Tuesday, December 30, 2014



My kids were BOUNCING OFF THE WALLS. It was 0 ยบ F outside today, so we were a little stumped on what to do with all their energy.

Fritz is back at work and – I love him; it was great to have him around for 5 solid days over Christmas; but I was almost relieved when he walked out the door yesterday morning. The more he's around the more I start feeling like I'm doing a really disproportionate share of the housework. When he's gone, I'm DEFINITELY doing all the housework. So there's some degree of irony: Fritz's gone – Ann does all the housework – Ann isn't too frustrated about it. Fritz's home – Fritz does marginal amounts of housework – Ann is annoyed by his insufficient help.

I'm working on organizing the house over the holiday break. My work tends to be more focused thinking than productive action. Well, honestly, it's pretty much a lesson in futility, trying to organize with the kids underfoot. That I am even attempting to organize witnesses that the kids are better than ever at entertaining themselves. Really. Relative to where we were 4 months ago, there's been a giant leap in self-sufficiency. But it's still an uphill battle to do something like organize.

For our upcoming renovations, all five of us will be moving into and sharing ONE bedroom. For about 3 months. Well, it could be a shorter amount of time, but I'm thinking long so that I can be happily surprised rather than disappointed. Fritz and I are trying to look at the positive: with two-thirds of the house under construction there will be less area to clean (on a daily basis (I hope))! At least the construction is happening when school is in session; this would be much tougher if the kiddos were on vacation! It's also an opportunity to clean things out of the house!

Needless to say, it's taking some forethought to cut our living space to one-third of the current size. Fritz and I have different understandings of how thoroughly this needs to be done. Fritz's version is along the lines of just-push-everything-into-corners-and-cover it with plastic. My version is more involved. I feel like I need to rearrange toys and rearrange the living space in addition to the bedroom consolidation. Can't use my desk space? Then I need to move it somewhere where I can work. I also want to pack up all things we won't be using and donate/throw out all the things that we don't need. Why store it if we don't need it anymore, right? I might have a point, but I'll acknowledge this kind of thinking might be making a mountain out of a mole hill.

What is apparent is that Fritz and I have some different ideas about how the space in our house functions, and what's important. This is not surprising: I'm the only adult at home with various combinations of children for about 10 hours a day. Fritz is only really here with awake children (and me) for an additional 3 hours. Of course we have different priorities and perspectives!  I want to switch the lounge-y sofas (picture here) into the space we'll be using during renovations – because they're more versatile and comfy – and leave The Sofa for The Art of Proper Conversation covered in plastic. Really? It's so hard to move the sofas! Fritz sighs.

I worry that if we are too rash about our preparations, I'm the one who will be grinding her teeth the most.


Pregnantly Plump said...

I'm sorry it's so frustrating. We keep our house a balmy 60 in the winter, and I freeze when it's 60 degrees. I try very hard to keep us locked in the playroom with 2 heaters going. I think I'm the only one who likes this arrangement. I prefer cramped, and the boys and Bob prefer to roam and run and fight and play. Your kids are probably the same, so I'm sorry. I know it will be frustrating trying to keep them in a small space, and keep that small space clean.

Pregnantly Plump said...
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