Saturday, May 30, 2009

Saturday mornings

Don't you just love the look of freshly vacuumed carpet? Look how lovely it is. Scroll back up and take a look. I'll wait.

When I was a kid, my mom would clean the house every Friday. It took her all day while we were at school, but when we came home the floor was vacuumed, the kitchen mopped, and everything was sparkling clean. Just approaching the house I could smell the pinesol and pledge. My one responsibility was on Friday mornings, I had to pick up everything from the bedroom floor and from under the bed so that Mom could vacuum. Not a terrible responsibility, but when I was a kid, I found it so overbearingly annoying. I remember many Friday mornings arguing with Mom about picking things up before school. I was spoiled.

When TC and I got married, I was surprised and a bit disappointed to find out that TC's family had the same tradition of cleaning like that once a week, but in his family everyone participated, which meant that I had to participate. I threw my share of fits in having to clean, trying to find ways to get out of it, dragging it out so it ended up taking all day Saturday. But over the years, we've gotten the cleaning down to a science. And I've grown up. And I've learned to appreciate a clean house and the work that goes into it.

So every Saturday morning, TC and I clean our house. We dust, sweep, vacuum, scrub the toilets, and wipe down the counters. We wash the laundry, fold it, put it away. Everything in each room is in its place, for a little while. The house smells like Old English and dryer sheets. We put on loud music (too bad for our neighbors that want to sleep in on Saturday mornings), dance around and clean. I know what I need to do, and TC knows what he needs to do. And I no longer drag it out so it doesn't take all day. Every few minutes, I'll emerge from the bathroom (where I'm cleaning) to dance for TC while he cleans, because the music is just that good. And when we're done we get ready for the day.

This is why I love Saturday afternoons after the cleaning is done, especially when I have a little bit of time to just lay down on the carpet and smell the clean.

Then comes Sunday, Monday, and so on. The mail accumulates on the counter, and my clothes accumulate in the corner of the bedroom. And the carpet is no longer brushed, and the sinks are no longer shiny, and the kitchen floor gets a little sticky. And my days are a little less bright. But invariably, Saturday comes around again, and while dancing around and having fun TC and I put the house back into its proper form. And the brightness resumes.

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