Alright guys, thanks for coming back for Day Two of building your Home Management Guide (HMG). If you missed Day One, take a sec to read it here before you go on with this post or things might get confusing.
Day Two is all about rounding out the chore lists and making it into a workable routine.
Yesterday we tackled those things that need attention every day just to make our space livable and reduce frustrations where possible. Day Two is all about those things that need deeper cleaning, but less frequent attention. There are two schools of thought on this: Room Oriented or Task Oriented.
Room-Oriented Cleaning is probably what most people are familiar with. This is a rotation of cleaning one room on a specified day of the week so that each room gets rotated through regularly.
Task-Oriented Cleaning is doing one task per day: for instance, cleaning all the hard floors on Monday and toilets on Tuesday.
I have tried both of these approaches, and I think the best fit is just what works best for your brain combined with the size of your house. We choose to live small around here–think 6 people in right around 1000 square feet, so currently I use the Task-Oriented Cleaning Schedule combined with my Daily Tasks (from Day One) to keep the house looking as clean as possible. Whichever style you choose, keep these things in mind:
- Don’t put all your labor-intensive things on one day unless you have help. This goes for two reasons. Obviously it’s just hard, but also, if something comes up unexpectedly (which it will because life does not care about our schedules) then all your big stuff tends to get pushed off until it’s unbearable.
- Plan ahead. I grocery shop when I pick the big kids up from their Dad’s on Sunday night so they can help me pick out dinners and school snacks, so I make sure I clean out the fridge on Saturdays. That way, when I come home exhausted from grocery shopping, I’m not fighting the fridge to shove new groceries in with last week’s leftovers.
- Make. Your. Kids. Help. Yes, even if they are little. If they can walk, they can help. Teach them young. Trust me. I made this mistake, and now it’s worse than pulling teeth with the big ones. Just, just trust me.
With these things in mind, break your house down into rooms or tasks. Since the room approach is pretty intuitive, I’m going to forge ahead with the Task-Oriented Cleaning Schedule I have.
Our Tasks break down into tasks that happen inside the house vs ones outside.
Basically if I’m out, I’m out. That’s all I’ll be doing. Same applies if I’m sweeping. If I sweep the kitchen, I might as well keep sweeping. It works for me.
After you have your tasks, take into consideration your normal schedule. Make sure you leave room in your life and in these routines for changes. Who knows when track meetings are going to be or when you find your energy constantly drained on some days. Be kind to yourself. Be flexible.
Mondays are transition days for us, getting back into our groove, clearing the weekend fog, etc. Mostly the kids want to veg on technology after school and just been in the house since they spend the weekends away. So Mondays are a slow start for us and our schedule ends up being like this:
Monday-Appointments/Errands for Mom
Tuesday-Outside Cleanup/Lawn Care
Wednesday-Dust & Vacuum Carpeted Floors
Thursday-Sweep & Mop Hard Floors
Friday-Master Bedroom-Kids Clean Rooms-Toilets
Saturday-Clean Out Fridge
Finally we’re at MONTHLY & SEASONAL Tasks. This is where you throw in the details like cleaning the washer & dryer, clearing closets, prepping donations, cleaning mattresses, and changing HVAC filters. List and simply number these 1-?.
Now you have the bones for your tasks.
Arrange the tasks according to what will make your day run smoothest. This takes some figuring out, so I suggest writing/typing it out and putting it in a picture frame so you can mark tasks off with dry erase marker every day and also remove the list to scratch things out and move them around.
You can make it cute after you find your rhythm.
I will say this, once I have a pretty good list going, I do record it in the HMG even though the list I check off daily is on the counter.
My list looks like this:
Make Beds (the kids make their own)
Coffee & Tarot
Put Away Dishes
Put Away Laundry
Wipe Down All Counters (…in the whole house. My grandma taught me that trick and it makes a HUGE difference)
WEEKLY/MONTHLY TASKS (Be sure to leave time for these!) This means during this time, I do errands on Monday, Clean the fridge on Saturday etc. I also work in the Monthly Tasks during this time. My #1 Task is replacing HVAC filters so I do it the first week of the month, #2 is cleaning off the washer & dryer so I do that the second week, etc).
>>>Kids Home From School>>>
Trash to Dumpster
Tidy Living Room, Hall, Kitchen
But trust me this changes.
Whew! We made it. I promise Day Three isn’t nearly as intense. Getting your house sorted to work for your style and your needs is absolutely the most useful part of the HMG, though, and I’m glad you stuck it out with me.
Tomorrow we will be tackling Finances, Birthdays and some odds & ends.