Recently, I ran into a friend who asked me when I was going to write about spring cleaning here on Home-Ec 101. Well, normally I do my spring cleaning right after Easter so I can find any rogue Easter eggs running around my house. (Because it always rains here on Easter, always.)
Then my friend said she didn’t normally do spring cleaning because her house was so “disastrously messy” that it could take months. Haha, I understand the feeling of “it could take months to clean my house, so why bother?” I’ve had that kind of mess on my hands before when I had been on bed rest for 6 weeks and my husband who is apparently allergic to cleaning was in charge of the cooking and cleaning and kid-raising. When I finally came off bed rest with a new baby and a horribly messy house, I got depressed about it all and just thought, “why bother?”
But having a clean house is beneficial on so many levels. First, it makes you feel better in general. My mom always would harangue me about my messy house contributing to my depression. I thought, “Right, mom, a clean house would totally fix my depression.” But I found she was right- having a clean house really does make me feel better.
Add that to being able to find things easily, thereby saving you money (how many times have you had to buy something you couldn’t find, only to find it again later and be mad that you wasted the money?), time, and energy. Once your house is clean, it is far easier to maintain.
So how can you get that super-messy house under control? First, you have to be completely determined that you are going to get your house under control once and for all. It might take you months, but I doubt it. Check your supplies and make sure you have enough cleaning supplies, laundry detergent, and trash bags. Once you’ve done that, you need to set goals and just get started.
A completely messy house is overwhelming, so let me tell you where to start. Start with the laundry. Picking up those clothes that are strewn everywhere will make an immediate difference in how your house looks, plus it’s a task that you can do while you’re doing lots of other things. As you’re doing laundry, put a plastic bag by the dryer for clothes you are going to give away. Now, I always fold the clothes right in the laundry room, and when I have everything folded I call the kids in who have clothes in that particular load and ask them about each item of clothing. If it doesn’t fit, or they just don’t like the item of clothing, out it goes. Same goes for me and my stuff. My husband, well, I just get rid of stuff that’s unusually holey and hope he doesn’t notice.
Once the laundry’s rolling, go clean the smallest room in your house. Usually, that’s a bathroom. Or sometimes it’s your laundry room, which is handy since you’re doing all this laundry anyway- might as well have a sparkly clean laundry room to do all that laundry in. Bag up trash, get rid of stuff you won’t use, and wash the floors. Dust the walls and wash the woodwork. Clean it as if your mother-in-law was coming to inspect it with white gloves.
Once you have the smallest room in your house cleaned, enjoy the nice feeling of a completely clean room, and then move on to your hardest room to clean. For some, this might be the kitchen, for others, it might be a kid bedroom. Whatever it is, you are going to have to tackle it sometime and it might as well be sooner rather than later. Whatever it is, buckle down and get to work on it.
Once you have the worst room tackled, the rest can’t be all that bad. Just work room by room until you have it all finished. Then enjoy your clean house!
Tomorrow, I’ll give you step by step room specific cleaning tips.