Toilets and Yardwork and Floors... Oh My!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

When we moved, I knew that more than doubling our living space was going to be mostly a positive experience. However, there are a few negatives that have come to light in the two months we've been living here.

Like toilets. I have three of them to clean now. Gross.

And floors. Something always needs to be vacuumed or swiffered or mopped.

That damn lawn will not.stop.growing.

We're trying to get into a groove with keeping up with everything, but it's just HARD. Things might be a little extra challenging right now since we're still trying to get on top of all of the home improvement projects on our list, but I know that it's tough, even while living normal, everyday life.

I've seen a number of "cleaning schedules" pop up on Pinterest, and have pinned a bunch, but some of them are ludicrous. Who has AN HOUR every day to clean? Come on, now. There is enough going on with daily chores (dishes, laundry, cooking, dinner clean-up, baby baths and bedtime, etc.) without adding an hour of cleaning to the mix.

So, for those of you who are successful at keeping a clean home... how do you do it? Did you set a schedule for yourself? Do you set aside time every day (I hope it's not an HOUR?) to help keep up? Do you tackle a room at a time, or a task at a time (i.e. one full bathroom at a time, or all toilets, then all floors, etc.)?

I have never been the best homemaker in terms of the cleaning part, but I hope to set some good habits while I can, so this doesn't get out of hand!


Megan October 23, 2011 at 9:25 PM  

Hire it out, lol! :) Every 4 weeks, wish we could do every 2. In between you only need to do the basics (wipe counters, de clutter, swiffer, etc). Works out to $25/week for me. Prob. cheaper by you.

Bethany October 23, 2011 at 9:41 PM  

Id love to have a cleaning lady...but thats not in the budget. So I made a schedule. I gave each day a room or a big task, and set 15-20 minutes aside to do that task. Then I have my daily tasks- dishes, laundry, de-cluttering, opening the mail, picking up toys, etc. The sweeping/moping I give its own day, but I usually run the sweeper twice a week. I think it helps to write it out, because Im one of those weirdos who gets a strange satisfaction from crossing things off of a list. Otherwise I would be like, eh, it can wait!

Sarah,  October 23, 2011 at 9:41 PM  

I use Her motto is "You can do anything for 15 minutes!"

Kelsey October 23, 2011 at 9:44 PM  

With a newborn in the house, I try to set small realistic goals for myself. For example, Monday I want to vacuum, Tuesday I'll clean the master bathroom shower, Wednesday I'll do laundry, etc. I keep the house neat overall and I just hope it makes up for the fact that it's not always clean. Lol. Good luck!

Gia October 23, 2011 at 9:47 PM  

I am not a fan of doing a little a day. It just doesn't work with our family and schedules. Someone always has to work late, or go to karate or hip hop classes or I have rehearsal or Logan is into SOMETHING. So we do almost all of our heavy cleaning on the weekends. Our 13-year old is a HUGE help during the week, so we are really lucky. We maintain during the week (dishes, vacuum because of the dog, etc), but deep clean on the weekends.

Brooke,  October 23, 2011 at 9:54 PM  

I don't have a cleaning schedule ... i have enough schedules in life, don't need another one :) I do a load of laundry every night, in hopes by the time I get to the weekend I'm not having to do any (sometimes that just doesn't work), I vacuum on Wednesday evenings since I work from home those days and when I'm done I can get some things done before I pick my son up from before/after school care. On weekends, my husband does the grass cutting while I stay in and dust/mop/clean bathroom, etc. When it's leaf raking season / flower planting, etc. I get outside and help him. It's a balancing act and getting your husband in on the cleaning/clothes washing helps too !

Anonymous,  October 24, 2011 at 4:17 AM  

My secret is, cheap mexican labor!

Why make my dear husband climb a precarious ladder to clean the 16 foot ceiling when i can get Jose to do it.

It's just so easy heather! For the price of a starbucks coffee a day, you can have a whole menagerie of workers!

- Floreen xx

Kari October 24, 2011 at 7:30 AM  

I break it up into nightly tasks. Monday I dust and vacuum. Tuesday I clean the kitchen. Wednesday the bathroom. Thursday I take care of any miscellaneous things. Friday I grocery shop. Sunday I do laundry and take care of the pup (bath, clip nails, etc).

It works for me...I don't have a toddler and I don't have an hour!

Vanessa October 24, 2011 at 7:59 AM  

Honestly? I have a cleaner. She comes once a week for 4 hours and it is the money best spent, honestly! It really isn't very expensive. I still feel I have a million chores to do (oaticularly because we are a bit OCD about our new house) - there is no way I would want to do more. Those few hours of extra us time are totally worth the expense to us.

MB October 24, 2011 at 9:38 AM  

We don't have a maid...or a baby, for that matter.

Laundry is either Friday afternoon or Sunday morning - so I do all of that at once. I hear it's not that simple with a small child who wears 2-3 outfits a day.

Bathrooms - I do at least one whole bath at a time (mainly the master bath). The half bath downstairs and the guest bath don't get used daily - so they get a quick once over every couple of weeks.

Floors - I do these all at once too. Vacuum them all and then mop the hardwoods.

I like to think that I can do all this during the week, but working 730-530, going to the gym and cooking dinner...sometimes it just doesn't happen. I just carve out a few hours on the weekend to knock it all out at once (with the helping hand of my husband). :)

Maureen,  October 24, 2011 at 10:28 AM  

No kids here and I cant bring myself to shell out $65 an hr for a cleaning lady cheapest I have found so far. So every Sunday I get up, put on my workout clothes like I am going running but instead start scrubbing.
I do the upstairs first starting with the bathroom then toilet and finally mop/swiffer the floors. My husband vacuums. And we both do the laundry the rest of the day. I usually dust once a month.

Leanne October 24, 2011 at 11:29 AM  

I don't have a baby (yet!) but what we do works really well for us and I hope it continues working. My hubby and I have Johnston Family Cleaning Night most Thursdays. We make a list of what needs to be done and then divide and conquer. Sometimes it's deep cleaning and sometimes it's just surface stuff. If we have visitors coming in that weekend it takes close to an hour, but most weeks it's about a 20 minute job. He does bathrooms (we have 2 full baths) while I vacuum the whole house (1200+ sq. ft). We try to be as efficient as possible - running a load of laundry when we start and switching it when we finish cleaning, popping a casserole in the oven after work, cleaning, and when dinner's ready, so are we! It's not for everyone, but it works really well for us!

Marta-Jane October 24, 2011 at 11:45 AM  

I can recommend FlyLady method. It works great in my case, and I'm actually having fun while cleaning, which has never happened before.

Vanessa October 24, 2011 at 11:59 AM  

woah, cleaners cost $65 an hour? I think we pay in the region of $11 an hour! And that's in London, which I always think of as ludicrously expensive!

Pie October 24, 2011 at 12:19 PM  

I use FlyLady as well. I haven't followed too well yet, but on the days I do follow, it is 15 minutes well spend!

Maureen,  October 24, 2011 at 2:54 PM  

Sorry I meant to say an average of $65 for two hours as that's how long it will take to clean the whole house. I live in Manhattan

Anonymous,  October 24, 2011 at 4:35 PM  

Not a good suggestion, but I recently took a vacation day to stay home and clean our house. We recently moved and tripled our space. With our old house up for sale we've been maintaining two properties (yard etc) and going crazy. We're close to selling the other house (fingers crossed) and I'm really hoping we have a few weekends between leaf clean up and snow shoveling where we can hire a mother's helper to play with our little one and both work on indoor projects and cleaning. I think if we ever have a second child we're going to have to find a way to work a house cleaner into the budget for a little while.

Kelly October 26, 2011 at 6:38 AM  

I use a weekly house cleaning schedule that I found at in the google search at the top of the page put in 'weekly house cleaning' and it's the first result that comes up. It's actually an excel file that you download, then you can totally adjust the frequency and specific chores. For example- for my house I had to add 'fill birdfeeders' and 'clean litter boxes' and things like that. The chores are marked w/ back slashes- so when you print it out (mine is taped to my fridge) when you complete the chore you put a forward slash through to make an X. I start my schedule on the 1st monday of the month (it works easiest w/ that template). Any days before the 1st monday are chore vacation!

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