I took to Instagram to ask my lovely readers what tried and true house cleaning tips and routines were out there! And many of you wanted me to share my findings. As a busy mom of two littles and a husband that works A LOT – I’ve been eager to find routines that fit our crazy life. The fact is that I have minimal time in my day to dedicate too much to cleaning. I’ve been terrible at finding a good routine that I can keep consistent with – and one that’s manageable with kids underfoot. Many of you mentioned having someone come to clean – yes, this is a great idea and when I worked a full-time job I had a cleaner come every two weeks but in this case, as a stay at home mom, I wanted to see if I could create a routine that would allow me to save the money we’d spend on a cleaner and instead, develop a system I could maintain on my own. Sounds easier said than done – but I wanted to give it a try – and then still look into maybe even a monthly cleaner to help with the deep clean work 🙂 I’m still in the process of figuring out exactly how this will look for me but I’ve used bits and pieces of all of the amazing advice I’ve been given to start creating this cleaning routine. I hope some of this advice helps you too!
First, I had two ladies recommended to me who are pros when it comes to cleaning and both have awesome templates and such to use and follow – and since I’m not about to re-invent the wheel I wanted to share links to their info here The Case for Simple and Clean Mama. Below is a list of all of the great ideas many of my readers put into use! I hope it helps in your effort to create a system that works for you too!
- Never leave a room empty-handed – pick up as you go!
- Set a laundry day. It doesn’t have to be the only day you do laundry, but do a lap around your house and grab towels, pillowcases or sheets…the bigger things you pass over.
- Consciously doing daily tasks like making the bed and at night, making sure counters are cleared of clutter and wiped (love a good counter spray).
- Continuously rinse and load dishes after meals and snacks…kitchen looks clean all day and less overwhelming than if I were to come back to it after dinner.
- Separating bathroom day and floor day..makes bathrooms extra quick and allows more time to do the shower, etc if you don’t have to tackle floors at the same time.
- It’s easiest to stay tidy if every item has a home and a place to be put. Clean as the day goes on.
- Start laundry in the morning and have a goal. “Today I’ll clean the toilet” or “I’ll wash mirrors”
- At night – every toy is put away! I also vacuum each evening after dinner (just under the table). We have a small house so it’s doable to do a quick once over in the evening.
- I sweep, vacuum, and steam mop. Once per week (sweep more if I need to). Might be gross but I’d rather spend my energy elsewhere. However, when my child goes to bed I do 5 things: laundry (usually Mondays and Thursdays), any dishes, put all toys in their places, wipe table/high chair, and countertops, and restock diaper caddy. I don’t let myself go to bed unless I’ve done all of those things but they can be done in 15 minutes, with the exception of laundry. Laundry days I pour myself a glass of wine and watch the bachelor or journal. But that’s it. That works for me!
- Having a vacuum that is cordless and can suck anything, anywhere all the attachments/size, my Dyson is my favorite cleaning product. I seriously vacuum up to 3 times a week and whenever a spot is messy. It’s so easy to do with it and doesn’t even feel like a chore!
- I stay on top of the dishes. I won’t let them sit more than 24hrs untouched. Sometimes I’ll leave them in the sink overnight, but overall I keep on top of it especially after meals, that way they don’t build up. (And during the day you won’t feel guilty having last nights dishes with today’s dishes).
- Laundry for me is anytime I have a full load ready to go between all the hampers or just one. I don’t have a specific day, I just do it when necessary and keep on top of it.
- Once a month or so I take a stiffer duster and wipe Knick knack/lamps/random things down.
- We do all toilets and kids do too… legit once or every two weeks I clean and wipe down the toilet and avoid letting pee and such build-up.
- Countertops/dining room table, anything surface space that is always used especially with food- I love my all-purpose spray and I use that with a paper towel to wipe the whole surface down regularly. It helps keep crumbs off the floor and I know I’m using a more clean surface.
- I use disinfecting wipes to wipe out sinks/faucets/toilets too- and overall handles/whatever else is regularly touched.
- My biggest downfall and pet peeve is putting things away like laundry/the dishwasher.
- A clean kitchen is a top priority as it’s center of the home: dishes, wipe down countertops & kitchen table, go through the fridge for food going bad, sweep the floor if needed, light a candle (daily)
- Vacuum whole house (hardwood floors with rugs), clean toilet, laundry, fresh bath towels (weekly on weekend).
- Scrub bathroom counter, clean shower/bathtub, fresh sheets & pillowcases (monthly).
- Dust furniture & scrub floors about 2x a year if I’m being honest. Also, I’m not big on “built-ins” and “Knick-knacks” I see them as junk & dust collectors. Minimal decor = less dusting.
- I literally cap off at 30 minutes a day, Monday-Saturday for actual cleaning. Divide your home into sections and try to be even in timing. For example, I might group both kid’s bedrooms, their upstairs carpet, and the stairs and landing all together. Those all get vacuumed, dusted, etc on one day, only 30 mins worth. Then Tuesday might be my kitchen. Etc etc. Sunday is reserved for meal planning for the week, then grocery shopping and meal prepping if you do that sort of thing. Do a load of laundry a day, or every other, and designate one day a week for all towels, and one day for sheets. The reason I love it, is between two small kids, one cat, and one dog… I needed to feel like I could have someone stop over unannounced, and I wouldn’t be embarrassed about my house. This way, literally NO space in your home hasn’t been cleaned in over a week! But I work lots and lots of hours, so it was too daunting to try and spend three hours of my day and a half weekend to cleaning!! So this really does work and help and now I’m motivated to get back on track.
- We like to have a fully clean home at once so we do one big clean a week, usually when our son is napping. We start around breakfast, then take turns watching him and both finish up for his hour and a half nap. We are both really good cleaners so we do fast but thorough. I do all the counters, bathrooms and kitchen, and my husband sweeps, steam cleans and vacuums the floors. We both take bedroom sheets and make the bed together. Then we do laundry every night. It may seem like a waste but I’d rather do a bunch of moderate loads than a few huge ones. We fold right on the bed and put it away that night. I fold and put away pants, underwear, and PJs, and my husband does all of the clothes hanging.
- The thing that I mostly keep up with is the laundry- every day is a load! I have one of those washers with auto-sensing- so if it’s just a few things it’s ok! There you have it! I’ll be back to the blog soon with the system I put into place using a lot of this advice and piecing together what works for our family.