Are you overwhelmed by household chores? Too often I hear people say there is not enough time in the day. They can’t get everything done around the house with kids around. The little kids are always in the way or destroy what you just worked on. I can definitely understand this mindset. When I was serving in the Air Force, my wife was working full time and always traveling, 5 kids around the house, working on a college degree, and trying to find time for family, you can definitely feel like there is no time to clean the house. Of course, being retired now, I have a lot more free time than before. This does not mean that chores were not done around the house before.
There are some chores that are a never ending battle and have to be done on a daily basis, for instance: trash, laundry, and dishes. These are chores that never stop and have to be done every single day. During the weekend is when we would take care of most of the chores that just had to be done to take care of the house and keep it organized: vacuuming, making bed, dusting, deep cleaning, etc. There were points where it would take 6 – 8 hours of your day, you know, a job. Most of the time you were doing this cleaning after kids went to bed as well. I know this feeling, been there, done that, didn’t like it. Here are a few things I have learned along the way and maybe it will help you out.
- Kids can do chores too! If you have kids above the age of 4, they can help in more than just picking up their toys. Start small. In our house, if you can create the mess, then you can pick up the mess just as easy. Kids want to help out, make it a fun game. Sometimes they are slow and sometimes they don’t do it right, but they want to help and want to look for the next thing to work on. Start with cleaning rooms, dusting, taking out small portions of trash. Eventually they will proceed to dishes, vacuuming, folding laundry, making beds, and more as they get older.
- Even if you have told your kids the same chores and shown them how to do them time and time again, they will still need to be reminded. This includes telling the same child the same chore and how to do it every day, 365 days a year, for 9+ years. If you have a teenager in the home, then you know exactly what I am talking about. Even if you set alarms, have calendar events, tell them earlier in the day, tell them later in the day, you will still have to remind them. It can become exhausting, but it will help keep that house clean if you can stay on top of them and continue to teach them when they are young.
- Creating a schedule helps out tremendously. My kids all know what days their chores are and what has to be done at each portion of the day. Does it get done every time? Absolutely not, but that’s why they are kids and we are parents. We have to remind them. Believe me though, if you have your kids help you out with chores, while you are doing them, then you will accomplish more.
So, I have created a little schedule and am providing time frames on how long each chore takes. I have a 6 bedroom home (technically 5 now because I converted one of the rooms into a walk in closet) with 2 1/2 bathrooms. So, there are a lot of rooms to clean. I found out by breaking down each room into a day, I was able to accomplish a lot more around the home. Hope this helps. Dishes, laundry, and trash are everyday things in my house.
This is our deep cleaning day, mostly it is chores for the kids with parental assistance.
- (30 minutes) After Breakfast – dishes get unloaded and breakfast dishes get loaded by anyone above the age of 10. Table and counters get wiped off as well.
- (30 minutes) After Lunch – dishes get loaded from lunch. Table and counters get wiped off.
- (30 minutes) After Dinner – Oldest kid loads dishes and starts dishwasher, then wipes down table and countertops.
- (30 – 60 minutes) All bathrooms get a deep cleaning. Send the oldest kids off on this journey (8 years and older can do this, having a parent or teenager around to assist is a must). Dedicate about 30 minutes – 1 hour for each bathroom depending on how much needs to be cleaned.
- (30 minutes – all day) Every kid cleans their room completely, this means everything gets put away in the appropriate place. This can last between any portion of time of the day depending on how your kid behaves, but let them do the cleaning. There will be a lot of playing as well, just pop in and remind them to keep on track.
- Every kid strips their beds and makes them again. All dirty clothes and sheets get taken to laundry room.
As I said, this can take a long portion of the day if you decide to clean the entire house.
- (30 minutes) Strip Master Bed and remake. This takes very little time. I always thought it was such a long chore to do. Once I timed this, I realized how quick this really was. This is taking all sheets off, putting new sheets on, even putting on a new sheet for the down comforter (this always takes me a long time), and putting on 13 pillows. This is such an easy task to do once a week.
- (15 minutes) Dust furniture and vacuum room. It actually takes about 15 minutes to vacuum each room, so you can vacuum kid’s rooms as well if they are picked up.
- All trash cans emptied out and brought to big trash can, then trash can brought to curb (Tuesday is trash day.) Little kids can help with emptying small trash cans.
- (10 minutes) Make Master Bed. It takes less than 10 minutes to make a bed that is nice and ready to sleep in. Do this everyday.
- (45 minutes) Vacuum stairwell and downstairs living room. This includes moving most of the furniture that is easy to move and vacuuming under them.
- ( 1 hour) Vacuum dining room and kitchen. Then mop floor.
- (1 hour) The night before make sure your kids have everything off of the floor before bed. Then you can vacuum every room.
Friday’s are a great day for having company or doing special activities with the family. Since you have cleaned every room of the house, this day is dedicated to just doing some spot touch ups around the house.
- (1 hour) Move everything off of the kitchen counters and do a deep cleaning.
As you can see, the things that are not daily chores only take an hour or two a day. If your home is anything like mine, you will be constantly running laundry, dishes are required every night, and trash is emptied every time a trash can gets filled. The more often these chores are done over time, the faster and easier they get. In the begging these chores will seem to take up a lot more of your time than you think, then they become second nature and you will have a well organized and clean home. Hope this helps keep your home a little more organized and clean when you feel like you don’t have time.