Squeaky Clean (mostly) Cleaning System

October 15, 2009

I would like to write a preface to this post.

Preface: The below post is not in any way indicating that my house is spotless every day or that I am some sort of super woman. I have, however, found a system that works for me. I love hearing other peoples’ tips on cleaning, kids and life in general, so here is my two cents.

When we moved into this house we started at ground zero. I had it cleaned before we moved in and after we unpacked and decorated, I sighed… “I really want to keep my house this clean.” I had accepted long ago (after having kids) that my entire house would never be perfectly clean all at once (unless I left with the kids and some else cleaned for me!). As annoying as that fact is, that is our life right now. I have about one hour of semi uninterrupted time during the day at rest time to get un-kid-friendly stuff done. I needed a plan.

I have looked into Fly Lady before, but it was a little intense for me. To many emails, to many rules, too much pressure and I hate wearing shoes inside. I don’t want to be cleaning every day all day and I also didn’t want a stringent schedule that if something came up one day I couldn’t move change stuff around. I stole a little bit from her and came up with my own plan.

First, I decided that floors and bathrooms obviously need to done every week. So Sunday or Monday, is floor and bathroom day. (I do usually have to wipe down the sink and counters at a couple of  times during the week…) My kids love vacuuming so I do that when they are awake and then during naps I mop and clean the bathrooms. Floor day is also, pickup the play room and bedroom time. That is another reason I like to have the kids awake during vacuuming… they are forced get to help pick up. (by the way, if you do not own a steam mop, buy one right now. They are worth every penny and make mopping so so so much easier and less time consuming. I have the Shark.) I also decided that every evening Mike and I would spend about 5-10 minutes picking up, finishing the kitchen, etc. so when we woke up it would be to a fresh start. And when I say 5-10 minutes I mean it. We set the timer and go at lightening speed and then we are done.  It is amazing how much two people can get done in 10 dedicated minutes.

Next I divided my house into four zones a little bit like Fly Lady so each room would get deep cleaned once a month. Tuesday, while Scott is at school, is usually when I do my deep cleaning day because Nate will nap and I will have two hours to power through it. BUT my goal is that the zone for the week will done some time in that week! Here is my deep cleaning check list:

Zone 1: Kitchen and Laundry Room– Let me say, this is my least favorite zone. It is the most time consuming for the least amount of visible pay off.

– dust base boards and molding

– dust ceiling fan

– clean blinds and window sill

– clean out fridge and freezer and clean the shelves and drawers

– dust top of fridge

– sweep behind fridge

– organize and wipe down pantry shelves

– wipe down insides of all cabinets and drawers and de-crumb any silver ware trays etc

– clean fronts of cabinets

– wash high chair cover and deep clean high chair

Laundry Room

– wipe down tops and fronts of washer and dryer

– clean base boards

– organize and clean out “shoe baskets”

– de clutter coat hanger thing

– wipe out cabinets

Zone 2: Living and Play Room

– dust baseboards and mantle

– clean/dust shutters and sills and light fixtures

– wipe down all pictures and decor

– vacuum under couch / chair cushions

– organize movies and dust tv stand cabinets

Play Room

– organize and sanitize all toys

– dust base boards, shutters and light fixtures

– clean french doors

Zone 3: Bedrooms and Master Bath

Bedrooms

– dust all base boards, blinds, and light fixtures

– dust all furniture and clean all decor and pictures

– organize all bedrooms toys

– clean out clothes (if needed)

– organize shoes and closet (in master)

– organize/clean out night stands (master)

Master bath

– dust/clean baseboards and blinds

– clean out/ organize all baskets (ie get rid of any make up, organize hair stuff etc)

Zone 4: Entry, Dining, Hallway and Hall Bath

– dust all base boards and shutters

– organize entry closet

– dust and clean all pictures, decor, and furniture

– organize inside of buffet

– wipe down every inch of every chair (NOT FUN)

Hall Bath

– organize and wipe down insides of all drawers

– organize, throw away expired meds

– organize towels

– organize/clean out all cabinets

So there it is! I know everyone has different rooms than I do but this system has really helped me. My entire house might not all be clean at once BUT it is also never completely gross. Also, I don’t feel like I am constantly cleaning but never getting anything done. I spend two nap times cleaning non stop, it feels so good when I am finished and I actually feel like my house is clean and organized. Just promise me that if you ever come over on the last week of the month, you won’t judge me if you open up my fridge… It will be done the next week!

Tip: I have found that watching a show on Hulu that I don’t really care about helps. It is a little bit of distraction but I don’t care enough about the show that I want to stop and watch. Plus it is on my lap top so I can carry it to each room with me.

I would love to hear any tips any one else has!

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7 Responses to “Squeaky Clean (mostly) Cleaning System”

  1. Martha Says:

    I like to listen to audiobooks, you can download then free from the library http://www.tulsalibrary.org, they have a wide selection (from classics to Twilight) and listen to them on my IPOD while I clean, that way I get my cleaning and my “reading” in. Thanks for the inspiration. Starting Monday!

  2. Carissa Says:

    You’re hard core….GO GIRL! Get that house cleaned. I definitely don’t have a plan but I have cleaning and organizing spurts. I agree though that I feel so much better aboout myself AND my life when my house is cleaned. It is, after all, at stay-at-home mom’s “office.”

    • Cori Says:

      Ha! You crack me up. The only difference between our offices and our husbands is that we don’t have people who come in the night and magically make the dust disappear….. Also we don’t get vacation days.

  3. Faith Says:

    I think you’ve got a fantastic system. We have dedicated days instead of weeks, but a very similar thing.

    The only advice I’d give (& I haven’t been reading your blog long enough to know how old your kids are) is to involve the kids as much as possible. There are so many things even a 2-3 yr old kid can do. The rule in my house is “when Mommy is working, everyone is working (at his/her own level).”

    It makes the chores go slowly for a while, but later it makes your job SO much easier.


  4. […] Continue my cleaning schedule. I really love how organized and on top of things I […]


  5. […] Cleaning Schedule- […]


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