Making a Clean Sweep

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Last week I mentioned some of my summer projects. Last week, I accomplished one! Yeah! Three more to go.

This week my focus is getting things cleaned up around here, including those dreaded closets. Care to come along? Or just feel my pain from afar. Either way, I’d love the company.

Cooking is fun for me. It usually results in something that tastes good (hopefully) and that makes people happy. Cleaning is not fun for me. Though the end result does feel good. It’s something I have to push myself to. Thankfully, my kids are all big enough to help and take some responsibility in corralling some of our messes.

One of the things that helps me is that I assign different jobs to different days and try to do them every week. I learned this from The Sidetracked Home Executives. (That book is all about me and my bad habits, in case you were wondering.)

The concept is that if each job has a day of the week to be done and if you don’t happen to get to it, you just skip it until next week. Then you’re not backed up. You just have to make sure you do it the following week — or it will take four times as long. Ask me how I know; me, the mother of a 4-year old boy who shoots to the left.

For example, Tuesdays are bathroom days. If I do it every week, I can get my time down to 7 minutes per bathroom. (Yes, I’m an overachiever, and I’ve timed myself.) If I skip it for like 8 weeks, you know like a first trimester of pregnancy, well then it takes a lot longer. Trust me. Doing things often really does save time in the long run.

Needless to say, a lot of my jobs got “skipped” last week due to cooking and swim lessons. So, it’s time to get back on the wagon.

Monday – pay bills, check finances, overhaul laundry room, CLOSETS!
Tuesday – clean bathrooms
Wednesday – change sheets on beds, all rooms vacuumed (each boy has a room), FishBoy11 swabs the decks(mops),I supervise, thorough cleaning of kitchen
Thursday – FishBoy 11 vacuums stairs
Friday – supervise all jobs, including all rooms vacuumed, windows washed, furniture dusted
Saturday – catch up, planning
Sunday – rest

Got great plans for the week? Share them with us to inspire and encourage.

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  1. I am just so bad at this. I have tried flylady several times (and it still helps because my house has never gotten as bad as it was when I first started) but I cannot stay motivated. It is hard now with a new baby, and I have been telling myself that when she is a little older and can be entertained a bit more it will get easier, but right now I can’t get anything done it seems!!!

  2. Just thought I’d mention that 3 of my kiddos have one bathroom chore they have to do each morning as part of their morning chores. I do have to check to make sure they actually do it, though!! My 9 yo boy wipes down the toilet, my 7 yo boy wipes the sink and counter and my 5 yo girl puts out a clean towel and takes the dirty one to the dirty pile. They don’t do a perfect job but they do enough that it cuts my weekly cleaning in their bathroom down drastically. And when we first started doing it I would buy cheap baby wipes for them to use which made the jobs easier for them.

  3. So let me get this straight…you miss a day, you just SKIP it until next week? That’s so neglectful, yet, so FREEING. This is the biggest reason I never did a task-a-day chore list. I’d get overwhelmed every other day from not getting to the task the day before.

    Oh, I might just have to try this. If I start the habit now, I’ll be in a routine before school starts. Genius!

  4. I just went back to daily chores after several years of serving the “tyranny of the urgent” and feeling ball-and-chained to the laundry. I still do the everyday clean-ups, but here is the chore schedule:
    Sun.-planning day (this includes couponing/lists, clean out van/purse), but no major chores
    Mon.-kitchen (clean entire kitchen, /inventory all food, clean out fridge, meal plan
    Tues.-bedrooms (kids sort out theirs, usually involves heavy supervision and some sort of hickory switch)(change linens, sweep, dust etc)
    Thurs.-laundry (wash and put away as much as possible)
    Fri.-floors(sweep/vacuum/mop all main level floors) & putting away any remaining laundry
    Sat.-“ooops” day (if I did not get something done I do it now)
    I like this pretty well. I LOVE only having about a 24 hour period of dealing with laundry. (I think the key to doing laundry like this is to make sure you have enough clothing/towels for the week, without having so much that it overflows the drawers/closets when its all done and put away). Since it sounds like you have some older children could you address having children help? (I did read your post already about your son using the wetjet.) I have my children, (4,4,5,5, & 7) sort out their own rooms and pick up other messes they make in the house (full time job!) They also do the dishwasher sometimes, use swivel sweeper, take trash out, and help get laundry down two flights of stairs/sort it and put some of their laundry away. Do you have any other thoughts on what children are capable of doing? I really want to teach my kids a good work-ethic. And I just need their help now.