I Don’t Know How You Do It

Lately some of my posts have garnered the comments, “Where do you find the time?”

I feel like I have to answer that one. The time factor is actually pretty simple:

1. Dishes pile up in my sink.

2. Floors go unvacuumed far too long.

3. Laundry gets piled up and ignored.

4. My family eats a LOT of meals from Stouffer’s.

5. My business doesn’t get the attention it deserves

6. We’ve got things around the house that need to be repaired–but we never get to them.

and so and and so on. It’s far from perfection over here–in fact, sometimes it’s just a big old mess–really–look in the background of my pictures.

Every day I get up and I have only one priority–Charlie. After that it’s my husband, and then probably this blog and way down on the list are things like housekeeping and cooking dinner, and other things that are priorities for other people. A lot of times I feel like a complete failure as far as “home-making” is concerned.
But I can live with a messy house. Right now, my energy is on Charlie. I can sweep when I’m old. I can promote my art when I’m old. Babies don’t keep.

Fish banjo–idea taken from Gymboree and modified for our theme. Look at that right hand use!

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  1. TMI Tara says:

    Your priority list sounds a lot like mine. It might be different from most people's priorities, but I think we've got it right ;O)

  2. Amen, Katy. I share your order of priorities! Although I use the words "cooking dinner" very loosely. We are big fans of frozen. "Nuking dinner" is more like it.

  3. Janis @ Sneak Peek At Me says:

    <<– Yeah, what she said! It's a huge accomplishment if I shower before noon. 😉

  4. I couldn't agree more! Our house is a disaster area… but I spend lots of "quality time" with Adam — and that's what counts! Now, when I know company is coming… I do get a bit stressed!

    Great pictures of Charlie! He's such a cutie!

  5. I feel ya! I had a super clean, orderly house in my previous life. Now my socks stick to the wood floors…

  6. Candace says:

    Yeah, good stuff, Katy! We can just trash the dirty dishes and use recycled paper product, LOL! I am right there with you. I am doing great to make my bed in the morning and that only gets done on days when we have no therapies! I remember my grandmother always saying "what if you died and someone you didn't know had to come in your house, what would they see?"…..well, a whole bunch of equipment filling up the playroom (no room for toys, LOL!), lots of piles of papers that need to be filed and trashed, dusty coffee table(and fireplace and tv and furniture), 18 messages on the answering machine and one happy kid!

  7. I feel so much better now.

  8. Can I just say amen?
    Life is to short to regret the things left undone because you had to have a perfect house.
    Charlie is only going to be little for a little while. Revel in every single moment of it!

  9. I think you are wonderful. That's just the way it should be. You are a wonderful mother and a great inspiration to so many :)

  10. MelissaInk says:

    We're all hot messes somewhere in our lives.

  11. Kelli TenHaken says:

    Makes me feel good to know there are other moms out there who haven't mopped their kitchen floor in months! Our kiddos are much more important.

    Thanks for your earlier update about ABR! We are starting ABR in a few weeks and are so hopeful to see results. Those pictures of Charlie's progress are fantastic!

  12. Witkowski Family says:

    I have a little sign up in my kitchen that reads "If you mess up raising your children, nothing else you do really matters" and we live by that :)

  13. AMEN! I get that question all the time. Because I have a great house husband, and a dirty house is the least of my worries!

  14. This post made my heart sing.

    Honestly…I focus too much on stuff that doesn't matter.

    Thanks for inspiring me to skip the dishes…… really.

  15. Kristina says:

    Interesting post. I wonder if it would ring a bit differently if you had more than one child. I think that having two children – one with disabilities and one without – has kept my life more balanced. I need to think of both of them so that brings different activities into my life than if I only had one child.

    And, I had thought it was normal to stay at home and still have a messy house and sink full of dishes. After all, raising children is a full-time job and housework, well, that will keep! Looks like this is normal from the comments posted here and that makes me feel good :-)

  16. Kristina: I like to think that no matter how many children I have, they will always be my first priority!

  17. I think that a parent loves their children with their whole hearts. Dirty dishes and laundry will come and go, but these moments you can never recapture or recreate, no matter how hard you try. And when I die, I really hope people don't remember me only for the state of my house, but the state of my heart.

  18. When I get the "I don't know how you do it" comment, I am usually quick to tell the person that I'm NOT doing it. There is a big misconception out there that if I am able to get somewhere with the kids then I must be able to do it all. I've decided that when some folks make such comments they want to believe it's true because otherwise they should be doing something to help.

    I tend to do what has to be done. Some weeks things go great. And then others are like this week — we ate out all 4 nights because of dr appointments, therapy, school presentation, and parent teacher conferences I wouldn't have started dinner until 6:30 or later.

    I am really, really, really glad to hear that I'm not the only one with a house that is a mess.

  19. I love seeing these pics of him working hard!

  20. Kristina says:

    Katie – Of course, I didn't mean that your children wouldn't be your first priority if you had more than one :-) I just meant that the balance with more than one child is different. There isn't only one priority. It's something that I struggle with daily and is just an added dimension to what you post here.

    If there are two children, then you have two top priorities – Charlie and equally loved other little one. The daily stuff isn't as cut and dry anymore since there isn't one top priority. But, that's my take on it with two children and I was just wondering out loud a bit that I wonder what your take would be if there were two or more little ones around but you can't know until when/if that happens. I hope my comment didn't bother you, sometimes words can come across the wrong way in print instead of in person!

  21. Noah's Mom says:

    I made my husband read this one! My house is a disaster most of the time but Noah is well fed and taken care of (I knew my life would become about my children when I became a mother but holy cow! this kid can be such a handful :)) Babies don't keep…I love that!

  22. South Africans are lucky in that we have house helps coming in to do housework. We have somebody in twice a week and even with that I battle to keep the mess under control. But we are doing homeschooling and, as you say, this stage is far too short to worry about ironing the same shirt you ironed yesterday and will like have to iron again the day after tomorrow.