Keeping a clean and organized home


Keeping my house clean and organized isn’t something that comes to me naturally. By nature, I’ve always been a little bit sloppy and a pack rat. That started to change when my husband and I bought our first house. When we bought our house, usable storage capacity was not at the top of must-have list. No, we fell in love with our century old home’s original charm. The hard wood floors, claw foot tub, stained glass window and cherry wood inlay on the floor in the master bedroom, the gorgeous mantel and fireplace, the built-ins…love at first sight. When we initially moved in, we only needed two bedrooms, and the third became the catch all for the house. Then we had a second baby, and all of the stuff, and boy, was there a lot of stuff, had to be dispersed throughout the rest of the house. And then there was clutter. Way too much clutter for my happiness. I didn’t attempt to deal with it until late last summer when I initiated a major life style change (more exercise, 20 lb weight loss, Dave Ramsey to get our finances in control, so on so forth). Everything about my life got a little more organized, including my home.

First, I found a way to keep my house clean with a well thought out cleaning schedule that I stole from Pinterest and tweak to make it fit my routine. This month, I started doing one organizing project per week and will continue the trend until my house is worthy of http://www.organizedliving.com/. That’s the plan, anyway.

So, for your reading enjoyment, I present you with my detailed weekly cleaning schedule and two quick easy organizing tips that didn’t cost me a single penny. First, how I keep my house clean each week without feeling like all I do is clean house.

Monday:

  • Laundry day: Wash, dry, fold, iron and put away clothes all day long. I also wash our slip cover for the couch and the dogs bedding. This is an all day affair for me, but it works well because I very rarely work Mondays.
  • Vacuum main rooms: For me, this is the living room, kitchen, and my children’s rooms. I usually drag the vacuum through the whole house because you see every speck of dirt on hardwood floors, but you can do whatever suits you best.
  • Put trash/recycling out.

Tuesday:

  • Bathrooms: Clean everything in the bathroom: scrub toilet, shower, tub, and sink, replace towels and washcloths, sweep/mop floors, clean mirrors, restock toilet paper, put out fresh towels, clean out drawers and cabinets.
  • Mop all floors: I use my Bissell Steam and Sweep (http://www.bissell.com/steam-and-sweep/) and go through the whole house (all hardwood floors, remember?).

Wednesday:

  • Clean all surfaces: And I mean all surfaces. Anythings that can be dusted, swept, wiped, vacuumed, etc. Kitchen counter tops and cabinets, microwave, kitchen sink, kitchen table/chairs, banisters, baseboards, mantels, shelves dressers, night stands, pitcher frames, top of the refrigerator, vacuum rugs and a quick vacuum of the floors, wash windows, etc. I usually just do the windows in one room each week.

Thursday:

  • Organize something: I try to take 15 to 30 minutes to tackle a small project.
  • Wash all sheets and towels: Wash all the dirty sheets and towels (kitchen and bathroom) and put out fresh ones.

Friday:

  • Vacuum: just a quick go through the house because I like having clean floors.

Over the weekend:

  • Bathe the dog.

Everyday:

  • Dishes. Wash and put them away. Empty the dishwasher.
  • Tidy the house: As you go room to room, put things away. Pick up toys, any dirty clothes of the floor, put shoes away, etc. Here’s a tip, Never leave a room empty-handed. As you walk through the house, ALWAYS pick up at least one thing as you come and go. Such a simple task makes a huge difference.

Moving on to a couple easy organizing projects. Being mid way through January, you’ve probably taken down and put away all of your Christmas decorations. If you haven’t, here’s an idea to keep your ornaments neatly kept. Egg cartons and/or wine cases. Great for keeping bulbs and small to medium sized ornaments organized and safe until next season. We got gobs of 2 buck chuck from Trader Joe’s, so I used a wine case, and it was perfect. They are now neatly tucked away until November.

Project number two. This is what the top of my fridge looked like. Ew. So embarrassed.

Before

This is what it looks like now. Much better.

After

Since the top of our fridge has somehow become the dumping spot for everything we’re not 100% for sure what to do with at the time, I needed some sort of bin to into. Preferably, something pretty. I didn’t have anything around the house to fit that description. So I made it. I took two boxes leftover from Christmas, one an Amazon shipping box as seen below, the second a gift box you’d get a sweater in. Dilemma, cardboard isn’t something most people would see as aesthetically pleasing. Solution, wrapping paper.

First I cut off the top flaps from the Amazon box. Second, I cut strips of wrapping paper to fit all four sides of the box. I used a craft glue stick to adhere the wrapping paper to the box, although you could use any type of sticky stuff to do the job (duh). I left a little extra flap of wrapping paper on the top so that I could flip it in to make the edges attractive. I set the shirt box inside for “official-important-stuff”, used an empty chicken salad container (washed, of course) to toss pencils, dry erase markers, etc. into. Not so much of an eye sore now, huh?

And that was my little DIY organizing project of the week.

 

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