The Rantings - For Everyone

Master Procrastinator’s Funk

I feel like I’m finally beginning to come out of the funk I feel like I’ve been in for the better part of a month.

Don’t ask me where exactly it was coming from, don’t ask me what was causing it and definitely don’t ask me how I’m managing to come out of it, because I have answers for none of these questions.

It seems like it happens when a series of things feel like failures to me. I get sick after the baby gets sick. I anticipated it and yet, did nothing to prepare. So, for three days, I laid on the couch doing nothing but whining about my sickness – while the world continued to move on around me.

The world of five kids and a partner who is working so hard outside of the house and procrastinators all around, and the world where Mom is too miserable to do anything. So, the dishes pile up and the garbage overflows and the clean laundry ends up all over the floor and no one is eating properly and everyone is just plain moody.

And then I get over my sickness and I realize how disgusting the house is and how unhappy everyone is, and how now I gotta clean all this shit up. And we know I’ll never get to it, because I’m me and just because I play the role of “The Cleaner”, doesn’t mean I’m actually good at it. Master Procrastinator is actually my superhero name!

And the to-do list just becomes so overwhelming that I can’t help but be completely rundown by it. Just emotionally and mentally exhausted. It gets to the point where the only thing I can even bring myself to do is click on decks of cards in Solitaire, in an attempt to numb my brain of all the crap that is going up there…

I’ve heard some people say that being a parent, especially a Mother, is the hardest job in the world. However, I’d like to clarify that being a homemaker – in the most basic sense of the word – is the hardest job in the world.

Sure, raising kids is hard. But it’s incredibly intuitive. It all comes to you by instinct. Well, that and common-sense. Yes, it’s overwhelming and exhausting in its own right. Yes, you have to actively put effort and time into it. Yes, it’s not easy at all.

But take away all the homemaking aspects, and it becomes a lot easier. Take away the bills to pay, take away the rent. Take away school and schedules and making and preparing meals that are not only, to some degree nutritious, but that your kids will also eat. Take away housecleaning and laundry and dishes for days. Take away all these things, and the job becomes a heck of a lot less overwhelming, time-consuming, mentally and emotionally exhausting.

Add into it my own self-imposed deadlines for stuff that I’m supposed to be getting done online – stuff that I started, stuff that I want to work on, stuff that I want to finish – and yet, with those deadlines looming I just feel paralyzed every time I try to get anything done. I’ve written before about staring at the screen just mindlessly clicking through tabs, not able to focus on anything for longer than half a second. Just feeling bogged down by it.

Ugh, I’m going to get over it all. I swear. It seems like one day I’ve got a handle on all of it, and then the next day I just can’t do anything. I hate these times…

This post is from The List and is for everyone.

TO DO: Fall De-Cluttering and Re-Decorating

So, let’s be honest. In terms of decoration, my house has none. Some of you may remember my one piece of wall art. Not even that exists anymore. And in terms of clutter, my house has an abundance of it. This is really a project of epic proportions, especially when you consider my house has three floors, four bedrooms and we’ve lived in it for almost five years.

Get Rid of Junk Furniture

Currently, we have an abundance of junk furniture. We have a reclining chair and washing machine in our basement, both of which do not work. We have broken dressers all over the place upstairs and all of our living room furniture is in dire need of replacement. For so long, we’ve just moved unusable furniture off to the side and out of the way, but now that we have the van, we need to dispose of the useless stuff.

Clear the Clutter

Between the milk crates and boxes stuffed full of records and the bookshelf filled with a bunch of books I’ll never read to the boxes packed to the brim with wires and the laundry scattered through the entire house, there is a lot of clutter taking up space in our place. It’s not just about organizing the clutter, it’s also about getting rid of all the excess stuff. The clothes, the papers, the books, the stuff.

Super Deep Clean

Every Spring and every Fall, we have an inspection that takes place. For this inspection, we super deep clean our house. A clean happens about every two or three days, a good clean happens about every week and a half or so, a deep clean happens about once a month (sometimes longer or shorter, depending on how well we’ve managed the other stages of cleaning) and a super deep clean happens around inspection time or when other special things are happening. We know we’ve got an inspection coming up soon, so it’s definitely that time again. Plus, after clearing everything out and organizing it properly, the super deep clean is going to be needed.

Zone the House

In almost every article I’ve ever read about getting your house organized, there is usually a section that talks about setting up “zones” or specific areas for specific things. For example, I know that I’m going to leave out my front door and come back in through my front door. I know that when I get in, I’m going to empty my pockets. I can then setup a “zone” in that area with a bowl and garbage can; the bowl to throw my pocket junk into and the garbage can for when I pull the bits of paper out of the bowl…

In our house, there are a few different “zones” that need to be created, especially the area I just described, although with stuff for the whole family. We need a front-door zone, a homework zone, a bathtime zone, a cleaning zone, a laundry zone and then the usuals, like the living room, kitchen, bedrooms, etc. Most of this is just creating the space for them, and some of it might include having to replace furniture or buy things to accommodate the zone.

Decorate My Zones

I started this post talking about decoration and then haven’t even mentioned it yet. Everything needs to be cleaned first and once the zones have been figured out, I’d like to add a personal touch of decoration to the spaces. Back at our front-door zone again (because it’s a great example area), I’d love to have a little mirror and a perfectly set up calendar, maybe even a nice chipper plant. I’ve seen some amazing zoning decoration ideas on Pinterest (See: Spaces to Die For) that I’d love to modify to work for our family, so it’s a matter of configuring our zones with what we have and then adding in the decorations.

Set Up a Schedule

It goes on the same premise of many of my other to-dos about setting up manageable routines. This one, more specifically to keep down on clutter and manage the cleanliness of the house between super deep cleans. This particular schedule consists of seasonal or annual chores, like changing out the winter closet with summer stuff or going through all the stuff to rid ourselves of junk. It should also include monthly chores like flipping the mattresses or changing the furnace filters. And finally, things we can do daily or weekly to keep up on the clutter and cleanliness, like using our zones or going through the mail immediately.

There’s a lot of printables around the web with these types of schedule and zoning practices, which I might use. Although like I said in my post about setting up a home management system, I’m not sure what method is going to work best for us, so it’s time to figure that out! And then work it until it works!

It doesn’t look so daunting when I put it into these big chunks like this and that makes me happy. However, I know that each of these headings has a huge list of to-dos beneath it and I know that once we start, that happy feeling will disintegrate entirely and will be replaced with an extreme lack of motivation. I figure each step will take at least a day and a half, but when it’s done and we’re just at the following the schedule point, it’ll be a hell of a great day!