Enthralled with the acres of hardwood floors, fireplaces in every room, and gorgeous trim you only find in houses of a certain age (this one dates to 1890), I laughed it off. We had moved from a 900 square foot home that took a team effort of just 20 minutes to get it clean enough for company and I couldn't envision spending any more time than that. We'd just get a Roomba, we figured.
Within weeks I admitted privately she was right.
Within months I fessed up more publicly.
Soon I was the boring person who complains about how much time it takes to clean the house.
We'd lose an entire weekend to mopping, scrubbing and fervent proclamations that this time we'd get clean and organized and stay that way.
We tried various approaches; one room a day, x number of minutes per day, refrigerator lists, apps, paper planners with chore lists. But when there was always more to be done it came to seem pointless to even make an effort. So we'd let it slide. Then something would spur us into action; family coming to visit, hosting friends, wasting half an hour looking for something we'd misplaced, and we'd lose an entire weekend to mopping, scrubbing and fervent proclamations that this time we'd get clean and organized and stay that way. Between those frenzied bouts of cleaning I'd find myself in one of two untenable situations. Working from home I don't get to leave dirty dishes or the mountain of laundry behind each day. So I had to either look at it all day, which left me feeling stressed and overwhelmed, unable to focus — or just deal with it myself, which ate away large chunks of my work day and left me feeling stressed and overwhelmed. You see where this is going.