H is quite a tidy person. I am not. I've never been tidy, much to the despair of everyone who tried to bring me up. My form of tidying is to do a complete blitz so everything looks perfect, then gradually let it slide for a while, say, six months or so. I'm happy to have piles of books lying around the place - who knows when I might want to read them? I'm ok with piles of papers, it means I know where to find what I'm looking for. Being untidy does not mean I can't find stuff. Except maybe earrings. My passport is always in my handbag, given the travel I usually do, so that's easy. The kitchen is always clean, I don't like washing-up sitting in the sink.I also do plenty of laundry. But papers, books, magazines, clothes that don't need washing, cosmetics, jewelry, are slung around the house in what seems to be a fairly random manner.
H likes things to be tidy. Funnily enough, he leaves some of his stuff lying around, but he can't see it. So, for example, his clothes are always in the laundry basket or put away - he doesn't leave piles lying around. He generates much less paperwork and smaller bookpiles than I, but both are in their official places in his office and by his bed, respectively. On the other hand, his golf clubs, skis, walking equipment, and rucksack quite happily sit out for months before he notices. Behind our sofa is the disassembled pile of poles that was a mobile clothes rack in his old house. It's been there four years. He says he can't get rid of it as it belongs to a friend. But he asked the friend last year if he wanted it back, and has heard nothing. Which I think means it's time to get rid of it. But he can't quite do it. But he can nag me to take spare computer cables back to work, throw away old books etc. I am a packrat, he wants the house more minimalist. It's give and take.
A fit of tidying has come upon me, however, and today I have cleaned out the cupboard in our living room where H has been throwing any of my stuff he didn't want to deal with for the last 4 years. I've been putting in there the presents I buy for unspecified children so that I'm never caught short when there's a birthday that H has forgotten (he has 3 godsons and no idea when any of them were born, not to mention his 2 nephews). It was quite a treasure trove. I found a lot of beautiful editions of childrens books, which I've now just decided to keep for Pob. Plus a couple of pairs of pink tights that must have been meant for one of my goddaughters, but which would never fit now. Plus a pair of dinosaur pyjamas that might fit in a couple of years. They've all gone up to the room which will be hers. I also discovered the spare orders of service from our wedding and some photographs I ordered for various family members but didn't distribute. There are spare light fittings that came from my old house but don't fit here, and a box full of stickers that I collected when I was about, say, 13? Yes, I already said I was a packrat. And I'm not ashamed.
Having generated one bag full of rubbish from that exercise, I then turned to our bedroom. I've been gathering stuff I couldn't find a home for on top of my chest of drawers for a couple of years now. A bunch of travel equipement - bose headphones, spare travel plugs, selection of teabags. A few piles of books, although these were totally overshadowed by the massive piles under and around my side of the bed. Did I mention we are chronically short of bookshelves?
Anyway, there's nothing terribly interesting about what I found. Some has gone to the charity shop, some for trash and some has been tidied away. The room looks much more habitable, and I feel happier about having people in and out. Now I just need to tidy our kitchen/living room area a bit further, and we'll be ready for visitors.
I've been preparing for visitors by baking, too. I've baked 48 muffins in the last 2 days - some blueberry, some banana/pecan and some date/orange/bran. That's filled the freezer with stuff we can easily eat for breakfast without much effort. Plus I made a couple of New Year honeycakes which means we can offer people something with their cups of tea. Although I made the mistake of making the cakes with chestnut honey, and I'm not convinced that the bitterness of that honey works with the way the cake is supposed to taste. I bet no one will say so, though. I am intending to make some of Nigella's oatmeal chocolate chip cookies tomorrow, as they freeze well and will give us something else to feed pepole with.Then I hope I'm done. H has already made quantities of Ragu, roasted tomato sauce for pasta, a couple of lasagnas and some chicken soup for the freezer, so we definitely won't starve!
Anyone think we're nesting?