In her week here, she:
- Painted our family room and kitchen (with Eric's help). This included all our trim work and the 3 doors we had installed when our kitchen was renovated 2 years ago. For 2 years I had unpainted trim and doors and I just stopped noticing it.
- Painted a wall of our living room.
- Rearranged our living room and dining room furniture to be functional and more attractive.
- Selected places to hang our art, and then hung some of it.
- Went with me to Homegoods and made me choose a duvet cover and pillow to decorate my room. I haven't purchased or received a new duvet cover since Eric and I married almost 10 years ago. I also bought a picture to hang in Charlotte's room, which hasn't had a single thing hung in there for the entirety of her life. Then she hung the picture while I went to work.
- Decorated the boys' room, including buying comforter and sheet sets. In the 3 years we have lived here, I have hung nothing on their walls. In the 18 months since they have been sleeping in their bunk bed, I never bought them a comforter. Now they have a decorated room that looks and feels much more like home.
- Organized Charlotte's and the boys' drawers; pulled the baby items I had been hiding in the back of the boys' closet out and made me deal with them.
- Pulled all the random toiletries I had been piling in my bathroom out and made me sort them, then put the ones I kept back in the bathroom in an organized way.
- Re-organized my pantry.
- Moved our appliances in the kitchen so our counters look clearer and we have more usable counter space.
- Hung blinds and valances.
- Decluttered all our surfaces.
- Did at least 7 loads of laundry.
- Swept and vacuumed. Eric joked that our cleaning lady will have nothing to do when she comes on Tuesday!
- Made lasagna while I worked all day.
- Babysat the kids while Eric and I went out to dinner with friends.
I am willing to bet that she did more than that and that I'm leaving some things out, but I think that list gives a good idea of how helpful she was. The week flew by (at least it did for me, she may have been counting the minutes to getting home and getting some rest) and we were all sad to see her go today.
There were tears when we dropped her at the airport, and tonight when I tucked Asher into bed he said, "Mommy, I want something." I said, "what do you want?" and he said, "I want Memere back." The kids loved having all the time with and attention from Memere, and it made a difference to have another adult in the house.
Now that Memere is retired, I have many ideas as to how she can spend her time. I told her she has to come back again so we can have a trip just to play, with days in the city and seeing a show, a trip out to Lancaster, and leisure time. I also suggested that they join us for the weekend when we go to DC to celebrate the boys' birthday. It did make me wish that Eric's parents lived closer to us so that the kids could spend more time with them- it is hard when we are far away and it takes so long to get from one place to another.
I got the best Christmas gift ever, and I am enjoying my clean, grown-up looking house. It is finally beginning to feel like a home, and not just a place where we are stashing our belongings. We still have a few more things to do, but when the sun is shining again, I will take some pictures of her hard work and post them.