Keeping a clean house is a lot of work
Most people have been in the following situation: An estranged relative or friend calls for an impromptu visit, and with no other polite choice, you invite them in. Unless you live and die for marta stewart live, you probably have less than fifteen minutes to hide all the embarrassing details of your life; your dirty clothes, your meaningless magazines, your half-eaten sandwiches that have become crusty with age. These things and more you quickly throw in the trash or hide in the closet. Hopefully, by the time your guests arrive, you’ll have made your home look somewhat presentable. You’ve probably ended the cleaning frenzy by splashing some water on your face, using it to keep your place clean from then on. It’s a lot of work, isn’t it? Double if you have children.
The phrase ‘clean as you go’ has never been more important than when you have a house full of children. Most parents have a system to keep chaos to a minimum and the following are just a few helpful tips from those of us who have lived to tell the tale.
Create a toy room
Even if you don’t have an extra room to spare, having a space in the house specifically for storage of your children’s toys goes a long way. In your battle to hold on to adulthood, having a space with a door you can shut against anything that’s primary in color and unceasingly cheerful is priceless. Try to remember not to lock your toddler in while you sweep up the squeaky plastic.
Toy Baskets will save your sanity
Having a toddler-sized basket that your little one can fill with the toys of her choice and then carry to the room of her choice makes it easy to stop the dreaded “toy spread.” When they are done tossing/playing/chewing their treats, they can throw them back in the basket and drag them back to the toy room. Throwing their toys in the basket is always endlessly entertaining and gives you an opportunity to teach them how to put things away when they’re done with them. Of course, many adults could use that lesson too…
Find multipurpose storage
Toys that are also storage spaces are incredibly convenient. For example, if your boy or girl is obsessed with Thomas train toys, play tables are tall enough to allow quite a few boxes or toys to fit under. Fortunately, they’re also low enough to create enough shade that no one can see exactly how much you’ve packed under them. These are clever ways to hide the hysteria.
Keeping your home looking like an adult living in it instead of a neighborhood daycare center is a daily struggle. No matter what your cleaning routine is, there will be a part of the day when you look around and almost every square inch of your carpet has something plastic and shiny on it. There are blocks stacked by the door, Hot Wheels pushed on the sofa, and Thomas the Tank Engine has gone off the rails somewhere between the bathroom and the kitchen. It is possible that he can survive in this anarchy without any problem, but God forbid an acquaintance would pass by and judge his abilities as a father by the state of his home. Not to mention, the last thing he needs when his little darlings are finally asleep is to spend an hour or so tidying everything up. When it comes to maintaining that comfortable feeling of “home” for every member of your tribe, including those over thirty, order is essential.