We're really, really bad. Not as bad as Plaiditudes 18 would have you believe, but bad. But we've been busy, really. Since the
new year, we have:
1. begun a new semester at school;
2. played a lot of tennis;
3. finally found another massage place since the one we liked has relocated and we can't find it;
4. agreed that massages on tables without face holes just aren't worth it, even at $8 an hour;
5. enjoyed having Christopher apologize repeatedly for not believing Alissa about the lack of use of cleaning products;
6. taken Frenchy to the vet several times, including one nighttime trip in the heavy rain to have him x-rayed;
7. been relieved when Frenchy recovered nicely without any medication, with only a change in food;
8. read a number of books;
9. worked a whole lot;
10. found Pasar Majestic, a neat street/market full of fabric stores;
11. been to 'college night for juniors' at the HS;
12. let go our maid (see items 5, 13, 14, 15, 22, and 24);
13. hired a new maid;
14. composed an extensive list of maid-like duties (see below);
15. continued to marvel that such a list is necessary;
16. been to Singapore and bought some really bright orange birkenstocks, only they're called betulas;
17. used the sewing machine;
18. bought beautiful fabric to make napkins (see above, item 10);
19. a bad case of tennis racket envy (see item 2);
20. a new boss (no worries, he's nice);
21. had a hair cut and several pedicures;
22. enjoyed having Christopher apologize repeatedly for not believing Alissa about the lack of use of cleaning products (hence the
23. wondered why our Kijang (car) was having another alignment done on it when we thought it was going in for an oil-change;
24. convinced Christopher at 5:15 am that the grout in the bathroom was NOT painted, but dirty instead;
25. been thinking about planning Annaliese's birthday party;
26. turned 44;
27. sniffed a lot of meat for the faint whiff of formaldehyde (worth a whole Javalogue unto itself);
28. signed up Arianna for soccer;
29. went to Chinese New Year show as it's the Year of the Dog;
30. reviewed Annaliese's PSAT scores (all good); and
31. enjoyed cooking, unfettered by staff.
The list of maid-like duties:
1. Make Ibu and Bapak Happy.
2. Ask if you don’t understand or know what we want. Ibu works and Bapak is at home. Bapak will tell you what to do. Do not
wait until you see Ibu to ask.
3. Only wash clothes that are placed in the laundry baskets (this goes for all bedrooms).
4. Wash clothes when there is a load of wash of a type of wash… i.e., wash all brassieres and underwear on one day (four or five
brassieres and 8 or 10 pairs of underwear)… not a load of four pairs of underwear a day. Wait to wash a pair of jeans until you
have three or four pairs of jeans to wash.
5. Only use a little bit of laundry detergent if it is a small load.
6. Do not use bleach. Only Ibu uses bleach. Set aside anything you think needs bleach.
7. Use the spray n’ wash, shout, or astonish on stains on the clothes. Never rub at a stain.
8. Put clothes back in the room they came from.
9. Do not iron anything unless Ibu or Bapak asks that it be ironed. Do not iron brassieres, socks, etc... Do not dry brassieres (or
other delicate fabrics) in the dryer. Do not iron on high heat. Read the labels or ask Ibu or Bapak.
10. Use the cleansers supplied. Do not use Clear to clean anything except the mirrors and windows. Ask if you don’t know what
a product is for. Never wash/clean something with water only, even if it is hot water. Always use soap/cleansers.
11. Clean the bathrooms on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Not on Saturdays.
12. Change/wash the sheets on the beds on Tuesdays or Thursdays. Wash the towels on Tuesdays and Fridays (not everyday).
13. Clean the floors so that the grout is clean, i.e., white. We want this for the inside of the house and the outside kitchen tile
counters/wall, floors, and laundry area. Mop every other day. Sweep every day.
14. Flip the bed mattresses once month.
15. Put everything back where it goes. If you don’t know where something goes, ask or set it aside until one of us is home and
16. Do not rearrange things. Pay attention to where things are, so you can put them back in the same place. Nothing is more
frustrating at 5:30 am than to have to open three or four cabinets to find the pair of shoes you wore the day before – or worse, to
go to another room and find them in someone else’s cabinet.
17. Do not stack shoes on top of other shoes.
18. All fresh vegetables and fruits are to be washed before they go into the refrigerator. Nothing goes into the refrigerator
unless it is clean and ready to be cooked or eaten.
19. Clean the shelves in the refrigerator, etc., once a month.
20. Dust every day.
21. Take out the rugs and beat them once a month. Ibu and/or Bapak will help with this.
22. Tell Bapak when something is almost used up… such as laundry detergent. Don’t wait until there is no more laundry
23. Do not tidy up after the girls in their rooms. If they leave a towel on the floor, please leave it there. If they leave books or
clothes in the middle of the floor, please leave them on the floor.
24. Do not work in the kitchen if Ibu, Bapak, or the girls are working in the kitchen. It makes Ibu and Bapak happy to work in
25. If the phone rings, answer it if Ibu or Bapak or the girls are not here. Take a message, but do not say that Ibu and Bapak are
not home. Say we are busy (or resting or eating) right now, and take a message.
26. Never give anything that belongs to Ibu or Bapak or the girls to anyone, unless Ibu or Bapak has said to do so. We will never
have someone come to the house to get something unless we tell you first.