Friday, October 5, 2012

31 Days...Day 5...Chores for Mom

The theme behind my 31 Days of... posts will be "31 Days of Homemaking". It will be 31 posts about anything related to homemaking, you know, making a home. Whether it has to do with parenting, housework, organization, crafts, whatever. As long as it falls under the definition of making a home, it counts.

Day 5 - 

Today is Friday, October 5th, 2012. Today's topic is "Chores for Mom."

Yesterday, we discussed the concept behind my kids' chores. As such, you may be wondering what my chores are. My chores go into much deeper cleaning than the kids' chores. Their chores call for them to simply pick up a room (or areas of multiple rooms), but does not actually require any cleaning.

That's where my chores come in. And trust me when I say that the kids' chores are going to start incorporating some of this stuff as well. I just want them to get to a mastery point with their current chores, if that makes sense. You know, the point where they can look around the room and know for certain that it is done, as opposed to coming up to me or Hubby and asking, "Is this done enough?" or some similar question.

So today, we are going to talk about MY chores and for a little bit of time management, we'll also talk about when I do these chores.

Now, with the above list being my Daily Checklist, it is the list that I refer to when I am at home, working on tidying everything up. This is what another blogger I know, Rachel Anne refers to as Minimum Maintenance in a home. It's the least amount of work you can do in your home to just keep it maintained and looking neat and welcoming. Ideally, by the end of each day, every single item would have been done on this list. You notice that I say "ideally." Let's face it, life happens and there are days that I don't even go into certain rooms to do any work. It happens. I don't stress over it (too much) and make an effort to make the skipped room my top priority for the next day. Easy peasy lemon squeezy. 

This next list is my Weekly Checklist. I also have a Monthly, Quarterly, and Yearly Checklist (all on the same page) but I'm not going to get into those right now. Similar to the Daily Checklist, in an ideal world, I would hit on each and every item each and every week from this list. But when life happens and something comes up, I just suck it up and try to get the missed items done first the following week.

For the weekly schedule, I generally try to get the items accomplished one of three ways. Everyone has a process that works best for them.

Way numero uno is the way that I was taught to clean when I was growing up, going room by room.

Option numero dos is the way that I was taught to clean by my grandma when I was growing up, doing all of a certain chore type throughout the house.

The third option is to just attack everything on the list in a particular room that is either in the most need or the one that is about the be in the most use. I learned this method on the fly as an adult when the other two methods didn't work (or rather, when I didn't use either of the other two methods!)

Actually, now that I think about it, there is a fourth option. It's actually a combination of options one and two and to be honest, one of my more favorite approaches to cleaning. First of all, it requires the minimum maintenance to be complete. Next, you do all of the dry work throughout the house. Dusting high and low, dusting surfaces, vacuuming furniture and carpets, organizing areas, emptying trash cans, etc. All the so-called "dry work" throughout the house. Then, you move on to the "wet work", cleaning and disinfecting in the kitchen and eating areas, the bathroom and the laundry, then sweeping and mopping the floors.

Things like washing windows and cleaning mirrors are negotiable. They can be done as dry work or as wet work. I personally would be doing them as wet work, but that's just because the cleaner itself is also wet. Oh - and carpet cleaning. My Hubby does that chore (which is why it isn't on my list) would be considered wet work to me.

And even though, the fourth option is my favorite, most of the time, I use option one. I feel like it doesn't all get done nearly as quickly though if I use this method. Using the fourth method, I can clean and disinfect my 1300 square foot home from top to bottom in just under four hours by myself. That being said, usually the minimum maintenance isn't done enough to be able to do it in that time frame. And I get stopped by kids or activities or appointments or whatever. 

The one piece of equipment that I highly recommend for cleaning is actually not a cleaning tool or supply and you might be surprised to learn what it is. I think the number one product that helps me get the most done around my house is my bluetooth. I can leave my phone on the top of the armoire in my den. It's the most central location in my home and from that spot, I can walk throughout my home and talk on the phone, hands free, while cleaning. The only thing that I can't do with it on is go around to the far side of my bed in my bedroom. I can go up to the far edge of the bed, but if I stand up on that far side of the bed, I lose the ability to have people hear me speak. Highly, highly recommend it! (I got this idea from Bree as well)

Let me know if this has helped you at all or if there is anything you are wondering about that I might be able to answer. Til tomorrow....