It might come as a shock but one of the top five things I get asked on the regular is “how do you keep Ralph’s room so clean” or “how do you keep your house clean” with a toddler. The first thought that always comes to my head is “we pick up after ourselves?” but after I repetitively kept getting the question I guess that picking up is not everyones first action so I figured I would explain a little further. IMO (in my opinion) everyone has a method for their own madness and in this case I have method for cleanliness at our home.
I will say that Wade and I both have always preferred things tidy. My grandmother still tells me to this day that when we were younger she always loved sharing a room with me on holiday because I would keep the room so clean.
Okay, back to me and Wade…when it comes to our home (or his office), we prefer everything to have a place (even if that place is a junk drawer) and when it comes to bedrooms they should have a calm environment (aka not a lot of junk/clutter everywhere). For us, walking into a space that is cluttered and not organized creates unnecessary anxiety. I mean how is it relaxing that in the place you sleep there are piles or stuff everywhere? I mean come on, just pick it up instead of letting it ‘pile’ up.
We are also big on the idea that if we are not using something (or it does not *spark joy*), that we should get rid of it. I mean if I am not using something, I know someone else would probably enjoy it, so we donate it. This thought of getting rid of things we are not using overflows into our home as well. I cannot tell you the amount of toys, furniture, clothing baby clothes (and I still have SO many in case we decide one day that we will have another baby) I have donated. To me, it makes me so happy that there is a *new* mom out there using our gently used baby clothes and toys that Ralph has outgrown…or someone is getting to enjoy a rug or lamp that no longer works in our space. I mean what purpose does any of that stuff serve just sitting in a closet/garage collecting dust? Don’t event get me started on a storage unit…so unnecessary, just let it go!!!
If Ralph gets a new toy, we always pick a few to donate. It keeps his toy situation under control and it keeps the clutter to a minimum. Regarding his room and how we keep it clean, well we don’t actually keep toys in his room. If we ever did, I know we would keep it to a minimum or create a place/area for them (again, I am so pro everything having a place). The only sort of ‘fun’ thing we keep in his room are his books. Ralph LOVES his books. We always put them in his crib during his afternoon nap (in case he wakes up early it keeps him occupied) and we always read to him before bedtime. Again, less is more when it comes to his room which makes it SUPER easy to keep it clean. Plus, Ralph immediately becomes more relaxed when he is in his room. In this weird way he knows that he is going to be able to read a book, take a bath, get ready for bed or even a nap. It’s funny how much your kids mimic you, even at such an early age…Ralph will point out a piece of trash and one of his better tricks is throwing stuff away!
While I do know we just have one child, so it is probably easier to keep the tidiness up, I will say this is what works for us which IMO is kind fo the point of this post. I am also realistic and want to add that in the future this method could totally change for us but for now this is what we are doing.
Do you like to keep a tidy house? Do you hang onto things? Are you a fan of cleaning out and donating?? Would love to hear what works for you!