I’ve always been a cleaner. After being forced to do chores as a kid, I became a little obsessive about keeping things clean. But now I have a six month old who needs 100% of my attention! Cleaning the house gets put on the back burner. But we’ve come up with some tips I want to share about keeping everything clean (or at least mostly)
Foundation of my cleaning obsession
Most kids hate chores. I definitely started off as one of those kids. I totally resented my weekly chores of dusting, polishing, and Windex-ing the house. But then I grew up and moved out, and I appreciated all the practice and tricks I’d learned!
My first apartment was kept pretty clean. With the shedding from Elliot, I ended up vacuuming nearly every day, cleaned the kitchen once every two weeks, and cleaned the bathroom once a week. In general, I’m not a messy girl, although I do leave my clothes around the house. (That’s one thing I’m thankful for – a husband who doesn’t mind picking up after me!) But whenever I’d visit my husband-to-be, I had to help do his dishes and clean the bathroom. He was usually messier than me!
But now that we are married, we’ve come up with some ways that we can keep our house (mostly) cleaned, especially with four pets and a six month old!
1. Come up with tasks for each partner
If each of you has specific chores to get done, you don’t have to worry about doing it all yourself! I used to have to do everything on my own. It was hard for me to share tasks, but I knew that I just didn’t have enough time in the day to get it done!
So I had to relinquish some tasks to Matty. He now does the laundry on Mondays, make the bed, goes through our mail, and makes meals when he is home. Matty is very helpful! I still have to be the one to do dishes because my way is the best way (ha!).
2. Assign days to tasks and don’t over-complicate the task
If you try to get everything done in one day, it probably won’t get done. I know personally that with a six month old that almost always requires being held, I can’t just get my chores done in one day. It’s just too hard! So I split everything up throughout the week. It helps me feel more accomplished throughout the day, too, to be able to check things off my checklist.
I also try to keep my chores simple. Again, the reason being that if a chore takes too long, Mason gets upset with the repetition. I make sure to clean the bathroom when I can have Matty watch Mason for 30 minutes, fold the laundry when Mason is distracted enough, etc. This way, I also don’t get frustrated if I have to stop what I’m doing to put Mason down for a nap or feed him. Because the simpler the task, the faster I will get done!
3. Reward yourself for getting things done
If all you get to look forward to after getting something done is being tired or just having to keep going doing chores, there’s little motivation for it. So give yourself a little treat or some kind of reward for getting your tasks done!
When I was younger and I was asked to clean my room, I used to set up my blocks around the room and play while I cleaned. I would go from “station” to “station” and clean up the area where my blocks were. It took me a while, but eventually my room would be clean and I got to play while I was at it.
Now that I’m a big girl, my treats have evolved to food treats or just alone time. I love taking my dogs outside and taking Mason on walks or just out on the town. So I give myself a time frame to get things done and then I get to go out and do those things. And it’s an extra treat that I’ll be coming home to a clean house!
I hope these tips have helped!