sanity saver 1: mama doesn’t eat ‘til the mess is cleaned up

sanity savers: a semi-regular series in which I share quirky tidbits and habits discovered in my quest to avoid panic, head trouble off at the pass, and uphold law and order in the West (or wherever you hang up your spurs).

Naptime is a gift.  More specifically, Spud’s naptime is a gift.  The only two hours in the day when I can sit in peace and quiet and really concentrate . . . on bills, or organizing my seeds, or sewing, or knitting, or whatever—there’s never a shortage of options.

So, who wants to begin the golden hours of naptime staring at a mess like this (or worse)?


Not me, for one (even if I am doing the bills).  And, I’m guessing, not you, either.

But for several months, all too frequently, this is where I began naptime.  In the kitchen.  Cleaning up a mess.  Which often put me in a really grumpy mood for naptime, which ruins the whole concept of naptime.  See?  A vicious cycle.  One that had to be broken.

It was as simple as making a rule for myself.

(Inner dialogue as follows)

Me: “The kitchen must be cleaned up before you (I, me, ThimbleNest, you know what I mean) sit down to eat lunch.”

Me: “But won’t Spud feel lonely, neglected, and scarred for life because you’re not eating with him?”

Me: “No.  Look, he’s right over there, 10 feet away, eating, talking to you, looking at the birds.  He’s fine.”

Me: “But I’m hungry.”

Me: “It’ll take you two minutes, tops.  You’ll be able to eat most of your lunch with him anyways.”

Me: “o.k.”

Riveting and revolutionary, I know.

Once I give myself one of these little rules, it’s very hard for me to break them—a guilt complex or something, but it works.

So now, before I eat my lunch, my kitchen usually looks like this.


Spud and I still eat most of our lunch together.  And, an unforeseen bonus?  Because he finishes eating before me, he has time to play before I whisk him off to bed.  Win-win.

Naptime has never been so wonderful.

How do you protect your special times of day?  Do you set “rules” or “rewards” for yourself?  Or is that just my quirk?


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