Fall Cleaning

I love the fall. Today all of our windows are open, and although there is still a bit of humidity in the air, the cool air is welcome! I found myself with the desire to clean today, probably because the coolness and open windows made me realize how much some of our rooms smell! I started in Ben's room and decided that we must quarantine that room to immediate family only. No one else will be allowed to go in there, much less sleep in there until we are able to remove the carpet, seal the floors and walls with KILZ, and possibly replace the beds and bedding. The room has served as Benjamin's toilet for the last year, and the stench is proof! It is very disappointing and discouraging!

I then made my way to the upstairs. This was supposed to have been cleaned by the kids two days ago...they spent three hours up there! There was no sign of any cleaning that had been done more recently than the last time I did it, which was months ago! In Joshua and Jonathan's room, I filled a trash can, found lost crayons and legos, provided a little organization to their puzzles which take up an entire corner of the room, and found all the clothes that on a daily basis they have no idea where they are!

Jakob's room was not bad, but when I opened his closet, I found the clothes that he was supposed to put away two weeks ago...they were still in the suitcase!! There was also an entire cubby full of garbage!

Then...my miss Mathilda's room. OK, this room also has an unmistakeable odor of urine! SIGH!!!!! She has been doing so well at night, or at least we thought! Her pajamas that were dry this morning still smelled like pee, so maybe she's going a little and it dries by morning. We have been taking both her and Ben potty in the middle of the night for well over a month. We did learn the other night that Ben might be getting up in his room and peeing on the bed or floor in his sleep. He was in our bed and stood up and peed on Tim while he was sleeping! Mattie's room was by far the worst in the entire house. Gum wrappers and feathers under the bed accompanied the strips of cloth and ribbon from one of her outfit accessories that she cut into little bitty pieces. The feathers were from the pillow that she cut open and emptied. The closet was full of clothes littering the floor. The little storage room that she uses as a nursery for her dolls was full of blankets, more clothes, garbage...yuk!!

The bathroom upstairs was next. Our children have been disassembling the fixtures regularly. I discovered that the cold/hot indicators on the sink were missing, the cup holder cup is broken, the soap dispenser cup also broken and the holder actually pulled out of the wall. The toilet paper holder, like all toilet paper holders in our house also pulled from the wall, lending many more opportunities for the enitre roll of paper to end up on the floor, in the toilet, sink or tub soaking wet, or just scattered in little pieces all over the place. There was a ring of scum around the tub from half a bottle of shampoo being used with each bath, and wet towels on the floor. The toilet tank lid was off, likely due to the fact that the toilet needs to be adjusted after each flush to keep it from running for hours. Pee of course does not always...in fact probably not often at all...make it into the toilet, rather down the sides and splattering the wall and floor.

How did my life become so full of disgusting hygeine issues? It's not like we teach our children to be this gross! I do admit that our room is not the tidiest room in the house, but that is because it is usually serving as a storage area, and my laundry room is far from clean, but that is because 99% of the time it also serves as a temporary drop site for things that are enroute to a more permanant location! I DO NOT pile garbage in corners of my house and shove things behind other things that are within feet of where they are supposed to reside! We certainly do not pee and poop anywhere but the toilet, so I really have no idea where that comes from!!!!! I pray that Joe does NOT find this nasty habit in the upcoming months! We may have to gut this house before ever selling it.

Clothing was removed and "hidden" from my children. Dirty clothes created 4-5 more loads for today. Crayons, books and toys also removed from their rooms. Furniture rearranged and garbage removed in anticipation of finding some kind of odor eliminator, or reducer in our case, being sprinkled over the entire carpeted area and maybe even the beds, and then a good vacuuming again.

School is about to start, so each of the kids will add two pair of pants, three shirts, 6 pair of socks, 6 pair of underwear and a new pair of shoes to their wardrobe. That is it...I am determined to make them go to school in their pjs if I have to this year to prove a point!!! DIRTY CLOTHES IN THE LAUNDRY ROOM, CLEAN CLOTHES PUT AWAY, SHOES ALWAYS PUT AWAY SO YOU CAN FIND THEM IN THE MORNING!

I think I'll also stop and pick up more good smelling room fresheners too. Eventually maybe I'll get the stink covered up at least! I think I decided that living in a big house may offer nice amenities, but it also offers more space to destroy, and more that needs to be cleaned, fixed, etc...:)

We did move ourselves outside this morning to play and work in the garden. I'm not sure if it qualifies as a garden anymore...there isn't much in it except weeds and bugs! I gave up on the organic pesticides and sprayed much of it down with "Eight" today. The grey beetles have numbered in the thousands out there for 5 weeks or more! We also picked some popcorn and a few peppers. We're excited that we have one pumpkin holding on! If it can survive the beetles, it is supposed to grow to be in excess of 50 lbs!!! I will be sure to take a picture of that if it happens!

The kids built a sandpit in the sandbox and filled it with water! They used Mattie as their dam, so when it was time to come in, the water flowed out as the dam got up and walked away. I bet they played out there for three hours straight! ALL of them together! We didn't even make them come in to eat because they were playing so nicely together. That has been unusual in the last couple of weeks. I can always tell when it's time to go back to school because they start trying to kill each other!

One week left of summer...not enough in my opinion, but it is probably time to rediscover some routine!