Spring Cleaning: Time to declutter?


The mornings are a little lighter and the daffodils are smiling on the commute to work. They signify a new beginning. It’s the traditional time to Spring Clean but it’s hard when you’re a hoarder isn’t it?

I’m sentimental and I hold onto things in the name of nostalgia. An avid fan of “picture time”, I like to look back at old photos and see how far we’ve come since we were kids. Unfortunately, that means I am also reluctant to part with bountiful birthday cards that I’ve kept for over 20 years and ticket stubs for every cinema, theatre and gig that I’ve ever attended since my early teens. Yes, they take up an entire drawer under the bed. And no, my other half doesn’t see the point of them either. But, I think I’ll keep them anyway. Just in case.

At work, we’re moving premises this week to a newer, more modern place and preparations have been underway. I thought it’d be a good idea to have an emergency box containing a few necessities: the phone list (we don’t know extension numbers off by heart), cleaning wipes (how does everything get covered in crap?) paper & pens (to write stuff down that we’ve forgotten) sandwich shop menu (for our many breaks) and a screwdriver (just in case!). Believe it or not, I actually do know the difference between a flat blade and a Phillips. Lord knows what I needed it for; the removal men took down all our wall fittings and noticeboards.

Despite being a bit of DIY novice, I walked around with it and looked busy. The colleagues were suitably impressed. I suspect that I’ll be getting a tool belt in the ol’ Secret Santa this year. Oh, and the sandwich menu has been appreciated too….and that was just me. I think they would’ve preferred me to ruthlessly fill countless bin liners with unwanted paperwork and folders. I wanted to visit other departments and have a chat instead.

The process, of change at work, prompted thoughts about a big clean up at home. I came home on a mission. Spring coincides with new beginnings, right? Well, then, I thought, I’m going to transform my home. Albeit on a budget. I was feeling optimistic.

I thought about a facelift (my house, not me…).

There’s a supersize sale on, down at the DIY superstore. I was determined to get a bargain. My makeover radar spotted a few wallpaper patterns and after agonising searches, I was armed with an array of possible samples.

“Which one d’ya like best?”I asked.

He didn’t look up. He was on his phone.

“Either. You choose”.

“Shall we go with more of a shiny or matt finish? Do the colours with our furniture? I hope they’ve got enough rolls of this one”.

But, what was left of the patterned wallpaper in the bargain box, didn’t suit our house. Unless, of course, I wanted a living room wall full of footballs or Elsa from Frozen; it was slim pickings in the DIY closing down sale. They had one or two rolls and not enough of one pattern. We left with a reduced price doormat and some Eco lightbulbs. Not quite the whole 60 minute makeover I was intending.

Before we can think about decorating, a big clean is in order. But who is going to do it?


Who does the cleaning in your house?

I’m a modern woman. I work full time. He’s a man. And he works full time. We share the housework but we differ; I’m more about having things in the right place and tidiness rather than obsessive cleanliness. He would rather smell the scent of bleach. They say the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, right? Well, I’m sure my man would rather I continually bleached the kitchen sink than see me in lingerie. I’d rather create an ambience with a few Yankee candles whilst ignoring that pile of ironing towering over my book shelf in the spare room.

I don’t like ironing either. I know some of you people devote a couple of hours to it. Seriously? A whole afternoon? Get a cuppa tea or ring your friend instead. I iron as and when I need something. I’m not saying it’s right. That’s probably why I have to rock the ‘crinkle style’ because I haven’t had time to run the iron over my top. Let’s pretend it’s fashionable…

I’ve come to the realisation that I like the idea of a Spring Clean but we both agreed we’d rather be doing something else. Like going out for a walk. Maybe some reading or writing for me. Or drinking some gin. Or poking myself in the eye. Just anything else other than cleaning. Maybe I’ll just tidy up in time for the summer…

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