I don’t know about you, but my mood can be totally ruined if my house is messy. With two toddlers in the house, this can be a struggle because, well, kids = mess. Instead of letting my house go because I have kids, I try to keep little routines in place to keep things in order. Today, I’m sharing some tips on how I keep my house clean (most of the time!)
Make your bedThis first one is short, sweet and simple and if you’ve read my post, 8 Steps To An Amazing Day, then you already know I’m a daily bed maker. It only takes a few minutes and it just instantly makes your bedroom look cleaner. My three year old even makes her bed in the morning before we head downstairs.
Start dishwasher every night & unload every morning
Since I started trying to do this daily, it has helped so much with keeping dishes from piling up our kitchen sink. I used to wait until the dishwasher was completely full before I would run it (and to be honest, most days we do use enough dishes to fill the dishwasher) but running it nightly is now part of my evening cleaning routine. I like to empty it first thing in the morning while my coffee is brewing. This little routine has been a life saver with keeping our kitchen clean and tidy. Also an added bonus, running your appliances at night saves money on your energy bill!
Keep countertops clean and clear
Speaking of ways to keep the kitchen clean and tidy, this tip helps with that, too. Clear all clutter from your kitchen countertops. (Appliances, mail, cereal boxes.. whatever it may be!) Keep your daily essentials out, of course — you do have to LIVE in your house, after all. Just try to find a place for everything. For example, mail seems to be a source of clutter for most people. We solved this by making a family command center in our kitchen and adding a hanging mail folder. This helps keep our mail in one place and off the counters. You can find so many great family command center ideas on Pinterest! Here’s ours:
Another tip that piggy backs off this one is to clean as you go. Have your kids clean up as they move from one activity to another. Also, clean up as you cook. You can also wipe down bathroom sink counters before you walk out of the bathroom. If I wipe something off the kitchen counter with a paper towel, I sometimes go ahead and wipe in the corners of the kitchen floors under the cabinets before I throw away that paper towel. (food and who knows what else always collects there, yuck.)
Stay on top of laundry
This one is easier said than done, right? But once you get into a good routine, it really isn’t hard to stay on top of laundry. There is no reason to have clothes piled up around your house, dirty or clean. (I admit, my weakness is moving dry clean clothes to my bed and then leaving the room like… bye!) I like to throw a load of laundry in the washer first thing in the morning before I go downstairs and I always try to move it to the dryer right after the wash cycle is done. I also try to just take a few minutes and get clothes folded as soon as they come out, depending on what other chaos is going on in our house.
I used to do laundry literally every day but we just recently got a new washer and dryer and they are so huge that I can wait until it gets about 3/4 full with dirty clothes before I run it. I was actually able to wash my entire family’s laundry from vacation in one load. Crazy. I love that washer so much. I have a post about my Laundry Closet Mini Makeover where I linked our new washer and dryer.
Floors.. Ugh, the floors
The floors in our home are, honestly, an ongoing battle. Spot cleaning daily is a must. This goes for the bathrooms, too. I keep a container of clorox wipes in each bathroom to use on everything in there, including the floor sometimes. As far as the rest of the floors in our house, I sweep and vacuum our main living areas on the days that we are home. On top of my quick little vacuum run I do, we have a Roomba vacuum that we have for our downstairs living area. I was pretty skeptical about it at first, mainly because it just seemed to bump into everything and it’s a little loud on the hardwood floors. But after I thought I had cleaned the floors really well myself one day, that little robot came back and docked after cleaning for about an hour and it had dirt in it! So it found dirt that I had missed. Embarrassing! That’s okay though, I’ve learned to embrace the help Roomba offers. It gets underneath furniture that I simply can’t at this point in my pregnancy. #teamwork
I also have an awesome Bissell steam mop that I use once Roomba and I tackle sweeping the floors. I steam mop about once a week, depending on how much we’ve been home and what kind of food has been thrown onto the floors.
Put things where they belong the first time
This last tip has also been a game changer for me and it applies to literally everything you do, every day. I’ve also heard it called the “one touch rule”. When you get home and take off a jacket, hang it up in the closet or wherever it’s “home” is. Instead of laying it over the back of the couch and then having to hang it up later, anyway, just put it away the first time. This goes for dishes, shoes, folded clothes, dirty clothes (get them to that hamper, husband!).. literally everything. Of course there will be busy days or lazy days where we are a little more laid back and we just tidy everything up later in the evening. That’s ok, too. The biggest thing is making sure everything has a “home”. If it doesn’t, you may need to clear out some old things in closets, etc to make room for the things you always use.