Monday, February 4, 2013

Conquering The Messies: Part One & MYHSM Linky Party

Welcome to part one of Conquering The Messies!

Alicia left a comment asking me to do a post on, in her words, “how you conquered the messies.” If you saw my house today, you would say that I haven’t conquered anything completely. There are days where I get busy and I do not do my regular every day "maintenance cleaning," and things get, well….messy! However, my home is so much neater than it used to be. For the most part, I would not be embarrassed to have someone drop in today. Which is good, because it happens on a regular basis!

There will probably be a few posts on this subject, as I don’t think I can cover it all in one. Let me just start by saying that I was raised in a very large home. My mom loved to clean and she did it all herself. Can you believe it? I think I helped her dust once or twice, but we didn’t have any regular chores or anything, at least none that I recall. I was supposed to clean my room but it was never totally clean. Fortunately, I rarely kept anything so I wasn’t piling up the clutter.

When I moved out (with a roommate) I didn’t know how to clean a bathroom, cook or do my own laundry. You would think I’d learn fast. Instead I took my laundry home for my mom to do (hey, it was her idea, LOL!). Anyway, cleaning was not “my thing.” I had a roommate that was very neat and she insisted that I keep my stuff in my bedroom so our apartment stayed pretty neat. It wasn’t too hard to keep my room neat either as I just didn’t have that much stuff.

After my husband and I got married, I felt overwhelmed, at first, with all the things that I didn’t know how to do. We were merging his things and my things, and I didn’t know what to do with any of it. I really didn’t know how to cook, clean, or do any “homemaking" stuff. I was without a clue.

I didn’t have a cleaning routine, didn’t even know what one was, so I never did laundry until we were desperate. Unfortunately, that caused some discussions because, at the time, my husband had to wear clothes that I just couldn’t manage to keep cleaned and ready for him to wear.

My sweet hubby gently offered to take the pressure off me by taking care of his own laundry, but I said no because I felt that I should do it, only I rarely did. I yelled at him once for going to work with a wrinkled shirt, because I felt it reflected badly on me. It seems so silly now, but at the time I felt very guilty for letting him go out like that. I felt even more guilty because my house was always a mess and I just couldn’t seem to get a handle on it.

For years we lived in one big mess. Empty dishes in the living room, newspapers and clothes everywhere, sacks of groceries (with the canned goods still in them) on the kitchen counters waiting to be unpacked, grooming supplies all over the bathroom counters, more mess in the bedrooms. I was always embarrassed  when people dropped in.

I wanted to have a clean home but I didn’t know how. My idea of cleaning was to "crisis" clean: throw everything into the bedroom and close all the other doors. I was embarrassed once when a friend went into the bedroom to change her baby and saw my mess. I felt discouraged and I felt like a failure.

When I had free time, the last thing I wanted to do was clean. The huge mess just looked so overwhelming and seemed so hopeless, and I didn't have a clue where to I didn't.  

Tomorrow I will share the first thing I did that made a huge difference in the appearance of my home.   

So come back tomorrow for part two of  Conquering The Messies (a four part series).   (Update: Please go here for part two, here for part three and here for part four)

There will be no new Lazy Mom in the series this week until my back recovers a bit.  Sorry!

(Edit: this post is taken from the archives as I am on bed rest due to my bad back flaring up again.  I am in a lot of pain so am borrowing from my archives this week!  I DO have pain pills and will also be going to PT for several weeks which I hope will help!)

Now please join us for the Making Your Home Sing Monday Linky Party! 

Making your home sing Mondays

Welcome to the Making Your Home Sing Monday linky party! Every day you are doing something to make your house into a home for yourself and your family (if you have one). 

My point with each Monday post is, what are YOU doing or going to do today to make your home sing? It can be an attitude or an action. So have fun, do some blog hopping and if you want, link up!

Topics can include marriage, parenting, encouraging women, organization, cleaning, saving money, our behavior and attitudes, homemaking, homeschooling, recipes....the opportunities are endless. 

What are you doing or going to do today to make your home sing? Please go here for instructions and/or ideas and come back here to link up to join us today! Please do not put your own "Making Your Home Sing Monday" Linky on your blog. As always, please don't forget to link to this post so that others can join the fun!

If you don't want to miss any blog posts, you can follow me or subscribe in your reader or by email.  You can also find me here on facebook as well!  I'd love to connect with you!

I am linking up to these linky parties:
mop it up mondaysAll Things with Purpose
also A Bowl Full of Lemons and We Are That Family and WholeHearted Home


  1. Thanks for hosting :) I hope you're feeling better soon!!

    1. Thank you! Between the bed rest, pain pills and physical therapy I imagine I will be back on my feet soon!

  2. So sorry to hear you aren't better yet. Still praying for you all!

    1. Thank you, Mindy! I appreciate the prayers. My mom is home from the hospital again, btw. Hopefully she won't have to go right back in again and can stay out of it for awhile!

  3. I'm sorry your back has been bothering you. I have finally found some relief from 6 weeks of hip pain so I know how it throws a schedule off and causes you to fall behind. I'm glad you're running this series though and will look forward to reading the "rest of the story."

    Take care!

    1. I am glad you are finding relief. PT helped me before so I am hoping it will help again, because I can't stay in bed and exist on pain pills forever! :)

  4. Nan,
    I will be praying for a speedy recovery for you. My hubby has issues with his back, and so I have seen firsthand how painful it is.

    1. Thank you! Yes, they can be painful. Mine has flared up a couple of times after the original injury but never this bad.

  5. Oh wow! It's like reading something I could have written! I can't wait to see the next blogs of this topic. My house is a wreck! :)

    We have a tiny house and 6 people sharing it. Part of my problem is that I have nowhere to put stuff away. I try and purge but don't get far as we have kids in different ages needing different things.
    I am excited to see your ideas and advice.
    My poor husband would too... he goes to work every day in wrinkled clothes. :( I feel terrible!

    1. Don't feel bad! You're in a very busy season of life! The smaller the house, the more organization you need. Our old house was half the size of a current one so I know what you mean.

      Do you use under the bed storage. I used to put plastic boxes under there and store clothes or toys or shoes in them, lol! Here's an old post I did on organizing toys:

      Here's another on teaching kids how to clean their rooms:

    2. Thanks so much for your note on my blog and for these helpful blogs. Yes we'd one under the bed storage too but soon we'll have to figure out a new plan as the #3 in line baby will be big enough for a big sized mattress that we'll slide under there. Uffda. :) God has provided so much and this home is sturdy and dry. The furnace works and with 0 degree temps these days, that in itself is enough!
      I am a few days behind in reading your posts but hope to catch up this afternoon and possibly start some of the organizing tips as well. Thanks again!!!

    3. Those trundle beds are awesome! I love using storage in unexpected ways. When the kids were little and shared a room, I put their dresser in the closet in order to make more space in their room.

      Now the dresser is in the bedroom but a small bookshelf is in the closet of my youngest son's room.

      Wow, you are having a cold spell, my friend! Wowzers!


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