20 Reasons Why Downton Abbey's Mr. Carson Wouldn't Last a Day in My House

Photo by Bas Sijpkes

  1. I don't employ a lady's maid. I clasp my own necklaces, unzip my own dresses, and do my own hair.
  2. My husband doesn't employ a valet. He puts on his own suits, shaves himself, and doesn't own a suit brush.
  3. I often enter the bottom level of my home. It's called a basement and my kids play videogames there. This basement does not have a wine cellar, a scullery, or a little room where someone shines my husband's shoes and darns my boys' Nike Elites.
  4. We do not have daily deliveries of fresh vegetables and recently butchered poultry. Just the UPS guy with boxes from Amazon.
  5. I enter my own kitchen. On a daily basis. To cook. And -- gasp -- to clean.
  6. I answer my own door, drive my own car, fill my own bathtub, and stroll my own babies.
  7. Our grounds (does a backyard count as grounds?) do not have parkland, riding trails, or horses. And they certainly don't have a village. Though a pub would be nice.
  8. We rarely, okay never, have house parties, and if we did our guests would not be accompanied by their valets and lady's maids. Plus, they'd have to sleep on air mattresses in the aforementioned bottom level, um, basement.
  9. I drink tea out of a 24-ounce stainless steel travel mug made in China.
  10. I don't address my boys as Master.
  11. I know, off the top of my head, how many bedrooms and bathrooms are in my house.
  12. I no longer have a footman. Fine, I never did.
  13. We don't use different forks for each dinner course. And we only have one dinner course. There's rarely wine.
  14. Our children eat dinner with us. And they share their opinions.
  15. Our dishes are chipped, our silverware isn't silver, our napkins are paper, and our china came from Bloomingdale's.
  16. I don't place my mail on a silver platter before I open it.
  17. We don't have a hunting lodge in Scotland or anywhere else for that matter.
  18. No one serves me breakfast in bed. Unless I do it myself.
  19. We don't own a gong.
  20. I rarely refer to my husband as His Lordship. At least not since our honeymoon.

Susie Orman Schnall is a writer and author who lives in New York with her husband and three young boys. Her award-winning debut novel On Grace (SparkPress 2014) is about fidelity, friendship, and finding yourself at 40. Her second novel The Balance Project: A Novel (SparkPress 2015) is about work-life balance which is also the theme of her popular interview series The Balance Project. Visit Susie's website for more information.