"Suddenly I was caught in an attack of cleanup rage"

24 Feb 2021Updated: 4 hours ago | 52 people are reading

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COLUMN - After more than six weeks of lockdown, where Franke (42) and hubby hustle working from home, teaching and entertaining children Puk (8) and Olle (5) while it is holiday time, there is even time left to house upside down.

My house is spic and span. To pass through a ring. Spotless. Light. Airy. A cloud. A sigh. Empty. That's right. The first weeks of the lockdown were buffeting for me, just like for you. Fear of the corona spirit, working from home, teaching Puk (8) and Olle (5) in between that working from home, all day long on each other's lips: I thought it was just a hassle.

"Mommy what is 6x7?" , "Beep-beep don't forget your zoom meeting", "Mommy I can't find my shoes", "Dingdong, your groceries madam", "Honey, when can I use the computer?" for this week "," Ding-dong, will Puk still play outside? "... That not many parents have gone crazy lately, I think it's pretty.

House full of animals

That first restless period I was therefore asleep in bed at 20.00. That went on for weeks. Weeks in which we kept all the balls in the air and slowly got used to the new pace. And our house secretly silted up. That silting started with the crafts of Olle, who according to his kindergarten schedule had to tinker every day with the theme 'Animals'.

Before I knew it, the living room was full of stuffed animals that had been dragged from the attic, an elephant made of paper mache, various lego animals, a complete zoo made of a cardboard box filled with clay animals and branches. Plus six bears in the windowsill, because we could not skip the bear scavenger hunt.

Neighbors came by during all that homework and homework. A striking amount. Whether we were still interested in a hooverboard. And we could still do something with 2153 colored rubber bands. Children's clothes! Bags full. Pinballs size 31. Comic books and old magazines. Grandpa and grandma also came by - at an appropriate distance. With garden furniture that needed a coat of paint and jars of homemade jam. Always useful in uncertain hoarding times.

Our house filled up in a short time. With stuff from people who did have time to indulge in an enthusiastic spring cleaning. And since there was meters of traffic jam at the environmental street, every day, it was of course also useful to make us happy with it. Win win! But as sweet as it might be, my house now felt like a landfill.

At work

Somewhere on an early Saturday morning, I was completely fed up with the clay animals, homemade peep-boxes and bags full of buttons-that-must-be-once-made- just come. Now that the children no longer had to go to the sports clubs, I put myself to work thoroughly. From top to bottom, from left to right. Room after room, with an occasional crying child in my wake: "No, mama, not those stones, they are my lie-li-hings."

But I was inexorable. Garbage bag after garbage bag I threw out, full of Pikachu cards stuck together, crushed felt-tip pens and gnawed comic books. With each bag, the army became in my head, my blood pressure dropped, and more color came on my cheeks.

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A post shared by Franke van Hoeven (@frankevanhoeven) on Apr 29, 2020 at 1:33 am PDT

When the garbage bags had been drained, I brushed the hair out of my face and sighed. I picked up the bucket and started to soak. Soaking, soaking, soaking. The whole house, the windows inside and outside, the kitchen cabinets. I dabbed the doors of the nursery, removed the spider loafs in the attic, polished the baseboards until they shone. Then there was no rest. Inspired by the candy store of the TV show Lego Masters, our new addiction, I decided to tip the Lego drawer in the nursery. I raced to the Blokker for boxes, and hours later all the Lego, sorted by color, was neatly in shiny new boxes.

A bit bare, but

The result is impressive. The house is empty. Very empty. Marie Kondo would get a heartbeat from it. Everything gone, wonderfully white, quiet and spacious. A bit bald, actually, now that I took a closer look. Unpleasant maybe even. Hmm ... Now what?

When would those huge lines at the Ikea get a bit less?