It's a love/hate thing; Housekeeping and Holidays.

I love to have people over, especially if, as in the case of my ex-next door neighbour, I haven't seen them for a while. Now, for some people issuing an invitation is an easy job, you say "Come on over this weekend", they say "Yes", they come over and a good time is had by all.

On Planet Angel it is never quite that simple. I say "Come on over this weekend", they say "Yes" and then.....

I have to tidy the living room, dining room, kitchen and downstairs loo. Depending on work/ children's actions the week before, this can be a simple 2 hour job or a whole day marathon. I am not a dedicated housekeeper, much though I dream of it. So, yesterday found me collecting piles of 'stuff' from one room and burying them in another (they won't see my bedroom/ the bathroom/ the cupboard under the stairs, will

Frantic hoovering, much polishing with the gorgeously scented orange-glo wood cleaner (I love the scent of oranges in a clean room) and a little primping of cushions, setting of tables and preparing a wonderful roast leg of lamb, and I was ready for their arrival. I didn't know when the phone rang whether to hope it was them ringing to cancel because I was so shattered or be devastated if it was.

They came. It was lovely to see them. We moved away from them 5 years ago, but they are still friends. Life being how it is, we haven't seen them often enough and I'd forgotten how much fun they can be. They are Professional Holidayers, you see, and a meal with them is like a travellog, with tales of Jordan, China, Peru (this year), Australia, the West Indies and other points of the compass that make our Llyn Penninsula, Durham and Cheltenham (same three holidays for the past 4 years, and quite happy with three kids, thank you) seem really pedestrian. And before any of you sympathetic people say, "Well, it's different with kids"... they do it with two children under ten!
Like everything else in life, it goes to show that everyone is different. We made a conscious decision when we had DP that our holidays would stay in Britain. The thought of packing and lugging the amount of kit I would have felt necessary abroad filled us with dread. Also, I like the idea that our children know about their own country, and that when we do venture abroad, a time I feel is drawing steadily closer, they will be able to appreciate and enjoy the differences between home and wherever we go. And because our decision was a matter of choice rather than a measure forced on us by circumstance, I can sit and enjoy the traveller's tales without envy, and with a huge degree of respect for my ex-next friends. Bravo to their bravery, and bon voyage!

Oh, and now, the day after, I have a clean and tidy house to enjoy for a week, or at least until 4pm tonight when we arrive home from school..... Lego makes such a big mess, doesn't it, and I have two sons who love it....


  1. Impending visits always see a flurry of domestic activity here as well.

  2. Oh, I can soooo relate to this! It's good to have people over on a regular basis. Gives you a reason to clean the house. Love the before and after pictures.

  3. I love this quote
    'Cleaning your house while your kids are still growing is like shoveling the walk before it stops snowing.' ~ Phyllis Diller, Phyllis Diller's Housekeeping Hints, 1966


    'There was no need to do any housework at all. After the first four years the dirt doesn't get any worse.' ~ Quentin Crisp, The Naked Civil Servant, 1968
    You can just imagine what state my house is in!
    Take care,

  4. We have a love/hate relationship with Lego, the boys love it and my husband and I hate it. Mind you it's the later that buy the stuff so who's the fool???

    I love a BIG clean up, the one where you put everything away and get to vac all of the floor not just around the boy box. It's true what you say about enjoying it even more the following day.

  5. How refreshing to see a normal looking house for a change. I am always too much of a coward and only show my 'after' photos ;-)


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