Written by Jamie Martin, editor of Simple Homeschool and Steady Mom
This is awkward. (Kidding–kind of.)
You see, one day over nine months ago I had no idea what to write about for an upcoming post. Brilliant thoughts seemed scarce to come by, and I eventually decided to share how I cleaned my house once a month.
In fact, I still occasionally receive emails from readers letting me know that once a month cleaning (OAMC) changed their lives. So you can imagine how I started to feel when I realized that this method, which had once been a perfect fit, was no longer working out in our home.
What had changed?
1. Paper and Good Ideas
One morning I awoke to find my seven-year-old consumed with cutting paper–hundreds of pieces that can be found on the floor of his room at any time. The idea of cleaning these up only once a month was, of course, ridiculous.
Since I try to keep in mind that my job is to say yes, I didn’t want to continually put a damper on my kids’ good ideas just because they might be messy ones.
2. Working Mamas
In theory it sounded simple to take one day off each month from all other work to clean. At first, it was simple.
But I found that with both writing and cleaning, I enjoy working in short bursts. And with new books to write and blog posts constantly on the go, it became challenging to arrange nothing else for one day.
Last October we unexpectedly moved to the country. This represented a dream come true in many ways, but it also meant that all of our routines were up in the air for a while.
We waited to discover our “new normal” and to figure out how to best make life work in our new space.
4. Older Children
This was probably the biggest factor in my decision to change our cleaning method. My children have had regular chores for years now, but I still did the majority of deep cleaning myself.
But at the ages of 8, 7, and 6, the time began to feel right to train them in more thorough cleaning. So I started to consider the best way to involve them. Next week I’ll talk about what cleaning method we’re currently using.
I long ago gave up on formulas and labels, having learned that life happens in seasons. Our job as parents, when it comes to both cleaning and homeschooling, is to hold on to what feels right one month, while being willing to let go of it the next.
We need to enjoy the freedom of doing what works when it works, and then discarding it when it stops. In this way we allow life to flow gently from one season into the next.
What cleaning method are you currently using? Have you ever found a need to switch strategies?