Friday, September 30, 2011


We just returned home from a week visiting Kimberly's family in Minneapolis.  We were treated like royalty and relished every minute with our grandkids!  

But home looked good when our plane landed. We came back to a clean house.

Why do I find it necessary to clean the house, wash the clothes and dishes before I leave on a trip? Probably the same reason I make my bed every morning, even when no one is coming over.  If I die, I don't want to be embarrassed when a bunch of people come over and see a mess!  Or maybe I'm basically lazy and don't want to face housework when I get back home from traveling.  

I don't think it's so much obsession as it is perception.  Obsessive people clean constantly.  I just pick things up so to the eye it appears clean.  I've always hated clutter.  Years ago I learned that neatness passes for cleanliness.  Neither is next to godliness.

I had an OCD neighbor once.  She actually stopped by my house one day to tell me, "Kathy, you probably can't tell from inside, but your 2 window shades are not level."  Now I must admit that I almost laughed at her then realized she was serious.  Raising three level-headed kids trumped raising two level blinds that morning!

My house looks different now in my 60's than it did in my 30's.  Then again life is quite different these days.  Young mothers dream of order, decluttering and decor.  Those rooted dreams come true AFTER the kids leave home and time becomes yours again.   So invest in lives now and living rooms later.  

When we first entered our empty nest we loved it.  So much changed. Laundry for example.  With a family of five, washing clothes was a frequent chore.   But one day  Doug asked his empty-nester wife, "Kathy, you gonna wash clothes soon?"

I opened the hamper and spotted a small pile of black socks, hardly a load.  "No.  Why?"

"I'm almost out of black socks."

"How many pairs do you have?"

"Six or seven."

So I pondered the new dilemma then countered with, "Honey, if you'll buy about three more pair, I'll wash a dark load about every 10 days."  Now in the summer with sweaty clothes I may break down and wash weekly!

Naw.  I'm not obsessive.  It's all about perception.   Don't feel the top of my fridge and judge me.  Just do a quick scan of the room and it'll pass for clean!  I vote for a home over a house any day.  Come over and put your feet up.  Shoes on are fine!

Read about my philosophy on dusting.

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