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Housekeeper: To Get or Not to Get?

As we celebrate 3 years of Yo! Mama’s Word this month, my Yo! Supporters who have been tuning into the blog since day one may remember my first post titled “How Can I Keep A Clean House?” (If not, type “house” in the search box and you can read this historical post). In that post, I shared how it’s a constant struggle to work full-time and keep up with the demands of keeping the house spotless. Now that I have 4 kids, one of which is a busy baby/toddler, AND we have all been home this past year, it gives my family a lot more time to…well…mess up! So recently, I gave in to the continuous battle and let Mike proceed with pursuing a housekeeper. We set some guidelines together of what we were looking for. If there are any “Martin” tv show fans out there that remember the episode of their search for the perfect housekeeper, we definitely agreed that there would be no booty shorts-wearing ladies or shirtless-guys servicing our home lol. We created the ideal list of things that needed to be done and Mike made a few calls around. Within an hour, he had received a call back and on short notice, there was a housekeeper that was deemed “new to the company” that was available in two days. Leave a pin right here as we’ll revisit that shortly. So the owner shared that the lady had serviced a home prior to ours and our home would be her second with the company. The owner expressed that she typically preferred to shadow the person in their initial visits but due to the timing, she was unavailable and trusted this worker as being more than capable of doing an excellent job. Say less, we’ll see her soon. Now Mike did ask how long it would approximately take to clean our home and if the lady would need a partner as we need some deep cleaning that would take some time. Normally, for me, it takes me a while to clean because I pay close attention to detail like if there’s any sight of yellow anywhere on the toilet, I’m scrubbing until white or scrubbing the stove until little to no rust appears, etc. With this in mind, I know someone not familiar with the home would need some extended time.

The day of, the housekeeper was to arrive at 9am and was there pretty much on time. Great start! Mike gave her a tour and reminder of what was needed and she began her cleaning journey. All of us were still at home and had somewhat straightened up as much as possible before she came so that she had clear floor access and not much to put away to focus on deep cleaning. She started with cleaning the kitchen and stayed there for a nice amt of time and living room. She was very nice and even shared a personal story with me during a brief 5-minute talk as I grabbed some milk for Miles. I offered her some water in case she didn’t have any as she appeared to be exhausted at times when huffing or groaning during cleaning. No judgment here. Whatever gets you through that helps. Everybody shifted to rooms upstairs for virtual school and work to allow for the housekeeper to not be disturbed as she finished the other rooms downstairs and the floors. Soon it was lunchtime and a gentleman rang the doorbell to inform he had a meal for her. She asked if it was ok for her to eat her lunch and we encouraged her as I was wondering at what time she would. At this time, it was about noon. After lunch, she cleared some of the kids toys away and worked on the boys’ bedroom. I had straightened and organized their room a few days prior so it only needed a few toys put away and the floor cleaned. Then, the time was about 4pm. Mike and I look at each other and huddled in the closet like “how long will she be working today?” I asked him if her typical shift was until 5 or until the job was done but he wasn’t for certain. I saw she was taking a deep breath and drinking water as she cleaned the kids’ bathroom, wiping the sweat from her forehead. I asked “are you ok?” and told her to let me know if she needed more water. I inquired as to if there was a time she had to head home or end her shift. She looked around the bathroom and said “yeah I have this room and the other bedroom to do”. In my head I’m like “uhh you have a few more rooms than that” but I said to her “would you like to come back early tomorrow morning and finish? I know you probably have to get home soon” taking into consideration that someone dropped her off. She said “yeah. Would that work?” I responded “oh yeah, we’ll be here until about noon so if you came early in the morning like 8 or 9, that would prob be enough time to finish up”. She agreed and stated “ok. I’ll finish up here in the bathroom and be back at 9 in the morning”. I was hoping she would say more like 8 but no problem.

After she left, we noticed a few things that weren’t quite up to par. Let me preface by saying that I greatly appreciated this woman for helping to de-stress my life in cleaning my home. It helped in more ways than one. Now, the main thing that caught my eye was the floor. The hardwood floors looked like someone had mopped over sweeping. So the floor was shiny but with crumbs and pieces of paper and such left on top of it. The carpeted steps I thought were vacuumed but looked as if someone swept up the dirt and trash and just left it on the steps. My biggest complaint came from the boys as Marshall stated “do I get credit for helping the housekeeper?” I replied, “helping?” He stated “yes I helped her put the toys away”. Then he pulled me into his room and said “mommy, come look at our room. The lady put stuff in our Monday thru Friday drawers that don’t belong!” I laughed but he was right. So the boys have these colorful hanging drawers in their closet with each drawer slot with the day of the week. They typically have their outfits in each slot for school. The housekeeper must not have paid it any mind and put toys, books, and anything extra she found on their floor and stuffed it in these slots lol. That part didn’t upset me at all as she’s new to our home and didn’t know. To me, she was just trying to help.

Now this next part was a little upsetting. It’s Saturday and we knew that the housekeeper was coming at 9 so everyone woke up by 8am and got dressed as we awaited her arrival. 9am came and went. Hey it’s Saturday in California, maybe she’s caught in traffic. 10am came and went. It’s now 11am and we know for sure she wouldn’t have time to clean anything before we would have to leave. Mike calls the owner and the owner attempts to call and text the housekeeper. The owner was quite upset as she didn’t receive a response from the lady either. At this point, on one hand I’m like “this is a sign that I have to go back to cleaning my own house” and on the other hand I’m hoping that this lady is ok. Did our house scare her away? Should I try for another housekeeper? What would you do?

Love,

Yo! Mama




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