Jessica Chastain in Armani Prive
My favorite of the night. So simple, yet stunning.
Amy Adams in Oscar de la Renta
My second favorite of the night. Loved the fabric of this dress.
Why on earth Anne Hathaway allegedly changed her mind about wearing a Valentino dress three hours before the red carpet, to wear this Prada piece still baffles me...
How I Do It: Cleaning
A clean house is a happy house. I can hear y'all now, already laughing. Okay, so my house is never completely clean, there are a few toys here and there, maybe some unmade beds, but for the most part, I try and go to bed with most of it put away. So does that make my house sad? Doubtful. While I'm no neat freak, by any means of the word, I still like to wake up to a somewhat uncluttered space. And I try to instill these values of respecting and taking care of things (including our house and toys) in my children.
Routine and organization is key. Like most routines for children (bedtime, meal time, etc.), once you start it, and do it for a few days, it doesn't seem like such a daunting task anymore. My girls used to hate cleaning up their toys (especially the ones they didn't even get out (i.e. L's mess)), but now they know that if they want an incentive (i.e. a sweet treat, to watch a show before bed, or extra books at bedtime), they'll clean it up. And if everything has its place, it's so much easier for them to know exactly where to put each toy. I wouldn't make it too complicated, maybe three or four different places. Mine are pretty simple. Books go in a certain place, then big toys, and then small toys. As my children get older, I'll probably start labeling bins, so they know exactly where to put specific toys, but for now, at this age, this works for us.
Orders. While it may seem easy to go into your child's room, and say "You cannot come out of here, until this mess is clean," that's a lot to understand, especially a young child. Based on my girls, I'd say that it's very rare that it actually gets clean, when attempting that approach. I always give W and E specific instructions of what they need to clean. Instead of just saying, "clean up your room," I'll say "put the books back on the bookshelf" or "put the small toys in the drawer." "Clean up your room" is a little too overwhelming for them, at their age. Sometimes I may offer incentives if they do a good job, but not always. Taking time to clean up a large mess also makes them realize that if they get something out to play with, that they should probably put it away after playing with it, so it won't create a mess in the first place (well, to be honest, we're still working on that one).
Lead by example. If the children see that we, as their parents, respect our things (clothes put away, dishes washed, bed made, etc.), they'll learn to do the same thing. I'm pretty tidy, but it's the hubs that I'm usually cleaning up after. I know I'm attempting to train the kids, but trying to train a grown man, that's set in his ways, has proven to be a little more challenging. No matter how easy I make it for him, he still fails in the end, seriously, no matter how hard he tries in the beginning. At least he tries, I'll give him that. He'll happily admit to anyone that he's a slob though, so at least he's not denying it. Needless to say, while I teach the children how to clean, they try and show daddy what they've learned. Better than nothing. And this goes to show too, that instilling habits of cleanliness at an early age, will hopefully be engrained in their minds, as they become adults.
A little help from some friends. Confession: I have two cleaning ladies that visit us every other week. These two days are seriously my favorite days of each month! In the beginning, the hubs wasn't sold on having helpers to clean, but they're seriously my sanity! Let's put it this way, and I'm sure y'all can relate, if I spent the entire day cleaning my house, and the hubs walked in from work, maybe not even noticing how clean the house was, throws his work shoes and clothes on the floor, tracking in dirt, and not putting his dishes away, that'd be a little frustrating... Well, when I'm not having to take the time to clean, like my cleaning ladies do, then it doesn't bother me as much, because I know that the cleaning I do (cleaning up after meals, snacks, bathing the children, laundry, etc.), on the days that the ladies aren't at our house, isn't so bad. That's why I think I enjoy being a stay-at-home so much. P.S. I LOVE doing laundry, now if I could just have an actual laundry room, that'd be nice.
How do you teach your children to clean?
More importantly, how do you teach your husband to clean? Ha!
Hope y'all have a fabulous start to your week!