34/100 Days of I Believe

{in contrast to yesterday,}

I believe in cleaning up the kitchen at the end of the night. This one comes from my dear Aunt Paula, and it was learned in my late twenties after I had already become a mother. A little bit of it comes from my friend Susan, too. Credit where credit is due.

It’s hard to remember that it wasn’t always this way, because it’s been years since I’ve done it, but I used to go to bed with dishes in the sink. I’m almost (but not quite) laughing at myself here because this almost (but not quite) sounds ridiculous. I know lots of people go to bed with dishes in the sink, and their lives are perfectly fine and happy and maybe this seems on the edge of insanity, but cleaning the kitchen at the end of the night is a little gift to my tomorrow self.

It’s simple, really.

Wash the dishes, wipe the counters, put away the detritus of the day before going to bed. My friend Susan calls it “making night,” my Aunt Paula didn’t have a name for it but the principle is the same - leave the kitchen in the state you want to find it in the morning. Give yourself the gift of a blank slate, a fresh start, a jump on the day.

Sometimes I’m really tired at the end of the evening and the last thing I want to do is clean anything, but I make myself do it anyway because it means that I walk into a tidy kitchen in the morning (outer order blah blah broken record), that I start the day putting away last night’s clean dishes and I have an empty sink, drying rack, dishwasher to work with. It makes the morning a little easier, which makes it worth the effort. It’s a gift to my tomorrow self.