Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Follow-up to "Looking for Advice"

I just wanted to say a big "Thanks!" (notice a theme in tonight's posts?) to my blogosphere friends for the fabulous advice in response to my Looking for Advice post. I'd love to say that I immediately implemented every recommendation and am now the supreme master of mama-dom, but sadly, the reality is less exciting. Truthfully, though, I have managed to make a few changes around here that (knock on wood) seem to be making a huge difference. (Stacy and Lucy, please do not bring your sucky blog-effect over here!). So far, we have:
  1. Cleaned out D's toy basket. Seriously, the volume of toys (particularly plastic, noise-making toys) was overkill for someone his age. We sent some to Goodwill and some to closet storage. What's remaining now fits in the basket, and the basket has been moved to the top of the desk. Not exactly the look I was going for in my home, but better than the alternative, which is D freaking out and not focusing on any of the toys. He plays with one or two items at a time. When he gets tired of them, we pick them up and exchange them for other toys in the basket. Now, at any given time, there are only two toys "out" that have to be picked up.

  2. A white board in place of my beloved Bridget Jones' Diary poster (yes, I love that movie). Again, not exactly the look I was going for (than again, BJD didn't really fit, either), but this addition has been AWESOME. We plan out the entire week's meals and check off each one as we go. The right side has the shopping list for the week. If we need to make a change (which has happened), we can just rearrange nights to accomodate our needs. Fab-u-lous.

  3. The above-mentioned planning and subsequent grocery shopping occur on Saturday afternoon. The set time helps us make sure we actually get it done, and leaves us a day to make an emergency run just in case anything was forgotten.
  4. A new bedtime routine. Used to be that we were running around like chickens, Chris and I both trying to do everything at once. It was futile, and in the end, nothing got done. Now, D goes to bed at 7:30 (no exceptions!). We eat around 6:30 and start the bedtime wind-down at 7:00. We take turns: one person gives D a bath, massage, bedtime story, and bottle, while the other person cleans up the kitchen after dinner.
  5. We sit down together during Sunday naptime to go over bills, important paperworks or events from that week, and complete the filing to make sure everything was taken care of. Again, the set time helps make sure we get it done.
These seem like pretty obvious changes, but I think the real challenge isn't figuring out what to do, it's actually sticking to it. Most of these changes were implemented about two weeks ago. Hopefully in a month I'll be able to say we're still sticking to it!

Things that still need to be worked on:
  1. Finding time for the laundry
  2. Finding time for the actual cleaning (dusting, vacuuming, etc.)
  3. Our bedroom (aka omg what happened in here?!)

Whew. If you made it this far, thanks for listening! I tend to think these types of posts are a bit...ridiculous. I mean, who wants to read about how I do my grocery shopping? :) Still, if anyone was interested in my process for obtaining dry goods...there you have it. And I hope my willingness to subject myself to intense humiliation by actually posting pictures of our bedroom (without my husband's knowledge) shows my very real love for you, my bloggy friends. Please feel free to have a good laugh at our expense, or use the photos as evidence that yours isn't really that bad.

And if anyone wants to post pics of their worst room, by all means, please do so. I love a good competition. :)


Heather & Adam said...

I am so proud of you! Sounds like things are going much smoother.
We just did the same thing with Charlie's toys. Much better! I like the chart idea, though.
Wanna send me that poster? Heehee.

Lyn-Dee said...

My parents love to talk to LT over the computer using video. The other night my dad made a silly comment that pretty much asked if we were ever going to clean the house. HUH..My comment was..if you ever want to see your grandson again...I wouldn't comment on the house. It is hard parenting a toddler...especially when we have only been home 3 weeks. I think you are doing great. I love reading your blog!

Mark and Sarah said...

I read your post with intense interest...for some reason I love to read about people's ways of getting things done :) You sound super organized now, I am jealous. Seriously. Oh, and I think I can compete with you for worst room of the week. Check out my post later this week :)

Cindy said...

Hey....we have those sheets!! They are awesome!!!
Loved the post. Glad things are moving along smoothly.
Getting rid of 90% of the kids toys has been the best thing...although the two little ones can still make one hell of a mess with the 10% that is left...ugh :)
They are lucky they are cute!!!

Life in the Bend said...

Is that a picture of our bedroom? The two look awfully similar (mess and all).

Jess said...

I love the new look!

I'm glad to hear that you've settled into a good routine! Our house revolves around routines!

cathy said...

Fab-U-loso! We do the toys and white board too and pretty soon you'll wonder how you ever lived without it. Laundry and other cleaning happens when you feel inspired (or run out of underwear) but I cannot function without my meal planning! Way to go...

Kate said...

Good luck keeping it up! New systems are our downfall -- they seem to work great for a little while, until S has an emergency room visit, or a tooth coming in, or...
I enjoy reading about D, especially since you're about three months ahead of us, so I know what to plan for. My favorite was the video of him biting the table!