While cleaning my bedroom today, I decided to follow the directions in one of my books. It tells me how to clean any room in my house in just seven easy steps! Here are the seven steps, quoted directly from my book in italics with my commentary underneath in normal print:
1. First, bring order to the room. Pick up newspapers and magazines, carry out faded flowers, put away clothing, make beds, roll up scatter rugs.
After I finished this step I decided to take a break and have a snack. When I walked into the kitchen, Rex saw the room through the door and explained, "Wow, you cleaned the entire bedroom! Thanks!" I sighed and told him I had only completed step one of seven. Ordinarily I would have thought I was finished too, but alas. I am a vintage housewife now. I have a seven step program.
2. Clean up grease spots or smudges on rugs under dining table, in front of fireplace and sofa, etc. A little cleaning fluid on a clean cloth usually will take care of them.
I genuinely looked for "grease spots" or "smudges," but I couldn't find any. I considered this step finished.
3. Now vacuum-clean rugs or carpets thoroughly. Some housekeepers like to do this after dusting; with modern cleaning equipment, one way is as good as the other.
Because the book gave me permission, I decided to do my dusting before vacuuming. Why would anyone vacuum first? Then all of the dust will go onto the freshly cleaned floor!
4. Dust furniture, lamps, books, window sills. With flat upholstery tool, clean upholstery furniture. Use crevice tool behind and under pillows.
Have you ever dusted the tops of your windowsills, bookshelves, or pictures that have been hanging on your wall for a long time? It's gross. I can't believe I've been living in such a dusty environment. It made me feel really disgusting, so I dusted twice. Now that I've been exposed to the horrors of an undusted windowsill, I'll be dusting a lot more often.
5. Change to wall or floor brush, and clean moldings, window and door frames, Venitian blinds, baseboards, bare floor, and areas under low furniture.
What the heck is a wall or floor brush? Furthermore, what is a Venitian blind? Am I supposed to know that? It wasn't in the book's glossary, so I had to skip this step. Sorry.
6. Change to upholstery attachment and thoroughly clean draperies from top to bottom, particularly around pleats and folds at the top.
Would my bedroom curtains be considered "draperies"? Probably. I've never vacuumed a drapery. What's an upholstery attachment? This book is referencing way too many different attachments. I need to read an entire chapter about vacuums to know what on earth is going on with that contraption.
7. Put the furniture back in place, set the room in order, and put away your vacuum and other cleaning equipment.
Wait, I was supposed to move the furniture? Oops... But really, there is no way that wives moved giant bookshelves and beds. It is far more likely that the book just means small end tables and stuff. I considered the fact that I hadn't cleaned under my bed in a long time, though, so I bent down to see what was under there. I was going to crawl under, but the first thing I saw was that two of our boards were broken. Um, that's not good. I didn't want to crawl under and then have the bed crash onto me. Rex would walk in to find just my legs sticking out like the Wicked Witch of the East or something. Instead, I grabbed a flashlight and shone it under the bed to see what kind of stuff was under there.
The first thing that happened was that the light was reflected back to me by two bright green eyes. I screamed and had flashbacks to when I was a kid (I KNEW there was a monster under my bed!), but then I realized it was just Elsie. She hates the vacuum, so I guess she hid under there when I turned it on. Phew! I also found a host of other things, which include but are not limited to the following:
- a sock
- a shirt
- some old issues of Time and Good Housekeeping magazines
- a 2011 yearly planner (how long has that been there?!)
- four mostly empty water bottles (How did those get there? Who drinks water and then thinks "Oh, where should I put this empty bottle? I know - under the bed!)
- another flashlight
- a back massager (so that's where that went!)
- etc. etc.
So anyway, I learned a lot today. Namely, I need to dust A LOT more often, and I need to clean out the stuff under my bed because really random stuff tends to accumulate under there. Oh, and a monster does live under my bed.