|Summer Fun! (Photo taken last summer.)|
Inspired by Fly Lady (Reality Check-I do NOT use her entire cleaning schedule. She is AMAZING! I just grab bits of it that work for me.), one thing that has been SO helpful to my "choose to love your house" time is the TIMER! I've been using the timer for a while with "time-outs", but have just this summer started using it for cleaning/organizing and am pretty much addicted! (JB even commented the other day that he feels like he is on the set of "60 Minutes".)
I have a tendency to "putter" A LOT and the timer keeps me focused.
putter-verb To be active, but not excessively busy, at a task or a series of tasks
Every morning I time myself for 15 minutes upstairs and 15 minutes downstairs. Within those 30 minutes I get an AMAZING amount of things done! I really don't even believe it myself! Since I'm timing myself I don't "putter" or get distracted. I am efficient and a bit of adrenaline even kicks in! The BEST part is that when I am through with this 30 minutes each morning I know that I have accomplished SO MUCH and my day has just started!!! I can be more focused on my work when I'm not thinking of the million things that aren't done around me. AND I also know that I won't be discouraged (or embarrassed!) to invite someone inside who may pop by for a visit. I am satisfied and proud of my home when it is clean!
15 minutes upstairs (mornings):
-I open curtains and make ALL the beds. (I was having the kids make theirs, but they weren't making them like I like and I had to look at their unmade bed until they got home (when they do their 15 minutes of timed clean up)...which bugged me.
-Put the most "full" clothes basket at the top of the stairs. (I have three bins in our closet we all use labeled Darks. Colors. Whites.) If none of the three bins are full I grab towels or sheets, but something is going down for the washer.
-Put things back in their places in my room and bathrooms.
-Check showers and bathrooms (and supply drawers) and see if anything (shampoo, conditioner, soap, toilet paper, etc.) needs to come up from the laundry room or go on the store list.
I have seen this trick on several blogs: I keep a bin upstairs (under the guest sink) and a bin downstairs with large trash bags, Windex, paper towels, a "Chore Boy" scrubber, toilet cleaning wands/scrubbers, foam soap refill bottle, Magic Eraser and Chlorox wipes to make the next steps QUICK.
-Empty wastebaskets. (if needed)
-Wipe down bathroom counters with Chlorox wipes. Use "Chore Boy" to scrub toothpaste off sink. (if needed)
-Clean toilets. (if needed)
-Windex windows and mirrors that need it. (There is ALWAYS a window that needs it!...One day I will miss wiping away those grubby little hand and face prints!-Sigh.)
-"Magic-erase" any scuffs I see.
-Fill soap dispensers. (if needed)
15 minutes downstairs (mornings) coming up next!