Cleaning isn’t anyone’s favourite task is it? However, as a relatively large family with four kids, two dogs and a guinea pig it is unfortunately somewhat of an essential part of my week as a stay at home Mum (well, I’m on maternity leave but you get the drift). We have two football obsessed teens, a child with a penchant for digging shit up and collecting rocks (please tell me this is just a phase?!), a baby with a talent for projectile vomiting and two dogs who refuse to stop digging up my garden and shedding their fur everywhere. That’s before the hundred million loads of laundry and constant catering to hungry bellies that is a daily fixture round these parts. So as you can imagine, life can get pretty grubby and I have had to create a system to cope with the mess otherwise it would quickly descend into an unmanageable heap of chaos resembling the local landfill site. I am by no means a clean freak but with the routine that I’m going to share with you, I do keep on top of things to the extent that I’d be happy to have someone drop by at a moments notice without feeling too ashamed about the state of the house.
There are certain tasks that have to be done every day without fail and for me these include:
- Cleaning the toilets daily
- A minimum of two loads of laundry (often more if there has been a poo explosion!)
- Hoovering through the ground floor areas and stairs
- Unloading and reloading the dishwasher a gazillion times
- Wiping down the kitchen surfaces and dining table after every meal
- Changing the kitchen bin
As well as the basic daily tasks I try to deep clean one room a day. My weekly routine looks something like this:
- Strip all the beds and remake with fresh bedding
- Wash and dry the bedding (no mean feat with four beds and a cot!)
- Fold clean bedding and put away
- Deep clean all the bathrooms including thoroughly mopping the floors and replacing toiletries (I do this task twice a week)
- Deep clean the living room – thorough hoover of floors, skirting boards and sofas, dusting all surfaces, changing and washing the sofa throws etc
- Deep clean the kitchen/dining/utility rooms – this actually does take ages because it’s quite a big space and stuff always needs tidying up first!
- Deep clean the bedrooms and the hall areas – the older three kids are responsible for cleaning and tidying their own rooms so this just includes our bedroom and the nursery.
- Do another quick clean of the bathrooms
Aside from the daily tasks above, I don’t do a deep clean on a Friday but instead I concentrate on meal planning and food shopping
- Wash all the towels and replace with clean ones ready for the weekend
- Create a family meal plan and do an online shop ready for delivery on Sundays
- Clean out the Guinea Pig cage
- Wash school uniforms
- Wash dogs bedding and beds
- Clean out the fridge ready for new weekly shop
- Clean out the inside of car and wash car if it isn’t raining (or I can be bothered!!)
- Mr S will mow the lawns
- Sort the food shop delivery
- Tackle the ironing pile that has built up during the week
- Change all the bins in the house
- Put the bins out ready for collection on a Monday
And that’s it. It sounds like a lot but realistically, if I keep on top of things and get the troops to help it doesn’t take more than about an hour a day (aside from the laundry!) Obviously, I have weeks where I don’t keep on top of things when the kids are ill or I just can’t be bothered but I find that for the most part I’ve gotten into quite a good routine with it now. There are still loads of jobs that don’t get done often enough like washing the inside of our windows and moving the furniture around to hoover underneath but I’m ok with that so long as the basics are kept on top of. Life is too short to be cleaning windows every week after all. If you are looking for some structure to your cleaning routine, this post might help you get started. If you have any tips to help me clean more efficiently then please let me know in the comments box below.
Until next time