Ahead of another Bank Holiday weekend which will invariably be spent elbow deep in paint, furniture re-arranging, hedge-trimming or some such other task indicating that the extra days spent in the pub in your mid-20s are now over because you’re a mid-30s homeowner and are slowly turning into your parents, I got to thinking about housework and why, no matter how often it’s done, it’s just never enough. We can “talk” to total strangers through platforms that we have no idea how they work and accept it; why the hell has no-one figured out to eliminate dust?
This time last year we were stripping the wallpaper from the little 4th bedroom to turn it into an office
Don’t get me wrong, I love owning a house which needs cleaning (as opposed to spending my time cleaning someone else’s house when we were renting) and I love it in those first 30 seconds once it’s all clean and tidy and I collapse on the sofa in a semi-comatose state of exhaustion and appreciation, but that whole in between time? Not so much. My top 5 most hated household chores are:
5) Changing the bedding – I love nothing more than climbing into a newly laundered bed. The pillows are plump; the duvet is thick and all piled into the top of the cover. The sheets are smooth and it smells fantastic. But after that first night, it’s all over and I’m not in the habit of changing the bedding every day (although I do at least manage it once a week). I don’t even know why it bothers me so much, it takes barely 10 minutes to do but I’m more than happy if OH does it instead.
4) Cleaning the bathroom – it’s so faffy and fiddly and you need so many different products. Cleaning them always gets left to last on my list. OH is good at cleaning the bathrooms but he’s very thorough and it can take him a while to get through it. We joke that in the time it takes him to do the main bathroom and en-suite I’ve done the entire rest of the house. Or maybe that’s his plan…hm.
3) Sorting the washing – again, I have no idea why this bothers me. I don’t wash it, I don’t dry it. Modern marvels take care of all of that so it should hardly seem a stretch to simply put it all away but we are known to leave piles of clean washing waiting in the spare room to be put away for up to a week. Out of sight, out of mind for that one I think.
She looks like this at least twice a day…
2) Mopping the floors – this could be a daily occurrence in our household with a dog that loves nothing more than being filthy all. the. time. At least now it’s Spring the weather is better and so there aren’t too many muddy paw prints all over the place but this one in particular is never-ending. We have a cheapy laminate in the hallway and dining room and and ancient vinyl tiles in the kitchen (all will be replaced at some point) which I think are so dirty anyway it feels like I’m fighting a never-ending battle.
1) I.R.O.N.I.N.G. I have a simple solution to this one, I don’t do it. Ever. This one is an adult rejection of the childhood chore I was made to do when I got home from school since both my parents worked full time. Ironing bedding, ironing my Dad’s shirts (and at 6″4 they were some massive shirts), ironing everything. So when I left to go to Uni at 18, and then left home for good at 21, I decided not to bother ironing and I still don’t. OH irons his shirts and trousers and on the rare occasion I need something ironing I ask him to do it.
Perversely I do generally enjoy DIY-type tasks as there seems to be something very satisfying in surveying a room you’ve just painted or some freshly re-grouted tiles, and I find washing dishes very therapeutic but ironing? If I lived by myself I probably wouldn’t even own one.