Just a disclaimer: I am not a spotless house kind of person. I used to be, when I was in high school and my first year of college. But I soon realized that when you're sharing a living space with others you only have three options: 1. Clean up after everyone 2. Be the crazy witch lady who yells at everyone all the time 3. Loosen up and live
I decided on option three. And it's suited me well so far. Of course, things tend to get behind a lot easier because of this attitude. And that's why I'm experimenting with a new plan.
This week the experiment was to clean like a mad person for 3 hours, one day a week. Just imagine that you JUST found out that someone (preferably someone that you want to impress with your beautiful house) is coming over. In three hours. This plan should be fairly easy to maintain- given that my child isn't colicky. Basically, it's just necessary to remember to give yourself forgiveness if you can't get in all 3 hours every single week. You will probably make it up some other week.
So, yesterday at 12:30 I began. I took pictures... and I'm a little ashamed to share them, but I will, for the experiment's sake.
|Living Room Before|
|Living Room After|
|Breakfast Nook Before|
|Breakfast Nook After|
|Kitchen Counter Before|
|Kitchen Counter After|
|Kitchen Sink Before|
|Kitchen Sink After|
I got the counter cleaned off pretty quickly and then went to work on the sink. I couldn't fit all the dishes in the dishwasher... because I hadn't done dishes in so long. I'm bad. So I did what I could, then rinsed out the rest so that when I emptied the dishwasher I could just throw them in. At least that looks respectable. And it doesn't smell bad.
|My Office Before|
|My Office After?|
|Master Bedroom Before (yes, there are clothes in that bassinet)|
|Master Bedroom after|
|Laundry Basket Before|
|Laundry Basket After|
I would say that that's a pretty successful 3 hours. Especially for a very pregnant woman.
The other great thing about giving yourself a time limit on cleaning is that you tend to prioritize what needs to be done and when. You begin to combine trips up and down the stairs with missions to do other things. It really does help get a lot more done in a lot less time.
Am I suggesting that three hours a week alone is enough to keep a house sparkling clean? No. I will be trying to mostly keep the dishes washed and things picked up a little better than they were so that I can keep moving forward. But I don't see a need for mothers to guilt trip themselves over not deep cleaning every day. I am hoping that with this plan I can have a decent place for my child to live as well as a decent life outside of cleaning.
Do you have a clean regiment? What has worked for you in the past?