No Housework Day (It’s a Thing!)

Thanks to social media, my life is just one constant celebration. That’s because apparently there is a day for everything. Do you love coffee? International Coffee Day is for you. How about ice cream? You’re in luck, because International Ice Cream Day has been around since President Reagan made it a thing in 1984. And if, like me, you have a mountain of dirty laundry staring you down today, have I got a celebration for you. April 7th is No Housework Day!

I know what you’re thinking. Probably what I was thinking – there’s no such thing as a no housework day. Even on days I declare war on the continuous tyranny of the urgent, the urgent wins: children need to be clothed, my family needs to be fed, and babies will surely choke on the tiny LEGOs that magically appear in every nook and cranny (and I mean every). So what’s a mother to do?

Well, I believe in celebrating the big, the small, and everything in between, and let me tell you – No Housework Day is no exception! If my kids get a week-long celebration for their birthdays (I’m sorry future in-law children of mine. It’s just this thing we do.), then this mom can get one day out of the whole year to take a break from the housework. If you’re wondering how to make this work, wonder no more. Here is your guide to a successful No Housework Day 2017!

First of all, prepare. I know. Boring. This first step does not sound fun. But if there’s one thing we mamas have mastered, it’s being prepared. You never know when the baby is going to soil his onesie, the toddler is going to need a snack, or the big kid is going to need a band-aid. And that’s nothing. If we can prepare for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Birthday Week, then we can prepare for No Housework Day! It’s really not that hard. Make sure everyone has clean clothes and lay them out the night before. Have the big kids pick up their beloved LEGOs (even the ones they’re “still playing with”). Pack simple lunches in advance. Maybe even buy paper plates for this special occasion. April 7th is No Housework Day, and if we mothers don’t honor it, who will?

Next? Think outside the box. Maybe No Housework Day can be about more than just not doing housework. Maybe it can be a day in which you give your housework to someone else. I mean – that huge mountain of laundry we talked about? (I know it’s not just me.) You can pay someone to do that for you. And even if you can’t afford it regularly, it’s a fairly inexpensive present to give to yourself on No Housework Day. Here’s what to do: go to your neighborhood In the Bag Laundry Cleaners, and pick up one of their special, magical bags. Then go home and stuff that thing full – trust me, speaking from experience, it fits a lot of laundry! Next, drive that big bag of dirty laundry back to In the Bag and hand it to the nice person behind the counter. In just a couple days, you can return and pick up that massive, stuffed bag, but this time it will be filled to the brim with clean, folded laundry. So, basically you get a day off and your laundry gets done anyway. Win-win! You can do this in other areas too. 

Hire someone to clean the house so you don’t have to feel that pressure. Order pizza or pick up take out for dinner. If you’re one of those controlling vigilant people who like things in order and can’t relax in the middle of chaos, No Housework Day is still for you. Just delegate. It’s one day out of the whole year, and you deserve it.

Finally, consider leaving the house. The logic behind this is, if you’re not there, you will not give into the temptation to pick up the broom or wipe down the bathroom. Also, your children will be removed from the vicinity so they will not be able to make a mess! Consider a mini-adventure to the Sedgwick County Zoo, a walk around the river under the Keeper of the Plains, or, my favorite, a stroll through the Botanica Gardens. If the weather is bad, head to the Exploration Place or the Wichita Art Museum. No Housework Day is an opportunity to look into your children’s eyes when they talk and enjoy them without thinking of your to-do list. And if you don’t have kids with you during the day? Grab a friend for coffee, or do something, in the words of my daughter when she was three, all by your “ownself”. I know it sounds decadent, but you do housework every other day of the year. This is a day you have a valid excuse to spend time with your kids in a meaningful way, invest in your friendships, and restore your own soul.

All around you, in every moment, the world is offering a feast for our senses. How often do we miss that feast because we are too focused on dust bunnies and cheerios on the floor? I can only answer that question for me, but my answer is too often. The dusting and vacuuming can wait until April 8th. April 7th is No Housework Day, and at least this mama is going to celebrate!

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