house or home

I have a love-hate relationship with home shows and home magazines. I love to be inspired by people’s creativity and the artistic expression of their own personality, but I don’t want to be drawn into the trap of buying things because they are just so “now”. This meant that for a long time I swung to far to the “do nothing” side of things with my home decoration, but now I love to seek out things that are an expression of me and my family, and that create the space that we need. This is different for every family but for us it needs to be peaceful, welcoming and comfortable.

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the myth of the perfect house

One of my friends posted a photo on Facebook recently of what a real house looks like when you are home with the kids.

It generated a number of responses from other mums, all acknowledging the reality of their house, and the desire to let go of the myth of the perfect house.

I know that there are a number of things more important than cleaning house, but it got me thinking as to why the house takes preeminence in a mum’s life.

For me, I was nowhere near as house proud before children, and conversely my house was a lot tidier!

So here are my thoughts on the subject:

  • I spend a lot of time in my house so I notice the things that need doing more
  • I spend time on the floor playing and notice things from different angles. For example I cleaned the underside of the window sills the other day – go figure!
  • as a mum I have people over more often. Either for playdates, or because it is easier for them to come here, than for me pack up the whole family and go to them
  • often visits happen on the spur of the moment  – “my two are awake and your two are awake, at the same time! Let’s catch up”
  • and we can’t escape the fact that children inevitably create mess, simply by eating, or gluing, or playing with 53 different toys at the same time

So yes there is an element of letting go emotionally of the myth of the perfect house, and yes there are definitely more important things to do than tidy and clean. But there are also a number of practical reasons why the house takes such an important place in a mum’s life.

On that note I’d better go tidy up!

the little things

This New Year, Mr and I made very basic changes to our lives, rather than resolutions. Little things that make our lives run smoother, like setting the table for breakfast the night before. However we have lots of big projects around the house that need finishing. The first one I wanted to tackle was my walk-in-robe.

Mr questioned this focus, as it is not an area of the house that anyone else sees, and in terms of visitors there are other areas that need more work. Then I explained that my walk-in was the first place I went every morning, and the chaos in there, meant that my day felt messy right from the outset.

So we bought some shoe racks, a cabinet and a bunch of wall hooks, and I feel like everything is much more organised. More importantly, I walk in there in the morning, choose my clothes for the day and start the day in an organised manner. For me it is like a healthy breakfast, I start the day right.

Do you like me have a need for your ‘little rooms’ to be organised?

Next I want to tackle the front hallway, again a very small and not very important room in the house, but one where I seem to spend a lot of time, in and out with the girls … so far all I have managed is some fresh flowers from my garden.