If you were a mom on the internet in the early 00′s, you already know about the Fly Lady. Fly Lady is a fun-loving, high-spirited gal who discovered the secret to making you clean your house. Through working together with imaginary companions, being ruthlessly cheerful, wearing shoes at all times, abbreviating everything (FLY=Finally Love Yourself and CHAOS=Can’t Have Anyone Over Syndrome), you can bless your house by cleaning it and find peace and freedom. Fly Lady told us things like, “You can do anything for 15 minutes!” and “When you’re overwhelmed, shine your sink!” Fly Lady brought us cleaning zones, mini-missions, schedules, lists, products, helpful hints, pep talks, and also a large, enthusiastic community of other house cleaners.
Some of us took to Fly Lady like a drowning rat to a life rope. Others rejected her. We didn’t know why, but we just couldn’t swallow that bright purple pill. There was always a sort of insidious, grim, brainwashing aspect to Fly Lady, and at times it could take on a nightmarish gleam. You’re happy because you say you’re happy. You like to clean the toilet because here you are cleaning it, and don’t you like it? Just look at how it shines! Now, I’m not going to harsh on Fly Lady too much. I’m sure she helped a lot of people, those who really loved her grinding cheer and robotic energy. I have friends who fit themselves securely into those lace-up Keds and joined the enormous house-blessing army. I also have friends who walk around barefoot in their houses and yet appear quite joyful. One of these is my friend whose “sister” is allergic to “potatoes” as I mentioned in my last post. When I asked about her most embarrassing CD, she shared this little gem, in which Fly Lady, in my opinion, goes too far:
This is a CD that was written, recorded and performed by a Fly Lady fan who believed so deeply and powerfully in the program that she decided she had to contribute. From the description on the web site: This music is so beautifully written, performed and arranged that you truly feel the you have been hit upside the head and heart with waves of inspiration and fun. There are fun dance around the house songs, uplifting songs and songs that just make you feel loved and hugged. There are loving songs, silly songs and songs that make your heart swell. Yes, the CD is going to hit you upside the heart, and your heart will swell. You will either end up with a nice clean tub or be dead from cardiac edema. Either way, click here to take a listen to some of these inspirational tracks.
From the song “I’m Flying”:
Well my sink is shining but I’m not whining, I’m flying!
I’m just baby-steppin’ and I’m not obsessin’, I’m flying!
I’ve got my list of things to do
And I’m ready for action in my lace-up shoes
Well I’m no martyr, I’m just working smarter
So that one is pretty curriculum-specific. But here’s one that can be applied to many situations, from when your dining room table is messy to when your whole town is engulfed in flames from the earth’s core:
Today my heart is sinking
And my world is caving in
But there’s light on the horizon
And the darkness will give in to…
One more day of hope
One more day of faith
Tomorrow will be brighter
If I get through today
For those looking for literal cleaning advice, you can clean your bathroom to “Swish and Swipe” and dust your knick-knacks to “Feather Duster Shake.” But whatever you do, don’t miss “Go ME!” and “Lullaby for Me,” which give you a really gaping window into the tremulous, twitching mind of the Fly Lady devotee, who yearns for someone to sing to her, yearns so desperately and palpably that she has to sing to herself. You can’t sing yourself a lullabye, Fly Lady. It’s like tickling. There is no reflexive case.
So, here’s my challenge for this week:
I’m hoping that with Fly Lady’s audio aids and the inspiration from Joshilyn’s silverware post last week, I can rectify this situation. Yes, there are flower seeds in my silverware drawer. Who knows what else is in there? If only I had a catchy tune for this situation…
Donkey cookie cutter and echinacea seeds,
Belong in with the baby spoons my kid no longer needs!
The Tupperware is useless without the lids for all
So I’ll keep them in random places I cannot recall
The hot and sour soup I ate was made without the meat
I’ll keep the lid forever just because it was so neat!
Grilling tools don’t fit in here, the handles are too long
Maybe they’ll get shorter if I put “hope” in my song!
Hey, is part of this challenge posting “after” pictures? Is that, like, a requirement? Heh. I did finish the CD project, but I have not yet excavated all the casettes. I’m planning to take an “after” picture of the beautifully organized media area as soon as that happens. Fly Lady would say I could do it all in five minutes a day over the next several weeks, but I prefer to devote a few awful hours to it this week some time. All I need is a shovel, a burlap sack, and a deaf ear.