Happy 2014! Let’s make this the year we finally get it all clean and organized!
It’s week one of Start Here. – I’m so excited to start with you! If you didn’t see the first post and grab the free printable, go back to the post for the full overview and explanation here. If you want to follow along on Instagram or post your own progress, I’d love it if you used the hash tag #cmstarthere. You can go here to see the post earlier this week that explains the daily cleaning tasks.
You’ll notice on the schedule/calendar that there are 6 rotating cleaning tasks for the week – one every day Monday – Saturday. These are tasks that take 15-30 minutes and will keep the house tidy. I have found that cleaning the house all on one day is futile. Doing a little bit every day is the way to keep it cleaned up most of the time. Want to try it for yourself? Keep reading for a little explanation…
Mondays – Bathrooms
If you’ve been following along for more than a week, you know that every Monday I clean bathrooms. Below is my complete cleaning process to get all four bathrooms in our house clean in 15 minutes or less (here’s a post too). I don’t wash the floors because I wash them on Thursdays – I find that this really cuts down on bathroom cleaning time. Here’s a post that shows how I approach the bathroom cleaning (and speed clean).
I like to keep my bathroom cleaning supplies in each bathroom, you might prefer to tote a cleaning bucket or caddy from bathroom to bathroom. You’ll need:
- your favorite all-purpose cleaner (look for non-toxic cleaners – they work just as well)
- glass/mirror cleaner
- toilet cleaner/brush
- microfiber window cloth (my preference for mirrors)
- 3+ microfiber cleaning cloths for each bathroom (1 for counters, 1 for tub/shower, 1 for toilet)
Tuesdays – Dust House
Rule #1 for me with dusting is to only keep out things that we love and need.
If it just collects dust, it’s not worth moving every week to dust under. Especially with little kids, I have a minimal amount of “stuff” on display just so I don’t have to worry about anything happening to it. Having uncluttered surfaces makes dusting so much easier. And dusting weekly makes it simple to dust the next week.
My favorite dusting products? Grab your microfiber!
My preference for dusting are microfiber cloths and a dusting mitt. I also use a large extendable reach duster for cobwebs and hard to reach ceilings and corners. This can be an expensive tool, but if you have lots of tall ceilings it’s worth it. I also use a natural beeswax polish to polish and condition some furniture as needed. I work from top-down and quickly go through the house dusting all the hard surfaces, staircase and railings, tvs and furniture. For the weekly dusting, I move quickly and do what I can in 15 minutes. If I have extra time (beyond that 15 minutes), I’ll do a deep clean dusting or fit in rotating cleaning tasks like dusting light fixtures or ceiling fans.
Wednesdays – Vacuum
On Wednesdays I haul out the vacuum and vacuum all the carpets in the house. I also use a floor sweeper (shown in my favorites) for the hardwood flooring in our house during the week and I use the attachments for corners and edges on vacuum day. Curious why I vacuum on Wednesdays? Tuesday is dusting day so Wednesday is the day to clean up the dust from Tuesday. Simple as that.
What’s my method?
Move quickly – start on the second floor with the room that’s the farthest away from the stairs. I vacuum all the bedrooms, bathrooms, the upstairs hallway, stairs, and then the lower level. The lower level is mostly hardwood, so I vacuum corners and do a quick vacuum of the carpeted rooms. This ensures that all the dust and dog hair is picked up and the floors are ready for washing tomorrow.
My favorite floor cleaning products?
Most importantly, find a vacuum cleaner that works for your budget and home. I love my Dyson vacuum cleaners – they are amazing! That being said, whatever vacuum cleaner picks up the dirt and keeps your floors clean, use it and implement it in your weekly cleaning routine. I also like to use a broom or sweeper in between vacuuming to keep the hardwood floors clean in between weekly vacuuming. The sweeper gets pulled out daily to keep the dog hair and dust bunnies at bay. I also like having a steam carpet cleaner to clean individual rooms, stairs, and high traffic areas in between professional carpet cleanings. I just use hot water and vinegar (equal parts vinegar and water) as the cleaning solution – no soapy residue and it lifts stains easily.
Thursdays – Wash Floors
I wash floors on Thursdays because all the hard floors were vacuumed or swept on Wednesday. Yes, it would be better to vacuum and wash floors all on the same day, but I just don’t have that kind of time. So, I split it up and vacuum on Wednesdays and wash floors on Thursdays.
What’s my Method?
I’ve experimented with more floor cleaning products then I’d like to admit and have finally come around to washing my floors with vinegar and water. You can read more about my technique in this post. I prefer a steam mop for tile (bathrooms and mudroom) and vinyl ( laundry room). I use a refillable spray mop on days when I only have time for a quick wash or if the floors need to be washed before Thursday. I use water, vinegar, and essential oils in the spray mop as well. Why do I use the water and vinegar method? It’s the only floor cleaner that I’ve found that gets up everything and doesn’t leave a sticky residue or a film. I add the essential oils so my house doesn’t smell like a pickle factory (I don’t like the smell of vinegar – at all). And in all my research, I’ve found that vinegar and water is what is professionally recommended by most flooring companies and installers. (Note: if you have waxed hardwood floors DO NOT use vinegar/water.)
Fridays – Catch-All Day
I designate Friday as my catch-all day. What does catch-all mean? Depending on the day and week, I use Fridays to get caught up on uncompleted tasks, menu planning, bill paying, laundry, a rotating cleaning task, or I just take the day off. I like going into the weekend with a clean house so I can soak up all the family time possible.
Saturdays – Sheets/Towels
Saturday is sheets and towels day. I find that doing a couple loads of sheets and towels on Saturdays helps in the laundry department. If everything works the way I want it to, I wash a load of white towels, a load of colored towels and one or two loads of sheets. I start right away in the morning and then by early afternoon clean sheets are on the beds and clean towels are folded and put away. It isn’t a non-stop Saturday of laundry, I just tend to the laundry when it needs to be switched from the washer to dryer and then from the dryer to folded and put away.
So how’s the routine-ing coming along? Any questions on the weekly cleaning tasks?
Want to join in on the fun? Grab a FREE cleaning and organizing calendar for January and give it a go. Follow along all month for motivational posts and tips to keep up with the daily and weekly tasks. New here? I’ll be explaining the tasks more in the next week – it’ll be fun and easy to implement, I promise!
Want to make 2014 the year that you cleaned and organized everything? Me too!
(If you like this calendar style, you’ll love The Simplified Life Series in my shop!)