Archive for housework

Apr
04

I Want a Grown Up House

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I’ve told you how I actually DO like my house. Now that the kids are (sort of) growing up, my mind has started to drift towards my fantasy of living in a clean, nicely decorated home. At this EXACT moment in time, I’d settle for clean. But I do have visions. Visions of beautiful hardwood floors. Of coordinating drapery and pillows. Someday (yes, someday…I keep telling myself) the girls will be old enough to appreciate the fact that this is MY house. And I would like to keep things finger print, marker, crayon and kool-aid stain free.

So, sometimes when I need to escape, I look at the nice things I would like. I found this website that’s full of fabric shades, valances and curtains. After fantasizing a bit on this website, my heart yearned to be in a grown up place!!! I really do spend a lot of my time at home. And how cool is that site? Pick the fabric, make it perfect. I’m gonna have to start making some more money in order to afford my fantasy. But that’s OK, I’ll work on that. Right now all the curtains I have in my house are from Target. And they’re not looking too swift. What is it with kids and curtains? They wipe their hands on them, twirl around in them. They’ve even tried to use them like Tarzan to swing on.

Maybe I’ve figured something out here. ::insert lightbulb:: If I get ALL valances, the kids couldn’t destroy them. Well, I guess it’s not that they COULDN’T, but it would be much more difficult. So, maybe I can start on my fantasy. Just gotta make some more cash. I got this far. I turned dreams of having a family, moving into a bit house in a nice neighborhood and owning a restaurant into reality.

I think I can handle curtains.

Categories : housework, parenting
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Mar
13

You: The Peeping Tom Seeing My Morning

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I don’t really know if my family and friends know what happens during a typical Heather morning. I can’t imagine that they do know. So, just in case anybody cares (and to make myself feel a little better), here’s how my morning went. Today was an easy one, because we didn’t have to leave the house at all. Well, just a quick run to the bus stop. So, here it goes:

  • 4:30 am – Wake up to see 3 year old in front of my face, asking for milk. Realize that I’m in Becca’s bed, and fell asleep around 9:15.
  • 5:00 am – Think that it’s a good idea to wake up and get some stuff done. And I actually wake up.
  • 5:00-5:45 – Spend some quality time with the husband, who has not gone to bed yet. He also thinks that it is currently still THURSDAY. I continue to correct him, telling him that it’s FRIDAY.
  • 5:45-6:00 – Watch 15 minutes of the news. Wish I looked as good as Sonni Abatta.
  • 6:00-6:25 – Watch ‘The Office.’ Laugh. It was a good one.
  • 6:25-7:00 – Make large pot of coffee. Check e-mail. Log in the numbers from the restaurant last night. Prepare deposit. Figure out the change order. Update our POS system for Friday specials.
  • 7:00-7:05 – Drink more coffee. Smoke another cigarette
  • 7:05-7:06 – Start vacuuming a plethora of nerds candy from the family room. Realize that it’s 7:06, and decide I need to shower
  • 7:06 – 7:35 – Wake Becca. Iron her outfit. Wake her again. Brush teeth, shower, greet crazy-haired Chloe, help Becca into her tights and dress. Come downstairs. Finish vacuuming aforementioned nerds.
  • 7:36 – Yell upstairs for everybody to hurry – we have 19 minutes
  • 7:36-7:55 – Pack a lunch, make a waffle, drink more coffee, have a smoke, find missing glove for Becca, brush Becca’s hair, grab almost-forgotten library book for Becca. Pack one pretty-looking sweetheart and one bed-head, pajama-clad, slipper-wearing sweetheart into car for 1 block ride to bus stop (it was cold!)
  • 8:05-8:10 – Turn show on for Chloe, sit down to write blog post for Downey’s House
  • 8:10-8:11 – Get Chloe a banana
  • 8:11-8:30 – Finish blog post, check some forums and twitter. See that CafePress is down. Complain about it on twitter
  • 8:30-8:31 – Put another television show on for Chloe
  • 8:31-8:45 – Hang out with Chloe, tickling her until she begs me to stop
  • 8:45-9:05 – Finish up with checking sales and stats online. Look up code numbers for the liquor I’m about to order
  • 9:05-9:06 – Get Chloe some strawberries
  • 9:06-9:15 – Order the liquor, enter amount into Quickbooks
  • 9:15-9:45 – Help Chloe make Kool-Aid for her ‘Lemonade Stand.’ A lemonade stand where there are two customers: Me and a small stuffed bear. Play lemonade stand.
  • 9:45-9:55 – Start dusting and cleaning the glass in the family room. Decide I’m not in the mood to really do much more cleaning right now.
  • 9:55-10:05 – Spend 10 minutes searching for a copy of our new menu that Tony wrote revisions on. Finally give up, and hope I remember the revisions.
  • 10:05-10:10 – Take phone call from the restaurant
  • 10:10-10:11 – Start menu revisions
  • 10:11-10:12 – Cut up an apple for Chloe
  • 10:12-10:20 – Work on the revisions some more
  • 10:20-10:22 – Help Chloe in the potty
  • 10:22-10:30 – Finish with the revisions. Hope I got them all.
  • 10:30-10:33 – Re-wash the laundry I left in the washing machine overnight. Freshen up clothes in dryer
  • 10:33-11:00 – Print up a copy of the fixed menu. Remember that I also need employment apps printed up. Do that. Deal with my desktop and what my security scan found.
  • 11:00-11:20 – Fold the laundry with Chloe. Yes, it takes that long.
  • 11:20-11:23 – Sit down to sign our corporate tax returns
  • 11:23-11:24 – Get Chloe some carrots
  • 11:24-11:30 – Decide to boil some eggs. Smoke a cigarette
  • 11:30-11:45 – Fart around on the internet. Still annoyed that CafePress is farked up.
  • 11:45-11:50 – Sew up the back of Chloe’s Build-A-Bear
  • 11:50-12:00 – Get the eggs from the stove. Decide to write this post.
  • 12:00-12:03 – Make toast for Chloe
  • 12:03-12:10 – Continue with post
  • 12:10-12:11 – Get a hard boiled egg for Chloe
  • 12:11-12:16 – Continue with post
  • 12:16-12:17 – Make witty remark on Twitter. Well, I thought it was witty
  • 12:17-12:20 – More blog post
  • 12:20-12:22 – Get Chloe some Kool-Aid
  • 12:22-12:30 (now) more blog post.

So, there’s my morning so far. The thrilling life of a work-at-home-business-owner-mom. You know, throughout this time line, there’s the conversations I have with Chloe. Well, they’re not really conversations. It’s more like a question and answer period. That lasts, um, all day. These kinds of mornings are actually my favorite. I get some business stuff accomplished, get some housework (sort of) accomplished, I get to be social with my online friends, and I get to hang out with my Chloe.

Now, I’m gonna go and make myself some egg salad. I did sneak a granola bar in sometime around 8:00. But I’m hungry!

Want to follow me on twitter? I’m at twitter.com/hdowney

Feb
28

Wait – Let Me Tie My Apron Strings

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In my entire life, there is not one single person who would think ‘Suzie Homemaker’ when they heard my name.

Not one.

And that’s fine with me. I never wanted to be the kind of wife who has her apron, heels and red lipstick on with dinner on the table and a martini ready when her husband comes home. Nah. I’m way too independent.

Cleaning house when you’re single, living with another adult, or married just isn’t that bad. I mess it up, I clean it up. You mess it up, you clean it up. We’ll split the stuff that needs done together (garbage, laundry, vacuuming etc.). However, since I’ve been at home with mini-me and mini-Tony, it’s been a little bit more difficult. There are two little creatures, messing everything up at all moments of the day. They’re quite good at it. I’ve really had to spend a lot of time here in the house. And I really like it to be clean. I don’t require spotless and sparkling. But I would like to have, at minimum, the APPEARANCE of clean.

I have also realized, in my semi-old age, that they only way I am productive is if I have a to-do list. Honestly. I get completely distracted by small things even WITH a list. Without a list, I’d spend ALL day playing with the kids, watching Oprah and using StumbleUpon. I get a certain amount of satisfaction just crossing something off that list. It is very rare if one day’s list gets finished in one day. But, at the end of the day, I try to start a list for the next day.

How do these two topics come together? Well, I’ve found a great cleaning to-do list. Actually, an old friend of mine found it, and emailed me the link. From what I can tell, this list was created by a mom who also home schools her children. It only costs $8, and she has each day on a page. She has your regular every day stuff, weekly stuff, and (this is what I always forget) the stuff that you only do every few months. I’ve only been using it for a week, and I’ve found that I tweak it a bit. I add my work and personal chores on there, too. My old to-do lists ALMOST NEVER including cleaning. I would do some, when I felt like it. Which meant that I hardly every did things like clean the top of the fridge and organize my closet. This list took all of the thinking out of cleaning. I mean, I think enough with all of my other endeavors. I don’t have time to THINK about cleaning.

So, here’s a link for the to-do list. It comes in a few different formats, and gives you an entire year. Yeah, I know that tomorrow starts March. But better late than never. Click here to view more details. She has it available with or without a Bible verse. Hey, whatever floats your boat. Personally, I’m not so much a bible girl. If you end up using this list, let me know! Or, if you have some other kind of great idea to keep your house in a semi-clean state, feel free to share that, too!

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Categories : housework, motherhood
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The snow in my yard has melted. I no longer have a 5 inch thick slab of ice to drive over to get into my driveway. The furnace is not on for 59 minutes out of every hour. But I don’t want to get too excited. This IS Pittsburgh and the date is only showing February 8. But I’m definitely enjoying the warm-ish temps. I looked at the 14 day temperature trend, and it sort of looks like going down the hill on the Jackrabbit at Kennywood. So I will enjoy it while it lasts. And possibly even wash all of the salt off the car. Possibly.

We headed to my sister-in-law’s house yesterday (I have 8 SIL’s!) for a small party for our 16 yr old nephew. It’s nice to have a big family – and the girls really enjoyed seeing their aunts and cousins. Life is definitely getting easier with these two girls. They play together nicely and are very independend. I actually got some nice adult conversation in last night – which is a rare thing for me! Even though I’m feeling the beginnings of a cold (sore throat and a general blech feeling), I still met with Fitty last night. At 11:15 p.m. no less. It was either clean up the tornado of toys or deal with Fitty. It was a pretty easy choice. Wii Fit age yesterday? 31 – I’ll take that. I DO have some sore calves, thighs and upper arms. But sore in a good way. I only wince when I try to walk up the stairs.

Tony and I are taking the girls to the Carnegie Museum of Natural History today. Chloe learned about dinosaurs in preschool last week, and Becca has been asking quite a lot of questions about mummies. And this is the first Sunday in a while without any football (except for that week between playoffs and the Super Bowl – and we went to Ikea and dinner that day). I was surprised how expensive it is, though! $15 for an adult and $11 for a child (although I think they are running a promo right now for half off kids through February 27th). I’ll fill you in on how everything goes. Speaking of the girls, I handed them a huge Oriental Trading catalog yesterday. They have spent at least an hour just looking at everything. Thanks for the catalog!

Well, NOW I must go deal with the toy tornado. And laundry. I’m determined to come home later today to a clean(-ish) house. Have a great day!!!

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Sep
10

I shouldn't be doing this…

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Right now I’m supposed to be cleaning my office. I am oh so good at procrastination. The papers are everywhere, kids books on the floor and there are two CD/DVD organizers laying on my desk just waiting to be filled. Everything that needs to go in them is scattered. All over. Oh well.

I have just a few little notes about life over the past week or so. Maybe I’ll go in chronological order:

Last Saturday my hubby went to the Pitt game. Home opener. He had a great time and took a cab home. The next day he shows me this beer coozy (you know, to wrap around it and keep it cold). But this one doesn’t just say ‘Pitt’ on it. No…this is a super fantastic invention. And I can’t believe that I didn’t think of it. It has two really strong magnets on the back of it, and they’re covered with a piece of pleather. That way, when you’re tailgating you can just put it on the car. It actually holds en entire full can of beer. So simple………

Sunday night I had girl’s night out. Nice dinner at the Grand Concourse, drinks outside at Bar Louie, and then a jaunt into the South Side and we headed to Dee’s Cafe. Felt good to get back to drinking and smoking…no matter how bad it might be for me. For just those mere 8 hours I had no responsibility. Nice. Of course, there were 6 moms. What did we (mostly) talk about? Kids and kid/family related stuff.

OK, while I was writing this post here’s what happened: I had Chloe (2) come up to me and say ‘turds.’ She did not have a diaper on. So, I asked “Where?”, and she led me to the family room. Diaper on the floor, full o’ turds. At least none had wondered onto the carpet. So, I did the whole potty-diaper change thing with her. Then Becca (4) wanted a peanut butter sandwich. Cut into a circle. Of course, then Chloe wants one, too. So I made two peanut butter sandwiches. The point is, if you’re reading this you would imagine that I’m sitting at my computer just typing away. Not exactly.

Well, I’ll have to catch up on some more later….I’m actually going to start to clean! By the way, if you’re looking for Halloween shirts, I’ve started a new blog at halloweentees.wordpress.com
I’ve picked out shirts that I like. The one is quite funny, and I think I’m actually going to purchase it. Here’s the link: 333 Half Evil

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