ditching the deep clean

est. 1975 reexamines the importance of housekeeping after returning to work. #SAHM #WAHM #cleaning #housekeeping #funny #humor #est1975 #est1975blog @est1975blog

When I first became a stay-at home mom, I took great pride in keeping my house absolutely pristine. Not just tidy, you understand, but ORGANIZED. Each toy had its proper place; paperwork got filed neatly away; coats and pants were stored according to season; and shirts were lined up by color, sleeve length, and collar type. There wasn’t a single thing where it wasn’t supposed to be.

I also deep-cleaned. Constantly. I scrubbed down the bathrooms each and every day. I swept, mopped, and vacuumed EVERYTHING. I dusted and polished every surface, from the blades of the bedroom ceiling fan to the fake butt indentations on the dining room chairs.

est. 1975 reexamines the importance of housekeeping after returning to work. #SAHM #WAHM #cleaning #housekeeping #funny #humor #est1975 #est1975blog @est1975blog
Judging by the size of these fake butt indentations, my dining room chairs were made for 9-year-old girls and THAT’S IT.

No speck of dirt was safe—not the curly hairs behind the toilets, not the mushy residue in the soap dishes, not the Goldfish crumbs between the couch cushions. My house was immaculate.

Then I decided to go back to work.

I refused to return to a starchy office smelling of burned popcorn and sexual harassment. No thanks! I was going to jump on that new-fangled “work-from-home” bandwagon that everyone was talking about, and no one was going to stop me. Best of both worlds, right? I’d be able to bring home the bacon while still keeping my house spic-and-span. After all, I was my own boss! I could take a break any time I wanted and scrub out the tub ring. I could rinse off the dishes after lunch and load them into the dishwasher. At the very least, I could keep the laundry going at a slow but steady pace.

BAHAHAHAHahahahaha.

These delusions lasted no more than a week. I quickly realized that working moms of ANY variety have to drastically change their housekeeping expectations PDQ—or use some of their precious income to hire a cleaning service. Here are just a few examples of how I personally have devolved from”Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval” to “Final Order of Condemnation”:

Making the beds. I used to change the linens weekly, and when I did, I would launder everything from the mattress pad to the actual duvet. Now I throw myself a parade for just changing the sheets—which maybe happens once a month, or whenever my husband gets in bed, starts scratching like a feral cat, and launches into theatrics about how  “EVERYTHING! ITCHES!” You know. Whichever comes first.

est. 1975 reexamines the importance of housekeeping after returning to work. #SAHM #WAHM #cleaning #housekeeping #funny #humor #est1975 #est1975blog @est1975blog
This is how you make the bed, right? I mean, the blanket goes on top of the pillows like that, right? And the sheets and pillowcases should all be different colors and patterns, right?

Dusting. I once dusted every imaginable surface. Wainscoting, crown moldings, shelves full of knick-knacks, entire bookcases—nothing was spared. But not anymore! Now I only dust what’s visible. If it can’t easily be seen, it can stay hidden under a six-inch layer of dust for all eternity. I could not give less of a care.

Vacuuming. I used to vacuum 3 times a week. Now I vacuum once a month and tell myself I’m not doing it more often because it “scares the cat.”

Cleaning the bathrooms. Okay, bathrooms do need to be cleaned regularly, and they need to be cleaned well, because otherwise that’s just gross. But since I’ve gone back to work, I am cutting myself a *little* slack in the bathroom department. Now, instead of washing my towels every few days or so, I let them age like a fine wine. A fine wine that smells like a moldy hobo.

Trash. Changing the trash, which used to happen daily, has now become a fun game that I like to call “Mexican Standoff.” My husband and I spend days watching the garbage crawl out of the trash can and up the kitchen wall. Whoever gives in and takes out the bag is the L-O-S-E-R.

est. 1975 reexamines the importance of housekeeping after returning to work. #SAHM #WAHM #cleaning #housekeeping #funny #humor #est1975 #est1975blog @est1975blog
WHO WILL CAVE FIRST? NOT I!

Laundry. I used to keep on top of our laundry. Not anymore. Nowadays I don’t do laundry until we’re all wearing bottom-of-the-barrel underwear and irregular “Simpsons” socks from Family Dollar. Even then I just wash whatever shit is laying on the floor next to the machine, which is usually some completely useless combination of a leg warmer, 59 pairs of tightie-whities, and one of my husband’s dress shirts. And what’s that, you say? Let the damp load rot in the machine for a week? Don’t mind if I do.

Mopping. My previous regimen was what I would describe as “mop early and often.” You could run your finger across my kitchen floor and not pick up a speck of dirt. Now? “Eh, no one’s going to notice that dried blob of pumpkin guts from Halloween two years ago. And even if they do, so what? Are the Housekeeping Police on their way? Am I going to have to pay a fine? No? Then who gives an ever-loving shit.”

Surface cleaning. I mentioned that I used to be a stickler for surface cleaning. Now I subscribe to the philosophy that since my tables and counter tops are always covered with crap anyway, what’s the point? No one ever sees them. (With regards to the TV screen, the important thing is that I can still *almost* tell what’s happening underneath all of the snot smears and Nutella fingerprints.)

est. 1975 reexamines the importance of housekeeping after returning to work. #SAHM #WAHM #cleaning #housekeeping #funny #humor #est1975 #est1975blog @est1975blog
The usual state of my counter tops. Also, feel free to straight up ignore the bottles of absinthe in the background. We aren’t that kind of family. *cough*

Organizing. It didn’t take long for my opinion about the organization of closets and drawers to go from “a place for everything and everything in its place” to “ain’t nobody got time for that.” Pajamas are now shoved in with underpants. Shoes are piled in a jumble on the closet floor. Toys lie wherever they were when last used. Why put that shit away when it’s just going to come right back out again?

Cleaning up cat barf. What cat barf? I don’t see any cat barf.

Essentially what I’m saying here is that if you’re a stay-at-home mom, and you’re entertaining thoughts of going back to work while at the same time maintaining an impeccable household, think again. Even if you end up working at home like I do, your threshold for what constitutes good housekeeping is still going to plummet. You just won’t have enough time to juggle everything.

And I’m here to recommend that you just OWN IT. RELISH IT. MAKE IT YOUR OWN.

Yes, your standards of cleanliness may not be what they once were. But you know what? A certain degree of freedom comes along with that. The freedom to slack a bit. The freedom to say “fuck it, the laundry can wait” when you’re feeling tired and meh. The freedom to tell your kids to do the chores, even though you know their idea of cleaning the bathroom is “wiping the toilet seat with a piece of Charmin.”

The next time you find yourself clenching your butthole about the state of your house, relax that ass and release that stress into the universe. Even better, take a turn at contributing to the problem yourself. Clog a toilet and leave it for someone else to deal with. Scrape some jam-covered toast crumbs into the sink, hide the mess with a soggy paper towel, and walk away. Fling your kids’ Legos and Hot Wheels all around the room, then wait for someone else to step on them. It’s an adrenaline rush the likes of which you’ve never experienced.

I have to say, I’m glad I decided to go back to work. Who knew being a slob could be so deliciously liberating? *wipes peanut butter on wall*

hard-returngif

An earlier version of this piece was published on BLUNTmoms.

If you haven’t already done so, consider following est. 1975 on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Pinterest! I add fresh, hilarious material every single day.

hard-returngif

Photo credit:
“Washerwoman”: Gabriël Metsu; PD Art – US; Source: “Catalogue of paintings removed from Poland by the German occupation authorities during the years 1939-1945. 1, Foreign paintings” / comp. Władysław Tomkiewicz ; Ministry of Culture and Art. Warsaw 1950 Editor: Ministry of Culture and Art – Modified

sheet stains

There has been a smear of liquid foundation on my bed sheet for a week.

It looks like poop. And it’s right at about butt level, too. If someone were to accidentally wander into my bedroom, they would probably jump to the conclusion that I’d sharted during sex.

I know *I* would jump to that conclusion.

est. 1975 has a stain in her bed and she is not doing shit about it. #funny #humor #stain #bed #est1975 #est1975blog @est1975blog
My husband and I. About every single stain and/or smell that appears in our bed.

Fortunately, only my husband, my son, and I ever go into my bedroom. And I know this to be the case. So when I was doing my makeup in bed (why) and accidentally pumped my little bottle of foundation too hard and squirted it all over the sheets (dumb), I made the controversial decision to:

  1. Give it a half-assed blot with some toilet paper.
  2. Abandon the pretense.
  3. Toss the duvet over it and act like nothing ever happened.

I didn’t decide these things because I’m lazy (I am). I didn’t decide them because I’m gross (also yes). I decided them because I hate changing sheets with Every. Fiber. Of. My. Being.

est. 1975 has a stain in her bed and she is not doing shit about it. #funny #humor #stain #bed #est1975 #est1975blog @est1975blog
You see an unmade bed. I see the stuff of nightmares.

Now, now. Calm your tits. Don’t go running to the phone to inform Social Services that I’m an unfit wife and/or mother. I may be gross but I’m not that gross. I change the bed sheets just as regularly as anyone else. It’s just that in this particular instance I had JUST changed them. Like the DAY before.

And I really, really, really didn’t want to change them again.

I felt a *teensy* bit guilty about not doing it. Just a teensy. So I had a mini-conversation with myself in order to justify my reasoning:

Me: “You should probably change those sheets.”

Myself: “Don’t be ridiculous. Look at that. It’s just an itty bitty blemish on an otherwise pristine set of sheets.”

Me: “But it looks like poop.”

Myself: “So?”

Me: “So, poop is gross.”

Myself: “It might look like poop, but it isn’t poop. There’s no smell. There’s no germs. There’s no hygiene issue here.”

Me: “But…”

Myself: “Oh, so you really want to rip off all the sheets and fucking do all that work right now?”

Me: “No.”

Myself: “Well, then.”

Me: “ . . . ”

Myself: “Do we have any Cheetos? I’m hungry for Cheetos.”

And thus the sheets remain unchanged.

Oh, don’t judge. When my son was just a little guy with what I would characterize as an “unpredictable esophagus,” I was changing sheets constantly. That kid could barf, and he did it a lot. Every time he ate something funny. Every time he got stressed. Every time he caught a cold. Every time he took a ride in the car. Every time anything happened at all. He was a master of the violent and overly productive retch, and a disproportionate amount of this retching happened at night. In bed. On clean sheets.

est. 1975 has a stain in her bed and she is not doing shit about it. #funny #humor #stain #bed #est1975 #est1975blog @est1975blog
If my son was the Christ child.

Still. A mom has to do what a mom has to do. My husband and I swiftly came to an arrangement: he cleaned up the kid, and I cleaned up the sheets. Each of us did these jobs reluctantly, but we did them nonetheless, looking stoically forward to the day that our son would grow out of his incessant horking. Which he eventually did.

Then, what seemed like a blink of an eye later, the nightly nosebleeds started.

It turned out that my son had a bunch of blood vessels in his nose that were too close to the surface, and he ended up needing nasal cautery surgery to fix the problem. But it took us about a year to a) definitively diagnose the problem, b) try out non-surgical options, and then c) convince our son that he was not going go to into surgery and wake up dead.

A whole year. Of bloody pillowcases and sheets.

*shakes head*

*sighs*

Fortunately, my son is now six and he no longer pukes at the drop of a hat. The nosebleed problem is solved. There are no more overnight accidents (which I didn’t even bother to mention, because we all know what those entail.) And last but not least: our two elderly cats, who were also a dab hand at expressing biohazard all over our bed sheets, have at long last crossed the Rainbow Bridge. So I’m finally back on a “normal” routine of changing the linens.

So, a smear of foundation? It didn’t come from a butt. It didn’t come from a nose. It didn’t come from an unpredictable esophagus. It is NOT EVEN A THING. It can wait till the weekend.

IT. CAN. WAIT. Trust.

This, on the other hand:

est. 1975 has a stain in her bed and she is not doing shit about it. #funny #humor #stain #bed #est1975 #est1975blog @est1975blog
Aw hell no.

hard-returngif

An earlier version of this piece was published in 2014 on BLUNTmoms.

If you haven’t already done so, consider following est. 1975 on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Pinterest! I add fresh, hilarious material every single day.

hard-returngif

Photo credits:
“Woman Washing Kettle”: Artist Adriaan de Lelie (1755–1820); Title “Woman scrubbing a kettle”; Date 1796; Source/Photographer; http://hdl.handle.net/11259/collection.37848 — Modified
“Virgin and Child: Title “The Virgin and Child,” a painting attributed to the Master of Flemalle; Date 6 March 2013; Source ArtDaily.com — Modified
“Unmade Bed”: Date 18 April 2005, 01:04:01; Source Flickr; Author Liz Lawley — Modified
“Couple in Bed”: Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec (1864–1901); Title “In the Bed”; Date 1893; Source/Photographer The Yorck Project: 10.000 Meisterwerke der Malerei. DVD-ROM, 2002. ISBN 3936122202. Distributed by DIRECTMEDIA Publishing GmbH. — Modified

i know blog fu

est. 1975 shares her journey of enlightenment at #BlogU2015. She knows BLOG FU! #funny #humor #blogu2015 #blogu #est1975 #est1975blog

blog fu

noun | \ˈblȯg, ˈbläg-ˈfü\
: a fun, innovative form of networking and professional development that does not require wearing a pantsuit or acting like an uptight douchebag; started in 2014 in Baltimore by the organizers of The BlogU Conference

hard-returngif

the tenets of blog fu

1. Motivation. Have the desire to succeed, especially at personal goals such as having a nine-inch cleavage crack in every picture:

est. 1975 shares her journey of enlightenment at #BlogU2015. She knows BLOG FU! #funny #humor #blogu2015 #blogu #est1975 #est1975blog
The best way to show off your cleavage is to bug one eye practically out of your head while picking your teeth with an original Jeff & Jill Went Up The Hill business card.

2. Confidence. Believe in yourself, particularly when struggling to figure out cutting-edge innovations such as the selfie stick:

est. 1975 shares her journey of enlightenment at #BlogU2015. She knows BLOG FU! #funny #humor #blogu2015 #blogu #est1975 #est1975blog
Don’t blame poor Hall of Tweets for being completely mystified by modern technology. She is but a simple child of the 80’s.

3. Discipline. Follow directions, even when you are drunk and someone says “HEY! LET’S MAKE AN INCREDIBLY UGLY FACE IN THIS PICTURE!”:

est. 1975 shares her journey of enlightenment at #BlogU2015. She knows BLOG FU! #funny #humor #blogu2015 #blogu #est1975 #est1975blog
The Outnumbered Mother and I thought this was an ABSOLUTELY HILARIOUS idea at the time. Now we have regrets.

4. Perseverance. Keep working for what you believe in, like winning First Place in Nickelodeon’s #MiddleSchoolAwkward contest:

"middle school me" - est. 1975 takes her readers on a journey through the mind of her middle school self. #funny #humor #est1975blog @est1975blog #est1975 #middleschool #blogu15 #middleschooltothemax
The winning entry. Read more about it here.
est. 1975 shares her journey of enlightenment at #BlogU2015. She knows BLOG FU! #funny #humor #blogu2015 #blogu #est1975 #est1975blog
I got a trophy and everything! My son wanted to know what it was for. I told him I won a “World’s Ugliest Kid” contest.

5. Respect. Be willing to respect yourself and others, no matter how many watered-down appletinis may or may not have been consumed:

est. 1975 shares her journey of enlightenment at #BlogU2015. She knows BLOG FU! #funny #humor #blogu2015 #blogu #est1975 #est1975blog
I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that this is not the best photographic evidence of me and Jeff & Jill Went Up the Hill respecting ourselves. (Please note appletini.)
est. 1975 shares her journey of enlightenment at #BlogU2015. She knows BLOG FU! #funny #humor #blogu2015 #blogu #est1975 #est1975blog
Keeper of the Fruit Loops and Foxy Wine Pocket respecting the SHIT out of themselves.

6. Righteousness. Do the right thing, like licking honey mustard off of other people’s business cards so not a drop goes to waste:

est. 1975 shares her journey of enlightenment at #BlogU2015. She knows BLOG FU! #funny #humor #blogu2015 #blogu #est1975 #est1975blog
Stop Me If I Told You This MIGHT regret letting me take this picture, but I can’t know for sure.

7. Tolerance: do not allow emotions to overflow and affect character, even if you ARE dressed like Mary Katherine Gallagher:

est. 1975 shares her journey of enlightenment at #BlogU2015. She knows BLOG FU! #funny #humor #blogu2015 #blogu #est1975 #est1975blog
Elleroy Was Here is a SUPAHSTAH!

8. Community. Care for and be positive with others, PERIOD:

est. 1975 shares her journey of enlightenment at #BlogU2015. She knows BLOG FU! #funny #humor #blogu2015 #blogu #est1975 #est1975blog
Me and one of my favorite BLUNTMoms: Detached From Logic
est. 1975 shares her journey of enlightenment at #BlogU2015. She knows BLOG FU! #funny #humor #blogu2015 #blogu #est1975 #est1975blog
Brunch with (from left): McCall of the Wild, Quirky Chrissy, pixie c.d., Let Me Start By Saying, some waitress, and Hacker Ninja Hooker Spy
est. 1975 shares her journey of enlightenment at #BlogU2015. She knows BLOG FU! #funny #humor #blogu2015 #blogu #est1975 #est1975blog
In the photo booth (from left): with Mommy Back Talk, Outmanned, When Crazy Meets Exhaustion, Real Life Parenting, Questionable Choices in Parenting, Keeper of the Fruit Loops, and Foxy Wine Pocket
est. 1975 shares her journey of enlightenment at #BlogU2015. She knows BLOG FU! #funny #humor #blogu2015 #blogu #est1975 #est1975blog
After class (from left): The Shitastrophy, me, and Ponies and Martinis
est. 1975 shares her journey of enlightenment at #BlogU2015. She knows BLOG FU! #funny #humor #blogu2015 #blogu #est1975 #est1975blog
At the Nickelodeon Middle School to the Max party (from left): NO WAY. I AM NOT LINKING TO ALL THESE PEOPLE. FORGET IT. THIS BITCH IS TOO LAZY.

hard-returngif

So that’s that! I am now a blog fu Master.

I’d like to just say that there were so many more pictures, and that I had fun with so many more people, but I could not possible incorporate everyone and everything into one single blog post. I tried my best, but my frustrations with Photoshop and WordPress made me give up after about three hours. The lazy is strong with this one.

(It’s probably for the best. A lot of my pictures sucked ass. Trust.)