I sit here typing on my couch in my nice, clean living room.  In my downstairs that is guest ready.  That is a very relaxing thing, especially with no guests on the way.  Not that I don’t like guests, but there is anticipation and excitement and expectations that go with guests that while not bad aren’t relaxing.  A very cool aspect to my nice, clean downstairs, I’m not the only one who cleaned and picked up. All three helped.  Yes, even Clara pitched in.  I am not the worst mom ever, and I am not the worst housekeeper ever.  I will pat myself on the back now.

As I picked up the house today, I thought about all those videos of soldiers surprising their wives when they come home.  I’m going to admit to a secret, the thought of my soldier surprising me terrifies me.  Possibly because last time he deployed, I got really lazy and did nothing around the house.  I thought I had a couple more weeks to get the house in some kind of order.  When I got a call from Los Angeles, well, four hours weren’t nearly enough to bring order to the disaster I was living in. Now, I want to do it right.  I want the house to sparkle and shine like he’s never seen before.  I want to organize things that haven’t been organized yet.  I want to blow him away.  If he surprised me today, there is still stuff I want to get done, but the house is over all cleaner than it was on the average day when he was home.  But yesterday…when I left for my friend’s house I left before I had finished doing the dishes, school work was all over the table, mail was covering the counter and the playroom was a Lego mess.  Overall, normal for this household, but not the relaxing picture I want Chase to come home to. I have honestly thought about calling him, or more telling him when he calls, that he must do his best to make sure I know exactly when he is coming home.  No surprises under any circumstances.  I want to know everything so I can prepare as much as possible. But is that fair?  Here I’ll admit, that I don’t really want to be surprised, I like the anticipation and the knowing.  But if my soldier wants to surprise me, should I deny him that?  So I have a plan.  Tomorrow starts the moth of April, Chase will most likely come in May.  I will take the month of April to do two things.  Try to establish the habits needed to ensure the house looks Chase-ready every day.  It’s not like I don’t like my house looking this way, and it’s not like those are bad habits to have anyway.  I will also use the time to take care of some of the projects I really want to have done.  I’ve already figured out what projects I want to do before r&r and which ones will wait for redeployment.  So honey, I know you are reading this, if for whatever reason you come home in April, four hours notice would be great just to spruce things up.  After April it’s up to you.  However, if you give me some notice I’ll have a big pitcher of ice tea waiting in the fridge for you.

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