4 articles Tag housework

Top 8 Ways to Simplify Your House Cleaning

HouseworkPhoto by rawpixel on Unsplash

House cleaning is a necessary but stressful process for everyone. Generally, it starts off as a seemingly simple chore which becomes increasingly overwhelming as time passes by. And most of us wish that the process could be simpler and less tedious. Well, it could be, but only if you know how to make the process simpler and less stressful. This article focuses on eight ways to make house simpler.

Do a little daily

Staying on top of  small daily tasks makes cleaning so much easier. Most of us prefer to do all our house cleaning in a single day, the main reason being the lack of time during weekdays due to work. However, doing a few small tasks daily such as wiping counters and washing dishes can make a huge difference. The aim here is to avoid building smaller chores into large ones.

Make a Schedule

Staying on top of things is not as easy as it sounds especially because there is a plethora of other stuff which occupies your mind and could cause you to forget that you have to do the dishes or wipe the counters. That is why it is important to have a schedule which clearly shows when you want to get some house chores done. Having a schedule gives you a clear-cut plan of action and prevents lagging or idling around when you have work to be done.

Make and implement rules

 Sometimes, making a few rules could be just what you need to make house cleaning simpler and less stressful. This is especially necessary if people usually make a mess at your home which you have to clean up all by yourself. Some rules would go make it easier to do your job, especially if everyone does theirs. Consider rules like “no shoes on while on the carpet” which could help reduce the number of times you need to vacuum-clean your carpet. An important part of making rules is implementation of the rules since rules without implementation are nothing but words.

Decluttering

 An important part of making cleaning simpler is organization. The main cause of cluttering at home is the fact that everything is kept everywhere. Have places for everything. If possible, label places where certain stuff should be kept like cups, plates, spoon/forks and other household equipment. This also applies to clothes, undies, and shoes.

Clean as you go

This technique is better and easier to use after decluttering. Once clusters have been reorganized, wiping becomes much easier, maybe even fun. Wiping bathroom counters and sinks after taking a bath could be easier after bottles and accessories have been moved out of the way. Also, cleaning dishes after meals make the sink empty which in turn makes wiping easy. However, not all chores are compatible with this technique but it is important to do those that are.

Be consistent

 Consistency is important in making house cleaning simple. If you have work to be done, do the work. There is nothing worse and demotivating than being in work mode and then lagging only to continue later. Being consistent is also about doing a little each day without skipping. Doing some laundry for about ten minutes each day will reduce the overall amount of laundry you have to do during weekends.

Delegate chores 

If dirtying the house is not entirely your fault, then, cleaning the house should not be entirely your responsibility. Make cleaning a family thing. Delegate some of the chores to the kids. Regardless of the age, everyone should be able to contribute in some way (except a toddler, of course). Being a mom doesn’t mean you have to carry the entire load of housecleaning.

Consider outdoor help

 If the burden of work is too much for you, employ a maid or a yardman. Employing outside help will immensely lessen your workload and give you time to actually spend with your kids and train them in the way you would like them to be. However, if you think you couldn’t handle the workload, outside help is unnecessary.

Liz is a part of the Content team at Best Vacuum Expert, sharing expert knowledge and best tips on how to have a clean house.

Five Tips to Turn Clutter into Order (without too much hassle)

Clutter gets you down. It’s a slow creep, but eventually you realise you can’t do the things you want because there’s no space, too much mess, and it’ll take all the spare time you have just to make room for what you wanted to do.

When it reaches this stage, it’s time to wage war on clutter.

#1 – Get Organised

Everybody hangs on to things ‘just in case’. It can reach the stage when there’s nowhere in cupboards and wardrobes to keep the stuff you want because they’re full of things you no longer use.

Getting tough on those space stealers is the first step to mastering clutter instead of letting it master you. Take it slowly, doing just one room at a time. Start with the least cluttered room, because when you get a relatively easy success you’re more motivated to tackle something more challenging.

Go through all the cupboards and divide stuff into three piles:

• Keepers
• Trash
• Savers

The keepers you’ll have somewhere either to hand or on display. The trash items speak for themselves. Be ruthless and have a big black bin bag to hand so you’re less likely to change your mind. The savers are items you want to keep, such as sentimental value things or heirlooms you can’t part with. These you’ll pack away and store elsewhere.

Having sorted possessions in this way you’ll already feel like you’re reclaiming your space. Time to move on.

#2 – Find and Use Hidden Spaces

Hidden spaces include under the stairs, or even under the kitchen cabinets (that area that’s generally blocked off with kick boards). But hidden spaces can also be hiding in plain sight.

Look up, and see all that space on the wall. We tend to ignore high up spaces, but it’s valuable real estate for shelving to hold books, ornaments, collections or anything else you want on display. And the best thing is shelving works in every room, and is usually out of reach of little fingers.

#3 – Making More of Storage Furniture

Digital gadgets are part of everyday life, but they really contribute to clutter when they’re left lying on surfaces, especially in living rooms.

Storage furniture provides a solution in the form of coffee tables or end tables that have drawers and shelves built in. When you can scoop chargers, controllers, remotes, tablets and phones out of sight, surfaces are clean and tidy, but gadgets are still handy.

In bedrooms, make beds work harder. Choose divans or ottomans over frame beds and use the built in storage for toys in kids’ rooms or spare linens and duvets in the master bedroom.

#4 – Use Self Storage for Seasonal Items

We live according to the seasons, either consciously or unconsciously, doing different things depending on the weather and time of year.

Those activities generally involve different bits of kit, from lawn mowers and barbecues to sports equipment or seasonal clothing. Keeping them at home takes up space and adds to the feeling of clutter.

Self storage is an answer many people are discovering. The rooms come in all sizes and are quite inexpensive. The rental terms are short, so giving up a room or moving to a different size is quick and easy. Plus, most of us live within striking distance of a self storage facility.

Storing items not being used frees up a surprising amount of space, whether it’s more room in the garage to work on the car, or more space in the house to arrange things in everyday use.

#5 – Banish Dumping Grounds

Let’s face it, we all have them. Post and junk mail gets tossed on the side ‘for later’, keys get dropped on counters or hall tables, and shoes pile up just inside doorways. Making tiny changes in these areas can really help control or banish small dumping grounds:

• Install a key rack and use it.
• Invest in a letter rack where all incoming mail gets stacked until you have time to deal with it.
• Put a shoe rack by the door, or make it a household rule that shoes are placed in whatever area you designate for them.

Sometimes, changing just one little habit, or tackling one little area, can have a big impact on clutter.

Is She REALLY a Domestic Goddess?!

drawer-dirtyEveryone has at least one friend or relative who makes them feel like utter rubbish when it comes to matters of the home. You know the type, they usually have a gaggle of children all of whom are studious AND sporty, perfectly coiffured hair, a Cath Kidston tablecloth on her scrubbed wooden table, which sits in the ‘heart of the home’ kitchen with the Aga and Le Creuset casserole dishes. She has a job but also manages to volunteer in a charity shop and chair the PTA at her kids’ school. She’s provides her family with gourmet, highly nutritious meals every night of the week and still manages to keep her home looking like it’s straight out of the pages of Country Living. Oh, and I bet the bitch makes all of her own dresses too. And she’s amazing in bed.

Well, I’ve got 5 surefire tests which will help you discover if this paragon of domestic virtue is really all she seems. The Domestic Goddess test, if you will.

1. Check her Plugs

Does she have those automatic plugs in any of her sinks, the ones where you pull a lever or twist a dial to get them to pop up and down? She does? Right…pull it all the way out. There’s a plastic cage around the bottom to stop large items from going down the sink. If this woman is a Housework Charlatan, her plug cages will be clogged with hair and soap. They may have even gone brown or black with the soap residue.

2. Open the Washing Machine Drawer

Pull her washing machine drawer open. Just like the plug cages, washing machine drawers can go reallllly black and gunky if you don’t rinse out the washing powder and fabric softener residue. Any self-respecting Domestic Goddess will know this, so if your mate has gunky drawers *ahem*, you know it’s all a front.

3. The Dust Test

Okay, so even a homemaking halfwit knows that dust is a dead giveaway when it comes to giving an impression of cleanliness. Most people, however, if they are a total bodger, will only bother with eye-level. You want to get up HIGH, do they have an 8-foot bookcase? Get your hand up there and run it along. I bet it’s dustier than a bricklayers back pocket.

4. Lift The Couch Cushions

Let’s face it, this woman probably has antique Chesterfields or something, but if she has a sofa with detachable cushions, lift up the seat pads and take a peek underneath. There could be a multitude of sins hiding under there and only a real domestic goddess would have remembered to vacuum in the nooks and crannies.

5. Turn on the Shower

Limescale. It’s a son of a bitch. We’ve all seen the Barry Scott magic where you spray Cilit Bang on your showerhead and the jets start miraculously coming our straight again, but have you ever actually bothered to do it? Maybe your pal hasn’t either. Turn on her shower. If it sprays you in the face at a 90° angle, she’s limescaled up the wazoo and probably a pretender to the Queen of Clean throne.

So, there you have it. Five surefire ways to make you feel better and to effectively derelict the reputation of your “Wishes She was Nigella/Kim/Aggie rolled into one” pal.

**Disclaimer: There’s a very good chance that if you go around someone else’s home turning their shower on, lifting the couch cushions or scaling their bookcase, you may not remain friends with the for very long. And if you do need to go to these lengths to make yourself feel better, maybe a good look inwards is what you need.

You’re a dirty bitch. Deal with it.

Making Family Chores Fun

may have mentioned once or twice (ahem…) that I’m pretty rubbish at housework. In fact, I’ve found no less than four posts on this very blog, with confessions of slovenliness (hereherehere…and here, just in case you’re interested!). However, since I went back to work, I’ve really stepped up on the housework front. I may still have dusty skirting boards and my mother-in-law may have done my washing up for me about half a dozen times in the last few months, but I have been keeping up with the rest of it!

However, the problem with working and maintaining a decent home is that I still have to find time in the middle of all of that to spend time with Sausage. Fortunately, she’s at that age where she loves to help so I’ve started drafting her in to help with simple tasks, which means that we get to spend time together whilst being productive as well as making the whole thing a lot more pleasant for me.

Here are a few examples of how Sausage has been getting involved:

Sausage loves to help me hang the washing on the line. We make up simple games like getting her to shout out who each item belongs to as I hang it, which is simple but it gets her to use her brain while doing a mundane task.

She’ll often help by passing me the pegs or the wet clothes, or sometimes just keeps me smiling by wrapping herself in the sheets and shouting “COME AND FIND MEEEE!”.

 

Making the beds is a really simple task that Sausage can more or less do by herself, but we have fun doing it together. We flap the duvet around and generally clown about. I’ve come to the conclusion that chores needn’t be done promptly if you’re having fun. The beds will look better in the end and you’ll have enjoyed yourself in the process. Look at Sausage admiring her work in the last picture, pure pride!

 

As I mentioned before, now I’m back at work I have to be more efficient and Husband helped by devising a system to help us get the laundry away. Before, I’d do the washing, it’d get brought in and dumped in a corner where it would stay until each item got reworn. Now, we have three baskets in different

colours, one for each of us, and the washing gets sorted into the baskets. This makes it a lot easier to put away in the respective wardrobe and this sorting has more or less been taken over by Sausage who loves working out whose item is whose and which basket it needs to go into.

 

I HATE WASHING UP. Seriously hate it. So does Husband, which is why between us we end up with a backlog of dishes that need doing and a total of ZERO enthusiasm for doing it. That was, until my little helper got involved! Now, I wash, Sausage stands on her chair and put the clean dishes on the draining board. A minor thing, but it gives us a chance to have a chat, sing, listen to music and spend what has turned out to be some really nice time together.

So, that’s how the Mum’s the Word family make their chores a bit more fun! This post is part of the Morphy Richards Innovator linky over on Tots 100.