I know some people say that it is okay for your house to be messy when you have a baby. To some extent, this is true, it is important to not be so focused on having a clean house that you never play with your children, but having a really messy house can really make parenting difficult. When the house always messy, you can never relax and enjoy your kids because you are always thinking about all the cleaning you need to do. Humans need structure in their lives. Order allows us to have peace.
I recently realized that I my kids and I really needed a little more order and structure in our lives. I realized that I felt overwhelmed by my house never being clean, and I was using the computer as an escape from my responsibilities. When I did clean, I would exhaust myself trying to clean everything at once, and then I would feel "burned out" from cleaning and wouldn't maintain it, and the house would soon deteriorate into chaos again. I really wanted to develop the concept of rhythm for my kids, as taught in Waldorf education (which I have been studying after Sheridan blogged about the changes she is making in her home now that her kids are going to a Waldorf-inspired charter school), but I realized it wasn't possible with the level of chaos in our environment.
I found a wonderful system for establishing habits of cleanliness. It's Flylady's Beginner Babysteps. I am on Day 8 today, which means I have been doing it for a week, and the improvement is slow, but it is lasting change, not a temporary fix. I feel like I am finally getting some control in my life. One of the routines is you get dressed first thing in the morning, from head to toe. This encouraged me to finally go out and get my hair cut. I hadn't had my hair cut since I was pregnant with my son, who is almost 9 months old. And my kitchen is clean, which means I can actually cook dinner for my family.
I have been limiting my computer time, and as a result haven't been working on blog posts as much. I have a second post in the works about the book I read, Sisters on Journey, which I will hopefully finish eventually. If you don't hear from me, I am probably either enjoying my kids or working on creating a more peaceful environment for them.