Are You an Organized Mom?
Really. I’ve tried, . . . many times,. . . but alas, I’ve failed miserably.
In my dreams my house is perfectly organized, beautifully decorated, functional, and always spotless (Woo! That last word was kind of hard for me to type).
Since we are a large homeshooling family that spends a lot of time together, we have a very active home. This includes 4 rambunctious (in a good way) and always wrestling little boys who at last count had over 3,000 Lego and Kre-o toy pieces (yes, they counted them) that I find myself sucking up with the vacuum cleaner on a regular basis, not to mention the truckload of Bendaroos, action figures, trains, and tracks, that I keep stepping on in the wee hours of the morning as I stumble down the hallway trying to make it to our kitchen.
I also have 2 lovely princesses who move seamlessly between being fashion designers, beauticians, film producers and artists within the same hour and have a tendency to leave their trail of inspiration from their bedroom upstairs to wherever they land downstairs. I would include our dog, but he stays outside and unfortunately, can’t be held accountable for anything that goes on inside.
Have I mentioned that our 4-year-old doesn’t like to wear pants?
He gets dressed in the morning, but somehow by mid-day I find his pants either in the hallway, bathroom, on the stairs, under my bed or his, and he’s running around the house as free as a bird.
And, then there’s their mama. Poor helpless case that I am. (They had to get their free flowin’ ways from somewhere, right?) I’m a big multitasker which means I read while I cook. Sew while I grade papers. Teach class. Work. Teach class. Work some more, and because everything that I do is somehow connected into this long fluid tapestry of activity, I’ve been known to leave a nice little trail behind, too.
Then there’s my dear quiet organized soul of a husband, who bless his heart, can do absolutely nothing but close his eyes and shake his head at the complexity of it all. If I look at him close enough I can almost see the phrase “SURELY, at least one of my offspring has my organizational gene.” swimming around in his head (Ha! Ha!)
Have you seen those commercials where the person talking is moving at a regular pace but it looks like everyone in the background is moving 100 miles per minute? Well, I suspect that this is how my husband feels when he watches us .Poor guy.
But, all is not lost! While I joke a lot about the craziness of our days, I’m very serious about getting it under control. I tried home management systems years ago, but realized that most of them didn’t take into consideration the dynamics of a large family, and when our kids were little, I was so tired most days that the most I could do was just go with the flow.
About a year ago we started talking to the kids about working together as a family to keep our home organized and functional. I made a giant chore chart that I have displayed prominently in their homeschool room which, amazingly, has worked very well for us (Should have done it years ago. So slow this one.) I’ve also learned to confine my own activities to “my space” which is my crafting room/office. I still multitask like crazy, but once I defined my space and stopped trying to be “everywhere” and do everything, my time became a lot easier to manage.
I didn’t grow up in a large family, so figuring out how to make things work for a family of 8 has been a slow process. But, thankfully, we’re getting there.
If you’ve ever struggled with home management skills, I’ve listed some really great sites below that I’ve run across recently that have been very helpful. Even if you are a super organized diva mama, you might find some tips to help you tweak what you’ve already been doin’.
Here’s to all you fantastic mamas out there tryin’ to make it work.
Have a super fantastic weekend!
Keep doin’ what you love!
SimpleDimples: Tips on organizing a home binder plus printables.
I Heart Organizing: Super site for organization inspiration. I like her idea for organizing your child’s school work: Make sure you stop off at her Tour of Our Home for some awesome “before and after” pics.
Professor Poppins: Great, great, ideas for organizing your home life with young kids. I don’t believe she updates the site any longer (a shame really, such good stuff), but you can still peruse the pages for a tummy full of organizational gems. Her idea below on creating chore cards (especially for the little ones who aren’t reading is a great idea).