Tuesday, November 18, 2008

"Clean Up, Clean Up, Everybody Do Your Share . . ."

I know Jenny can sing along with that wonderful clean up song, but if you can't, you should learn it. It's great for singing with children, and it even gives your husband a clue that he's expected to help too!

My parents will be here in just a few days! We can't wait for them to get here so we can show them around the city, and mostly so they can enjoy being Nana and Grandpy to Renae. Our only regret is that they aren't bringing the rest of my family with. (Although it would be tight quarters with 12 adults, and 4 kids here!)

So in preparation for their visit, I've been attempting to make this place neat as a pin. I do this for 2 reasons:

1. I have to DO something as I wait for them to get here! I can only do so much of my regular activities before my mind wanders again to our very first visitors coming to visit. When I'm excited about something, I like to do something that makes me feel like I'm helping the event come about. Even if there is nothing tangible that I can truly do yet, I usually find a way to DO something involving the upcoming event.

2. There is something about your MOTHER coming to visit that makes cleaning different than any other visit. It's not a chore to clean my house (although Jesse thinks it is) when my Mom is coming. I think it's a Mother/Daughter thing. Every daughter wants to show her mom what a great job she did at teaching the daughter to cook, clean and keep house. I am the youngest in my family, with three older brothers, so my chores growing up were the usual girl tasks. I was the one who helped my mom with cleaning when guests came over, and I helped with the hospitality aspect of visits too. My Mom is a GREAT hostess, and loves to have people in her home. She demonstrated to me what a house should look like when guests were on their way. (Which honestly, wasn't much different than what the house looked liked every day!)

So posts may be lacking a bit this week as I enjoy getting our piso ready for the parental units to arrive. Like most people, I feel relaxed when I know my house is REALLY clean when guests are over. And this upcoming visit gives me a good excuse to do a DEEP clean. I better get back to my list. But before I do, I have to leave you with the list of people that I think have really, really, really clean houses. ALL the time. Seriously.

Cleanest friends:
1. Jenny K.
2. Julie (not me, my sister-in-law)

And my messiest friends:
1. Steph (she'll admit it)
2. Jess Starmer (I only lived with you for 5 weeks . . .)
3. Mandi . . . I'm debating whether to put you on this list. :) I don't think you're quite messy enough though. Sorry. You'll have to be added to the in between list like the rest of us.

Now I'd like to know, on a scale of 1-10, how clean of a house do you USUALLY have?
10-If you were to lift up my couch you would not find dust bunnies.
1-If you were to lift up my couch, you'd find crumpled up wrapping paper from last year's Christmas.
(Jenny and Julie-if you rate yourselves below a 7, I'm going to give you a verbal beat down.)


Karen said...

I completely agree with you about the cleaning before mom comes! I was also taught that a clean house gives a good impression. Although sometimes I adopt the "if they care how clean my house is then they're not coming to visit me" idea but I do still clean before people come over!

Having just me and my fiance as people in the house, but also having 2 cats and 5 dogs, 5 of the total that shed, I'm proud to say that I'm a 5 or 6. I deep clean weekly and try to stay on top of the daily with Everett working 40+ hours traveling out of town daily and with me working and going to school!

Jonathan et Kari said...


I think that's about right-ish.

I love your new background :)

Mandi said...

Oh Julie I'm SO excited about your parents coming to visit you!! And I know it goes without saying, but take a buttload of pictures!! (I'll leave that up to your interpretation)

As for cleanliness? You're probably right, I'm on the inbetween list. Living in our new place it's a LOT easier to keep it clean, but there's still something about having 2 little boys and 1 husband - it IS harder to keep up with it all! I'd say I'm a 6. If I know company is coming I'll bump it up to an 8 or 9 ;-) hehe!

Scott & Julie said...

Oh Julie! If only you could see my house everyday. Before children I would probably give myself a 9 - all the time. Friday's were my cleaning day so that would be a 10 on the verge of being OCD. Now, with two kids I would go insaine if I expected my house to always be THAT clean. But for peace of mind (and to keep my OCD levels happy) I like to keep my house "picked up".
Enjoy cleaning your house. Wish I could help you.

Mari Bryant- Marks said...

yay for your parents visiting! I love it when mine are in town. I'm gonna have to give myself a 5 or 6. Simply because my three children are constantly leaving things all over the place. Its clean, just not tidy always. Under the couch is clean, just not under the cushions ;)

Jenny said...

I loved this post. It made me feel like you were in my living room talking to me. The title of your post loaded before the rest did and I found myself singing the clean up song...it DOES help get daddy's in on the cleaning...haha!

I totally relate with cleaning before company...although it's nice when the company is such good friends that I feel like I don't have to break my back cleaning. I miss when you and Jesse could just skip down the hall at a moments notice and come over for dinner!

How clean is my house? Well, having a baby has made a HUGE difference. I'm like Julie, I probably used to be like a 9 all the time and sometimes a 10 (not counting the semester that I student taught or the time when I was preggo and SO sick...then I was like a 6..ahhh!) My house is almost always "picked up" except for during the day when Aiden's toys are spread around. I used to be a twice a week floor scrubber, but now I'm down to once a week. And, even though I might be cleaner than some, organization is not something I'm that great at. I want to be, but we are running low on space, so please, PLEASE don't look in my hall closet! Your rating scale made me laugh..I did wear myself out just the other day pulling out furniture and stoves and fridges cleaning under them.

I totally agree! Your mother has the gift of hospitality. Every time I read her xanga I wish that I was at her house with you and Jesse for a good old fashioned Iowa meal! Her house was like my home away from home during college.

Have SO much fun with your parents! I can totally relate...cleaning in preparation helps to make it feel like you are escorting in the excitement a little sooner! I love the new background!

P.S. You put me in the mood to clean...but alas...I am a stay at home mama, not a stay at home maid and Aiden has story time today. My brain says stay home and clean, but my heart says go have fun with my baby. These times won't last!

Cooking and cleaning can wait til tomorrow
For babies grow up as we've learned to our sorrow
So quiet down cobwebs
Dust go to sleep
I'm rocking my baby
And babies don't keep!

kpjordan said...

Julie, I have to agree with you....your mom IS a fantastic host...actually, I was just thinking that very thought the other day. She exudes grace...has a gift for making others feel welcome in her home! And Julie, you're a great homemaker in every sense of the word.
My house...well, it may be a 7 (probably a 6 in reality, but I want to feel good about myself)...except this morning I found dust bunnies when I dropped an earring under my dresser. In fact, I'm going to go take care of that right now...so I can keep my 7 status. (Kari, you're probably really an 8 or 9. Plus,I know my son likes things picked up and clean.)