What to do When
Would you do anything for your children? Sure, you would. As mothers we typically do our best for our family – take care of their needs. While talking to my newly married daughter about things in general, I mentioned my blog’s new look and upcoming posts. She then asked if I would do a post on doing household cleaning chores. Both she and her husband work full time and they find, like we all do, that keeping the house in order can become a chore…and build up. We don’t want this...
My first advice to her and all homemakers would be a phrase I believe to be so very true.
‘Clutter begets clutter’
Once things are left laying around on a table or in a room it seems to become an open invitation to lay other things by its side. I have a true to life situation at this moment. We still, yes still, have some Christmas decorations laying in my green room, my beautiful retreat. My plan this year is to organize my Christmas decor storage – we had a time this year finding some ornaments – Darling Daughter can attest to that! So, there they lay on the bed in my lovely ‘retreat’. Well, then I rearranged my built-in shelves – the things I removed I then stacked in the green room – to put in storage – they’re still there. But wait, that’s not all! There’s more. I have books from the library stored in there – you know my fondness for books – I’m admitting to having over 30 books checked out right now. Whew – did this become confession time. The bottom line is – when something that doesn’t belong is layed around it becomes a magnet for more things.(resisting the urge to stop and to put that room to rights!)special note – if you don’t have time to put away everything that may have accumulated – have a basket handy to put those things in to address at a later time.
can be divided into categories: Daily, Weekly, Monthly, and Seasonally
My Job is Picking Up
That’s what I used to say as a stay-at-home mom when my children were younger, until I learned to teach them to clean up after themselves. We used to sing the clean up song, ‘clean up, clean up – everybody clean up…’ I wonder if she remembers that song! The point here is to avoid the clutter dilemma – pick things up and put them away. Which leads to another principle:
Everything has a place and everything in its place
This really applies to home organization -which if you’re not there can take some time. I’d recommend taking one room at a time using the box method. Have one box for things that stay in that room, one box for things that go to other rooms, one box for storage, one box for donations and one box for trash. That way, if you’re unable to finish as you’re organizing, you can still keep things neat. Evaulate that space, that drawer, asking yourself – what is this space used for the most and determine places for things so that all in the family know where tape, keys, scissors…etc. go.
The Dailies:In the Morning
• Make up your bed. This does the most for your bedroom in keeping it looking good
• Provide a laundry basket either out of site – or a cute one if it has to be part of your room’s decor –pick up all dirty clothes.
• wipe down bathroom sink and put away or store in a cute way toothpaste etc…hang towels on rods or hooks. Have personal toiletries stored out of the way in baskets or containers –My daughter shared that she’s taken a dishwashing wand filled with a combination of soap and vinegar to scrub down the shower after use – this is a fantastic idea – if you don’t have time to wipe down after showering (while still there) at least rinse the shower from soap and hair. Have a spray bottle of cleaner near toilet spray and use a few squares of toilet paper to wipe down seat – no real need for expensive wipes.
• unload dishwasher from the night before – if full and cleanedIn the Evening
• Gather Trash – businesses hire cleaning companies to keep their space and offices clean – one of the first things they do is empty the trash. I think this goes a long way to adding to a ‘clean look’ to a room.
• Sort mail immediately as it comes in – don’t put it away to ‘look at later’. Junk mail can accumulate fast and takes time to sort. If you can – trash it outdoors before it comes into the home.
• Wash dishes as you use them. Don’t you love living in this time where we can rinse and place dishes in the dishwasher – it’s better to have them there than on the counters and in the sink. You can then add lunch and dinner dishes to have a full washer to operate while you sleep.
• Wipe down kitchen counters
• Dust mop the floors quickly. I have a cool wet/dry mop with interchangeable heads – one to mop and one to dust. Well worth the investment -or you can use a swiffer type dry mop.
• Straighten and fluff couch pillows and blankets, tabletop decor etc.
• Set major chores on a daily schedule: one a day can be done in the morning or evening – whichever works for you
Monday – whole house vacuum
Tuesday – quick dust then mop floors
Wednesday – clean mirrors and smudges on windows
Thursday – clean tub and shower
Friday – take one chore for the week: 1st week – dust furniture; 2nd week clean out fridge and clean oven; 3rd week wipe down smudges on walls at light switches, backsplash, and use duster to get cobwebs; 4th week vacuum or use a lint brush on furniture (if you have pets you may need to make this a weekly chore)
Saturday – do laundrey, sweep front porch – shake out mat; clear out fridge and make grocery list.
I’ll write a post later for Monthly and Seasonal chores – taking care of our homes can be a joy. One of my favorite things to do is to play upbeat music while I clean – it lifts my spirit and encourages me to move at a quicker pace. Music makes all things better, in my opinion. What do you recommend? Do you have a schedule?
Final word – if you’re like my daughter and both you and your husband work full-time – enlist his help (I have to give my Son-in-Law praise – he does a wonderful job helping with household chores). Guys like specific things to do – and with encouragement and appropriate praise – you make doing these things together a wonderful undertaking. There will always be ‘his’ and ‘hers’ chores in the home – but by picking and choosing those things that can be shared – makes life much easier….
Final – final word. I just thought of another phrase we used to encourage our kids while doing their work…
Neatly, Sweetly and Completely
I would encourage them to do whatever they were asked to do with this frame of mind. Grown-ups could use that advice too.
I am sharing this post with these Delightsome blog parties:
Inspire Me Monday
Nifty Thrifty Tuesday