Life Laundry

By Alison June 14, 2010 13 Comments 3 Min Read

Oh Housekeepers I am in such a muddle.
This muddley state visits me every so often and when it does I find myself quite unable to get a grip on the usual measure of things, so letters go unposted and bills un-paid. Stacks of this and that start multiplying all by themselves and if I take a minute or two to breathe deeply, I notice to my utter horror, that in the effort to get through the days, love my son, hold up my rather hectic social life and be omnipresent at BrocanteHome, I have been cirmumnavigating a pile of pint-sized shoes at the front door for over two weeks now. This m’dears is the road to Rack and Ruin.
While I have taught myself not to batter myself around the head with a frying pan whenever loving life gets in the way of loving my house, there comes a point where comfort and chaos collide and it becomes nigh on impossible to love life if household neglect has reached such a degree that merely living has become a challenge all by itself.
Enough already Housekeepers. As I plan to TRASH IT or TREASURE IT right alongside you, I consider it absolutely necessary to spend today GETTING A GRIP on myself and my current rather lacksadaisical attitude to everything from the three bags of sand and cement currently serving time in my dining room to the eyebrows so overgrown they are almost a Frida Kahlo style unibrow (which wasn’t pretty on her and trust me, sure ain’t pretty on me).
You see readers, we can’t even begin to throw ourselves into a new project while we are living in a state of chaos. Today is the day we have to call time on laziness and doziness and busy-ness and -and domestic blindness and tackle all the silly little bits of nothing that are standing in our way of seeing a path through to tomorrow, let alone a path to peace at Christmas!
Today is the day we have to pick up the frozen pea hanging out under the freezer. Post that letter to a friend. Wash the dogs blanket, plant out those bulbs, ring the gas board and SHOUT, move the books piling up at your bedside, shift the blackcurrant juice stain on the living room carpet, refuse that invitation, get a new kitchen tap, check the passports, find the necklace you plan to wear to the wedding, move the recycling bin off the front path, throw out the weekend’s newspapers, tell the kids a firm but final NO, take the quilt to the cleaners, return the library books, climb under the sofa to grab that lost bit of lego, put the dvd’s back in their cases, book the doctors appointment, and (damn it) give the loo a thorough going over.
Today is the day we have got to give short thrift to the flotsam and jetsam blocking the plughole of our our lives and make space in our heads to make space in our homes. We can’t begin to TRASH IT or TREASURE IT if we are bothered by a list of teeny tiny bothersome jobs that are standing in the way of allowing us to see the bigger (probably even messier!) picture!
Today stop procastinating and get brave: do all the rubbish jobs.  Do them one after another and don’t dilly dally on the way. Concentrate instead on how wonderful we are going to feel this evening when the weight that is all that we choose to ignore has been lifted!  Do the rubbish jobs today, take a long, pampery bath this evening and tomorrow perform a diddy, done in a day, version of the Seasonal Scrub, so your efforts on Wednesday aren’t hampered by a sudden, all encompassing urge to clean in an effort to escape the emotional horrors of clutter-busting the BrocanteHome way…
Ok? If I can do it, so can you.
I’m off to post a pile of letters while the washing machine runs through a lemon and vinegar hot wash. Where will you start?


  1. Laura says:

    I painted the bathroom ceiling – a job I had procrastinated over for weeks. It only took 30 minutes when I got myself motivated!
    My recent post Launchpad Relaunch

  2. Victoria says:

    Alison sometimes it's like you see into my soul!! I've been so sloth like since I moved into the flat but I think I'm finally getting to the stage of finding my motivation…. interior inspiration and finally tackling the to do list of things I've been putting off for ages… beside my is a pile of parcels which will be deposited at the post office on my way home from work…. there is a list of things to be done at home this evening… I'm ready for whatever you throw at us!
    Victoria xxx
    My recent post What I'm Reading – Week 24

  3. Sasha says:

    My husband is even joining in! He finally got round to cutting out a tree root that has been lifting paving slabs on the patio for years, and replacing the garage door lock that had lost it's keys 12 years ago!!! Ok, so the imminent house move has prompted these jobs finally un-put-offable, but even he admits to feeling so spurred on by these achievements. So, today we are tackling the loft! Just starting with getting out the big things that will make maneouvering up there possible to sort and chuck. It will take more than one day, but daughter is away on school trip for week, so perfect time to chuck those things without input or dispute! Think I will put the washing machine AND the dishwasher through a hot lemon and vinegar wash while we're at it too!

  4. Beth says:

    I needed a little encouragement this morning. Today, after I finish work, I finally get the stains out of my bedroom carpet. But don't tell them I said that, I want to catch them off guard…

  5. Debbi says:

    Sometimes you have to get downright irritated to get started, don't you? My first stop will be to undo what the weekend has wrought. If I have time then before my silversmithing class this afternoon . . . {I know! So exciting! Silver bracelets on schedule today!} . . . then I will try to haul furnishings upstairs to my "studio", which I am just in the process of building. A girl needs a pretty place to house her soldering irons and pliers after all. {so giddy!} Thank you for the little boost {better than a shot of caffeine} before I begin!

  6. Lynda says:

    Ah, well, since we've had 23 hours notice that the window fitters will be arriving at 7.45 tomorrow morning, I don't have a lot of choice apart from shift all the stuff that will be in their way and wrap shelves to keep the dust out…. and not much else!

  7. Carlie says:

    Heavens to Betsy! It sure is that kind of day. I'm terribly glad to see this post though. I am with the reader above who said that it is better than a shot of caffeine. MOTIVATION! I'll have another helping, thank you!
    Today I:
    finally put away the stack of laundry teetering off the blanket chest at the foot of my bed, searched Ebay for a jump seat for our van, started addressing my thank you notes for baby gifts, Windexed the sliding glass door and now I plan to actually call the company that made the composter and then schedule that eye check-up I've been putting off since Christmas time! EEP!
    My recent post Miq The Fairytale Genius

  8. I just KNEW I'd found my Vintage Housekeeping soulmate when I stumbled upon your blog.
    There must be something in the air, because yesterday I too declared war on the Incompletions littering the surfaces of my house and lurking on closet top shelves ready to drop on my head.
    I also (somewhat rashly, I fear) publicly committed to a 30 Day Blogging Challenge – so Day 1 will cover my Vanquishing the messies; victories over dustbunnies and throwing open the Windows of my life to allow lusciousness to flow in.
    It's going to be an Utterly Delicious day!
    Bliss and blessings,
    The goddess known as Jacqui
    My recent post 30 Day Challenge and 6 month Progress Report

    1. Brocante says:

      And Jacqueline? The very first Trash It or Treasure It PDF should be landing in your in-box any minute now…

  9. Gill says:

    What? Am I ALREADY late!!
    Well, I have finally got to the bottom of a large build up of ironing, I have written an overdue letter and I have nearly finished planting out my sweetpeas…I need about 12 more stakes for them to twine up, so its off to the hedgerow for me! I'll take the pile of newspapers to the recycling bin with me as I go and post the letter and return the library books tomorrow, if I have my car back from the garage where its having a new exhaust fitted. I shall tidy the childrens shoes by the door to save falling over them and ah yes…I really need to clean out my fridge as it is defrosting onto the kitchen floor all by itself. Hmm, time to get going…Gill ; )

  10. Gill says:

    Oh, I forgot…I just tipped out the contents of my "everything else" drawer in an effort to find my necklace (yes, truly) and only got it half stashed back when I stopped to make lunch. Perhaps I'll start there after all. Gill.

    1. Brocante says:

      Heavens Gill, that's my trick! You sound more like me than I do…
      Go check your in-box… your first assignment should be waiting for you…x

  11. ~Gretchen says:

    Goodness! What an invigorating message! I'm just off to finish cleaning and stocking all of the goodies from a huge weekend picnic. All the equipment has been returned, the borrowed ice-chests have been cleaned and prepped for their respective homes, and now…time to turn my attention to my own home. Ah…at last. Everyone have a productive–and of course, puttery!–week!

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