"God made man simple; man's complex problems are of his own devising." Ecclesiastes 7:30 JB
I have been thinking about the idea of simplicity lately...and how I tend to over-complicate things.
So for my own peace of mind, and for the sake of the rest of my family, there are some routines (or daily habits) that we have that make life simpler around here.
Knowing what I am doing every morning takes the guess work out of the first part of the day. Morning routine items include my devotions, putting on the coffee, getting Brian's lunch together, putting a load in the wash, changing Ian's diaper and clothes, emptying the dishwasher, waving "good-bye!" to Brian/Daddy as he sets off to work, making the beds, getting myself dressed, breakfast for the kids and me, drying my load of laundry, and school. It seems like a lot, but actually, several of these things take little to no time at all.
It goes into the washer as part of the morning routine, and once it is dried and folded, I don't think of laundry until the next morning. Both kids put their own laundry in the hampers, so I do not have to chase down dirty clothes. Addie puts her own laundry away in her dresser drawers. I remember working on this with Addie when she was much younger, but now that she is older, the time I put in back then has payed dividends.
This method has kept the sink empty throughout the day. However, this also calls for the dishwasher to be ready for dirty dishes. As I mentioned, emptying the dishwasher has become one of my morning routine items. Addie and Ian help with putting away the dishes and items that go in the lower cabinets. Addie keeps an eye on Ian and only lets him help with nonbreakable items. As she gets bigger, she will take over my part of the "putting away" and Ian will take over her current job.
Throughout the day, as things get pulled out for use, I have been making a conscious effort to make sure they go back as soon as we are finished using them. So many times, it is easier to say, "I'll get it later." But the rule is "if you take it out, you put it away." Even if it takes forever! It really is worth the time and effort now to teach them how to put things away the was we want them so later, we are not having to undo something that was done incorrectly.
Throughout the day, things are bound to get left out accidentally. We do a "Clean Sweep", which is basically beginning at one end of the house, walking through each room making sure that it looks the way it is supposed to, and moving on tho the next room. I usually time myself for 15 minutes for the whole house (because the house is already in order, this should only take 15 minutes). The kitchen is always the last room that I hit.