About 80% of the people I know would describe their house as “comfortably lived in.” That title is not always accurate. I remember some people Mr. Ivy knew that described their house that way and a couple of years later, Child Protective Services came in (this woman also described herself as a great mom, heh) and what they found was a house so filthy that it made the news. Complete fabrications notwithstanding, I think most people who call their house “comfortably lived in” are really describing the level of clean that they are comfortable with.
Take my grandma on my mom’s side. Before her hoarding (child of the Depression) got ahold of her, she described her house as comfortably lived in. Now, my cousin and I put a quarter on top of one of her shelves to see how long it would be before she dusted them and it stayed there 2 years before he and I came up a quarter short at the candy store and I raced back to grandma’s to get it. 10 years later I helped her pack to move to Tennessee and that shelf was still not dusted.
But grandma’s not dusting didn’t mean she ran a dirty household, really. You could always count on her bathrooms being spotlessly clean and smelling nice and she never left a dish dirty her entire life. See, her comfort level included having a clean bathroom and kitchen, but not having her shelves dusted.
My other grandma, on the other hand, not only wasn’t a fan of dusting, but she wasn’t a huge fan of dishes either. You could come into her house at any time and pretty much guarantee that there’d be at least one or two dishes in her sink. Not that she’d let them pile up and her kitchen would get call-the-health-department dirty, but unlike my other grandmother, she didn’t get things right away.
I am not a natural housekeeper, but I grew up in a spotlessly clean house and I strive every day to be more like my mother, who is an excellent housekeeper. My problem is, I’m random. You could come into my house at any time and never know what you’ll find. It might be spotlessly clean (less likely, unless I know you’re coming, haha), it might be comfortably lived in (most likely) or it might be call-the-health-department dirty. (only likely if I’m depressed or sick)
So, Home Eccers, this begs the question: how would you classify your house? What’s important to you that it’s clean and what can you leave for awhile and not get too worried about? What could you try to be better at? One thing I’m working on is being like my one grandma and not letting dirty dishes sit.