Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Housework - Ho hum.

Noble Savage posted recently about the not-so-joys of keeping house. It seems to have touched a lot of us as we're all posting about it. I have a fairly large house, on four floors, which makes it seem even bigger - or at least more of a challenge, in an Everest kind of way. If something needs to go "upstairs" it tends to sit at the bottom of one flight (in a nice little two-storey basket) for about two weeks until someone needs it. I have a laundry room which is near the teens' bedrooms but not really near mine or the Little Guy's, which inevitably means that his clothes stay on top of the dryer and are pulled as needed, without ever reaching his closet.

The main reason for our mess (I have convinced myself) is that we moved into this house when the LG was 5 months old. Gifting my 7 and 10 year olds with a new baby brother and a new house was turbulent, so I focused my energies on keeping their little lives as constant as possible. Their bedrooms were furnished and organised before I had even unpacked my Tupperware. Oh and I also got my publishing contract about a month after we moved, giving me about a three weeks to dot all the t's and cross all the i's (or was that vice versa?). It's not as idyllic as it sounds writing your break-out book with a baby on your lap, believe me.

Needless to say I was a bit of a busy bee, and stupidly didn't get myself any decent help in the form of babysitting or cleaning. As some of you will recall, it wasn't until last September that I had all day free - I had had a small child in the house for some or all of the day for 16 consecutive years. What was I going to do with my time?? Well, start up a charitable organisation for one, which is like a part time (very rewarding) job.

Almost 7 years later, there are still two boxes of "stuff" in my guest room closet. Common sense tells me that if we haven't opened them in all that time, they should go - but they're photo albums. Obviously I should scan them all and get rid of the now-fading photos, but that takes time. Which I don't have.

In my case, although I hate most housework, I only have myself to blame. I have the means to employ help yet I don't. It's a lot of work telling someone what to do and then fuming when they go off and do their own thing anyway. "It's quicker to do it myself", is a phrase I hear often, at least in my head.

My home runs like clockwork, most of the time. There are dings in walls which need some attention, door knobs that come off in your hand (usually when you're in the loo) and a front garden that needs a big dose of TLC. However, I'm chilling as I get older and concentrating my efforts on more worthy causes,(see photo). As for the housework,  my mantra has become "I'm sorry but I wasn't put on this earth to slave after people (even if they were partly created by me)".

I was in fact, born to live on a warm, beach somewhere remote but sophisticated. It would appear the memo got lost somewhere along the line.



  1. Hah - love this. Agree with you life is too short to worry about housework, but that doesn't stop us worrying. I grit my teeth and try to keep on top of it and the idea of a cleaner seems so self-indulgent. Somehow the cost translates to a new pair of shoes and that puts me off, too! Like you, I'm convinced I was meant for more leisurely things. See you on the beach! X

  2. Oh yes, another one for the beach! I do have a cleaner, though just once a fortnight. It's not much but it helps keep my sanity more or less intact. Ish.

  3. I think my name was on that memo too. i have become much the same over the last 12 months, I care less about the mess and the things that need doing. sometimes i do worry that people think I'm a complete slob as friends say things like 'got to go now, i've got to do the ironing' or 'i can't come tomorrow because i'm cleaning'. seriously, do people really run their lives around keeping their house clean? And then I remember that i used t do that too. not sure if it's a good thing or not, this new attitude of mine.

  4. Sounds like you have yr priorities absolutely right:o)

  5. Your priorities are very similar to mine. Hang the housework ....... you have to find pleasure where you can. When it gets to a certain state then I have a blitz, but I do indulge myself with things I like doing & concentrate on them.

    Nuts in May.

  6. Housework? What is that like ironing? No don't do either unless forced....or my mum's coming to stay!

  7. I hate housework too. That is why I DO have a cleaner. It is the best money ever spent: my biggest luxury. I'd rather spend the money on that than expensive clothes or shoes as it means I never have to scrub the bath or vaccum. (She also does the ironing too - hurrah).

  8. My cleaner has been away lambing( peril of living in the Lake District) for three weeks. Three weeks of complete hell. I pay for cleaning, gardening, ironing... anything to see the back of the whole damned lot.And I am a better human being for it


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