Not everyone needs a spic & span house. Admittedly, I prefer things to be in their proper place – in order (but not alphabetical) and appearing well-organized. I do not put my emphasis on clean, just uncluttered. My specialty is taking a messy area and rearranging it enough that if someone (maybe even a neat freak) looks at it, his heart would not start to palpitate. My knack for this ability has earned me the nickname “shit shifter”. I believe it to be a loving, non – offensive moniker, since it was bestowed upon me by my Prince. Speaking of my groom… HE IS A CLEANER. The man scrubs floors and wipes down walls to RELAX. This used to bother me, being a stay at home Mom. He’d walk in the door after work and grab the broom and sweep the kitchen and I immediately assumed that this was his way of clueing me in that I wasn’t doing my job well enough. As if keeping the four kids (ages infant through 7 years) fed, clothed, and – ahem – ALIVE, wasn’t ENOUGH?!
As soon as I figured out that he LIKED to clean and it wasn’t some “passive – aggressive, make the desperate housewife angry” ploy – I was fine with it. Actually, I decided that it was simply perfect, since I liked to straighten and he liked to sanitize… WIN/WIN! As long as we both knew our jobs and worked together, everything should be just fine. Should be. We do have our moments, like when he decides to de-clutter, and loses things – MY things. Or when I decide to clean the countertops with a spray that contains bleach and lean into it, ruining my favorite shirt in the process. I’m not saying that I’m incompetent in the cleaning department, but I do leave the hard stuff for the expert.
I think it really falls on the husband and wife to determine how they will “run the house”. After discussing preferences, skill sets and schedule availability, it should be rather “easy” to determine who does what. We have a few things that are clear-cut in our house. ME – laundry, party planning, gift buying and taking the kids to all of their events. HIM – vacation planning, paying the bills and unplugging the toilet. Sorry, but the toilet is a Man’s job – unless he’s out of town for work . Then, it’s all me . Gag. Teamwork is the key and flexibility is a must. Steve easily throws in a few loads of laundry at the risk we might all be naked the next day, and I will write a few checks and send them off if need be. Working together is crucial in this business of happily ever after !
Back to the point of this little post . As long as YOU and your spouse are satisfied with the way your house looks – than you’re golden. Don’t worry about what the magazines suggest, what your Mother in Law does or what you just saw on The View. Strive for presentable, not perfection . Perfection is over-rated, anyways (at least I HOPE IT IS). Split the work between all occupants of the house – remember, “Many hands make light work”. Enjoy your home and your time spent there with those that you love. And watch out for bleach – it’s no joke.