How do you get the cleaning done?

Amy - posted on 10/12/2009 ( 86 moms have responded )

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Hi, I'm still waiting for the "I want to clean" gene to kick in...

I have 3 kids, 11, 2, and 1. I'm not very good at "finding time" to clean the house. I'm married to a wonderful patient man who cleans all the time--he's not the problem. It's me.

I do the laundry, but a lot of times, I don't put away the kids' clothes, and so even though the clothes are clean, they just sit in piles...they keep growing out of things and getting new things, and I hate to put the cute small things away. I get really exasperated with the constant dishes and no matter what I do, the floors are always a mess. Non-spill sippy cups spill everywhere, and I don't even care about the toys anymore..as in, there seems to be no point.

I'm not setting a very good example for my kids, and even though I'm tired and don't want to do it, I'm curious as to how other moms get their cleaning done?

It looks like I'm the one who has to do it, LOL, so any tips for making it fun and fast?

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Maureen - posted on 10/14/2009

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i tried the flylady thing... even had a support group. i think her basic premise is great, but the website is ironically such a mess i couldn't keep at it.

i decided about a month ago to take matters into my own hands.



i started a journal. i write in the journal every saturday night so i can prepare for the new week and be proud of the last weeks accomplishments or reassess and see where i went wrong if i didn't complete a goal.



i write what i hope to accomplish each week - not just housework, but family life as well. a great example: my boys are 5, 3 and 1. i want the older 2 to take a bigger part in mealtimes, so i set goals for one week where i had the 3-yr-old put out place mats for everyone and hte 5-yr-old put the silverware and plates out. it didn't happen the week i intended and i realized it was because i'm too busy making dinner and trying to clear the table off. so i took a page from what i did learn with flylady and know that it's a "hotspot" so i make sure to tackle the table in afternoon while the boys are napping.



i've also been writing in the journal a personal goal each week, and i write at least one nice thing about each of my family members so i don't forget why i'm doing this. it's not just for my sanity, but theirs as well and to set a good example.



i've also been adding issues that hubby and i need to address along with my ideas for a good resolution but remind myself at the end of the list (in writing) to stay open to his ideas as well. we have a hard time getting on the same page with discipline and other such problems.



it's been a tremendous help and i've been feeling great since doing it. i've cleared out tons of unneeded/unwanted items and have been selling them on craigslist or ebay and i finally feel like i can sit and play with the kids and not have a checklist running through my mind of things i need to do.

Jen - posted on 10/12/2009

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Sounds so familiar. I am a 31 year old mother of 5 ranging from 4 to 14. Unfortunately the word cleaning is not even in my husband's vocabulary. I found the most amazing thing that helped whip us all into shape. It is a website called FlyLady. Here is the link http://flylady.com/. The motto of the website is if you are living in CHAOS(Can't Have Anyone Over Syndrome) then it is for you. I was unsure about it, but a friend of mine insisted I check it out. Let me tell you this, it is awesome. It is practical and breaks things down to where you achieve maximum progress in small amounts of time. It seems like you have probably tried all sorts of things to get motivated without success...I really hope you and anyone else out there struggling with this will give it a shot. It saved my sanity and a lot of time. Good Luck :)

Theresa - posted on 10/21/2009

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you sound like me!!!! LOL
I found a new method awhile ago and it seems to work. As for the 11 year old, he/she can pick up their own room and put away their own laundry. There goes two things out of your day right there. It will be a fight but they can do it. Give them a time limit and if it is not done, then go in with a garbage back while they are at school and do a "mommy clean", put it all in a shed or something for about a week. A couple of times of doing this and my son started cleaning his own room without me even asking and he is only 8!
As for the 2 year old make it a game for him/her to clean up toys. Sing a little song, make it a race etc. It worked with me! You can start doing this with your 1 year old too if he/she is walking, I did this with my daughter.
There was one bucket for toys and by 14 months old she was taking care of her own toys. Now her and I are working on room cleaning.
We no longer allow toys in the living room. That is "mommy and daddy space", so now all toys are in their rooms so guests don't have to look at it. I surge through toys every 6 months. If it doesn't fit in the toy box then it's time to give it away so that it all can fit! While the little ones are taking their nap, I use to set my alarm for a 30 minute nap then I would get up and clean up my kitchen. Usually by the time I was done with picking up the living room, and kitchen, mine were waking from nap time. I did/do all my sweeping and mopping at night after they go to bed. Hope this helps!

Gloria - posted on 10/14/2009

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im a clean freak lol.you just have to be organized.and once everything has its own home its easy to keep clean.vacuming puts babies to sleep :).i have 3 kids and one on the way.my kids are 14,10 and 6.but my house is always clean.get rid of the stuff u dont use or need any more.have a yard sale or give it to your friends or church.it will bless them and you.:)if you have to have the kids leave the house for a day to get it all organized u should.laundry do a load a day.put it away as u do it so it doesnt pile up.

Heather - posted on 10/14/2009

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Don't think about the big picture- pick a little job and start there. I know, its easy to think "this is gonna take me soo long".. and to talk it out to yourself. Know what? It takes less time to do it, than it does to talk it out to yourself and sit and think about how youre going to get it done. Also, as soon as I'm done with something, I put it away right then and there, so that it doesnt pile up and get overwhelming.

Another little tip is wipes.. Baby wipes or lysol wipes.. keep a box out in your living room, grab one as you walk thru the room, and wipe down whatevers in your path!! Simple, quick, and keeps the dust from piling up!!!

Hope this helps!!

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Charity - posted on 04/24/2013

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I am still learning to balance 3 young kids and a clean house. I went from one child to 3 (twins) and it has been a challenge and journey. When they were babies I ignored housework I was sleep deprived and I hoped my hubby would notice the mess and help. That didn't work,LOL. I have gotten better as the days of sleep deprived chaos have turned into more enjoyable times where I have the energy to clean more often. Certain times of the day I hope no one comes over unexpected because my house looks like a wreck but I try but I try not to stress. There are more important things to stress over. I often wish my husband would help more I can remember many nights hoping my hubby would hurry up and get home so I could have a break from my two newborns and my older son just to have him hang out at a friends till late and somehow still expect to come home to a clean house. When the kids would go to bed I was tired mentally and physically and taking another hour to clean would have made me a cranky mom so for my sanity sake I sometimes chose to relax and take "me" time instead of cleaning time and in the larger perspective that made me a mom better adapt to handling my kids and being happy.

Stifler's - posted on 12/20/2010

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I just do what I can. I can't be superwoman and have the whole house spotless, dust free, clutter free, mess free. No one can. I just do the dishes and laundry and spot clean bahahaha

Alexis - posted on 12/20/2010

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Well first of all I dont touch the toys, and my sons clothes usually never get hung up, just put in his closet. I also have the luxury of only having one little guy that has gained an interest in helping me clean...I would see if you couldnt get some help from your oldest and see if your 2 year old will help with things like putting clothes in the hamper or taking clothes out of the dryer, dusting and things like that. My 1 year old does this and thinks its a game, so I am entertaining him at the same time. I guess the only advice i could give is on a weekend get a head and then start a daily routine. For 1 hour every morning clean everything and as long as you start ahead you should stay ahead....but then again I only have one kid and my hubby does a pretty good job at not making additional messes other than dishes.

Amy - posted on 10/22/2009

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Thank you all again so much! I'm very moved by all of the helpful responses. Someone mentioned checking my energy levels--Since the back-to-back pregnancies, I actually now have a metabolic disorder--hypothyroidism, high blood pressure, PCOS, Diabetes, you name it--I'm completely hormonally unbalanced, and that supposedly makes me really tired. Despite that though, doing the flylady.net thing has been great, shining my sink, waking up getting dressed, power cleaning for 15 minutes, decorating---little by little, things are coming together. I like to enjoy every moment with my kids--I just love being at home with them, and I'm starting to feel like a little bit of cleaning everyday is just fine. 15 minutes here and there isn't so bad--but sometimes I just get overwhelmed and want to hide. I still hate cleaning, but I accept that it has to get done. I was always a professional in my pre-kid life, and I loved making good money...but I couldn't bear leaving my kids, and I figured more jobs will be there in a few years. BTW, being a stay at home Mom is by FAR the HARDEST, most exhausting, never-ending job out there (but wouldn't trade it for anything in the world). Still, cleaning floors and toilets are not my bag, but, I'm building character! LOL, God Bless y'all...;P

Airan - posted on 10/21/2009

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Quoting Alica:

Hi Amy, first let me tell you that you are not alone!! I feel the same way!! I try to schedule my day like when I was at work. Such as Monday's I clean the bathrooms, Tuesday's I sweep and mop (my entire house is tile except for the bedrooms) Wednesday I vacuum and do laundry, Thrusday I dust, Friday DAY OFF!! :) Saturday is laundry and Sunday is DAY OFF!! I have my children put their clothes away. I started that when they were 2...so it is just habit for them. They also have to empty the dishwasher. Only the silverware and plastic...any glass or knives they leave...it makes it so much easier for me!! Good luck!!


This has always worked for me as well. I also insist that Daddy gets kids on Sunday mornings. It is easier to get motivated and start my week on Monday when i get to sleep in on Sunday. Schedules can be a lifesaver and a great motivator.

Michelle - posted on 10/20/2009

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WOW I HAVE A DIFFERENT PROBLEM. I AM A NEAT FREAK I AM CONSTANTLY FINDING SOMETHING TO DO. I OFTEN TIRE MYSELF OUT BECAUSE THINGS HAVE TO BE IN ORDER OR I WILL FREAK OUT. I HAVE ALWAYS BEEN THIS WAY, EVEN MORE SO NOW THAT I HAVE A BABY. MY HUSBAND CONTINUES TO TELL ME TO TAKE IT EASY I DON'T HAVE TO DO EVERYTHING IN ONE DAY. I HAVE ALWAYS WORK IN TRHE PAST, SO TO BE AT HOME IS VERY DIFFERENT. I LOVE THE FACT THAT I CAN BE WITH MY BABY 24 HOURS CAUSE WE DO HAVE A STRONG BOND, BUT I KNOW THAT WHEN MY BABY IS READY FOR SCHOOL I CAN'T WAIT TO GO BACK TO WORK. FOR ME I FEEL I WILL BE GOOD AT WORKING AND BEING A MOM CAUSE I HAVE ALOT OF ENERGY.

Melissa - posted on 10/20/2009

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Quoting gloria:

im a clean freak lol.you just have to be organized.and once everything has its own home its easy to keep clean.vacuming puts babies to sleep :).i have 3 kids and one on the way.my kids are 14,10 and 6.but my house is always clean.get rid of the stuff u dont use or need any more.have a yard sale or give it to your friends or church.it will bless them and you.:)if you have to have the kids leave the house for a day to get it all organized u should.laundry do a load a day.put it away as u do it so it doesnt pile up.



lol i'm new ta this please bare w/ me, lol i'm a clean freak 2 well i think i'm pretty sure i have ocd so i clean all time can't stand my house a mess i do launery non stop. i do dishes its not even funny -yes you have be organized then it helps u so u won't get backed up. this sounds all like me get rid or give it ta others don't have anything...i have fixing be 12, then a fixing be 7, then a four yr old... my husand helps me my friends say i'm one of the luckys ones- or he knows ta get out of my way, cause she cleaning mode, LoL so how do i set all my things up please help new not sure where ta start i clean better than settings this stuff up lol help thanks, LOl :) melissa

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I totally understand! I have two girls - 1 and 3 - and they'd DESTROY the house every day if I let them. I know what they're capable of since there are some days I just don't feel like chasing after them and keeping everything clean!

I'm a big fan of the Duggar family. lol In their book, MIchelle Duggar says that she uses "Chore Packs" that can be purchased at www.titus2.com. I checked the website out, but have not bought anything yet. I assume they work though with all of her kids!

[deleted account]

The best way to get cleaning done is have a reason to do it, invite friends over or offer for them to drop anytime during the week. If I keep myself guessing that some one will be coming over then I have motivation to keep the mess to a minimum.

Kelli - posted on 10/18/2009

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It sounds like we are all alot a like!!!! My kids are 2 and 4 and When Emily was born I had friends who loved me come help me clean the house when family for friends would come over. I just needed that extra some one to keep me focused and help get it done. A friend of mine told me that she would put the dirty dishes in the oven when suprize people would come over when her kids were little. I have some great news my kids did the dishes tonight. They rinsed the dishes and put them in the dishwasher. I stood by so nothing got broke but the did it to gether!!!! There is hope!

Dana - posted on 10/18/2009

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i make it a game. my 2 girls LOVE to help me clean...i put on some music and get to work. I also have a 7 yr old who isnt so happy about helping, but he's old enough to help me fold clothes and put his own clothes away. About the clothes they outgrow, i put them in a box and in the closet and when a box is full i cant hand-me-down, i take it to goodwill.

Carmen - posted on 10/18/2009

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I went through this myself. I recommend asking your doctor about your engery levels. Thyroid, Iron, Stress ect. all play apart in these. Also, to make cleaning more fun for both the parents and children set up a chore chart. Kids do not need to do everything, parents do not need to do everything. SHARE.

Terease - posted on 10/18/2009

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First, don't judge yourself. Everyone is different. I am one that can't stand anything out of place and take a lot to not pick up constantly. I feel that is all I do. Take advantage and use this time with your children, especially if your husband is willing to help. They will remember the quality time over the cleanliness.

Jessica - posted on 10/18/2009

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Well if your 2 year old and 1 year old tak naps tryin doin some of the stuff then. My son is almost a year old and i still have a hard time gettin it done to.... so i always try to get done as much as i can while he takes a nap.... i find it being alot easier on me that way. otherwise i feel like i am running in circles and gettin no where and u could ask your 11 year old to help you with little simple things.... these are my ideas its up to you if you use them or not!

Lydia - posted on 10/18/2009

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Quoting April:

I love cleaning!hehe! especially since i use Eco-Friendly products! They work wonderful.. Even my mother mentioned it to me when I gave her a bottle to try.

April



I have to agree!



I have 3 little ones, oldest just turned 6 (last week) and the youngest 19months today!



Being organised does help.



Make yourself a "to-do" list and prioritise it using the 4 D's - Do it Today, Delay, Defer or simply Delegate! A wise friend of mine once gave me the best advice, only do 1 chore per hour. Even if it takes you 10 minutes doing that chore, spend the next 50 minutes doing something for you...breakfast is a good start :-)



Invest in some Enjo! (I came across it earlier this year adn have fallen love all over again lol) I am an Independant Consultant but this is not why I have recommended it.



The kids can help clean no matter what there ages, you will save yourself loads of time - it literally makes housework fun because you will be amazed at what a little bit of water and a fibre will do (you can clean your whole bathroom in 10mins with 1 glass of water).  I was sold the first time and love cleaning now.  Not to mention that the products are environmentally friendly and are not only fibres but they have toilet cleaners, dishwashing liquid, laundry liquid!



Good Luck

Heather - posted on 10/17/2009

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Cleaning is a never ending chore when you have children...I should know I have 5 small children, ages 6,4,2,1 and 2 months. I always clean first thing when I get up while the kids eat breakfast and wake up. I do it when they are napping or even have them help me at times. So pretty much I clean whenever the kids are calm and preoccupied. For having a big family my house is very clean, it works for me . It's not easy but If I don't do it who will? :)

Stacy - posted on 10/17/2009

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My 2 year old LOVES to help put the clothes in the washer/dryer. I have my eight year old put her clothes up. I have the girls help clean their rooms before bed. I'm still cleaning, but not all by myself. If I can get the house straight at night, it's not so much the next day. I also have my 8 yr old clear the table after dinner and put the scraps on 1 plate for me to dispose of properly (freeze bones until trash day or disposal for other scraps, etc.). Maybe your husband wouldn't mind to much doing the dinner dishes while you prepare your kids for bed (bath, night clothes, story, movie...whatever). Your 11 year old can vacuum to. I have a Kirby vacuum, so I can lower the handle enough to make sure that when my eight yr old vacuums, the brush and suction remain on the floor to pick up the mess. Good luck. They're better at making messes then picking it up...lol.

Tiffany - posted on 10/17/2009

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I love love love the flylady approach, yes I have had to make it my own but lists and routines is how I get it done. i have a 6yo, a 3yo and 8mo twins If you set your mind to it and have what you need to do in writing in front of you it is much easier!!!

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I have had those days! I found that I had to put aside time for me. I wasn't happy and I felt like I didn't want to do anything. I got lazy and didn't want to admit to it. I never had me time. It was always for my kids and my husband. After I figured out what was bothering me, I got with another SAHM which is a neighbor of mine. While my youngest had her nap, we had ice coffee and some cookies and we chatted about our day and things we liked to do. Believe it or not it was the best thing ever! I was pumped and ready to go! So now it's not so bad anymore and I don't mind chasing my youngest all over the house and picking up after her. I now have my house cleaned and dinner cooked when my husband gets home from work and oldest daughter gets home from school and I don't feel guilty having mommy time with another adult. That's just what I needed.

Danielle - posted on 10/17/2009

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Cleaning...I think I remember that before kids...Oh yeah, that is that thing we do just before someone comes over. lol.



I think it is all about priorities. A lot of times cleaning just doesn't make it to the top of my list until things are really in need of cleaning.

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:) I make a small list everyday of the things that need to be done. For example, today on my list is wash 2 loads of clothes and put them away and change all the sheets on our beds. I feel accomplished when I get that finished and if I can do a little more, I feel GREAT! But, just make sure that it's a small list. I know cleaning is hard to get around to. I only have one child and it's hard for me! I can only imagine if I had 3 kids!

Diane - posted on 10/17/2009

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I've always hated folding laundry but I've figured out a way to motivate myself to do it. Usually when my 2 year is napping or goes to bed I put on a favourite tv show or movie and fold clothes at a leisurely pace while I watch. As long as I keep folding & sorting the clothes I let myself watch whatever I want. Often I will find more clothes to fold just so I can finish the show I was watching. It works great for me.

Courtney - posted on 10/16/2009

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Funny how many of you clean when the kids are asleep. When my husband deploys that is what I do. It seems to be the only time I can get it all done and still have fun with the kids.

When he is home I make one day cleaning day. That is Fridays. That day everything gets done top to bottom. The rest of the week is just light cleaning, mainly just picking up.

Sharon - posted on 10/16/2009

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When my two were little I had a hard time cleaning until I realized that I was never going to get it all clean at once. The best I could do was clean something each day of the week and keep the rest straightened up. My mom cleaned before anything each and every day and still does. There was never enough time for us and I didn't want that for my kids. I bought a waitress apron and stuffed some cleaning supplies in it and began by throwing in a load of laundry and then went off to do a room or two, just maintenance, while the kids watched one video. Then we were able to have our day.
Good Luck, Sharon @ www.proactiveparenting.net

Karen - posted on 10/16/2009

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I hear where you are coming from. I have 5 kids at home, 10,8,6,1,& 7wks. I have one word for you...BRIBERY! It works. You can make it whatever works for you. For me the older ones like to stay up an extra 15 min at night or extra time on the wii or computer. My 6 yr old likes her hair braided, which is a pain to do, but it usually works if I promise I'll do it. As for the babies, I put my 1yr old in a playpen in the room with me with some toys and a bin of safe snacks. She plays while I clean. She doesn't get mad because she gets snack time and she can watch me. This works pretty good with me so that at the end of the day, I only have a few things to pick up once they've gone to bed. Hope this helps you!

Christi - posted on 10/16/2009

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Quoting Ashleigh:

Other mom's get the cleaning done? I would like to know too!! I only have one child and find it difficult to clean. He wont let me clean when he is awake, but when he is asleep I want some me time!!



ashleigh in that situation i find it is easiest to clean before i go to bed. that way he can sleep and i can wear myself down before bed. i take mom time while he is napping and some more mom time after i finish at night. the only thing i do during the day is vacuum. moping, sweeping, dishes, laundry all that is done before bed. and doing it that way, the laundry and dishes part at least, ends up saving us money on our electric bill because we are using water and energy at times when other people aren't. hope this helps!

Christi - posted on 10/16/2009

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i only have one child but i find it is easiest to get things done after the hubby and the kiddo is in bed. i clean at night before i lay down and it helps relax me. i hate it too, but i hate living in an unclean house even more. i am horrible at doing laundry... it sits on my fireplace till i get tired of looking and it... and i hate washing it. i vacuum when my kid is napping but all the heavy cleaning i do before bed. no worries, at least you have a hubby that understands. i also turn on music and get my little one to dance with me while we clean. he ends up making the mess worse sometimes, but then i just put him in his room and put up a gate or put him in his play pen. the 11 year old should maybe help you out some too... just a few suggestions.

Tara - posted on 10/16/2009

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I just do it...When my daughter goes to pre-kindy and my son lays down or is playing I go about my day cleaning the house. i have a routine so its the same everyday but I keep the TV and the computer on and take breaks. I do all the housework and yard stuff. But I see it as my duty. My partner goes out every day working his ass off to put food on the table and a roof over our heads. I think its only fitting I make sure that the food is cooked and the house is clean and everythings done. He helps here and there if Im busy with the kids or if Im busy with cooking or dishes he takes the kids and does their thing. Its a good balance really. Im a bit of an OCD freak though according to my bf. I just cant stop myself somedays. but I do get tired too and not want to do it. The trick is doing it earlier on in the day when the energy is up...And eating a bit more than usual and more more & more coffee...

Just have to figure out what works for you and your family.

Iris - posted on 10/16/2009

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I use to be the same way. Well I started to put my foot down.. I stopped the toys from coming in the frontroom and the kitchen.. Made my children keep their toys in the their room. And the sippy cups, give it to them at the table in the kitchen. For me to clean, I crank my favorite kind of music.. I get so exhausted too by the end of the day myself. And to do dishes, i demanded a dishwasher for my dishes, so i have more time to do other things...

Rachel - posted on 10/16/2009

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Quoting Amy:

How do you get the cleaning done?

Hi, I'm still waiting for the "I want to clean" gene to kick in...
I have 3 kids, 11, 2, and 1. I'm not very good at "finding time" to clean the house. I'm married to a wonderful patient man who cleans all the time--he's not the problem. It's me.
I do the laundry, but a lot of times, I don't put away the kids' clothes, and so even though the clothes are clean, they just sit in piles...they keep growing out of things and getting new things, and I hate to put the cute small things away. I get really exasperated with the constant dishes and no matter what I do, the floors are always a mess. Non-spill sippy cups spill everywhere, and I don't even care about the toys anymore..as in, there seems to be no point.
I'm not setting a very good example for my kids, and even though I'm tired and don't want to do it, I'm curious as to how other moms get their cleaning done?
It looks like I'm the one who has to do it, LOL, so any tips for making it fun and fast?



You don't get to take naps and act as though your having guest over every night....i enjoy turning the music up...other than that cleaning is no fun. I'm a stay at home mom and it seems as if the cleaning is never ending... i'd encourage you to get out more it can be very overwhelming when your home all the time...also you should donate your cute stuff...they never beable to wear it again...good luck :)

September - posted on 10/16/2009

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I have a 4 year old daughter and a 10 week old son, and I'm a clean freak, thanks to my parents (especially my dad). Know what I like to do? My son likes to sleep in late, so I wake up while he's still sleeping (around 9 ish). I like to put on my 'cleaning' music and light some candles for atmosphere. My favorite type of music to listen to is the 40's big band / swing music. It sounds like such a simpler time; even the more upbeat songs are mellow, and I clean in my own, simple, relaxed rythm. I always start with the dishes, so they can be running in the dishwasher while I do other things. Then I do laundry and let it run (while the dishwasher runs) so that I can multitask and let the machines do their things while I do mine. Then I do the bathrooms. Then I sort the clutter by rooms, so I don't make a lot of back and forth trips, unless multiple trips are required. I also keep plastic grocery bags in each room, to put any garbage I find in the bags without making constant trips to the garbage can in the kitchen, and keep from getting distracted. I sing along to the songs I know, involve my daughter by having her join in on the 'fun' and pick up her own toys. We take time to dance, I check on the baby, and just go at my own pace. It doesn't really take that long, each chore only takes like 20 minutes when I really time it from start to finish, so I interrupt the cleaning if I need to. Then, I do the floors last, and it's usually done before noon, so I can stop and eat lunch, nurse the baby, feed my daughter, etc. My point is, it can be fun. It's all in how you look at it, and if you incorporate things you enjoy into it. Plus, my husband comes home to a clean, happy household and he praises me for my obvious hard work. Little does he know, I enjoy being my own boss, and making my own schedule, because I make it fun! And it will take a while with your schedule - however you like to do it - before the house gets to a level where you are just maintaining the 'clean' and not starting from scratch every time. Don't worry, stick in there. You'll find your groove and it will get easier. I highly recommend getting the kids involved, as it takes some of the load off of you, fills them with a sense of pride (be sure to brag about their accomplishments to anyone who will listen, including us!) and prepares them to be responsible adults and live in the real world where things worth having (like a clean home) are worth working for! Good luck, and hang in there. I'm sure you do a fantastic job!

Stephanie - posted on 10/16/2009

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Amy , I find that cleaning is a never ending with children but it can be done.My 2 year old is so messy but we are working on it.I make games out of it and make it fun! He loves to mop,sweep, and helpwith dishes. I have him toy beens were when he's done we sing clean up song and puts them away and laundry he pushes the basket and we sit and fold and he helps say his colors. I feel by making things fun you can be teaching them to. I find that having a routine is key...So like we have laundry day on sunday ect. Kids need organization it helps them and keeps us sain.But I also get like major cleaning done at night when he goes to bed. Don't be afraid to have you 11 year old help around the house at that age this will only help them later on in life. Good luck and be glad you have a great husband and be proud of you for wanting to change! I say take baby steps like everyday try one thing new you've never felt like doin and start the new organized ,clean you!!

Tequila - posted on 10/16/2009

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I have a 10 month old daughter and im 32 weeks prego now and i can't seem to find time to clean and when i do i just dont feel like it after chasing my daughter around the house.

Amanda - posted on 10/16/2009

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I am in the same situation. I have 3 ages 4, 2,and 3mos. My life seems like mayhem right now and have been recently been thinking the same as you. My plan is to (today!) get the entire house clean, i mean spotless. After that I am going to put myself on a schedule like many other people say to. Im hoping once it is clean it will be easier to upkeep. Also I have to make rules for daddy and the 4 and 2 year old about picking up after themselves. ill let u know how it goes cuz im going through it now!

Terri - posted on 10/16/2009

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Well, using products that work well is a very IMPORTANT factor!! I have found some pretty incredible products that not only save me time & effort by being so effective, they also are MUCH LESS EXPENSIVE than what you could buy in stores AND are safe & eco-friendly!! Many of the chemicals is everyday household cleaning products are not only POISON, but they also cause fatigue, depression, headaches and SO MUCH MORE!! Do your self a favor & take the healthy home tour at www.LivingPoisonFree.com and any other moms reading this please do the same!! You can see if you are using toxic products in your home & learn where to get safer & even more effective alternatives....I'm glad I did!

-Terri

Myra - posted on 10/16/2009

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I have a 16mo old and am due in February. I pride myself on a clean house because the home is my "workplace". The mentality I've taken on is that I'm the boss, and the kid(s) is my employee or "helper". I don't expect my daughter to fold clothes or anything like that, but I do try to get her involved, and that frees up the time it takes. My daughter has taken it upon herself to empty the lent vent on the dryer, and hold the clothes she likes. She knows what it means when I say "let's go put your clothes up", and she even "helps" me take the laundry baskets to the laundry room. She doesn't actually do any work, but by getting her involved, it makes her feel important and keeps her chilled out so I can actually do the work. That will work with your two youngest probably...just get them involved in some way, even if they really aren't doing anything to help. For your oldest, you can actually teach them how to do some of these things so that they develop a sense of doing for themself, and it eases the load off of you. Of course, you'll have to teach them if they don't already know how, but there's nothing wrong with an 11y/o doing the dishes a couple nights a week or vacuuming once a week...cleaning the areas they use most...doing their own laundry at least some of the time.

It's great you have a husband who does the housework, because with 3 kids, it does have to be hard to find the time, but it does sound like you want to be a better example. Just look at the housework as a life skill, and something your kids need to know how to do...just like balancing a checking account, knowing how to pay bills, and knowing about drugs and sex.

Amy - posted on 10/16/2009

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have your children help they like to feel like thay apart of somthing this works for me

Christa - posted on 10/16/2009

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Try taking a multi vitamin for a higher energy level. I take the Vitality 4 pack from melaleuca and love them.

Ashleigh - posted on 10/16/2009

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Other mom's get the cleaning done? I would like to know too!! I only have one child and find it difficult to clean. He wont let me clean when he is awake, but when he is asleep I want some me time!!

M. Rose - posted on 10/16/2009

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Quoting Keara:

i have a 2 moth old with colic i have to wait for my husband to get home so he can take of her so i can clean.... i think it will get a lot harder for me when she gets older and i have another one so im going to keep reading this conversation so i can get som ideas for when this happens


My son had colic too!  It was horrible so I feel ya.  But about 4-5 months it died down enormously and he started napping for 2 hours at a time!  That's when I cleaned.  Now he doesn't nap as much (8 months), so I put him in a walker or bouncy seat and I clean.  I get the dishes done (from the night before and from breakfast) while he finishes breakfast, but mine eats slow.  Sometimes later on in the day I can get dinner at least started while he's in the high chair.



 



For  AMY of this conversation - It REALLY helps to have a plan of action.  What needs to be done.  Once you have it broken down (bathroom, toilet, sink and tub, kitchen: floor, dishes, stove, living room: declutter, vacuum, etc.) then you can either take one room per day or take 1 day and say this is cleaning day!  Mine is Thursday and I know that I don't have to worry too much about it through the week (except the dishes and keeping toys put away).  Then on Thurs. I have my mind set and that's what my target is for that day - I don't plan anything else, no lunches or park or hobbies. It helps me to stay motivated b/c I know if I don't do it today I haven't accomplished anything (no matter what else I do). 



Another thing you should do is figure out what time of day is BEST for you.  When you are the most alert and energetic (the whole, are you a night person or morning person...sometimes an afternoon person).  Whatever time that is, don't watch tv or play with your kids during that time of day - go clean. 



One last suggestion.  Give your kids chores.  Esp, your oldest, there should be at least one thing he/she does everyday (wipe down the bathroom sink, clean the microwave, wash the dishes that are in the sink when they get home from school), your 2 year old can put toys in the toy chest or box or drawer.



 



Resources: 12 Steps to Becoming a More Organized Woman: Practical Tips for Managing Your Home and Your Life Based on Proverbs 31



M. Rose - posted on 10/16/2009

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Quoting Keara:

i have a 2 moth old with colic i have to wait for my husband to get home so he can take of her so i can clean.... i think it will get a lot harder for me when she gets older and i have another one so im going to keep reading this conversation so i can get som ideas for when this happens


My son had colic too!  It was horrible so I feel ya.  But about 4-5 months it died down enormously and he started napping for 2 hours at a time!  That's when I cleaned.  Now he doesn't nap as much (8 months), so I put him in a walker or bouncy seat and I clean.  I get the dishes done (from the night before and from breakfast) while he finishes breakfast, but mine eats slow.  Sometimes later on in the day I can get dinner at least started while he's in the high chair.



 



For  AMY of this conversation - It REALLY helps to have a plan of action.  What needs to be done.  Once you have it broken down (bathroom, toilet, sink and tub, kitchen: floor, dishes, stove, living room: declutter, vacuum, etc.) then you can either take one room per day or take 1 day and say this is cleaning day!  Mine is Thursday and I know that I don't have to worry too much about it through the week (except the dishes and keeping toys put away).  Then on Thurs. I have my mind set and that's what my target is for that day - I don't plan anything else, no lunches or park or hobbies. It helps me to stay motivated b/c I know if I don't do it today I haven't accomplished anything (no matter what else I do). 



Another thing you should do is figure out what time of day is BEST for you.  When you are the most alert and energetic (the whole, are you a night person or morning person...sometimes an afternoon person).  Whatever time that is, don't watch tv or play with your kids during that time of day - go clean. 



One last suggestion.  Give your kids chores.  Esp, your oldest, there should be at least one thing he/she does everyday (wipe down the bathroom sink, clean the microwave, wash the dishes that are in the sink when they get home from school), your 2 year old can put toys in the toy chest or box or drawer.



 



Resources: 12 Steps to Becoming a More Organized Woman: Practical Tips for Managing Your Home and Your Life Based on Proverbs 31



Lisa - posted on 10/16/2009

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The easiest way I have learned is getting the kids to help. I used to stay up all night and clean, but I realized I was dragging by noon the next day. By getting the children involved with chores and clean up it is much easier to do the major things like laundry. I have a 9, 8, and 4. They all do there part. I started teaching them to pick up and help @ 2 and it has been a wonderful experience. My 8 year old is great with helping with the dishes and bathrooms and my 9 year old is starting to help with doing laundry. They both can fold clothes and my 4 year old, bless her heart thinks she is grown and can do everything I do. Also when everyone pitches in it leaves much more time to play and have fun. It was much easier when they were babies, because I would catch up the cleaning during nap time. I hope this helps.

Tabitha - posted on 10/15/2009

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I have the opposite problem, I can't get my house clean enough! We have a dog that sheds alot so I vaccuum probably 4 times a day.



But if you're husband is willing to help give him set chores. My husband does the dishes, folds and puts away clothes and takes out the garbage. Before our son, though, our house was a pit and since then I have went through and threw out alot of things that were just taking up space(I took a few weekends when the hubby could watch the boy and do heavy lifting if need be) and then do light cleaning daily and deep cleaning once a week where I mop all the floors and clean the bathroom, it's made it easier to keep clean because I found a spot for all the crap that just piled up before

Amanda - posted on 10/15/2009

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LOL.. i totally understand. my kids are 3,,6,9,. its hard to keep everything done. so i wrote down waht all my chores are, you know what has to be done. and how i started was i picked one day to wash and hang and put up all the clothes. and i make my 9 year old put up her own clothes and every night she has atleast one thing she has to do. rather its the dishes (which i stand there and help, some of the time and we talk about our days and school and just our own stuff. LOL) my 3 year old is so much fun. we pick things up together. i went and bought her a grocery basket and we fill it up and then we go put it up and come back and get more. she has certain times of day she can get out 5 toys and only for an hour, while i fold clothes or mop a floor.... i clean with vinegar so she can help and she loves it and i enjoy watching her have fun and it teaches her responsibility to..... i bought a swiffer so she can help vaccum and you would be surprised how much they love them things. oooh they have these slippers you can get that are for cleaning hard wook and linoleum. i put them on her and hold her hands and slide her around. and that gets the dust of my floors. and she just cackles. but most importantly, besides the pick up toys i schedule my chores. one day i dust and the kids can help, the next day i mop and vaccum. one day i do glass (windex) the next i do bath rooms which i usually do about 3 times a week. but buy you some clorox drop ins for the back of the toilet that helps alot. buy cleaner you can use on everything so you can just wipe and go and not have to keep changing. dont do the same thing every day pick a day and do a couple of things each day. be very thankful you have a husband that will help mine works 2 jobs and i go to college full time. and keep up with there homework and mine. it is very stress ful and its hard but it is so rewarding when you turn around and you notice that your 2 year old just went and put her baby doll up. .. try putting a little tote and saying ok these toys are for in here this week and if you pick them up we can trade for dif toys next week. put hooks low down so they can hang there shoes and coat on them. my little girl loves to hand her tennis shoes on a hook, or you can put a small box that holds 1 or 2 pairs of shoes and thats it........ mine have there own cabinet in the kitchen that holds books and crayons sometimes i put them at the table and let them go nuts while i fix lunch and then i let them pick out the color and point to what they want me to color when im done that way they feel rewarded.. other then that realize what you dont do today you will have to do tom. and once you get on schedule you will be able to spend more time with your kids.

Hannah - posted on 10/15/2009

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You just have to force yourself. Reprogramming yourself takes time. Force of habit. The more you force yourself to do it the easier it gets.

Gloria - posted on 10/15/2009

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Quoting Anita:

I always say "I will tackle at least one room or one project each day." So one day it might be cleaning the bathroom and the next day might be dusting. I usually get more than one thing done each day because once I start, I keep going. I also decide what I can do with the kid around (dusting is okay when he's around), what I have to do when he's napping (stuff like putting things away and folding laundry) and what he has to be out of the house for (that is vacuuming -- daddy and him have to leave if that is to happen.)

I also have a daily to do list which includes, in this order --- cooking, dishes, taking out the trash, laundry, dealing with the mail and straightening up. If I do just a bit of those things each day, I feel generally on top of things.

Just use those 5 minutes that you have here and there because you often won't have those chunks of time to start and finish what you want. So for instance, before I jump into the shower, I take a minute to spray the detergent on the walls and tub, then I jump in, scrub the walls/tub and finally take my shower. I can do this all in less than 15 minutes. Later in the day, I use wipes on the counters and then later on I clean the toilet. If I told myself that I needed to clean the whole bathroom, it would take more time but breaking it up helps me feel like I have the time.

I also tried hiring a cleaning service once a month when I was feeling especially overwhelmed and sleep-deprived. I knew that the whole house was clean at least once a month and then it was much easier for me to maintain. I had problems with the service and I would rather keep the money at this point but it did help me get back on track.




when we lived in the states i would go clean other peoples homes too.its great $. but now we live in south korea so i dont do it any more.



Gloria - posted on 10/15/2009

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Quoting April:

I love cleaning!hehe! especially since i use Eco-Friendly products! They work wonderful.. Even my mother mentioned it to me when I gave her a bottle to try.

April




 



i love cleaning too!!!:) people think im crazy lol.i have a steam cleaner and a steam mop :)

Gloria - posted on 10/15/2009

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Quoting Lisa:

put your kids to work. your two year old can help do dishes, and fold laundry and even carry it and throw it where it needs to be (as in on older child's bed). Your oldest can sweet, pick up toys (so can your toddler), vacuum, dust (so can toddler), put away the laundry and also do dishes.
crank up some fun goofy kids songs, or some fun techno beat music (anything with a good beat) and everyone can dance around and get their work done.
when my daughter was a new baby I wore her on my chest and did the house work. the only thing I won't do with kids around is bleach. I do that myself when they are somewhere else. but I do make my boys take out the garbage, fold laundry, do the dishes (sometimes, mostly me and my 2 yr old do them), sweep, vacuum, clean the bathroom sink, I do the tub. and we all help with the laundry.
my husband is the one who doesn't know how to find the garbage can, the fridge, the sink, the dirty clothes pile....




 



put your kids to work!!!! kids think its a game.they love helping out.start them out young.:) if they're old enough to take the toys out and play with them why cant they clean up?sing songs while you do it.put music on.i have a steam cleaner and a steam mop so no fumes around my kids.i even have my kids help me wash my walls.a house just runs so much better when its all in order.

Shylo - posted on 10/15/2009

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I Have A 1 Year Old Daughter Who Is a Handful But What I Do To Find Time Is I Kinda To The Same Thing Everyday She Gets Up And Eats Breakfeast then she Plays until 12:30 She Eats Lunch And then She takes A Nap At About 1:00 Or 1:30 And Sleeps For About 2 hours And then Thats When I Get All My Cleaning Done And When She Goes To Bed Which is At 8 or 9 I Finish What I Didnt get done. Hope It Helps

[deleted account]

I love cleaning!hehe! especially since i use Eco-Friendly products! They work wonderful.. Even my mother mentioned it to me when I gave her a bottle to try.

April

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