I'm a homebody. I love putzing around in my pajamas, rereading old decorating magazines. Planning my next purchase. But I'm also a busy mother of two extremely active anklebiters, which means my house isn't always company ready.
My neighborhood is a mixed bag of ages. We've got some young families, but a few folks have grown kids that are long out of the house. These neighbors like to spring me with surprise attacks/visits. My doorbell will suddenly ring, and I'm in my Costco pajamas, coffee cup in hand- and I will glance over and see the breakfast dishes still in the sink, laundry in mid-folding on the dog chewed couch, recycling that hasn't been taken out. And the daily dose of Barbies, crayons, stuffed animals and other toddler crap that explodes in my house on a regular basis.
My Mom always taught me that if you could get the following things done each day, your house may not be company ready, but you won't be swallowed by mess. Not to get all flylady on you or anything, but they are:
1. Run the dishwasher before you go to bed and empty it first thing in the morning.
2. Make your bed. Your room can be a disaster but if the bed is made? It looks neat.
3. Wipe down the bathrooms.
4. Wash, dry, fold and put away one load of laundry each day.
Most days, this gets done. But, honestly? I've come up with a word that best describes my housekeeping style.
It's called "The Rally."
At five o'clock, I scurry around, yelling like a Polish washwoman, trying to undo a day's worth of mess in 60 minutes. My kids dread five o'clock. It's the witching hour when their mother morphs into a lunatic armed with Lysol wipes and empty threats. One hour later, the house looks presentable. Dinner gets started, my husband arrives home, and life is good.
Except for the day he came home early.
His eyes literally bugged out of his head, and if I remember correctly? He thought we got robbed.
The Rally. Right, wrong or indifferent, it works.
If you come home after six.