A Neat and Clean House vs Children

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-17-2007
A Neat and Clean House vs Children
2597
Tue, 07-27-2010 - 8:35am

For those of you who like a neat and clean house, how do you keep it that way with children?

I find that if I am tied to goal of having a neat and clean house, I become a raging shrew against my children as they proceed to undo all the neatness I have worked so hard to attain. If I made a "neat and clean house" my goal, my children would not have their messy projects that take days/weeks to complete. My children would not pick up a book (casually left out)as they walk through the family room and browse through- discovering once again the mother actually knows about a few good books. I would let them watch more tv/computer time, as they don't make things as messy when they do. I would squash their ideas if I thought it would make too much of a mess. I wouldn't let them cook/experiment in the kitchen- as it is usually more work for me to clean up after they have "cleaned up". So, how do you inspire creativity and imagination in a neat and clean house? Are you on top of them to put things away as soon as they are done even if it is temporary? Where do you put the legos?....... Have you ever allowed them to take over the living room with all of their toys arranged in a city complex (thomas the train things were the Metro, legos and blocks were the buildings....)? How long would it stay up? Would let it be up for the summer so they could add to and change tings around as they got new ideas? Or allowed them to take over half of the family room for a month+ while they build and live in a beaver lodge (using all the empty shoe and other boxes and some that weren't empty)? Even if you have to walk around it everyday to get to the kitchen? Or do you require that all toys be put away everyday?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 12-07-2003
Tue, 07-27-2010 - 8:50am
Our house is not particularly neat and clean, but we do generally put all of the toys away at the end of the day. With the crazy big dog we have and all of the accompanying black fur all over the house, it's too hard to vacuum if the toys aren't put away. If the kids wanted to do a big multi-day project, we'd figure out some place to put it so it didn't get in the way too much.
Avatar for mommy2amani
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Tue, 07-27-2010 - 9:17am

I like a neat and clean house, but I admit if I were a SAHM with kids home all day, it would be more difficult to keep it that way.

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-09-2010
Tue, 07-27-2010 - 9:27am

It is my daily experience that you can LIVE in your house, it be the most wonderful place to be, fun place to be, comfortable place to be and still maintain a very clean & really organized

Polkadotandflipflops

 

 

Avatar for mommy2amani
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Tue, 07-27-2010 - 9:38am

What do your kids play with and what are their hobbies?

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-09-2010
Tue, 07-27-2010 - 9:46am
They may be in one of the den's floor coloring. At the kitchen table with their playdoh when I walk by. They were in the floor of my bedroom yesterday with a couple of toys each playing while watching their cartoons. They may be in the office at one of the three desks, on a computer, or writing, drawing. They may be in their rooms listening to music, watching tv, playing with legos, playing the guitar or keyboard or on the computer. They may be in the backyard with the dog swinging, sliding, blowing bubbles. Riding bikes. Basketball. Golf. They may have the soccer ball out. They may be in a den reading a book or on their bed reading a book. They may have their craft supplies out making a card or a picture. Playing one of their video game systems. # of things. The list is long of possibilities endlessly every day of the week.

Polkadots&FlipFlops

Polkadotandflipflops

 

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-12-2005
Tue, 07-27-2010 - 9:56am

I love you.

You just turned my mood around because the Thomas the train tracks all over the downstairs, and the dining room chairs lined up to be a big train, and the patio chair cushions stacked in middle of the living room---all of which I failed to pick up last night as part of my bargain with the kids to get them to go to bed---suddenly seem like a healthy expression of imagination and creativity instead of a neon sign of my poor housekeeping. I am now noticing just how impressive that train track set-up is for being built by a 4-year-old instead of noticing the dog hair that gathered in the ridges.

Thanks.

Avatar for mommy2amani
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Tue, 07-27-2010 - 10:07am

So, they really just go about their business all day.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-05-2000
Tue, 07-27-2010 - 10:54am

While I would like a neat and clean house, I'll never get one unless I become Samantha or Jeanne because I want one done my way and up to my expectations without doing all the work. So I settle for what results I get from dh and the kids doing things their way on their schedule. In other words, I compromised. The public areas of the house are generally picked up (neat and clean about once a week, definitely not daily) but bedrooms belong to the occupants. I still nag about it but nothing will change because I absolutely hate to vacuum, dust, clean bathrooms, wash dishes and clean the kitchen. The only way I'll get the results I want without the work needed, is to be rich enough to hire it done. And then hide myself in the sewing room or leave the house so I wouldn't have to watch them do it.

Chris

The truth may be out there but lies are in your head. Terry Pratchett

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-09-2010
Tue, 07-27-2010 - 11:22am

We teach independence. We teach they have to learn responsibility. We teach them to entertain themself, play together, play alone. Some of my fondest memories was playing for hours with my barbies uninterrupted, playing house or whatever.


All of our kids

Polkadotandflipflops

 

 

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-13-2009
Tue, 07-27-2010 - 11:25am

Right now, my house is cluttered (not unclean), I have a summer cold and I've been very ill, but I'm beginning to turn the corner. There are dishes in the sink, the floor needs to vacuumed and swept, and laundry needs to be put away.

But, we're going sailing on this beautiful day, and the clutter will still be here when we get home.

(I will wipe the counters and load the dish washer before we go.)

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