April 10, 2009

The First Rule of Staying Clean

The house is MERELY half-clean---but all the areas that we cleaned have remained perfectly organized. This is because I have no CHILDREN here, which seems to be KEY to running an orderly home.

After only a coupla days of overhauling, my mother called and said to me in accusing tones, “IT IS SPRING BREAK?!??! WHY DIDN’T YOU TELL ME? I WANT MY GRANDCHILDREN!” She felt I was breaking the child labor laws and offered to whisk my children away for several days and cater slavishly to their whims.

I have my edit letter or BACKSEAT SAINTS and was eager to get to work, so I banished my children to her house with good cheer until Easter. Actually banished is not a fair word. I asked them if they wanted to A) stay here and continue the spring cleaning, or if B) they would rather go to their grandparents house to be fed purely on homemade waffles and buttered popcorn and allowed to play videogames until their very retinas jet blood and then be taken to play golf-putt.

It was a unanimous B vote, and I am already halfway through the first run at the first round of editing. I called to check on them and Maisy says the best part of this little trip is all the NOT CLEANING they have been doing. She was tired of getting “Dust Sneezles” up her nose.

She talks as if sneezes were alive things, little hidden beasts that are roused by the swiffer and who load themselves into one’s nose like bullets and then launch themselves out again. Preferably---in my dream universe---the Dust Sneezles would be launched into a Kleenex where they could recline in the soft crumple like Romans a a feast. I bet to a Dust Sneezle, a Kleenex in the trashcan is very like Florida+ a great place to retire.

Alas Maisy has nto mastered the art of containing a sudden Sneezle onslaught. Her Sneezles tend to land wherever the child’s face happens to be pointing and coating the just cleaned furniture and the dog and the face of her own mother in a fine sneeze-mist.

DO YOU KNOW Craigslist and free cycle are full of FREE RABBITS and FREE cages for rabbits and FREEEEEEE rabbit waterbottles? I am just saying.

But then I say if we got the CAGE free we could afford to purchase a truly EXCELLENT rabbit.

My friend Lydia has a rabbit and she says the secret to good rabbitry is buying a baby one and letting it be raised soley by a two year old human child. This was Lyd’s method, and she says she has a DREAM rabbit who never bites and who is patient kind loyal slow-witted long-suffering and true.

Me: Can people pick your rabbit up?
Her: Yes. By any leg.

OH stop dialling PETA. I am sure she was just being wry.

Posted by joshilyn at April 10, 2009 5:08 PM

Oh that made me laugh with great enthusiasm. By any leg. Fabulous ;)
Hope the kids have a great time at Grandma's!

Posted by: Heather at April 10, 2009 5:50 PM

Sneezles? Oh, that's just too perfect.
And isn't it nice that they got whisked away just in time for edits? The gods are smiling down upon you, eh?
Of course, you ought to ask your momma for her checkbook so you can pay laborers to come finish all the work, since she took away your free work force.

Posted by: dee at April 10, 2009 7:11 PM

The key to a clean house at MY house is also having the husband absent. He likes to let things get enormously messy so that he feels heroic when he cleans up. In the meantime, mess.

Posted by: kmkat at April 10, 2009 10:04 PM

Heh. The key to keeping my house clean - or tidy, at any rate - would be to send me away. I am more likely than my husband to clean something, but he is much more likely to tidy up (usually throwing away something of mine in the process).

Joshilyn, your household sounds like a whole lot of fun.

Posted by: Sandra Leigh at April 10, 2009 11:22 PM

Rabbits are extremely loyal pets. You should get one. Tell Scott the beloveds say so.

Posted by: nik at April 11, 2009 4:17 AM

You have to rescue a bunny before some nefarious game-eating person takes one for a free meal! Or is it only me who thinks that every time I pass a local "free bunnies" sign?

I once had a "used" hamster raised like Lyd's rabbit. He was the calmest, best hamster ever, and lived to be about 1,000 years old in hamster years!

Posted by: Brigitte at April 11, 2009 6:49 AM

I have seen some very nice rabbits at the county fair. If you do decide to drive all the way to almost-Chicago for your inevitable-rabbit, you're welcome to stay here. :)

Posted by: JulieB at April 11, 2009 10:50 AM

Yes, the only way to keep my house clean would be to a) sedate me and throw out all the stuff I'm going to either use or fit into someday and b) take away my keys so I can't get back in. I can't blame it on kids, husband, pets or even demonic forces. It's pretty much an illustration of the second law of thermodynamics: unless energy is added to the system, disorder spontaneously increases. And I prefer to use my energy to either re-read favorite books or try new cinnamon roll recipes.

The Dark and Dangerous Cinnamon Buns from "Whole Grain Baking" (King Arthur Flour) are very good and very satisfying. In case anyone hasn't chosen their recipe for Easter yet...

Posted by: Diane (TT) at April 11, 2009 2:52 PM

This is how I picked out our kitten from the masses of all other kittens. I picked him up by the scruff of his neck and I poked him and pulled on his ears and legs and yes, even his tail.

Other kittens freaked out just by the picking up part... but Ziggy just looked at me like "wha?" so we bought him.

When he's getting steamrolled by the two year old I feel a bit guilty, but she lets him go and he moves like, six inches away and sits back down again, so I think he secretly likes it.

Posted by: Heather Cook at April 11, 2009 6:38 PM

That is indeed the key. Someone, probably Erma Bombeck or Phyllis Diller, said "Cleaning the house while your kids are still growing is like shoveling the walk before it stops snowing."

So my next Spring Cleaning is scheduled for April 2018. I can hardly wait.

Posted by: alala at April 11, 2009 6:40 PM

None of my rabbits have ever bitten anyone. Rabbits prefer to run away from danger (their perception of what is dangerous) rather than to confront it.

Posted by: Trace at April 12, 2009 1:35 PM

I've seen the best way to get a rabbit is to go to a 4-H Achievement Days Barn/Show whatever in the spring/summer where all the little 4-H farm children are showing their bunny rabbits. IF it is anything like when I was growing up, mothers are always trying to sell baby rabbits after they're shown or even ones that aren't being shown.

Posted by: Lia at April 12, 2009 8:54 PM