Today the downstairs of my house resembles the aftermath of an explosion in a toy factory. In order to breastfeed the baby I have to clear a path to the sofa, pushing aside crayons, dinosaurs and the occasional Cheerio. “Thank the lord the cleaner is coming,” I think. So shoot me, I do have a cleaner that comes each week. Although ‘Saint’ would be a better job title.
Sadly, though, the cleaner is not coming. She gets in touch to say she’ll be with me tomorrow. “Dammit,” I think. I have a friend and her son coming for lunch. I detach the baby and do a hatchet job on the house. Quick wipe of surfaces, quick empty and reload of dishwasher. Then insanity strikes. I decide it is a good idea to make cupcakes.
As I’m running around the kitchen getting prepared, I realise that the floor is a bit crunchy underfoot. I have failed to hoover or mop the kitchen floor, and it has crossed the line from ‘lived in’ to ‘venue of South East London mud wrestling championships.’ No time to rectify though, because the doorbell rings.
I apologise for the state of the house as I welcome my friend, and continue to make the cupcakes. In my haste I drop the electric whisk on the floor. Do I wipe it clean? Of this I am unsure. Possibly I continue whisking.
Our conversation turns to the morning’s events, and I remember that my 4-year-old had run into the bathroom this morning to show me a still-alive three-legged mouse trapped in some tupperware. In retrospect I am not sure why I shared this information.
“Bloody cat,” I say.
“Where did he find it?” asks my friend.
“Oh, in here,” I say truthfully, gesturing absent-mindedly at the kitchen floor.
Before she leaves, I offer her some cupcakes. “No you enjoy them,” she says generously. Suddenly it dawns on me. I have invited a friend to lunch, prepared in a kitchen that was home to a bleeding three-legged rodent not four hours previously. And the floor is probably dirtier than the local bar.
I guess it’s official then; I suck at homemaking.
Thank god I’ve got some delicious cupcakes to make me feel better.
This post first appeared In the Powder Room