Taking Pride in a Clean Home

by Melanie Edwards on May 14, 2010 · 10 comments

in home

Cleaning Supplies

It seems like everyday I hear a woman talking about struggling to balance her life. You know that I am a believer of trying to find balance, at least whatever balance means to you. But, it’s a reality that something always gives.

Some days your work may suffer, other days perhaps your me-time suffers, and I’m sure a lot of days, it’s the house that suffers. That’s why we try to come up with a cleaning schedule and attempt to clean while working from home. It’s all in an effort to juggle our many roles and get a handle on our super mom expectations.

And, believe me, I know all about those expectations. I expect that I should be able to take care of my daughter, my house, and my husband. Taking care of myself was not something I was taught early on – it wasn’t until I was older that this became of importance. As I’ve mentioned before, I grew up hearing things like, “You have to learn how to cook and clean, because when you get older and get married, you’ll need to take care of your house, husband, and children.”

Now, I try very hard not to say things like that to my daughter. I don’t want her to learn how to cook and clean so that she can take care of others. I want her to learn so she can take care of herself. Instead I tell her: “We have to clean the house because we don’t want to live in a dirty house, do we? We want to take care of our things and be proud of where we live.Pride. Orgullo.

In a way, that’s what it’s all about, isn’t it? Outside of cleaning because we need our space to be clean for sanitary reasons, we also clean because we want to be proud of our space. Doesn’t it make you feel so much better when you look around your house and see it’s clean and in order? The days there’s a lot of clutter around, it’s almost like my brain feels cluttered right along with it. The minute it’s clean again, I feel a sense of calm.

I think pride plays a big role in how we take care of our house. At least, I find this is true for myself and many other women I know. Somos orgullosas de nuestros hogares. We are proud of our homes.

Do you find that pride plays a role in your home? Share with me any cleaning-related stories – either from your own childhood or from your adult life.

***Want to teach your kids to help clean? Check out this list of chores for preschoolers.

This post is an entry into the Mi Hogar Mi Orgullo contest.

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Sra. López May 14, 2010 at 8:56 am

This reminds me of a term I learned a few years ago. “House proud” – it's used to refer to someone who takes pride in their home and its cleanliness/appearance – no matter how modest it is. I am like that, mostly as a result of my husband. (I used to be much more laid back and cleaned for his benefit – but now I like it that way, too.)

I think you're teaching your daughter a great lesson by emphasizing that the cleaning/cooking is for taking care of HERSELF. Nothing wrong with taking care of others, but so many women give, give, give until they have nothing left.

I have 2 sons and much to my Suegra's befuddlement, I've been teaching them to cook and clean from a very young age. It's important that they know how to do these things for themselves for when they're single/college students, and when they marry, the household labor should be divided 50/50 if their spouse is also working outside the home. It never hurt anyone to learn how to scramble eggs or do a load of laundry :)

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modernmami May 17, 2010 at 7:33 am

One of my brothers learned to cook and clean…mostly because he was going to live by himself at college. But, mostly? I was the one doing the after school house chores & helping cook dinner growing up. I am going to change that if I have a boy one day. But, he'll learn from seeing my husband set a good example. My husband helps around the house. :)

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angelica perez May 16, 2010 at 11:03 am

Growing up, I remember my mother cleaning for days before a big event, a birthday party or a family get-together. While she did clean on a regular basis, it seemed to me that having a clean home because people were coming, was a huge thing for her. It was more about “el que diran” (what people are going to say) then having a clean home for sanitary reasons or for everone's comfort. So much energy was spent deep cleaning and organizing, that by the time the event came around, you were just plain exhausted, and could hardly enjoy the event. I grew up resenting the idea that I should care about what others think about my personal space, and my lifestyle. So by the time I had my own home and family, I knew that I didn't want to pass on this unnecessary burden to my children. In life, you pick and choose where you spend your time, based on your core values. Given my busy schedule (which we all have), I choose to spend my time in other things that are more important to me and my family, then on making sure I have a perfect home to show the public. My guests at home may not see a squeeky clean home, but they will certainly see happy children and a very loving family.

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modernmami May 17, 2010 at 7:33 am

I used to hear the same thing…”que diran la gente?” I always wondered who “they” were? One time I asked, but I think I got “the look” from my mom instead of a real answer. jaja!

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pixielation May 16, 2010 at 4:47 pm

I tweeted about this the other day too – I said a clean house makes me happy (and so today I had one hour of happiness). My family cause the mess, I clean it up – but when I leave it to get dirty, I feel unhappy. I so have to be that diva who can manage to work, help out at the school AND keep on top of the washing, ironing, polishing of school shoes, homework management, AND house cleaning.

And I do that (I mean… I TRY and do that) for ME.

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modernmami May 17, 2010 at 7:34 am

Everyone has their different levels of what they feel they need to do, right? For some people, they'd be right there with you. Others would feel it's too much. But, if that's what keeps you sane…then, hey, go for it. :)

Reply

modernmami May 17, 2010 at 8:33 am

One of my brothers learned to cook and clean…mostly because he was going to live by himself at college. But, mostly? I was the one doing the after school house chores & helping cook dinner growing up. I am going to change that if I have a boy one day. But, he'll learn from seeing my husband set a good example. My husband helps around the house. :)

Reply

modernmami May 17, 2010 at 8:33 am

I used to hear the same thing…”que diran la gente?” I always wondered who “they” were? One time I asked, but I think I got “the look” from my mom instead of a real answer. jaja!

Reply

modernmami May 17, 2010 at 8:34 am

Everyone has their different levels of what they feel they need to do, right? For some people, they'd be right there with you. Others would feel it's too much. But, if that's what keeps you sane…then, hey, go for it. :)

Reply

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