Sunday, January 3, 2010

How to Clean Your House in an Hour

If you know me in real life you would laugh at the idea I’m doing a post on house cleaning.

I hate to clean. Seriously hate it. I used to avoid it at all costs. My former roommate once told me I at least needed a path in my bedroom.

It was that bad.

I am somewhat reformed now. Not all the way, but a lot better. Our house is lived in, but we almost always have a pretty clean kitchen and clothes to wear. And the clothes usually come out of a drawer or the closet and not the dryer.

The first thing I learned was to make it easy on myself. I store basic cleaning supplies in each bathroom and the kitchen. Usually just a role of paper towels and some multi-purpose spray cleaner. If I leave to get those things I inevitably get distracted and forget I was cleaning the bathroom.

I have learned to clean fast. I don't want to spend my whole day cleaning, there are much more fun things to do. I wipe down the bathrooms every day. I try to do it while I'm in there anyway and since I do it daily it takes only a minute or two tops. I spray down any spots on the mirror, the counter tops, the toilet bowl and squirt a little soap in the toilet bowl. I swish the soapy water around the toilet, wipe up everything else and I'm done. Missing spots doesn't really concern me since I'm going to be back doing it tomorrow anyways.

You know the days you'd rather just sit on the couch rather than clean? I have those all the time and sometimes I totally give in. Usually I can get my butt up long enough to do something during the commercials. I can unload one rack in the dishwasher during one set of commercials. At the end of single TV show my kitchen is presentable.

I try to get all of my weekly cleaning done in one big spurt. The key is to get my husband and son out of the house for an hour or so. If I haven't been doing this regularly it takes longer.

The first thing I do is run pull my hair back, put on some running shoes turn on the music. I move when I clean.

The next thing is to run around the house and do a general pick up. Throw out magazines, put the toys away, get the dishes off the nightstand. Since we have two floors I finish one before going to the other. Instead of running every item up or down the stairs to its home I just throw stray items in a laundry basket and take them all up at once. I try to restrict picking up and putting away to 5 minutes upstairs and 5 downstairs.

Next I dust. This is does not mean getting out Pledge and polishing all the wood surfaces. I grab a feather duster and race around the house. My goal is to be done in 10 minutes or less.

Then I do the floors. I vacuum everything carpets, hardwoods and tile floors. I do not move any furniture, I just run it around the middle of the room. (The only exception is the kitchen.) My goal is 10 minutes or less.

Next comes mopping. I use a spray bottle and microfiber mop. I spray the microfiber cloth to dampen it, spot spray any stuck on dirt in the kitchen and then fly around the house with it. My kitchen takes 15 minutes total. (Move chairs, vacuum, mop, move chairs back.) The rest of the house is 5-10 minutes.

If I have some more time I vacuum the stairs, this only takes a couple of minutes.

All said and done my major cleaning is done in less than an hour a week and it doubles as a workout. In order to get it done that fast I have to focus only on cleaning and keep on moving. I also have to recognize that it won't be perfect, it's just going to be good enough.

1 comment:

  1. I hate cleaning, too. HATE it. It just seems such an overwhelming chore. I wonder if getting your celiac under control helped you have the motivation to race around and get it all done fast? I'm so tired most of the time when I'm eating gluten--just so tired. I'm off now, hopefully for good, so let's keep our fingers crossed that in a couple weeks I'll have the energy to dust in ten minutes!


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