MRS. MURFREESBORO: To-do list clutters the new year

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Jeanne Bragg
Is it because it’s the first of the year that my mind is bouncing around with so many things to do? Or is it because we’ve been so busy since Thanksgiving that I feel so burdened?

Probably a little of both.

I find myself craving order so much these days. I think it’s because disorder was the rule of the day for so long.

When I asked my husband, Tommy, if he wanted to go to our vacation house in Knoxville for the weekend he said, “I think we need to recover first.”

I didn’t realize what he meant until a few calm days passed by.

Despite the fact we have gotten so much done – dismantled Christmas decorations, found a little order to the stacks all around, cleaned out the refrigerator – well, mostly – there is still very much left to do.

And we tackled one big “have-to” project last week. The rugs in this house haven’t been cleaned in a very long time, and we decided the time was now.

My son-in-law Alex, a contractor, is doing some construction work here, rebuilding a deck that is falling apart after 25 years among other things, and I decided to take advantage of his manpower to move the furniture around and pull rugs up for the cleaners.

This would have been an overwhelming task without Alex and his helper. They did it in minutes and took all the worry away.

When he asked, “Do you want to take the pads too?” We said, “Of course.” They must be as dirty as the rugs are.

So, rugs and pads were loaded into the car’s cargo area, the same trunk that three days earlier carted off those abysmal Christmas trees.

Some areas get dirtier in houses than other areas, and we picked the rugs that have the most traffic to clean.

When Alex rolled all of them up, a whole new set of problems emerged.

There were some very dusty areas to address, which we would tackle later. But despite the dust, it was amazing how clean everything looked with the rugs gone and how noisy it became without them as sound buffers.

While we were in the car taking them to the cleaners, Tommy noted how nice it was to finally be alone.

Usually, I drive and he talks business on the telephone.

But, he didn’t have any pressing issues that day. He even helped me lug along my cumbersome sewing machine that needed maintenance. Luckily, the dealer was less than a mile away from the rug cleaners.

The car became very dusty from the largest rug, and upon arrival at the the cleaners, they suggested we replace it.

They said the rug pad had gotten so brittle it was sanding the floor. We had noticed more grub than usual under this particular rug but had no idea what the culprit was.

I am writing this because if you also notice sanding, you’ll know wherein the culprit lies – a brittle pad.

After dropping the rugs off, we squeezed in a movie and had lunch together.

A fun field trip, as Tommy said.

When we arrived home, Alex had vacuumed, tidied everything up, and made us feel refreshed again, as opposed to the burdened-down, albatrossed Christmas “victims” who had lived here before.

I feel the fog lifting as the new year starts and the old one ends. And fortunately, it feels like home is beginning again to feel like a good place to be.

‘Til next week.
Read more from:
Decorating, Family, Holiday, Mrs Murfreesboro, Voices
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