Thursday, January 22, 2015

Myth: Kids at school= Clean House?

After 14 years of parenting, ALL my children will finally be off to school next week. All of them!
 I might cry, I might click my heels together in joy skipping out the school gate.....
While I gather my thoughts, here's some past back to school posts...

Back in 2008 I wrote this:

So this post is for all you mums at home with small children - I will be squashing your dreams that once they are at school you will have a clean house - it is a Complete Fallacy!

Okay so all those times at home with 3 young children - dreaming of the far off day when they will be out of your house and off to school. Dreams of sparkling counter tops in the kitchen, pristine floors, made beds, dinner on time, clean clothes, morning teas with friends, baking dainty treats, trips to the movies - ALONE, catching up on TV, participating in crafts, doing SOMETHING/ANYTHING for yourself!

Then the day finally happens. The new school year rolls around, you drop them off at their room, pretending to be sad, but clicking your heels as you bound out the school gate - HOORAY! The first week I barely accomplish anything - Actually with all this running around and coaxing little ones to get dressed, pack your bag, put your shoes on, chasing them around the house to get them to sit still long enough to do their hair (lucky if you have sons!) leaves the house more dishevelled than ever.

I go through the weeks telling myself, it is a new thing for us, we are just getting used to our schedule - once we get used to it, there will be plenty of time for ME and stuff that I want to do - but for now- there are breakfast to be had, lunch to make, there are 6 people in this house, so of course the kitchen will be in a HUGE mess after all this.

We are also on a no TV before school rule now. They actually didn't protest as much as I thought they would. It was a good idea - for their young little brains - (though I am sure the 7 hours perday of tv they were watching before 5 years old has taken most of it ) but now we have another problem - Children that rise at 6am and PLAY for two hours!! They have done painting, doll houses, animals, cutting, pasting, and today - playdough!! Generally they leave a bit of a mess even if I ordered them to clean it, I still have to clean the cleanup.

Then I return home from our one hour walk (there and back for me) to that mentioned above. I clean the kitchen, loungeroom, bedrooms, varandah, backyard from the mornings "activities". Once the kitchen is presentable I mess it up by cooking dinner. Gabrielle has a sleep where I collapse in a heap and watch some Dr Phil or Oprah (usually while folding, washing, cooking, general cleaning) and then it is time for the walk back to school.

B.S (Before School) we visited friends and family - we had no need to rush back or leave at 1:30- in time to get back for school. We walked to Southbank and went swimming at 8am - we didn't have to be anywhere by 9am. Sleepover at Grandmas on weekdays, holidays whenever we pleased. Life was quite simple back then.

Now we are run by the calendar - it actually means something now. Volunteering at school, things to make/bake/take/fake. Gabrielle will grow up in a different atmosphere - no tv, constant trips to school, a timetable, without her sisters for 6 hours a day, and with her mummy seemingly consumed with cleaning - I don't recall having this much to do before!

School = Clean House and more leisure time - Myth BUSTED!

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