She’s a Filthy, FILTHY Girl

Cleaning baffles me. I am horrible at it. And not because I’m like physically incapable of doing it, or HATE to do it. No, cleaning baffles me for the most part, because even the IDEA of cleaning isn’t on my radar.

I WAS going to start this post, “Cleaning has always baffled me.” But this is not this case. I didn’t even REALIZE that I was bad at cleaning until I became a homeowner.

So that my parents aren’t horrified, I will say I was raised by very clean people. In fact, most of my family is practically OCD. My dad is so enthusiastic about cleaning that he has been known to work himself downright sweaty while demonstrating the proper way to clean up a spill. He then of course has to scrub even more vigorously to erase his sweat when it falls on top of the spill. I lived in terror of “scuffing” a wall and I was never allowed to plaster my bedroom with pictures from Seventeen or Tiger Beat, no, I had a designated bulletin board for my Johnny Depp and Gavin Rossdale clippings. And if I wanted a poster on the wall I was to get it properly framed first. So now that you know I wasn’t raised by ruffians, I will continue.

When Eric and I moved in our house, it was disgusting. My husband had been renting the house for 2 years to 6 college boys (I WILL NOT SAY MEN). When I got behind the oven to clean it I found a baby toy. Did one of the college kids have a baby? NO. The people my husband BOUGHT THE HOUSE FROM did. We did a deep cleaning, removed carpet, repainted walls…and I felt pretty good about things. For a while.

When you live in an old house (ours was built in 1920) nothing ever feels THAT clean no matter how much you scrub. The tile in our bathroom is old, the grout has stains, the windowsills are brown, the linoleum (sigh of shame) yes linoleum in our kitchen looks dirty no matter how often you mop. And we have exactly 3 feet of closet space-no exaggeration. There is no where to put anything.

Before you think I’m endangering Gigi with dirt, I will say I don’t love clutter and I try to put things away, if there is a place to put them. I keep Ginger’s room tidy, and I clean the toilet a lot. Eric and I are pretty good about always doing the dishes and laundry (when we run out of underwear)…but it didn’t occur to me until recently that people like, clean their baseboards. And they do it weekly? They scrub their grout? And correct me if I’m wrong, but vacuuming and sweeping are more of a daily/weekly occurrence as opposed to a monthly one? Do you all really dust? And disinfect your trashcan? No one told me! Or if they did I was too busy playing with modge podge or macrame to pay attention.

Like I said, it’s not that I hate to clean, it’s that it honestly doesn’t occur to me to clean something until it’s visibly dirty. And even then, not until it’s so filthy that I would be embarrassed if someone saw it. AND EVEN THEN, it might take me some weeks to put down my craft projects and get to it.

And speaking of craft projects this brings us to the reason for this post. People often say, “Oh my gosh! How do you get all that done?!” Referring to whatever small, flamboyant project I am no doubt forcing them to review.

And I now realize how I accomplish as much as I do. I don’t spend my time doing what most people do.

1. I hate sleeping
2. I don’t have Facebook 🙂

If I have 30 minutes in my possession I will never, ever, choose to use it to scrub my cabinets. I will always choose an art project, or exercise, or baking, or posting on my blog. I want to clean, I don’t want people to be afraid to come to my house, but honestly I forget.

I’m fairly sure if I put my mind to it I could succeed, but I’m also fairly sure I will not put my mind to it.

Lately all I can think about is Ginger, sewing, felt, and leather. Which is why my house currently looks like this:




and why my baby has resorted to eating this:


and why my hair always looks like this:

Messy 5

I did however make these!



And a whole line of AMAZING leather mobiles that will be in the shop in the next few days!

I will also be posting a tutorial on how to make a shirt for your baby that looks like this:


Except not EXACTLY like that because it will be finished and also because I later ruined that shirt with an experiment.

But back to how I suck at cleaning. Is it really wrong or lazy of me to want to hire a cleaning person? I feel like I should take pride in my home and clean it myself…then again, I figure if I ate out like 3 times less a month that would pay for it! Thoughts? Help? Tips? Ginger will be crawling soon and I’m sure all hell will break lose.



The Filthiest Girl You Know


  1. caitlin

    i feel you lady! i too am really bad at cleaning. i am actually great at cleaning the kitchen, but laundry, putting the clothes away, and scrubbing stuff- no way. soooooooo, i confess, we hired a house keeper.

    she comes once every two weeks and it is amazing! we justified this because of my busy schedule and the fact that i am in a really tough graduate program.

    we decided that we would keep the house picked up in between visits (which doesn't always happen) and then deb can do bathtubs, windows, etc.

    plus, we have started talking to deb about the gospel-we put on conference talks while she's here. so i tell dan that we HAVE to keep her because it is meant to be 🙂

    so basically, rationalize it any way you need to, it makes life so much less stressful.

  2. Kimberly Ngarupe

    I am all about hiring a cleaning lady, as well. Do it.

  3. Staci

    Your question made me think of this post.
    And I think you are adorable as ever, messy house or not.

  4. Jana

    I am absolutely no help in this department. I am terrible at cleaning and I hate it, to boot. All I want in life is a cleaning lady. Is that selfish when I don't really have a full-time job or a child to take care of? Yes, probably. So instead we live in perpetual disarray around here.

  5. Krista

    THANK YOU for being brave enough to put this out there! 🙂 I have felt exactly the same way and am so afraid of when I have a baby crawling around my house! I thought I was all alone in the world because it doesn't occur to me to wash my shower curtain or wipe down walls.

  6. Club Narwhal

    you are SO my hero! i also support your crafting over cleaning movement. way to be!

  7. the fowlers

    i totally agree with you: it's a fact that older homes will just never look as clean as newer homes. there's something in an older home that makes the dust stick. they never look as clean – not unless you totally gut them and redo everything, but then it's technically a "new" house, right?

    by the way, i still can't really believe the wonders you have worked on that house. i remembered it as being truly gross. you've definitely made it lovely.

  8. hanner

    we also live in an old house (1890?) and it is constantly just dirty. just old house dirty. i did a deep spring clean a couple of weeks ago, spending 4-5 hours getting on my hands and knees and scrubbing like i've never scrubbed before, and i was so proud of myself. i think i thought i'd never have to do it again. and then a few days later, everything started feeling kind of funky and dusting again and i groaned at the thought of cleaning again.

    i get major satisfaction out of being tidy and doing cleaning stuff but i am totally with you… it's really hard to want to spend your spare moments cleaning the freaking toilet.

  9. tori.nelson

    I am kind of jealous of your anti-clean thing. I am a chronic stress-scrubber, as in "I'm having a bad hair day, I need to mop it out. I'm having a fat-just-ate-a-whole-cake day, I should dust it out." Crafting sounds like a lot more fun!

  10. Alison

    STACI! Those are my thoughts exactly! I just read that post! I thought it might sound snotty to say, but honestly in south provo I feel like I could find someone who would love to help out with the things I suck at, and be happy to have the work! but then at the same time I felt guilty. but that post is just what i meant! Thank yoU!

    EVERYONE ELSE! THanks for the support! I'll have you to dinner at my MESSY HOUSE!

  11. Breanne King

    I totally know what your talking about! I really thought having a sparkling house just meant cleaning the toilet once a month. I understand the cleaning lady thing. I've thought about it, but then I realize I do nothing and I LOVE sleep (altough I do hate eating so thats how I have so much time to play solitare). But I used a cleaning lady 2 times right after Archie was born, she was pretty good and I know she would love more work. Let me know if you're intrested! Or, HELLO, uncle Alan owns a Molly Maids franchise! Haha, I'm totally encoraging the cleaning lady thing!

  12. JenErik

    remember our flat in London? Enough said. Ginger is a survivor. . . and she has the best mom in the world.

  13. Julie and Kyle

    im laughing so hard right now. here's my advise…. as a mother of 3 and an OCD cleaner, i say keep doing what you are doing. BUT, hire a cleaning girl. You can get one to come as often or as less as you like and have them clean the major things, like bathrooms and kitchen. then you dont have to worry about it. plus, in provo you can get one for like $9 and hour, im sure. TOTALLY worth it.

  14. Mame

    Let's just say my 2 year-old is afraid of the vacuum. That should tell you how often I use it…..

  15. Luz e. {Wee Waldorf}

    love it! my house is just as untidy. and Lola loves her new lola owl!!

  16. Amy

    I just want to say Thank You!! Thank you so much for having the courage to post reality! I too am horrible at keeping my house clean. I have a 3 year old monster in a baby suit and a 3 month old that feeds 24 hours a day. 😛 My home is a mess every minute of the day that my girls are awake. Laugh! We all try to be Supermoms but it just doesn't happen all the time! 😀 We are only human! I try not to focus a whole ton on making sure my house is clean, instead I am trying to enjoy my little ones while they are little! It doesn't make a difference to our little ones if the house was spotless all the time, because all they will look back and remember are the wonderful times they had playing games and laughing! That is what really matters. 😀

  17. Matt and Jennae Porter

    It only gets worse when your children are actually able to help you in making the messes!! And it stays clean for far less time, too. One thing that motivates me to clean is setting a timer for whatever amount of time (usually 30 minutes- I do this when kids are asleep or I turn on a 30-min show for them) and seeing how much I can get done during that time. And I just clean whatever I feel like cleaning. I'm always amazed at how much I can get done when I don't allow for distractions. I am kind of an OCD cleaner though. I get anxiety when my house is super messy or cluttered. A few of my friends have cleaners come in occasionally… we just haven't gotten there because I'm too cheap. Just enjoy the time with Gigi! You'll have plenty of years of your life to have a clean house, and you won't enjoy them nearly as much as you do the "mess" right now.

Leave Some Love

Your email address will not be published.

You Might Also Like

Super Duper Fly Dance Off!

WHOOOOOAAAA! IT HAS BEEN SO LONG SINCE I HAVE WRITTEN A BLOG POST I almost didn’t know if I could remember how!!! HA! But, I did, and I’m so glad, because I AM NOT kidding you it feels so damn good to be abusing ALL CAPS AGAIN! You know what also feels really really good? …

Build an Awesome Brand Workshop!

Hi! I’m Alison. Over the past 10 years building my business I’ve put my name in lights, danced with thousands of hot babes who believe in their own awesomeness, spoken at huge events, worked with fortune 500 companies, created six-digit yielding courses, hosted nationally recognized online dance contests, started the podcast of my dreams, and basically …

Alison’s State of Affairs April

Reflecting on the source of my strength: my bling. HAHA. But actually just ask Laura, the photographer, what mood I was in. Because it is more accurately reflected below. Well hello!!! Another month has come and gone, and so now it’s time for ALISON’S STATE OF AFFAIRS! Yes,  yes, I know I’m sharing a lot with …

Don't Miss a Podcast!

You're busy and we want to make listening to the podcast EASY. Sign up below to stay up to date!