How much time do you spend cleaning house on a weekly basis? Do you share my dream that you could snap your fingers and the house would be perfectly clean and tidy? For most of us, cleaning house is one of those necessary evils. A clean house is essential to keep our homes safe and healthy. According to the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO) getting rid of clutter eliminates 40% of housework. So it would make sense that if you want to reduce the amount of time you spend cleaning, you should reduce the amount of clutter in your house. It’s important to distinguish between cleaning and de-cluttering. To clean is to remove the dirt, grime and germs. To de-clutter is to remove the items that are no longer used or simply to return items to their designated ‘homes’. Below are 10 tips to reduce the amount of time you spend cleaning house.
1) The less you have, the quicker cleaning will be. Keep only the things that you love.
2) De-clutter daily. Have all family members pitch in. Set a timer for 10 minutes. Or create a basket for each family member for their “clutter” that must me returned to its home before watching TV or eating a snack.
3) Delegate household cleaning tasks. Kids can make their beds, empty trash, load and unload dishwasher, vacuum and dust their bedroom and clean their bathroom.
4) Keep cleaning supplies under each bathroom sink for easy access.
5) Use multi-use/all purpose products. Fewer products to purchase and store.
6) Listen to music, a podcast or talk on the phone to pass time while cleaning.
7) Clean the house on the same day each week. Establish the same routine with kids cleaning their room. Maybe Saturday mornings work for your family.
8) Host a book club or dinner club. Having people over regularly is great motivation to get your house in order.
9) Be comfortable while cleaning. Dress in comfy washable clothing.
10) Let go of perfection. Settle for “Good Enough”.
What time-saving tips do you have to keep your home clean? Please comment below.
My kids will be out of school soon and it almost sends me into a panic. The trick to a great summer is finding a balance between structured activities and downtime. If we schedule every moment with camps and play dates, then summer becomes just as hectic as the school year. On the other hand, if we don’t have anything planned, the kids become bored and that can make for a miserable summer. Follow these tips to ensure that you and your family have a summer of fun-filled and relaxing activities.
1) If you do not use a paper calendar or if you use an online calendar, print out the summer months and place in an obvious place in your home for all family members to see. Be sure to include the pre-planned activities such as sports camps, swim lessons, etc. Then you can write in new events as they come up.
2) Make a “wish list” of things to do over the summer. Get the whole family involved and let each child choose at least one activity. Maybe the roller skating rink or a visit with friends that you don’t have time to see during the school year.
3) Research free things to do in your community. Check out the public library, recreation centers, free concerts in the park. When you find activities that would be fun and of interest to your family, add them to the calendar.
4) Just because it’s summer, doesn’t mean that any routines should go away. Routines are still important but maybe they can be loosened up a bit. Beds still need to be made, belongings put away, chores still need to be done! Be sure to build in reading time each day.
5) Remember to relax. Schedule “downtime”. It’s good for kids to be a little bored. It encourages some creativity within them.