Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Around the barnyard #9


Daddio and I were talking on the way home from rehearsal about my barnyard posts and what, if anything, I should talk about. He hit on something that maybe I haven't spent enough time mentioning... so hopefully I can make it clear now!

Are you a big project kind of person, or a maintenance person? I am of the opinion that housekeeping should be more about maintenance, than tackling big projects every single day. Just thinking about tackling a big project every day makes me feel overwhelmed!

Once you get your house under control, every daily activity shouldn't take more than about 20 minutes (TOPS)! Why??? Because it is just maintenance cleaning, not DEEP CLEANING. Take for example mail... every time you get the mail, sort through it right away. At that very moment throw away the junk, and file away the bills. By doing that, now you don't have a pile of mail just sitting out on a counter or desk.
"Oh but where I put the mail isn't near a trash can, and it is inefficient to take it to the trash right then!"

Two things... either put a trash can (or shredder) where you deposit the mail... or walk to the trash can and consider it exercise!

Instead of letting the dishes pile up in the sink all day long with the notion that it is easier just to stand there and do it all at once LATER, try having an empty dishwasher every morning and loading it as you go during the day. Then those few items that come up during the day that need to be hand washed, only take a moment!

I've already talked about laundry in another post, but I will mention it again. If you keep it up during the week, rarely will you have a day where you spend all day doing laundry (vacation is the only time I am doing several loads at once to get back to the caught up category). Folding one or two loads a day only takes a few minutes (especially if you get the kids involved in putting their own stuff away).

Same goes for bathrooms, if you are regularly cleaning them... then you aren't having to break out the power washer from the garage to get that soap scum off! Dusting works the same way, dust regularly and it won't be a marathon event. And if you clean as you work in the kitchen there is hardly ever a reason to spend great deals of time cleaning it...

You don't need to always DEEP CLEAN if you keep your home clean every day! By the way that term annoys me to no end! If you have to deep clean something, then I feel dirty thinking that I was around before it was deep cleaned... you know what I mean? Nothing should get so filthy that it needs to be deep cleaned, unless there was a fire, flood or toxic spill! YUCK!

If you are having to spend more than 20 minutes on a task, maybe you need to reevaluate the regularity of your routine or the effectiveness of your effort!

1 comment:

Steph B said...

Just wanted to comment about your laundry comments. I agree that once kids are older they can and should help with laundry and it is probably easier to maintain. However, I have a baby and we cloth diaper. I do a minimum of 2 loads of laundry a day. And, on days when we wash sheets (usually weekends) I do 5-6 loads. Considering that, I think I'm pretty good at keeping up. Laundry never spills over the hamper and it usually doesn't sit in the basket waiting to be folded for more than a day. However, I do feel like it is my cleaning cross to bear.

Also, just for the sake of argument, there are times when it is not possible for me to keep up with maintenance and then I'm stuck with the "deep cleaning" dilemna. For example, for this entire month we have been dealing with ailments. I had a pinched nerve that put me completely out of commission (I couldn't move my arm) for 2 weeks and then we all got pretty bad colds. We are just now coming out of it (although both my son and husband are still taking antibiotics and I am wiping a little nose all day). So, now I look at my bathrooms and cringe...

I just wanted to point out that there are circumstances beyond people's control sometimes...