My sanity. Time-out with a cup of tea, something sweet and either a good book or a pen and paper helps to keep me feeling sane. There are days I count down the time until my daughter has a nap just so I can do nothing at all. It used to make me feel guilty, especially when my husband got home from work and the house was a mess. But it is so enjoyable that I no longer feel guilt – in fact, the time out helps me to be a more present mum for my daughter all day.
Cleaning is a source of entertainment for my daughter; she loves following me while I vacuum and she is starting to ‘help’ pack up her toys. She also loves it when I pack the dishwasher (I know, a bit weird). But this means she is occupied while things get done and I suppose it’s teaching her that things need to go away and they don’t magically right themselves.
It is too risky. Before you have a child you say things like “they will just have to fit into my lifestyle” and “I won’t creep around the house to avoid noise, they will get used to it”. And once that bundle arrives, you finally understand that sleep and routines are your life and you do everything in your power to keep them asleep. If my daughter doesn’t have about 2 hours sleep during the day, the afternoon is ruined and her sleep at night is impacted. It is just simply a risk I am not willing to take.
A clean house is not my priority; a happy mum is. It’s true that a tidy house can lead to happiness for some however, I was blessed with the ability to be fairly nonchalant about having a perfect house. I do prefer it to be clean and it is nice to look at when it’s at its’ best but mess is a toddlers middle name and I figure while she goes around the house systematically pulling everything from its’ place, the least I can do is keep calm.
Many hands make light work. Cleaning is much better with more people to help. Often the first thing we do of a weekend as a family is clean the house. It is quicker even if one of us takes our daughter outside while the other cleans, it makes for an easier and more efficient house clean. It isn’t the best way to start the weekend however, it never takes long, and means we can ‘relax’ knowing that everything is tidy (for the next 10 seconds).