April 7, 2010

The 5 Minute Warning

Sometimes it's the little things

You've just received the call. Aunt Sally is in the neighbourhood, and is stopping by for a quick visit. You have 5 minutes to clean your house - panic time!

But there are a few quick things you can do to tidy up your house before she arrives that will make a drastic difference. First, remember to only clean the areas of the house that she might actually be in. Will she really insist on looking in your master bedroom? Probably not. Will she be stripping down and taking a shower in the upstairs bathroom? Let's hope not.

3 minutes - Grab an empty laundry basket and run around the main rooms, scooping up everything that is horribly out of place. This includes the cable bill on the dining room table, the wet bath towel on the staircase banister, and the pair of wellies in the middle of the living room (What? Just my house??)

1 minute - After you've cleared away some of the clutter, and ditched the basket in a bedroom, grab a paper towel and some Windex and wipe down all things shinny. Things like the kitchen faucet and the mirror in the guest bathroom (she will most likely use the bathroom during her visit, so make sure to make it sparkle).

At this point, start keeping an eye on the driveway, if you can. There are few things more embarrassing that being CAUGHT doing the mad clean.

1 minute - Tidy the worst spot. For me, this is right by the front door where everyone piles their shoes in a big pile and throws their keys and cell phones on the small table. Right angles are your friend. It is funny how a table can look so much neater if the wicker basket on top is lined up right.

If you have any time after this, put on the kettle, and set up the tea cups. And most importantly - never apologize for the mess. You probably see your house in a worse light than Aunt Sally will, and apologizing will. Be proud of your house! You work hard on it every day - you might as well enjoy it!

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