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Jessica Tomes is a wife and mommy to three precious (but rambunctious) little girls. She has a degree in broadcast journalism from Texas Christian University, and a nerd-like love for political science. She is passionate about writing, marketing, social media management, and this wonderfully beautiful mess we call parenthood. She happily lives in beautiful Houston, Texas, and also sells real estate!
Moms, we know you are busy. Especially those of you who are also currently pregnant — you aren’t just busy; you are bone-tired, exhausted. Trust me. I feel your pain. A perfectly kept, magazine-ready house probably isn’t even on your radar at this point. Or if it is, it’s probably somewhere toward the bottom of your To Do List (next to working out and finding a cure for cancer). And you know what? That’s okay. Nowadays, you may consider yourself lucky to get a daily shower and a load of laundry done while hopping over toys, side stepping that pile of ironing you keep avoiding like the plague, and shooting the dirty breakfast dishes the stink eye. Thank God for understanding spouses and significant others who either look the other way (or keep their mouths shut)!
But in all honesty, it really doesn’t have to be this way. Here’s a little known secret to housekeeping success: “clean enough” is still clean — no one should be eating off your floors anyway (except maybe the dog and he’s good). I am here to tell you that you can keep a clean house, and it doesn’t have to kill you. Just a few stolen hours to yourself each week (think nap time or preschool), and you could have even more quality time to spend with your family, in a house that doesn’t look and smell like a total dump.
Before You Start
Fill an empty bucket with all your cleaning supplies. This will make it easier to tote them from room to room and will save you time. Toss dirty cleaning cloths immediately into the washing machine so you will be ready to run the load as soon as you are done cleaning.
Keep in Mind
You should always clean top to bottom, left to right (starting with the highest point in the room). This way you won’t skip over anything, and you won’t knock dust or dirt into an area you have already cleaned. Make sense?
Try this! “Task Cleaning” vs. “Zone Cleaning”
Zone Cleaning, or cleaning room by room will only slow you down. Have you ever spent hours cleaning your bathroom? My point exactly. Task Cleaning (dusting everything at once for example), gets you moving. And who couldn’t use a little extra exercise every week?
Pencil in the Clean!
Create a Daily Cleaning Schedule. Here is a sample schedule to try. Feel free to change this around and make it your own. The point is not to set yourself up for failure. Get empowered, get organized, and take control of your housekeeping once and for all. And if all else fails, you can always hire some help…
Mondays: Dust the entire house, working from room-to-room.
Tuesdays: Mirrors and Glass, Surface Cleaning. Wipe down all surfaces and counters throughout the house, disinfecting as necessary. Don’t forget about door handles and light switches, especially in flu and cold seasons because they really hold germs.
Wednesdays: Kitchen and Bathrooms. I make sure all dishes are done before retiring to bed each night. If we’ve had a particularly messy dinner, I will quickly wipe down counters and floors as well. But save the big-time cleaning for this specific day. Otherwise you will make yourself crazy!
Thursdays: Vacuum and Mop the entire house (as needed). If you’ve got a giant house, you may want to do one floor one week, and another floor the next. Give yourself some grace, mama! You deserve it.
Fridays: Furniture Fabric. Move through the house stripping and remaking beds as necessary. Tidy any throw pillows and blankets. Brush furniture surfaces with a vacuum attachment as needed. This could also be a good time to deal with laundry and ironing (if you can get away with doing it once a week). Then everyone has clean bedding and clothing to enjoy for the weekend!
Saturdays and Sundays: Spend time with your family! This also leaves time for meal planning, grocery shopping, and meal preparation for the week ahead.
Once a month: Wipe and disinfect the wastebaskets, wipe and dust ceiling fans, and dust baseboards and doors.
Every 3 to 6 months: Dust crown molding, scrub the stove clean, and empty and clean out cabinets and closets (this could also be once a year).
Good luck, Mama Chicks! You’ve totally got this. What are some of your best cleaning tips and tricks? We would love to hear in the comments section below!