Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Whistle While You Work...


Ode to Generation LAZY!!

Well, I'm much too lazy to write an actual 'ode', so this post will have to do. I've thought about this a bazillions times in the last several years, but lately, especially. And I'm allowed to be critical about this subject, because let's face it: I'm in desperate need of this criticism.

To what do I allude, you ask? Work. REAL, HARD, WORK. My grandparents and great grandparents worked their tails off daily. Just to get by. They had to. The cows had to be milked, the gardens had to be planted and weeded and watered. The sewing had to be done. The laundry had to hang dry. The butter had to be churned. I'm sure this list could go on and on. You get the idea.

So now I come to me. My life today. I am so grateful for the luxuries that I have that make life a little easier. I'm glad I'm not out shoveling manure or hand stitching all of my children's clothing or anything like that. I feel overwhelmed enough with my modern day work load. But lately I've realized that I may be the laziest person I know.

Growing up, we had chores around the house. We dusted and vacuumed daily. My poor mother had to nag us to death to get it done, but eventually (most of the time) we did. We did dishes, scooped up the dog droppings in the backyard, helped in the yard, cleaned our own rooms and toys. The usual.

Then one day, we had a bigger house, a bigger yard, more to clean, more to weed. We griped and groaned and eventually my parents got sick of trying to make us and hired help. My parents themselves continued to work, but paid others to come in and help where we children would not. I don't blame them.

Now I'm a grown up with a husband and a family and a home (soon!!) and responsibility. And although my parents gave it their honest BEST effort, I have not learned how to work. I was a lazy kid. Now I am a lazy adult.

I do dishes and laundry and I cook and my kids are always dressed and bathed and their teeth are brushed. We stick to our routine pretty closely and the kids are generally in bed on time. We always make beds first thing in the morning. My house is USUALLY straightened. I'm good at the basics.

But when it comes to cleaning...I'm a disaster!! When guests are coming over, I clean it...usually. When there are things sticking to my feet on the floor, I clean it...usually. When you can barely see yourself in the mirror, I clean it...usually. When the car is full of crumbs and gunk and I can no longer see out the windows, I clean it...usually. When it gets really disgusting, I clean it...usually. When you can see a black ring starting to form in the toilet bowl, I clean it...unless Jason is home. Then I make him clean it. Get the idea?

So what am I thinking with wanting to get my own house?! I'll just run it down!!

I DREAD cleaning. I have a really hard time getting myself to start. Then once I get going I realize that I'm just fine. And I feel so great when it's done.

Lately I'm trying to be better. I think, especially since having Payson, I've been in a rut. I get ready...when I have to. I clean...when I have to. I go out...when I have to. It's been depressing.

So I've been making an effort to get ready, whether I have somewhere to go or not. I'm calling friends and making plans to get out of the house, just to get out of the house. I'm trying to read my scriptures more and really search. I'm trying to pray more sincerely. I'm trying to work out and eat more appropriate portions and more healthfully. I'm trying to make little efforts to make BIG changes.

So far, so good. Everything is working. I'm happier. I feel SO MUCH BETTER! Getting my behind out of bed in the morning is hard. Getting to bed early is also hard. Getting myself onto the treadmill is hard. Ignoring the goldfish crackers and choosing a celery stick instead is hard. But I'm doing it. And I feel so great when it's done!!

Twas the lesson I (re) learned yesterday. I got up early, got everyone fed and ready, got Payson off to preschool, came home and worked out, picked Payson up, ran some errands, fed the kids again, put Jack down for his nap, and realized that I didn't have anything to do for a while.

Turns out, Jack didn't actually want to take a nap yesterday. So instead, Payson threw on her swimming suit and I put Jack in his stroller with some toys outside and we decided to wash the car!! That's right, I decided to wash it myself. No automatic car wash here, folks!! I cleaned out the car, vacuumed and wiped down the inside, cleaned the windows, busted out the soap and hose and bucket and rags and got that sucker SPARKLY CLEAN!! And it felt SO GREAT when it was done!!

I just kept thinking to myself, it's just a silly car wash. Most people wash their own cars. Why am I so darn proud of myself? But the answer I came up with is: I DON'T CARE!! I worked hard, with no nagging mom on my tail, and got the job done. AND IT FELT GOOD.

Light bulb moment: I LIKE to work!! I like the feeling of being productive. I like looking at my work when it's done and feeling that pride. I like sitting in a clean car, or house, or whatever it may be, and not having the thought floating around in the back of my mind that I have to do that (and a million other things) later.

I guess that's why the Lord says, "Organize yourselves; prepare every needful thing, even a house of prayer, a house of fasting, a house of faith, a house of learning, a house of glory, a house of order, a house of God;" D&C 109:8.

And that one scripture could take me off on SO MANY tangents that have run through my mind the last few days, but I'll save those for another time, another day. But for now, my latest revelation:

I LIKE TO WORK!!


(Mom and Dad, I hope if you're reading this, I don't give you an actual heart attack).

14 comments:

Lali Johnson said...

I am so the same way! But it does make me feel so much better to clean!

Sara said...

I am one of those nerds that totally loves to clean...of course with bright green carpet, you HAVE to vacuum. Anyway, a friend of mine recommends flylady.net for motivation to keep up on housework. I am just programmed (or was programmed by my dear sweet mother) that way. :)

Burgon Fam said...

I know what you mean by getting in a rut....I will be in such a happy place when i am keeping myself busy, getting ready, staying clean, but if i let myself get lazy for two min I get stuck in a rut and it takes much more effort to pull myself out than it would have to just stay on top of things...but you surly are not the only one deary! nothing beats the pride you feel when you have put in a hard days work. even if that means you "just washed the car" that feeling you had will motivate you to want to do something like that every day!

Lindsay said...

I feel ya. But usually the only thing that I hate doing os laundry. The rest of my house I am kind of a clean freak, but my bedroom is another stroy. It has clothes everywhere. So I found a solution...A lady once told me this and I have tried it for the last month and it seems like it makes everything else cleaner and easier too. What you do is when you get ready for bed at night, take all your families clothes and do a small load every night, and put it away that night too. That way you never get to far behind and it takes over. so I wash all our clothes from that day at night and do Garments every couple days. It seems to be better to do a small load everynight instead of 12 loads for 2 days staright to get caught up. Now that I wrote you a novel, it's just a suggestion to help me keep things out of ruts!

Megan said...

If you like to clean so much lady, come to my house! Actually, fly over here to China and clean my apartment! =) (And just so you know, we DO have to hang dry our clothes and it's not so fun. You have to wait like 2 days for them to dry because of the humidity.) But I, too, sympathize with getting in a rut. I'm slowly getting out of one now and it's so refreshing! Love ya!

Kristin said...

AMEN!!
I love to ask Jared to clean the bathroom :)
Right now while I am on the computer the bathroom is dirty enough to talk to me and ask me to clean it but I don't want to listen!
I also Hate to clean, I am horrible I am not so bad that I am stepping on piles of garbage but sometimes I do step on piles of clothes :)

Emily said...

thanks i needed to hear this!

Randi said...

McKenna, I love you!

The Smith Fam said...

I am so glad to hear that I am not the only one that goes through this kind of stuff. I need to get out of the house too. I have to plan my whole week with at least one thing to do so that I stay sane. I wanted to tell you that I think you are so awesome. I love reading your blog. If you ever need to get out I am always free!

womanoforange8 said...

I like working too...if only it didn't hurt my back so darn much! Doing dishes and cleaning up the kitchen has been so much easier since buying the portable dvd player. It's a lame way to get me to clean...but it works! I've hosed down my car before too. It feels really good to be moving and working and getting that blood really pumping. You know when you said you only do those things when you have to? Well, I don't do it anyway...and I don't even have kids. You've got some great goals. For now, I'm just trying to keep up with my husband's messes. (He keeps leaving the milk out of the refrigerator and dirtying at least 2 cups for every meal. Obnoxious lovey!)

Burgon Fam said...

thanks for the comment! but honestly I think every woman would kill for curls like yours! seriously...

Burgon Fam said...

thanks for the comment! but honestly I think every woman would kill for curls like yours! seriously...

Jason & Kelli West said...

You make me laugh McKenna! I love this post. I understand what you are talking about. I use to hate to do a lot of stuff around the house, now if I put music on I REALLY enjoy cleaning...as weird as that sounds!! Oh and that one thing where you yelled...working on it...if ya know what I mean! And no you are not being nosy! I would love to get together with ya before you move though! Maybe you me and Kristin can go do something! Let me know...

Erin and Family said...

Ok McKenna, you got me posting again. I think it's your turn now. Very cute post by the way & sooo true.