How do you keep your house clean?

Renae - posted on 11/13/2010 ( 111 moms have responded )

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Hi working mums!



I am an old hand at CoM but new to this community. I thought this would be the perfect place for the advice I'm looking for...



How do you work, spend time with your child, time with husband, run errands, have some small resemblence of a social life and do whatever else AND find time to keep a clean house????



I have discovered over the past few months that the only thing that seems to help a bit is to do a little bit each day. For example I haven't cleaned the entire bathroom for months - I clean the shower tiles one day, the screens another, the basin another etc. I have also found that if I run over the shower screens every other day then it keeps the bathroom LOOKING clean for longer. I have also started sweeping and mopping every couple of days so that I only ever have to run over it quickly and it takes 15 minutes instead of 2 hours. But, the problem with this way is that if I miss a couple of days it all goes to hell and the place turns into a dump pretty quick. BTW - it would not be helpful for you to suggest that my husband help out, that isn't going to happen so lets not go there LOL :)



Has anyone mastered the art of working and keeping house? Please share!

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I worked nights, homeschooled, AND kept the house clean as well as errands and everything else every single day. My me time was when I took a shower. I graded papers and set up schooling for the next day while on down time at work. When I got home my kids would be watching the television as I was home by 7am every morning. I would run downstairs and shower head to toe as I worked as a nurse. Redress in clean scrubs for the day, change laundry over, (washer, drier, both, whatever) on the way through. I would make breakfast for the kids, have a light snack while cleaning up the kitchen from DH and breakfast. Sweep, mop, and clean table while kids left the table to put away their dirty dishes in the dishwasher. I kid would get dressed, I would brush their teeth and the 3rd would be brushing their hair. It took us 30 minutes to get all 3 kids ready for the day this way as they rotate when done with what they were doing. We would all clean up the living room from their morning cartoon/play session which takes about 10 minutes max. We then move to the schoolroom and everyone gets out their first subject or what they want to work on depending on age. We get through half of our daily school things by 11am. The kids get physical education then while I supervise and get lunch ready. As soon as lunch is ready they eat and then finish P.E. When I worked I would then lay down and nap for 2 hours with my youngest while my then 3 yr old would work on her phonics via computer and my 7 yr old would work on language arts and begin science or history. Once we got up from a nap I would grab a mountain dew (as I don't drink coffee) I would switch my 3 yr old from phonics to her handwriting practice, get my then 2 yr old going on her dry erase board with lines and her shapes. I would run back downstairs, switch laundry over and bring any clean dry clothes up and set them on the couch. Check on kids, help where and when needed, sort and hang what needed hanging and leave the rest for when we ate dinner. I would then check on progress and move kids on through the rest of the school day and we would be done with the schoolwork by 3:30pm each day. Each child then has their own chores, to do which is on a rotation as well. So depending on the child and the week they would dust, vacuum, clean up schoolroom, and clean their rooms. (cleaning rooms is everybody everyday thing) While they worked on that I half supervise while I clean the bathroom (totally every other day as I have 2 bathrooms), change bedding (once a week & one persons bedding each day), and detail 2 things around the house. I also make sure that everybody has put all of their schoolwork in the teachers folder assigned to them, as well as load up all the school stuff I need to grade and plan and such for work that night. I start dinner cooking either that morning in the crockpot or about midway through chores. So by the time I am done with all I need to do I go and finish making dinner, get the table and everything set, clean up as much as possible, check that chores are done, rooms are cleaned, we all help each other if someone is having a rough time getting something done. Then wash up and eat. We discuss our day, anything that might be coming up in the coming week or two, concerns or problems that anyone might feel they are having with anything and so on. After dinner the kids clean up their dishes while I clean the table and finish cleaning up kitchen. They get to watch cartoons for anywhere from 30minutes to an hour if all their schoolwork is done. If someone didn't finish their work they would be sitting at the kitchen table finishing it. I sweep, mop, and make sure I am ready to walk out the door for work later that night. (even making my meal for work) It is normally about 7pm when all is said and done. So kids take showers or baths depending on kid. As they get out of the bathroom they dress in nightgowns, and gather their books for reading time. I read 3 books each and I expect to be read at least 1-3 books back. (depending on age and reading level and yes the television goes off) Sometime we will play games as well or whatever, since it is our time to relax there is no prerequisite of what to do. They brush teeth and are headed to bed by 8pm. As soon as they are in bed I take another quick shower, dress in yet another set of scrubs and let DH know I am headed to bed for a couple of hours so he needs to listen for the girls. I get up at 9:30 slip on my shoes, rebrush hair and teeth, grab my bags, let DH know I am gone for the night and leave for work. I typically walk in about 5 minutes early but I need every minute I can get so I always clock in immediately, get bags and such settled, and start rounds with the shift coming off. Nights are both easy and hard depending where you are at, what is going on and so on. So there are nights where I don't get my papers graded like I want but I always make sure to plan for the next day. (that keeps my day sane) If I happen to have a day or two each week where I don't get everything logged then I get it done on my days off or over the weekend as we only do one or two subjects on the weekends for schooling. Oh and yes I find free time occasionally and when I do I get the rest of the laundry done. All I do is sort it though. Everyone is responsible for folding their own clothes, including all of my kids. (my youngest is now 3 and folds as well as puts up her own clothes)

What does DH do? In the grander scheme of things not much really. He has been on unemployment for 2 yrs. He takes care of the trash (most of the time) mows the yard, and keeps the vehicles running. Do I WANT him to help? Oh yes but like you it just isn't going to happen.
So here is my daily schedule. Even when I am not working I can get it all done as well as errands. We do most of our errands once a week and usually on a weekend so we don't lose school hours however we do take half days or even free days once a month or so to do stuff if need be. I always include schooling in those days though so they get at least some time. (though I get groceries as needed on the way home just because there is hardly ever anyone at the store that early in the morning and I can do it without kids) As for time with the husband, that is always up to him. He can come join us anytime he wants or just follow me around. Otherwise he has to wait until I find some free time just for him or for one of my days off. (typically he comes and joins us for science and/or history each day)

Not sure if my day helps you any but here it is..

good luck and god bless

Merri - posted on 11/15/2010

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I know exactly how you feel. The way I do it is i pick one room a night and throughly clean that room. By the end of the week I am ready to start my clycle of cleaning all over again. I do it once my son goes to bed. While he is awake I do the regular everyday stuff..dishes,laundry, picking up toys. and save the heavy cleaning for when he is in bed. That way I clean for about an hour a night and everything is getting really cleaned at least once a week. Its tough but that is what works for me

Dr Rosina - posted on 11/15/2010

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Check out www.flylady.net
She is the queen of helping you get organised!

Tara - posted on 11/14/2010

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I am going to be 19 years old on friday, I have a one month old son. I take care of my son all day everyday, do school work online, do my errands cook, work pretty much a full time job, and by the time i done with that im exhausted! I have found out that cleaning is hard!!! my conlcusion to cleaning my house is is when my mom comes over to visit or stay the night she spends time with him and i clean the hell out of my house! and then everyday while cooking i pick up as much as possible.

and my fiance dont help out much either! he loves his son to death, but everything is on my shoulders.

Renae - posted on 11/14/2010

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Thanks ladies... keep them coming. Its great to know I'm not alone. I always thought I would be supermum and do it all - but its a lot harder than it looks! lol :)

Bobbie - posted on 11/14/2010

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Hmm....I was asked by someone how do i keep my house cleaned with a baby around.my son is 14 months now. I found that cleaning while he is self feeding in high chair, taking a afternoon nap, or playing by himself gives me time to clean the kitchen and other areas of the house at 95% lol
This may sound silly but i sing a clean up song with him every time after meals, picking up toys etc. So he knows.
I also have a short time for cleaning when my husband gets home.....daddy time with baby, cook dinner and then get ready for work. My husband and I schedule time at night after 7 when he goes to bed and weekends for social time together or with friends.

squeeze it in where you can!!!

Karen - posted on 11/14/2010

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I agree that doing one or two things at the end of each day will keep things from getting overwhelming. Also I find that keeping things organized daily keeps thing from piling up and keeps your house from looking like a trash bin. My kids are a little older so they can and do help out some but they don't do anything major. The most important thing, in my opinion, is not letting the small stuff overwhelm you. If your house isn't overrun with bugs or rodents then it's not that dirty. And spending time with the family matters more than cleaning.

Rebecca - posted on 11/13/2010

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yes im a full time LNA i work 2nd shift and when i come home from work i do the house cleaning or when my sons taking a nap i spend time with my boyfriend at night and we both do the house cleaning once u do everything in the house u just maintain it so it dosent get dirty my boyfriend didnt help clean the house at first entil i started bitching and said if u want to live in a dumb u can im not i would tell him i would leave and one whole week i didnt clean and he said i dont want to live like this and he started to help me but once u get it to where its a team it works out and ur child well see u clean and want to help so that works out to like we clean the floor by sweaping it and the next night mop it and we have a routine that works and ur house well stay clean as long as u keep on it every other day and if ur husband makes a mess leave it and maybe he well help if u keep picking up after him he going to think that u well do it all the time or i do my house cleaning when my son goes to family house to vist or do sleepovers let me if this help

Amy - posted on 11/13/2010

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Paying someone to come clean it, lol! No in all seriousness the last time I was able to clean my house top to bottom and got everything 100% all caught up was when I took a weeks vacation from work 2 weeks ago! I'm trying to keep it maintained but it's not possible and my husband tries to help out so it's not possible if it is I would love to hear how! Good luck!

Maria - posted on 11/13/2010

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I know what you mean. My daughter is 4 and her dad works aaaallll the time. So no help there. Mostly b/c when he's home we'd both rather he spend time w/ our daughter than clean since he gets so little time w/ her. I've taught her to clean up her toys (sort of, it's all in her closet on the floor) ( : which helps a lot. Second we have one afternoon a week where the whole house gets cleaned in addition to the little bits I do in the week so if one place gets missed the whole thing doesn't go down hill. Also every few months or so dad takes her for a few hours for daddy/daughter time while I stay home and get rid of old toys/clothes and other junk and do some cleaning. I get more done when she's not there and they get some bonding time. (I also get to sneak in a nap) lol!

Amy - posted on 11/13/2010

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I agree with you. I have had the same problems. I try to do the same, a few things everyday to stay on top of things. No hubby help either! So for now, the house looks lived in. Some day I may get more free time to clean more, but it is more important to spend time with your kids, family, and your friends. Eventually the kids get older, and are on their own more giving you more free time. Enjoy the children while they are small.

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