A Mess-free home with kids – No, I am not kidding!

Have you ever seen a house with a child that is clean?

You cannot believe?

Well, reasonably clean, I mean. It is always a given fact that a home with kids is bound to be messy and full of clutter -- with some of the books that are strewn everywhere and crayons conveniently thrown under the sofa and the rug.

But if I tell you to that inspite of having kids, the home can be kept in order; it sure may take some to seep in. But worry not, the following list will illustrate how a mommy can be a great mommy and even excel in the housekeeping department.  

So, are we ready to begin

1.      Accept the situation at hand and peruse your options:

The first thing is for all the mums who  love to pamper their little angels by allowing them to pull down anything that they like and little later on fret at the mess created. Dear mums, we all know that life can be challenging with an infant or a toddler. It’s an offer made at gunpoint. You have to accept the lesser of the two evils. You either leave him to cry his little heart out or you end up with a back ache after all the cleaning up you’ll do in an infinite loop.

Either way, I will advise you to keep your options open. Give in sometimes when you know that he is cranky and on most other times refuse to give in. It is important to give him a signal that he cannot pull anything out randomly.

2.      Keep the important, discard the not so important:

If you have multiple children then you may have reasons to keep the older child’s clothes, books and stationery to pass it down to other siblings. Otherwise all other things that have lived their lifetime and also that are broken or need mending need to go.

A certain parent of six children used to keep a huge cardboard box at home. Every child was instructed to drop in the things that he no longer useful to them. Every six months, the box would be full and she would personally take it to a close by orphanage and donate the contents.

As an experience, she would take along a child in order to teach him the joy of giving. This system worked so well that when her eldest daughter got married and bore a son, she continued her mother’s practice.

3.       Give them a lot of options:

Essentially a mother’s life is never free from chaos and cleanup. But with lots of patience and good training skills, children can be occasionally trained to clean up after messing up.

 A teacher in one of her blogs had once suggested that when she was a young mother of two, she used to play a game with her toddlers. The game involved recognizing the home of each and every toy that belonged to them. The teacher mum then stressed how important it is to keep things back into their home. She also added that just like how it is important to have a home, all toys love to be kept in their own homes.

4.      Be creative:

For a house with kids any amount of storage solution (dining chairs are really cool) will just not be enough. That is why a lot of bins and containers can be provided in and near their rooms to clear up once they have played. There are fancy bins of all kinds available in the market which can make play exciting and cleaning up still more exciting.                                                                                                                                                                        

Open bins and containers facilitate easy clean up as the kid just has to pick up the toy and toss them in. The parent can make up the clean up more exciting by timing the performance Vis a Vis between the siblings. The child that finishes cleaning up his toys first can get an incentive for doing it fast. For older children who can read, the bins can be labeled and things of a particular genre have to be piled up in the same big.

5.      First in first out:

When there are social occasions and birthdays where the children are expected to get a few presents, the parent must beforehand start taking stock of the redundancies in their stuff. For older children, it could be made voluntary to opt to give up a toy that they no longer find useful or have played enough. Younger children’s wardrobe may be done by one of the parents.

6.      Less is definitely more:

When they are infants, we need to buy a lot for them to keep them creatively occupied. But as kids grow older, it is important to make them understand that one bigger thing of better quality is always worth spending on than on ten worthless baubles. That way the house looks de cluttered and there is value for money. Any toy with quality that is compromised will sooner than later end up in the bin or the child will lose interest in it.

7.      Keep them creatively satisfied:

When they are very young there is no pressing need to give them access to all the things that belong to them. One more successful strategy is to hide some interesting toys away from their view. When the child loses interest in his other toys which will become evident from the way he is handling the toy, give him the new toy. He will play with it with renewed interest and zeal.

8.      Let them make the mess:

This may sound antithetical but as children they psychologically need to make all that mess. It is a part of learning that they do and that will come in handy later in life. While their childhood will not last long enough to witness many more great messes and the surrounding fuss by you, I suggest that it’s a good idea for you to relax and enjoy the period as long as it lasts. For very soon, those tiny little hands and feet will grow big and strong and no longer will they make any mess. But you may sincerely want the good old days to come back, for memories sake. So, why not enjoy till it lasts?!