I just worked on the kitchen and made a few discoveries and I wanted to share.
I have been neglecting the kitchen all week, this weekend my son is with Dad, so I had to clean it. I woke up at 8, but stayed in bed not wanting to face it, until hunger pushed me out of bed, and where is food? In the kitchen.
I had a bowl of cherios and almond milk and I decided to time myself. I said "I'll work in the kitchen for 15 min and then take a break"
I got started at a medium pace, not rushing, not sluggish.
I tricked my mind, I said "This is not mykitchen, I am here to help out" :) That mindset helped!
Well, the 15 min were over and I realize:
1) I was almost done! (Not counting cleaning the fridge or floors) Granted I have a dishwasher.
2) The most time consuming task was to put away stuff that Didnt belong in the kitchen (more on this below)
3) There was garbage everywhere, I need a basket where to put garbage at counter level. Funny, because I am very petite, but I dislike leaning towards the garbage and my kitchen is too little for the tall ones.
So I concluded:
- Even after a week of neglect, cleaning the kitchen doesnt really take THAT much time
- I work better if I pretend I am cleaning somebody else's kitchen. Imagine someone is sick and asked for help, or that I am helping at a shelter
- The stuff that didnt belong in the kitchen can be described in 3 overall categories: Toys, Clothing, Paper, Office Supplies. toys and clothing are a mishap, I dont want those items in my kitchen (once it is clean it is back to being my kitchen :-) ) but paper and office supplies happen because I open my mail and go over school papers in the kitchen, because my dining table is full!!! SO, for now I am allowing myself to have paper in the kitchen, I'll get a bin. Usually i woukd go to Target and get a desk organizer, but since I might, maybe not, but might lose my job. I'll see what they have at the dollar store I can use
- I need garbage basket at counter level where garbage can gravitate as I cook and prepare meals, then i can empty that once a day on the real garbage
I also discover that all my mess is alwats in plain view... my cupboards and drawers stay organized. I need to think why that is
What do you think? What changes can you make to make it easier for you. Changes can be on stuff, organizational tools, way you do things, or even mindset!
On the way to a half decent home!
I am the same way, why is that??? I can't stand grime and my house is clean, but many things aren't put away. I leave all sorts of things sitting out and it's as if they become invisible to me after a day and grow roots! A 20-min declutter makes a huge difference because other than that my house is well-organized, but then clutter reappears and I live with it for ages.
and then when we get to the ocean
we're gonna take a boat to the end of the world
I have a small rectangular wicker basket for papers/mail on my ciounter, and some small metal buckets for writting implenents. Once the paper basket is full I go through it and either file papers or throw them out.Other than those things, and a container of kitchen untensils (wooden spoons etc) and my mixer, the counters are bare, My two older children take turns each day to empty the dishwasher and dirty things go in as they are used. My biggest issue is stuff thet needs handwashing. This week I have been making an effort to get that done once a day so it doesn't build up and become overwhelming. Teaching the boys to pick up afterthemselves is an ongoing lesson, but we are getting there.
Baking sheets don't fit in my dishwasher, I have plastic measuring cups which I hand wash, cooling racks. The bowl from my mixer is too large for the dishwasher..... I do a lot of baking and cooking from scratch with my children.
By the way, I got a 11x13 rectangular basket, it works like a charm, thank you for the suggestion!
The paper mess drives me bananas! I can't stand all the papers in my kitchen. Maybe I just need to get rid of my little basket and get a bigger one like the one you describe. Will a pretty one help or just collect more mess??
DD Born 08/08/08 Love my DH! Currently TTC #2.... My blog: thirtythreemom.com.
Searching for balance and happiness in the every day.UPDATE: Found it! It's called GRATITUDE
I DREAD entering the kitchen sometimes... The best part of having my own apartment with DS is I don't have to do the dishes. The worst part of having an apartment for just me and DS is... I don't have to do the dishes. Because it's just us two allll day, and DS freaks whenever we aren't (literally) attached at the hip, I tend to let things go a bit. The mail would probably be all over the place too except that I open my mail on in the bathroom or in the car. That's probably gross to people, I probably just overshared. Anyway, the worst part of the mail is the envelopes. I don't throw them away if the mail is important because I don't think to, but they're really useless to keep. They make the mail mess look 2-3x worse.
mama to (09/11)
What has worked, and really made a difference for me:
The bigger basket really helped, I made a self commitment to go over it once a month.
If that is too much, do it every 2 or 3 months, a small commitment is better than no commitment.
Once a month I go over it : things to act upon, if it is a phone call, I move the number to my planner and trash the paper, unless I need it to make the call.
Things to trashm this is ALWAYS 80% or more of the basket!
Things to file, I go and file
Other things I have only because I need a line or two from the whole paper, store the information, ideally electronically and trash the mail
Anything I would LIKE to do, goes inthe trash, only things I absolutely HAVE to do go into my "things to act upon"
This took a while, but I have started to clean up for me, as an act of love for me.
Try it, clean one little corner,how does that feel?
My son is a sticker on my skin too, I do involve him and he likes it, I give him a rag or even the broom and he "cleans"', we both clean...
My house is still mainly a mess, but it has become a lot better since I started to do this for me, because I want a neat place, even though I never have visitors.
I tell him , I'm doing clean up!
He starts singing the clean up song and starts picking up stuff. Meanwhile I collect garbage around the house, or collect things that go in the kitchen, etc.
It still helps me when I say, 'today, if I do laundry and the dinner table i did enough' I always end up doing a bit more!
Envelops, well, you have identified a problem, they need to be trashed, in the crar, in the bathroom, who cares?! If it works for you, it works for you, I have 2, that is two garbage cans in the car...you found a solution, not a problem!