4/1/09

Raking Shag Carpets!

I grew up with a very non-perfectionist mom. Really, she was the best. She taught me and my sisters so much about domesticity and hospitality. And things did not have to be perfect.  She never expected that from us.

But one thing we always did when we cleaned house once a week was this:

We raked our shag carpets!

This post dates me, I know. Yes, I grew up in the 70s. And yes, shag carpets were in! Every room in our house was covered in shag.

We owned a rake – and I’m assuming it was specially made for carpet raking, because it was not as sturdy as our outdoor rakes.

We picked up the house.

We dusted every piece of furniture.

We vacuumed in every room.

And then we raked.

Every tiny piece of shag was raked to perfection in our home!

Raking was actually my favorite housecleaning job – because I saw an instant change!

What was your favorite household chore growing up?

(Lovely Easter wreath made by my friend Jeannie, surrounding delicious Palm Springs grapefruits that we just brought home from vacation!  Yummy!)

33 comments:

Melanie said...

Cleaning and organizing my own room. I never had to share a room until I was a college student living in a dorm. So I always kept everything neat and organized!

Kim said...

I had to open up the garage door! This was before automatic garage door openers - when we arrived home, I had to get the key, open up the side door and then lift the garage door. This wasn't very fun when it was raining or snowing outside!

linda t said...

One of my very first jobs as a little girl was scouring the mud room sink and kitchen sink every single day after supper. We lived on a farm, so the sinks got dirty pretty fast. I would always pretend I was doing a TV commercial while sprinkling my can of Ajax into the sinks. I have not thought of that memory till this very moment! Thanks for jogging such a sweet time in my life Sandy!

Julie Gillies said...

Oh, I remember the blue shag carpeting at my Gram's house. Ahh, the memories!

Ummm, in full disclosure I have to say that I didn't have a favorite chore, unless you count cracking open hickory nuts on the fireplace hearth. I'd do that the live-long day.

Stacey said...

Oh yeah, I remember raking the carpet! I bet the girls that are younger are saying, "What?"

My favorite job growing up was cleaning the bathroom. I remember really liking the smell of Comet...still do.

Kathryn said...

I'm not sure any of it at the time was a blast...but I do remember the smell of Lemon Pine Sol. I loved the clean, fresh smell throughout the house. I still love that! I may even go mop now...or maybe not. :)

Jen - Balancing beauty and bedlam said...

Oh my goodness - the memories. One of my household chores every week was ALSO raking the shag carpet. That is so funny. I loved to see how pretty it would get and what lines I could create. My mom kept a beautifully clean house. Hers is still always orderly. I didn't get that gene. :)

Lora said...

That's so funny! We had a carpet rake, too. I loved the way the freshly raked carpet looked:)

As for my fave chore: I actually enjoyed ironing when I was much younger. Now my ironing just pile up.

Carrie said...

We didn't rake our shag carpets, but vacuuming it into rows was always an instant reward. My favorite chore, then & now, is working in the garden. I used to love it because I would rip out everything in garden beds (teen angst), now I love it because of the beauty.

A Touch of Country said...

My favorite chore was polishing the old brass door knobs in our home...i got such great satisfaction from turning the brown looking knobs into sparkling brass knobs!

We too had a carpet rake...they said it would prolong the life of our carpets...although I really don't think it did!

My worst chore picking up walnuts on our lawn!!!Arrgh!!(*)

Melissa's Thoughts said...

oh my goodness.. you totally brought back a great memory I had forgotten. My dad used to rake our shag carpet on Saturdays before my mom came home from work. Thanks for bringing up the past.

Carol said...

Oh yes, I remember raking our gold carpet in the '70s! Oh the memories!
The very first chore I helped with was washing, rinsing, & drying the dishes. I remember having to stand on a chair to reach the sink. My sister & I would argue over whose turn it was to wash or dry! We didn't have a dishwasher until I was in college.

Linda C said...

My main daily chore was drying the dishes. But I would often offer to "trade" jobs with my mom - she would do the dishes and I would do the ironing,(for a family of 9!) while listening to the radio (in the late 60's,early 70's)or watching tv. I just loved seeing a garment all wrinkled become smooth and lovely:) My mom's least favorite chore was ironing:)

LittleBlueBungalow said...

I loved dusting! I have a picture of me dusting at two years old. My mom was on top of teaching us household chores.

Jeanie said...

Oh my goodness! I'd totally forgotten about raking the shag carpet. Our rake was made out of wood and had pegs that you raked with...not tines like an outside rake. Too funny! I loved raking that rug..we only had shag in our living room as it was "the thang" to have in the 70's. I also had an orange and green bedroom. Yikes! Very Mod Squad.
My favorite chore was vacuuming but my least favorite was the one I usually had to do..unloading the dishwasher. It was not built in and I had to stand on a chair to reach down into it. The lid lifted up like a washing machine lid but it was a big, heavy butcherblock. I haven't thought of that forever!
Thanks for the memories...I love your blog.
Jeanie
http://writinginks.blogspot.com

Rindy R said...

I have never heard of raking the carpet - although we did have wall to wall red shag. My favorite chore would be when my mom put me in front of a drawer and told me to organize it! I guess I'm just a dump and sort kind of girl!

Maureen said...

This brought back memories. We didn't have shag, but good friends did and I was always impressed by how clean the rug look after being raked.

As a kid, I loved the smell of Comet powder. I didn't mind cleaning the bathroom because we used Comet on everything.

Stacey @ The Blessed Nest said...

I always liked dusting and wiping down the kitchen table and counters. Still do! I guess that's because it's easy and quick! I also always liked the lemony Pledge scent when dusting!! Dishes and weeding the garden were my least favorite chores! :)

suzie in mo said...

waxing the wood floors was my favorite! it was quiet and relaxing and you could really tell that you had accomplished something. i think when i left home they never waxed again!

An Accomplished Woman said...

My favorite chore was and still is cleaning the kitchen. I love everything about it.

Does that make me weird?
Cynthia

laurel said...

That is hilarious!! I have never heard of raking the shag carpeting! Hee hee!
My favorite childhood chore (and favorite adult chore, for that matter) is hanging the wet laundry on the line. Being outside, in the sunshine, and feeling so blissfully domestic was/is my favorite!

CathyBB said...

I'm new to your blog, but I just had to chime in today and say YES, I loved raking the shag carpets, too! Ohhh, how I miss that rake... the carpets not so much! =)

Thanks for your blog full of fantastic ideas!

Myrna said...

The MOST fun was waxing the linoleum (hall kitchen bathroom and kids rooms!!)Once a year, mom stipped the tile and reapplied wax, my younger brother and I were the buffers, we skated over and over every inch of the floor wearing an old pair of my dad's socks! lol! It wasn't too many years until mom got wall to wall carpet in all but the kitchen and bathrooms.
Mom always gave me the choice of working in the kitchen or working in the yard. I choose the kitchen, and she did the yard---and we were both happy. I could get the weeks baking done and make a meal for our family of 7 by the time I was 11 years old. I'm so grateful to be "at home" in the kitchen.

Gina said...

I love that! I remember the shag but we never raked ours! That's too funny. I remember cleaning the bathroom with the Ajax, I loved using that stuff!

kathi said...

OH yes, I raked too! I also remember that my mother would always turn on marching band music on Saturday mornings to get us up and working! I think she liked to "spring clean" every Saturday!

Shannon @ Silver Trappings said...

Oh, how funny - I remember raking the carpet, too! You're right, it was very fun!

When we moved into this house 3 years ago, we put all new carpet in. We put in frieze carpet, which is actually kind of a short shag. But it's khaki. And pretty. Really! I promise! It does not look like the long, thick orange shag we had as kids! But I could totally use a rake on it!

Shannon

Laura said...

Well believe it or not it was dusting to Crazy for You by Madonna every week. Too funny!

Dawn said...

I remember our shag carpet! LOL It was blue and my mom raked it a lot. It was either everyday or every other day. I can't remember which.

My main chore was cleaning off the table after supper, but I didn't like to do it. The only other chore I had to do was to keep my room clean and my bed made. One summer my mom decided that we should help with the chores. Her main cleaning day (laundry, changing sheets, cleaning the bathrooms, etc.) was on Monday. I "lived" at the swimming pool, but it was closed on Mondays and so that summer my job was to clean the kids' bathroom, which I hated. I guess I didn't do a good enough job because that was the only summer I remember ever having to help with the chores my mom usually did.

Betts said...

I only liked to do things where I could see a change. I didn't like dusting or doing dishes because no one could see you'd done anything. Washing windows was fun. Now I don't like it.

Kimba said...

Oh my goodness! Raking the shag carpet was so much fun! I used to beg my mom to let me do it.

We had shag in every room of the house. There was a stunning multi-colored gold carpet on the whole first floor, a beautiful red and pink mix in the upstairs bedrooms and an orange/gold mix in the basement.

We used an actual outside rake that was kept just for that purpose. I used to make my mom crazy because I would lay on the floor and braid the shag pieces into these tight little braids. Then she would try and rake it and the rake would get stuck.

My mom JUST got rid of the last shag from her house a couple of months ago. She finally refinished her basement and got new carpet. I couldn't decide if I was thrilled or if I wanted to cry.

Kimba

Sweet Caroline said...

You raked your carpets? I never thought to do that. I did draw lines in the shag with a vaccum cleaner. Shoot, the raking would have been funner. :)

Cher said...

Haha! I STILL rake carpets! I lease rental units in a large apartment community and we rake our model unit carpets....makes them look 100% better! :)

JanMary said...

I too was a raker in the 70's!!! My parents had 3 shag carpets- cream, tan and dark brown.

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