Thursday, January 8, 2015

Let's Talk Housekeeping

Urghhh Housekeeping.  It is one of those endless jobs that never seems to be done.  Back in the day I used to be an awesome housekeeper.  I was one of those people who had to wash the tub out,  right after I had taken my bath.  Yeah, it was a sickness of sorts.  LOL  As time went on, I wasn't quite as crazy but I still liked things clean and organized.  I actually enjoyed cleaning and got some sort of a high from it.  When I would decide it was time to do a deep clean, I would pull the entire house apart and work about 12 hours a day for a couple of days until it was all done.  I loved those days.  I was young and energetic and I didn't get all achy and sore.  Flash forward a few decades and the deep cleaning goes a different way.  A list is made twice yearly.  I do about half of the chores on the list here and there, get bored and forget about the list.  I do clean my house each week.  It is your basic clean that takes me 3 to 4 hours depending on how detailed I get.  After "cleaning day" more times than not, I just ignore things until the next week.  Day by day things fall apart little by little.  Sometimes I will give it "a lick and a promise" mid week.  My problem is this, if I start even a small cleaning chore, it snowballs into doing a full clean.  It is my tangenty nature.  I have a hard time stopping once I begin.

I have decided that this year there has to be a better way to keep house, a way that doesn't take a huge chunk of one day, a way that keeps the house looking cleaner longer.  So this is the year that I try to fully embrace cleaning the Clean Mama way!

Clean Mama is an awesome blog that teaches a very simple cleaning routine.  Each day there are the same 4 chores that are to be completed to keep things looking good on an ongoing basis.  These are to check the floors, check for clutter, wipe the counters (kitchen and bathrooms) and do one load of laundry.  In addition to this there is a larger task to achieve each day.  Monday is bathrooms, Tuesday is dusting, Wednesday is Vacuuming, Thursday is floors and Friday is a catch all day.  This day can be used to catch up on something that didn't get done or to take on one of the monthly deep cleaning tasks.  Saturday is the day to strip the sheets and wash towels and Sunday is a day off from a daily chore.

I have tweaked this schedule to better fit my life.

Monday ~ bathrooms
Tuesday ~ no task because it is craft day!
Wednesday ~ dusting
Thursday ~ vacuum and wash floors (I have dogs so I can't go a day between vacuuming the hardwoods to actually washing them.  There would be too much dirt on them already that I would be mopping on top of.)
Friday ~ Catch up on anything, do a deep cleaning chore or do some ironing.
Saturday ~ wash sheets (my towels will be done during the week as part of my load a day)

As mentioned before, each month there are a few deep cleaning chores to be done.  I like the idea of just doing one of these tasks here and there on a rotational basis.  It seems more doable than trying to get through a huge list in a small period of time.  If I do the monthly deep cleaning tasks I will know that there isn't an area of my home that is getting forgotten.  Yay no more making the huge cleaning list!

The beauty of this plan is that the housekeeping shouldn't ever take over a huge portion of the day.  It is all broken down into small achievable units.  As much as the house will never be totally pristine clean at the same moment it will stay cleaner on an ongoing basis.  The only thing that might stand in my way it that tangent thing I have going on.  I need to train myself to do the day's tasks and then walk away.  Tomorrow is another day to find something new to clean.  I'm sure that the dirt will wait for me.  LOL

The Clean Mama blog is a really great motivator.  When I read a post on cleaning the ceiling fan, it makes me want to go and clean my ceiling fan which would otherwise be ignored.  This month they are doing a challenge on clearing up clutter.  Just doing one simple area a day gets the job done. Here's the plan!

Clutter isn't much of a problem for me.  My mother was a clutter bug and it drove me crazy.  ;)  I need things to have a home and am continuously donating things that are no longer needed.  I keep a bag in my front closet that I just put things into on an ongoing basis.  Having said that, I am still checking out the daily challenge and it is surprising what I am clearing out.  Today I went through my jewelry box and found everything from broken watches to old receipts.  It felt great to clean it out!

I'll keep you posted on how this works out for me.  I am giving this a go for January and then will reassess if it seems like a good fit.  Hey, there is improvement already.  I am really bad for not making my bed.  It comes from years of Rob working shift work.  Many days the bed wasn't made because he was in it.  The entire house would be perfect except for that bed and it never bothered me.  ;)  Now I make the bed as soon as I get out of it.  It's all about forming a new habit.  Wish me luck!!



  1. Jennifer I wish you luck. I do something very close the same called "Fly Lady". she also has a Facebook page to send reminders. G

  2. I really appreciate your honesty about feeling achy and sore after cleaning. I thought that was just me! I used to quite enjoy a bit of cleaning, but it's getting harder. Thanks for cheering me up today

  3. I am still blessed to be living in South Africa where we can afford domestic workers. Working all day and coming back to working at home too will drive me batty.

  4. I am awful at keeping up with cleaning... good thing Shawn pretty much does it all! We have a good deal going where if I keep up with the dishes and the litterbox, he dusts and vacuums. Of course, we live in a small apartment so keeping up with things isn't as difficult as it would be in a house, but the mess adds up quickly! I try to stay on top of the clutter; he's not very good with that ;)


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