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Thursday, March 3, 2016

House Work

          Yesterday I got up and out the door instantly to where my husband said the dogs were very upset with me leaving, they ran around hoping to find me outside but I had to get Pooh bear my neighbor's dog to the groomers....Bernice isn't my neighbor anymore but I am able to drive her around like getting her dog to the vet or groomers, which is a twice a year thing that I do. Bernice bought me a coffee afterwords as we sat in the coffee shop of our usual grocery store....we talked up a storm being happy morning people over our relaxing place before we went out into the store, it was a busy morning that when we got back to her home with out her dog, I decided to deep clean and move all her living room furniture out and vacuum. I gave the whole room my full attention, then did all the laundry while washing out her refrigerator. I changed light bulbs and took out lots of extra trash. By the time 1pm came about we went to the garden center for her soil and seeds then picked up her dog from the groomers. I was getting so much energy from the sugary cherry pie she baked while I was dusting the book shelves. These are the things I love doing, organizing, chatting and cleaning. I love getting all the trash cans empty, vacuuming up the corners of the walls and in between cushions on the couch. I love having all the doors and windows wide open for fresh air! Sometimes the cleaning project is heavy duty with lots of scrubbing that will make my arms sore, sometimes it's the easy sorting through junk mail that makes me proud to recycle and move on!

Bernice is 50 years older then me exactly, so her energy level isn't at the same place as mine. I give her fun things to do while sitting down as I vacuum. We talk about anything and everything, sometimes she will read to me while I dust or share a great joke, like this one;

Father and Son were sitting down to eat dinner when the son asked his father "Dad, can we eat bugs?" The father replied annoyed "We don't talk about such things at the dinner table." later on the father asked his son "Why did you ask about eating bugs Son?"  the boy honestly explained "Oh never mind, it was in your soup bowl but it's gone now."

Bernice and I laughed together as we usually do when she reads these kind of jokes to me while I clean.....I am grateful to be able to have a friend like her in my life! I sit back with a cup of tea at her nicely clean freshly open home. She has many great stories even some I have heard over and over again and I still love them like the first time I had heard them! 
Last week while I was cleaning for another friend, she asked me "Do you really like cleaning???" and I had to stop my house work for a moment with a big smile saying "Of Course I do!, baby sitting, house-siting, pet care and cleaning are my most favorite jobs, she asked kindly yet a bit confused "WHY?" I laughed out loud as I explained to her "Because growing up in a household of chaos I could only control my environment by cleaning, I didn't get yelled at by my father if I was always busy cleaning and I learned I could really relax in a clean nice open home where everyone seemed to be happier for it too, so I developed a real delight in house work and now I am even more proud of my ability to do it good! Because if I think about it I will never be able to control this world but I can always control how nice and clean my own home, I stand back in awe of how dirty it was when I started only be like new now!" she giggled at me and I assured her I didn't have any judgement towards her not ever, I simply loved cleaning!

     If I have a wide open day like yesterday then I usually decide on a big cleaning organizing project at Bernice's house, last fall I cleaned up her patio in corners she said have never been touch for over a decade. This winter before Christmas I deep cleaned her bathroom which was a very big job since she had cosmetics from the 1950's that had crystallized. 
        I usually pick a room that feels to crowded after awhile and let her know that if she sits in the kitchen then I will bring her papers to sort through into her keep and toss piles, this event alone can wear her out so I am careful to not make her feel so overwhelmed. There is still quite a few more days of deep cleaning ahead this spring as long as she is living in a safe part of the home I make sure every week that she isn't going to trip on something and that she isn't going to poison herself with old foods.  
       This is important to understand that as we get older and age we don't see as clearly nor do we smell as good as we once had....having younger people help us is so important! The joy in our friendship has grown over these last 5 years! I was impressed the very first time I saw Bernice's house next to my soon-to-be home, our new landlord Courtney explained to me "She's an elderly lady who has lived here forever and loves to garden if you can't tell." I delighted in every square inch of her home next door to my possible backyard, I was in such AWE and in such HOPE to have a neighbor like Bernice!

Now I can look back with a heart bursting full of LOVE and JOY for all of our thousands of conversations, our many hot afternoons drinking icy lemon aid on her patio admiring her old grand cherry tree!  This is a friendship I cherish completely, it's a great moment in time for me when I make Bernice laugh with my goofiness and my short stories! I love doing fun projects at her place, kissing her puppy dog and taking out her trash! We can sit and talk for hours or I will just swing by to say a quick HI....yet cleaning once a week makes me always happy to see her place be made cozy and clean once again!   

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