So as I mentioned in my previous blog, I went on the warpath. What was it that caused this big explosion and the putting of my big foot down? I will tell you! My house. Yup. MY HOUSE. I WANT IT BACK! I'm sick of sharing it with my kids! I know that sounds cruel and selfish, but I promise you, it isn't. It's balancing the world back again. Let me explain. Since the kiddos came into this world, the ENTIRE house has been devoted to them. Same with the yard and the car. And that is coming to a HALT. They are now old enough to have designated spaces. Both recently had birthdays, and this was my present to myself! So, here is how it is going to go. They each have their own rooms. So, they each get their rooms, the back yard (and all the crap they have back there!), and their playroom downstairs (which is almost the entire bottom of our house!). NO WHERE ELSE! So, no toys in the kitchen, dining room, living room or even the garage. We have a shed for all of the outdoor things to include their toys... and my garage is one car so it's small. I may remove them from the bathroom! But I am waiting on that. We do have two, but the second is downstairs and we don't use it much except when working outside. Not to mention, all of their toys are stored in one simple basket and aren't that big of a deal in there. Anyways, I feel this is fair at this point. I want my house back! I want some yard! I want some space! There is not ONE SINGLE PLACE in the house that is MINE. NO WHERE. Hubby has his office and the kids have ample space. Me? Nada. No where. So, I'm taking some back! Even if these spaces are 'community' space, I want them free of clutter and craziness. I need this before I lose my ding dang mind!!!!!!!!!!
I said, some of you may think this is harsh or cruel. I would say I'm
sorry you feel that way, but really, I'm not. Kids need to grow up and
learn to take care of themselves and their spaces.... and to respect
other people's spaces. Some day, they will have room mates or share the
house with another person or whatever and they need to learn these
basic things. We've been doing some chores, but nothing major and I
feel like it is time for more set chores, too. I had a basic list and I
never printed it. We just started making it part of the routine. But I
think they may need more. I think, they need them more often and to
make it a habit. And now that they aren't babies or toddlers, it is
time to start putting these in place. Well, more firmly in place. I
had already somewhat started this, truth be told. I had told the kids
they could play in the front yard, but all toys MUST be put up as soon
as they are done or they were GONE. I still allow bikes, chalk, and all
of that, but so far, they've not brought any others. And that is FINE
by me. They have the whole back yard that is fenced and it is large, so they keep
everything there. Works for me! Same with the car. They can have ONE
toy, but it needs to go back in the house at the end of each trip. So
far, so good. I try really hard to keep my car cleaned out myself.
Whenever we stop, I just grab whatever trash and throw it away. Then I
go to the wash and all that regularly. At least I was until all this
rain... So, it's only fair that some stricter rules come into play in
the house. I'm one person who can only do so much and I need them to do
more now that they are older and can. Mostly because the constant fight to keep things up and out of my way is becoming cumbersome. With 2 kids, 2 adults, 2 dogs, and 4 cats, I just can't be constantly fighting for space. And at the end of the night, I need a couple of peaceful areas where I can relax. If there is a huge amount of clutter and disorganization everywhere, I can't do that. If it's in their rooms or downstairs, fine. But not up here. Up here, I NEED somewhere that my brain isn't going to fight. That isn't to say they won't clean those rooms -- they will. It will be a part of chores! But if we are tired one night, I just want to be able to get them in bed and chill and not be surrounded by everything. I'm starting to feel like I'm drowning!
So, that was part of my decluttering. There are too many toys, too many books, and too little me. That is why today I started going through everything and really purging out a ton. I just can't do it anymore. I can't keep holding this stuff and feeling like I can't breathe. I managed to clean out quite a bit. And I told hubby if it won't fit their rooms or downstairs, it goes! Or other things have to to make room. And once their toy bins are full (they each have one in their rooms) they either have to not get anything or get rid of other things to make room. Already, I feel better. When I get to take this off tomorrow, I will have gotten rid of one box of books so far (there are more to go through) and around 3 bags of toys. All random things they NEVER play with. Broken or missing things were tossed. Everything that had been in the living room is now either donated, trash, or in a bedroom or downstairs. Ahhhh! Feels so good! And while they weren't happy, today was a much more peaceful day. They actually played LESS electronics and watched less TV... which we've been working on, but they hadn't made much progress. Aka, they would gripe. But they didn't today. They played in their rooms and downstairs and when there was one fuss, they quickly made up... without me stepping in!
When I told hubby, I expected some reluctance, but he agrees that we, as adults, need some adult space. Especially now that they are no longer infants or toddlers. They are big enough now to have the spaces that they have and not have to constantly be taking over the entire house. Babies/toddlers have so much stuff these days... swings, carseats, diaper bags, etc. It just seems to multiply. But it seems we are on the back side of that now because they no longer need diaper bags, swings, and their carseat stays in the car. They don't need bottles or specialty plates/spoons. They are basically using what we use. It only seems right that they now use their space for their things and the 'community' space be clean and ready for everyone's use. And let's be truthful here -- I'm sick of people stopping by and my house looking like Target's toy section exploded everywhere!
Now, let me be clear, I realize it won't ALWAYS be perfect. That isn't what I want. I just want some breathing room. Some space that looks like I actually DID something at the end of the day. And some plain ol' quiet time at the end of a busy day to sit and not feel overcome with dread.
If that makes me mean and selfish, so be it. Sometimes you have to put your foot down. We will see how this goes....