Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Kids and messes

Katherine @ Raising 5 had a great post on keeping things picked up with the kids. She asked for readers to share how they deal with the messes that come with kids.

My philosophy is 'PICK YOU BATTLES'. There are certain things that drive me crazy.
*a dirty sink - either with dishes or just not rinsed out
*a sticky floor
*backpacks left in the living spaces
*jackets not hung up (or towels since it is Summer)
*dishes or food garbage left out
Most of the time I can deal with Mr. Potato Head pieces left out, blocks all over the floor, or the kids making a mess in the kitchen. That is unless something else stressful is going on and that one thing leads to a Momma Meltdown.

I want my kids to live, have a good time and make some messes. I also want them to know how to clean those messes up. All the way up. All my kids have chores that they are supposed to do and do do for the most part. They all need encouraging from time to time to make sure their jobs are done.

Yesterday in a very short amount of time we had two big messes. Eli (11) dropped a bowl of milk with cereal. It exploded all over the dining room and into the kitchen. Sticky milk mess. Then Eva (7) dropped a container of watermelon and it exploded on the other side of the kitchen. Sticky fruity mess. My flesh wanted to scream. But they were both accidents. They cleaned and helped clean up the messes and all is OK. Mom didn't freak (this time). My house may not always be tidy, but it is mostly clean. ;o)

With this many people living in the house and friends here all the time the house is going to get messy. That is OK. I found for my sanity I need to know what is important, what are my triggers, and live accordingly.


Sarah@Life in the Parsonage said...

How true! Isn't it funny how we each have our "certain things" that need to be done :)

I hate anything on the dining room table, and stuff on the counter tops...I'm forever clearing it off...onto the desk (which is a disaster!)

Beth said...

Jill, I love coming to your house... your home is always orderly without that rigid feeling.

Jeanine said...

There are certain things I can't stand either...a dirty sink being one of them. I used to be so "rigid" clean but all that changed once I became a mom. I grew up in a house that was always perfectly spotless. I don't mean this in a negative way against my mom, but one of her main goals was an "immaculately clean house." It is still that way. I, however, am not my mother. My house would drive her crazy...completely insane! Today's goal is to get the clean laundry off the kitchen table and counter, vacuum up dog hair, change the sheets and continue to do laundry just just seems to multiply like rabbits. Our house has a very "lived in" look!

Katherine@Raising Five said...

That is excellent advice! I love a clean sink and floor, too, but so many other things do not bother me. Sometimes I wish I were just a little more OCD but I suppose my kids are glad I'm not =)

I'm so glad to meet you here. What a blessing to get to know you and your family!

mholgate said...

Thank you for your post Jill! I have never really thought about messes that bother me vs. messes that don't. That's one worth discussing with my husband! Between the two of us, maybe I can prioritize better and stress less!

Tricia said...

Great post! I can so relate. My kids know some (probably have too many) of my cleaning pet peeves. I really try to keep things in perspective, and hopefully the Lord is helping me in this area too!

mholgate said...

Jill, I sat down and talked with my husband about what's important to him as far as a clean house goes. What a great conversation! A couple of them were things that I would never even have thought about. : )

I look forward to visiting you more in the future. Can I add you to my blog friend list?