much today in just 3x 15 mins sessions. I must keep using the timer more, seem to get things sorted when I do, otherwise I'm wandering aimlessly from mess to mess.

Also helps to leave the tidy up and cleaning up sessions until at least one of the kids is asleep! grin I've even managed to do some painting, reading and general playing with the kids today, as well as taking them to an outdoor kids festival all yesterday pm! so I'm a much happier, not so guilty feeling bunny today! (Upstairs is a pigsty though,blush but hey ho! there's always tomorrow!)

Now to get on with dinner before His-nibs is home!hmm. Thanks again everyone, great help!! x

lucysmam Thu 07-Aug-08 17:31:36

glad you're feeling better about things picklepie, I always find properly cleaning up easier without lo too but the timer thing helps with general tidiness and decluttering!

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