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Cleaning From Top To Bottom and Other Cleaning Tips

October 16th, 2012 - Category: Chores

Did your Mom ever say, “Don’t play in the mud!”

Well, Saddie, a friend of mine, and mother of 9 kids, lives by that rule.  She says that not making a mess in the first place is her number one tip for keeping her house clean.  Of course there is a time and a place for everything and messes happen when you are trying to raise 9 kids.  So here are some more of her tips, not just for cleaning, but keeping your house clean.

She calls it cleaning as you go.  She is always picking something up as she walks through a room and putting it in the right place.  With meal preparation, rinse out bowls as you go.  Her favorite time to clean out the car (a 12 passenger van in her case) is when she’s picking up kids and has to wait for a few minutes.

Take it off where you put it up.  This may sound silly, but she swears by it.  If she has a daughter bring her a pair of earrings, she has them put them back on until they are upstairs and can put them in the earring holder as soon as they take them off.  Same idea for shoes.  How many moms find themselves picking up shoes all day long?  If you don’t take off your shoes until you are at your closet or wherever you keep your shoes, then you don’t have to pick them up, you just take them off, and put them away.  Jackets and dirty clothes, same idea.  Take them off where you put them up.

Do it where you put it away.  This principle doesn’t just apply to clothing but to the things you do.  We cook in the kitchen and eat at the table.  This keeps the mess  contained and everything we need to clean it up is close at hand.  Outside toys stay outside. Bedroom books stay in the bedroom.  Up-stair toys stay up-stairs.  Hair stuff stays in the bathroom, etc.

Have you ever swept the floor and then wiped the table only to drop more mess on the floor.  Cleaning top to bottom, literally, will take care of that.  Clean higher things like the counters, then the table, then the chairs, then the floor.  That way if something falls while cleaning it doesn’t undo all of your work.

Which brings us to don’t clean or pick up anything twice.  Some mess may accidently fall on the floor when you are wiping the table, but don’t throw it down on purpose only to have to sweep it up again.  Instead catch it in your hand, or a napkin, and throw it away the first time.  Don’t pick up a toy from the floor and place it on the counter where you have to pick it up again later and then put it in the correct bin.  If you pick it up once, put it where it belongs.

Nothing is harder and less desirable to clean then dried on, caked on mess.  Instead, clean up spills when they are fresh.  They are easier to clean, and then the mess doesn’t get tracked through the rest of the house.

Organize, label, organize, label.  The more bins and containers, the better, if you ask Saddie.  And I’ve never seen more labels than in her pantry.  Her toy bins have pictures on them for the little ones that can’t read.  She laid out the toys that would be going in the bin and took a picture of them and then taped it to the outside of the bind.  She has found that no matter how organized you are, no one else in the house will know what you expect, unless you label it.

And her philosophy on help:  Everyone makes the mess, so everyone can help clean the mess.  She loves MyJobChart.com because she can assign and track everyone’s chores in one place.  They only have 2 computers so she didn’t think that everyone would be able to keep track of their chores conveniently, but with various pods, pads, phones, and notebooks, that can also link to the internet, everyone has ample opportunities to track their chores.

Don’t let cleaning bog you and your family down.  Sign up for MyJobChart.com and start getting things done.  And we’d love to hear from you.  Feel free to leave a comment if you have any cleaning tips or advise.

 

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