How to clean your house… a lesson in priorities.

Morecaster. Middle of January. Miserable winter weather. I, Jenny Brown, am at home on a Wednesday evening, slumped on a cream, sagging sofa with felt tip marks scribbled on the arm rest and what I hope is chocolate smeared into the upholstery. I stare past my ghastly neon pink ‘Best Mum in the World’ slippers towards the end of the room, towards a full on view of the small oak sideboard covered in inch think dust, imprinted with tiny handprints, and placed on it, a large flat screen television, smeared in goodness knows what. To one side, under the huge bay window, an oak coffee table, hidden under a mound of Play Mobil characters, CBeebies magazines, several half finished sippy cups of milk steadily turning into cottage cheese and a styling head doll covered in slimy play make up. Below it, the floor. Now, where is it? I haven’t seen it for weeks. It is littered with tiny sequined shoes, a pink leotard, purple fairy wings, sweaty running socks, huge size 12 filthy sneakers, several ties and piles and piles and piles of unopened mail, magazines, notebooks and to do lists. Yes, many to do lists. The fireplace, once a source of immense pride and beauty with its dazzling marble hearth, and polished oak surround, now yet another dust collector. The hearth, no longer gleaming but dirtied by heavy rain and hailstones tumbling through the filthy chimney like tiny pebbles dancing through a rain stick. And me, hand deep down in the recesses of the sofa. The remote control, buried amongst crumbs, loose change, glittery hair clips, a baby’s teether and… something else… maybe a banana skin? I’m not sure. With a huge sigh, I pull the remote control out of it’s burial ground point it in the optimum direction and switch the television on.

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