Remember how I said I had to get to my basement and try to organize it slightly? Ok, so this is what it looked like “before”. That’s only the one side of the basement. There was still an area behind the camera (which wasn’t that bad – one side of the stairs is where the bed is and the other side of the stairs is where we have the laundry/storage area). Since I had the motivation to clean it up, I got right to it, bright and early. I’ve learned that when I feel the unction to do something, I need to do it then and there, before that feeling and motivation leaves. Ha!
So Z and I headed downstairs. It wasn’t that easy to straighten up when he’s down there with me. Anytime I started to sort through the toys to determine what should stay and what should go into storage, he would find some toy he forgot about and want to play with it. Now, if I was smart, like my sister? I would rotate toys, like she does. She puts some toys in bins and stores them for a month or two. Then she switches them out for the toys that are already out. Her boys have “brand new” toys to play with and entertain themselves! I’ve considered doing this. However, the toys that are in “storage” (as in – toys he can still play with that are age-appropriate), would be in the basement..as they are now. The basement is my second toy-room. I use this as my we-can’t-go-outside-or-leave-the-house-and-need-something-new-to-entertain-us tool. It serves me well. I’ve been using this for well over a year. The basement is also storage for everything else – papers, clothes, craft supplies, piano, sewing machine, dry-goods, an extra freezer, laundry, tool room, and everything in-between. So, this basement is definitely used!
Anyway, I worked hard, cleaning, putting younger toys away and I did take apart his activity bouncer….My husband asked if I was sad about that and I wasn’t really. I mean, he loved that bouncer. He still bounces ALL the time – in his crib, on the furniture (grrr), on us – wherever he can bounce, he likes to bounce! I was more frustrated that it didn’t come apart into easier-to-store pieces. Maybe that frustration helped any fend off any nostalgia, lol! This is what our basement currently looks like:
I did the best that I could with what I have – I used only what I had on hand. I used a garbage bag to store his bouncer (it was too large and awkward to try to fit in a bin) and two smaller walking toys. I placed the bouncy house that was on the couch onto the floor beside the couch. I put away papers and the floor potty that was sitting on my sewing table (that bin on the sewing table is full of sewing supplies – on top of that bin is a wireless speaker we use outside). The bikes are in the best possible place. That stinking HUGE double stroller really doesn’t have any other place to be. So it will stay there, in front of the hope chest (given to me by my parents for my 16th birthday – that is full of memories…wedding, birthday presents, an Amish dress my grandma made me..).
I vacuumed the entire basement, including the stairs (and then went ahead and vacuumed all the vents up on the main floor). I also vacuumed up countless spiders in the basement bathroom. It was gross. I don’t know when I was last in there. Probably the last time my parents were up here. I shut that door and leave it, always, until someone comes into town. So that bathroom needed a good cleaning. I did it, though. I braved all the spiders and dirt and cleaned it!
After I accomplished the feat of cleaning the basement, I decided I could take the afternoon (aka, nap-time) to read and just relax. I haven’t done that in a while – where I don’t sit on my laptop and do a bunch of online things. But I did it yesterday!! It felt so good! 🙂
My husband went golfing after work, so Z and I had a little mommy/son date. What did we do? Well, we headed to a local consignment shop to look for shoes for Z. I was able to find one pair of tennis shoes and one pair of brown dress shoes. It’s REALLY hard to find used shoes, the bigger the size, for boys! I get it, trust me, I get it. They are really rough on shoes. They play hard. But it’s a bummer for me – since I really have enjoyed paying $2-$5 for his shoes so far. I feel that is ending. Normally, I have a huge selection to choose from and can’t decide what to get. So I end up buying too many. Nope, this time I literally didn’t have a selection. I had to choose these shoes. Boo.
After I picked the shoes, we wandered (read: I chased my son as he ran around the store examining anything that caught his fancy) around, looking at the toys they had. Z did a great job in obeying when I said we couldn’t buy any toys. He really wanted this toy microwave that made the appropriate noises. I contemplated it, but it was $8.50. I’m just too cheap to pay that much for a used toy. Maybe it’s a good deal? I don’t know. Either way, I had just spent the morning trying to ELIMINATE toys, I sure wasn’t going to add to it again, lol!
We headed home, played outside with the neighbor children for a few (Z also chased and treed a squirrel – to which my mom and sister insisted Z needs a sibling as he’s taking on way too many traits of our dog, lol!) and then we ate a nice dinner together, chatting together. I missed my husband being there, but I also treasure all these moments. I love hearing Z call me and say “Mommy? Mommy, play. Please?” So we played. We played with his barn and animals. We played with some math puzzle cards he has. Then we took out his blocks and built tower after tower. Daddy came home just in time for the bedtime routine so we all settled in for some reading and snuggling on the couch. Then it was off to bed for Z while mommy and daddy caught each other up on the day.
This morning, when I went downstairs to work out, our dog followed me. This is completely normal. However, she changed her pattern, which is odd. Normally, she will lay right next to me while I’m on the recumbent bike. This morning? She walked right up to the couch where the bouncy house used to be and settled right in. Hint taken, my sweet dog – I will leave the couch empty for you.
Sweet girl – she isn’t allowed on the furniture on the main floor, but she knows this furniture. Why? Well, she knows this furniture because it used to be our main couches. That is, until she destroyed them. She loves to “nest”, aka dig and root in circles until she’s comfortable. Well, if we’re home, we can stop her from destroying anything. But we had left one day, leaving her to roam the house. We came home to a VERY large rip in the couch pillow. I sewed it, flipped the pillow over and we moved on. Came home a while later (not sure if was a week or months later), and she had done the same to another pillow, which I also sewed and flipped upside down. That’s about the time we decided she wasn’t allowed on furniture anymore and we began perusing for a good deal on some new stuff (this set is stained and old, so it’s not like it wasn’t a good idea). We moved this set downstairs and moved our dog into the bedroom anytime we left the house. It’s been a good 3 years, maybe longer, but she still loves this furniture that is downstairs.