It's been about six weeks since we started our new routines around here and things are going well. It's amazing how my job change has affected everyone in a positive way. I'm not nearly as grumpy at the end of the day and I actually enjoy taking care of the household more than I used to. Since I'm working less and my husband is working more (overtime at work and 12 credit hours at school) I have been trying to keep the apartment tidier so that we can all live in a less stressful environment. This is really no easy feat for me as I am not a naturally neat person (woah, but I'm poet, apparently!) and I also have two very demanding little ones.
A few weeks ago I came across an awesome blog that is written by a young woman like myself who also lives in an apartment. She's a bit crunchier than I am and is already well on her way to living a more simple life. I really enjoy her blog because it gives me motivation to work towards a much more simple existence.
Last month she blogged about The Daily Seven, which is basically a list of seven daily habits to keep your household running a bit more smoothly. I thought this was the perfect way to help me stay on top of things so I revised her list a bit for my own use.
Laura's Daily Seven:
1. Get out of the house on time. I have never been a morning person, even after having two babies. Thankfully my kids aren't usually up at the crack of dawn but when they do get up they require no less than 394387 things. Diaper changes, bottle for Evelyn, healthy breakfast for Liam, help Liam find this one particular book that he must have, chase Evelyn out from under the table, etc. Most mornings I will end up waiting for Grandma (my mom who watches the kids while I'm at work) to arrive before I get dressed. Then I will chat with her for a few minutes, throw some coffee in my travel mug, give the kids kisses, tell them to be good for Grandma while I'm gone, and run out the door.
2. Do one load of laundry. Laundry is far from my favorite chore and unfortunately it seems to multiply by the hour. I find it a lot less overwhelming to do one or two loads a day rather than try to spend an entire weekend tackling Mt. Laundry. I also don't use a laundry basket for clean laundry because in the past when I dumped clothes from the dryer into a basket they never got put away. No one wants to go rummaging through a pile of wrinkled clothes looking for a pair of underwear.
3. Keep the kitchen sink clean. This...is a tough one. Dishes are another thing that seem to multiply by the hour. They aren't overwhelming if I stay on top of them but if I go to bed with a pile of dishes in the sink I don't feel like touching them the next day. Fast forward to the next day and there are even more random dishes sitting around and even less desire to do anything with them. Must remedy this situation.
4. Wipe down the bathrooms. This is also a tough task. I hate cleaning bathrooms but I know it will be a lot less overwhelming if I do a quick wipe down every night.
5. Clean up after myself. I admit, sometimes I am down right lazy. It's not uncommon for me to leave a dirty bowl on the kitchen counter or have three pairs of shoes near the front door. I really need to just take the extra 10 seconds to put items away where they belong the first time. It makes straightening up at the end of the day easier and it also provides a good example for my kids.
6. Review the next day's schedule. Once I get focused on a daily routine I totally space about phone calls I need to make, appointments I need to take the kids to, or activities I have already planned. In fact, just a few weeks ago I had completely forgotten about Evelyn's Early Intervention session until her teacher was knocking on the door! I must have looked really frazzled when I opened the door and said "Oh, it's the 30th, isn't it?" It's not that these sessions and appointments aren't important; it's just that time runs away from me and before I know it another two weeks have passed and it's time for a visit from Shannon. I really must make it a habit to review my calendar and to do list the night before so I know exactly what to expect the next day.
7. Ten minute clean up before bed. This is self explanatory and a GREAT idea. Before I go to bed I pick up any random toys or books, finish loading the dishwasher, put away any laundry, wipe down the table, etc.
I like having a list of things I need to do each day because it seems less overwhelming. Of course, there are some days that I don't do everything on this list (like the bathrooms...I really hate cleaning bathrooms!) and that's okay. Life is unpredictable, especially with a 3 year old and a baby!
Do YOU have a daily seven list or something similar? Please feel free to share! :D