My State of the Home Post

When people hear about A Slob Comes Clean for the first time, they seem to have one of two assumptions:

Assumption #1: My home is always a disaster and obviously, I’m proud of that since I have a blog about it.


Assumption #2: My house is perfectly clean all the time because I am fully changed from my slobbish ways.  Y’know, since I have a blog about it.

I’d say I’m somewhere in between.  My personality and Slob Brain mean that keeping my home under control will always be a struggle for me, but the blog has helped me stay focused on decluttering and figuring out ways to manage my home that work for me.

When I speak to groups, I say this:

“Before the blog, I could have a party.  I just needed two weeks notice.  The first week was spent decluttering (which really meant shoving everything into the master bedroom and locking the door), and the second week was spent cleaning.

Now, I can have a party with one day’s notice.  This is partly because my house is in much better shape, and partly because I’ve changed my view of my home and of hospitality.”

But just to clarify what it’s really like, I’m sharing some photos.

Today, I cleaned house.  After the loosi-goosiness of Christmas break and the insanity of being over-committed-to-everything in the month before that, I had to spend some focused time on it.   Our church’s home group that meets here resumes this coming Sunday evening.

Things you should know:

I don’t consider this party ready.  I consider it home group ready.  A real party would mean I would re-evaluate my decor and clear out every last cluttered space that anyone might see.  These are friends who come over weekly.  Besides, I’m pretty sure most of them know by now that I’m Nony the Slob. 

I didn’t move quickly today.  I’m more-than-a-little sore from working out three times this week, and even though the trainer on the Kinect felt the need to tell me when I did “terrible” . . . I am sore.

Really sore. 

So every piece of paper picked up off of the floor required a huff and a puff and an audible groan.  If I had the motivation of a “real” party (or just plenty of energy) the times would likely have been shorter.

First, I cleaned the kitchen:

We’ve been doing Family Kitchen Cleaning Time each night this week, so it could have been worse . . .

But until I focused on it, the clean big stuff that had been “drying” behind the sink for three weeks and the odds and ends from Christmas baking and such had been invisible to me.

Second, I focused on the breakfast area:

I did switch back the dining room chair that was in there for some reason, but didn’t bother clearing the cabinet in the back.

And all the partially full water bottles by the plant?  Hubby is in charge of keeping plants alive and he collects partially empty/full water bottles for that.  Pretty sure the abundance has something to do with having cleaned out the Suburban over the break.

Next, I mopped: 

It had been a while . . .

That time included putting the chairs up on the table (with much groaning), getting out and putting attachments on the steam mop, etc.

Next, I went to the Dining Room (where I’d obviously been breaking my NOT ONE THING rule):

I wanted to ignore the entryway, but didn’t:

Then came the living room:

And finally, the gameroom:

Before I put up that picture . . . let me explain.

First of all, I’ll be re-arranging that room soon.  The boys got a Kinect for Christmas, and it requires more room than our old setup had for the sensor to be able to work.  They’ve adjusted by pushing the couch as far back as it will go in the room, which means that it basically blocks the door.  Today, my only goal was to make the room walk-through-able.  That’s it.  No one hangs out in there on Sunday evenings, but the half-bath that guests use is in there.  I’d love to spend all day working in this room, but today was not that day.

That mentality also explains why I’ve conveniently left pictures of any bedrooms out of this post . . .

And finally, I dusted and vacuumed all of these rooms:

So, with right around 2 1/2 hours of work, the house is ready to let people come inside.


Oh, and the link to the Kinect on Amazon?  It’s my affiliate link.



  1. 1

    I love your home…so beautiful! =) This is similar to what I did one day on Facebook (yeah I’m sure all of my FB friends were on pins and needles wondering which room I’d attack next…LOL) I mostly did it to show myself how much I could get done and prove to my husband that parts of this house DO get clean during the day (as most of the places I had clean were of course, dirty again by the time he got home because of five kids and my refusal to follow them around all day cleaning up after them…once I clean something I’m done…won’t reclean two and three times in a day…;)

  2. 2

    Your “before” pictures look a lot like my house pretty much everyday! I am working on my cleaning skills this year since it drives my husband nuts and I would like to have people over without several days notice. :P. Some of my rooms look better and some look worse. I have 3 small children so it is an uphill battle. (ages 6 weeks-6 years)

  3. 3

    Haha i would love for my house to look like the BEFORE pics. I just use the excuse that we had to move from a 4 bedroom house to a 2 bedroom apt and 10×10 storage to just a 2 bedroom apt for 2 adults and 3 kids under 6. Do you think a year and a half later is pushing that excuse? Lol oh well. I do feel motivated after reading your blog though!

    • 4

      Those are some legit excuses, Ruth! And these before pics are a ba-jillion times better than they were before I started this blog three years ago!

  4. 5
    Christina M says:

    I was really really REALLY hoping to see a Christmas tree still up….mostly so I could think, “Yay! I’m not the only one!”.

    Bummer. 😀

  5. 8

    Maybe you’ve answered this in an earlier post, but I don’t know how to look for it. Do you have tile floors in your kitchen and dining room and what brand is your steamer and would you recommend it? Love the idea of timing yourself!

  6. 10

    Now, if I only could guarantee 2.5 uninterrupted hours, I could be motivated to join you! 🙂 I have 7 kids including a whiny 3yo and a 9mo with mommy-abandonment issues. The first 5 would be happy to let me clean. What I need to work on is training THEM better!

  7. 11

    Your dirty house looks like my dirty house! I feel so much better knowing I’m not the only one. Now…did you hide all the clutter in the bedrooms? 😉

  8. 12

    I think this is the first time I’ve ever seen your home. It’s lovely! Our living room is quite small. Our kinect sensor was about shoulder height–weonly neededto be about 5 feet away?

    What about putting the TV over on the wall where the blue thing is…and your couch over by where the desk used to be? I’m not sure that will work (what to do with the desk?) and it may look weird, but I thought I’d suggest it. (Though you’ve probably already thought of it.)

    Good luck!

  9. 13

    You’re my hero! I can’t believe it NEVER crossed my mind to put my chairs up on the table to make it easier to clean the floor. For heaven’s sake, how can I have been such an idiot for so long?! (It would require clearing my table first…, but still, brilliant!) I love your posts. Keep ’em coming!

  10. 14
    Katie Mae says:

    Wow, those after pictures look great! I would consider that party-ready. 🙂 This post was well timed. My dishes, paperwork, laundry, etc. have been piling up all week and it’s time for a marathon tomorrow. Maybe I’ll take before/after shots for myself. Thank you for the inspiration!

  11. 15

    I love your before and after pics with the timer. I always think something will take forever and then put off doing it. I think that this would motivate me and keep me on task. Love it!

  12. 16
    Amy the Other Slob says:

    I OWEEZ end up with invisible dry dishes by my sink!!!! Why can I only see them when I know company’s coming? Can it be possible that I am suddenly wearing Special Company Glasses? Drives me crazy when everything out of place alla sudden gets that shimmery glow. Why not deal with it sooner? I’m working on that.

    Thanks for another frank informative funny post!

  13. 17

    Thank you for your website. It makes me feel human! I work full-time and despite the fact that I live in a spotless/tidy/uncluttered house in my head, the reality is far from that. I love the timer idea. In fact, I should really be taking down Christmas decor (don’t judge) and cleaning and doing laundry, I’m sitting her reading your blog. lol Like I said, I live in a perfect house – in my head! As for putting the chairs on the table to mop – what the heck! Why have I never thought of that? Thank you for your pictures they help just as much as your writing. Off I go to do what I should be doing, and use a timer and put my chairs on the table to mop! THANK YOU!

  14. 18

    Your posts are so motivating and inspiring!. I really appreciate all the time you put into this to encourage your readers and bring us along on the journey with you to motivate and teach us tips. My family (Husband, myself, 3 kids 2 dogs) is planning on moving soon. Any advice or tips on how to have a fresh start in a new house?? Also on the Kinect note you might want to try a Kinect zoom it makes adjusts the sensor for a smaller room so you do not need as much space. We have one and it works fantastic.

  15. 19

    I just found your blog…love it! I discovered FlyLady years back and while it has great tips there was something missing, and I *REALLY* like what you are doing. My house is pretty bad right now and I need some motivation.

  16. 20

    Nony, I think that is TOTALLY party-ready. In fact, I’m tempted to pack my cooler and show up on your doorstep. (What? Stalker? Nuh-uh, not until you’ve got a restraining order saying so.)

    I have a rule about cleaning for parties: I only do a once-over, dust the flat surfaces, make the glass ones sparkle, then turn the lights down. Heck, I’m going to have to clean AFTER the party, so why knock myself out before it? (Besides, with my friends there’s usually quite a bit of nasty clean-up to do after they’ve gone.)

  17. 21

    Since we mostly see chaotic pictures of piles it was lovely to actually see your house. It’s gorgeous!! And so much nicer than I thought it would be to be honest. Sorry about the assumptions. 🙂 Greetings from Sweden btw, and thanks for your blogging!!

  18. 23

    Your home looks so nice, neat, and tidy. Great job! Mostly wanted to compliment you on the game room. I remember when it was a “no name” space and causing you stress. Now it looks great and I am sure you and the family are really enjoying that game room.

  19. 24
    Tasmanian says:

    I love that timer. You probably work faster, more deliberately, and feel like you have played a game when you finish.
    We bought a HUGE wall length cupboard last week and I often thought of your games cupboard photo before and after from months ago as I chose which items go in which shelf. And my hubby mismeasured for the first time ever and we ended up with a spare unit of cupboard which fits PERFECTLY next to the dining table as a kids craft table. Everything is sorted but now I want to declutter everywhere else.
    Big dishes always end up “draining” for a week here too.

  20. 25
    Tasmanian says:

    P.S. My children have long loved the before-and-after photos of their toy area etc when I ask them to pack up. We also have a pack-up song on CD 🙂

  21. 26

    I love that your husband is using partially full water bottles for plants! That sounds like something I would do that MY husband would laugh at. 🙂

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