Oddly enough, it all started with my almost 7 year old son. He's very tidy and has taken to heart the lesson that the Spirit cannot dwell in a pigsty. Once he came out and commented on how nice and peaceful it was in there and that he could feel the Holy Ghost with him. I looked at the disaster of a living room and frowned. It sucks to be shown up by a kid and I certainly wasn't feeling anything holy. He makes his bed almost every day and cleans up his toys when he's done and puts them away (usually). This child, and this child's bedroom, inspired my husband and I. We noticed a couple of things:
- if his bed was made, the rest kind of took care of itself.
- it was much easier for him to make his bed if it wasn't next to a wall. So we rearranged his room to make it easier for him to keep clean.
- he preferred to store the Lego's under his bed (in a tub) instead of in his closet because then he would be more likely to put them away.
- find the anchor in the room that makes you automatically keep everything else clean (dishes, clear counters, polished sink)
- Can you rearrange to make more or easier to use/clean space?
- Put similar items together in a place that makes sense.
Before: Fridge on the left, across from dishwasher. IKEA cabinet (where I like to do food prep.) on the right across from stove, near door. It worked, but it flowed weird.
Before: This is a shot after we painted. It looks open and we thought it was, until....
After: we moved he IKEA cabinet where the fridge was and having that open space makes the whole kitchen feel bigger! Maybe arms head space makes a bigger difference than foot space. Food prep is now near the sink and the stove.
After: A view from behind the cabinet. Now when we come in from the backyard we don't feel cut off and there's space for shoes. MUCH better flow. (yes, I know I need curtains. I can't decide between crisp white or colorful curtains. What do you think?)
After: Now the fridge is over here where we had the pantry/bookcase thingy which was simply moved over. Still plenty of room to move around. I also know my fridge is a mess. THAT part is scheduled for later this week.
Unloading the dishes is my son's job, but since all our dishes were in upper cabinets he couldn't put them away. He'd simply unload to the counter and put away utensils. So we move the dishes into a shelf in the IKEA cabinet so he can reach them and stay in one spot and pivot to put them away. He can also set the table without us getting the dishes down for him. It simply makes more sense (even though I've always put dishes in upper cabinets).
Speaking of jobs, I'll show you my cleaning charts in my next post. Still working on assigning tasks, but I'm getting close. The biggest key to trying to organize a routine and home is to view the first few months as rough drafts. Try it, change it, hone it, adapt it. It's a process. I say this more for myself than for you readers, you know, for the tough times. :)