The Berks-Mont News (http://www.berksmontnews.com)

Chronicles of a First Time Mommy by Ashley Smith Keeping it Clean… Kind of


Thursday, April 11, 2013

I am a clean freak, or was a clean freak before I had the baby and my house became cluttered with swings, and Bumbos, and Boppys and all sorts of crazy baby things we MUST have. I am that person that vacuumed every day and cleaned her grout with an old toothbrush… for fun.
Oh, how things have changed. I don’t have the time to clean like I used to, and it was unrealistic in the first place. My new goal is to keep the house “drop in ready”. Which means, if someone comes to the door that I’m not expecting, I will be able to open the door and welcome them in and not be mortified by the state of my home.
My Type-A, can’t go to bed until the dishes are all clean, need for everything to be “in its place” personality is not always my best quality. Instead of “reminding,” a.k.a nagging, my husband daily, I developed a simple schedule to keep our home “drop in ready” once the baby arrived.
It takes about 30 minutes each day, which is 15 minutes of cleaning per person. The house is always “tidy” not CLEAN, but it’s manageable. We post it on the fridge so no one forgets the chore of the day.
Every morning:
Make beds, Load/unload dishwasher, Wipe down the bathroom vanity.
Every night when we get home: Unload/ load dishwasher while dinner is cooking, Pack lunches and stack them in the fridge, Take out trash, Wipe down kitchen counters, Set coffee pot to start automatically.
Do the “Chore of the Day” as listed below:
Monday: vacuum the entire house. Rugs, hardwood, tile, carpet, sofas.
Tuesday: dust everything, steam clean the carpet.
Wednesday: sweep and steam mop kitchen and bathroom tile floors, steam mop the hardwood.
Thursday: vacuum for pet hair, empty and wash cat litter bin out and refill, brush dog
Friday: clean the bathrooms, scrub the shower/tub, toilets, sinks, and all mirrors in the house.
Saturday: laundry day! Sort all laundry, wash, dry, fold, and hang, change bedding. Go to the Farmer’s market and grocery store.
Sunday: Select 5 outfits for the week, iron outfits, meal plan and post meals in the kitchen on the chalkboard, make any food ahead of time that I can for the week, including all homemade baby food.
This is my weekly schedule. Once every two weeks, I get down on my hands and knees with my old toothbrush and go to town on that grout (it’s a great stress reliever). Deep cleaning is just not possible to do in a two to three hour stretch like I used to. Realistically, we only have 15-20 minutes to clean while the baby plays by herself. This is what works for us, it may not be right for every family, but it could be a nice way to break up the cleaning and stay organized and tidy.
*What I did not include, is we clean our cat litter each morning when we feed our pets breakfast. If you are not a pet owner, please disregard that part of my schedule!*
Ashley Smith resides in Berks County with her husband, Aaron; daughter, Gracie, 6 months;her dog, Sam; and cat, Jack, who runs the show. She is an English as a Second Language teacher by day at Wilson, and an amateur chef, yoga enthusiast, Modern Family fanatic, and first time mommy by night.Contact her at greenforgrace@gmail.com.