Regular readers of this blog (and anyone who saw me running around agitatedly clutching a roll of masking tape) will know we recently moved house. For new readers (helloooooo! welcome!) you can read about my fun life in a two bedroom apartment with seven hundred children here, and all about my marvellously relaxing move here.
Our new place is great. We have a walk in wardrobe for me (well, theoretically it’s for me and my husband to share, but I think two small drawers and a shoe stand is perfectly sufficient for his needs). A play area for the kids. A garden. Even a second sink in the kitchen in case we decide to go kosher (or grow hydroponic cabbages, which is equally as likely).
It’s perfect. A little too perfect, if you know what I mean.
You see, the kids and I have never lived in a new house before. And it turns out we’re not very good at it.
I don’t know whether we are genetically clumsy, or if we are subconsciously destroying our new home in an attempt to recall the familiar sensation of the hovel we’ve left behind. But in the space of just a few weeks we have already broken a doorknob, busted a lamp and scratched the living room floor - using ‘we’ in the sense of… well… ‘me’.
As for the kids, well, they have stained a new cushion, nicked a blind, and chipped some paint off the walls. And little Boo has drawn with texta on a chair, spilled orange juice on the carpet, and vomited into a shag pile rug, which pretty much takes out the prize for Most Disgusting Defacing Of Household Furniture EVER.
Still, I feel pretty relaxed about it all. After all, these things are going to happen, and a new house can’t stay pristine forever. Right?
Well, not according to my husband. He is the architect behind our magnificent new creation, and its ongoing occupation (read ‘destruction’) by his family has become a source of deep consternation. Each minor piece of damage we inflict upon the house – not to mention each water-mark on the table, or each footprint on the floor - causes him to gnash his teeth and tear his hair (straight into the bin, he doesn’t want to leave a mess).
My husband, you see, believes our home should be maintained in its original, unspoiled state. He feels that any mess (using ‘mess’ in the sense of object) should be immediately removed from sight and placed neatly in a cupboard. This is fine if it is, say, a jacket, but not so fine when it is a bowl of cereal you haven’t even finished eating. So outraged is he by the very markers of our presence (such as, for example, handprints) that I’m starting to doubt whether he intended this house for human occupation at all. Perhaps we were all just meant to live in the garage, only entering the premises to clean.
The issue has caused some stress and we have attempted to find a solution. I suggested that my husband relax, and enjoy his time in the family home. He suggested we each don plastic gloves, and teach the children to hover a metre above the floor.
Still, this morning, to my great surprise, he left a cup on the sink, instead of placing it straight in the dishwasher.
Woo hoo! I think we’re starting to make progress.