My Messy Mom Life: 5.8.19
At the beginning of the year, Netflix made Marie Kondo a household name, and many of us started asking ourselves, “Does this bring me joy?” as we tossed everything we could into a big, black trash bag. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, check out the show Tidying Up and prepare for your life to change. All of this purging brought back the topic of minimalism as it relates to motherhood. Could having less stuff really help our minds have more clarity, and even better, would it bring us and our kids more peace? It’s amazing for children’s imaginations when they have to create a game out of almost nothing, and their focus dramatically increases when they only have access to one toy at a time. Can you fathom how painless cleanup is after a make-believe game instead of an activity with a million little pieces? (Cue Lego screams.) I’m not saying to deprive your kids of toys, but many are just not needed.
My house is often a mess, and I usually go on a purging rampage every Monday. Kids accumulate stuff constantly so it’s hard to escape. But after some research and many not-so-graceful ‘mean mom’ reactions to everyday messes, I now think a lot more before I buy. I have a few tips for maintaining your sanity and creating a more minimalist environment in your home.
One room for toys: This is not always possible, but if it is, do it. We partially finished a space in our basement, and that’s where our kids play! They are free to make a mess down there without me losing it, and we clean it together every couple of days. I’m so much happier.
One toy at a time: Easier said than done. I have a kid who wants to get out every item she owns at once. Making her clean up one toy before she plays with another makes for a lot more focused and more fun playtime. When my daughter turned 5 and got a zillion presents, she tried to open every box in a frenzy. I put more than half the presents in a massive bin in storage. Every couple of weeks, I got out a new present and put one of the other toys away. She felt like she was getting new stuff all of the time and never got bored! You even can do this with the toys you already have. #circulate
$5 birthday parties: This is a fairly new, trendy concept. On the invitation, ask parents to bring $5 instead of a gift. Then, your child can buy something he really wants with the money. I think it’s genius. I’m sure you could even bump it to $10, and parents still would be insanely grateful.
Get rid of three before buying one: My husband got me on this (don’t tell him I’m giving him credit). Every time I go shopping, he tells me to get rid of three things I don’t wear, sometimes for every piece I buy! It makes me feel lighter, and my clothes actually get worn. I’ve started doing it with my kids’ clothes, too, every time I come home with an Old Navy bag, and voila! Their drawers are not busting open.
I know there are a million tips to becoming more minimalistic. I’m currently trying to implement this into my digital life; hopefully I can share soon. The important thing is to start somewhere. Do one thing today to relieve stress and chaos from your life.
Katelyn Young is a local mom of two (her #crumblycrew) who shares real moments of motherhood as it relates to fashion, food and fun! Follow her on Instagram at @_katelynyoung_ or follow her blog at thebejuledlife.com.