At one time or another we’ve all been there. We’re at home, lounging in our pajamas, watching the latest episode of Scandal, when a friend calls saying they’re in the neighborhood, and asking if they can stop by.
You see the pile of mail sitting on the coffee table. Your daughter’s toys in a pile on the floor. The dirty dishes on the counter. Toothpaste splatters in the bathroom sink. And the mud that your son tracked through the living room last night.
And you say “Sure! Come on over.”
Time to get moving.
How to Fake a Clean House
1) Clean up the bathroom. Wipe down the sink and the toilet, wipe any spots off the mirror and give the toilet bowl a quick scrub. Close the shower curtain. Nobody should look in there anyway.
2) Remove clutter from all flat surfaces – including the floor. It doesn’t matter how clean your house is. If you have clutter laying around your house is going to look messy. Clean off the kitchen table, coffee tables, and counter tops. If you have the time, put it all away. If you don’t, grab a box and throw everything in it. Hide the box and sort through it once your friend leaves.
3) Dust. This is an easy one – grab your duster and spend two minutes dusting your entertainment center and any bookshelves. Don’t go crazy – you don’t want it to look so clean that your friend catches on to the fact that you just cleaned your house in a panic because they were on their way over.
4) Sweep or vacuum. Just sweep the middles, where you’re going to be walking, sitting, or hanging out. Don’t start moving furniture or cleaning the floors in a room your friend has no business being in.
5) Stash your dirty dishes. If your sink is piled high with dirty dishes, either take a minute or two to toss them in the dishwasher or put them in a box and hide them in the oven. (But remember to take them out of the oven before using it!)
Most importantly – Make yourself look presentable. I forget this one a lot. I spend so much time trying to make the house look good that I forget to make myself look good, too. Take five minutes to get dressed, brush your hair and put on some mascara and lip gloss if you’re into that sort of thing. Remember – your friend is coming to see you!
Lastly, take a minute to make a fresh pot of coffee or a pitcher of lemonade. Your guest probably won’t remember the state of your home, but they’ll definitely remember feeling welcome. And always remember “Those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.”