Wednesday, July 1, 2015

How to Deep Clean Without Going Cray-Cray: My 5 Tips

For a little over a year, I had someone helping me clean my house. I had two babies 15 months apart and I have to say, cleaning wasn't something that came easy during that season.  Now that I'm pregnant again, and working on my final trimester for baby #5, without a housekeeper, I need all the help and tips I can get.  Here are 5 ways to stay responsible, even when you're in over your head with housekeeping, chores, and the like.

1. Devote a week just to decluttering your entire house.

Molly's last week of school, I vowed to get our house decluttered before Summer regaled us with heat.  I bagged up excess and put it in our attic for a rainy day.  I decluttered all toys, books, closets, and dressers.  I wanted to only spend 5 minutes tops putting toys away. I didn't want to run across another pair of winter pants in the girls' room.  I put all other major chores on the back burner just for a week so that I could purposefully devote any free hours to this task.  I had piles in my closet by the end of the week, and I just carried it all up to the attic on Friday. Done! If a lot of things give you joy, use your attic!

2. Devote a week to cleaning.

With all of the clutter out of my way,  I started in on the bigger tasks. I devoted the entire week before our Disney vacation to deep cleaning: the nasty fridge, the bottom of the oven, the bathrooms, the wooden furniture that needed dusting. I did not want to come home to a nasty, dirty house... and guess what? I accomplished my goal, and even my husband noticed and commented when we returned from our trip: "Wow! Look! It is so nice to come home to a clean house!"

3. Maintain the clean.

Now that your house is fresh- decluttered and clean- it will be much easier to maintain it!  Don't go to bed without cleaning up the kitchen from dinner. Don't be like me- go the extra mile and don't leave anything in the sink for the night.  Do an extra load of laundry after dinner.  Polish the furniture and scrub under the toilets and sweep/mop down the stairs at least once a week. Sweep off the front and back porch every Wednesday. You know yourself: establish some good routines that you can make doable.

4. Build on the clean: Sprucing.

As you keep to your routine, you will notice yourself going further and having the energy for a few extra windows and sinks. Every time you clean a room, add a little extra gesture of love. A bouquet of flowers for a freshly cleaned kitchen! A wonderful candle for a nice-smelling bathroom! A little goes a long way, and these extra touches affirm all of the work you have done!  You will be able to enjoy your clean house even more when you affirm yourself. Another idea: get yourself a treat for a job accomplished and well-done.

5. Get your kids in on it.

The first week we were back from vacation, I created a detailed Chore Chart for all of our kiddos over 3. :)  My oldest daughter has a list of possible chores, and when Chore time comes around, after breakfast and after lunch, so - 2 times a day, she can pick two chores to do off the chart. If she does all of her chores for the day, she gets a sticker. If she gets a sticker Monday- Friday, she gets something as a prize from the Dollar Store on Friday.  My daughters 4 and 3 have their own list of little Chores and get a sticker on their Chore Chart for accomplishing at least two or three each day. They also get to pick out something little at the Dollar Store on Friday.

I hope some of these ideas help you to Deep Clean without going cray-cray!!! Don't put too much pressure on yourself- where is the fun in that?  ;)   Try writing it down and posting it on your fridge, so that you remember which week is which- which is for decluttering, cleaning, maintaining, sprucing, and getting kids to help! ;) Then, after you have completed the cycle, start back at the top.

adding my link to Jenna's 5 favorites.


Mrs. Amen said...

Tips 1, 2 & 3 are sooooo key. Decluttering is such a process. I'm making major progress and I see the light at the end of the messy tunnel.

Tacy said...

Yes yes yes! Messy tunnel- I hear that.

Laura {a spoonful of joy} said...

Oh, isn't it the best feeling while you're on vacation to know that the house is in order for when you arrive home!?!
Great tips - #1 is definitely my favorite! I love getting rid of stuff but my husband does NOT! So our compromise is the attic & it works perfectly for us!

Tacy said...

Yes yes! I made a master list for future trips so that can exactly replicate all that I did.:-)