Thursday, November 5, 2009
Do you ever take a step back from your life, look around, and think to yourself "I cannot live like this"?. I don't know what came over me, but today I had one of those moments. Maybe it was the crushed Rice Chex spread out all over the floor (you'd think it was an entire box, I hate chex crumbs), or the sink overflowing with dishes that I could have sworn were finished when I went to bed the night before, but- I snapped. Suddenly everything was overwhelming.
Wednesdays are my laundry days. Wednesdays and Sundays. The one thing that I've always hated the most about our laundry room, is the kitty litter all over the floor. We used to have one of those mats that you put down for kitty to wipe her feet, but it got a one way ticket to the garbage can after the bad cat (who has since run away, thus proving her rebellious attitude. I thought I saw her at Petsmart once, but it wasn't her, I checked for the kink in her tail) mistook it for the actual litter box, five too many times. Is it raining litter in that room, because no matter how many times I sweep up the stray crumbles, and even if the cat hasn't been in there all day long, its there. Litter, all over the floor. Embedded in the bottom of my feet. Its disgusting. When I got pregnant with Charlie, Christopher took over all of the litter box duties. He doesn't have very many specified chores around the house, so that one kinda stayed on his list. Its his job to scoop through it and pick out the clumps, its his job to sweep the floor in the laundry room- all him.
Today when I went into the laundry room, I couldn't take it anymore. The litter poking into the soles of my feet felt like burning spikes stabbing fire into my skin. It made me crazy. I decided the litter box had to be moved, and it needed to be done right then. When I went to lift it, I noticed that it hadn't been cleaned recently. Wait, it hadn't been cleaned in a long time, actually. Wow... had it ever been cleaned? Cue the gagging.
Since I had just put Charlie down for a nap, I flung open the front door, and yelled for Eleanore to get out of the way, "Mama's coming through with a load of crap!". I dropped the fly breeding ground down onto the driveway with a thud, grabbed a brown paper bag (we've got a gazillion of them, I'm using them to make our Christmas wrapping paper this year, save your bags, you can make your own paper too!), and dug in with the equally nauseating scooper. Eleanore had come outside with me, which was fine- until after telling her not to touch any of the litter (you can see whats coming, can't you?), she put both hands flat down into a pile of it that had spilled out of the bag. "No no no, yuck yuck yuck, listen to Mommy, you have to listen to me when I say something to you", I shouted, taking my frustration out on my 3 year old (ok but really, listen to me child, dangit!). I went inside, grabbed the hand sanitizer faster than a Cullen (HAHAHahahah, yes), and then flew back outside before she could wipe a tear from her face (because of course by now she was sobbing).
I went to get the hose, to start attacking the box with soap and a scrubby sponge, but- Oh come on, where in the heck is the hose? I cursed Christopher's name, because seriously, where was the hose, and then went next door to see if I could borrow the neighbors. They didn't answer the door, and I thought about just taking it on the way back to my house, I knew she probably wouldn't care, but I didn't feel quite right about it, so I called her instead. I think I might have woken her up, but this was an emergency. A I-have-to-clean-something-right-now emergency, but an emergency no less.
Just as I was about to squirt a droplet of Dawn into the freshly watered down bacteria pit, Christopher pulled up into the driveway.
"I was actually going to do that tonight", he said.
Do you have the same look on your face that I have on mine right now? ...Sure, you were going to do it tonight. I bet. Here, do it now. I handed over all cleaning instruments to him, and without a word, turned and went inside to make everybody lunch (I washed my hands 75-100 times before touching the food). If he was going to do it later tonight anyways, then he would have no problem doing right now.
After lunch (pancake sandwiches, yumm!), when the babies went down for their naps (because remember earlier when I said that Charlie had gone down for his? No, he was just teasing me, and came down as soon as I was getting ready to take a bite of my sandwich), I tore the laundry room apart. I went at it with everything I had. I took everything off of the shelves, made piles for "keep", "donate", "garage", and "organize later, just get it the heck out of my face".
Look! I found a whole extra shelf in there!! Whats going to go on that shelf? All the junk cluttering my kitchen counters, that's what. The worst part about cleaning the laundry room, was when I was down on my hands and knees scrubbing moldy cat poop off of the stained tile. No, you read that right. Moldy... cat poop. Hands, and knees. It had to be done. It should have been done by the guy who claimed to "have things under control", in the kitty litter department, but I can't really blame him for not wanting to have his face an inch away from speckled patches of mold plastered to an ice cold kitty litter covered floor.
I dusted. I scrubbed. I scraped with my fingernails. I attacked that room from every angle possible. And now- its a sparkling clean (clean enough for me to let Charlie scoot himself all over the floor) multi purpose storage room, with room to spare.
So clean! See that box that says "punch bowl" up there? We've never used that punch bowl. Isn't that sad? I honestly don't even remember what it looks like (somebody come over for a punch party). And that Huggies box, its full of old photos. Full. Enough Flashback Fridays to last forever, haha.
As you can see, I buy in bulk. Freezer bags, disinfecting wipes (I'd be lost without them), and every Swiffer product ever made. When I first went to clean out this cupboard, it had 3 phone books in it, stacked on top of each other. Two different bags with random childproofing products in them. And a hanging kitchen fruit basket? ...yeah.
So um, I think everyone butt is covered (right? Hahah).
Look at how clean that laundry station is. There is nothing on top of the dryer except for the soap, Oxy Clean (behind the soap, its camera shy), and Shout. I prefer Spray N Wash, by the way, but they didn't have any at Sams Club when "stain remover" was scribbled on my shopping list.
Cleaning the laundry room was an all-afternoon project, but it was VERY worth it. I've never liked my laundry room, ever, and finally I do! I can walk in there barefooted. Soon I'll be stocking that big empty shelf with rice pasta and baking mixes. I love my laundry room. Never thought I'd see myself type that one.
This gave me an idea. I'm going to clean my entire house, the way I cleaned my laundry room. You know what its like when you move into a new place for the first time? You can't wait to fill the space with all of your things, get everything organized and cozy. ...Like that. I'm going to freakin' clean the heck out of my house, and make it comfortable again. Want to pick up a duster and help me?
No really, want to clean with me? Not my house, but, yours.
I'm designating next week, "Clean Week 2009". I'm going to take on a different project every day. The kitchen, my bathroom- whatever I feel needs it the most. Every day on my blog I'm going to post before and after pictures, write a little bit about how much it sucked, but why I'm so glad that its done and over with, and how much I love it (because I know that this is long overdue). I'll post a link list each day, the same way I do on Flashback Fridays, and if you want to participate in the week of cleaning (or even maybe just a day, its your house, your clutter, haha), I'd LOVE to see what y'all drown in lemon scented disinfectant.
Plus... my parents are coming to visit next month for the first time ever, and I want them to be impressed. There, I said it.