Wednesday, August 24, 2016

8 Ways I Keep Up With The Housework So I Don't Lose My Sanity

Around here, housework is a never ending thing. Prior to starting this post, I tried to think of a time when 100% of the housework was done. You know, that moment where you sit down and exhale because the house is 100% cleaned, vacuumed, dusted, and there is nothing more to be done. After 15 minutes of rummaging through the housework files in my brain, I finally threw up my hands and said, "I've got nothing."

You know why? Because more than likely, it's never happened. 

Despite my overzealous devotion to housework, some of which could be deemed as slightly obsessive, I've never had that moment. With 3 kids, all of which have light tan fur and shed, and dark carpets, vacuuming is done every day. That's just the tip of the iceberg. There are dishes (several loads a day), dusting, laundry, sweeping and mopping the kitchen floor, cleaning the bathroom, straightening up Lisa's catch-all areas, wiping the counters and coffee area (154 times a day), folding blankets, straightening out the sofa cover (598 times a day), etc.

I'm always doing housework. Although Lisa helps out with stuff, I do the bulk of it. I work at home. I like it to be done a certain way. Thoroughly. And, enough of it has to be done before I sit at my desk at 10 a.m. to have my first cup of coffee. Clutter distracts me. Dried coffee drips at the coffee area distracts me. Unfolded blankets on the sofa, living room chair and home office love seat distracts me.

How do I keep up with the tedious task of housework, in addition to working at home, taking care of the kids and Lisa, sleep deprivation, meal prep, and everything between, without losing my sanity?

1. You know the 45-15 sitting-at-your-desk rule? I think it's 45-15. Or, it might be 50-10. I forget. Anyway, you're supposed to take a stretch break every hour if you spend large quantities of time sitting at a desk. I take a stretch-pace-walk-around-the-house-and-check-on-the-kids break every hour and a half. During this time, I also do something houseworky. Wipe the counters. Clean the toilet. Straighten the scatter rugs and runners in the kitchen. Something. Anything.

2. I utilize the overnight. Aside from doing a copious amount of writing, indulging in the only game I play on Facebook, and listening to stand up comedy, I do housework. Quiet housework. Dusting. Folding blankets. Cleaning the bathroom.

3. Wine. Yep.

4. I purposely think of something that has made me angry or frustrated. Or, I go through the stuff-I-haven't-quite-gotten-over-yet files in my brain. I spend hours on social media every day. There's no shortage of stuff that pisses me off. Angry housework is the best. If you've ever cleaned the house when you're angry, you know exactly what I'm talking about.

5. I'm not above using some of my girl tactics. Lisa knows when I've had an exceptionally challenging week. At times, I use that to my advantage. All it takes is me reminding her how much I despise catch-all's followed by my resting bitch face. At that point, she knows. For the next hour, Lisa goes through the house, cleans all of her catch-all areas, and, the best part, she'll do a few other housework chores to redeem herself. Vacuum. Fix the sofa cover. Fold blankets. Do dishes. Sweep the kitchen floor.

6. Wine. Ah. Huh.

7. I don't sweat the small stuff. Yes, I work at home. Yes, I'm slightly OCD with housework to the point where if certain things aren't done, it's a distraction. I can't focus. However, I don't sweat the stuff that doesn't hinder my focus. A few dishes in the sink doesn't need tending to right away. I don't vacuum the sofa or living room chair or love seat every day. I don't care about the amount of fur on my clothes. Shoes don't have to be neatly arranged by the back door. The kid's toys scattered throughout the house doesn't bother me.

8. Winter, Spring, Summer, and Fall cleaning. Most of you are familiar with Spring cleaning. It's the day, weekend, or week where a thorough cleaning of the house, from top to bottom, is done. In our home, we do that every season. That includes moving the furniture out of every carpeted room and washing the carpets. It's a royal pain in the ass, but we do it. Once every 3 months. It helps. A lot.

And more wine.

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