If you ever find yourself standing in your house, looking around thinking, "Where do I even begin?" Then you are like me. And most of the time I feel so overwhelmed at all the things that need to be cleaned that I just give up. This week was the first week I used a cleaning schedule and it has made a really big difference!
The schedule and format I use are extremely official. I got a piece of white computer paper out of the printer and an orange Sharpie. (I think any color works, it doesn't have to be orange.)
Step 1: BRAINSTORM: I asked my husband to help me make 2 lists-Things that need to be done on a daily basis and things that need to be done each week at least one time.
Step 2: Once you have this list, decide what you want to do on which day and type it out, write it out, draw it, cut pictures out of magazines of people doing these tasks..somehow, make a chart..there are actually a lot of free templates online that you can use.
Step 3: Show it to your husband and see if he sees anything that needs to be moved around. Example: I planned to clean the frig out on Friday so that we could use up anything about to expire over the weekend and replenish on Mondays..but...trash day is on Wednesday so Ryan suggested to clean out the frig on Tuesdays so it doesn't get all stinky over the weekend and remain gross until Wednesday. OR If you tend to have company over the weekends, I would clean the bathrooms on Thursday so that you don't have to think on Friday when your guests are coming, "Are those bathrooms clean?"
Step 4: At the end of the week, decide if you have left anything out. Last night, as I was folding Brody's laundry I realized that I NEVER iron, but that it would be nice if I did. So I asked Ryan if he had a night that he wanted to devote to studying (he's getting his MBA) and I would use that night to iron a few things.
Here is my schedule:
Daily tasks-load/unload dishwasher and put away any hand washed dishes, do at least one load of laundry each day (more if necessary), pick up clutter, make beds, wipe off counters and sweep floor after meals
If the daily tasks already seem like a lot try this-3 times a day, set a timer for 10 minutes and do as much as you can in 10 minutes. If you're on a roll one of those times, keep working, if not..just work for 10 minutes..even if you have a baby on your hip or you're wanting to watch the next episode of something.
(This works well for husbands and children too...it's like a challenge, how much can you get done, ready. set. go.)
For your daily tasks, just think..what do you want to wake up to in the morning? Dishes in the sink? Toys and clothes lying around? That's up to you!
Monday- clean the bathrooms (we have 2), this means toilets, sinks, and the shower and tub. I don't worry about the floors yet, that's a different day. I usually grocery shop on Mondays too.
Tuesday-Empty trash cans (tomorrow is garbage day!), clean out the frig, and do some ironing ( I don't have a place to set up an ironing board and leave it, so I will probably do this for a few minutes at night once Brody goes to bed)
Wednesday-Wash sheets and put them back on beds, or wash and change them and put fresh ones in closet, use the Swiffer Vac
Thursday-Deep clean the kitchen (last night I filled up the sink with water, vinegar and baking soda and used that concoction on a rag to wipe behind appliances on the counter, wipe down the appliances themselves, clean off cabinets and stove top, and then finally clean the sink) and also I sweep and mop (wet Swiffer) the tile floors (2 bathrooms and the kitchen)
Friday-Dust (especially our ceiling fans..yuck!) and use our big vacuum cleaner (even use that little hose thing to get up under furniture)
Saturday and Sunday-Use these days for yard work, cleaning out the car of the mess we make each week, and to do any big projects or just catch up on something you didn't quite get to or needs more attention.
Your sweet hubby can certainly help with these tasks and probably wants to add one or two of his "manly" tasks to the list himself. Example: Ryan loves to work in the yard so he wants to do that a few days a week and he doesn't mind vacuuming. We really enjoy doing weekend catch up or projects together as a family. Have a little one that needs tons of attention and lots of weekend projects? Switch off doing the 10 minute clean up challenge and take turns working/playing with baby.
If you know you are always really busy on Tuesdays..don't say you're going to do much on that day. If you get on a roll one day and you're child is napping a long time or you have created an awesome Pandora station that is really motivating you..it's okay to work ahead, you may even get extra credit.
Always remember that a clean house isn't the most important thing!
Some people don't have a kitchen to clean, dinner to cook, or clothes to fold. I try to remember this every day and to never complain about grocery shopping. Poor me, I have to go to this store where any food I want is available and I have money to buy what I want. AND..I have to carry it up 2 steps into the kitchen from my car. :)
Trust me..I complain a lot..but sometimes I hear myself and wanna punch me. Yes it get's hard to shop with an 11 month old..but "BIG picture" is what I have to remind myself.
Make a list somewhere of the "projects" that need attention on the weekends. We have 3 on the whiteboard now..organize A, B, & C.
Start small if your house is really messy.
I love using vinegar, baking soda, and lemon juice to clean.
This is a blog I read and used a lot of her ideas!