Something funny happened after Deacon was born... major messes started to get under my skin. What I used to breeze past without a second thought - dishes in the sink, cluttered counters, a pigsty of a playroom - now gave me reason to pause and take notice. Staying neat and organized has never been my strong suit. I can admit it - take one step into my house and it's pretty obvious : ) Chaos never used to bother me. And to a certain point, it still doesn't. The playroom and kitchen get trashed daily. But come about 7 p.m. when both kids are sleeping soundly for the night, I turn into a clutter-busting, cleaning fool. Daniel thinks it's hilarious to see me zoom around the first floor of our house, picking up, wiping down and putting everything back in it's place. Of course I illicit help from the hubby once in a while, but for the most part I have my nightly clean-up down to a science. My rule? I can't sit down and relax for the night until the toys are picked up, the sink is empty of dirty dishes and the counters are wiped down. One night Daniel "helped" me and threw all the puzzles back onto the shelf... WITHOUT PUTTING THE PUZZLE PIECES BACK WHERE THEY BELONG! That night he also put non-musical instruments back in the play drum AND non-animals back in the play ark. I almost put HIM out in the dog house. It may not be perfect, but everything has it's place and it's a system that works.
Ok, so this may not sound too foreign or earth shattering to many of your super mamas out there. But this is a BIG change for messy old me. I used to clean when there was just no other option (i.e. the sink was so full of dishes that I couldn't wash my hands). I'm not a slob, but I definitely kept "contained messes" around the house. When I felt the messes were no longer "contained" I would clean up. But there is something about having two kids that just doesn't allow that method to work anymore. Maybe it's the inherent chaos that comes with being home all day with two children. Or maybe the secret spells my neat nik sister has been casting over me since birth finally took hold. But whatever the reason, something in my brain clicked and coming downstairs to clutter in the morning drives me nuts!
Oh, and before you go assuming my house is now a pristine museum where you can eat off the floors, let me bring you back to reality... : ) This magical cleaning spell that I am under only holds true for the first floor of the house. I still could care less about the upstairs, about laundry, and about making my bed. That's why I consider myself "leaning into" organization. I haven't made the full head-first dive into the world of neatness - I'm just kind of leaning in and checking it out. So far, it's been good. So maybe next will come laundry. You know I've REALLY embraced organization when I willingly clean the bathrooms. Pigs may fly before then though, so don't hold your breath... : )