or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Natural Living › The Mindful Home › Houskeeping-- What is acceptable/not acceptable?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Houskeeping-- What is acceptable/not acceptable?

post #1 of 90
Thread Starter 
There is another thread on this board that has a few post regarding cleanliness and CPS that just scares me. I don't consider my home so bad that my kids should be removed, but from the descriptions in those posts, maybe others would have a different idea.

(by acceptable, I mean that you would allow your kiddo to go over for a play date, without crinkling your nose, or coming on MDC to chat about it)What do you consider acceptable in terms of:


Laundry? (clean but in baskets, left in the dryer, on the couch for days waiting to be put away...)
Floors? (crumbs, or clothes on the floor in bedrooms, toys on the floor, spots on a kitchen floor).
Dishes? (dirty in the sink for how long, clean but not put a way, dishes left in the living room or a night stand...)
closets? How cluttered can they be? stuffed, or tidy and usable?
Bathrooms?
General clutter? kitchen table, dresser, counters?
windows, baseboards etc?, how often would you expect them to be cleaned? how dirty is too dirty.

I can't think of anything else, but please include if you have any other dealbreakers.
post #2 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by texmati View Post
Laundry? (clean but in baskets, left in the dryer, on the couch for days waiting to be put away...)
Floors? (crumbs, or clothes on the floor in bedrooms, toys on the floor, spots on a kitchen floor).
Dishes? (dirty in the sink for how long, clean but not put a way, dishes left in the living room or a night stand...)
closets? How cluttered can they be? stuffed, or tidy and usable?
Bathrooms?
General clutter? kitchen table, dresser, counters?
windows, baseboards etc?, how often would you expect them to be cleaned? how dirty is too dirty.
Laundry - I don't like laundry left around in the living room. Wouldn't stop me from letting my kids play but would annoy me in my own home. Clean laundry is at least put away in the appropriate bedroom, even if it doesn't make it's way into the drawers.

Floors - I clean up any crumbs straight away, as well as spilled food. Probably wouldn't want my child playing where food has been left on the floor. Toys are put away two or three times a day here.

Dishes - A days worth of dirty dishes and drying dishes is acceptable to me. Maybe that's because I don't have a dishwasher and hate doing dishes though!

Closets - I don't care about. Out of sight out of mind is my motto!

Bathrooms - I wipe down the vanity every night and try to do a proper clean once a week. If the toilet has stains or anything I will clean them off straight away.

General clutter - I keep surfaces clear and make sure I clear them off totally at least once a day. Wouldn't bother me if someone else didn't.

Windows etc - I do VERY infrequently. I should do them more but they end up covered in finger prints about five minutes later so I've kind of given up . Baseboards and windowsills? If there's visible dirt or dust they need to be cleaned, but once again I only do them like twice a year!
post #3 of 90
In my home, if the dishes are rinsed, the trash is out and the bathrooms are clean, I'm cool.

Laundry - Clean laundry is always in the bedrooms, but maybe not in the drawers.

Floors - I keep floors decent. Never leave any crumbs or messes. Vaccuming is done once a week.

Dishes - There are often rinsed dishes in my sink. I don't stress over every little detail. But my kitchen always smells good and the counters are clear and shiny.

Closets - I could care less about. Closets are for stashing clutter 'til u get around to it.

Bathrooms - I must have clean bathrooms at all times. I check and wipe down surfaces just about every time I'm in there.

General clutter - I keep surfaces as clear as possible. Makes all the difference. But I kinda enjoy some clutter in others' homes. It makes it comfy and shows the owner's personality.

Windows etc - I hardly ever do.

Baseboards and windowsills? If I see something dirty, I'll swipe them.

IMO, Unacceptable in others' homes: Funk, nasty bathrooms, nasty floors, trash everywhere, any kind of animal excrement on the floors.
post #4 of 90
My house is much cleaner without a baby! Somehow I just can't keep up as well as I'd like.

Clean laundry in baskets is fine, though it drives me crazy when I can't find time to put it away. I try to pick up dirty clothes from the floor every time I find them.

A day of dishes in the sink is ok, as long as they are mostly rinsed.

Windows constantly have dog nose prints and kid finger prints. Oh well. They sure do look nice when they are clean for 5 minutes.

Baseboards I do once a month or whenever they get nasty. Dogs contribute to this.

We scoop the 2 litter boxes 1-2 times a day and immediately clean up any poo that has landed outside the box. The litter boxes are in a gated off back room where we have things stored in tubs with lids and our bookshelves.

I think it's difficult to keep a small house clean with babies and pets. It's impossible for my white kitchen floor to not have a few dirty spots! I vacuum the entire house almost daily, and spot clean the floor between mopping every 1-2 weeks.

The bathroom always seems dirty too, but I try to keep the counter wiped down and gross spots out of my toilet. I deep clean it once a week or so.

I'm fine with a house looking lived in as long as it isn't down right nasty, smelly, or filthy.
post #5 of 90
Honestly, I feel like the other poster in other thread had exaggarated quite a bit. Maybe she wasn't but I have had a CPS coming in my home unexpectedly before for a situation not related to tidiness. CPS asked if she could investigate my whole house and she said my house was acceptable and safe enough for our children. She found nothing hazardous.

I had some dirty dishes in my sink.
Some toys on the living room floor.
My dd's room was kinda messy with toys and her clothes on floor.
The laundry room had clothes waiting to be washed and the cat litter box had some lumps in it.
One bedroom was used for storage.
Bathrooms was in need of some cleaning.

The entire house was chlid-proofed.

Maybe some locations are more stricter than the others. I don't know.
post #6 of 90
Thread Starter 
I guess I'm not worried about cps exactly, thank god, but I think my idea of what is normal I think is very skewed.

Our floor and counters have food crumbs or spots on them. They do not get wiped/swept/vacuumed everyday. Our bedrooms/bathrooms have clothes on the floor. about half the closets are not usable. (for example, you can't walk into our walk in master closet.). At least one seat on my sofa has stuff on it at any given time. Our clean clothes are in baskets in the master bedroom. I've always been messy, but things have gotten much worse since I went back to work after DS (maybe around 4 months, and then again when I got pregnant around 7-8 mos).

I just didn't realize that everyone with kids didn't live this way.
post #7 of 90
Laundry? I prefer that dirty is in the hamper (my 9 year old doesn't understand this one!) and clean is put away. There's a basket next to the fireplace waiting to be folded, but it's not killing me that it's there.

Floors? Main living area/kitchen/dining room, I expect spotless. Vacuumed every day at least. Kid's rooms, full cleaning once a week, cleaned up before bed, vacuumed at least a few times a week.

Dishes? Never left anywhere but the dishwasher. I hate a messy kitchen and can't relax if there's a mess in my kitchen.

Closets? Ummm, they are messy. I try, but I'm so damn busy keeping up my other insane standards that I don't ever get to them. But they aren't in my line of vision all day like everything else so I don't much care.

Bathrooms? Wiped down daily, floor every few days and shower cleaned once a month. My bathroom gets cleaned less because I don't pee all over the damn place.

General clutter? Dining room table is our clutter spot. I go through it every few days and toss/file/straighten. I hate it. Counters and the rest of the tables are clear. The rest of the clutter either goes back to the kid's rooms or in the trash.

It sounds like my house would be really clean, but it's still not up to my standard. My family doesn't like me when it is as clean as I like it, so i live within a range of happy for all of us.
post #8 of 90
My ex called CPS on me vindictively when we separated.

They showed up and my house was not filthy, not cluttered etc, but the woman wanted to create a case for investigation so I was faulted for clean laundry in the dryer
litter box in need of scooping (I did it twice a day)
a 'white substance' on the carpet (baking soda- I'd sprinkled to freshen and was just about to vacuum)

I was bullied and threatened and they *did* take my child in that moment. I had her back by nightfall- and I was issued an apology eventually, but it was a terrible experience, and my house really was not a mess- in any way, shape or form.
post #9 of 90
what i do in my own home isn't what i expect other families to do. and depending on my mood some stuff in my house isn't how i would like it.
all of what you mentioned wouldn't bug me at all in a friends house. it isn't what i do at my house, but i could care less if that is what happens at someone else's house.
something that would bug me... infested with spiders! lol other then that, i don't really care. i have friends who are super super neat and some that are not. it isn't something i spend alot of time thinking about.


h
post #10 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by texmati View Post
I guess I'm not worried about cps exactly, thank god, but I think my idea of what is normal I think is very skewed.

Our floor and counters have food crumbs or spots on them. They do not get wiped/swept/vacuumed everyday. Our bedrooms/bathrooms have clothes on the floor. about half the closets are not usable. (for example, you can't walk into our walk in master closet.). At least one seat on my sofa has stuff on it at any given time. Our clean clothes are in baskets in the master bedroom. I've always been messy, but things have gotten much worse since I went back to work after DS (maybe around 4 months, and then again when I got pregnant around 7-8 mos).

I just didn't realize that everyone with kids didn't live this way.
Speaking for myself, this would drive me absolutely bonkers. Not as the parent of one of our children's playmates, mind you, but as someone who had to live there.

Food attracts vermin and also smells bad, which would bother me. I don't vacuum every day but it takes about 4 seconds to wipe the crumbs off the kitchen counter or blot them up with a damp paper towel or dish rag. Same for things like drabs of mustard or greasy little handprints. If you take care of it right after it happens, it never gets overwhelming. You just have to get into the habit of doing it right then (which is also a valuable skill to teach kids).

Unusable closets--what's the point? I would go in there one Saturday and pull out everything. Then I'd start cataloguing things for a garage sale or a charitable donation. Why keep stuff around if it's cluttering your closets? Obviously you're not using it, so it shouldn't be in the house. Or if it's something you want to store long-term (like heirlooms and such) then you could store it in cheap Rubbermaid bins labeled with masking tape and Sharpie. But just having a bunch of junk piled in closets...no, no, no ack I'm getting anxious just thinking about it!

The clean clothes would bother me because why can't they go into the proper drawers just as easily as a basket? But that's not a hygiene issue like the food or cluttered closets. The sofa seat being occupied would annoy me because I hate clutter but again, not a huge deal as long as it's not something dangerous or gross.

I guess for me, the real dealbreakers would be filth versus mess. Filth is old food, pet feces and urine, months or years' worth of pet hair, nasty bathrooms, mold and mildew, roaches/mice/rats, etc. Mess is just a bunch of random stuff that's not where it belongs. One is unacceptable and I wouldn't let my child play around it; the other is not really my business or problem (but would still drive me insane in my own home).

As for CPS...I'm a cynic, I guess. I feel like no matter how clean your house is, if CPS has it in for you, they're going to find a reason. Certainly not being a slob helps, but I don't think being tidy makes you immune from CPS harassment if you get someone who really wants to make you miserable.
post #11 of 90
[QUOTE=peainthepod;15943527]
Food attracts vermin and also smells bad, which would bother me. I don't vacuum every day but it takes about 4 seconds to wipe the crumbs off the kitchen counter or blot them up with a damp paper towel or dish rag. Same for things like drabs of mustard or greasy little handprints. If you take care of it right after it happens, it never gets overwhelming. You just have to get into the habit of doing it right then (which is also a valuable skill to teach kids).

post #12 of 90
Laundry? Mine is either put in baskets or put away- this is my weakest area, really. If it is in baskets though, the basket is on top of the dryer waiting to go be put away, and everything is folded.
Floors? I have kids on the floor constantly. They have to be clean enough to eat off of because- really- they are. So many toys go from the floor to the mouth to the floor to the mouth that I clean them at least daily.
Dishes? No more than a meal's worth in the sink. I try to keep the clean dishes cleared out of the dishwasher, but if i don't get to it right away, I rinse and put dishes in the sink until I can transfer them to the dishwasher.
closets? I clear them out as much as possible. The closet in the master bedroom is full, but that's the only one and that holds *everything* I can't find a better place for. I need to go through it and toss stuff.
Bathrooms? Cleaned daily. I can't *stand* a dirty bathroom.
General clutter? All surfaces must be clear or almost clear. Visual clutter makes me feel claustrophobic.
windows, baseboards Ugh- windows- I need to do more often, same with baseboards. I get to them maybe once a month?

I can't think of anything else, but please include if you have any other dealbreakers.[/QUOTE]
post #13 of 90
I wouldn't care if someone's clean laundry was out. I stash mine in the master bedroom personally, but it rarely gets folded the day it's washed.

I hate crumbs on the floor and on the counter, so I do sweep at least under the table everyday and wipe down the counters, table and chairs.

I don't bat an eye when a few toys are lying around. I usually try to gather them up and put them at the bottom of the stairs to be carried up, but with kids, toys are always getting moved around. Dirty clothes on the floor bother me. I must toss them into a basket in the laundry room.

Dishes get washed the same day or at least rinsed and ready to put in the dishwasher. I don't like dirty dishes strewn around the kitchen. It feels much better when they're all by the sink waiting to be washed.

I try to keep closets somewhat organized, but it's a constant battle. I try to do a major straightening at least once a month.

Bathrooms are deep cleaned at least every other week. During the week, I wipe down the counters if they've gotten yucky (don't like toothpaste, hair and water spots all over the place). Same with toilet, I'll swish it if it needs it.

I've got a couple clutter zones. They bug me and I'm always trying to tame them, but the end of my counter is a paper magnet!

I'm a little weird about baseboards (my own personal thing), but I do wipe them down in the bathrooms when I clean them and every other month or so, I try to wipe down the ones in the rest of the house. My house growing up had years of nasty stuff on them to the point that they couldn't be cleaned even if we'd wanted to. I don't want mine to get that way.


So, these are all my personal standards and I don't really project them on to other people. The only thing that would make me a little reluctant would be clearly unsanitary bathrooms and kitchens.
post #14 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamaofthree View Post
what i do in my own home isn't what i expect other families to do. and depending on my mood some stuff in my house isn't how i would like it.
all of what you mentioned wouldn't bug me at all in a friends house. it isn't what i do at my house, but i could care less if that is what happens at someone else's house.
something that would bug me... infested with spiders! lol other then that, i don't really care. i have friends who are super super neat and some that are not. it isn't something i spend alot of time thinking about.


h
Same here. There's a lot of room between my personal standards and what I would find "unacceptable" for a friend's house. As long as it's a friendly, loving home and there aren't feces or vermin around, I'm cool with my kids playing at a messy house.
post #15 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by texmati View Post

Laundry?dirty is suposed to all go in the laundry pile in the basement and is 90%of the time. clean is often in baskets , but washed and dried, just not put away
Floors? washed /vacuumed everyday. Still never seems clean enugh, but done everyday, with steam cleaner and vacuum
Dishes? usually a days worth rinsed but dirty in sink/beside(no dishwasher)
closets? mostly usable, making good use of tupperware bins
General clutter? big problem with that, I usually have some paper/clutter around my desk area, until filing
windows, baseboards seasonal....only a few times pert year.
With my house having no garbage inside, next to no dirty clothes, clean fed children , my kids were removed by the equivalent of cps. They said clutter alone was unacceptable, one comment was actually I had too much furniture in my living room(hodge podge since I am pretty poor and had two armoire type things in the living room to store electronics and toys and one dresser to store diaper/toiletry baby needs(with three kids I had in diapers at the time. So not only did they have a problem with clutter, but my decorating! (Which mind you, not perfect but functional and the best we could do)

Granted the kids got returned in a week, but that was a very very very long week. So I never feel like my house is good enough now.
post #16 of 90
I think the issue is that there really is little recourse if you are targetted for some reason or another.

Also, some places, CPS will fabricate things to create evidence should they need it later. One claim they fabricated against us was that dd had head lice. They did not know that her grandfather is an entomologist. Furthermore, I took her *that day* to a pediatrician to be checked, and she was also cleared of them there.

I think that in the VAST majority of cases it is fair and reasonable, and it is better to err on the side of caution but if you find someone on a power trip, you just have to jump through the hoops.
post #17 of 90
Quote:
Originally Posted by texmati View Post
Laundry? (clean but in baskets, left in the dryer, on the couch for days waiting to be put away...)
Floors? (crumbs, or clothes on the floor in bedrooms, toys on the floor, spots on a kitchen floor).
Dishes? (dirty in the sink for how long, clean but not put a way, dishes left in the living room or a night stand...)
closets? How cluttered can they be? stuffed,
or tidy and usable?
Bathrooms?
General clutter? kitchen table, dresser, counters?
windows, baseboards etc?, how often would you expect them to be cleaned? how dirty is too dirty.

I can't think of anything else, but please include if you have any other dealbreakers.
Everything I highlighted is our house to a T.
Bathroom- I wipe out the sink when it is grungy and keep floor clean...often cluttered with bath tub toys etc though.
Any flat surface is fair game for stuff...no matter how hard we try stuff covers things...tables, shelves etc.
Windows....hmmm spring cleaning time
Baseboards...if I see something I wipe it

I don't sweat the small stuff.
I live by my apron "A clean house is a sign of a wasted life"
post #18 of 90
It is interesting what is "normal". I think my home, in comparison to homes I read about, would be deemed spotless and yet, I often feel like it isn't clean enough. I think it's all about perspective - what you grew up with, what you prefer, priorities, etc.
post #19 of 90
Good lord, some of you are pretty strict!

At this moment, I have...

-2 loads of clean laundry on the sofa, all folded but not put away
-dinner dishes on the counter
-kitchen floor is a little spotty and a little crumbly from dinner. I typically sweep once a day
-toys are on the floor in the family room
-my sewing stuff is strewn all over the dining room (which we don't actually use, its my craft area)
-bathrooms are reasonably clean
-Kitchen is almost spotless (if you don't consider the dirty dishes from dinner, which was a half hour ago)
-Garbage and recycling are taken out
-Closets are neat

In my defence, or maybe I should say proudly... I homeschool both kids, do the majority of the housework, and we were away all long weekend (Cdn Thanksgiving), got back late yesterday, and were out doing school stuff all day. I haven't been able to catch up.

It would take ALOT to make my radar go up if I was in someone else's house and they were messy. I would have to notice ancient stains/spills that were never wiped, piles of crumbs on the floor, evidence of mice/cockroaches, and a general bad smell of the house that never goes away before I'd be leary.
post #20 of 90
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by limabean View Post
Same here. There's a lot of room between my personal standards and what I would find "unacceptable" for a friend's house. As long as it's a friendly, loving home and there aren't feces or vermin around, I'm cool with my kids playing at a messy house.
yeah... I guess I'm kind of wondering what you find unacceptable at a friends house.


I had an aunt growing up whose house was always dirty. Like, I don't want to use the bathroom here dirty. I never thought I would get that bad, but my bathroom kind of looks like that now.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: The Mindful Home
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Natural Living › The Mindful Home › Houskeeping-- What is acceptable/not acceptable?