Category Archives: cleaning

Eye Contact.

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Eye Contact.

I think we are all aware of how important eye contact truly is.

In some cultures it is considered rude to not make direct eye contact.

It would seem untrustworthy in a job interview to not be able to make eye contact with your prospective employer/employee…

If I were on a date, I might find it odd and unnerving if my date couldn’t make eye contact…or even trying to talk with a loved one or friend about some topic I was concerned about…it could lead me to think they thought otherwise of what I was saying, or knew more about the topic than they let on.

Regardless of the circumstance, eye contact is important.

And it seems to bug me a lot lately.

It’s not my husband…he is a pro at eye contact…at holding one’s attention when speaking…albeit a little long-winded, but able to hold his audience’s attention.

Especially with my kids.

Not my older kids…I know when they don’t make eye contact with me, it’s because they are up to no good…and can call them out on it before they can blink.

I have such guilt about my lack of eye contact…with my little ones.

It’s me.

I know I spend 99% of my days with them. I wake them, feed them, help dress them, entertain them read to them…but rarely look them in the eye.

Just typing that hurts.

I am consumed with NOT making eye contact with them…with doing the necessities so I can go back to what I want to do- whether its daily chores, work, painting, reading an article, grocery shopping or just zoning out on social media (the worst of it all)…I feel as though if I make direct eye contact with these precious little faces, they will suck me in…I will never get anything done. I will have to play Barbie’s or a board game or matchbox cars, or color…God forbid I stoop to their level and interact with them in their world…yet I expect them to behave at all times in my adult world of rules, chores, grocery shopping, work and Twitter updates.

I am ashamed. But I am guilty of this.

I will occasionally succumb to the world of all things imaginary, but after doing it with the older kids, and faced with doing it for another five to ten years, I feel deflated…defeated. Like…”when the hell is it gonna be about me?” kind of feeling. Or I get that charming reminder from family or friends that we CHOSE to have more babies later in life…

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Marley attempting to hold her almost 11 pound baby brother, Chance, five years ago.

Yes, we did ( what can I say…we like each other…a lot!).

And I will own that choice. But I am no good to my babies, old or young, if I am defeated and deflated.

I guess I can’t look them in the eye because of this…my guilty feeling that I feel like I deserve more time to myself because I already did this for twenty past twenty years…I am tired, beaten down and older…

But I promise those sweet little faces in my picture above, that they will have more of my attention. I selfishly want time to belong to me, but their time as little ones is so short…

I will promise them to look them in the eye each day, and tell them I adore them, and ask them what they want to do with me…that may open a can of worms, but it is the job I signed on for, and the guilt is too much to bare some days…so…

I promise I will be a better mother, mommy… a better me. I will look all of my loved ones in the eye and remember why we became a family in the first place.

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Clean House.

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Clean House.

I DO appreciate a clean house.

My house is rarely ever spic and span clean, but occasionally it is for about an hour.  Today is my cleaning day…not a beach day or errand day…but a much needed cleaning day.

Yes we load/unload the dishwasher daily. And fold mountains of clothes daily…even scrub the bathroom multiple times per week with seven people in one tiny house…but clean clean weekly?

Nope.

Haven’t done this kind of cleaning in months.

Dust has moved in almost permanently as well as cat hair on literally every piece of furniture and somehow lampshade.

Organizing? Forget it…

Almost every drawer and closet is filled to capacity with misplaced items shoved in wherever they will fit.

Clean houses don’t seem to go hand in hand with busy lives…we shove things away to make the small living spaces look tidy, as we run out the door for the tenth time in a day. I may even occasionally use a dirty dish towel to dust off a few table surfaces as I walk the towels up to the laundry basket. If I am lucky, I will hit all three tables I pass by on my way up the stairs, if not too distracted with the twenty pairs of shoes/books/papers/bags piled on each step on my way up the stairs.

In my distraction up to the laundry, I may even notice the clumps of ever-growing cat hairs on the stairs, and blow them down with my breath to the landing (so then they are more consolidated) or use my now very dusty dish towel to shoo them down below.

Entering the hall bathroom where all the laundry hides in the closet, I come across wet towels and clothing strewn across the floor, then see the closet oozing with more wet towels and clothes as if it vomited dirty clothes all over the floor.

I remind myself daily that all these chores can be done quickly if all seven of us pitched in one day a week (along with the bickering of who-did-what-and-when and that they collected the trash already this week or did the dishes)instead of me giving up a whole day on the weekend…then I remind myself of these weekends…

My clean house weekends…just me, and some of my music, cleaning and schlepping up and down the stairs for hours…it sounds like torture, but for some reason, in my weird motherly way…its almost like a much needed Mommy Timeout.

I crave these days...for dusting to be an actual completed task, not just one or two tables at a time…the laundry done and put away…at least for one day.

To sit back when I am all finished, with a cocktail in hand (trust me…by the time I am done, it will be five o’clock here too) and actually seeing order in a very lived-in chaotic world.

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But in all honesty, I am starting to appreciate the messy days here as well, as two of the kids leave for college very soon…they will take some these messes with them, but also some of my heart.

My house will be a little less messy but also a lot more quiet.

I am excited for the future and watching our children grow into individuals, but I am already beginning to miss what I have today…

A very dusty/ messy/ loud home…

But also full of life and love.

Tired.

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Tired.

I am whooped.

All the time.

I am pretty sure the only time I ever sit is to go to the bathroom or write a blog.

From 5:30-ish (depending on how many times I can hit snooze without causing a panic attack) in the morning, until I lay down with my little ones at 8:30 at night…I do not stop moving. I keep expecting to pass by a mirror and see a Cindy Crawford type body…

But it is still me…

Frazzled, droopy-eyed, flabby me.

That’s okay…I have slightly accepted middle age…minus my thinning hair, constant confusion, stress, and of course…exhaustion.

I do not ever remember being so tired before kids. I know I do not sleep well, but never have since I was little.

Even when I worked seven days a week at two jobs and then went out late to the bars with friends, I was not this tired.

I know I hear many people swear that a nice glass of wine or cocktail can help with a good night’s sleep…not working on this lady! Even two or three sometimes have zero effect on this mommy.

I pump myself full of vitamins and supplements daily, eat better than ever…

Except for my terrible addiction to pork roll.

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Maybe I should just accept that the ten minute cat nap occasionally as I get my toddler to nap, or the twenty minutes of dozing off as I try to read a book to the little ones at bedtime, is all I really need at this point in my life.

I read once that Martha Stewart only sleeps like four hours a night…I could handle that. 

I could get ALL the laundry done AND folded, make lunches, dust, answer emails, write a blog more than once a week, prep meals…just no vacuuming…that wouldn’t be fair to a house full of peacefully sleeping kids and hubby.

Maybe even slowly build an empire based on early morning crafts/baking/organizing…

Or maybe not.

I don’t want to be up at four in the morning anymore than any other mom reading this…

I would love peace and quiet occasionally, and less clutter, AND sleep…

But I will settle for maybe five or six hours tonight since I just got the laundry all done AND put away, vacuumed (half the house), and cleaned up dinner ALL before bedtime…

I deserve that extra half hour of slumber tonight.

And hitting snooze a few times.