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If you have mastered a simple cleaning routine please share

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Daily chores: laundry, dishes, animals (30-45 min twice a day, average 2 loads laundry, 2 loads dishes)

Monday: tidy, sweep/mop one room. Cooking day

Tuesday: sweep/mop kitchen, dining room, laundry room. leftovers, baked potatoes--no major cooking on a major cleaning day.

Wednesday: sweep/mop living room, hallway. Pizza night.

Thursday: general sweep the house, pick up. Cooking day.

Friday: sweep/mop master bedroom, clean master bathroom. Boys sweep/mop their room and clean their bathroom. Wash linens. No cooking.

Saturday: boys work outside with DH on yard things, my day to plan school and meals for the week after I get home from work. No cooking.

Sunday: Rest. I'll usually cook a little bit in the evenings.

 

On average I spend 1.5 hours on housekeeping per day, and the chores add up to one additional hour. My goal is 2 hrs per day max. 

Cooking varies depending on prep and the meal. I like cooking, but I don't want it to take me more than about 1 hr a day of labor. I won't cook on days with a heavy cleaning load.

Any major projects (like closet cleaning, desk organization, garage cleaning, and the like) get scheduled for times when we are taking a break from school.

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I sweep (and mop once a month) a different room downstairs each weekday.  Laundry gets done when the basket is full (about twice a week - my big kids do their own laundry as needed).  I start it in the morning so it gets all the way through putting away by evening.  I have a list of things that are repeated every day such as spot cleaning the guinea pig cage (it gets thoroughly cleaned on Fridays), using a Clorox wipe on my toilets, and putting away the dishes.  All the things I need to do are in an app (Wunderlist) on my iPhone so I don't forget to do things.  I check my inventory of food on Thursdays (I have an app - mealboard - for that as well) and then plan menus.  I go grocery shopping Friday mornings when they open at 6.  Sheets get washed once a month.  Towels once a week.  I pick up as needed to keep everything straight.  Deep cleaning is really as the mood strikes me.

 

It really took figuring out what really needed to get done each day and making a list and following it.  I use some FlyLady ideas and some Side-Tracked Home Executives ideas (which is actually where FlyLady got her ideas) and some my own ideas.  I had to tailor everything to me or it never would've worked or lasted.  I've been using my current system about 9 months, but before that I did the same thing on paper for a couple years.

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I had to tailor everything to me or it never would've worked or lasted.  I've been using my current system about 9 months, but before that I did the same thing on paper for a couple years.

 

I agree. If it doesn't fit your household and your schedule, it doesn't matter how good the routine looks on paper. It won't fly for long.

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I have NOT mastered a cleaning routine.  Part of the problem is every time I get something down....something changes.  A kid starts potty training or another one starts therapy or DH stops working OT or whatever. 

 

But for me, the motivated moms app is the one list/routine that is the most likely to get done.  I haven't been doing it as much since starting home schooling, but I am getting back to it. 

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I sweep (and mop once a month) a different room downstairs each weekday.  Laundry gets done when the basket is full (about twice a week - my big kids do their own laundry as needed).  I start it in the morning so it gets all the way through putting away by evening.  I have a list of things that are repeated every day such as spot cleaning the guinea pig cage (it gets thoroughly cleaned on Fridays), using a Clorox wipe on my toilets, and putting away the dishes.  All the things I need to do are in an app (Wunderlist) on my iPhone so I don't forget to do things.  I check my inventory of food on Thursdays (I have an app - mealboard - for that as well) and then plan menus.  I go grocery shopping Friday mornings when they open at 6.  Sheets get washed once a month.  Towels once a week.  I pick up as needed to keep everything straight.  Deep cleaning is really as the mood strikes me.

 

It really took figuring out what really needed to get done each day and making a list and following it.  I use some FlyLady ideas and some Side-Tracked Home Executives ideas (which is actually where FlyLady got her ideas) and some my own ideas.  I had to tailor everything to me or it never would've worked or lasted.  I've been using my current system about 9 months, but before that I did the same thing on paper for a couple years.

 

 

I pretty much do Flylady routines as well.   We have animals inside so I sweep downstairs daily, and we vacuum the entire house usually 2x week.  It's usually done as part of the night time pick-up/clean-up.   Laundry is normally done a load a day and sheets weekly.  Our laundry is on the main floor so it's easy to do amongst other things.  I don't allow myself to start another load of  laundry until the first is completely finished and put away.   I hate being slow about  it but lack the self-discipline to do it any other way.   On the flip side I enjoy doing laundry so I do it all myself :-)   The fridge and pantry  are cleaned and straightened on Tuesdays because the garbage guy comes the next day.   Animal cages are also cleaned on Tuesday evenings.   Meal planning and calendars are usually discussed on Thursday after dinner.  Grocery shopping and errands are on Friday.  Every couple of weeks dh and I have a leisurely Saturday breakfast while we do all things finance.  The kitchen and meal prep ( soaking grains or getting things from the freezer, making lunches, etc )  for the next day is done immediately after dinner.  We've always tried to limit night time activities so it's worked well for us.   I think the key is finding where in your day you want/can fit things and begin to do them consistently.   Best wishes as you find what works best for you. 

 

ETA:  I want to point out that I only have one teen at home.   When we had four littles at home, our level of clutter and cleanliness was a different story.   Our house wasn't dirty, but it also looked lived in because we lived and schooled and worked in our home.  Nowadays I have more time, more energy, and less stuff.  

Edited by Artichoke
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I mostly clean as things need it. So the kitchen is cleaned after each meal. Stuff is picked up and put away during the day. I sweep the main floor and stairs at night and mop as needed.  Trash goes out on trash days. We do laundry three days a week, one of those being the sheets and towels. Laundry is folded and put away the same day it's done or sometimes for the kids the next day if dh and I are folding at night. Once a week I do the weekly cleaning: bathrooms, dusting and vacuuming. That takes me about 1-2 hours depending on how thorough I am and if I have the kids help or not.  I do a quick vacuuming of the main areas one other time during the week. 

 

Things like windows, more thorough cleaning of floors, the fridge, etc are done when I notice that they need it. Probably about once a season we will have a Saturday where I recruit everyone to do more deep cleaning. 

 

I don't spend a lot of time cleaning regularly. I feel like our house is clean enough and it is always at the point where I am ok having people over. Part of that may be that I don't really worry about it if it's not perfect when people come over. I also don't worry a lot about things like dust bunnies under the beds or dust on the tops of picture frames. I feel like it appears cleaner than it is because I really hate clutter and so I keep up with all the little stuff. 

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Morning:

- Leave my bathroom tidy, surfaces clear and wiped with a facecloth (after using it for my face), and with the garbage and hamper at a usable level of emptiness.

- Once every week or two I also use a disposable toilet scrubber, some Lysol wipes, a mirror wipe, and some tub/shower spray with a long-handled sponge-wand-mini-mop-thingy. (I also keep my toilet clean with a 'puck' in the tank.)

- Leave my bed made, and my night table and other surfaces cleared or squared-away to my own satisfaction.

- Many days I (or a child) start a load of laundry in the morning.

- Have one child empty the dishwasher and/or refill the dishwasher as needed. Anything still damp from the dishwasher is transferred to a tray to finish drying.

- Leave the table clear, wiped, and ready for the next meal.

- Leave the counters clear and wiped as needed.

- Leave the floors clear and ready for the roomba to run (on the main floor on many days, other days it travels to other rooms), and empty the roomba as needed.

- Swap the laundry to the dryer if I need to, bring clean laundry baskets to my bedroom. Sort the laundry every two or three (clean) loads; sending sorted/folded baskets to each person's room to be put away within a day or two.

 

Daytime I do one or more of these:

- Load and run the dishwasher as needed.

- Spray and mop hard floors once or twice a week with one of those cloth pad-mops.

- Move the roomba around the house aiming for full coverage every two weeks.

- Empty the automatic cat litter box (and do other cat chores) once a week.

- Do hand washed dishes once or twice a week (I mostly use the dishwasher).

- Clean various bathrooms with disposable products (once every week or two, in addition to toilet pucks).

- Tidy, clean, and dust various rooms, once in a while.

- Occadionally "refresh" (sort and clean) the fridge or pantry.

 

Evening:

- Leave the table clear, wiped, and ready for the next meal.

- Usually fill and run the dishwasher.

- Leave the counters clear and wiped. I also wipe the cupboards and drawer handles, the microwave, and anything else that draws my attention.

- Leave the sinks empty, or anything soaking I'd given fresh water.

- Make sure the trash and recycling are empty enough to handle another day.

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We have a "room/chore of the day" and "laundry of the day" Monday-Friday, and also daily tasks and chores.  

Me and the kids each take care of our own rooms and laundry, and pitch in on the shared rooms.

My older two each have a dish day and a vacuuming day (younger will be included at age 7 or 8).

I have a couple of charts for reference so I can just point at the wall when one of the older two forget what's next.

Also, it's set up so that each kid can move through their day mostly independent of each other and me. 

 

The details really have to be tailored to your house, family, and schedule, though.  Prioritize the high-traffic areas and work out from there.

 

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Thank you for asking this question! I have been trying fly lady a second time around and I can't get past the email clutter yet again. I'm just deleting without reading most of them, so I've added more busy work without actually getting more done! Lol! I need something different. I'm going to look more at the Motivated Moms printable. I see it's a simple daily list. This is appealing. I'm just hoping it's not random and that the house will start coming together by following this.

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We all work except for the old people who live here. I got a handle on cleaning by just giving up the fight. If it looks dirty at a time when I am looking for something to do, I will wipe that one spot. I do require everyone to clean up their own dishes at the time they eat, and pick up after themselves.

 

If someone were to come to my house right this second, he would say, "neat, nice home, wonder why the Christmas tree is still up, eeewww, look at the dog hair everywhere."

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I just hired someone to clean and organize.  She is coming today to look over everything and determine where to start.

 

It will be pricey, but once she has finished helping me purge and organize, she swears things will be easier.

 

 

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I get the kids to do it. :-) In my defense, I also work so between my job, homeschooling and driving kids to activities, my life is FULL. I've tried to teach the kids that work is a part of life and if they want more privileges, than they must take on more responsibilities. We have a kitchen cleaning schedule on the frig so that gets done 3 times a day. The kids also sweep, dust, vacuum, do their own laundry and clean their own bathroom. They can get paid for other jobs such as cleaning baseboards, mopping, cleaning out the frig, etc. Since they have to pay for their social activities and camps, they are always looking for paid work. My kids are 18, 14, and 12 so they are certainly old enough to get the work done.

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I use the zones in the Flylady routine. I do not subscribe to her emails because that drove me batty. You don't need to be a part of her emails to get benefits out of her plan. I also have a daily checklist that includes stuff not in the current zone, such as regular bathroom checks, sweeping, deck and porch.

 

My zones:

1. Foyer, Dining Room

2. Kitchen

3. Hall bathroom (kids rooms used to be here but my kids are all grown now and I don't do anything in their rooms anymore)

4. Master bedroom and bathroom

5. Living room

 

I'll admit my routine was more complicated when I had a larger house and younger children. We downsized and using my routine, I rarely spend more than 30 - 45 minutes cleaning per day. And I don't do it all in one go. I hate cleaning so I do about 10 - 15 minutes at a time then do something else for a while. I like having it all done by the time DH gets home from work. I've got hours to do it.

 

But I do miss having young children and having a busier house. I was a horrible house manager until I found Flylady. I found it easy with young kids. They usually helped.

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Night elf, so how do you get the Fly lady plan without the emails?

 

Years ago, when I first learned about her, I bought her book. I used it and her website to plan my household notebook. I did her emails for a while but found I was deleting them more and more so I stopped them. I had been doing the system long enough that I didn't need her to tell me what to do each day. Also, I wasn't decluttering.

 

I have my weekly checklist and 3 times a week, it says zone cleaning. Then on separate sheets of paper, I wrote down every thing I wanted to do in that particular zone. So on the days when zone cleaning is scheduled, I choose however many items I want to do on that day, knowing I don't need to do the whole zone in one day. But honestly, I usually finish in 1 or 2 days because I just don't have a lot of stuff to do in each zone.

 

I rotate the zones. Flylady has them separated by dates of the month and if you follow her website plan, you know what zone you're in during each particular week of the month. I don't need that much help. I just work on one zone a week, rotating my 5 zones. So I get deep cleaning done in my whole house in a 5 week period. Sometimes, if I am in a really good mood and want to clean more than I'm scheduled to clean, I can do two zones in a 7 day period. However, I learned to give myself permission to not stress about it. It will all get done eventually. I do the most obvious things daily and weekly anyway. For example, I clean my bathrooms a few times a week, but when they are scheduled for zone cleaning, I do serious cleaning like wiping down the walls and baseboards, wash the shower curtain, and wet wash the floor in the linen closet. It gets dusty over a month.

 

I hope that helps.

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I used to use flylady so I kind of incorporate some of those ideas. I don't have anything mastered, though. We are finally managing to keep our main level tidy on a regular basis. Next goal is to move the habits we've formed to the upstairs. 

 

We have the main level split into four zones: kitchen, dining room, main bathroom, living room. On sunday we rotate zones letting the kids help pick their zone for the week (little one doesn't get kitchen). After dinner we all tidy our zone. I have a posted list of requirements but we keep it basic for the kids with the unwritten rule that when an adult is in that zone we do more. One requirement for each zone is to have floor clear for Jack. Jack is our not-roomba brand but same thing. He has saved our normal clutter! He runs every night at 1:00am so we *have* to have the floor picked up for him. The posted rule is that we can play after chores IF we finish before bedtime. So if they sit around and whine, they lose any free time they might have had. 

 

This week our goal is to get the bedrooms and upstairs bathroom clean. We will add the upstairs bathroom to the after dinner chore rotation. We will also add the play room and school room when those are recovered (those from flooding in the basement, not the chaos of upstairs). 

 

I'm going to add detailed work for each zone once we have the daily stuff mastered. 

 

Laundry:

M: Girls clothes

T: my clothes

W: towels

R: girls clothes

F: sheets

DH is on his own, usually sunday. 

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I spent a lot of time trying to figure out my cleaning routine so I use a little of fly lady and a little of tips I've learned along the way.

 

1.  I try to do 2 loads of laundry a day this is set days to do sheets, towels, whites plus 1 extra load.  However, I never do more laundry than I have time to fold and put away.

 

2. My very basic house work is - clean toilets, clorox wipe around toilet(I have boys)

                                                  -make beds (I make beds every day.  House feels much better)

                                                  - always keep the sink clear whether it's wash, dry, put away dishes or put everything in the dishwasher and clean the sink.

                                     -sweep kitchen at minimum, if not pressed for time sweep bathrooms and vacuum main areas

 

3.  I have a set day to do dusting, baseboards wipe down, fans wipes down, swifter walls, mop kitchen, mop bathroom etc.

 4. If I get overwhelmed I set the time for 15 minutes and start in the kitchen.  clear sink, clear left side of sink, clear right side of sink etc.   When that 15 min is up I move to another room  then back to the kitchen or oneto another room.  It's amazing what can be done in 15 minutes.

                                                  

When my kids were young we would do an afternoon 2-5 minute tidy (get everything back where it belongs)  Then it was snack and rest time.

Edited by lynn
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I just hired someone to clean and organize.  She is coming today to look over everything and determine where to start.

 

It will be pricey, but once she has finished helping me purge and organize, she swears things will be easier.

 

Where would one find such a person?

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I don't have a routine, really. I work full time, and DC go with me. So, we set a timer for fifteen minutes most days right after work, and do all we can in that time. I just decide each day what we will focus on. This is new for us, so I'm hoping to keep it up! And even improve.

Laundry varies, but almost for sure on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

Edited by myblessings4

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Where would one find such a person?

 

 

You could check with your local homeschool friends.  There's almost always someone wanting to make extra money.  We have several in our area who clean and organize for $20-$25  an hour.   

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My biggest tip is to get rid of clutter.  You can't clean clutter, and when you have clutter put away it is MUCH faster to clean surfaces.  Have a place for everything and keep everything in its place. Make a rule to never keep anything on horizontal surfaces - nothing on tables, nothing on counters, nothing except vases of flowers and bowls of fruit.  It looks cleaner that way. My next tip is to replace dull bulbs with bright LED lights.  Bright light inspires people to clean.

 

My routine is mostly flylady, except cleaning the sink is my lowest priority unless I just handled raw meat, and I almost never wear shoes in my house.

 

I have a morning routine: empty dishwasher, quick clean bathrooms, do 1-2 loads of laundry, make beds, set up dinner if I'm using slow cooker

An afternoon routine: clean up the spots that fill with clutter, make dinner, wash cooking dishes, clean floors, and take out trash

Evening routine: dishes, putting away clutter on surfaces

 

I write the other zones in my paper calendar and loosely stick to the schedule.  Sometimes I zone clean more often, but at least I know an area has been deep cleaned in the past 6 weeks.

 

I get in trouble with laundry whenever I get sick.  I tend to drop it for a week and when I come back the pile is insane.

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Kids morning chores every day - their bedroom, hallway, dishwasher, bathroom benches - between the 6, 4 and 2yo this only takes about 20 minutes

Kids evening chores every day - lounge room, play room - between 15 minutes and an hour depending on their moods

Current housemates every day - Kitchen - half an hour

DH every day - Finish the lounge room, vacuum OR fold laundry OR other lingering job - varies, try to make it no more than an hour

 

Friday morning, and monday evening, are full (or at least, as much as we can manage before we burn out)  days where we try to give every room a proper clean, vacuum, do laundry and occasionally mop. Since we keep up on the most used rooms daily this isn't too bad, half the house should already be clean from that morning/the night before.

 

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I have mini-routines for the daily stuff, but the regular cleaning and annual things I do as they come up and I have time. So, mini-routines:

1. Morning. I empty dishwasher and load with any dishes that missed the night before. I straighten up the kitchen counters if they are messy. I clean the cooktop if it isn't spotless. I make my bed, tidy up in general. Often I swiffer the master bathroom because of my shedding hair. The boys make their own beds (maybe) and tidy up their rooms.

2. After dinner, each kid has a set of kitchen cleanup jobs on a perpetual calendar. When a kid isn't here (or for DD at college), DH or I will do the jobs that would be the missing child's for that night.

3. I do laundry usually twice/week. my older son does his own laundry as needed.

4. The boys usually collect all trash the night before trash day. I put the recycling in the garage bin daily and usually take the big bin out for pickup unless DH happens to be driving out the driveway. (We have a long driveway.)

 

All other chores I do as they come up and I have time. I generally give the kids cards with jobs to do every weekend. Usually, these jobs include five or six of these selections:

Clean boys bathroom, empty all trash, dust "stations" (pre-determined list of dusting chores), clean baseboards, yard cleanup, vacuum out cars, put toys/belongings away in living areas, sweep out garage, vacuum areas of the house including stairs, plus any special jobs for just that kid, such as clean lizard cage.

 

Lately, I have been cleaning all my windows because the weather has been unseasonably warm and Audrey and Rose M inspired me! :)

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I'm a terrible housekeeper and never mastered anything but at the end of last year I kept my house clean for a few months which is unprecedented. I read somewhere someone saying that the best thing you can do to keep your house clean is clean the floors every day. She acknowledged that it takes real commitment. So that's what I decided to do. It kinda fell apart for me at Christmas and my house is still recovering. But I'd get up every morning, wipe down the bathroom, which only took a minute, then I'd sweep and vacuum. I'd Swiffer about every other day. Later that afternoon, I'd make sure the dining table was cleared off. My kids clean the dishes after dinner so I'd do any straitening up in the kitchen that needed to happen after breakfast.

 

This might not be helpful, because I'm certainly not a good housekeeper, but I thought I'd throw this out there for anyone else who finds keeping up with the house difficult. :) My house was never cleaner than when I was super diligent about the floors.

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My house is not super-clean (and not even "clean" by some people's standards), but it is getting better.  What helps me most is that most afternoons we set a timer for 15 minutes and everyone in the house cleans until the timer goes off.  And everyone gets a Hershey's Kiss or w/e as a reward.

 

15 minute cleaning ideas:  sweep, clean a bathroom, empty the trash, wash walls, wash mirrors, wash windows, mop the dining room and/or kitchen, do dishes, start laundry, fold laundry, clean the dining room chairs, vacuum...

 

OP -- I just looked at your signature and this would probably work at your house as well as it works at ours.  15 min. x a bunch of people = a lot of work getting done.

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Laundry: A load of laundry every weekday without fail. I will typically do two loads of mine or two loads of the kids, throw them on my made bed, and fold them when that entire type of clothing is done.

 

Dishes: Dishes go in the dishwasher immediately. The washer is run after breakfast and emptied before lunch. My oldest is only in kindergarten so I have time. Anything needing to be handwashed gets washed during preparation or after the meal.

 

Nightly list:

Restock diaper station

Brush & floss

All toys put away

Wipe top of kitchen and bathroom counters, table, coffee table and desk (you can't wipe something that has stuff on it)

 

I have more, but Babiness is happening. Be back later.

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I have a question for those of you who do zones like Flylady.  My house is very open floor plan....the kitchen/dining/and two living areas (one on each side of the kitchen) all run together.  HOW do I zone these floors?  Cleaning my floors is exhausting and I can never figure out how to find a stopping point. 

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I have a question for those of you who do zones like Flylady.  My house is very open floor plan....the kitchen/dining/and two living areas (one on each side of the kitchen) all run together.  HOW do I zone these floors?  Cleaning my floors is exhausting and I can never figure out how to find a stopping point. 

 

I don't know anything about Flylady. I would buy a roomba. Here's an off-brand that can vacuum and mop for $180 with 4 stars. Then you can do a deep moping monthly or whatever you deem appropriate.

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My kids have to pick up before every meal.

 

I'm supposed to get up at 5. This gives me time to read, workout, etc. and leaves me ready for the day.

 

Konmarie changed my life.

 

I cook Saturdays, Sundays, and Mondays, then have leftovers Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays with pizza on Friday.

 

I set up my bullet journal weekly. Whatever housework needs to be done is cataloged on Sunday night when I plan school, shopping, bills, and appointments. If I have an appointment Monday then we have leftovers that night, meaning I have to cook on Tuesday or Wednesday and have no big tasks that day.

 

The only woman I know who successfully homeschooled with a beautiful, clean home had a nervous breakdown.

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I have a question for those of you who do zones like Flylady.  My house is very open floor plan....the kitchen/dining/and two living areas (one on each side of the kitchen) all run together.  HOW do I zone these floors?  Cleaning my floors is exhausting and I can never figure out how to find a stopping point. 

 

Quick sweep or dust mop daily, and beyond that make the floors their own zone if you like.  Or combine them with one of the zones that is light for you.

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