When you open a little yogurt container, open it AWAY from you. Inevitably, yogurt spits out. I’ve gotten yogurt on my shirt one too many times. Now I know.
Unload the bottom rack of the dishwasher first. Then, when you unload the top rack and all of the water dumps from the punts in the glasses or the lip of the Tupperware, it won’t dump on the dry dishes below. Less dishes to dry off.
Tidy your room at night before you go to bed. Hang up your clothes, put away your shoes, throw away your tissues from the night before. Its easier in the morning when you’re getting ready for work or school.
Save every freakin’ email. Two years from now, someone will argue with you about something and it takes the wind out of their sails when you say “Well, let me just pull up the email about that….”
Take your rings off when you wash your hands.
When you clean, start at the top and work your way down. Cobwebs, dusting lights/on top of the cabinets, wiping down cabinets, wiping counter tops, wiping baseboard, sweep the floor.
Use “waiting time” to tidy. That way, you don’t have to make time to do it later. While my bagel was toasting today, I put away the clean dishes on the counter and soaked and stacked the dirty dishes in the corner. Less I have to do this evening when I clean the kitchen. And back when I used to pump gas, I would set the thingy to automatic and clean all of the trash out of my car. I know you’re not supposed to re-enter your car while gas is pumping, so I’d just get the stuff out of the door pockets.
And speaking of soaking dishes, I have trained my family to follow one of my quirks. When the dishes start piling up and I need to put them in the dishwasher, but just don’t get around to it, I fill up one of the larger dirty glasses with steaming hot water and put all of the silverware in there, dirty side down. By the time I get around to putting that silverware in the dishwasher, the dried peanut butter/Nutella/mayo(gag)/butter has soaked off and I don’t have to rinse them.
Consistent reminders really do work with teenagers. Even though you feel like you’re just repeating yourself to a wall and they get all huffy and said, “Duh. I know!”. I see Kayleigh remember to turn the shower off BEFORE she turns the water off (it’s a rude awakening to have the shower blast down on me first thing in the morning when I turn on the water) and put the towel up over the tub when she leaves the bathroom. Gentle, consistent reminders.
At the grocery store, if you unload all of the freezer stuff together and the fridge stuff together when you check out, you don’t spend time running back to the fridge when you get home and unload stuff. If you have a good bagger, all of your cold stuff will be together. If you have a bad bagger, well, bag your own stuff next time.
I remember going to Kroger with Mom every Saturday morning for the weekly grocery shopping trip. I remember her standing there to write out her check and chatting with the cashier because she knew them all on a first name basis. And I remember the mentally disabled boy who would leave whichever lane he was on when he saw mom, to come bag her groceries. He loved football and they’d talk about the Oilers while he bagged and as he walked her out to her car. He was nice. Wonder where he is now?
I also remember if he wasn’t there, and the other baggers were busy, Mom would look at me and say “Make yourself useful!”. And I would. I’m a good bagger. And I still step in and bag when Todd and I do one of our huge grocery shopping trips and there are no baggers available. If the cashier has to scan and type and bag, it takes too long. I always get a surprised look and a thank you. Makes me feel good.
Now. Back to our list.
Um. I think I’m done.
You would think I’ve learned by now not to tell my mother I coming to visit her five months in advance. That’s way too much time her to think of all the things she wants me to help her with. It’s much better to just show up when she isn’t expecting it. Less time for her to compile a list.
I’m thinking about going home for a few days over Memorial weekend. I miss my folks. A whole bunch. And I need to be mommied for a while.