I have a secret and its time to tell the world. I don’t like to clean. I know, that probably is a huge surprise, but just because I’m a Home Organization Expert doesn’t mean I carry a wash bucket or feather duster in my back pocket with a smile on my face. Along with our teenage sons, my husband and I clean bathrooms, vacuum and sweep weekly and I wash linens weekly. I also mop our wood floors weekly or more often as needed and I avoid dusting as long as I can’t write my name on a surface. And believe me it takes every ounce of my self control to portray a remotely positive attitude about it all.
I’ve thought long and hard about this and I think my crankiness around cleaning is tied to a few key themes. First, while I love to reorganize my home and choose to live in spaces that are generally clutter free, dusting somehow shows me all the imperfections that need tending to and that stresses me out. Think a nail pop, a wall covered in hand prints, or ceiling fan blades caked with dust ~ that in itself has a gross factor to add to the mix. And second, its time I wish I could spend otherwise so its mind over matter remembering its just an hour or two out of our Saturday to take care of the blessings of our home making sure it can take care of us.
Fall brings its own set of cleaning commitments, including windows before the holidays, freshening up carpets after a summer of kids at home, and painting projects before we are all stuck inside during the colder months. Knowing this going in, I’m all about finding shortcuts for our weekly cleaning responsibilities that work and making as much fun out of each task as I can. Here are my tips to help you do the same.
1. Plan a cleaning date. Map out weekly cleaning chores on your calendar and when it comes time to take it on, set the timer and knock it out. Find ways that are safe to include everyone so you can tackle it as a group, showing how many hands make light work.
2. Play music. Turn up the tunes for the whole house to enjoy or arm your team with Ipods all their own. This will help your children see that it not about the work but the attitude that makes the difference in our days.
3. Have enough tools. Make sure you have enough supplies for each family member to execute their chores without your help. This means stocking each bathroom with its own set of cleaners and each floor with its own vacuum, mop, and dusters.
When it comes to helping your kids clean as well as you do, its all about product. For floors, we use the Swiffer WetJet on both wood and tile. I actually like using the solution with Febreze added in to help the bathrooms smell fresh and I love that there is a specific product dedicated to my wood floors. With a dog and 3 busy kids that in itself is a monumental chore.
In between moppings, I’m a big fan of using Swiffer Dry cloths in bathrooms to manage all the hair that finds its way around our white tile floors. Enough said ` its gross and this works!
And finally, Swiffer 360 Dusters are my friends. I hand them out to my kids and send them to their rooms telling them to tackle their dusty space from top to bottom. We agree on what’s too high for them to try, like the top of a book shelf or a ceiling fan, and help get that done at the start. I remind them to clear the shelf, dust it, dust the items that go on it, and then replace it to know its clean. I love that Swiffer 360 Dusters make it possible for them to do this on their own by catching every possible angle even if the kids don’t remember to get each side of something. Our overall success rate is high even if I have to touch up ever now and again.
Yes, I get happy about products that save me time and help me teach my kids life skills while accomplishing the task successfully all at the same time. No, its not perfect but I can promise you its generally well organized and exceptionally well loved. How do you clean with your kids and have fun?
Disclaimer: This post is part of P&G’s Be the First to Know campaign. I received products to review and was not paid for my post. This is a great example of a brand that makes sense because I already owned the prior generation of each of the products included. Easy to have my opinions and even easier to tell you why they make sense in my home. Happy Cleaning!
©2013 GO MOM! Inc. All rights reserved. To repost or publish, please email Molly.