Leave your Worries on the Mat

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When I became a first-time mom in 1996, I started looking at dirt differently. For me, motherhood happened to coincide with the purchase of an expensive wool off-white carpet, but I assure you, my preoccupation with keeping a clean, germ-free house was more about the baby than the Karastan. For the last 15 years, my family and our guests have been kicking all shoes off at the front door.

We started with one shoe basket. Then we had two. We could have had three, even four. It didn’t matter. The shoes piled up and spread out. My entry hall looked like crap. It may have smelled a little like that too – no one complained but I was always self-conscious. Not to mention that my grandmother’s beautiful antique oriental rug, which had served dutifully as our welcome mat, had worn thin from too much sole-rubbing friction.

In an effort to save an heirloom, correct a decorating eyesore, and stave off germs, I bought The Magik Mat. I saw a demonstration one morning on The Balancing Act and thought this might just be a simple, chemical-free, part-time solution to shoe cooties and footwear management. The Magik Mat may not be the most fashion forward mat, but the neutral pattern – somewhere between an organic design and animal print – is totally livable and less of a “decorating don’t” than pre-existing Shoe Mountain. It actually looks fine layered on top of granny’s old rug.

I am hoping this mat does what it professes. Germs are microscopic so it’s hard to tell. Forever the skeptic, I would like to conduct a comparison test to see if there is indeed a reduction of germy residue brought into our home. But until then, I can tell you that there is a measurable reduction of mess in the entry of our home and that the “better” rug is finally protected. Instead of leaving shoes at the door, we now wipe our shoes on the damp Magik Mat, and then walk right on in through the house, and deposit shoes into their respective closets. And that’s certainly a step in the right direction!

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