Sunday, July 14, 2013

Housekeeper of the Year Award

A while back, Reed asked me "Why is that room so clean?" I wasn't sure what he was talking about, so I asked him which room. "That closet thing where you and Dad get dressed."  I had gotten a wild hair and deep-cleaned our walk-in closet. I told him as much. His reply is a sad commentary on my housekeeping habits. "Why? Is someone coming over?"

Another afternoon I found out at work that a lady would be stopping by shortly after school to pick something up. She's super-organized, always put together, and known for being opinionated. Needless to stay, I rushed home from school and frantically started cleaning. I pressed the boys into service too. When Calvin asked why he had to pick up, I told him that someone was coming over and we didn't want her to think we (read: me) were sloppy. "Well, sooo! It's OUR house!"

Of course I didn't tell him so, but he was right. Why do I insist on putting up a front? If you come to my house and I know about it at least 24 hours in advance, I will hide our clutter, scrub the toilets, and probably freak out on my family seven or eight times before your arrival for taking off their shoes by the door or, God forbid, playing with ugly toys. My house will probably look pretty clean - or at least neat. But that is not how we live. And thank goodness - because getting it clean --and keeping it there is really stressful.

We had a party at our house just a week ago. I spent literally an entire week deep-cleaning my house. I cleaned one room per day and washed windows, dusted the red lantern balls in Max's bedroom, vacuumed book covers, crazy stuff like that. And why? Because our friends and family are judgemental of dusty balls? Nope. Because I already wanted to do that stuff and the party was a good excuse to get my rear in gear? Sorta. But mostly, there's really no good reason. I just got it in my mind that this party was an occasion for perfection.

I've been meaning to invite a friend over this summer. I really wanted to do it the week before our party, but I just "couldn't spare the time" cleaning. How ridiculous is that?! And then, the next week  we had surprise guests one evening. I was totally frazzled for the first few minutes (I had been sacked out on the couch and the house was a PIT!) But you know what? Once I got over it, we had a great time. And it was a whole lot more relaxing than if they had called ahead and I felt the need to frantically run around the house and hide/scrub/spot vacuum. It taught me a lesson God and my husband and have been trying to teach me for years: people are more important than (false) perfection.

So in the interest of full disclosure, I'm doing something I never thought I would do... Posting unstaged pictures of my house right now- and sharing this post on facebook to my 308 nearest and dearest. Keep in mind it was SPOTLESS only eight days ago.

One long, long week ago

Don't judge. Things can go downhill pretty fast around here...


There you have it. The real us. Kinda embarrassing for a frustrated perfectionist, but it is what it is. And even though most of the mess is grown up's stuff, I can still pin it on these guys one way or another. I mean, who can clean when this ruckus is going on?

And they're so totally worth it! So, if you come over and it looks like this, maybe you can imagine I was a really great mommy recently. And if it's really clean, please don't ask my kids how their day has been. Or open any closets...

1 comment:

Deborah Raney said...

LOL! I LOVE it! And boy did that bring back memories. That was always you kids's first question if I asked you to clean something "Why? Who's coming over?"

Not sure I would have had the guts to post a pic of our messes if there'd been such a thing as facebook back then, but boy how freeing that is! (And for the record, I always think your house looks great, even after we've been there for several days and things aren't spotless the way they usually are when we first get there.)

Another little secret: Dad and I have learned to tidy up before all the family comes, and save the deep cleaning for after y'all leave. LOL!

Love you!!