Turning into a mommy just happened over night. One day we were two and the next day we were three.
But. I have always been a little rigid, controlling, obsessed with tidiness and cleanliness. I’m a Monica. I obsess over the little things like a crumb on the counter top or some dog hair near the baseboard. I can’t help it, but I’m learning to tone it down a bit.
What girl doesn’t want her house to look impeccable and always be ready for the guest that just pops in unexpectedly? I think one of the main rules your own mother teaches you is to not let the cleaning pile up. Keep up with it, so if someone calls and says , “I’ll be there in 5 minutes,” you can just pick up a few things and throw on a smile.
On any given day, you can bet that my living room looks like this. (Pay no attention to the guard dog on top of the sofa.) We sort of set the room up and use the furniture to barricade him in the area where we want him to stay.
And my kitchen looks like this. Drying rack, bottle pieces, formula, cereal, and water are always on my counters.
It’s okay. I can’t be too worried about having it all there, all the time. I pick it up during nap time and pick it up again every night. We have some cute toy baskets for the smaller toys. But just knowing that everything is generally messy kind of makes me go crazy thinking about it. I came up with a few solutions to help me through the baby clutter.
1. Buy cute storage bins. We have these canvas buckets from Pottery Barn Kids for all of the small toys. The bins look cute in the room and aren’t too imposing on the rest of the decor.
2. Don’t let the baby messes pile up. Deal with small things throughout the day and pick up the toys every night.
3. Have some rooms in the house that are baby-free. Our guest bedroom and our study are not baby-friendly zones, so we don’t put toys in there. I’d love it if our master bedroom was baby-free, but that’s where I have to get ready every day and it’s just not realistic to keep all of his things out. We use our Pack ‘n Play as a playpen in our bedroom and keep a few of his toys in there. It keeps him entertained long enough for me to get dressed.
4. Don’t buy too many toys. It’s so easy to go into the store and come out with a new toy every time because you know he’ll love it. But we just don’t have the space for it in our little bungalow. We don’t have a play room and anything we bring him just makes our house a little bit smaller. Hudson likes playing with pots and pans (the cheap ones, not the All Clad), so excessive toy is unnecessary.
5. Get over it. People know I have a baby and they’ll be forgiving, not judgmental.
Relaxed is a stretch. I can be relaxed. But I still strive to keep a clean house. I just wait until my son has turned in for the evening to attempt to make the sophisticated adult home a reality again.