Thursday in our house is cleaning day.
Start at the top and working down, over three floors and around one child, hopefully finishing in enough time to make the three O’Clock school run and get diner on the go. Not always successfully…
Now, I don’t know about you, but I quite like cleaning. Returning the house to some semblance of order, ‘archiving’ all the children’s art work from the past week and sorting out that cupboard under the sink in the kitchen one more time, brings a quiet satisfaction of a job well done.
Until my wife gets in with George. Then her laptop bag, handbag and assorted files are placed in the hallway, ready for their trip up to the study. George dumps his lunch box in the kitchen, and hands over yet another batch of art work for my approval, before going upstairs to get changed. Whereupon he and Matthew will endeavour to put their room back just the way they like it.
Mummy, cup of tea in hand, will struggle upstairs and spread herself, laptop and next weeks planning all over the study.
Then I have to go and pick Jessica up.
Normally the boys will come with me, promises of tidying up when they get back ringing out, and off we go. On our return three pairs of shoes, three jackets, another lunch box, a school bag , a discarded uniform and if I’m lucky, yet more art work, is added to the once clean hallway. After changing the front room is utilised by Jessica and George for Wii playing and arguing over, ermm well anything really, whilst Matthew returns to emptying everything over his floor in his bedroom.
Time for dinner. Oh the mess of a family eating spaghetti Bolognese!
Safe to say that by this stage of the day, the house is almost back to its pre cleaned state, and that’s before bath time is negotiated.
The upshot? Perhaps it’s to be expected that with five of us in the house it’s never going to stay pristine for long, and, if I couldn’t take the joke, I shouldn’t have had children. But I can’t help wishing that I could have at least an hour to enjoy a nice clean, tidy house, before it succumbs to the inevitable.
Too much to ask?