Out of the Mouths of…Husbands

Reacting to my aching back and the fact I announced I was about to carry some loads of laundry to the basement, the conversation went like this:
Me:  I’m gonna take down some laundry in a little while.

Devoted Spouse:  No, you’re not.

Me:  Oh, yeah, I am.

Devoted Spouse:  No! You can’t carry down; you can’t carry up…but…you can karaoke.

Seriously, this is my life…sigh…

Spilled the Coffee, Sucked up the Dog in the Vacuum…Life Gets Sticky

 As ya’ll know, my life is a series of minor calamities and mishaps.  If there’s a piece of furniture within twenty feet of me I guarantee you I’ll bump into it and bruise some part of me.  I am constantly overdoing things and then I end up walking like a 90 year old lady and sitting on a heating pad like some silly invalid.

Since the demise of the housecleaner — maybe I should rephrase that…since I canned the housecleaner, Devoted Spouse and I have upgraded the old cleaning implements.  We picked up a Shark steam cleaner for the tiled floors and found a sale on a we’re-not-in-Kansas-anymore-suck-up-everything-in-this-county Dyson vacuum cleaner.  We are now fully stocked with microfiber cloths, an upstairs Swiffer and a downstairs Swiffer and a whole host of bottles of Windex and other assorted burn-your-lungs chemicals.  In other words we are a two-person cleaning company and, frankly, our house is looking pretty spiffy.

But in the course of cleaning, stuff happens.  I had to break in both the Shark and the Dyson and I ended up steaming part of the family room carpet (which didn’t hurt it) and that roller ball thingie on the Dyson makes it go in all kinds of directions so I kind of ran into a few pieces of furniture and danged near sucked the daylights out of EmmaLou, Golden Destroyer. While cleaning the mirrors, something wasn’t working right so I had to unscrew the top of the bottle, take out the pump thingie, and of course I knocked over the bottle and Windex went everywhere.  After all was cleaned… being the Type A person I am, I realized I overdid it and had to pull out the Big Bottle of Advil and the heating pad.  It’s no big deal; I’m used to that.  Plus, for all my efforts and bodily discomfort, I had a clean house.

The past few mornings in the interest of marital accord I have been arising first, feeding precious pup and taking her out, and also making the coffee.  Stepford Wife.  To keep the coffee hot a little longer I always pre-warm the mugs with steaming hot water.  This morning I proceed to pour my first cup of coffee into – yes – a cup that is already filled with hot water.  There was coffee and water everywhere.  Out came the cleam microfiber cloths…and I remembered something a friend quoted on Facebook the other day…lyrics to the perfect song for all those days when stuff happens and ya gotta remember that it’s just not a big deal and keep on smiling.  So when you go through the nonsense I go through (and I know you do) just start singing this song and maybe it will help.  It’s true… life gets sticky and ya get bruised up a bit but no matter what it brings, don’t worry ’bout a thing.   sigh…

We All Know What They Say About Good Intentions…

When I fired Gretchen the Immaculate I just knew doing my own housework would be no big deal.  Afterall I had plenty of time on my hands so I can do chores around the house.  I even thought about it logically (yeah, me logical) and set up a tentative plan of action for when certain chores would be done.

She’s been gone almost two weeks now.  I got the upstairs and the downstairs vacuumed.  I have dusted everything except the family room coffee table – and what hasn’t been dusted has been Swiffered to death.  I have cleaned all 3 bathrooms every few days and wiped down every surface with Clorox wipes.  The kitchen is tidy, the family room is a tad cluttered, and the table next to my comfy chair is a disgrace (but underneath the stuff the wood is nice and polished).

What I’m finding out is this cleaning house stuff is for the birds.  I took it on with a good attitude and told myself I would take pride in keeping my house spotless.  Oh who was I kidding?  There’s 3 days worth of newspapers on the coffee table and I truly don’t care.  There is a pile of books on my table and it doesn’t bother me in the least.  I’m not even sure I made the bed today — although in my defense that bed has been made daily!

A friend of mine on Twitter had links to her interior design friends and I just had to hit those links.  OMG those houses make mine look like a reject in the worst trailer park available.  My house is never going to look that well designed or that perfectly put together and I can live with that — I live in my home; I don’t use it as a showcase.  (Note to self:  don’t visit those sites anymore; they only increase your dosage of Valium.)

I bought one of those Shark steam cleaners for the kitchen floor  – I’ve been spot cleaning this floor since Gretchen left and the Shark is sitting in the corner still in the box.  That’s the big project for Monday – take the stupid machine out, put it together and steam clean this floor!  At least that’s the plan.

It’s about good intentions.  I just need to attack this housecleaning thing a little at a time.  I did manage to get the dining room back in order after Scriber’s Web-inspired collage challenge was finished – man that dining room table was a disaster area for a few days but it looks nice and pretty again.  Just in time to mess it up with my next craft project.  And just so you know I didn’t make up the collage challenge,  here’s my finished project for what it’s worth:

Did u think I would pick any other subject than EmmaLou??

But back to the cleaning…

I don’t know about this kitchen floor.  I’m thinking moving the rug around might work for awhile to hide the dirty spots.  I’ll get around to cleaning it…that chore really is on my list but I just remembered I have some other things to do on Monday…

Germs? In My Home? I Don’t Think So….

this nasty pic of Salmonella from www.righthealth.com

this nasty pic of Salmonella from http://www.righthealth.com

An article the other day alerted me to the fact my home is covered literally in nasty germs; germs that could potentially make me very sick.  Great, something else I have to put on my list of worries.

Germs.  I wash my hands all the time but apparently that’s not enough — now I have to wash my hands while simultaneously singing several stanzas of Happy Birthday to You or some other song so the soap has enough time to actually kill the germs.  Then I wipe my hands on a towel I’ve already used.  Shoots that clean theory right out, huh?

“Gretchen the Immaculate” comes in every other week and goes top to bottom scrubbing and sanitizing my house.  Unfortunately I have seen some of her “cleaning” methods.  She uses my dish towels to wipe things down like my kitchen counters after she has used my “dish sponge” to do the cleaning.  Yikes – that’s like just grabbing a big old fistful of Salmonella and spreading it around like you’re making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  I’ll have germs on whole wheat for lunch, thank you…with a side of virus to go –  – yum.

When we come home to our “clean” house, the first thing I always do is throw all the dish towels down the basement stairs for the laundry; the second thing I do is take the kitchen sponge and dampen it and pop it in the microwave for about a minute and a half on high to sanitize it.  And the third thing I do is get out the Clorox Wipes and wipe down every “touchable” surface — light fixtures, the top of faucets, toilet bowl handles, remote controls, all doorknobs and every other surface I can get a wipe to wipe.  Did you know one of the dirtiest spots (aside from your remote control) is the keypad on your Microwave?  No lie.  I’m getting to be an expert at where these little buggers hide.  I Clorox-wiped my laptop keyboard the other day — had a hard time with the spot where the quotation key used to be – didn’t want to get any minute amount of liquid down in there or I’m toast for typing.  So now everytime I use the hole that serves as the quotation mark button, I worry about what obnoxious disease I may be introducing to my fingers.  Wait a minute, my nose itches; OH NO, I TOUCHED MY FACE.  They always tell you in capital letters not to touch around your nose or eyes – yeah, like don’t think about pink elephants.  Ya thought of ‘em, didn’t ya?  Bet you scratched your nose, too.  Germ-spreader.

I’m becoming a germophobe and it’s not pretty.  At church I try not to touch people – although I do give out hugs – I just try not to get too close (except for this past Sunday but that was another special story I”ll share another day).  And as soon as I’m back in my car, out comes the antibacterial stuff in the little container and goop gets dropped in my hands and put on my steering wheel, inside of the door handle, and the gear shift.  One day while I was still working, one of my cubemates dared me to put some of the germs goop in my mouth to sanitize my mouth.  Of course being the idiot I am (and always looking for a laugh) I did it.  Didn’t work – my mouth wasn’t any cleaner and it was weeks before the taste of a weird greasy-like Pledge substance actually left my mouth.  Of course my breath was lemony fresh but I digress.   This germ thing  is becoming so obsessive it’s just this side of out of control.

Go ahead, call me anal.  Call me obsessive compulsive.  Call me a nutcase.  I don’t care.  The flu is not visiting these premises this year if there’s anything I can do about it.  Now if I could just figure out how to hold my breath successfully for long periods of time…

I do this because I suffer from an immune system that thinks flu and cold germs are its friends — an immune system that invites in e.Coli and Salmonella and all other types of nasty things to my system for a party.  C’mon down, Linda’s immune system is now open for business.  Gah…..

I’ve been sniffling and sneezing alot the last two weeks — I thought it was a cold but I think it’s just the change in weather here and allergies kicking in.  My immune system is setting the table already with the chips and dip just inviting the germies to gather so I’m taking a Defensive Stance and eating bucketfulls of Vitamin C and Vitamin D and lots of fresh fruits, veggies, protein, and water.  I’m also eating alot of fish.  I’ll probably drop dead from mercury poisoning or from the amounts of weird birth control drugs that are showing up in tap water, but at least I’m trying.

I’m not even going to mention the possibilities of germs from EmmaLou the Golden Destroyer – she’s what I nicely refer to as a self-cleaning pet…and then she plants one on me – right on the lips – YUK – dog germs (as Lucy would say).  So far, she hasn’t transmitted anything to us – but I know that many times she finds her own butt rather fascinating, so ’nuff said there.  Germs.  Little buggers everywhere.

Clorox likes me so much they send me coupons.  I think I’ve made their stock go up because I invest in so much of their product.  Clorox is a great cleaner – just watch your skin, your carpet, anything that might lose color like your Golden Retriever – yikes – and oh yeah, it works a real number on the nasty weeds the neighbor behind me is allowing to grow through my fence – I just surreptitiously go out there at night and pour Clorox over the fenceline.  Muahahahahaha.  Take that you crazy man!

So don’t forget to wipe down all your surfaces with a disinfectant – and stay out of the doctor’s office coz I know from past experience that place will make you sicker when you leave than when you first walked in. Achoo!  Oh crap…

Vern Where Are You When I Need You?

interiordecorators1

First off let me say I wrote this posting early Thursday and somehow WordPress never saved it – so here I am reconstructing it and I don’t have the short term memory skills for this.  Gah.

This is a pic of my house that I’ve posted before — it’s an average house in a  middle class neighborhood – we’re not that insane over making sure each blade of grass is even (as evidenced by the dead bush in front) but it’s a nice house and I’ve enjoyed it and it makes me happy.  At least until I can sell it and move south where it never has ice.

our-house2

But right now I’m not feeling it’s the outside that matters…

First I was having a pretty good day until I came downstairs and noticed what a mess the family room couch was.  The new sheet I had bought to cover the cushions was just everywhere so I took it off and noticed about an 8 inch rip in the middle of the sheet.  EmmaLou at it again.  Here she is laying on the sheet on the kitchen floor – you can see the light space by her face; that’s the amazing rip.

baddog12

Of course that meant I had to go out to my favorite store Bed, Bath, and Way Beyond to find a heavy bath sheet that might help protect the couch cushions.  Gah.

I got home and put the new beige bath sheet on the couch and I was so proud of how nice it looked.  Okay it’s not designer anything – just a comfy family room, but it made me happy.

cleancouch1Like I said, not fancy but my home is comfy and my style is eclectic – some very nice pieces, some antiques, some older, cheaper stuff all mixed together – it’s a home ya know?

Well, I made the mistake of going outside and I saw my neighbor (Mr. Lawnmower Man) across the street so I walked over to talk to him.  He had recently had his countertops all replaced and I wondered if he was happy (we need to do the same thing at our house) with the work.  He invited me in.  I almost had a stroke. I have never seen such a beautiful home in my life (they have a ranch style house unlike our two story).  Everything was perfect – it was immaculately clean, everything either matched or complimented and I thought for sure I was in a decorator’s showhouse.  It made my stomach hurt.  Well his countertops are Corian and they are drop dead gorgeous.  I got the card for the company and plan to call them after we install the new oven so they can fix the countertop around that oven.

But I swear to you I will never let my neighbors into my house – never.  Their house is Vern Yip;  mine was done by these fellas – they came in as low bid.

hillbillly

Of course I came home, started throwing things in bags to give to the Vietnam Vets organization, throwing out junk mail, straightening pillows, looking at the hundred or so books stashed in the living room and the end table next to my comfy chair which has taken on a life of its own as far as storing crap.  Now I want to sell or give away all my furniture, rip out all my carpeting, repaint all my walls, paint my kitchen cabinets, install chandeliers, buy new draperies (or anything but the sheers I whipped up on my handy dandy scary sewing machine).  I’m in the depths of decorator depression.  I even have a housecleaner in once every other week and still my house looks like overstuffed crap – too many tchotckes and books, and way too much furniture.  I’m so depressed. At least I have curtains on the front door so if my neighbor shows up I can hide and not open the door.

a-clean-house2

I Deserve the Housewife Award

housewife2

D’ya remember a few days ago I wrote about sheets and not being able to tell which size they were and I actually showed you how my linen closet once looked and the after picture when I tore it apart trying to find the correct sheets?

Well kids, I got my butt in gear, I got out the old label maker, and I fixed that closet up once again.  Everything is where it should be — all the shelves are labeled for ease.  This time I’m only putting towels in this closet that go to the guest bathroom and putting the other towels in our master bath linen closet – made more sense.  Leaves more room, too.

The odd thing is I found sheets that don’t match and pillow cases that don’t go with any sheet sets.  What’s that all about?  I’m thinking perhaps we took one of the older sheets to use as a tarp when we painted a room and it may still be living in the basement (where no one in their right mind ever goes on purpose). Or there is the possibility that EmmaLou the Golden Retriever has set up a bed somewhere.   So I’m going to do some sheet hunting in the next few days and if I don’t find the matches, well guess I’ll be cutting up some new rags to use around the house!

Here is the before picture just to horrify you all once again (and humiliate myself in public).

linenclosetafter1

And here it is today, labeled, neat, tidy, orderly, and making me very happy.  So is the icepack on my shoulder…

cleancloset

I’m almost afraid I may end up cleaning the kitchen pantry, or heaven forbid, one of the junk drawers (you noticed I said one of the junk drawers which hints there might be more lurking around the house?)  This is scary.  I’m going to go take a nap now and maybe when I get up that demented notion of cleaning out anymore closets will be gone.

Sheet Manufacturers Listen Up!

prettybed

I hate changing the bed linens – it’s such a pain particularly now that my shoulder and back hurt.  Thankfully Devoted Spouse helps.  He not only changes linens, he does laundry, folds the sheets, and puts them in the linen closet.  Watta guy!

I used to have a very nice, neatly arranged linen closet – I followed Martha Stewart’s suggestions and even labeled the friggin’ shelves – towels for us, towels for the guest bath, double-size sheets, queen-size sheets, etc.  I drew the line at wrapping up the sheet sets in ribbon – that’s too much nonsense even for me.  But it was pretty, neat, and I could find everything.  It sort of looked like this:

linenclosetbefore

Then one of my friends made fun of me and I ripped off all the labels and decided to do it alphabetically with the double sized sheets on the first shelf and the queen sized sheets on the next shelf – easy, huh?  The problem here is that each sheet manufacturer places their little (and I do mean little) tag denoting the sheet size in a different place on every sheet.  So when you take the sheet out of the closet you can’t tell immediately which size and which bed it is for.  Why don’t they make the tags bigger and all of them sewn in the same place on the sheet so we can find them???

Now, to make a short story longer, while I am still incapacitated, I am in the queen-sized bed and Devoted Spouse has taken up temporary residence in the guest room double-sized bed.  Last night was sheet changing night.  Now, since I’ve taken off the labels and we’ve gotten a bit lax in where we actually store the sheets, I just started pulling out sheets like crazy and looking for the stupid &*%%$% labels to tell me which bed they were for.  By the time I actually found two complete sets, one for each room, the linen closet looked like Freddie Kruger from Nightmare on Elm Street had hacked his way through it.  I just grabbed everything left and literally crammed it back in the closet and shut the doors.    This is how it looked after the tag fight:  Unbelievable! I’m horrified.

linenclosetafter

This is how it looks today:

todayscloset

I wouldn’t open that door for all the Timbits in the world!  Maybe tomorrow…

I want my Valium back.  I hate to think how long it’s going to take me to re-arrange this horrid mess I made and I have gotten the bright idea to find a black laundry marker and mark on the underside corner of each sheet what size it is so I never have to go through this again.

Please tell me I’m not the only one who goes through this ridiculous nonsense.