We finally had a professional carpet-cleaning service come out and clean our living room yesterday. I swear, just prepping for them resulted in cleaning up about four cubic meters of dust and debris, not to mention going through stuff I hadn't even looked at in over five years and deciding that 80% of it could be summarily thrown out. Even when we put all our crap back where it belongs, I suspect it will look 100% better, just for that. And I think Matt's and my allergies will be significantly less troublesome, because we got rid of so much dust (or at least they will be once all the remaining dust settles).
And a good half of the stuff we moved out of the living room is stuff that, to be honest, we don't need to keep around. So this weekend, I think I'll be making a trip to drop that stuff off in our storage unit, and that, too, will improve our house.
The carpet cleaner gave me the name of an enzyme cleaner they recommend using on "pet stains" which we'll have to pick up and try. And she made some suggestions for when we get around to having the carpet torn out and replaced (which we'll have to do eventually).
They couldn't get all the stains out of our carpet, but they got most of them, and even the worst ones look much better. And they raked the carpet to fluff it back up, and the whole things looks like 2000% better.
We spent last night walking around barefoot or in socks, to keep dirt to a minimum while it's drying. I worried there might be trouble with Alex, who really likes to keep his shoes on all the time, but I asked Matt to prime him on the drive home, and he did great.
So great, in fact, that he didn't want to put his shoes on this morning when it was time to go to school. Aheh.