Sunday, September 25, 2016

Care.com: Here are a few Good Reasons to Take Off Your Shoes When You Walk in the Door

Care.com: Here are a few Good Reasons to Take Off Your Shoes When You Walk in the Door

"There's nothing more annoying that having someone walk onto my newly-scrubbed kitchen floor with their dirty shoes. My "remove your shoes" rule means less dirt to clean up and a cleaner home, and less work is very attractive to me!

Taking off your shoes saves you money, too. Your flooring is less likely to get scuffed, scratched or torn when you walk in slippers or socks instead of hard soled shoes. Plus, you won't need to clean your flooring as often, which prolongs the life of the finish and reduces damage over time.

If you ever visit me, you'll need to take off your shoes as soon as you walk in the door. Don't worry. I have cute slippers for you to wear. I look forward to doing the same if I ever visit your home!"

PopSugar: Why Everyone Really Should Embrace the "No Shoes in the House" Rule

PopSugar: Why Everyone Really Should Embrace the "No Shoes in the House" Rule

by Sarah Latta

It's been a long day at work. You're unlocking the front door with one hand and juggling a week's worth of groceries in the other. The last thing you think of doing upon entry is setting your bags down to take off your shoes, right? Here are five solid reasons why you should.

Your Perfect Space: Are your carpets making you sick?

Your Perfect Space: Are your carpets making you sick?

"In my home we take our shoes off before going inside, as one thing I know for sure is shoes worn all over the place can track some nasty stuff through a house, which manifests as toxic dust that can really impact your health.

Imagine you walk along or across a road even once a day. If you live in a town or city it will likely be a busy road. All of the nasty chemicals from passing cars, exhaust fumes, etc. are being picked up on your shoes. Then you go home and walk those same shoes through your house… Not a good scene for your health – especially if you have young children who spend a lot of time crawling around on the floor! It’s a fact that most household dust is tracked in from shoes with a significantly smaller proportion coming in from outdoor air."

It's Controversial

Forever Amber: 4 Unexpectedly Controversial Topics That Are Practically Guaranteed to Get People Talking on Your Blog

The internet is roughly divided into people who always remove their shoes indoors, and who think anyone who doesn’t do this is a disgusting slob, and those who don’t remove their shoes, and think those who insist on it are a bit uptight, really. Whichever side of this argument you fall on, you can guarantee a furious backlash from those on the other side – it’s like the Windows/MAC debate, basically, only much more heated.

Dip your toe (either shod or unshod) into these troubled waters at your peril – it will generate a LOT of discussion, but it probably won’t end well. (Oh, and be prepared to be told at least a dozen times that Canadians and Japanese people ALWAYS remove their shoes. Then prepare to be told the same thing a few dozen MORE times. Did you know that in Canada and Japan, it’s really frowned upon not to remove your shoes before entering someone’s home? Because in Canada and Japan, it’s really frowned upon not to remove your shoes when entering someone’s house. It’s also like that in Canada. Oh, and Japan! And Canada!)

That is why I get hundreds of visitors to this blog. Rarely less than 120 a day.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Changing Room Policy

GL1 Leisure Centre in Gloucester, England, announced on Twitter that they would be implementing a shoes-off policy in their changing rooms:






In Europe, it is pretty common for shoes off to be required in pool changing rooms. Here in the UK, that is a little less common. I remember being shocked when I was 16, when a shower block at a French campsite required shoes to be left outside.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Mommy Outside the Box: Take Your Damn Shoes Off.

Mommy Outside the Box: Take Your Damn Shoes Off.

"At the front entrance of the daycare that my daughter goes to there is a big bold sign that says PLEASE REMOVE YOUR SHOES! I have, for the five years we have been part of the daycare, removed my shoes every single time I walked though that door. It doesn’t matter if my shoes are “clean” – that is I’m not tracking in mud or snow, the shoes come off no matter what. And every single day (well week day) I have watched somewhere in the neighbourhood of half the other parents completely ignore that sign. They trudge in with their flip flops, running shoes, even their winter boots. They open that door, with the big bold sign, completing ignoring the plea to take off their foot wear.

I know you’re asking, is this really a big deal? And the answer is yes, it is a big deal. It’s not such a big deal for maybe the healthy five year olds. Or the adults that run the joint, but down the hall and on the left is a room full of babies. Some just a few weeks old. All of them spending quality time on the floor exploring their big colorful room. Their little immune systems are a work in progress. They deserve, and we should expect, that they should be able to spend their days in an environment that isn’t contaminated with things like E Coli and C diff. Now I know this is a daycare and daycares are full of all kinds of bugs simply because they are full of kids. So what do we do? We enforce things like hand washing. We teach kids to cough into a tissue or their elbow. We tell parents to keep obviously sick kids home. The daycare keeps the centre as clean as possible with daily, weekly and monthly cleaning regiments. And we take our damn shoes off."

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Boundaries Training Again

I was once again delivering a training course on professional boundaries in London. As usual, I brought up my shoes-off policy as an example of a boundary in everyday life. I made the point again, that many people don't have the confidence to ask for shoes-off in their homes, lacking the ability to assert themselves.

A lady attending the course made another interesting point about my shoes-off policy and boundaries. She asked me about workmen removing their shoes and health and safety issues. I pointed out that a shoes-off policy is an informal boundary, unlike laws and regulations, so exceptions can be made. Then she said:

"But if you make lots of exceptions to your rule, then friends who normally take their shoes off might start keeping them on. That's how boundaries can slip."

I thought this was a really insightful point about boundaries.

It is absolutely true that making lots of exceptions can cause inconsistency. So if you have a shoes-off rule, but then you make an exception for a party, then you might start letting your friends keep their shoes on for less formal visits. Then you might start neglecting to take your own shoes off. Then you might start being less bothered if your children fail to remove their shoes. Consistency is really important.

Sunday, September 04, 2016

The Better Have: Leave your worries, and your shoes, at the door

The Better Have: Leave your worries, and your shoes, at the door

Now let’s do a simple exercise:

Raise your hand if you like to clean your floors…

Raise your hand if you like to dust…

Raise your hand if you want your floors getting marked up…

Raise your hand if you want poop tracked all over your house…

Do you see where I am going with this?

Vogue: Visiting a No-Shoe House? Here’s What to Do

Vogue: Visiting a No-Shoe House? Here’s What to Do

"Most houseguests wouldn’t bat an eyelash should their host request that they kindly remove their shoes upon entering. That is, a houseguest in, say, Stockholm or Tokyo. But stateside dinner-party etiquette typically does not entail leaving one’s kitten heels at the door. So you can imagine my surprise when, upon entering a friend of a friend’s apartment, I was asked to leave my sandals on the welcome mat. As someone who grew up in a naked house, where shoes were definitely never expected anywhere past the foyer—my father is Hawaiian and so going barefoot is a cultural norm—my surprise didn’t stem from a place of complete bewildered horror, as much as it was an unexpected encounter among the New York set."

Netmums: Shoes In the house!

Netmums: Shoes In the house!

Forum discussion. If this was Mumsnet, there would be a lot more hostility to those with a shoes-off policy.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

The Telegraph: 25 amazing things you probably didn't know about Moldova

The Telegraph: 25 amazing things you probably didn't know about Moldova

24. You'll have to take your shoes off

When you're entering someone's home, it's considered impolite to leave your shoes on. Leave them at the door. The house rule applies in most formerly Soviet countries, for hygiene reasons. Guests are almost always provided with slippers.

It is the Moldovan Independence Day today.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Seagrass Rug



My new seagrass rug arrived this week. With my tendency to like oriental stuff, I decided a while ago that I wanted a seagrass rug in my new flat. It's a beautiful natural material.

It's not a cosy rug that you can sink your feet into. It's more like giving your feet an hard massage, delivered by a Thai prison inmate. Not everything in life should be too comfortable.

It should be fairly easy to maintain, but you would probably make a mess of it by walking on it with your shoes on.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

My Housewarming Party





Yeah, I really do have friends in real life.


In order to maximise attendance at my housewarming party, I held my housewarming party on both Friday and Saturday evening, giving people the option of attending either day. I decided to invite an absolutely huge number of people, guessing that most people would decline. I was not too worried about overcrowding my apartment. A housewarming is about having a nose around the new home. People will only stay as long as they please. As it turned out some people only stayed for one drink and a guided tour, while others hung around quite a while.

I got eleven guests attending on Friday, plus the baby of one couple. I had been expecting thirteen. I had expected only five on the Saturday, but I actually got eleven adult guests on the Saturday, plus five children. That made a total of 22 adult guests. A family I had not seen for a while showed up unexpectedly. I also had a surprise appearance from three nurses who were working that day. They came during their tea break, which made me feel very special. My boss was the last guest to arrive. She was a but disappointed to find all the other guests had gone home before she arrived, but it was nice to see her and have a chat.

I told everyone on the invitation that they would need to remove their shoes. One girl obviously hadn't read that bit as she asked "Do you want us to take our shoes off?" Well, yes. She was not wearing socks and did not seem to have expected to be going barefoot. She had been warned. A colleague I work with closely must have forgotten about it. She managed to get halfway down the hallway in her shoes before I shouted "Wait! Stop!"

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Mateos: 5 Tips for people with costly floor carpets

Mateos: 5 Tips for people with costly floor carpets

The second deadliest carpet killer from time immemorial is the shoe. Don’t ever let anyone near your carpets and rugs with shoes no matter how much they insist on keeping them on. Stains from shoes are not only hard to remove but they also deplete the quality of the carpet, especially the soft ones.

NH Flooring: How to Keep Your Carpets Looking Newer For Longer

NH Flooring: How to Keep Your Carpets Looking Newer For Longer

Stop mess getting into your home in the first place by asking guests to remove their shoes. Unless they are Carrie Bradshaw, and are afraid of losing some seriously expensive footwear, your guests shouldn’t be put off by this request. If you want to get all scientific, researchers have shown that it takes 17 steps to remove all the dirt from your shoes. That’s 17 potential ‘oops’ moments all over your carpets.

The Earth Child: Here’s A Few Important Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Wear Shoes In The House

The Earth Child: Here’s A Few Important Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Wear Shoes In The House

Not only do shoes contain bacteria but they also contain germs, chemicals and oil or petroleum by-products. The bottom of your shoes are full of plenty of chemicals and pathogens that you do not want to spread all over your home then walk barefoot on later.

Thursday, August 04, 2016

Housewarming Party Invitation

I'm holding an housewarming party in my new apartment in a couple of weeks. I've sent out a lot of invitations, mostly to colleagues via email.

I stated in the invitation that shoes would need to be removed at the party. I've had some people confirm they are coming and other people decline due to other plans, but so far I've not had any comment on the shoes-off request, which is interesting.

Wednesday, August 03, 2016

HoneyColony: 3 Compelling Reasons To Take Your Shoes Off At The Door

HoneyColony: 3 Compelling Reasons To Take Your Shoes Off At The Door

"Toxic waste and dangerous pesticides can be found everywhere these days. According to a study by the non-profit research group, the Battelle Memorial Institute, something as simple as treating your lawn can track toxins into the house. Another study from Baylor University found that people who live near asphalt roads sealed with coal tar have an increased risk of cancer from toxins, and an EPA study found that dangerous pesticides could be tracked into homes on shoes as well, settling within the house as dust particles.

Something as natural as a rainy day could also add to the toxins and pesticides on your shoes. The rain contributes to the spread of toxins such as gasoline, as well as other chemicals that could have long term affects on your health and contaminate the air, food, and environment of those you love."

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Shoes-Off Sign for my New Apartment



I bought this off Amazon and put it up on the front door of my new flat. It had some handy self-adhesive strips. I think having the sign in German comes across as a little less officious, plus I am very much an Europhile.