Party Countdown

October 28, 2006 at 8:17 am 23 comments

Okay, Ruger’s taken up his position guarding his kid this morning, which means the rest of this crew is gonna get busy up in here.

I wish I could say they were enthusiastic about the need to “party clean” the house of perpetual remodeling. But these grandgirls of mine are not accustomed to doing anything more than reluctantly picking up half of whatever crap they just took out.

In the three year olds words “I has just tree words for you Nana: I is not cleanin’ nuffin.” I told her that was five words, not three. The debate that ensued was entirely too complicated to repeat. The eight year old attempted to bargain chores for extra privileges. The seven year old suddenly has “a sick headache, and my stomach really hurts.” Poor things, these girls just don’t realize they’re in the company of a pro.

I’ve never cared much about housework. When I was raising my five kids everyone had to kick in, and we kept the mess to “somewhat sanitary but cluttered” most of the time. Aside from daily dishwashing, we were too busy with work, school, cheerleading, band, sports and running amuck in many other ways to fit serious housework into the schedule. Luckily we were organized, they always knew their bookbags would be in the pile next to the door, and their shoes were in that heap by the laundry room.

Certain events spurred a major cleaning: before a holiday, a party or the all out, frenzied “mop until you see your face in that floor” event- a visit from my sister-mom. My kids knew if Ace of Base, or the Moody Blues were blaring from the stereo, war had been declared on the dirt. Failing to jump into the fray and help was grounds for swift and painful retribution. They also knew that we’d be done by the time all five records (yes, it was 80’s, we had records) had dropped down the spindle.

We had a system: Tiffany (grandgirls mom) would carry a basket through the house gathering up the orphans and returning them to their places. Michelle took care of anything wet (bathrooms, kitchen), Sheena took charge of the vacuum and broom, Princess cleaned out the closets and shelves, I washed walls, took care of the laundry and dusted. Pap and the boy whipped the yard and garage into shape. Four hours to house beautiful.

These little grandgirls don’t have a chance.

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Burning Questions If It’s Sunday, I Must Be Brain Damaged

23 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Ordinary Janet  |  October 28, 2006 at 9:24 am

    My money is on the kids!

    Reply
  • 2. Guyana-Gyal  |  October 28, 2006 at 9:49 am

    My sister shocked her two little boys, aged 7 & 9…one day she told them that she was going to make them pay a fee / fine, for everytime she has to do the work they’re supposed to do. She said you should’ve seen their faces!!! hahaha

    Reply
  • 3. Delmonti  |  October 28, 2006 at 10:31 am

    I’m envious…..

    Reply
  • 4. Kat Campbell  |  October 28, 2006 at 10:41 am

    Oh ye of little faith Janet!

    GG – Your sister is a genius!

    Envious of the party or of the slave labor delmonti?

    Reply
  • 5. goldennib  |  October 28, 2006 at 10:49 am

    A clean house is a sure sign you have nothing better to do.

    I don’t dust. My mother, who is heartly disappointed in my housekeeping skills, once told me I’m not a real woman because I can ignore a dusty coffee table.

    Oh, and my money is on you. Those kids don’t stand a chance.

    Reply
  • 6. Kevin G Brown  |  October 28, 2006 at 10:53 am

    lol. My brother, sister and I are all very messy, always have been, and always show a reluctance to doing chores. When my brother and I moved out of our parents house a few years ago we both suddenly turned into house proud obsessive tidy-uppers!

    Reply
  • 7. The Rev. Dr. Kate  |  October 28, 2006 at 11:19 am

    When you are finished at your house, would you come to mine? You have it down to a system. I find it more convenient to simply lose my glasses – then I can’t see the mess!

    Reply
  • 8. Jackie's Garden  |  October 28, 2006 at 1:11 pm

    Kat, cute blog. And Ruger’s baby is SOOOO beautiful.

    I love the excuses kids come up with. And they never learn that we’ll always be one step ahead of them. For the longest time, my son really DID think I had eyes in the back of my head.

    I’m a neat-freak. Everything has to be in it’s place always. My kids’ amusement was to come into the house when I was gone and just slightly rearrange things! (I can tell if a picture has moved 1/2 inch on a shelf!).

    Hope the house gets ‘party-ready’ and you have fun doing it.

    Reply
  • 9. Froth  |  October 28, 2006 at 1:48 pm

    Holy moly. We must be channelling. My brother and sis in law are coming from Seattle for a visit. After OU plays feetball I have to douche the house. It’s the “pre-visit douche” where-in just like you described, everything gets clean. I hate it. It sucks.

    Reply
  • 10. DaveM  |  October 28, 2006 at 4:19 pm

    I remember my sons bedroom, it was such a mess that he never knew where to start. A bit like you cant see the wood for the trees.

    Reply
  • 11. Kat Campbell  |  October 28, 2006 at 5:04 pm

    goldennib – I absolutely agree. Who wants to clean when you could be playing Monopoly?

    kevin – your a mother’s dream. I grew up in a house so immaculate it felt like living in a magazine. That’s why I’m such a mess now I’m sure.

    Dr. Kate – If the price is right, have crew will travel. It’s always more interesting to clean someone else’s house.

    Jackie – Why is that no surprise to me? You of the pond screen!

    Froth – Isn’t that a dead indicator that we’re a couple of hypocrites! If we really thought it was okay to live like we do, we wouldn’t bother to clean for company.

    Dave – my kids too, the girls used to say “yeah, I have your jeans, walk in my bedroom and look down.”

    Reply
  • 12. Mr. Fabulous  |  October 28, 2006 at 6:21 pm

    Okay, excuse my ignorance on this topic.

    Tiffany and Sheena.

    Pseudonyms, or did you really name your kids after 80’s pop icons?

    Because that would be way cool, actually. So if those aren’t their real names, please lie to me.

    Reply
  • 13. Kat Campbell  |  October 28, 2006 at 7:12 pm

    Well Mr. Fab, they are actually named Tiffany (after the jewelery store) and Sheena (after my cousin in Scotland. Sorry to dissapoint dude.

    Reply
  • 14. QuillDancer  |  October 28, 2006 at 8:39 pm

    Kat — my sister, Jackie of Jackie’s Garden, was once so obsessive about her house-perfect that you couldn’t even move anything while you used it. She and my dad (her step-father) once had a tug-of-war over an ashtray. He would pull it close to hand. She would put it back. And she cleaned it every whip-stitch, too. Finally, Dad picked up the ashtray and told Jackie she could clean it and put it wherever she wanted after he left, but in the meantime it was his and she wasn’t to touch it.

    Now Jackie isn’t quite that bad. She doesn’t insist on cleaning up after folks while they’re using her stuff. But just for kicks, go visit her and move one of her whatnots or a couch pillow, then sit back (elsewhere) and wait for her to come into the room.

    Reply
  • 15. Kat Campbell  |  October 28, 2006 at 9:01 pm

    Quilly – as you probably saw from her comments here today, at least she admits to it! I wish “neat” came more naturally to me, it’s just darn work!

    Reply
  • 16. sleeplessinoklahoma  |  October 28, 2006 at 9:14 pm

    OK, I think I have officially laughed my butt off. I am a very visual person & you wrote such a beautiful description–I saw it all. Thanks for sharing. I have to agree…those kid’s never stood a chance. But ya just gotta love their ingenuity for trying to get out of the work. Kids are great!!

    Have a wonderfully blessed weekend.

    Nanaste`…

    Reply
  • 17. sleeplessinoklahoma  |  October 28, 2006 at 9:15 pm

    Dang, I hate it when I hit the wrong key & don’t notice. It should have closed with…

    NAMASTE`

    so…Namaste`

    Reply
  • 18. Kat Campbell  |  October 28, 2006 at 10:22 pm

    Thanks for dropping by Namaste, kids are great, especially these because when I’m tired of them… I ship them home with their mother!

    Reply
  • 19. Mr. Fabulous  |  October 28, 2006 at 11:41 pm

    Sorry. I’m not buying it LOL

    Reply
  • 20. Hammer  |  October 29, 2006 at 12:22 am

    My girls do the bathrooms and the wiping of low stuff and my son vacuums. They all do their own laundry. Although, I don’t expect perfection by any means.

    I say start them young before they develop bad lazy habits.

    Reply
  • 21. Gela's Words  |  October 29, 2006 at 1:29 am

    I was just thinking that I should have me some children, to help with my work load 🙂 but I remember that my workload will be tremendously increased long before they can help me decrease the original amount.

    Grandgirls reminds me of me at those ages.

    Reply
  • 22. Just Tom  |  October 29, 2006 at 1:33 am

    Man, your life sounds like ours. I actually like it that we have out of town guests or the occasional party because we get the house so clean. I really like a clean house, but, like you with a business, teaching, three kids, all the running around, it’s a low-level clutter at best. I’m sure that lots of us can relate to your post. Peace, T

    Reply
  • 23. Kat Campbell  |  October 29, 2006 at 7:18 am

    Mr. Fab – Moldy Pop Princesses stole their names off my kids.

    Hammer- I hope that works for you. Certainly didn’t work for my Mom!

    Tom – Impossible to have a life and be a clean freak, although Jackie has proven that wrong according to these comments.

    GG – True, its impossible to assign enough labor to afford the kids.

    Reply

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