If you only had 8 hours to declutter/ clean for the most effect, what would you do? I am talking about the whole house including the basement.
I know one of the big things I need to do is take the recycling in. And I will need to make a time at the end of it all for a run to the thrift store. What would your strategy be for getting the most done?
Jenna ~ mommy to Sophia Elise (1/06), Oliver Matthew (7/07) and Avery Michael (3/10)
Wading slowly and nervously into this homeschooling thing.
If it were just for my family, I would focus the 8 hours on one room. Probably the kitchen or living room since that is where we are the most. If you have that one room done, it only takes a few minutes every day to maintain it. That one room keeps you motivated. And will inspire you to move on to tackle room #2.
If the 8 hours was preparing for company, I would shove everything in the closets and drawers! But that is just cleaning, not organizing.
In order to maximize 8 hours of organizing, I would put two big boxes on the table and challenge everyone to help you fill them by finding at least ten things of theirs to donate.
is this 8 hours of uninterrupted (no toddlers!!) cleaning and decluttering? That would give me plenty of time to really deep clean my house (not just dishes and laundry but also cleaning window sills/windows and base boards and fans etc) So I'd probably just make sure everything was REALLY clean and use whatever time I have left to start decluttering. I've been doing a LOT of decluttering lately so I don't have much left but I did start in the spare room which is our storage space as we don't have a basement. It was our worst spot and we wanted it open for an actual guest room. We moved everything that we wanted to take to goodwill out to the sunroom to take to goodwill whenever we had time.
I'd definitely start with making sure everything was clean though. Surfaces cleared off, everything put where it belongs... but like I said, I don't have much to declutter but I always feel like I'm behind on actual cleaning! When my main living space and everything I see all the time is clean and organized though, it makes it easier to get to more hidden things.
Start with the common areas and/or the place your guest will eat and sleep. Then the bathrooms needs to shine and smell fresh. After that, then take out every scrap of trash and recycling. Then, if there's time... buy flowers and bake something yummy to make the house smell good.
Leave the garages and closets for another time unless they have impeded doorways or walkways.
Guests coming or just a day sans kiddos?
For the first, I'd focus on public spaces. Bathroom, living room, kitchen, play space. First make all tolerable, then all really clean. Then in the order living room, kitchen, bathroom, play space, I'd do what I could to make them pretty.
For the second, first I'd do a quick run through of the things that seem to always need to be done (for me, dishes, clearing the living room, sweeping in general) Then I'd start in on whatever area had the most gatherings of miscellaneous items and work on getting them proper homes (including OUT of my home =D )
I had all the kids, unfortunately! :) I only actually got about 6 hours in because DH left for work when I was still asleep. The 3 and 6 yo played all day for the most part.
We were supposed to be getting ready to move, but some things came up that weren't our fault and are beyond our control, so now we don't know if we can make it happen. On top of that disappointment DH's job has been stressful lately and he has been working a lot of O/T. He usually doesn't work weekends but he had to go in for a full day today and might have to go in tomorrow. I just thought I would get a good start on the house so 1) it would look nicer when he came home. 2) Just in case we can get everything worked out and move soon!
I started in the rooom nearest the front door and just started going through everything. I took the sacks for donation out to the car as soon as they were full so the kids weren't taking stuff back out of them! I put my 9 yo in charge of the living room and gave her specific tasks (ex. pick everything up off the floor. When she had that done I gave her another task like pick up all the toys) so she wouldn't get bogged down with not knowing what to do. She did a good job. I also gave her some fun jobs like rolling my yarn into balls so they wouldn't get tangled and would look neater. She helped a lot and she gets to stay the night with Grandma tonight as a reward.
I didn't take the recycling in because they are only open 3 days a week and they aren't open if the weather is really cold because the building isn't heated. Today was the first nice Saturday in a few weeks so I knew they would be PACKED and it would take forever. I will take it in the next day they are open. I did box everything up really nicely so it doesn't look like the recycling bin barfed everywhere! I also shredded a lot of papers and got them off my desk. You can see most of the top now.
I've got 3-4 bags to take to the DAV, a bag of stuff to take to my Grandma, and a pile of stuff that somehow got stored in the house but needs to make it out to the garage. When hubby came home he said, "Wow, much cleaner!" I was surprised because he usually doesn't notice! I also did some dishes and laundry. The only things I allowed myself to store away for later was stuff like photographs that I need to decide if I want to get frames for or if I want to put them in an album. The rest of the stuff I made a decision about now, such as do we keep it, recycle it, donate it or trash it? I feel 20 lbs lighter!
1. Pick up everything off the floor, tables and counters- put in it's right spot
2. Clean the bathroom
3. Wipe down all counters
5. Light a candle, get a glass of wine and relax.
If you had the extra time, straighten up your bed, clean out a closet and sweep off your porch.