There are days when I just have to accept that even though I work it's so part-time I barely am a blip on my employer's radar; which means I am essentially a stay at home-r, and with that comes some retro-1950's elements to my lifestyle.
The very things I rolled my eyes at my mother for when I was sixteen, I find myself doing almost every day.
I'm more June Cleaver than Madonna, I'm afraid, on most afternoons. Snacks for the kids afterschool, homework, outside activities, dinner, bathtimes, bedtime. Yeah. Real edgy stuff.
Oh, I resist. I let things go around the house, I make said dinner way too late, I let Mr W do the laundry on the weekend when I'm at work (so hot to come home to someone else folding the clothes.) But for the most part, it's me doing the grunt work. He brings home the bacon, I fry it up in the pan. (Or order pizza.)
I decided I'd do the laundry yesterday, as Nolan, for some reason, needed clean shirts, and Mr W is going out of town Sunday so I thought I'd pitch in.
He was impressed when I told him at lunch that I was doing the laundry. And started searching the sky for clouds.
Oh, and that's not all.
I decided to polish/dust the piano. The seed of this little project got planted last week, when I was dusting our dining room chairs. They're old, and need attention I usually don't give them. I was forced to give them some love when I saw too much dust, too much evidence that Audrey eats and plays at this table (read: dried playdough and dried food), and realized it's been too long since I did the all-clean. Pledge worked fine, but I asked an authority who suggested...lemon oil. I bought some figuring I'd use it next time. Or maybe the time after that.
Because while I realize that it's really good for wood, I hate the mess lemon oil is, and the way the smell permeates you, too.
Then I remembered the same authority's trick for wearing rubber gloves while using it. So I decided to try it. And it worked great.
I'm rubbing away, piano gleaming, and totally enjoying the results. It was kind of soothing. Disturbingly soothing. I'm serious, children were running here and there, asking me questions: "Can I have some ice cream?" "Of course." "Can I have some chips?" "Absolutely." "On your bed?" "Mm-hmm, go for it."
Maybe it was due to the inhalation of too much petroleum distillates, as the label warns, but I was in the Miyagi zone, wax on, wax off--and contemplating the next item I'd polish. Bookcase? Dresser? I was a little surprised to find all that rubbing was also, oh my, ahm, embarrassingly enough, kind of sexy. You rub, it looks fantastic (gleaming !), how could anyone not be a fan of that? Rub, rub, rub, so simple--there may never be dust in my house again. (<--and that statement, my friends, is a sure sign I should have held my breath)
At any rate, I was still trying to finish before Mr W got home, because I: a) want to see if he notices on his own, and b) don't want to get caught--gloves? dusting? I'd just need an apron, pearls, and a martini, really, to complete that picture.
Of all days for him to actually come home on time.
He grins, as he pauses to admire my handiwork. I tell him I was trying to get it done before he got home, to maintain that myth that we have house-elves, you know. "Guess where I got this idea from," I asked, holding up a gloved hand. You think he'd guess "Martha Stewart" or "Queen of Clean" but he said, "Remo." And he was right.
I followed him to the bedroom as he changed clothes. I knew it from the grin on his face, but I had to confirm. (Okay, he's changing, given the opportunity, why not watch?) "You are a caveman. You dig it when you come home and I'm cleaning."
"It's so little-wifey."
"Come on, it's so little-wifey, and you dig it, admit it."
Now, there is the sign, that he's been married a long time. He's not taking the bait. He's being complimentary, but not digging a hole that will leave him in trouble. You have to applaud that kind of savvy.
He even gave me a hug.
I think that perhaps today, when he comes home, I will make sure I smell like a little Windex and Pledge, cleaning cloth in hand.
This time, I'm shooting for more than a hug.