This is where it all began folks. I got a ton of questions about my Saturday ritual, and this will be our first Manic Saturday as a team.
I'm posting my list, and then your assignments. You are all doing such an awesome job, I trust you to make modifications as you see fit, and if you want to tackle my list too, and get all manic, that's fan-freaking-tastic.
Some suggestions for going absolutely crazy:
*Blast the music Jacob and I posted, or anything fresh and that you would never want anyone to know you listen to--even if it means New Kids on the Block yo, I mean it. Hangin' Tough might just get those window tracks clean. NO, and I mean NO melancholy bullshit mixed in. No Alison Krauss, no Tracy Chapman, no Aimee Mann. Seriously, there will be none of that on Manic Saturdays.
*Schedule a two hour phone call with your best friend from London at 8am, and see what you can get done while you bear your soul without your kids hearing, rushing from room to room. (This ended up being two cloves [I needn't dangle a carrot as I've instructed you to do, for I'm desperate to clean, unlike sane people], shaved my legs, did two loads of laundry, dusted the entire house, swept laundry room, organized computer desk, washed windows and mirrors, stripped the beds, and even chatted with my friend's Dutchy dish [swoon].)
*Schedule lunch with a friend at 2pm.
*Sleep from 7am-8am, getting a late start, and then get honey everywhere while making tea, even though you used the precision of a fucking surgeon. God, what is wrong with honey? Obviously that made me feel like my entire house is crawling in scabies.
*Can't turn on my iPod because I'm awaiting my phone call. Must churn up some good old fashioned motivation. Somehow, gmail chat isn't cutting it.
*Withhold your glass of wine/clove/guilty pleasure of choice until you reach self-imposed juncture in today's tasks. This sucks ass, but it works, and it will make you manic, and possibly, foam at the mouth.
*Absolutely accept any and all offers for someone to take your kids out today, even if it's the hobo in MC Hammer pants who knocked on your door to ask for pop cans and/or if you need your lawn mowed (but you need to provide the lawn mower). Even him.
*Promise your kids ______________ by this time ______.
*Invite someone over for dinner.
*I say if your kids are old enough to help, get their precious little asses going. Tip: Older kids respond incredibly well to their own checklists. That cuts out interruptions and makes them feel helpful. And why not instill a love of crossing off lists now? I however really get so much more done if I can work independently. Make no mistake, I ADORE Quinn and Reilly, and at 9 and 10 they don't need constant attention, but Saturdays work so well because they're soaking up time with their Papa, and I can get into the zone with no guilt.
(Smooth transition...my UK friend called, so you've had plenty of time to drink your coffee and languish prayerfully hoping I'd forgotten to get out my whip!)
MY SATURDAY LIST (and first time tackling a Saturday with tea in lieu of coffee):
You guys can take this or leave it, it's merely a representation of what can be done, in much less time than you'd think, and an illustration of how one day's worth of blood, sweat, and tears can make the rest of the week possible.
*You are not going to like this. It's time to brave your master bedroom. Seriously. You've worked so hard all week, I want each of you to retire to a clean, organized space tonight. We're talking stripping beds, remaking them, dusting end tables, dressers, sorting through all that extraneous shit that accumulates on your dresser/desk that you've deceived yourself into thinking is an orderly, necessary stack of papers. It's not. It's making me crazy. I know it's there. I want clean surfaces, clean floors which are then vacuumed, and I want this to be the day of reckoning for those awful must-dos like rearranging the hutch, dismantling the crib, or whatever your procrastinated chore has been. Clean windows, tracks, get under the bed, and you had better have a trash bag in your hand before you even cross the threshold. And for you Jennifers who have no qualms with sleeping on a sheetless bed, need I remind you that the threat of homicide is something I'm perfectly comfortable wielding? I would love befores-and-afters for your bedroom guys!
*Since you already hate me, I'm challenging to keep your momentum with your kids' room(s), or at least the worst one. All the same instructions apply. Getting rid of clothes, toys, cleaning windows, showing clutter who's boss, creating space or the illusion of space anywhere you can, all good. Extra credit for mamas dealing with bunk beds.
*You already have the Windex out, so in between bedrooms, just go from one end of the house to the next, and let this sun shine through with no smudges ruining the view. If you need to do the outsides, do it. Sure it's harder, and you'll tire sooner, but you'll collapse onto a clean, made bed, in a clean room, and you will sleep really well tonight. (But please don't tell me about it, I've whittled my two hours down to one broken one.)
That's it. Use my manic tricks, use my manic checklist if you dare, but I want those challenges done. This is what it's all about. And it absolutely doesn't take as long as you think. It's a zone, find it, and before long you'll notice you're wiping extra things down as you follow your orders. My Moxie infantry! March!
(Jacob has just emailed me his tricks for caring for cookware [what is cooking again?], and I will read it and post it in just a bit, so look for it.)