A few weeks ago the mom group I am a part of had a facebook “share your messy room” Monday post. It was a fun idea and made me feel less alone in the chaos that usually happens in our house with a toddler. But instead of a messy photo one of my friends posted, “Today is my cleaning day, so at least for today the house is clean!”.
Now I will honestly share that I have printed out cleaning schedules with the best of them, I’ve even done the Flylady schedule, and I ended up with a kind of “I do the chores when they need done” philosophy which basically meant by the time they needed done they REALLY needed done. Maybe it sounds dumb, but until my friend’s comment it never occurred to me to pick a day for cleaning and other household tasks and stick to it. So after looking at what we had going on each day of the week I devised my own homemaking schedule that I try to follow week to week.
Weekly Household Tasks
Monday: Bible study + light cleaning from weekend, generally sweeping the floors and tidying up.
Tuesday: Grocery shopping + clean out leftovers from the fridge
Thursday: Mops (mothers of preschoolers group) every other week and laundry spillover
Friday: Cleaning!! My house is not large so it is totally doable to do all the cleaning in one day. This doesn’t include daily cleaning upkeep like dishes, wiping counters, picking up, and taking out the trash (check out my morning and evening routines for more details). Here is what I try to accomplish on my Friday cleaning schedule!
- Laundry: Put away all clothes, Tidy, Sweep floor
- Bathroom: Tidy, Sink, Mirror Toilet, Tub, Floor.
- Dining Room: Tidy, Floors, Wipe down table and chairs, Dust, Water plants (<<this may be the only time they get watered, poor babies!)
- Kitchen: Clear island, Dishes, Counters, Sink, Microwave, Stove, Floors. (I mop my floors every week because they are a dark hardwood and show dirt easily.)
- Entry: Pick up, Sweep and Mop
- Living Room: Pick up (I normally do this room during Layla’s nap and have her pick up all her toys in it beforehand), Vacuum, Vacuum couch, Dust.
I normally go through the chores in the order listed and try to get everything except the kitchen floors, entry and living room done in the morning while Layla is awake. She likes to help clean too! She got a little cleaning set for her birthday and I often give her a paper towel and let her wipe chairs or cupboards or the stove off. She kind of has the classic firstborn orderly streak in her.
Then, once she is down for her nap I finish the kitchen floors, entry area, and living room. I like to light candles as I finish and I love the smell of my Mrs Meyer’s Clean Day lavender multipurpose cleaner. I used to make my own cleaner, but in an effort to make my life easier while in the pregnant/newborn stage I bought this cleaner and I’m so glad I did! It smells heavenly and makes me want to clean my house. Seriously.
It takes me about 3-4 hours to clean everything, but that’s with lots of starts and stops and with Layla around. I’m sure if she was gone (and I had my usual energy levels) I could knock it out faster. It has gotten easier each week as I keep up with the same things and get my “flow” down. I randomly add in extra tasks as I seem them like wiping down cupboards, baseboards, etc. I like to rock out to upbeat music or listen to my favorite podcasts while cleaning.
I love at the end of my cleaning day looking out over my home and having it all be clean at the same time. I know it won’t last long, but I like to pour myself a cup of tea, prop my feet up, and just admire. I know some people like to divide their cleaning up on different days, but I really like having the deadline of FRIDAY so I don’t put things off and it’s all done at once. Of course, there is grace built into my schedule. If the power goes out for 14 hours and I have to completely clear out my fridge and re-shop for groceries (this totally happened this week), then I’m not beat up if the laundry waits to get folded. Life is like that sometimes, but I like to have my schedule to fall back on.
It just clicks in my brain to organize my homemaking by different tasks completely finished on each day and has made a huge difference in my ability to keep up with things around the house. I also feel like having everything clean at once keeps us motivated to keep up with cleaning and tidying throughout the week.
How do you approach cleaning and other household tasks? Do you do your cleaning all on one day or spread it out?