We’ve all had the phone call.
The phone rings and you pick it up and it’s your brother’s girlfriend’s cousin’s best friend’s mother who is having a jewelry party and she wants to drop off a catalog for the event next week.
Or it’s your mother’s co-worker’s sister’s aunt who needs you to teach the Sunday School lesson and she wants to leave the book at your house.
Or your daughter’s cheerleading coach is dropping her off after practice and wants to talk for just a minute.
Just a minute.
Or your neighbor wants to stop by and discuss the last episode of American Idol over coffee.
And you hang up the phone and look around and realize your house may or may not closely resemble the latest episode of Hoarders.
You totally got this.
All you need are 14 minutes and some of my proven tips to faux clean your house for company.
Step 1: Put on shoes
You are going to need them to sprint.
Kind of like getting ready for a clean-up marathon.
So lace up your sneakers and line up at the start line.
If you are brilliant and are already wearing shoes, congratulate yourself and skip to step 2.
Step 2: Light candles
You want to do this at the beginning, so the wax has time to start smelling.
If you open the door and greet your catalog bringer or your American Idol talker or cheerleading coacher with the gentle aroma of a salty ocean breeze, they get distracted.
It’s a proven fact.
Pomegranate and lemongrass make cobwebs and smelly socks fade away.
Step 3: Fill your sink with soap and water
Turn on the faucet, plug the sink, add dish soap and fill with water.
Then take all the dirty dishes and place them under that beautiful, foamy soapy water.
Next, collect all the cups and plates and other assorted dishes from different rooms of your house and add them to the sink.
The soap looks super cute and it looks like you were about to do dishes and were interrupted by the door bell.
Step 4: Pick one room to stash everything in
You only really need to concentrate on the rooms closest to the doorbell.
Picking those up gives the illusion that everything else in your house looks just as clean as those rooms are.
Choose a room out of sight as your stash room and just toss everything in there.
Then close the door.
Do not. I repeat. Do not open the door or reference that room in any way.
Act like it moved to Tahiti.
Step 5: Wipe down your kitchen counters with something that smells good
Don’t take a lot of time on this step.
Your dishes should be in that soapy water, leaving the counters free.
Spray a cleaner that smells good and wipe down.
This creates the illusion that you just cleaned the entire space.
Step 6: Finish it all off with red lipstick.
You only have one minute left.
Spend it wisely.
Don’t worry about the rest of the make-up. Don’t worry about your yoga pants with paint on them. Don’t worry about the cobwebs or the pumpkins in your hutch in the dining room.
Apply red lipstick and tell yourself how amazing you are.
And that your house is clean.
And that your messy bun is perfect.
You got this.
And when the door bell rings, you and your amazingness….
….can answer it with a smile.
PS I skip step 6 because I’m usually already wearing red lipstick.
So I fluff the pillows instead. 🙂
And now from some more tips and tricks from some of my favorite friends: