Hiring Molly Maids to come to the house once a month was supposed to make things simpler for us. With three little girls and two working parents, we didn’t really care what the cost was to have somebody else come in and clean the bathrooms and dust the house. And by the way, there are very few things I like less than dusting. I’ll let that stuff build up until its crusty. At least until we bought a Swiffer duster. With that purchase, dusting has elevated itself from near the bottom of the “cleaning activities I like the least” list up to somewhere between dirty diapers and vomit on clothes. Imagine your kid has just eaten peas and drank a glass of milk. Now imagine the peas and milk decide to break out of cellblock stomach.
Oh yeah, you know what’s up. One time when Riley was a baby I was holding her in our family room when she got this weird look on her face. Even though my Dadstincts weren’t as sharp as Swarzenegger’s in Commando, I was able to react pretty quickly. I had her in my left arm when she decided to heed the call of the walrus. And by the way, until your kid has 1) opened the bomb bay doors while you are changing them and 2) decided to reformat the tummy drive on you – you aren’t really in the new parent club.
Anyway, as Riley honked I was somehow able to catch all the vomit in my sweatshirt while holding her and keeping a single ounce from hitting the carpet. Yes, vomit catching prowess is impressive to other parents.
Regardless, vomit really doesn’t have anything to with today. We have a couple cleaning ladies who come by once a month and today was the day. Which means last night was the night we have to clean up before the cleaning ladies clean up. It’s really dumb. It’s like washing the dishes before you put them in the dishwasher. It’s counter intuitive. Like watching Nancy Pelosi talk and expecting her face to move.
The deal is that if you put your stuff away and keep the floors and surfaces free from household debris, not a small task in our house, they do a really good job of cleaning your house. I’m not exaggerating. The place looks foreign after they leave. But the night before cleaning lady day is always chaotic because we have to have everything put away and picked up. Putting things away is not only tough for the girls, it is evidently complicated.
I’m helping Bailey and Kinsey pick up their room yesterday and we pull out a couple containers for their toys that slide under the bunk bed. I remove the lid to find inside the container socks, t-shirt, underwear. This doesn’t surprise me. Mostly because just seconds before this find, I discovered the partners to the container socks shoved between their dresser and the wall.
“Hey Bails, when I ask you to clean up your room it doesn’t mean relocate all the stuff in the middle of your room to the edges. Dirty laundry goes in the hamper.”
With absolutely zero confidence that she’ll remember this, we continue to remove the rest of the flotsam that accumulates in their room.
Assuming we’re ready for the cleaning ladies, we’re going through our regular morning routine. Things were going fairly smoothly until I told the girls, as I do every single morning, “Finish your breakfasts, get your shoes on, get your backpacks.”
I pretty sure that the girls have internal translators. It’s the only logical explanation. Because whenever I say it, I believe this is what they each hear:
“Bailey, stand on your seat and dump most of your breakfast on the floor and then go over and turn on the TV so it distracts Kinsey from getting anything done.”
“Kinsey, pull out every piece of paper in your backpack, even the stuff that’s been in there since Halloween, and put it on top of each article I’m trying read in the newspaper and then ignore me every time you hear the word ‘shoes.’”
“Riley, after your done getting ready I want you to point out all the really, really obvious things that are happening like how Kinsey isn’t ready to go and you are and how you were the first one to get your stuff ready and how long you’ve been waiting to go to school.”
We get Kinsey and Riley out the door with Mom but I still have to get my lunch ready, grab my suitcoat and put in my contacts. I get that all accomplished and and we’re about walk out the door when I remember that we have to leave a check for the cleaning ladies. I tell Bails to hold up and she gives me that look of pained disgust while she’s standing the doorway to the garage.
Seriously, she’s giving me the countdown. Grrr…
“Hold on, I have to write this check.”
“1…zero and a-half…zero and a-half…c’mon…”
Did you see that? She’s giving me the countdown. She’s 5. Oh yeah, I’m really looking forward to junior high…