Most people wouldn't realize it, but I actually have my birth clients communicate very meticulously with me through out their 3rd trimester leading into the beginning stages of labor, called early labor.
When I meet a birth family for the first time, I reassure them that if they contact me to notify me that early labor might be happening, I won't leave my house and jet straight for them. (I like to play an unobtrusive role in my clients birth stories and wait until they are in the active stages of labor, when things are more intense). But when my clients notify me that they think labor may have started, it does afford me is the opportunity to plan my family's life out for the next 24 - 48 hours while I am away. I could potentially be away from my family and with my birth client anywhere from three to ten hours, and traveling, and I like to be prepared.
Usually this is what our kitchen counter looks like, when my client has a slower paced labor and I have a heads up that sometime in the next day or two, I will be needed.
Both of my girls, ages 5 and 2, go to preschool five days a week. And although I have an amazing partner who wears both mom and dad hats when I am away from home, I can't help but give him a hand, throwing in what I know to be the girls favorite snacks throughout the day at school.
The fact of the matter is, our house is never squeaky clean.
I think I managed to get things tidied up in time for my daughters 5th birthday, but usually, theres piles of laundry here and there, and unwashed tupperware containers from yesterdays lunches.
But one thing is for sure, I always always make sure we are stocked to the brim with extras of everything, in case we run out and I am not at home, our girls will always have their go - to's on hand.
I figured out very early on as a mom, that everyone is happy to help as long as they are appreciated.
That includes partners and spouses too.
They could use a little nudge in the right direction through appreciate of their hard work.