shot of sass, served on (n)ice

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Disgust-Driven, Strictly As-Needed Cleaning

magnetI know you’re dying to know how often Pen, the founder and Manager of a busy company, orders her staff to do the following.

Vacuum: I kind of hate vacuuming, although lately I’ve been trying to look at it as a meditative practice. It’s not really working out. Mainly because of the Canine Staff and their excessive shedding problem, our house has to be vacuumed about once a week. Usually, J.Lo does it on Sundays, mainly because he is faster at it. The children hate the vacuum, screaming, crying, and slamming doors in fright whenever it’s brought out, making it kind of an ordeal. Whatever. It gets done.

Clean toilets: Just like Ruby, ideally once a week, but let’s be honest. It’s when I can’t stand looking at the filth anymore. Living by the beach, our bathroom filth usually involves mold.

Clean bathtubs: As needed, like when it’s visibly, tangibly dirty and I can no longer avert my eyes or ignore the grit under my feet.

Clean sinks (bathroom/kitchen): As needed, like when my annoyance for toothpaste and hard water buildup outweighs my laziness. Half of the kitchen sink is covered by a drainer for clean, already-washed dishes, but every once in awhile, its own filth catches my eye and I have to clean it. Which grosses me out, really, because it’s CLEAN dishes hanging out in there. Why so dirty? P.S. I sprinkle table salt on the kitchen sinks and scrub with water. It works well.

Clean mirrors: I clean the bathroom mirror whenever I clean the sink. All other mirrors, when I dust the room they are in, which you will soon see is almost never.

Clean out the microwave: When I put something in there to microwave and the plate/cup/whatever comes back in my hand greasy. Usually from bacon on Sundays. Ew. Or whenever I’ve defrosted something saucy, and it’s splattered, and I can’t stand looking at it anymore

Clean the oven/stovetop: Eh. I do wipe it down after cooking usually, which is almost daily. Absolutely if something has been fried, because there will be oil splatters. But, we have a flat cook top, and it will never, ever be as clean as the flat cook tops they show in the kitchens on House Hunters. (A lot of houses on House Hunters have our stove, strangely.) I hear that if anything sugary boils over and then cooks on there, you’re pretty much doomed to live with it forever.

Clean the counters: Also like Ruby, pretty much every day. I’m proud of our countertops, which are black granite tile, and I like to keep them shiny.

Clean windows: Yeah, like never. My mom mentions the need every now and then, and one time we cleaned them all for the outside. The blue moon shone that night. In the meanwhile, spiders spin webs and catch bugs in the space between our kitchen window and outdoor screen. That’s nature, kids!

Mop floors: It’s a semi-annual occasion. In-between, addressing food spills, that’s what dogs are for.

Change the sheets on the bed: Either when one of the children leaks pee on them, which happens more often then I’d like, or when I think huh, I don’t remember the last time these were changed, and I should probably do it soon before we encourage bed bugs to take up residence here.

Change out towels: Fairly regularly. I do not like smelly towels, either.

Dust: I really hate dusting, always have, always will. Lately my three-year-old has remarked, “This is dusty.” Yesssss, I know. It’s on the to-do list. For tomorrow.

Laundry: As needed. Which is a LOT!

Load/unload dishwasher: Ugh, another hated chore! I don’t even know why, since it takes all of three minutes! That’s the unloading. Loading, I do quite often, as I don’t mind washing the dishes, really. It makes me feel like, at least something is clean, neat and organized. Between that and the countertops, there is an eye to this hurricane.

Other? I take out the trash when it smells or is overfilled. I clean the fish tank when the water level has evaporated so much that the filter is louder than the TV, which I can’t stand. I put out a small bowl of vinegar after we’ve cooked fish or burned something, to absorb the odor quickly. Overall, I would say our house is relatively neat and organized, of which I’m proud, but it’s not necessarily scrubbed and gleaming. Currently, I can blame my company of small children on this fact, but it’s not like it was any different before I had kids. I kind of wish I kept things sparkling, but the amount of time and effort required? I’d like to think I’ve got better things to do, even if that’s not necessarily true. Also, I don’t mind the house looking lived-in, as opposed to sterile… Besides which, if I did clean a whole bunch, I’d be sorely disappointed within minutes, since I run a household of mess-makers. Kids and dogs? Please.

Justifying too much? I thought so. All right. I’m out.

2 tips left at the bar:

Ruby said...

A woman after my own heart! I prefer the term 'lived in' to describe my house as well. (My sister's house is always, always super clean and once I asked her what it was like to live in a museum. Because I will never, ever know.)

penelope said...

Ha ha ha! I made the museum comment to my mom once as a teenager, and she still brings it up. Apparently, it was quite insulting.