I’ve just finished helping out at a country house with massive grounds – big enough for a country fair to take place and not affect the ususal running of the house business. There were gun dog displays and clay pigeon shooting try out events for the townie who is secretly a budding countryfiler. Haing had conections with this property for several weeks, it never fails to impress me when the young staff scurry about taking crockery, coffee making gear and other catering boxes across from the house to the Orangery or other function rooms. They dart about, keeping carefully to the paths and in the house they never step off their well practiced routes. The carpets in the house are historic and are professionally cared for. The artefactsi in each room are lovingly cared for by the staff and professionals are involved when wedding bookings get a little merrier than planned! Professional care always needed for these carpets.
Oh my goodness did I need to get hold of some cleaners the other day. I was visiting a very ancient relative in her room at a very high end care home. The domestic staff are very helpful and chatty when they wheel their carts and give each room a twirl – more like a lick and a promise. Some of the residents still feel very uncomfortable at seeing someone else, often same age, doing ‘their cleaning’ and try to do it themselves beforehand. This is hilarious because the dusters and spray polish are hidden away for this very reason. the residents think they can do a better job, but as we know, the combination of frail wobbly old age pensioner is not steady enough on the pins to do more than cling on to the furniture on their way round to their stash of dusters . . . they leave more mess than they clean up!
I was visiting a very ancient relative in her care home the other day. Monday had seemed a good choice, I had no other bookings and the only other regular visit wasn’t due until Thursday. So off I toddled. Big mistake. Once I’d actually got parked and through the reception area, I found said relative in a real state of anxiety – there had been a major problem with the extractor fans in the kitchen, so the catering team had been moved to the old kitchen just a few doors from my relative. We had heavy duty cleaning machinery trying to break up the problem in the out pipes from the sinks and the extractor fans needed servicing to comply with the current standards book. It was fascinating watching these activities being done as quickly and carefully as possible So as to not disturb or alarm the residents. A thankless task!
Oh how much simpler it is to clean up these days – I remember when I was small, we used to visit my grand parents and they were very much oof the old fashioned “money can’t be wasted on cleaning materials” brigade. They didn’t use washing up liquid, we had to use a tiny spoonful of washing powder, and very tough stuff that was too. the actual washing was done with a bar of soak on the collars and grubby bits and then the garments either left to soak in suds, or was boiled to within an inch of its life in the copper boiler. It was such hard work for the housewife – no wonder not as many of them went out to full time work! It never ceases to amaze me how the families used to manage, grubby houses, no vacuum cleaners or washing machines. Gosh it all sounds like a nasty nightmare!
I have the most lusciously soft and comfortable honey coloured carpet throughout most of my house, it goes from one main sitting room, up the stairs and throughout the upper floor. My partner was a very keen car fanatic and this involved a great amount of mucky stuff coming into the house from the integral garage. Well, this caused rather a problem with the carpet – I used to try and clean it myself manually at home. After ashort while I realised that a professional was going to be needed. Well, what a fantastic difference – gone was the stubborn shadow of an oil stain and the honey shade came up quite a bit sharper again. I now have a professional clean every year and this is maintained by my own efforts. The cost is well worth it and I’m very proud when folk express amazement at the superb condition of the carpet bearing in mind its age!
When I was growing up, I was always in a pickle when it came to the tidiness of my part of a shared bedroom. I have two sisters and both are completely the polar opposite of me. One has definite tendencies towards OCD, especially in the kitchen and bathroom. That’s a trait I don’t entirely dislike, her rooms have always been cleaner and more welcoming than mine! The other is not quite so fussy and particular about the cleaning or swabbing down, but she does like to stick to her cleaning rota and and nothing is allowed to get in the way of that, except births and deaths – neither of which we can control the timing of. As I am not a slave to the clock, I happily engage the services of a professional cleaning company fairly regularly to tackle the carpets and other deep cleaning jobs. Fantastic value for money and worth every single penny!
Christmas approaches – well it doesn’t seem like five minutes since I was happily babbling about the one from 2016! I do not host christmas anymore – that is down to other members of the extended family. Where I go is usually calm, orderly and extremely clean. In fact the hostess has a thing about constantly wiping down surfaces and popping the cleaning sponge in her microwave oven for a quick 2 minute sterilising burst.
I have never thought about doing that – knowing my luck the spong would self combust. However, they like to have everything really clean for themselves, but even moreso when entertaining. This last year I put them in touch with a really good professional cleaning agency – they see to all rooms, even do the oven as an extra. Their expertise is second to none and everywhere smelt and felt like new. A Christmas Fairy treat for sure.
One of the things about looking after someone else’s pet is the sudden influx of mess that you don’t really expect. I have never had to think too much abut removal of muddy paw prints over a honey cream carpet or over the pale cream three piece suite. I do put massive great towels down near the back door where the hounds come bounding in. Good job I am absolutely hopeless at getting rid of old stuff that no longer seems to have a purpose or need for a space in my house . . . . old bath and swimming towels are exactly what’s needed when babysitting two energetic pups when they’ve made the most of the exploring time in my garden!
The next thing I learnt – very quickly, was that getting the carpet really clean again is to hire the services of a professional carpet cleaner – nothing beats their expertise. The finish is luxuriously soft. Just like new!
Wooh how the time flies – it seems only yesterday I was happily babbling on about a lovely holiday I had spent with my best chum from work, but how we had needed to call in a professional cleaning company when massive clouds of chaff from the harvest had caused havoc with our skin and clothes. She just couldn’t get her cotttage bright, clean and sparkling enough. We needed what she referred to a “a right bottoming out job”. She has lived out there for 24 years after taking redundancy from the company we both enjoyed working for. Her husband also managed to get redundancy at the same time, which in their case was not a double blow, but in fact a really double wind fall! They had already bought the cottage and were doing it up as they could each summer holidays. The start of harvest each year signals time to book the annual autumn clean up.
The Easter holidays in our house used to be manic – one of my sisters has her birthday in mid April and that’s when I recall most Easters fall. OK, many of course do land at the end of March, but on the whole, it’s Easter bunnies and April showers that come together for me. We used to have parties and as I recall, masses of easter eggs each. They were always wrapped in lovely shiny tin foil, in garish colours. There being several of us in the family, there were an awful lot of choccy eggs about. Always had to be kept on show in the sitting room. None of this sneaking them off upstairs to our special space. Trouble with all this easter fun was the mess that ended up on the floor! Chocolate trodden into a carpet of any colour is not a good look. Very special cleaning was employed – all of us with dust pan and brush followed by the 1001 treatment!