It's been awhile since I even had the energy to think about this, but I'm obviously feeling at least well enough now to think I can get the house looking better, so I'm going to try and get back into the habit of focusing Mondays on making my home a haven.
The most amazingly effective trick I've discovered over the past couple of weeks is really only amazing in it's obviousness. Work first. What I mean by that is I only have so much energy. I need to spend it wisely, and pick the highest priority things and do them whenever I have any energy. Later, if I have more, I can do more.
In practice, where this has been most useful is on Saturdays. I never used to like to do lots of housework on the weekend, preferring to do as much as possible during the week, leaving Saturday open for fun stuff or running errands with L, etc. (I never really considered running errands with L to be work in the same way, so that didn't bother me). Sundays were always held open from that sort of thing; not a legalistic Sabbath, but trying to make the day special.
But now, I don't have anywhere near enough energy to accomplish much when I get home from work during the week. I've got to be more productive on Saturdays. And the best way for me to be productive is to not allow myself to get sidetracked by more fun stuff, but to concentrate on doing what needs to be done.
I know, it's an obvious thing, and people who are more naturally organized and all that are probably shaking their heads at my ignorance that this kind of thing makes a difference. But it's not just the time spent on other things that seems to cause the issue for me - if I sit down for an hour to read, I'm that much less likely to do anything more productive even after the hour is up. I'm not sure why that is, but it seems to put me into a different mindset, and it's hard to get out of it and focus on what needs to be done.
So I've been not allowing myself to pick up a book until Saturday evening (or late afternoon at least) when I've gotten done what I need to for the day. I do briefly check email that morning, but don't spend lots of time on the internet either.
Someday perhaps I'd have the self-discipline to not have to be so strict with myself, but for now, this is what I'm needing to do to ensure that I keep up with what has to be done.
*Checking my blog archives, I see that the last Homemaking post for me was just before leaving town in October. It was right after returning from that trip that I got the positive pregnancy test result, so it's not just my imagination that it's been awhile, but I guess I do have an understandable reason for it.