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Wednesday, September 10, 2014

my cleaning routine

I love organizing, simplifying, and having a tidy home, so I combined all three into today's post to help anyone out there who needs to get a handle on the endless task we all face: cleaning.  

Everyone has something else they would rather be doing, besides cleaning, but we all have to do it.  We're adults, and that's part of life.  But since we have to do it, why wouldn't we put some systems in place to make it as easy and painless as possible?
The first step I took to make cleaning easier was setting up a schedule.  I went through various online cleaning lists and picked out everything I need to clean and determined what frequency I would clean them.  I have found that cleaning for 15-30 minutes per day is so much easier than the massive all-day-Saturday-cleaning-spree so many of us go on.  Here's what my list looks like:

Daily:
Everyday: Make Bed, Pick up Around the House, Put Dishes Away/In Dishwasher
Monday: Dust Upstairs, Vacuum
Tuesday: Clean Kitchen, Sweep/Mop Hard Surfaces
Wednesday: Clean Bathrooms, Clean Interior Windows
Thursday: Dust Downstairs
Friday: Clean Office, Sweep Hard Surfaces, Laundry
Saturday: Collect Garbage

Monthly:
Vacuum Couch & Chairs
Clean Ceiling Fans
Clean Fridge Inside & Out
Wipe Down Switches
Wipe Down Cabinets
Wash Duvets/Comforters

Quarterly:
Wash Curtains
Wash Interior Light Fixtures
Declutter Bathroom Cabinets
Clean Oven
Switch Air Filter in Furnace
Vacuum Mattresses
Go Through Pantry
Clean Inside of Cabinets
Wipe Down Baseboards

Semi-Annually
Go through Clothing and Sell/Donate/Toss what I don't need anymore
Wash Exterior Windows
Wash Exterior Light Fixtures
Shred Old Files
Clean Gutters

I use Google calendar to setup my cleaning calendar, so I can easily see what needs to be done each day. I start with the daily tasks and move through each tier (weekly, monthly, quarterly), spacing them throughout the month so you have just a few items each day to accomplish.  On these items, you can set "repeat" to daily, weekly, monthly etc., so these items continue to show up.
Then, on my phone I have the agenda widget for Google Calendar, so I can easily see what cleaning needs to be done that day...
The second step I took to make cleaning easier was by going through all my cleaning supplies and getting rid of anything I didn't need.  A lot of us have a lot of extra cleaning supplies cluttering our cabinets, when there are a ton of multipurpose products out there.  These are my primary cleaning supplies:
Febreze Knockoff, Dish Soap, Laundry Detergent, Dishwasher Tabs, Furniture Polish, Glass Cleaner, Swiffer Sweeper Cloths, Honest Company Multi-Surface Cleaner, Baking Soda & Vinegar

In the Kitchen, I clean my hard surfaces with the multi-surface cleaner, and I use dish soap and dishwasher tabs
In the Bathrooms, I clean my hard surfaces and toilet with the multi-surface cleaner, mirrors with glass cleaner, tub/shower with this tub scrub, and the floors with a vinegar/water combo.  We also have a toilet brush in each bathroom, for giving the toilets a quick scrub a few times a week, if needed.
In the Living Room/Dining Room/Bedrooms I dust the surfaces with swiffer sweeper cloths and/or furniture polish, and I spray the upholstered items with Febreze
I use these cleaning tools:
Lysol Spray Mop, Broom & Dustpan, Swiffer Sweeper (Our vacuum, which is not pictured, is this Hoover which is great for pet hair & odor)

I do have a few items in our laundry room that I haven't shown here, because I just use them every once in a while and it's only a few things.  They're stored under the utility sink, along with my stock pile of laundry detergent (about 4-5 bottles).
Laundry Detergent, Carpet Spot Cleaner, Comet, Goo Gone, Ceramic Stove Cleaner, Magic Eraser

I also have a bin full of rags that I picked up at Walmart.  These were $2 for 18 rags, and they are great for cleaning.
After combining my cleaning schedule and paring down the supplies on hand, I have found the task of keeping our house clean much more simple.  Sure, there are somedays where I don't do any cleaning at all, and then I have to make up for it a day or two later, but for the most part it's been easy to stick to it.

I hope this has been helpful to you! Here are a few other cleaning-related tips:

Make the Bed Every Day - Even if it's late in the day (a lot of times, I don't get around to it until 5pm or so), do it anyway! It's so wonderful to walk into your room at night to a beautifully made bed.

Use Both Sides of Swiffer Cloths - I just started doing this and they really go a long way when you use both sides for dusting/sweeping!

Add Other Items to Your Calendar - Add non-cleaning items, more like maintenance items, to your calendar as well, to keep track of when they need to get done.  For example: watering plants, oil changes, grocery shopping, meal planning etc.

13 comments:

  1. It's amazing what a daily commitment does to keep a house tidy.

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  2. Now, that is commitment!! I just need to add in three kids' school and sports schedules to that cleaning sched and I've got it ;) Seriously, great tips! A little bit everyday makes a huge difference :)

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  3. I agree 100%, keeping a house clean, especially with kids around, is a full-time chore.

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  4. Wow..I am not home enough to have a daily schedule. I wish I was...this is a great schedule.

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  5. Great schedule! I like that you shared your process so others can work their own schedule out by following the same process. Pinned it!

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  6. I am not one for schedules myself, but like you said a little every day is better than a whole day off cleaning...I totally agree that making the bed every day makes bedtime a better experience! Nice posts

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  7. The only thing I could add to your helpful tips is to have a list or box of cards with odd tasks on them to do on days that aren't totally busy. If you do a couple now and then it's very helpful. For example, throw all your potholders into the wash, wipe off the glass in photo frames, run vinegar through the coffee maker, clean the exteriors of large appliances; things like that make a big difference. Congratulations on achieving such a workable routine.

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  8. Great tips! Thanks for sharing, I can always use ideas to make cleaning faster and easier!

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  9. You sound like me Erin, I have to do my cleaning like this or it will not get done.

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  10. Great list, Erin! I'm revamping mine right now since I've moved into a new home. Not sure about cleaning all these interior windows weekly. LOL

    xoxo
    Denyse

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    1. I don't clean them all every week, but there are a few that my dogs like to look out all the time, so those need to cleaned at least once a week! 😉

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  11. This actually looks like a pretty reasonable schedule...I think I might try setting up my own section of google calendar to do the same. I schedule the rest of my life there, so why not cleaning too?!

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