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How do you get it all done??

697 Views 17 Replies 16 Participants Last post by  kerc
Does anyone have any sort of system, chart, method etc, for getting all the housework done?

My dh will help with a lot of things, but mostly just when things get really bad around the house - or if we have to do the "OMG someone's coming over in an hour" cleaning! He's also on-call 24/7 for his job (beyond his normal 9-5) and my job is much less stressful. I don't mind doing more than 1/2 of the workload at home.

But have such a hard time getting the day to day stuff done - like the dishes, laundry, and vacuuming. I've experimented with weekly or daily charts, and even wrote a list of how long things actually take so when I felt overwhelmed I could see "Well, throwing in another load of laundry will really only take 6 minutes... I can do that next commercial break!"

Nothing ever works for very long though, and then I feel like we're just drowning.

Oh, BTW - I tried the Flylady thing, and that's just not for me. (I sound like a hopeless case, huh!)
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Getting all the housework done?

It is vitally important that we have company once every three months or so. Otherwise parts of my house disappear under heaps of crud, never to be seen again. As it is now, I only have a faint recollection of what my dining room looks like.

I do take care of the dishes pretty well because I just can't stand to have dirty ones in the sink. But the rest of it is a huge struggle, and dh is pretty good about helping.

We have a dog who once bit someone (long story). Because of her, I wouldn't feel comfortable having cleaning help in, even though I am 99.99% sure nothing would happen. But when she goes to her reward, I'm getting a cleaning service ASAP. I still don't know when we'll pick up, but maybe the pressure of having the cleaners come will help.
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Getting ALL the housework done?
How does that happen?

I have tried Flylady and sorta do it. I whine too much so that really isn't the system for me. I love summer as I load up my big kids with shores everyday since they decided not to have summer activities so they could goof off. <yeah right>

I try to do a little bit every day, but at no point is my house ever ALL done. Some done? Sure. Pretty well done? yup- when properly motivated.

However, as soon as I do one thing, the kids undo something else. DH is next to no help. I am very pregnant and just don't care

I had a cleaning lady for a few months and it didn't help. I figure I will have a clean house when the kids are grown and DH is dead.
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Yeah- I love that about company. I do use a weekly chart (like bathroom on tues, kitchen on weds, pay bills on thurs, fri for dust, sweep, mop and vacume, etc) mainly so I can devote about a half hour or forty five minutes to cleaning my house each day, and spend the rest of the time devoted to my kids. I do wash dishes after each meal so they don't pile up, wipe counters and sweep everynight, do about three quick pickups daily (with help from the kids), do laudry throughout the day, and always fold clothes after my kids are in bed. I like to just stay on top of things so I don't get overwhelmed or end up spending too much time cleaning when I could be out playing, hiking, gardening, reading to my kids. I have found that my kids seem to feel more relaxed when the home is running smoothly, and I feel a lot ore calm and collected.
Oh yeah- I also think it helps to determine what absolutely needs to be done for your comfort level, and then relax about the rest. Mine is the dishes need to be done and toys need to be put away every night.
I just realized that this is in working mamas. I am home with the kids so I have lots more time to get things done at a relaxed pace. Sorry!
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Hi! I came here out of curiosity as I have thought about this many times.
i too am a SaHM..>Hi farmer mama> And the thought I often think is that if we werent home so much we wouldnt be making such messes. and so, fwiw-- I want to say that It's NEVER Done. i gave up on dusting a looong time ago. if I DO do it, it's like a special thing-- wow--- look at that wood. my how it looks soo And I prioritize and keep up with it when I can. as someone else has said I am much more relaxed when certain things are done: Dishes, Kitchen floor, bathroom (at least the sink). the rest is just gonna have to wait until the kids are grown... oh yeah, and then i wont be wasting my time cleaning when I could be enjoying some peace and quiet or a trip to the beach ALONE or persuing many other undiscovered talents....Ahhhh Hope i make it!
1. We live in very small quarters. We aren't "house" people anyways, but one of the biggest reasons is that it is just too much work to keep a house clean. So we live in small condos/apartments (we move around alot, lol) no more than about 800 sq ft.

2. What's also handy about having a one-floor, small space is that I can do so many things while still watching DD. I can do laundry easily, since the washer/dryer is a stackable unit in a closet between the bedroom and bathroom, opening onto the living room. So doing laundry is a snap. I can also clean surfaces, vaccuum, etc all while DD is running around playing.

3. I have a relatively high "mess" threshold (ie. I can tolerate messes for a while longer than most). I figure this is the time in life where time with family and DD is more important. Things are getting alot tidier now that DD is getting better and not scattering toys and crayons everywhere, but still the real cleaning gets done less often than I'd like.

4. I try to multitask. While giving DD a bath, I'll clean the sink and countertop. I do the toilets after I spray off a poopy diaper, keeping a sponge and a bottle of vinegar and also of alcohol close by. A few sprays and wipes each time, and the toilet stays disinfected and clean. The floor and tub...well, that is not so good, lol. But I just have to recognize that we aren't going to die of typhoid if the tub has a ring around it, plus we don't get much company.

With all that said, I really miss my cleaning lady!!! We had one before DD was born and it was so great. She only came every other week, but it was enough to get the real cleaning/sanitizing done. The rest was just tidying up and that was fairly easy to keep on top of.

PS - my DH actually does help out alot, bless his heart, but he just really really sucks at it, lol. his idea of clean and mine are quite different.
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Totally agree with Elfmom, coulda written her response:

Getting all the housework done?

It is vitally important that we have company once every three months or so. Otherwise parts of my house disappear under heaps of crud, never to be seen again.
Get it all done? Surely you gest! It is never all done. In fact, I would say that I never make it more than 1/2 way. And I am blessed with a husband who will help. I have determined what absolutely must be done and do that, most of the time. For me, that is cooking really good dinners, doing the dishes at night, and keeping up with the laundry. The rest of the house is a total disaster on a regular basis. When we have company coming, I clean. I do a deep cleaning once every 3-4 months when my parents (and landlords) are coming because my father is phobic about dirt and threatens to evict us if things are dirty. Other than that, the bathrooms smell, the kid's toys are everywhere, the floors are sticky, the garage is a total disaster and the lawn needs to be mowed. Shrug. It won't kill anyone, so its not a priority.

I am dreaming of the point where we can afford a cleaning person.
just going to start off saying that, like all the pp, it's never all done.

i wrote a post like this a few months ago. i have always been a slob, totally unorganized, and let's just say that having kids didn't improve things. actually, let me take that back, it did a little because they are motivation, but honestly the house was still a mess. and in my post a few months ago i said flylady did not work for me. then my neighbor told me about her sister whose house is spotless and she has 4 kids, and says she uses flylady, so i had to try it again.
it's still not perfect, or even close. but, for the most part, it's clean. and i give most credit to the flylady system. i tried it for a third time, told myself that it's going to take a long time to get the house clean (as she says, you didn't get it messy over night, won't get it clean that fast either).
The following helped me a lot:
1. "baby steps, baby steps"
2. This is the big one: "any housework you do at all blesses your family. it does not need to be perfect".
3. i do not shine my sink. i clean my kitchen counters every night though (ok, almost every night).
4. my bedtime routine. i do it most nights before i go to bed. if i skip a night, or several, i don't beat myself up over it, i just pick up where i left off. just pick up before bed.
5. once in a while, i do my 27 fling boogies, room rescue, etc. just when i feel like it.
something is better than nothing.
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I have a VERY small apartment. Little comes in. That helps.

We take off our shoes at the door. That helps.

I am fortunate enough to PAY someone to come in for four hours every two weeks. I COULDN'T DO THIS WITHOUT HER!!!!

My son thinks vacuuming is a game so he and the babysitter do it about every other day.

My husband does about 90% of the dishes and 60% of the laundry (down from 100% since the laundry room in our building re-opened after a several month hiatus due to basement repairs).

I still have terrible back pain so there are a lot of things I can't do and I get tired easily. I organize logistics. (That's something.
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I have two words: cleaning person! I am lucky enough to be able to afford someone to clean my house every other week. I can keep up with the clutter and day to day dishes and once every two weeks I have to do some major straightening to prepare for the cleaning woman! It has changed my life...
Yup, so many people think of a cleaning lady as a luxury, but once I had one, I understood just how much of a lifesaver it is. Twice a month doesn't have to cost much, and it is soooo worth it for the extra time it gave me with my family. Right now budget is way too tight, but this time should pass soon and hiring a cleaning lady will be right up there on my list!! (especially when I have not one but TWO children to look after!!).

Originally Posted by Harper
I can keep up with the clutter and day to day dishes and once every two weeks I have to do some major straightening to prepare for the cleaning woman! It has changed my life...

I can not keep up with the clutter and laundry and dishes!! I enjoy cleaning, it is the clutter crap that gets me down!
Can someone explain flylady? I could use some help because it's not getting done! It takes me a month to get the various components of the bathroom cleaned so it never looks good all at once. the mess accummulates so quickly, yet takes so much time to go away.
DH is off for the summer...I think once he goes back to school I'm really going to push for the cleaning lady!

Originally Posted by sohj
I have a VERY small apartment. Little comes in. That helps.

I, unfortunately, have a big house, and a LOT comes in! Therein lies the problem for us. It's getting better, and, like others have said, I try not to beat myself up about it. My standards have fallen WAY down, believe me!

DH is not from the housecleaners, although he will do something if I ask him to (and ask him, and ask him, and ask him...
). I'd like it if my 4.5 yo dd would do a little more picking up. However, I don't want our entire relationship to be about that. And she told me very clearly the other day, "But Mom, I don't LIKE cleaning up!" Amen, sister, I can testify!

Cleaning lady helps keep me focused, but even with that, the clutter gets beyond me sometimes. For me, the tip-off point is when I have to spend 20 minutes looking for the scissors, or the permission slip that needs to go back to day care THIS MORNING...or my badge for work that is currently Missing in Action...that is when I have to get serious about cleaning, and when I usually throw everyone out of the house for a couple of hours, crank on the radio and get down to it.

No real words of wisdom to add, just comiseration.

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flylady is a yahoo group (with a webpage , I think). It is kind of a way of life. Some people really like it, others hate it.

we too have a small house. and it is never done. and I dream of a cleaning lady. someday maybe my ship will come it.

i have a trash can by the front door for trash from the car. junk mail and the misc. crap that needs a home.

we have a wooden box near the door to hold hats/mittens/etc. and our briefcases/diaper bags.

keys on key hook (I am forever losing mine).

when i get up I get showered, dressed and clean up the bathroom -- small cleaning. shower gets done about 2 x a month. Dh also tidies up in there when dd is taking a bath.

all the dishes are done after dinner so there's no counter crud. Dishwasher has been a lifesaver for me. I empty the dishwasher when dd is eating bfast (she eats slower than me).

i vacuum while dd is playing in the living room.

: just don't do it unless company is coming or it is really bad.

if you're a clutter person, try getting rid of the stuff you don't use. Or putting the rest away in a cabinet. Babyproofing has really helped me.

laundry is my biggest issue. I've come up with a system. in the mornign I put in one load before breakfast and then in the evening before dinner I shuffle it along. I put away each load as it comes out. I am totally overwhelmed with laundry otherwise and never get it put away.

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