Friday, September 12, 2008

Want to be a Company Girl?

In honor of the first "Company Girl Coffee" meme, I'd like to share one of my earlier experiences with trying to tame the clutter & make my home into the Sanctuary we all need.
From July 2006
"How to Spend a Sunday Afternoon"
I am not a Domestic Diva. I do not possess even a passing resemblance to a Neatnik. For the most part, dust & I peacefully co-exist. Don’t get me wrong- my house is clean; it’s simply messy. Not on the scale of “Clean House” chaotic- just cluttered, rumpled & lived-in. All of which makes yesterday afternoon stand out as somewhat unusual.

One of the tenets of Simple Abundance is Order, obviously one I openly struggle with. Since I’m serious about living an authentic, peaceful life, I’ve been convicted to eliminate the clutter in my home. I made a checklist of things I’ve put off doing for years & were REALLY bugging me. I made a good start while I was on medical leave for 8 weeks after my surgery. Well, actually the boys made a good start; I was suppose to be taking it easy, so every time I’d see something that needed done (dust on the ceiling fan, dirty curtains, cobwebs in the corners, etc) I’d call Chris or Sam & they would clean it while I supervised. When I went back to work the end of April, I let things slide a little, but I keep working on the list. I even cleaned some bookshelves & got rid of a lot of books- most were donated to the library, but quite a few were pitched out- Hey! Don’t yell at me, unless you want a 12-year-old set of Principles of Accounting or Survey of Calculus for Business!!

Which brings us to Sunday afternoon. Thru a blogging friend Cara, I learned about FlyLady, & I’ve been working thru my baby steps. One of my assignments for the day was to clean off one my Hot Spots- areas that seem to collect crap. Mine is the dining room table. I walked in after church, ready to BBQ for lunch, & saw the standard mess on the table. Being a good Fly Baby, I put things where they belonged, until I came to a covered aluminum cake pan left over from Friday potluck at work. I decided to put it on top of the fridge until I needed it next week. There’s no room, so I pull out the step stool to see what I can get rid of or rearrange. All I can say is YUCK!!! (Before you judge- look at the top of YOUR fridge!)

Now begins a classic case of “One Thing Leads To Another”- involving the whole family. Before I can put anything new up there, I need to clean off the dust & trash- I hand each thing to Sam to wash off & start dumping stuff into the trashcan. A bread wrapper (with moldy bread in it) falls behind the fridge, so I call Chris to pull it away from the wall. This reveals a pile of cat toys, macaroni, & giant dust bunnies, not to mention the cobwebs on the walls. So out come the vacuum & the mop- Sam gets stuffed back there to scrub the floor, while I spray Orange Glo on one & all. Meanwhile, Chris scours the walls, and then decides to do the surrounding cabinets as well. I finish cleaning the ENTIRE outside of the fridge & move on to the inside of the doors, the hinges & seals- well, if the outside is clean, so should the inside! We finally finish & push the fridge back & see the floor in now disgusting. So, Sam goes outside to fill the mop bucket, whilst I sweep the floor. Now, the kitchen & laundry room are right next to each other, so I start sweeping in there- hey may as well do both rooms now! That’s when I notice the amount of grunge under the washer & dryer. You know, if it’s clean under the fridge… Chris gets out his tools, & the machines are moved out. Back goes Sam with vacuum & mop, while Chris cleans the shelves above & I scrub the appliances themselves- I mean, it’s just bad karma to wash clothes in a dirty-looking washing machine. That task completed, Sam can now mop the floor… but lets just scrub out the corners real well first, & maybe the floorboards, oh, & the lower part of the walls & the doorjambs of course, which means the doors need to be wiped down, too. At last, we all leave the kitchen 2 hours later to let the floors dry… & go out for hamburgers!


Jane-Fay said...

Holy Flycrap! You are my hero. Gail has been trying to get me hooked up with the flylady. But I think you have showed me that it's just too dangerous. Besides, the chances of me finding two willing conspirators like you have are... basically nil.
But... hmmm... wasn't it you that was telling me just the other week not to worry about the dust?

mitchowl said...

That is one mighty scary sequence of events! lol
I have been trying to do the same, ever since I read Simple Abundance. I'm still making baby step progress. Nothing like your giant leap, but I'll get there.

Stacy said...

Good for you Meg! I had the same thing happen to me a few weeks ago in the kitchen. One thing led to another and I now have a top of my fridge. The worst part of my kitchen was the floor and wall behind the garbage can. GROSS! But sparkling now.

Rachel Anne said...

I started to comment yesterday and got interrupted...big surprise.

I dread pulling my fridge out but know it needs to be done. Same with washer and dryer, but I WILL do those appliances soon because I need a plumber to fix something and I refuse to be humiliated. Great motivation!

You've got great helpers...can I borrow them?

Thanks for linking in to the meme! This was so FUN!!

Shannon said...

This totally sounds like something that would happen at my house. Yeah for you for making such progress!

Have a wonderful Sunday! :)

Fishy Girl said...

Wow!! Do you want to come to my house and help me? I could use some help! You are my newest hero.

Mrs. Brownstone @ XBOX Wife said...

That's awesome! I bookmarked this for motivation this week!! I spent my Sunday afternoon dozing on the sofa. :(

cara said...

You are doing flylady!!!! Pretty awesome! I just so happened to check your blog today and saw my name listed. :) I haven't been on my blog in too long but I did do one small update yesterday. I hope things have been good with you. Cara

cara said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

I have some dust bunny friends that would be lost without me! Sometimes we chat over coffee or tea. Really! They are the most interesting of sorts. Much nicer than the dust bears or the cob webs.
Loved the felt hat! Saw a blog the other day called the Happy Hooker or something like that (it was one of those double snicker things cause she was into pirates AND knitting)... anyway, thought of you, so I stopped by.
Happy belated anniversary. My Dear Heart and I just celebrated 15 years (holy cow, where'd that come from?).
An 18 year old... LWC? *gasp*
Tammy :):):)

a painter said...

Thanks for visiting my blog.

I tried the Fly Lady a few years ago and still consider it a successful endeavor...though anyone can back slide.....any time!

I am chuckling at your description of your afternoon. How many of us have been there? No wonder we hate to start a project! It is like opening a can of worms!