Monday, February 13, 2012

Reality Check, Disappointment, Frustration and Ramblings...

It's time to get real again with my house and what's not working for me. I read this fantastic post this morning (here - go read it. I'll wait til you come back). I was so jealous. Then I LOL'd pretty hard and felt better about myself. I read this after I had a crying pity party because I seem to have a two year old who's having a hard time being 2 and is often quite difficult (he screamed through Winco because I had the audacity to take a phone call from my brother) and then I came home to what you see below and so I cried. I'm pregnant. Random emotions are allowed and encouraged.

Here might be some shocking news for you: I'm a huge time waster. I'm pretty sure I've been this way my whole life. If I can put it off til the last possible minute, I will. If I can avoid it, I will. If I can put on blinders and pretend it's not there, I will. I do this in a lot of aspects of my life: problems I don't want to deal with, emotions I don't want to feel, etc. I married a man remarkably similar to me in this respect. Between the two of us, a lot of stuff gets left undone. It's just a fact of our lives. I don't say this to point fingers or be mean or anything like that - it's just the honest truth. Nick & I are procrastinators and we border on down right lazy for some things.

When I read this list (from the link I provided above), I was so jealous and excited at the same time. Jealous because I want ALL of that for myself and excited because I thought she was going to show me the plan on how to do it. Her list was:
  • I've compiled and categorized enough healthy, inexpensive and easy recipes that I have a 90 day dinner menu (complete with theme nights like pasta Monday and slow-coooker Thursday) and I have the grocery lists to match.
  • There is nothing in my house that we don't use. I've ferociously weeded out the clutter and sent it packing via Craig's List or Goodwill.
  • Everything I didn't get rid of is now beautifully organized into colorfully labeled containers. If you're ever visiting and you need something, just ask me - I totally know where it all is.
  • I now have a weekly schedule with time carved out for blogging, housework, play dates, park time, library time, and other activities we've been wanting to try but never got around to.
  • For those days we stay home, we've got a dependable routine that the kids can rely on. It includes stuff like art time, outside time, story time and bath time.
  • Remember when I told you C isn't really down with napping anymore and I was worried about ever getting anything done again? I completely solved that problem by putting together some genius quiet time kits (one for each day of the week so he doesn't get bored). They're crammed with busy bags, audio books, and learning activities he can do independently.
  • I finally got our budget down to a science using a combination of the cash envelope system and We're saving tons! (and while I was at it I updated our wills, life insurance, and retirement planning).
  • Thanks to evernote and some other handy apps, I will never again miss an appointment or birthday. (If something does somehow sneak by me, I have a birthday closet with pre-bought gifts and cards - thanks to the new budget and organization I now have the space and money for it.)
  • I also joined a gym and started exercising regularly (part of the new weekly schedule). The kids love playing at the drop off center while I'm burning calories.
  • I went through all 2,000 of my digital photos, edited them, imported them to yearly photobooks and backed them all up online. I've also caught up on my personal blog and am regularly contributing to it.
  • Last but not least, the hubs and I have a set-in-stone date night that we never miss and we've recently instituted family game night.

(List copied from Modern Parents Messy Kids)

I took a look around my house and well, here's where I get real and show you exactly what's staring at my back right now. I'm not ashamed to share these with you. I'm annoyed at myself that I let it get this way, but my house also spends a fair amount of time not looking this way:

  1. Pile o' clutter from grocery shopping this morning
  2. Pile o' dishes waiting to go into the dishwasher
  3. Pile o' books waiting to be given to some one else to read
  4. Pile o' Ben's crud
  5. Pile o' crud to throw away (my husband is super good at taking stuff allllllll the way to the sink, but not to the trash can below)
  6. Ben's toys waiting to be put away
  7. Random dishtowel. Why on the floor? Because that's where Ben likes it.

Moving to the left, and here's a shot of the dining room in it's current state (because why clean the mess when you can blog the mess and share with random people?)

  1. Left over lunch mess to clean up & put away
  2. Ben's entertainment from this morning...
  3. continued from #2 above
  4. Nick's sock. Good place for it, eh?

Now, if I turned around, this is the look down the hall towards my room & the guest bath...

  1. Ben's trike. That he will not ride. He likes to push it around instead. This is where it ended up last time he played with it.
  2. My old sneakers. Why are they in the hall? Cuz I'm lazy, just like my family.
  3. Ben's snow boots. Why are they in the hall? Because that's where I tossed them after I found them buried half way down in Ben's hamper.
  4. Tiny, furry, house destroyer #1
  5. Ahhh, nothing like a fine sheen of dust to really class a place up.
  6. If I had thought to do a #6 when I was editing the photo, I would have tagged the photo wall as #6. Updating these pictures has been in my to do list for over a year now.

And that bring me to one of my banes of existence. Our front living room. The prior owners had this set up as a media room. In the 4 & 1/2 years we've lived here, this has been our hodpodge room. Right now it's in transition. I want to make a play room for the kiddos slash craft space for me in there, so let's take a gander at the current sight that greets me when I go that way:

  1. An old toy of Ben's I'm trying in vain to sell on Craigslist.
  2. Our ripped up chaise that's too big for our living room and only gets used by tiny, furry, house destroying (and furniture destroying) pets that take their claws out on it.
  3. More scatter of Ben's toys. The stroller is usually pushed against the wall - I shoved it out of the way when I was measuring the room.
  4. My sad, neglected craft desk. I haven't sat there since like... November.

And one more view of sad room:

  1. Ahhh our beautiful shaggy paint line (left the tape up too long) that's been that way since we painted. Like 3 years ago.
  2. Pile 'o crap. Dad's pictures, granny's pictures, my randoms I don't know what to do with.
  3. Oh, look. It's the tiny, furry, house destroyer again. Any one wanna cat?!?!? Or two??
  4. My paper hoarding storage.

Those shelves are in the process of being cleaned off. All my books got moved into my room (where I read most often) and I'm in the process of playing around with this:

A to scale version of that room so I can play with furniture layout and try to get the best flow. It's intimidating and looking at it hurts my head.

So I look at my mess and I look at what I want to be doing with my life and I get frustrated and overwhelmed. I have a crappy routine. I do our laundry & grocery shopping on Monday's, Ben's laundry on Tuesday's, Tumble Time on Wednesday's, we try to hit the library on Thursday's and that's it. I attempt to clean the kitchen at least once every day and pick up all of Ben's toys that have migrated out of his room through out the day before he goes to bed. The rest of the house work seems to get fit in when 1) it's so foul I can't stand it anymore or 2) I happen to think about it.

I want a more defined routine. And you know what? I make them. ALL THE TIME. And then before I know it, it's been 3 months since that routine and I'm not following it since 3 days into it, so I come up with another one. None of them seem to last.

What the crap am I going to do with myself when I have a toddler AND a new born? Aside from losing what's left of my mind anyway....

Oh and my MA-JAH disappointment. Nick has been asked to travel to Seattle for work the next two weeks. I. Can't. Go. UGH! I looked at tickets for me & Ben to fly. Almost $700 for the two of us. Nope, not doing it. I thought about driving. I could totally do that. Nick doesn't want me to (and I can't blame him), so more than likely, Ben & I won't be going. I have been dying to get back to Seattle for 3 years. Right now, it's looking like it's not going to happen for me this time. If I wasn't planning a trip to Florida in a few months, I'd totally go. But I have other things I need to spend my tax money on and UGH I HATE BEING GROWN UP SOME TIMES!

End rant.

And end random post about my dirty house and how lazy I am. You're welcome.

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