What's the truth?
When I'm busy, especially with writing, something has to give, and that's the house. There are times when I've let things go completely for months due to a combination of illness and deadlines, but the fallout (as you can see in the before and after pics) is too hard to deal with.
Years ago I discovered the Fly Lady. It wasn't long before I unsubscribed to her notices because the constant emails on what I should do around the house drove me crazy. I also had a huge issue with her saying to get dressed first thing each morning. One of the perks of being a writer is being able to write while wearing pajamas. But a couple of her ideas made sense to me then, and I still use them though I have no idea what she calls them. I seem to remember snazzy names for things so check the site if you want her official take on the tasks.
This is my Keep the House Liveable daily list:
1) Do the dishes
If the kids did what they were supposed to the night before (unload, load and start) then I skip this step. More often than not the sink looks like it had a party overnight, and it's up to me to clean up. But this is always the first thing I do if it hasn't been done. Nothing like an empty sink to start your day. The kitchen just looks better. The Fly Lady sure is right about that!2) Put in a load of laundry
With two adults and three kids in the house, I can't afford to miss a day without doing a load, sometimes two. With three swimmers in the house, we go through many towels, too! By doing a load in the morning, I've got a big item crossed off my To Do list. Of course, folding is another matter. I don't mind wrinkled clothes and the cats like to sleep on the pile on the bed, so folding is one of those things I save for when I'm talking to someone on the phone or the pile gets so high the peak deserves a name!3) Clutter Buster
If there's something left out in the Great Room or kitchen that doesn't belong, it goes in that person's crap baskets, something I learned about in this article. You can read about me implementing them at our house here.This step is key for me and why my office in the pics above became a nightmare. Clutter is one of those things that I can overlook and even picking up for five minutes can make a big difference when it's time to get back to your normal routine.
4) Spot Clean
I'll take five minutes to 10 minutes, to spot clean whatever needs it most that day whether that's the kitchen counter, bathroom, table, walls, shelves or floors/carpets when the dust bunnies are more the size of hares.
The key to doing this quick is having the right equipment handy. For floors: broom, dustpan, Swiffer, vacuum cleaner (depending on what the floors/rugs/carpets needs it.) For dusting: a feather duster makes it easy-peasy. For surface cleaning: I have two spray bottles that I've filled myself. One contains a mixture of vinegar and water. The other is a mix vinegar and Dawn dishwashing liquid. This will pretty much tackle anything I need it to and is inexpensive to make.So in just a few minutes, I can do the bare minimum while life is crazy-busy to keep the house from being a total hazard. Then once things slow down I can get back on track and do some real cleaning.
Do you have any cleaning tips you'd like to share? Comment below and I'll pick one winner who will receive a fleece throw, chocolate, hot chocolate, bookmarks and an autographed book!
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