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I am working really hard getting rid of clutter (hard to do with a packrat for a husband and three kids 4 and under). I am also making a clean house more of a priority. I want everything organized and neat when we start HSing in July. What is your best trick or habit that you use to motivate yourself or makes the most difference in keeping your house clean? What is something you are trying to improve on? Maybe we can give each other hints to make our lives easier!

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dump all toys with millions of tiny pieces.

 

just do it. I never go to bed without cleaning my kitchen. Mostly because I dread getting up to start today;s work if yesterday's work is still undone.

 

each kid's laundry gets washed separately. Can't tell you how awesome it is to hand a kid a basket of clothes and say here put it up. No more little piles to carry all over the house!

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Go Zen. I worked like I was possessed yesterday to get my house (downstairs) as Zen as it can be. I haven't had to clean anything downstairs today. I won't have to clean anything downstairs tomorrow.

 

Saturday when dh can help with the up and down stairs thing we are going to Zen the bedrooms.

 

ETA: There are photos on page 2, 3 and I think 4. The kitchen is the last photo.

 

Edited by Parrothead
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I am working really hard getting rid of clutter (hard to do with a packrat for a husband and three kids 4 and under). I am also making a clean house more of a priority. I want everything organized and neat when we start HSing in July. What is your best trick or habit that you use to motivate yourself or makes the most difference in keeping your house clean? What is something you are trying to improve on? Maybe we can give each other hints to make our lives easier!

 

Everybody has morning, lunch, and supper jobs. So the main areas of the house get straightened three times a day. Every Saturday morning we do a deeper cleaning with everyone working together.

 

Of course, none of this works if all your dc are still really little.

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Someone passed on a great "game' to us that has really helped keep the clutter down. we set up a money reward yourself system. We have four people old enough to participate, so four cups with two dollars worth of dimes in each cup. Whenever we pick up something that isn't ours, we get to take a dime from that person and put it in our cup. Every other week we pay the kids the amount in their cups and redistribute the dimes, to start over.

 

This has been a real HIT for them to make some extra spending money! For the first time ever, the towels are all hung up, the clothes put away, no shoes or coats laying around, the shower curtain is pulled over, no dishes sitting in the living room,none of their toys laying around. It is great! Even dh is putting away his coffee cup in the morning, so he doesn't have to pay them extra!

 

I would love for every Mom on here to read this!:001_smile:

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I like having a place for everything, along with a way to get everything back to its place.

 

For example, DS is a stuffed animal collector. I have a large plastic bin in his closet to keep them stored. When he brings them downstairs, he scatters them everywhere, but it doesn't bother me, because he has a big backpack that he can load them up in and truck upstairs with little trouble.

 

Also, paper clutter breeds not only more paper clutter, but other types of clutter as well. This has been my experience anyways! So, cutting down on paper clutter is good!

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I have clutter control baskets. I have a basket in the kitchen for catching mail, odd papers, keys, ect. I have a big laundry type basket in the kitchen and living room for catching toys, books, socks, ect. I toss whatever doesn't go in that room in the basket then when I get a chance I pick up a basket (or assign a kid) to walk around putting things back in their places. The bigger the basket the more clutter can get put in before you absolutely HAVE to empty it, and they are great for the 'panic clean up' when unexpected company shows up. I find it easier to relax in a room after I have tossed all the crap into the clutter basket to deal with later, and it looks a lot better too.

The nicer the basket looks the less you will mind having it, too, so get nicer ones. Worst case you can toss a quilt or a throw over the full clutter basket to hide the contents if you had to.

I also vacuum with a shop vac. If I tell the kids to put all their toys away and pick everything up they always miss stuff. Now that stuff becomes a sacrifice to the god of the shopvac. I just suck it up and it disappears forever. It also sucks up spills like when someone dumps a whole container of juice or tips over the dog dish.

The most important thing is to keep potential clutter items to a minimum. I only have so many outfits per child because they are less likely to end up on the floor that way, and only so many pairs of shoes per kid, and only so many toys. It is easy to get carried away buying stuff that quickly becomes a clutter problem.

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Make it easy to put stuff away. Have a place for everything, and make it a system that is usable. And insist that people use it.

 

For instance, we have a very small closet and lots of shoes/boots. Sure, it would be nice to have them all lined up all the time, but realistically, that's just not going to happen. So I have a bin in there for each of us, and we can just toss our shoes/boots in the appropriate bin. Even the 2yo knows where his bin is and can put his own things in it. I have no problem with stopping a child in the middle of playing, to get shoes/boots that were left elsewhere (the exception is for very wet/muddy boots; they can sit by the back door until dry). I really work on teaching the children to handle things just once -- don't set something down, but put it away.

 

We're also working on small steps toward keeping the house clean. A couple of things before breakfast, a quick mid-morning task, tidy bedrooms before lunch, and clean up toys before dinner/just after dinner. 5 or 10 minutes at a time goes a long way!

 

Reducing clutter helps, but I'm a packrat with a packrat family, so that's hard to do. :) It's also harder in the winter when we're in the house more; the house stays much tidier when everyone's outside more!

 

But really, the biggest thing I've found is that no tricks or systems will really work by themselves. The biggest thing I have to do is Just. Do. It. Even when I don't feel like it. :)

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Of course, none of this works if all your dc are still really little.

 

Y'know, this is really true. My big kids are almost 6 and almost 9, and they're really just at the point where they can clean up a mess without a lot of my help. Even still, if it's a really big mess, I have to help and/or break it down into little steps for them (pick up all the play food; now, pick up all the books; etc.). I look at a really messy room, and *I* am overwhelmed and have trouble getting started.

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Flylady is good. I find the emails a bit over the top, but the basic ideas are useful. The best one for me is the 'house blessing', where you clean the whole house in one go, but without obsessing about the corners or moving difficult furniture. I can do the whole house in around two hours and it looks good for the week. Then I can work on the decluttering slowly, without feeling overwhelmed. I like her fifteen minute declutter - it's not too dispiriting if there's a time limit to it.

 

The other Flylady technique I like is wiping over the bathrooms in the morning. I use a household wipe and go over the basins, toilets and splash zone around toilets, then quickly brush the toilet and it's clean for the day - it only takes a couple of minutes per bathroom. If I do it every day, cleaning the bathrooms once a week is very quick: I only have to clean the bath/shower and the floor.

 

Laura

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Sorry, we don't room in our budget for that and I'm sure a lot of other folks don't either or gee, we wouldn't be posting about trying to keep a house clean ourselves. Not every one can solve a problem by throwing money at it.

 

I didn't take Nayfiesmama's post like that at all! I thought it was a good-natured post with a little smilie afterward.

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Sorry, we don't room in our budget for that and I'm sure a lot of other folks don't either or gee, we wouldn't be posting about trying to keep a house clean ourselves. Not every one can solve a problem by throwing money at it.

 

I'm sure she was joking. Truly, it seems to be the only way it's going to happen around here! We've been sick this week, and I've been working, and this house makes me want to crawl into a cave somewhere *sigh*

 

I'm :lurk5: for hints and tips. I LOVE the dimes idea! My problem is that DD5 just doesn't really care so much about money, so she'd be happy to let everyone else have her dimes to clean up her mess. Also, what happens when you run out of dimes but there are still more things to clean up?

 

ETA: I think I asked this question a long time ago. If I can come up with the thread, I'll link it. I'd like to revisit it, and maybe you can glean some additional info from it!

Edited by melissel
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Someone passed on a great "game' to us that has really helped keep the clutter down. we set up a money reward yourself system. We have four people old enough to participate, so four cups with two dollars worth of dimes in each cup. Whenever we pick up something that isn't ours, we get to take a dime from that person and put it in our cup. Every other week we pay the kids the amount in their cups and redistribute the dimes, to start over.

 

This has been a real HIT for them to make some extra spending money! For the first time ever, the towels are all hung up, the clothes put away, no shoes or coats laying around, the shower curtain is pulled over, no dishes sitting in the living room,none of their toys laying around. It is great! Even dh is putting away his coffee cup in the morning, so he doesn't have to pay them extra!

 

I would love for every Mom on here to read this!:001_smile:

 

What a great idea!!! Thank you for sharing that.

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I'm sure she was joking. Truly, it seems to be the only way it's going to happen around here! We've been sick this week, and I've been working, and this house makes me want to crawl into a cave somewhere *sigh*

 

I'm :lurk5: for hints and tips. I LOVE the dimes idea! My problem is that DD5 just doesn't really care so much about money, so she'd be happy to let everyone else have her dimes to clean up her mess. Also, what happens when you run out of dimes but there are still more things to clean up?

 

why not try a jar of M and M's (or jellybeans) ? (I use M and M's for everything...learning multipication tables, potty rewards..etc.)

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I'm sure she was joking. Truly, it seems to be the only way it's going to happen around here! We've been sick this week, and I've been working, and this house makes me want to crawl into a cave somewhere *sigh*

 

I'm :lurk5: for hints and tips. I LOVE the dimes idea! My problem is that DD5 just doesn't really care so much about money, so she'd be happy to let everyone else have her dimes to clean up her mess. Also, what happens when you run out of dimes but there are still more things to clean up?

 

ETA: I think I asked this question a long time ago. If I can come up with the thread, I'll link it. I'd like to revisit it, and maybe you can glean some additional info from it!

 

Well, while you might be getting their dimes, they might also get some of yours. So around here noone has ever run out. Your could pay up and redistribute every week, if someone ran out in one week.

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Every day we have 3-4 light pick up times, usually right before meals and bedtime. All the nitty gritty deep cleaning gets done on "Cinderella Saturday". I have girls who like to pretend they are Cinderella slaving away. We don't schedule anything else for Saturday mornings. It's amazing how much work can get done quickly when everyone pitches in.

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Go Zen. I worked like I was possessed yesterday to get my house (downstairs) as Zen as it can be. I haven't had to clean anything downstairs today. I won't have to clean anything downstairs tomorrow.

 

Saturday when dh can help with the up and down stairs thing we are going to Zen the bedrooms.

 

ETA: There are photos on page 2, 3 and I think 4. The kitchen is the last photo.

 

 

HEY! That is *our* dog on your couch... looks identical to ours! BTW, love your house!

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My best method is to clean up as I move through my day.

 

The first thing I do in the morning is get out of bed. ;) So I make the bed before I leave that space. I put away any books or magazines I was reading the night before, and collect last night's water glass or tea cup to take to the kitchen.

 

Next I use the bathroom. I wipe down the toilet and change the roll if necessary before I leave the room. After I brush my teeth and wash my face I wipe down the sink, counter top and faucet, run a cloth over the mirror and change the hand towel if necessary.

 

On to the kitchen to get breakfast started. Because we clean as we go, there isn't a mess from last night's dinner or dessert.

After breakfast the dishes go directly into the dishwasher and the counters are wiped down. If the dishwasher is full and clean, I put away the dishes while Hunter collects his school books for the day.

 

Laundry is done between school subjects. We read a lesson together, I answer any of his questions and while he does the independent work, I put in a new load of laundry, move one to the dryer or fold whatever just came out of it.

 

And so on...

 

Clean before you leave that space. Do the quick chores every time and it doesn't get overwhelming.

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I am RIGHT where you are - dh pack rat & 4 ages 4 & under.

 

1. Clean the kitchen everyday.

2. Teach the kids to clean up after themselves (toys & dirty clothes) and their daddy (dirty clothes, etc.).

3. This is my week as far as chores go:

Monday - wash clothes

Tuesday - clean bathrooms

Wed - wash clothes

Thurs - vacuum, sweep, & mop (4 & 3yo help by moving chairs & picking up so I just need to focus on the act of vacuuming, sweeping & moping)

Friday - dust (4yo helps get low places)

Saturday - wash clothes

 

I have a newborn - hence the constant washing. Before the newborn, I would wash Mon & Thurs., take Tuesday off, and clean bathrooms Wed (dh is home Wed. mornings so I would clean bathrooms then - I LOATHE doing that).

 

Other than the kitchen, there is only 1 thing to do/day so it feels easier, which means I am more apt to do it :)

 

hth!

 

Clutter: rotate toys (I have a closet upstairs just for extra toys)

have a certain # in each room so they have "new" toys to play w/every quarter (or so) and the room never gets too cluttered (I have about 10 toys & 10 books/room, give or take).

 

dh packrat: I clean up after him (he doesn't expect me to but it wouldn't get done if I didn't do it - it doesn't bother him b/c he's oblivious to it - MIL's house is GROSS!)

I leave his office a mess and only clean up in there periodically (not a priority)

I discourage him from buying more stuff (which is not too incredibly hard since we have NO $$)

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1)Declutter, be brutal, absolutely brutal- have a place for the things you do keep

2)Routines

3) Do lots of small cleanings- it takes less than a minute to clean the mirror, toilet and sink in the bathroom, literally, I do it daily or every other day. I do the laundry every other day- just 1 load per day(I have a lrg capacity washer), then I can do a load in a snap, kids are to pick up their room 2 times a day so it never gets too bad that they cannot do it themselves. I try to go to bed w/ it clean, if not I start the day behind.

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Three words: Do it now.

 

Make my bed as soon as I get up instead of coming back to it. Get dressed as soon as I get up. Clean the kitchen as soon as we finish eating. Clean out the car every time we get home. Fold the laundry as soon as it comes out of the dryer. Pick up the flotsam and jetsam on the floor the first time I see it. Nag...er, remind dc and dh to do the same. Remind them again...and again.

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ABC - always be cleaning. :D Like Crissy, I clean continuously as I go from room to room. Keep on top of it. Don't let a day go by without doing a load of laundry or cleaning. Pick up all day so it doesn't accumulate. It sounds difficult, but I find it much easier than doing big, deep cleanings or huge pick-ups once a day.

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Hmmm. Hire a housecleaner :)

 

This used yo be my thought too, but I have tried 3 housekeepers. Housekeeper #1 did a horrible job as did #2. Housekeeper #3 couldn't clean without thinking she was on a shopping spree when she got to my bathroom and bedroom. :confused:

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OK - now a serious reply. On my to-do list I have categories.

 

Kitchen - I do kitchen clean-up every morning and every night. This includes loading and unloading and running the dishwasher, cleaning the counters and stove and putting things away. I should also sweep but I don't always remember.

 

Bathrooms - 5 min. in the bathrooms every day.

 

Vacuuming - 10 min. vacuuming every day

 

Business/Mail - It's on my list every day but I only work on it every 3 days. This includes managing our library books.

 

Special Projects - one or two a week.

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I am RIGHT where you are - dh pack rat & 4 ages 4 & under.

 

1. Clean the kitchen everyday.

2. Teach the kids to clean up after themselves (toys & dirty clothes) and their daddy (dirty clothes, etc.).

3. This is my week as far as chores go:

Monday - wash clothes

Tuesday - clean bathrooms

Wed - wash clothes

Thurs - vacuum, sweep, & mop (4 & 3yo help by moving chairs & picking up so I just need to focus on the act of vacuuming, sweeping & moping)

Friday - dust (4yo helps get low places)

Saturday - wash clothes

 

I have a newborn - hence the constant washing. Before the newborn, I would wash Mon & Thurs., take Tuesday off, and clean bathrooms Wed (dh is home Wed. mornings so I would clean bathrooms then - I LOATHE doing that).

 

Other than the kitchen, there is only 1 thing to do/day so it feels easier, which means I am more apt to do it :)

 

hth!

 

Clutter: rotate toys (I have a closet upstairs just for extra toys)

have a certain # in each room so they have "new" toys to play w/every quarter (or so) and the room never gets too cluttered (I have about 10 toys & 10 books/room, give or take).

 

dh packrat: I clean up after him (he doesn't expect me to but it wouldn't get done if I didn't do it - it doesn't bother him b/c he's oblivious to it - MIL's house is GROSS!)

I leave his office a mess and only clean up in there periodically (not a priority)

I discourage him from buying more stuff (which is not too incredibly hard since we have NO $$)

 

 

Wow...I could have written this! DH is the same way here. His parents house is nasty and he is used to living in filth so it doesn't bother him if dishes sit in the sink for a week...or more! His mom is a hoarder (not quite as bad as the people on the TV shows, but she might get there someday). DH was beginning to show signs of that. We just moved and got rid of two dumpsters full of stuff and an entire moving van went to Salvation Army. It was such a relief to get rid of all of that junk and I don't want it to come back. Our old basement (our house is still on the market) is still full of my MIL's junk. I told her that when we sell the house, she has until closing to get it out or I am hiring a company to take it all to the dump. So far, she has yet to set foot in there. Anyway, enough complaining about that....

 

 

I really like your schedule. I might try that. It seems so much less overwhelming that way.

 

 

PP...I love your idea about the dimes in the cups! I also read about putting jobs on ping pong balls and having kids take one out and complete it and get a new one. Whoever has the most balls after 30 min or whatever time frame, wins a prize. That will work great when the kids are a little older. I am going to use the dimes cups! I think I will use M&M's instead since my kids have no concept of money (although we could take them to the dollar store and let them spend it...on more clutter...haha).:lol:

 

 

 

My best new habit is cleaning the kitchen every night (even our desk in the kitchen that is my new clutter catcher). It is spotless every morning when I wake up and that is so refreshing. I am trying to get into the habit of doing that with the living room and the playroom as well! That is definitely a work in progress!

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routines are very important. have regular periods of 5 min throughout the day where everyone helps quickly pick up a designated area of the house. Flylady, although annoying to some, helped me understand and establish good routines that worked with my schedule.

 

One other tip I have is never do more laundry than you can fold and put away in a day. I make a point of doing 2 loads of laundry a day.

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I am working really hard getting rid of clutter (hard to do with a packrat for a husband and three kids 4 and under). I am also making a clean house more of a priority. I want everything organized and neat when we start HSing in July. What is your best trick or habit that you use to motivate yourself or makes the most difference in keeping your house clean? What is something you are trying to improve on? Maybe we can give each other hints to make our lives easier!

 

I use a broom to sweep it all into the middle of the room and then we have a pick up party. Whatever isn't picked up is pitched. The pile isn't as large these days. :D

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Someone passed on a great "game' to us that has really helped keep the clutter down. we set up a money reward yourself system. We have four people old enough to participate, so four cups with two dollars worth of dimes in each cup. Whenever we pick up something that isn't ours, we get to take a dime from that person and put it in our cup. Every other week we pay the kids the amount in their cups and redistribute the dimes, to start over.

 

This has been a real HIT for them to make some extra spending money! For the first time ever, the towels are all hung up, the clothes put away, no shoes or coats laying around, the shower curtain is pulled over, no dishes sitting in the living room,none of their toys laying around. It is great! Even dh is putting away his coffee cup in the morning, so he doesn't have to pay them extra!

 

I would love for every Mom on here to read this!:001_smile:

 

That is an excellent idea and I am stealing it...haha

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Sorry, we don't room in our budget for that and I'm sure a lot of other folks don't either or gee, we wouldn't be posting about trying to keep a house clean ourselves. Not every one can solve a problem by throwing money at it.

 

Actually I have a housekeeper who does the upstairs one week and the downstairs the next week. The kids and I are motivated to keep up with things the rest of the time because none of it ever gets completely out of control. Having a occasional help doesn't mean you stop keeping it clean yourself! Personally, my house gets out of control when I feel overwhelmed. We cut other places in the budget to be able to afford her. People differ in what they choose to spend money on, and this was important enough to my sanity to cut some things out of our budget that others might see as non-negotiables. Shrug.

 

Barb

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That is an excellent idea and I am stealing it...haha

 

 

Oh, we do have a rule that we wait 5 minutes after we see something to make sure the person wasn't getting to it. Say someone comes in and hurries to the bathroom and leaves shoes out. Wait 5 minutes, if the shoes are still there,we tell the person." I am putting away your shoes and taking a dime." That way everyone is always being reminded to keep up with it.

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Are we talking about CLEAN, as in no dirt, or PICKED UP, as in nothing on the floor and about?

 

My house is almost always clean... Floor scrubbed about every week, vaccumed daily, counters wiped daily, laundry done often, beds made, etc.

 

It is almost NEVER picked up. We cook three meals per day. We don't use disposable dishes. I homeschool. I have five children ages 7 and under. There simply ARE going to be dishes about, toys about, art projects about, books on the sofa, floor, steps, by the beds. :D

 

If you stop by without calling, I promise I will be INSANELY uncomfortable by not having all of this picked up. But the house is CLEAN. You just need to look under all that. :P

 

So you want "picked up" tips or truly "clean" tips? :D

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Teamwork. My philosophy is "If you can help mess it up, you can help clean it up." Barring physical incapability, there are no exceptions.

 

Even when my ds was a tiny toddler, I would get him to put his toys away. I helped, of course, but over time, it became his habit. i don't believe that keeping the house neat and clean is solely my job. My dh can do dishes, vacuum, dust, do laundry -- and more. He isn't incapacitated and he isn't stupid. I don't buy the excuse of "I work hard all day" because so do I! Even on days when I'm not working at my job, I'm still working at homeschooling, working at keeping the farm business on track, etc. I refuse to be the family maid.

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Teamwork. My philosophy is "If you can help mess it up, you can help clean it up." Barring physical incapability, there are no exceptions.

 

Even when my ds was a tiny toddler, I would get him to put his toys away. I helped, of course, but over time, it became his habit. i don't believe that keeping the house neat and clean is solely my job. My dh can do dishes, vacuum, dust, do laundry -- and more. He isn't incapacitated and he isn't stupid. I don't buy the excuse of "I work hard all day" because so do I! Even on days when I'm not working at my job, I'm still working at homeschooling, working at keeping the farm business on track, etc. I refuse to be the family maid.

 

I totally agree with all of this. I usually don't have to ask for his help, but when I do need it I am not shy about asking. Actually he generally pitches in when I am overwhelmed before I even have to ask.

 

But the phrase, many hands make light work is so true. I've been instituting 30 minute clean up times where everyone works hard for 30 minutes. It is stunning how much gets done in just 30 minutes!!!

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Someone passed on a great "game' to us that has really helped keep the clutter down. we set up a money reward yourself system. We have four people old enough to participate, so four cups with two dollars worth of dimes in each cup. Whenever we pick up something that isn't ours, we get to take a dime from that person and put it in our cup. Every other week we pay the kids the amount in their cups and redistribute the dimes, to start over.

 

This has been a real HIT for them to make some extra spending money! For the first time ever, the towels are all hung up, the clothes put away, no shoes or coats laying around, the shower curtain is pulled over, no dishes sitting in the living room,none of their toys laying around. It is great! Even dh is putting away his coffee cup in the morning, so he doesn't have to pay them extra!

 

I would love for every Mom on here to read this!:001_smile:

 

I LOVE this. Genius. :thumbup:

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Halve it all.

Run through the house and pick up everything loose and put them on the bed of the guilty party, or if your house is too big, in a basket in a specific location: one basket per person.

Clean up the kitchen every night.

A quick weekly clean in the bathroom is easier than a huge toothbrush scrub now and then (and is so much more pleasant to bathe in).

I use Speed Clean: once around a room, and all the supplies right there or in my belt.

Once every 6 months threaten to leave your husband if he doesn't do his share. (For me, this is a threat for him to be out on his ear when I retire.:001_smile:)

Periodically announce NO fun, NO food, NO outings until everyone's room is clean.

Quality door mats and keeping the entrances swept (I live in pine needle country).

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Schedule two times a day when everyone speed cleans the house. We do it before lunch and before dh comes home. Amazing what can happen when 3 people and a preschooler ;) clean for 10 minutes. I can stay focused on teaching the rest of the time and then use these times to power clean. I'm not a multi-tasker.

 

Get the kids involved. My 3 year old can make his bed, put away the plastic dishes and the silverware. He loves to clean baseboards and is a mean shot with the spray bottle of vinegar and water. The bigger boys clean the bathrooms every day. Do they do a fantastic job? Nope. Are they improving each time? Yeeesss, slowly. Get cheap kid sized equipment. We got a cheap dustpan and short handled broom that fit together. My kids clean the kitchen floor after every meal and the stairs once a day with it.

 

Time your horrible tasks. I used to dread unloading the dishwasher. Then I timed myself. It takes me about 3 minutes to unload the entire thing. Really? That's what I was dreading? Same thing with folding laundry - 5 minutes. Vacuuming - 15 min. to do the whole main level. You get the point. I kept putting off what I thought would take soooo long. In reality, the tasks didn't take all that long. Now that I know that, I just quickly bust 'em out.

 

Get rid of stuff. Pare it down. Only 1 appliance on counters. Only 1 week worth of clothes in dresser per kid. Limited number of toys. As I think flylady says - you can't organize clutter.

 

Save this for really bad days - reward yourself. Sometimes, I pour a glass of wine and force myself to do a half hour of major cleaning. When I'm done doing the yuckiest junk that I hate to do, I get to shower up and then kick back with a well deserved cocktail. Motivates me. :)

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Someone passed on a great "game' to us that has really helped keep the clutter down. we set up a money reward yourself system. We have four people old enough to participate, so four cups with two dollars worth of dimes in each cup. Whenever we pick up something that isn't ours, we get to take a dime from that person and put it in our cup. Every other week we pay the kids the amount in their cups and redistribute the dimes, to start over.

 

This has been a real HIT for them to make some extra spending money! For the first time ever, the towels are all hung up, the clothes put away, no shoes or coats laying around, the shower curtain is pulled over, no dishes sitting in the living room,none of their toys laying around. It is great! Even dh is putting away his coffee cup in the morning, so he doesn't have to pay them extra!

 

I would love for every Mom on here to read this!:001_smile:

 

I have to say I LOVE this idea...that would be interesting...do you ever have any problems with this system...or glitches that had to be worked out while everyone was getting used to this system?

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I haven't read all the replies, but I do what I call a "Clean Sweep" every night before I go to bed. If there are toys out of place, I put them back. If there's a cup left on the coffee table, I put it in the dishwasher. If someone left dirty clothes on the ground, I put them in the hamper. If there's dog toys around the living room, I put them into the dog's bin. I put every single thing back into it's place. Sometimes I will even quickly wipe down the mirror and counter in the bathrooms or kitchen. That way, when I wake up in the morning, everything is clean.

 

I love starting each day with a clean slate like that.

 

I have to do it EVERY night or it will begin to build up and I'm not able to to the Clean Sweep at night....it would take much longer than the 15 minutes I allow for the Clean Sweep. The key is EVERY night.

 

Also, every night before the kids go to bed, I have them return all toys to the playroom. That way, there's no toys cluttering the house. If they want to leave toys set up to play with IN the playroom, I'm fine with that. But not in my living room or the kitchen table, or the sunroom. Playroom only.

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I do one load of laundry everyday. I pop it into the washer right away in the morning, put it in the dryer during lunch, and fold and put it away before dinner. I wash towels on Monday and sheets on Friday.

 

I clean my kitchen every evening, not Martha Stewart clean, but pretty clean: load dirty dishes in the dishwasher and turn it on, wash pots and pans and put away, scrub counters and cooktop, take out the trash, and sweep the floor.

 

I vacuum every day, not the whole house just sections (a few rooms at a time).

 

I scrub something everyday. One day it's the bathroom, the next it's the mudroom........ I concentrate on one area everyday.

 

 

OK - now a serious reply. On my to-do list I have categories.

 

Kitchen - I do kitchen clean-up every morning and every night. This includes loading and unloading and running the dishwasher, cleaning the counters and stove and putting things away. I should also sweep but I don't always remember.

 

Bathrooms - 5 min. in the bathrooms every day.

 

Vacuuming - 10 min. vacuuming every day

 

Business/Mail - It's on my list every day but I only work on it every 3 days. This includes managing our library books.

 

Special Projects - one or two a week.

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