You're stuck at home...I'm stuck at home...We're all stuck at home. Spring has arrived and cleaning is upon us, so lets get down to the nitty gritty.
If you know me, you know I hate clutter. So keeping a home clutter free is important for me. Cleaning on the other hand isn't my top priority. Don't get me wrong, I love a clean home but I don't seek perfection. No matter your personality, cleaning and organizing are a necessary evil.
Here are some Tips & Tricks for keeping a Tidy & Clean Home.
DECLUTTER - Removing the mountains makes cleaning easier. I learned early on that you can't have a clean & happy space with piles of clutter. Clutter comes in many forms but the trick here is, everything in your home needs to have a home. Once you've created a file or basket for the mail, a closet for your clean laundry & a pantry for the chips.....you're rolling your eyes and laughing at me aren't you, you know what's coming, the biggest TIP I can give you is when you use something or your people use something, put it away, right away. It takes a few extra moments each day but it will save you a ton of time in the future.
Let's assume you have large piles of clutter or rooms filled with junk (that old Christmas tree, a busted hot tub cover, boxes of boxes....ok, now we're talking about my problem areas lol). My inspiration, Yvonne from the Stone Gable Blog, gives a simple plan to declutter. She reminds us to tackle it one bite at a time. Give it 15 minutes a day, every day & before you know it, you'll have it done & it won't seem awful. Here's her easy to use list:
CLEAN - Cleaning is an ongoing process. You can't have a clean home if you only clean once a week, twice a month or monthly. If you're like me, your day to day life is really busy. Who has time to clean? You do! TIP In 30 minutes a day you can have a clean home. Here's how, if you see a mess, clean it up (I'm talking kitchen spills, crumbs, puppy prints etc.). Make your bed every morning before you walk away from it. Here's Yvonne's trick - Start cleaning somewhere and when 30 minutes is up, stop cleaning. The next day, pick up where you left off. Choose a room, start top to bottom & clean your floor last. The key to doing this efficiently is in your cleaning bucket or your "Tool Box" as Yvonne would call it. Here are her top must have tools:
- paper towels
- scrub brush
- glass cleaner
- multi-purpose cleaner (We both use Thieves concentrate and water in a spray bottle)
- a wet cloth
- furniture polish
- a dust cloth
- toothbrush (for getting into corners)
- plastic bags
- timer (I use my phone)
- feather duster
OTHER STUFF -
- A few things tidy people do at night to make life easier. ONE - Pick up before you check out. Each night before bed, I put my pillows back on the sofa, I put throws away & I pick up after my puppies (mostly so I don't stub my toe on that awful big bone in the middle of the night, ouch). TWO - Set a sorted load of dirty laundry by the door to wash first thing in the morning (I do this while the dogs run outside & I scoop their breakfast). THREE - Review tomorrows schedule, read for 20 minutes & say a prayer.
- Many of us work from home. Leaving piles of work laying around is really easy. A Quick Trick is to grab a storage tub & fill it with whatever contents are in a bottom drawer, storage ottoman or armoire....we're talking hats, mittens, blankets, Winter stuff you don't need now but want to keep. Use this space for work instead.
- Fake it til you make it - Hopefully soon friends will be coming over & if you haven't been following the rules. You have T minus 20 minutes until arrival. Now what?? Grab a couple of rags, a bottle of cleaner & a basket. Hit only the rooms they'll see. Fluff the pillows, tidy the table tops (junk in the basket you grabbed, throw it in your room when you're done; shut the door) & quickly dust the obvious surfaces. Clean the bathroom sink & stool, empty the garbage. Clean the kitchen counters, dishes in the dishwasher & wipe out the sink. Light a candle & put on some lip gloss. You're done!