This is a topic I would far prefer to ignore. It isn’t that I don’t like a tidy house. It just that it seems impossible to have in this season of life. However, fitting in homemaking responsibilities when you homeschool is part of the ‘job.’ The only question is how you approach it.
In my fantasy world, the boys would be attentive and quickly clean up the messes they generate. (Sometimes they DO a bit of cleaning like below.)
In reality, I can spend hours cleaning a room to have the younger ones come through like a tornado leaving destruction in their wake. My older boys just shrug and say it isn’t their mess to help clean.
I really believe that Rachel Carmen from Apologia had it right when she said something along the lines of “I can have a great homeschool day, I can have dinner on the table for 6 p.m. sharp, and I can have a clean house. I just can’t have it all on the same day.”
She’s so right. There are only 24 hours in the day and one woman can NOT do it all. With 3 boys to home educate, my own work via this website, and making time with my husband a priority, the time available to clean just isn’t much.
The ‘obvious’ solution would be to get the boys to pick up a chunk of the workload. Yet even with the boys being older and more capable, it seems like their motivation to be great helpers in the home is missing. This is becoming a character issue which we are working on and hope to end up with a tidier house in the process.
Instead of only relying upon their sudden interest in cleaning, I am doing a few things which I can control and will help in the long run.
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First off, I have been reinvigorated to declutter things from my house and my life after reading the soon to be released book, Unstuffed by Ruth Soukup (review coming soon!)
It is so true that the more you own the more it seems to own you. I have seen when traveling, whether staying in a hotel or our RV, that there are many things which I seem to live just fine without. Yet, upon a return home, I often do not feel a long term desire to simplify my life.
In the past few months, I have donated several large boxes and bags of items to charities. What is surprising to me is that even with a few full vehicle loads of things the house seems just as ‘stuffed’ and cluttered as before. To me, that’s an indication of there being plenty of other things just waiting to find new homes.
Secondly, I am streamlining what I can such as meal planning. When I don’t have a game plan, it can take over an hour to prep dinner even when the dish we cook takes under 30 minutes. It’s the “what should I make and let’s gather all the ingredients” game. When I plan ahead using a tool like Build a Menu , then life seems to just be rosier. No more last-minute runs to the grocery store for something we need to make dinner happen!
Third, I am planning out my days using tools like The 7 Minute Planner which has a section to help me define the MOST important must-do items on my list for the day and get them done in the morning.
What are ways that you fit in the homekeeping responsibilities in your house?
Do the kids have set chores and get them done in a timely fashion?
This post is part of the 5 Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents Blog Hop with the Schoolhouse Review Crew. Here is another group of awesome homeschool bloggers sharing their tips. Hop on over to see what they are talking about this week!
Kym @ Homeschool Coffee Break
Latonya @ Joy in the Ordinary
Leah @ As We Walk Along the Road
Lisa @ Farm Fresh Adventures
Lori @ At Home: where life happens
Meg @ Adventures with Jude
Megan @ My Full Heart
Melanie (Wren) @ finchnwren
Melissa @ Mom’s Plans