Monday, February 1, 2010

Slobproofing your House

Disclaimer: This is not my house, though I have sworn not disclose it's true owner!

Since you can't change the locks on your husband and the children, Debbie Wiener of has some great and practical ideas!

1. Think camouflage. Go for more strong color and patterns. Having beige and white in the house is like having another kid! If you choose color over neutrals and prints over solids, you've made a huge leap.
2. Make floors match your dirt. Skip the white travertine. Go for flooring made of slate, mottled stone like pavers, and wood, the more distressed the better. When picking carpet, think how the color will look in six months under the doggie bowl.
3. Put rugs at the entries. That's your first line of defense. Rugs should have colorful patterns and include the color of your pet's fur.
4. Know the power of the pen. Arm yourself with dozens of Sharpies in assorted colors and white out. With those, if walls, fabrics, or furniture get dinged, you can touch up scuffs and blemishes in a jiff.
5. Go darker on Walls. Darker paint hides more dirt. Use a sheen you can scrub.
6. Get them to pitch in. Next time your house looks as if it were ransacked by buffalo on a beer binge, try this: Put a laundry basket in the upended room. Have the kids dump in everything that doesn't belong in that room- shoes, cups, Frito bags, the cat, each other. This cleaners the room and makes putting items away easier.
7. Take this heart. Just as dirt builds immunities, chaos breeds creativity. Disorganization encourages resourcefulness, and relaxing rules fosters flexibility. Show me a kid who feels more loved because his parents cleaned more, and I'll show you a kid with bowel problems!

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