Sunday, April 3, 2011

Working Together



Our van blesses us in many ways...and I've found myself in gratitude for it, including it in our prayers before bedtime. It is easy to take for granted such a convenient mode of transportation-how often do we meet families, here in America, without a car these days? Growing up, there were several years that my mom and I didn't have access to a vehicle very often, forcing us to walk or ride the bus to where we needed to go. I don't resent that time- I learned, at a very young age, the wonder of public transportation, of meeting people from all walks of life, and taking a slow but serene route through the day. There was no rushing to get to such and such- buses work on their own schedule. As a student, then a working young adult, then a mother and a homeschooler, I depended on the Metro (the Washington, D.C. area subway system) to get me to museums or to work and back. I've gotten lazy, however, since we moved to Pittsburgh, and it is just in the last two years that I've tried to be more cognisant of our "road time." We have lived with just one vehicle, for the last eighteen months, by choice. This has mostly been fine, except for one day,six weeks ago, when my husband took our van to work and I had to learn, quickly, to use the trolley to get Seth to speech therapy, then to the grocery store, and back home. All in all, the ride and walk took about four hours out of my afternoon (partially because we got lost). Three days ago, though,with much trepidation, we decided to put our second car back into the mix- in order to avoid a lot of the chaos which has ensued from having several
kids working side jobs or taking classes in the evening.

Today our family chores focused on caring for our vehicles. During the week, despite my best
efforts, our van quickly begins to look like a landfill (or a food bank), with ample amounts of food particles on the floor to feed a third-world country, and enough trash to load up a full-size recycle bin. So, this afternoon, Tom and I drove the van and car to an inexpensive car wash in nearby Bethel Park, Pennsylvania. We divided our family in half, with two children and one adult working on each vehicle. The vacuums are free, which saves us a ton of money. We split the tasks of
floors/seats, using Armor All on the non-fabric surfaces, and spraying/wiping the glass with Windex. As a treat, after about an hour, we drove through the car wash, which is only $3.00. Thankfully, I remembered to put up the driver's side window this time!

Working together in a directed fashion has helped to improve the attitudes of the workers in my home and having a clean van to drive improves my mental clarity as well. And, Lord knows, if it improves my mental clarity- its worth it!

**to read other writing on the subject of house cleaning and family organization, check out these other All In A Day bloggers:

1. Brooke Woody 3. Nicole
2. Nicole

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Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States
Forty-three year-old, mother and staunch advocate of four young children, passionate warrior of truth and self, finding the soul in each day, sharing my struggles and triumphs as I live them. Mostly I do this for me, so my thoughts don't race as much at night as they used to. But I also give this to those of you who need to know, in any or every way, that you are not alone.

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