Saturday, July 17, 2010

Saturday Morning Chores

Mother Hanging Laundry Outdoors During Washday

In my childhood home, we had a cleaning routine each Saturday morning. We would wake up to find a list on the kitchen table. Mother would be out on an errand so we used the list as our guide.

The first thing I did was dust our piano. It was in the large living room. There was an antique mirror on the wall right above that piano. I would clean the mirror, dust the piano and polish the stool. Right beside the piano was a beautiful china cabinet with the most lovely dishes on display. We never used them. They were part of our family heritage. I cleaned the glass windows on the doors, while dreaming about having a home of my own someday. I was in my own little world while I cleaned on those quiet mornings.

Next, I had to sweep down the stairs. We had an enclosed side porch, which faced the ocean. We lived on the harbor side of Boston, in a lovely small town - called Hingham. From the second floor of our house, as I worked on the porch, I could see ships going by. I loved to look at the ocean and enjoyed the sense of peace it gave me. I used to clean that porch for fun. We had all these lovely cabinets at the end of the room, near the stairs. This house was the same house my Mother grew up in. It had been a small summer cottage, but Grandpa had added on and made it larger. You could see all the touches and creations he added. I am sure the cabinets were built by him and they were darling. I used to clear the built-up clutter and tidy that area. Then I would sweep down the wooden stairs, all the way down to the first floor.

My next job was the bathroom. I had to scrub the entire tub. It never took long. It was good exercise. Dad had remodeled it at one point so we had sliding glass doors on the tub. I loved to clean that glass! It was a pretty bathroom.

Later, Mother would come home from her errand and start cleaning. She did laundry, cleaned the kitchen, vacuumed and made things look neat. It was nice for us all to work on our own tasks, in our own way.

Nothing in our home was elegant. It was a charming summer cottage that had been built up over time by Grandpa. It was a large house with 3 bedrooms upstairs, two porches, a large kitchen and living room and one bathroom. On the first floor, we had another bedroom, the utility room, a bathroom and a cozy apartment with it's own entry. We used the apartment like it was another bedroom. It was my brother's room for years, when he was a teenager. Then my sister took over. I was offered that room, but didn't want to be so far away from the rest of the family.

We had an acre of land, a garden and a large garage where Dad often worked. It was a wonderful home and I enjoyed daydreaming, while I cleaned on those Saturday mornings.

Mrs. White

More about my childhood home, and my Grandparents, in my Italian Heritage.

I remember my Nana in Alabama.

Inspiration from The 1940's House.

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Joyce Ackley said...

The Hingham Mass. cottage sounds lovely. To be able to watch the ships on the ocean - wonderful. I live in Florida, but I'm not near the ocean.

I'd been putting off my chores, but after reading your post, I think I'll tackle my little "pied a terre." It is my primary residence, not a second home, but I like to give it a title! Sometimes I call it my "casita," depending on my mood!

Enjoy your Saturday.