(for the first five posts in the series click the banner)
We'll just overlook the fact that it's taken me almost seven months to write all these posts. I could have practically had another baby by now. Ahem.
Cleaning. It sounds better when you call it nesting. Well, maybe not better, but not quite so boring. I've learned something about myself over the last thirteen years. While I love organizing, I hate cleaning. Okay, strongly dislike. I definitely enjoy the end result, but give me the choice of a sparkling clean house and a good book and the book wins hands down every. single. time. I'm not sure how much I should fight that and just suck it up and be responsible or just give in.
I most definitely like to have things in order before the arrival of a new baby, so once the pantry and the freezer are stocked I like to (pretty) methodically clean my house. Honestly, it's been so long (almost two years!) since I've done a pre-baby clean that I've kind of forgotten my methods. Either that or I can officially claim pregnant brain. (Did I just say that out loud?) Regardless, I don't really have much mental energy to put into laying it all out. Plus, everyone has different methods and levels of cleanliness that they like so there probably isn't a one-size-fits-all method.
So, here is what I do. I think.
Clean all the baseboards.
(For some reason this is the one thing my brain desperately needs to be done for me to feel I'm ready. I seriously used to crawl around on my hands and knees wiping them down and scraping up all the dust between the baseboard and the carpet but since I got a fabulous vaccum that has a super easy to use attachment this job has been upgraded from whenever I have a baby to whenever I vaccum. But I'm not confessing to how much more frequent that may actually be. :)
On a side note, I have read an interesting theory that God built the nesting instinct into expectant mothers to motivate them to stretch and maneuver their bodies into positions that help the baby settle into an optimal position for birth. I'm not sure how my last two posterior babies fit into that theory (except that we hired a friend to do quite a bit of the cleaning for me when I was pregnant with Grace and Haven was SO LATE that I had done all that cleaning a good six weeks earlier.) However, I do find it an intriguing theory that I tend to believe.
(Focus, Shyla, focus.)
Clean the baseboards.
Clean all the windows and sills.
Clean the porch. Which now includes scrubbing chicken poop. I am still undecided if having chickens is worth the whole poop-on-the-porch problem or not.
After that I tend to break it down by room.
~Wipe down the cabinets and appliances.
~Clean out the microwave
~Clean the oven (if you feel like it, which I usually don't)
~Re-organize the cabinets.
~Make labels for where things go if you (like me) seem to be the only person around who knows where things belong.
~Scrub around the edges of the cabinets and the refrigerator
~Clean the floor
~Re-organize anything that needs to be organized.
~Show people where re-organized things go and hope they remember. Possibly make aforementioned labels if appropriate.
~Clean out closets.
~Go through files, etc. and toss what you don't need.
~Stack up anything you don't necessarily need to deal with so it at least looks nice. Yes, this is a genuine method. Hush.
~Go through closets and organize, trash, give away.
~Weed through kids'
junk toys and stuff when they aren't home. If you're worried they might miss it, toss it in a box temporarily and if they've not noticed after a while make a little trip to the Goodwill.
~Go through bed side tables and put away books and anything else that needs to be taken care of.
~Make sure you have baby stuff ready. Obviously.
~Close your eyes. Tell yourself it's your husband's territory. Don't worry about it. Other than maybe cleaning out the extra refrigerator so you don't get grossed out. Consider paying one of your older kids to do this. Actually, consider paying your older kids to do anything in any of these categories. Bribery works too. Not that I have experience in that or anything. I've just heard.
That's it. That's all I've got. Feel free to let me know if I missed anything glaringly obvious. If I think of anything significant that I forgot I'll come back and add it in. Especially since at the rate my brain seems to be moving these days I may just need the posts to remind myself of what to do later on this year.
I'd also love to hear what *you* do!
Post with details coming soon...pinky promise.