I have dreams and visions of getting my house beautifully organized and decorated. But sometimes, there are more important things to do. My son has been a little under the weather, and I’m playing catch-up on lots of things this week. I think every mother has a mental triage for tasks that need to get done. In the heat of the day, mamas are constantly juggling priorities. Here is how I generally triage my day:
- Children’s safety – above all, is my child safe? If a child climbs up on something or puts something in their mouth, there is NOTHING more important than a prevention and rescue mission!
- Children’s nourishment – The next most important item on the agenda is feeding a hungry child! They have ways of not letting you forget this urgent and important task. (One might be led to believe a delay of 5 minutes could lead to malnourishment bordering on collapse).
- Diaper changes – especially critical if they are leaking (see next bullet)
- Spills cleanup – spit up, food, etc (see previous bullet) before your carpet or other flooring has permanently changed and someone slips on a slippery surface!
- Keeping the kids occupied (
with arts and crafts, and activities I found on Pinterest… Sesame Street anyone?)
- Laundry when the clean underwear has run out– you can usually scrounge up an outfit, even if it’s last year’s clothes, but clean underwear is a non-negotiable.
- Coaching/ Training: my child, please, please, please, please listen?
- Picking up so there is a path to walk in the house (again, safety first! J )
- Prepping dinner (sometimes this means warmed up mac & cheese and a veggie for Ellianna, and later…. Did I mention my husband grills?)
- Dishes – Click here to see my kitchen challenges
And in between, in the brief times of quiet, e.g., during Weston’s naptime and when Ellianna is at school, squeezing in reading, writing, and things that require some extended time of focus, because those things are not possible when little children are afoot.
Then, when all the above is under control, projects like deeper cleaning, de-cluttering and organizing can be done. Some days, I don’t get past the first 5 items and barely squeeze 6 in if the situation is desperate. Other days, I get so much done, I’m having visions of finishing my goal list early for the year (because I have frequent bouts of insanity).
The important thing I have to remember is, there is nothing more important, no higher calling, than caring for my children. If I don’t get beyond the basic tasks, I have still had a very successful day as a mama. Though the tasks are small and repetitive, if they are done with love and cheer, (let’s say most of the time), mamas get a gold star. This is a season of life, a snapshot of the journey, and it’s totally ok.