Tag Archives: Housekeeping

Type A Confessions

I’ve kind of been on a mission to de-clutter my home, one tiny area at a time. I’ve written about involving the kids recently, but it’s been going on for much longer than that. And now that we are buying a house, it’s time to kick it up a notch.

As a woman with a type-A personality, my problem is not so much with figuring out where to start as it is with learning where and when to END. Because once I get started, I get so thrilled with the progress I’m making and I fear that if I stop when the timer goes off, that I’ll never get the motivation or time to start again. Have I mentioned I’m home all summer with two young children and a dog? The dog is the least of my worries, actually. She doesn’t interrupt me every 3 minutes to ask a question. Or tell me something, or show me something she made. Yes, I love my kids, and I know one day I’ll look back fondly at these pestering moments. I’m just saying they infringe on my inner need to GET THINGS DONE.

So I’m looking for balance. For a realistic plan to accomplish my de-cluttering goals. How can I be sure I’m doing the best I can, with what I’ve got, to get this place ready to pack up and move? I’ve started by listing the areas that need attention, and I think I’m just going to make it a daily ritual. Each day I’ll just work on the area I feel most like doing that day. Which totally goes against my planner mentality, but attempting to plan it all down to the last detail just seems too overwhelming. And unrealistic, as I need to be flexible enough to work around whatever is going on that day here at the house. Will the kids be at Grandpa’s today, playing outside, or playing video games? What kind of moods will they be in? Are they cranky & defiant or are they cooperative and willing to play together without screaming bloody murder every 30 seconds? Because some days they require closer supervision, and that affects the type of work I can get done that day.

I’m guessing if you are still reading, either you share in this type-A personality or you have run out of good reading material. Either way, I thank you 🙂 I think I’m done with this subject for now. Oh, wait, no. I just had an idea; let me know what you think of this… what if every day I blogged (briefly, I promise) about what I have de-cluttered that day. Some days I could even make it interesting. It would be a sort of accountability to keep motivated, and if I come across some interesting junk, it might be fun to write about it before I ditch it. In a way it may be easier to let go of certain things, because if some things had a story, I could post a picture, write the story, and be able to preserve the memory. Because you know that’s why we hoarders like to keep things – it’s the memory attached to the thing – and it’s often super hard to let go. Yes, that’s what I will do. This will be my pre-moving project, to rid our lives of unnecessary clutter, and to share it here on the blog. Who’s with me?!?

Bilaterally bionic and neurotic

Yesterday was an exciting day. Yesterday I had my 2nd CI (left ear) activated! I admit the event lacked the luster the 1st one did, but that’s to be expected. The first one took me from deaf to hearing, this second one will take me from “okay” hearing to “better” hearing. I am still forever grateful, but I think the highs of being bilateral will come in bits and pieces as time goes on, as I recognize the little things I may have forgotten I was missing. On the way home from the activation, I noticed I could hear the blinker on the truck, something I hadn’t heard in quite a while, because it’s on my left. See? It’s the little things.

I went to bed around 9:00 last night. I don’t normally go to bed that early, but I was feeling pretty crappy. I had been coughing most of the day, so I had stayed away from caffeine. Good for the cough, but resulted in a major headache. That coupled with some stomach issues and the excitement of the day left me quite a mess. However, the sleep must have served me well, because I was pretty wide awake at 6 this morning, and feeling much better. Even wide awake, my body doesn’t move so well, but I was up by 6:30. I put both my ears on (!!) and moseyed on out to the living room. Luke (my early riser) was on the couch, watching tv. We chatted for a bit, then I came into the kitchen to make breakfast. And of course, instead I am writing.

It’s day 3 of summer break for me and the kids. This means less work for the kids, but more work for me. No more lazy days, no more morning naps, and no more spotless floors. I like keeping the house clean, but I realize that’s going to become more difficult with the kids home. One of my hopes as a parent is to teach my children how to clean up after themselves, but that’s not a quick process, right? I think repetition and years of patience are the keys here. Those and being a good example, of course. But this summer, I don’t really have the energy for keeping up with my own high expectations. And this is how I plan to deal with that ugly fact: I’m just going to pretend like we’re camping! Every time I step on a wad of dirt or pile of crumbs and that frustration rises within my belly, I’ll just pretend like it’s totally normal to have dirty feet. Dirt in the entryway? Crumbs in front of the couch? It’s okay! We’re camping!! I just won’t tell the kids, because then they’ll want to pitch a tent in the living room, and that would just be going too far.

Have I become that neurotic? Sadly, I’m afraid I have.

Field trips, coffee, surgery…

Well, I never did blog about those cookies, did I? Maybe next time. I have a lot on my mind this week.

I accompanied my son and his class on a field trip to an indoor aquarium. We rode a charter bus, and Luke discovered that the on-board restroom is not as glamorous as it sounds. The aquarium was located in a large shopping mall, and since our bus let us off at the wrong entrance, we were able to scurry past all the wonderful-looking shops on our way. Luke seemed to enjoy the aquarium. There were a lot of neat things to see – jellyfish, stingrays, turtles, etc – and Luke enjoyed it all, but he made a point to tell me that his favorite part of the day was spending it with me. My favorite was hanging out with him too, and that just melts my heart to hear it from him. Oh, but my second favorite part was finding a Tim Horton’s right there inside the mall! I had not had time to make coffee that morning, so that was the icing on the cake for me 🙂

That was Monday, and I can’t remember what’s happened since. Mostly soccer games, doing laundry, walking to the bus stop, and a little eating and sleeping in between. I’ve been feeling like I have to stay “caught up” because I’m going to be out of commission for a bit. Why, you ask? Because tomorrow I am having surgery to get my 2nd cochlear implant installed, that’s why! And this time I’m pretty sure it’s for real. The UTI that prevented me from having surgery last month is gone, and I had the lab test done last week to be sure. So today is a day of making sure the floors are clean and the laundry is caught up and then I’ll be packing for tomorrow.

Wish me luck, pray for me, send soft cookies, whatever! I’ll be back in due time.

Movie night for the win

I had a crazy busy day, and now the house is a disaster. Well, a disaster in the same way last week’s thunderstorm was a hurricane. There are still traces from last night’s dinner in the kitchen, floors have attracted various debris from the weather outside, and laundry is, well, always in progress. But I was home alone with the kids tonight, and I didn’t want to spend it cleaning. I wanted to spend it with them. So I did. We snacked and talked and then we snuggled up on the couch and watched Toy Story 2, right up to the very end. I can’t remember the last time we’ve all watched a movie from start to finish with no interruptions, and with no electronics stealing our attention. It was beautiful.

And now they are in bed, well past each of their bedtimes, and I sit. Writing and reading. Not cleaning the house out of some neurotic obsession. I think that’s a good sign, right? That I’m not TOO obsessive? That I can draw a line somewhere, and be realistic about what matters and what doesn’t? After all, (paraphrased from the best movie quote of the night) “I can’t stop [them] from growing up, but I wouldn’t miss it for the world.”

Productive days and support groups

Occasionally I have days where I feel like I totally kicked ass. Yesterday was one of those. At 10:51 *AM* I was Skyping my mom to brag about all the stuff I had already accomplished: read my daily Scripture, wrote the meal plan and grocery list for the week, cleaned toilets, bathroom sinks and mirrors, walked for ten minutes on the treadmill, updated my Cozi calendar with the kids’ school calendar, and I showered.

So when my husband dropped my daughter off after noon (half days all week, to ease the kindergartners into school, I suppose), I was ready. Of course, we only had an hour or so to relax because the rest of the day was a blur. I had a follow up appointment with my neuro-ophthalmologist in the afternoon, then we picked up our son from Grandpa’s house, then came home to quickly eat dinner, then Mike and the kids dropped me off at my HLAA (Hearing Loss Association of America) meeting while they went grocery shopping.

Neuro-op visit went well. They tested my eyes again, and found that my right eye is a little worse, but my left eye is a little better. I guess that means I’m even. They used the word “stable” which is much better than “going blind”, so I’ll take it. I don’t know why going blind scares me so much. I know people who are blind, some from birth, and they are otherwise healthy and happy. It certainly wouldn’t be the end of the world. It would only be the end of my world, if I let it be. But we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it. IF we get to it. At this point I guess it doesn’t look like I’m headed there anytime soon. Thank you, Jesus 🙂

The HLAA meeting was wonderful. It’s the start of a new fiscal year for them (the local chapter, at least), so they kicked it off with an “open mic” night. I was excited to go, because I went to the last meeting in June, and to a dinner with the group in July, and already I feel like we are family. Last night was our opportunity to share our hearing loss stories with each other. It was refreshing to hear about other’s journeys, and was nice to be able to share mine as well. It’s amazing how different we all are, in general and in how we came to be deaf or hard of hearing, and yet we have a common understanding and can easily relate to one another. The group ranges in age and background. Some are lipreaders, some know ASL, some have hearing aids, and some have cochlear implants (some even have both!). Some have been deaf since birth, yet some, like me, have only been deaf a short time. Yet when I say being deaf sometimes makes me feel isolated, they all nod their heads in agreement. Because they have been there too.

All in all, it was a good day. Today I was reminded of where I have been, what I have come through, and the amazing gifts I have been given. Hallelujah.

Slacker

I’ve been kind of a slacker about writing, both here and in my private journal. It’s because of this darn trilogy. I just can’t seem to put it down! However, I think I’m keeping the necessities taken care of, showering, feeding the kids, morning devotions, etc.

The challenge I’ve recently taken on is that of NOT internalizing the “chaos” around me. It’s nearly impossible to keep a house neat and tidy while young children are present, so I need to be okay with that, and just relax already. It’s not like our house is up for sale, so who are we trying to impress? No one. We are healthy, happy, and we are together. That’s what matters and that’s how I can let it go.

With that said, there is one aspect of this new role at home I take very seriously. FOOD. I love food. Food is delicious, and food is fuel. I believe that you can enjoy eating healthy foods, and I strive to teach that to my kids as well. I want them to grow up with healthy eating habits. It will save them in the long run on medical expenses and counseling fees. So, each week I decide on a set of meals, and then make a grocery list. In the past I’ve had a friend take me to the store to help me with the shopping. That’s been nice, but that may prove more difficult having the kids with me during the summer. Mondays will be my kid-free day, so maybe I can find a friend who could take me on Mondays. That would be a great way to start the week, wouldn’t it?

What do you think? Do you struggle with feeling chaos at home? Do you have a book you can’t put down? Do you like to go grocery shopping? Are you seizing the day today?!