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Calling all neat/clean freaks! Tell me how you keep your house really clean while hs-

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#1 Halcyon

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:09 AM

Okay, so I need advice. I am a neat/clean freak, organizaiton freak, but have found it very hard to keep the house the way I like while homeschooling. Now, I know the standard advice is "accept that your house will be messy", but let's pretend I can't do that :D

The boys are in spring gymnastics camp for 3 mornings this week, and I've spent basically the whole time cleaning and organizing, and let me tell you, my mood is 1000x better. So how can I maintain this?

Who out there successfully maintains a very clean and neat home while hs-ing? What are your best tips?

#2 wy_kid_wrangler04

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:12 AM

:bigear:

#3 Aggie

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:20 AM

Do you have the means to hire some help? Even a teen once a week would be able to accomplish quite a bit.

Do your dc have chores? Anything you don't have to do gives you more time to do the other things that are important to you. While 7yo is emptying trash, you can be putting laundry away, for example.

I will say that it gets a tad easier when the dc are old enough to help with larger chores. Our dc are able to wash clothes, clean to my standards, keep the kitchen tidy, help prepare meals, etc.

#4 mrsrevmeg

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:24 AM

Do your dc have chores? Anything you don't have to do gives you more time to do the other things that are important to you. .


I second that! It is much easier to keep things maintained when you are not the only one doing the maintenance. I also make sure my kiddos replace books on the shelf as soon as they are done with them. Otherwise we are covered in books by mid-afternoon. Beds get made in the mornings before school begins, otherwise usually not at all.

#5 Classicalmom2six

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:25 AM

I can't have it any other way. I am a total neat/clean freak. I just had a baby by C-section a week ago today and I've been cleaning...I can't help it...LOL It drives me insane for my house to be messy. :lol:

But I have alot of help too. I have 3 teenage girls (17,16,13) who do alot of the cleaning. We have a chore list and everybody knows what's expected and when to do it. My son (10)has chores and so does my 6 year old.

If I see something extra I want done, I either do it myself or I get one of the kids to do it, but it will get done. ;) Its hard and exhausting at times, but to me, well worth it to save my sanity. I can't function in a messy house.

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:29 AM

I'm really glad you asked this question as it's something that really bothers me too! I've had a similar experience to you this week with three of four boys out at Easter football camp and two year old left in front of television while I busily catch up with vaccuuming, dusting, bed-changing, floor scrubbing ... Today we were just supposed to have fun, but now I'm exhausted.

I only started home schooling last September and started off getting up two hours before the boys to do all my chores, until I realised it was making me too worn out to do any actual teaching, at least not with the necessary enthusiasm. These days I tend to do the bulk of tidying, cleaning, ironing and freezer cooking over the weekend when dh does a lot of activities with the boys, but I must admit it's pretty gruelling and I can get very cranky by Sunday afternoon!

One idea that quite appeals is to try to get the boys to help, but I'm still not quite sure whether or not that would just be making even more hard work for myself ...

#7 myfunnybunch

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:33 AM

I am not a neat freak. But I am one of those people who walks around the house and sees a little 5-10 minute job, and thinks, "I'll do that as soon as I'm done with xyz."

Of course I always forget.

So for a couple weeks, as soon as I had that thought I stopped what I was doing and jotted down whatever little chore it might be. Cleaning door handles, light switches, sweeping the garage steps, wipe the bathroom sink mid-week, etc. (Of course I didn't actually drop everything and clean those things, lol.)

Then I divvied up all of those simple jobs on the chore chart for morning chores. Three boys, five mornings a week=fifteen little jobs that get done. Fifteen ten-minute jobs (the average)=150 minutes saved each week.

Cat

#8 Halcyon

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:35 AM

Do you have the means to hire some help? Even a teen once a week would be able to accomplish quite a bit.

Do your dc have chores? Anything you don't have to do gives you more time to do the other things that are important to you. While 7yo is emptying trash, you can be putting laundry away, for example.

I will say that it gets a tad easier when the dc are old enough to help with larger chores. Our dc are able to wash clothes, clean to my standards, keep the kitchen tidy, help prepare meals, etc.


My kids have chores, yes :) They help fold laundry, clean bathrooms, put away clothes, vacuum, sweep garage.....they're great but they're little boys lol.

Don't get me wrong, my house is quite neat and clean. But it's not up to my standards, and when I say "well, lower your standards" I am just unhappy in the house--I keep thinking what needs to be done (go through that pile of paper, reorganize hall closet, etc.)

We might be able to hire someone, but in the past, when we have, I always feel it's a bit of a waste as the maintenance part is what kills me ;) Plus, I don't know how much they'd be able to do about reorganizing, organizing closet, cleaning out garage and sorting older kids' clothes, kwim?
But DH has suggested some help to me many, many times, so maybe I should listen....

#9 Evanthe

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:35 AM

I clean house in the morning after breakfast - pick-up/straighten up things at noon and clean house again in evening after dinner.

Sounds horrible, doesn't it? Our house is always very clean. I think it might have reduced my life expectancy by about 15 years, though.

#10 Halcyon

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:37 AM

I'm really glad you asked this question as it's something that really bothers me too! I've had a similar experience to you this week with three of four boys out at Easter football camp and two year old left in front of television while I busily catch up with vaccuuming, dusting, bed-changing, floor scrubbing ... Today we were just supposed to have fun, but now I'm exhausted.
.


I had to laugh at this because DH called me a few times and said "are you enjoying the little break while the boys are in camp...I hope you're relaxing and reading a book" and I was like "um.....not so much." :tongue_smilie:

#11 Ellie

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:37 AM

Something that helps: Do it now. Whatever it is, do it now; don't wait until later. Make the bed now, get dressed now, clean the kitchen now, fold the clothes now.

Many people find it helpful to have daily routines; for example, get up, make the bed, put a load of clothes in the washer, fix breakfast, wake dc...and do that every.single.day.

Take the few minutes necessary a couple of times a day to allow dc to pick up after themselves. This is *NOT* "taking time away from school." It is part of their learning, and it's necessary for the household to run smoothly.

A friend who had (at that time) six children was very scheduled: they all got up, made beds, got dressed, came downstairs at the same time; had breakfast, cleaned the kitchen, and the kitchen wasn't used again until lunch; they had lunch and cleaned the kitchen, and the kitchen wasn't used again until time to prepare for dinner; ate dinner, cleaned the kitchen, and...yeah, like that. :-) The dc had chores, and the mother made sure the chores were done, as opposed to sending dc off to do chores but not checking on them, and finding out later they hadn't been done, and then the beatings start, lol.

I do NOT believe it's necessary to live in a mess just because we're hsing, but with everyone at home, all day long, it does require us to be *purposeful* about home maintanance, as opposed to being caught off guard all the time because there isn't clean laundry or the dishwasher is full AND the sink is, too, and so on.

#12 Halcyon

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:40 AM

I clean house in the morning after breakfast - pick-up/straighten up things at noon and clean house again in evening after dinner.

Sounds horrible, doesn't it? Our house is always very clean. I think it might have reduced my life expectancy by about 15 years, though.


So what about the deep cleaning and the organization stuff--I get that with a bit more effort I can maintain the house-am thinking about getting up an hour early each day to do so--but the paper work, filing, going through garage and sorting, cleaning out closets, emptying fridge and cleaning, emptying cupboards and wiping down (so basically I guess I mean the jobs that always seem to take more time!) don't get done as often as i need them to. And the larger jobs take more time. I think with the filing and paperwork and organizaing the home office I just like things to look just so, and that's why it takes me a long time to finish them......:)

Edited by Halcyon, 08 April 2010 - 11:56 AM.


#13 Julie in MO

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:41 AM

Hi,
It's just plain hard to keep a lovely house while having the full time job of home schooling! My dd do have chores, but often they are truly busy with their assignments and can't get to the cleaning chores any easier than I can. Here's what I discovered...if you concentrate your efforts on staying organized (no papers on countertops, coats hung in a closet, etc.) then the house doesn't seem to be lacking so badly in a good cleaning. I've had many drop in guests that are impressed with my "clean house" when I haven't actually cleaned it in weeks. One thing I did was to buy a storage bin that I call the dollar bucket. Whenever someone leaves something lying around the house that has a place it could go, I put it in the dollar bucket - they have to pay me $1 to get it back - sometimes it's just trash and they would throw it out anyway (which solves the decluttering issues). Everyone (including dh) learned very quickly to pick up after themselves! :lol: I do look forward to having the time to clean thoroughly someday.

#14 Merry

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:46 AM

it does help a lot to make the house look good. And also it makes it much easier to get to the actual cleaning whenever you get a few extra minutes or hours to do it.

#15 MariannNOVA

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 11:46 AM

I haven't read the other responses so forgive me if something here is repeated.

I can HEAR dirt, dust, clutter, you name it. I cannot do anything unless the house is clean (immaculately clean and uncluttered) first.

Here is what I do: First, I do have Gloria (she was our housekeeper at the hotel) come once a week - Our job here is to make certain we are not making a mess, and if one does make a mess, they clean it up. You take it out, you put it away; you open it, you close it; you wet it, you dry it; you dirty it, you clean it.

The kids make their beds before anything else in the morning - their rooms have been decluttered and I have purchased 'things' so they can store their little treasures and not have them strewn all over their rooms.

De-cluttering has been huge -- I have finally realized that we live in a house built 50 years ago, and 50 years there were no malls, or homegoods, or Tuesday Morning or anything and no one was 'staging' -- you put a vase of flowers on a table, and poof, you had decorated. This has forced me to take a serious look and take serious de-cluttering measures so that we FIT in this house -- btw, our former house was approc 6500 sq feet so this has been a huge adjustment and we are doing it in stages, but we are doing it.

I've gone away from shabby chic - too much clutter; we are doing cottage simple -- the kind of place that when you walk in, you want to take a deep breath because everything looks fresh and clean. It is a snap to keep neat - and it is soothing to the eye. WHICH is what I have found is huge in this whole 'I am here all day homeschooling, I need everything to look neat' thing: If you need things to look neat, then you have to adopt a 'style' that is neat. ;)

Uncluttered kitchen counters, etc. I like things stored behind closed doors (all homeschooling stuff is in a huge armoire - doors closed, books and supplies out of the way).

The biggest step is to align your 'style' and your 'need.' If stuff all over didn't bother me, I would have stayed with shabby chic.

On the cleaning front, I go over everything every day with rubbing alcohol in the bathrooms - showers squeeged after every shower, floors wiped with alcohol -- that kind of thing.

I find that if every single day (except the day when Gloria comes as she does the bathrooms top to bottom - but even then it is easy for her because they are kept up) we make sure everything is the way it should be, then it doesn't take long, and if we miss a day, it's not a bid deal.

HTH - sorry so long.

#16 TXMary2

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 12:30 PM

I haven't read the other responses so forgive me if something here is repeated.

I can HEAR dirt, dust, clutter, you name it. I cannot do anything unless the house is clean (immaculately clean and uncluttered) first.

Here is what I do: First, I do have Gloria (she was our housekeeper at the hotel) come once a week - Our job here is to make certain we are not making a mess, and if one does make a mess, they clean it up. You take it out, you put it away; you open it, you close it; you wet it, you dry it; you dirty it, you clean it.

The kids make their beds before anything else in the morning - their rooms have been decluttered and I have purchased 'things' so they can store their little treasures and not have them strewn all over their rooms.

De-cluttering has been huge -- I have finally realized that we live in a house built 50 years ago, and 50 years there were no malls, or homegoods, or Tuesday Morning or anything and no one was 'staging' -- you put a vase of flowers on a table, and poof, you had decorated. This has forced me to take a serious look and take serious de-cluttering measures so that we FIT in this house -- btw, our former house was approc 6500 sq feet so this has been a huge adjustment and we are doing it in stages, but we are doing it.

I've gone away from shabby chic - too much clutter; we are doing cottage simple -- the kind of place that when you walk in, you want to take a deep breath because everything looks fresh and clean. It is a snap to keep neat - and it is soothing to the eye. WHICH is what I have found is huge in this whole 'I am here all day homeschooling, I need everything to look neat' thing: If you need things to look neat, then you have to adopt a 'style' that is neat. ;)

Uncluttered kitchen counters, etc. I like things stored behind closed doors (all homeschooling stuff is in a huge armoire - doors closed, books and supplies out of the way).

The biggest step is to align your 'style' and your 'need.' If stuff all over didn't bother me, I would have stayed with shabby chic.

On the cleaning front, I go over everything every day with rubbing alcohol in the bathrooms - showers squeeged after every shower, floors wiped with alcohol -- that kind of thing.

I find that if every single day (except the day when Gloria comes as she does the bathrooms top to bottom - but even then it is easy for her because they are kept up) we make sure everything is the way it should be, then it doesn't take long, and if we miss a day, it's not a bid deal.

HTH - sorry so long.


Plain rubbing alcohol? It doesn't leave any film or anything? What all do you use it on? I use Clorox wipes, but they are pricey.

#17 Sputterduck

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 12:32 PM

Well... I have only 1 child and no husband to mess up/reorganize things randomly.

We just clean up as we go. It helps that people show up at our house randomly. There is no way I can let it get out of hand. lol

#18 MariannNOVA

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 12:38 PM

Plain rubbing alcohol? It doesn't leave any film or anything? What all do you use it on? I use Clorox wipes, but they are pricey.


Yes, plain rubbing alcohol in the bathroom -- everywhere in the bathroom. It shines up the faucets, and cleans everything else -- I use the 70% -- have been using it for almost 30 years - I read about using it in a breastfeeding book when I was breastfeeding DD who is now almost thirty years old - have used it ever since.

Those wipes are expensive, and they have stuff in them that I'm not sure I want to use. HTH:)
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#19 Desert Rat

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 12:40 PM

My house is crazy messy right now and it's driving me nuts! I just started working in the afternoons and I'm having a rough time figuring out our new normal. But...I always pick up the house, make beds, etc. before sitting down for school at 8. At lunch I pick up for 10 minutes. While the boys are taking showers and getting ready for bed at night, I straighten for another 10 minutes. I dust, mop, vacuum and scrub one day a week. Today, I hope! :) What helps me is that I have a smaller home, 1490 sq. ft. I also tend to be a very efficient worker so this house takes me about 1.5 to 2 hrs to clean. Once a month I wipe down doors and walls and dust picture frames. I clean out closets as needed, usually about 4 times a year.
I guess I'm good at it because that's what I've been doing in the afternoons now. People hire me to organize and clean their homes! I call it my therapy. I know, I know. I'm sick. :)

#20 Halcyon

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 12:41 PM

I haven't read the other responses so forgive me if something here is repeated.

I can HEAR dirt, dust, clutter, you name it. I cannot do anything unless the house is clean (immaculately clean and uncluttered) first.

Here is what I do: First, I do have Gloria (she was our housekeeper at the hotel) come once a week - Our job here is to make certain we are not making a mess, and if one does make a mess, they clean it up. You take it out, you put it away; you open it, you close it; you wet it, you dry it; you dirty it, you clean it.

The kids make their beds before anything else in the morning - their rooms have been decluttered and I have purchased 'things' so they can store their little treasures and not have them strewn all over their rooms.

De-cluttering has been huge -- I have finally realized that we live in a house built 50 years ago, and 50 years there were no malls, or homegoods, or Tuesday Morning or anything and no one was 'staging' -- you put a vase of flowers on a table, and poof, you had decorated. This has forced me to take a serious look and take serious de-cluttering measures so that we FIT in this house -- btw, our former house was approc 6500 sq feet so this has been a huge adjustment and we are doing it in stages, but we are doing it.

I've gone away from shabby chic - too much clutter; we are doing cottage simple -- the kind of place that when you walk in, you want to take a deep breath because everything looks fresh and clean. It is a snap to keep neat - and it is soothing to the eye. WHICH is what I have found is huge in this whole 'I am here all day homeschooling, I need everything to look neat' thing: If you need things to look neat, then you have to adopt a 'style' that is neat. ;)

Uncluttered kitchen counters, etc. I like things stored behind closed doors (all homeschooling stuff is in a huge armoire - doors closed, books and supplies out of the way).

The biggest step is to align your 'style' and your 'need.' If stuff all over didn't bother me, I would have stayed with shabby chic.

On the cleaning front, I go over everything every day with rubbing alcohol in the bathrooms - showers squeeged after every shower, floors wiped with alcohol -- that kind of thing.

I find that if every single day (except the day when Gloria comes as she does the bathrooms top to bottom - but even then it is easy for her because they are kept up) we make sure everything is the way it should be, then it doesn't take long, and if we miss a day, it's not a bid deal.

HTH - sorry so long.



This is a lot like me-i like surfaces CLEAN, very little on them. Do you have photos?

#21 MariannNOVA

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 12:44 PM

So what about the deep cleaning and the organization stuff--I get that with a bit more effort I can maintain the house-am thinking about getting up an hour early each day to do so--but the paper work, filing, going through garage and sorting, cleaning out closets, emptying fridge and cleaning, emptying cupboards and wiping down (so basically I guess I mean the jobs that always seem to take more time!) don't get done as often as i need them to. And the larger jobs take more time. I think with the filing and paperwork and organizaing the home office I just like things to look just so, and that's why it takes me a long time to finish them......:)


I am doing that this week -- And I did it last year right before we began our school year -- with alot of STUFF happening in between.

I have selected one room a day, and I go in there and go through every drawer, every inch of the closet, the entire room -- when I am finished, the room is cleaned and de-cluttered. DS9.5's room is scheduled for today -- After his room, the house is essentially done and I don't intend to have to spend this amount of time doing it again - btw, I've never until now had the chance to do this in our present home - we've been living here barely a year if one accounts for the time we spent living in the hotel.

As for the everyday paper and stuff, it doesn't come in the house -- junk mail goes right in the garbage - does not come through the door. Mail gets sorted immediately or doesn't get sorted and gets put into a folder - and goes in a file box in the armoire with the school stuff. DH is the worst with receipts for his travel logs etc - they all go in a nice leather covered box - the box sits on his nightstand - it is his responsibility. If it begins to overflow, I put all of it in a shoe box, and the shoe box goes on his shelf in the closet and he starts filling the leather box again.

It's an acquired discipline, I guess, but the effort helps me keep my head on straight.

#22 MariannNOVA

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 12:52 PM

This is a lot like me-i like surfaces CLEAN, very little on them. Do you have photos?


OH - you ARE like me -- I can tell by THAT question! I have a few small framed photos in the master bedroom, some small ones in the kids rooms. One or two on a table in the entry hallway. I've decided that fewer photos make it more likely that guests will look at them - too many are overwhelming - my sister has TOO many in her house.

I have tons of photos that are framed for hanging (haven't gotten them unpacked yet since the repairs here were done) and probably hundreds more in frames that can go on tables - and none of them are out yet.

We are in the process of re-doing a very very large room on the lower level that will be a great room -- I will likely put the photos (some of them) around there. I have seen catalog and magazine photos of rooms where folks have done 'photo walls' and I don't think that's ME. I would prefer to have fewer photos and just change them out.

I am going to put the photos that need to be hung on a wall in the downstairs hallway (leads to the media room, a bedroom, bathroom and my all-purpose/laundry room) I think those on the wall will really make it cheery and they will be kind of different there. Also, in case I EVER forget whose LAUNDRY I am doing, I will only have to look at the wall. :glare::lol:

Truly, I just stop myself when I pick up anything in a store, and tell myself no -- I remind myself that I love not having wall cabinets in the kitchen on one whole side of the room (opens it up and lets in light) and putting up shelves like I see in the Ballard's catalog, will defeat when I am trying to achieve. It is absolutely a discipline that I have had to cultivate. HTH

#23 Halcyon

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 01:05 PM

OH - you ARE like me -- I can tell by THAT question! I have a few small framed photos in the master bedroom, some small ones in the kids rooms. One or two on a table in the entry hallway. I've decided that fewer photos make it more likely that guests will look at them - too many are overwhelming - my sister has TOO many in her house.

I have tons of photos that are framed for hanging (haven't gotten them unpacked yet since the repairs here were done) and probably hundreds more in frames that can go on tables - and none of them are out yet.

We are in the process of re-doing a very very large room on the lower level that will be a great room -- I will likely put the photos (some of them) around there. I have seen catalog and magazine photos of rooms where folks have done 'photo walls' and I don't think that's ME. I would prefer to have fewer photos and just change them out.

I am going to put the photos that need to be hung on a wall in the downstairs hallway (leads to the media room, a bedroom, bathroom and my all-purpose/laundry room) I think those on the wall will really make it cheery and they will be kind of different there. Also, in case I EVER forget whose LAUNDRY I am doing, I will only have to look at the wall. :glare::lol:

Truly, I just stop myself when I pick up anything in a store, and tell myself no -- I remind myself that I love not having wall cabinets in the kitchen on one whole side of the room (opens it up and lets in light) and putting up shelves like I see in the Ballard's catalog, will defeat when I am trying to achieve. It is absolutely a discipline that I have had to cultivate. HTH


Hehe! I meant "do you have photos of your home you can share?" :) But thanks for this answer too LOL

#24 gandpsmommy

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 01:10 PM

Hi,
It's just plain hard to keep a lovely house while having the full time job of home schooling! My dd do have chores, but often they are truly busy with their assignments and can't get to the cleaning chores any easier than I can. Here's what I discovered...if you concentrate your efforts on staying organized (no papers on countertops, coats hung in a closet, etc.) then the house doesn't seem to be lacking so badly in a good cleaning. I've had many drop in guests that are impressed with my "clean house" when I haven't actually cleaned it in weeks. One thing I did was to buy a storage bin that I call the dollar bucket. Whenever someone leaves something lying around the house that has a place it could go, I put it in the dollar bucket - they have to pay me $1 to get it back - sometimes it's just trash and they would throw it out anyway (which solves the decluttering issues). Everyone (including dh) learned very quickly to pick up after themselves! :lol: I do look forward to having the time to clean thoroughly someday.


I love the dollar bucket idea!

#25 MariannNOVA

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 01:15 PM

Hehe! I meant "do you have photos of your home you can share?" :) But thanks for this answer too LOL


:svengo:

I feel like an idiot! An idiot in a very clean house, but an idiot!:tongue_smilie:

I will get the cable to the camera and post some photos -- kitchen is a work in progress -- appliances just delivered yesterday, countertops not here yet, waiting on sink and just decided last night to remove cabinets (not many) we thought would stay and replace --:confused: -- sorry that's confusing.

I will take photos and send them -- I still feel like a fool!:001_huh:

#26 Halcyon

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 08:34 AM

Hehe! Don't! I appreciated all your comments about photos LOL!

But I can't wait to see your home--would love other's photos and comments as well. My house is SPARKLING and I want it to stay that way :)

#27 LibraryLover

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 09:29 AM

I love a clean and tidy home. Adore it. I noticed, however, a few years ago, that my need for certain order was in direct contrast to the needs of my family. My daily lamentations, noise of the vac etc., was stressing my kids, and even my dh asked why I was trying to keep perfect order in a home with animals and (then) 3 small children. At first I was a bit angry; how he could live in a mess? Yet I heard some wisdom. lol heh.

So, I have toned it down. Sometimes I am shocked by what I put up with now without (much) concern. lol I still can't have dirty dishes in the sink, and I go through vaccum cleaner bags faster than seems possible, but I have learned to see my children's 'collections', or art work left out on the dinning room table as a sign of busy, engaged people, which I tell myself is good. Right? :tongue_smilie: I now find comfort in open book cases, books on side tables and sofas , and see playmobil scenarios on my coffee table as a sign than people feel comfortable working and padding about their home.

I know I get if from mom, and she has no children at home, a very tidy dh, and one tiny hairless dog, but she is still constantly cleaning and sometimes says 'Oh, I don't know if I can do that today...my house is a *mess*'. Which it certainly is not. lol

It's hard for us tidy folk to find a good middle ground in a home full of children and activity.

#28 WTMindy

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 10:19 AM

We keep our house pretty tidy throughout the week, by just keeping up on it. Bue, for the deep cleaning/organizing, one thing that I did is to divide my house into 9 zones (I have 9 week school quarters-so this matches up) and each week one of those zones gets a deep cleaning/organization. I find that once something is deep cleaned and organized it doesn't take all that long to maintain it. So, each week just limit yourself to your zone, knowing that you will get to the other zones soon. It helps to make you feel that there is an end to the work.

I do want to go on record as saying that this is my plan....but I don't always do it. Often I'm just satisfied with tidy. :-)

#29 Halcyon

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 10:37 AM

We keep our house pretty tidy throughout the week, by just keeping up on it. Bue, for the deep cleaning/organizing, one thing that I did is to divide my house into 9 zones (I have 9 week school quarters-so this matches up) and each week one of those zones gets a deep cleaning/organization. I find that once something is deep cleaned and organized it doesn't take all that long to maintain it. So, each week just limit yourself to your zone, knowing that you will get to the other zones soon. It helps to make you feel that there is an end to the work.

I do want to go on record as saying that this is my plan....but I don't always do it. Often I'm just satisfied with tidy. :-)


This is a fantastic idea. I am going to do this!

#30 melissel

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 12:33 PM

So for a couple weeks, as soon as I had that thought I stopped what I was doing and jotted down whatever little chore it might be...Then I divvied up all of those simple jobs on the chore chart for morning chores.


That is genius!!! I have two little girls who hate to "tidy" or put away but who LOVE little jobs like that!

Whenever someone leaves something lying around the house that has a place it could go, I put it in the dollar bucket - they have to pay me $1 to get it back - sometimes it's just trash and they would throw it out anyway (which solves the decluttering issues).


Also pure genius!!! Those same little girls are very attached to their savings and would hate to have to pay me to get stuff back. Well, actually, one would have to pay me in cash, but I think I'd have to have the other one pay me in Littlest Pet Shop pets :lol:

We keep our house pretty tidy throughout the week, by just keeping up on it. Bue, for the deep cleaning/organizing, one thing that I did is to divide my house into 9 zones (I have 9 week school quarters-so this matches up) and each week one of those zones gets a deep cleaning/organization. I find that once something is deep cleaned and organized it doesn't take all that long to maintain it. So, each week just limit yourself to your zone, knowing that you will get to the other zones soon. It helps to make you feel that there is an end to the work.

I do want to go on record as saying that this is my plan....but I don't always do it. Often I'm just satisfied with tidy. :-)


And more genius. I even have space for this in my lesson planning worksheet!

I love these kinds of threads. I learn so much! :lurk5:

#31 Mejane

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 12:52 PM

Vacuuming, floor washing, etc. is done on weekends when everyone is available to help. Window washing, organizing, etc. is done when I have a chunk of time.

On a daily basis, I throw in a load of clothes in the morning, dry, fold and put away by noon. That way, laundry never builds up. I keep the swiffer by the laundry room door and run it over the whole first floor at least twice a day. It takes about two minutes, and keeps the pet hair and dust from migrating all over the house. All kitchen counters and appliances are quickly wiped down after meals. The bathrooms are swiped with disinfectant cloths (I like their convenience) everyday after I get dressed. Beds are made and bedrooms tidied in the morning. We all put our own dishes in the dishwasher after eating. And the real biggie for me - every night before bed, the family room and kitchen are tidied and everyone takes his or her things to his or her room. I refuse to come down in the morning to last night's mess; it puts me in a bad mood for the day.

I love the idea of the $1 bucket!

#32 Lara in Colo

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 12:54 PM

My last house had 26 window with horizontal blinds that needed yearly cleaning. (more actually) I watched my neighbor spend and entire day in the spring cleaning hers. I realized it took 20 min per window to spray the blinds in the shower, dry them off, and clean the window. I refused to spend an entire day doing this, so I figured 26 windows, 52 weeks in a yr, one window every other monday. Didn't even feel like work. So I TRY (doesn't always work) to plan all my chores this way.

Laundry 10 loads a week=1.5 per day (10 min)
Bathrooms -3 bathrooms= 1per day (10 min)
vacuming- 1 section of the house per day (5-10 min)
the microwave (once a week) monday
the kitchen floor (once a week ) tuesday
the entryway stairs (once a week) Friday
sheets- I change every 2 week, 5 beds= 1 every other day. Wed &Sat
(my goal is to change sheets one night of the week, randomly, the whole family helping, this way I can root through a teenagers' room without looking like a controlling mother, and they can't hide stuff, because you never know when this will happen)

As for tidying and children- I don't feed until the rooms house is picked up
That is 3 times a day.

Lara

#33 rafgaf4

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 01:11 PM

Three of my four boys have a chore list. We all work together everyday to get the chores done and the house clean. The boys will complete a chore or two each time they get done with a subject. By the time our school day is ending, the chores are usually done and we enjoy the rest of our day! I could not do it on my own and still have enough energy to get through my day.

#34 Barb F. in AZ

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 04:20 PM

Last year, I finally stopped paying for all outside activities for the kids and put the money toward a weekly housekeeper instead. I wish I would have done it years ago. I need my sanity more than the kids need gymnastics and art classes.

Barb

Okay, so I need advice. I am a neat/clean freak, organizaiton freak, but have found it very hard to keep the house the way I like while homeschooling. Now, I know the standard advice is "accept that your house will be messy", but let's pretend I can't do that :D

The boys are in spring gymnastics camp for 3 mornings this week, and I've spent basically the whole time cleaning and organizing, and let me tell you, my mood is 1000x better. So how can I maintain this?

Who out there successfully maintains a very clean and neat home while hs-ing? What are your best tips?



#35 *Amber*

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 04:46 PM

I like to use this as a guide to help me plan.

http://www.justmommi...zation-plan.php

#36 Halcyon

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 04:50 PM

I like to use this as a guide to help me plan.

http://www.justmommi...zation-plan.php



Thank you!! I've actually DONE all these things this week--woot!!!

Keep em coming ladies. There are wonderful ideas here.

#37 bookfiend

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 05:03 PM

We keep our house pretty tidy throughout the week, by just keeping up on it. Bue, for the deep cleaning/organizing, one thing that I did is to divide my house into 9 zones (I have 9 week school quarters-so this matches up) and each week one of those zones gets a deep cleaning/organization. I find that once something is deep cleaned and organized it doesn't take all that long to maintain it. So, each week just limit yourself to your zone, knowing that you will get to the other zones soon. It helps to make you feel that there is an end to the work.

I do want to go on record as saying that this is my plan....but I don't always do it. Often I'm just satisfied with tidy. :-)


OK, This is BRILLIANT! I have put it into the lesson plans for next year. Hope to get a grip on the house over the summer, reorganizing closets, assessing the filing system, sorting those toys! Like the OP, I can not think clearly when surrounded by clutter and dirt. I tend to schedule the big stuff for when we aren't schooling and then try to keep the structure in place when our days are busy.

#38 Doodle

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 05:36 PM

I am very neat. Very organized. I do not likes messes. I can't stand clutter. It actually makes me feel claustrophobic. Everything has it's place and that is where it belongs. I think this helps greatly in maintaining a clean house. Clutter free counters are easier to wipe. Clutter free floors are easier to vacuum. I do little things all through the day.

#39 Halcyon

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 05:38 PM

I am very neat. Very organized. I do not likes messes. I can't stand clutter. It actually makes me feel claustrophobic. Everything has it's place and that is where it belongs. I think this helps greatly in maintaining a clean house. Clutter free counters are easier to wipe. Clutter free floors are easier to vacuum. I do little things all through the day.


ITA. I am an anti-knick-knack person. I don't let them enter the front door. :D

#40 NancyNellen

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 05:45 PM

Well, I definitely cannot "accept that your house will be messy" - too much of my Type A Mama in me.

We have morning and evening chore time here. This time is invaluable for maintaining my home. I see that you only have one who can really be helpful at chore time, but he can certainly do a lot in 2 daily 20 minute bursts. Work along side your son with a list of what you would like to accomplish during this time (your son can sweep and you can follow with the mop, or he can tackle one job while you clean toilets, wash windows, etc.) My home is not spotless, but it is certainly neat and tidy.

We also have a stair basket where I toss thing that I find on the floor throughout the day. At the end of each day my 9 year old puts everything she finds in the basket away.

I set aside my Saturdays for the big work - deep cleaning, filing, bills, cleaning out closets, etc. I try to go into each Saturday with a specific list of what needs to be done.

HTH,

#41 Doodle

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 06:16 PM

Well, I definitely cannot "accept that your house will be messy" - too much of my Type A Mama in me.


:iagree: Exactly. This is not an option for me.

floridamama--Do you want pictures? I have some from my old house I could share.

#42 FloridaLisa

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 06:42 PM

Bue, for the deep cleaning/organizing, one thing that I did is to divide my house into 9 zones (I have 9 week school quarters-so this matches up) and each week one of those zones gets a deep cleaning/organization.


Curious Mindy: what are your 9 zones?

I've also delegated an area to four of my dc (once my oldest dual-enrolled, he got chore reprieve). One is in charge of pool cleaning, one all trash/recycling, one feeding pets and blowing off leaves and debris from pool, patio, driveway, and one helps hugely with laundry. The areas have stayed the same for a year, so they are know their jobs well.

We make beds, clean kitchen, tidy any living areas and the dc take care of their area before starting school. Then, it's a matter of just staying on top of the clutter that can accumulate from 9 people living, schooling, eating and playing in and around the house 24/7.

Lisa


#43 Hill Country Kat

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 07:43 PM

This conversation reminded me of this blog I read a few days ago while looking for clips to de-clutter. :)

#44 LindaOz

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Posted 09 April 2010 - 11:40 PM

I haven't read all the other posts, so I'm sorry if this is just more of the same :tongue_smilie:

We have a morning family routine of cleaning/jobs etc that gets done after breakfast and before schoolwork begins. Everyone is involved and has certain jobs to do. If that makes schoolwork time start a little later some days, then SO BE IT!!! I find that if we start without doing those chores first, they never will get done and the place falls apart. I hate it like that....so we do them first. Then we can work in peace. :001_smile:

#45 Halcyon

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Posted 10 April 2010 - 09:25 AM

:iagree: Exactly. This is not an option for me.

floridamama--Do you want pictures? I have some from my old house I could share.


Yes! We have a relatively small house - 1500 sf (bigger than our last apt, but still) and I'd love pics.

#46 Cornflower

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Posted 10 April 2010 - 10:18 AM

I recently purchased a list from motivated mom's. The cost is $8.00 and it's well worth it to help you stay on track. The list enables me to give my son different chores everyday. I print the list once a week and I put his name next to the chores I want him to do for each day. Sometimes he chooses his chores and sometimes I assign them. He prefers having a variety of different things to do rather then doing the same thing all the time. Here is a link where you can purchase your list and see a sample.

http://www.motivated...m/products.html

Scroll down the page and you can view samples. I'm sorry if this has already been mentioned. I did not read all the responses.

Have a good weekend,
Cornflower

#47 Doodle

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Posted 10 April 2010 - 11:35 AM

Yes! We have a relatively small house - 1500 sf (bigger than our last apt, but still) and I'd love pics.


These pictures are from the house we moved out of last year.

Edited by Doodle, 14 April 2010 - 06:39 AM.
removed pictures


#48 Halcyon

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Posted 14 April 2010 - 08:57 AM

I recently purchased a list from motivated mom's. The cost is $8.00 and it's well worth it to help you stay on track. The list enables me to give my son different chores everyday. I print the list once a week and I put his name next to the chores I want him to do for each day. Sometimes he chooses his chores and sometimes I assign them. He prefers having a variety of different things to do rather then doing the same thing all the time. Here is a link where you can purchase your list and see a sample.

http://www.motivated...m/products.html

Scroll down the page and you can view samples. I'm sorry if this has already been mentioned. I did not read all the responses.

Have a good weekend,
Cornflower


Thanks! i just started using this and I am liking it so far :)

#49 mrs.m

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Posted 14 April 2010 - 09:11 AM

We might be able to hire someone, but in the past, when we have, I always feel it's a bit of a waste as the maintenance part is what kills me ;) Plus, I don't know how much they'd be able to do about reorganizing, organizing closet, cleaning out garage and sorting older kids' clothes, kwim?
But DH has suggested some help to me many, many times, so maybe I should listen....


But if you aren't cleaning toilets, scrubbing floors, and vacumming then you may have more time for those things! You would be surprised how much it helps to have someone come in even every-other-week!

I miss my cleaning lady dearly. She had to stop working. I'm working on hiring someone else.

#50 Jinnah

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Posted 14 April 2010 - 10:53 AM

These pictures are from the house we moved out of last year.


I would like to see these as well, if possible.



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