My dirty little secret

In my defence (before I tell you my secret) I have 3 children.  THREE.  The oldest is only just 4 and the youngest is not yet 3 months old.  That is my defence and I am sticking to it.

So my secret?  I am rubbish at housework.  Really bad.  I am shamefully terrible and I am blaming it on my kids.  Anyway, since we moved into our house in November 2008, I have been unable to clean the house from top to bottom all in one go.  Rather I try and achieve a couple of housework tasks a day, and the result?  The house has slipped deeper and deeper into pit of filth.  I have concentrated on visible areas and left the more erm, invisible areas.  This means that the inside of some of my kitchen cupboards have not seen the light of day for a while… some for more than a year…. others for more than that.

Feeling myself losing control, and fearing my reputation as a “good” housewife was a risk, I began searching for a solution.  It wasn’t going to be cheap.  I phoned lots of companies and was perilously close to swallowing my tongue on more than one occasion when the hourly rates were quoted… some were as much as £24 per hour!!!

Eventually I asked on our facebook Wallingford Piper group and The Cleanologists ( were mentioned more than once.  I called and within a couple of days the very lovely Paul was in my house looking at my filth.  I must admit to being a bit ashamed.  Thankfully (and to his credit) he didn’t tut or roll his eyes once.  The rate?  £15 per hour.  I did try and negotiate it down, but he wasn’t having bolt of it – I guess I was pushing my luck anyway as he was almost “cheap” compared to some of the quotes I had had.  I also know that private individuals charge £10-£12 per hour so really, £15 wasn’t too bad.  The promise?  That a team of cleaners would come in to my home and I would receive 20 hours of cleaning to bring my house back up to scratch.  I was momentarily mortified at the mention of 20 hours but I accepted it was probably needed… after all, vaccuming my house takes me the best part of two hours without moving furniture.  I wanted all my kitchen cupboards cleaned, the fridge, all the doors, chairs, table… ALL the dusting, interior windows, upvc… the lot.  A big ask.

There were 2 ladies that spent a total of 10 man hours on my kitchen.  Oh my word, what a good job they have done.  Really good.  I was almost compelled to take pictures of the insides of my cupboards to post in this blog but it would have meant nothing without the “before” pictures (which I would have been too ashamed to post).  The rest of the team concentrated on the rest of the house and tonight?  I am one happy, happy lady.  I am unstressed and thoroughly enjoying my G&T.

As for my husband?  He came home and said “nice and clean in here”… So I will admit to claiming the cleaning as my own.  No need to admit to just having spent £300…  but then he opened the kitchen cupboards and a small sideways glance and a frown… he had me sussed.  Bugger.  “How much did it cost?” he asked “No, no, don’t tell me” then he walked round the rest of the house inspecting the cleanliness.  He was pleased. Not sure what he would say if I told him I am now going to have The Cleanologists in regularly.  I feel as though I have failed as a housewife, but at the end of the day I HAVE 3 CHILDREN!!  My priorities lie with play, fun, development.

One final thing?  For those of you who don’t know, my middle daughter Seren (aged 2) has Down’s syndrome.  The lovely Paul has now become an official supporter of Down’s Syndrome Oxford ( – a charity that supports all families in Oxfordshire who have kids with Down’s syndrome.  He will donate £10 for every one off clean and £20 for every regular clean he gets booked in that mentions Wallingford Piper or Down’s Syndrome Oxford or me.  So far my lovely Facebook Piper community have raised £70 for DSO.  THANK YOU!! Your help and support is much appreciated. For the rest of you who feel like treating yourselves to a cleaner life?  Please mention Piper or DSO to continue the fundraising effort!!

If anyone wants to get involved raising money for DSO in their own event, please do let me know or give me a call for more details on the charity.



  1. karin says:

    Wow! Send him to Cardiff please!

  2. Ellie says:

    Sounds lush! I’m sorely tempted – better start saving! 🙂 I’ve never seen the role of Stay At Home Mother as including being a housewife (outmoded term as far as I’m concerned!) since looking after children takes up plenty of energy and time, so we could also benefit from the Cleanologists here…

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