The Great Cleanup

I don’t keep a clean house. Truly. Not even close. Of all of my associates who read this blog, I believe Anna is the only one who has only been subjected to the full mess because, honestly, I didn’t clean before she came (sorry Anna).

I don’t clean. I don’t dust, pretty much ever. I don’t vacuum, unless until it becomes unbearable. I’m a working professional who works full time for a corporation and has two home businesses on the side, plus two dogs and a husband to take care of contend with. And don’t underestimate the neediness factor of two tiny dogs. They may be cute and sweet, but they are also spoiled and demanding. In fact, they are probably the only reason that certain areas of carpet get cleaned on any sort of regular basis. Oh, and of course, there’s sailing season. During which nearly every weekend that it’s not raining and we don’t have to work is occupied. Which means that spring, summer and half of the fall weekends are booked up.

Bottom line: I have no time to take care of myself. I certainly don’t have time for my house.

I only make time to clean before company arrives. Which happens about once a quarter. And then, it’s astounding how much cleaning one can accomplish in two days. Of course, all personal needs (and a certain amount of sleep) fall by the wayside during those two days, but still. It’s the only time that my house becomes even reasonably presentable. And it’s a stretch to call it that. And that’s only the rooms that visitors see. I keep my craft room pretty neat, actually, because it’s a very small room that is packed with craft supplies and musical instruments. I pretty much have to pick up in there or I can’t walk. And it has gotten to that point before. But our bedroom and even our bathroom? Neglected. There’s room to walk in the bedroom, but there’s baskets of unattended clean laundry in the bedroom and the closet floor is littered with, usually large, piles of dirty clothes. My bathtub hasn’t been used in probably a year, which is a sin because it’s a Jacuzzi tub. The countertops could really use a scrub down. And other assorted cleaning issues that I won’t bother to list. And the computer room pretty much looks like a bomb of technology has gone off in it.

But ho, when company comes, the carpets get vacuumed, the floors get mopped, some of the clutter gets picked up, the kitchen island gets cleared off, the stovetop gets scrubbed, including burners, drip pans and everything underneath, as does the inside of the microwave, the main bathroom gets scrubbed spotless, the spare bedroom becomes magically organized and usable (except for my desk area), etc. The Christmas decorations that are still boxed up and sitting in my little library are taken up to the attic, finally. The Christmas cookie tins are wiped out and put away. Obviously, the last great cleanup occurred right before Christmas.

There’s still dust. And a good bit of clutter. Because, let’s face it, we have far too much crap and not even close to enough storage spaces for it all. My ONS takes up part of my dining room and we have a room full of servers and networking equipment in the basement for the web business. It’s ridiculous.

This year’s challenge will be to take care of the yard. All of the bushes planted by the builder need to be ripped out and replaced, something needs to be done to inhibit the growth of the accursed thistle that is everywhere, my butterfly bushes in the front have taken heavy damage from all of the snow and wind, so they need to be replaced. The garden area that went completely unused last year and so is full of weeds and the area around it that didn’t get mowed at all last year all need to be cleared. We have ruts to fill, drainage to reroute, grass seed to be planted and my clematis trellis to be ripped down the rest of the way (Mother Nature took care of half of it and a good chunk of the other half) and replaced so that I can replant my beloved clematis. Oh, and we have to dig up the yard right in front of the house until we find the tank covers for the two septic tanks so that they can be pumped out. We’re way overdue. And there’s the gazebo that we’ve been wanting to put in the natural clearing in the woods in the back (HAH!). I’m seriously thinking of using a good portion of the tax refund money to bring in a landscaper to at least take care of the bushes. I can’t handle the inside of my house; I can barely even think about touching the outside.

So, there it is. My homemaking skills (or severe lack thereof) laid bare. Judge me as you please, but at least the house is at an acceptable state today!

About Jenna Magee

IT professional, needleworker, editor/proofreader, author, singer, musician.
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6 Responses to The Great Cleanup

  1. Diane says:

    I’m right there with you, except it’s three cats and two kids that I contend with inside, and two dogs out. Every so often I get a bee in my bonnet and clean, but I’d much rather spend my time stitching!

  2. Anna says:

    Don’t rip out the butterfly bushes! No! Just cut them down to the ground. They will come back, this year. Promise. Don’t waste money on new ones.

    And you know, they have these people who will come and clean your house for money… 😉

  3. Meari says:

    I’m right there with ya on cleaning. My house is usually presentable, but it definitely looks “lived in”. I don’t mind!

  4. barbara says:

    Housecleaning. Ugh. I’ll do it by surprise, when I least expect it, before I can realize how many zillions of other things I’d much rather be doing. LOL! And outside care? Well, my intentions are great but my follow-through can be a bit spotty, as Niek will tell you. 😉

  5. Christine D says:

    I clean exactly the same way, right down to the two days (or two hours) before company arrives. I have a sign in my kitchen that reads “Sexy women have messy kitchens.” Well my friend, we must be over the top! I have a confession – I leave my vacuum in the front hall closet, so when the door bell rings, it can get pulled out – so it looks like I’m cleaning!

  6. Yep, I’m right there with you, except I don’t have the excuse reason of a husband, kids, OR pets. 😆 I think it gets easy to be more forgiving on tidiness when one lives alone. I give it a really good cleaning when I have friends in from out of town to visit which happens 4 or 5 times per year. The rest of the time, I border on C.H.A.O.S. (can’t have anyone over syndrome). 😛

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