Wednesday, October 24, 2012

On houses and cleaning them

I've been browsing Angie's List frequently these past few months, getting ready for our big house remodel project.  (Did I forget to tell you?  WE OWN A NEW HOUSE!)

It is more than half as big again as our current condo, and it has three bedrooms.  I can't tell you how excited I am to not share a bedroom with a child...soon, very soon! :)  (First we have to fix it up.  So "soon" will probably be 2-3 months.  But still!)

But back to what I meant to write about.  In browsing Angie's List, I found an amazing deal for 3 hours of deep housecleaning.  I had been feeling so overwhelmed, and on top of it all had worked a 3 day birth (and thus had some extra money in the budget) so I bought it.  Monday morning a team of lovely women came to my house, asked a couple of questions, and got to work.  I took the boys to McDonald's and the park and came back three hours later.

My house?  It SPARKLED.  The place was spotless.  When they said "deep cleaning", they meant it...they had cleaned the baseboards, people.  And the overhead fan.  And the bathtub!  My stove, which used to have black crud crusted around the burner I use most, looks almost new.  They even stripped the beds and put fresh sheets on them. 

I feel like a heavy burden that I didn't even know I was carrying has suddenly disappeared.  I love living in a clean house.  Everything seems easier!  This morning after we finished school, I got out my old set of chore cards and actually did six of the "seasonal" cards.  Now my bathroom not only looks clean, it is actually clean inside the cabinets.  You can't see it, but I know it, and that makes a difference to me.  Tomorrow I think I may wash the curtains.  :)

So to any other moms who have been feeling dragged down and unable to get ahead: if you can afford it, hire a house cleaner.  It isn't just for super rich folks...and it is totally, totally worth it.

Monday, October 15, 2012

The One Thing with SarahMarie

Life has been just about as busy and stressful here lately as I can ever remember it being.  I am homeschooling the boys, which adds a couple of extra hours of work to our list of "daily expectations" (that is without considering fussing/whining/complaining time).  I'm continuing work as a doula, which brings me joy but also entails a good number of evenings away at work.  And of course once or twice a month everything gets dropped while I attend a birth.  We're in the process of buying a house - I have never read, signed, scanned and emailed so many pieces of paper in my life.  Escrow was supposed to close last week but...we're still working on it.  I was in a car accident a little over a week ago and got a bad enough case of whiplash to need to see the chiropractor 2-3 times each week.  Ouch.  Next month Father David is retiring and I'm helping organize the creation of a memory book for him.  It is a grand project and will be spectacular when it is finished, but oh my, the emails!  The phone calls!  The cutting and pasting (both digital and physical)!  Then we're involved in a church plant and I am the new liturgist and choir director (oh joy! oh terror!)  And believe it or not, my boys all seem to think they should still get fed at regular intervals and have clean clothes to wear!  I know, I think they're quite unreasonable too.

So when SarahMarie asked me to participate in her "The One Thing" link up, my initial response (in her comment section) was this:
I probably ought to join in on this, but I have so many dang THINGS TO DO that it sounds almost laughably impossible. . . maybe I will get a large box of chocolates, curl up on the couch, and read about your accomplishments instead. That sounds far more achievable. can that be my one thing?
 And I still feel that way.  Only maybe not so gently stated.  Perhaps something more like "I HAVE TOO MANY THINGS TO DO AND TOO MANY PEOPLE WHO NEED ME AND I'M GOING TO CRY IF ANYONE ASKS ME TO DO ANYTHING ELSE!"

So you know what?  I did one thing last week.  And since I'm totally not kidding about the insane quantity of things that I must do, I'm going to be proud of that one thing for the week.  Actually two things, since I'm pretty sure blogging about it should count. :) 

Sarah, you're right that it helps.  Every time I look at my counter with it's pretty fall decorations, it makes me smile.  Thank you for the nudge to keep trying for beauty and small accomplishments in my life.