I have lots of time and you might think that I could put in that 2-1/2 hours and not need a housecleaner. Theoretically, yes. But:
1. It would take me longer and be painful. I can't move around as quickly or as easily and getting down on the floor is just agony for me.
2. Chances are I just wouldn't do it. I would skip steps and then be dissatisfied with what I had done, or I would do half-steps and give up.
3. Monthly means I plan for it. I think about what I will have organized or arranged better the next time she comes. A steady improvement thing.
This time it seems like the house was a little the worse for wear than the last time, probably because I wasn't vacuuming quite as much (I am sticking with the Friday Floor Day thing and using the little handheld vacuum for the spilled kitty litter and stuff like that in between) and I wasn't cleaning faucets and so on as much either. So I could see a difference and feel a difference. I don't feel as panicked, like it is all going to go to hell the moment I turn my head away.
Because she is doing the dusting and floors and baseboards and so on I can feel free to concentrate on longer-range things, like windows. I can wander around and clean a window here and there and spend more time on organizing my shit. My new file cabinet came yesterday. That baby is going to so make my office nicer and easier to work in. I still need to work out a way to use my desk right. I tend to have piles of things that I need to "get to". I know there are ways to sort this kind of thing but I am not sure what way I will use. Without my having to worry about the whole house, though, I can think about it.
It was a good decision, this monthly housecleaner.