Let’s face it, the bane of most moms’ existence is cleaning. I became a mother because I wanted to share my life with incredible, inspiring little people. I did not become a mother to spend my days cleaning up Lego, dirty clothes and the mess around the toilet seat that any mom of boys will understand.
I am often asked how I manage to juggle raising 5 kids, owning a business and two blogs as well as working as nurse part time. I often share my ‘secrets’, although I don’t think they are really anything special, just some great ways of making my life a little easier. This in turn allows me to spend time doing what made me want to become a mother in the first place. Enjoying my children and watching them grow.
Ask for help
This is my number one parenting tip in general. You may think, ‘well who am I gonna ask to help me clean?’ Don’t think of it like inviting your friends to help you scrub your toilet, I am well aware that such a request could lead to their last-ever visit. So let’s think outside of the box.
Firstly, my seven year old is likely my best cleaner. If you have an older child, they can help with vacuuming, washing the floor, loading the dishwasher, the opportunities are endless. If you think you could never get your child to help, you just need to take the initiative. Assign them one small task at a time, with a small reward at the end. Because seriously, kids these days have it easy. Let’s put them to work.
Another option is the next time a close friend comes over for coffee, bring out the bin of unmatched socks. I bet none of your friends will look at you like you are insane, and most of them will offer to help. Even if they don’t, you did some cleaning, without being alone and miserable. If you often have kids and moms over for playdates that involve meals or snacks, be sure to clean up while they are still there. This will encourage the other mom(s) to help you clean up and they might even leave the house cleaner than when they got there. Although some people would accuse me of not being a good hostess, close friends wouldn’t even bat an eyelash when you hand them a cloth to wipe down the counter.
We all know that it is easier to clean when we have the supplies. For some reason, mops are one thing I can just not keep handy. Be sure to invest in a vacuum you love, mops and buckets and even a small carpet shampooer. It took us having 5 kids, with MANY episodes of the flu to decide that it was time to budget for a carpet shampooer. It is really hard to clean properly without the appropriate equipment.
There are many different cleaning products out there, but not all of them are essentials. When it comes to tackling the bathroom, I prefer cleaning wipes for the toilet seats and outside of the bowl, floor cleaner, and something for the counters and mirrors. Although we use mostly dishcloths and rags, we still need some paper towels for particularly gross messes.
I also love using Lysol® Click Gel™ once a week. You open the package, click the applicator into the toilet and you have a clean bowl for a whole week! I have been using this product and it is simple to use and really does keep the bowl clean. I tried a similar product a few years ago, and had to save and reload the dispenser. As you might imagine, that was really gross. This product keeps my hands (and my bowl) clean.
Make a Schedule
Two years ago I moved from a small 1100 sq foot house into a much larger home that allowed us to welcome foster children into our family. I literally went from having to clean one bathroom to having to clean five! Take a look around Pinterest for a great cleaning schedule or make your own and stick to it. However, when it comes to my personality, one word comes to mind: Flexible. As mothers we have no choice but to be flexible. This is also true of a cleaning schedule. Fill out the schedule with tasks that you must complete daily (like loading the dishwasher), weekly (like adding your Lysol® Click Gel™) and monthly (like cleaning the ceiling fans). Everyone’s personality and cleaning regime is different so be sure that any schedule you initiate is tailored to meet your needs.
Include Cleaning on your Calendar
Along with making (or adapting) a cleaning schedule, be sure that it is on your agenda for the day. If you are a morning cleaner, set aside 9-930 to perform your daily tasks. Perhaps Tuesday is your quietest day, so make that your weekly cleaning day. (I opt for Friday, because I like to be able to relax for the weekend.) As for your monthly clean, although I suggest adding that to your monthly itinerary, I also encourage flexibility; if you are anything like me, your schedule changes frequently. Just make sure you don’t forget about it all together!
I hope these tips will help you to clean like a pro and make your life a little easier! What cleaning tip do you have to share?
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