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How do you find time to keep a whole house clean?

(33 Posts)
MamaGeekChic Mon 29-Oct-12 13:33:50

I'm fed up. My house feels a bit grotty... christmas is coming and god forbid people might actually want to come and visit. Now don't get me wrong, we find time to do all the surface-y stuff: wipe down the kitchen sufaces/change beds/towels/wash and iron clothes/keep on top of dishes and the house is tidy as far as is possible in a new build with very little storage- but where do you find time for the BIG stuff? We both work full time, I leave at 7.30am and return about 6.30pm with 3 overnights 500miles away each month, DD is 18mo. I just can't seem to find time to do all the stuff my Mum does... cleaning floors and ovens, windows, skirtings, blinds, kitchen cupboards etc etc. Are we supposed to give up weekends family time for this? We just can't get on top of it! Any tips?

Eglantyne Mon 29-Oct-12 13:35:46

Apart form the floors, I just don't do those things. I save them for when I move house. wink

jennycrofter Mon 29-Oct-12 13:38:03

Perhaps a cleaner just to come in and do those specific jobs? Maybe even just once a month?

And mainly not beating yourself up. That doesn't actually clean the skirtings, but you won't mind, because you're recognising that you've got plenty on your plate!

Slatternismymiddlename Mon 29-Oct-12 13:45:41

My mother also did all of those things but she was a SAHM and has always taken great pride in her house. I however did not inherit that aspect of her personality. It is easy to say but I would try to stop worrying so much about it. There are only so many hours in the day and your family is important. Don't sweat the small stuff.

Arisbottle Mon 29-Oct-12 13:48:37

We get up early, we blitz a room every morning before going to work.

I teach, every glad term I deep clean the house.

BeingBooyhoo Mon 29-Oct-12 13:51:49

i think with your working circumstances you would stand the best chance of getting these jobs done if you had a cleaner. you work long hours! there is no way i could do all the big stuff either if i worked full time. could you hire a cleaner or maybe even an organiser person and book a week off work before xmas so that you could go through everything you want tackled?

noisytoys Mon 29-Oct-12 13:52:19

I don't and I'm a SAHM. starting to think I should put in more effort though

MousyMouse Mon 29-Oct-12 13:57:46

we don't. maybe do it in a big joint (!) effort once a year or so.
we keep the surfaces clean, hover etc regularly and don't make too much of a mess generally.

MamaGeekChic Mon 29-Oct-12 14:00:44

Thanks, we used to have a cleaner but it didn't really work out for us so we cancelled after a couple of months. Will chat to DP and consider trying again though. Maybe I just clean too slow... I've got a day's annual leave today and DD has napped for 2 hours and I've only managed to clean the kitchen and downstairs loo (no floors, couldn't bring myself to start). Can't hoover incase I waken her.

BeingBooyhoo Mon 29-Oct-12 14:07:13

i think if you are all out everyday then hoovering once at the weekends is totally acceptable. i have a hairy shedding dog, two cats and messy children and we are in all day (apart from school) so i have to hoover at least once a day. i really notice the difference if we haven't been in the house all day. as long as you are getting dishes, washing and surfaces cleared/cleaned after use then you are covering the basics. hoovering, mopping and dusting (unless it's a massive house) could be done in an hour if the two of you do a level or 'job' each in turns (so one dusts while other does windows then one hoovers and other follows with mop) the bathroom can be done really easily after each use. get flushable bathroom wipes, and wipe loo and basin after they're used, same with shower/bath. kitchen cupboards? give a quick wipe out when you are taking something out or waiting for the kettle to boil. jsut do one at a time when you get a chance.

mamij Mon 29-Oct-12 14:10:13

I'm a SAHM with two toddlers and certainly don't do everything on your list. I do kitchen/dining surfaces, cooker, and Hoover the floors. We have a cleaner every two weeks to do the rest - she's a godsend.

dreamingofsun Mon 29-Oct-12 14:16:05

why didn't the cleaner work out? Maybe it was the person rather than cleaners perse? if you work FT you shouldn't be cleaning on your days off - you should be doing something more enjoyable with your child or relaxing (or that's my view anyway - i hate cleaning)

BeingBooyhoo Mon 29-Oct-12 14:16:14

skirtings get a quick swipe over with the mop as i'm doing the floors, and that's just the skirting that's accessible without moving any furniture. oven hasn't been done since i moved in in june blush. but in reality it wouldn't take all day to do if i wanted to. spray something oven-cleanery on, leave it, come back and scrub/rinse. blinds, i think my mum does hers once or twice a year. all she does is take them down, put them in a pillowcase and wash in machine then hang them up again while wet.

BeingBooyhoo Mon 29-Oct-12 14:17:07

i agree dreaming. family time is more important than skirting boards or blinds.

Skivvytomany Mon 29-Oct-12 14:20:48

Boyhoo is that fabric vertical blinds, I never thought of cleaning them that way. I might actually clean mines now.

BeingBooyhoo Mon 29-Oct-12 14:21:58

yes the fabric vertical ones that you pull a cord to close and another one to tilt.

HeinousHecate Mon 29-Oct-12 14:22:29

Are we supposed to give up weekends family time for this?



You can't have both. All the weekend free for family time and the jobs done that you don't find time for during the week.

Pick one thing. You don't have to do all the things you mention in one go.

So saturday spend half an hour cleaning the oven while your husband washes the windows. Rest of the day is free.
sunday, spend an hour doing the skirting boards while your husband does the blinds

next weekend, pick two other things.

That's how you could do it if you wanted to do it. Or do one job every evening from 7-730pm <shrug>

There is time. It is just a question of how you choose to use your time.

atm, you choose to use it for family time.

Fair enough! grin Good use of it. But if you choose to take some of that time and use it for cleaning, it is possible.

I know what you mean about the motivation! Actually getting off your arse and getting started is the hardest part of it grin

BeingBooyhoo Mon 29-Oct-12 14:23:18

i think she might put an elastic band round each end before putting in pillowcase to stop them getting tangled and tearing.

BeingBooyhoo Mon 29-Oct-12 14:25:19

i refuse to do any housework on sundays. i'm not religious so it's not a day of worship thing, i just think there should be one day, if possible where there isn't a nagging chore waiting to be done. (apart from the essential cooking and washing dishes)

BeingBooyhoo Mon 29-Oct-12 14:26:34

"Actually getting off your arse and getting started is the hardest part of it "

totally agree! <tries to encourage own arse off the sofa> <fails>

Arisbottle Mon 29-Oct-12 14:34:19

You can do family time and do skirting boards, even if it means as we do, that you get up before the children .

No need to resort to platitudes that a happy home is a dirty one , not that I am saying that the ops home is dirty.

Arisbottle Mon 29-Oct-12 14:35:49

Those vertical fabric blinds are a nightmare I would get get rid. We have horizontal ones, I give them a once over with the steam cleaner, takes seconds.

BeingBooyhoo Mon 29-Oct-12 14:49:15

hmm i'm not resorting to platitudes. i do think family time is more important than skirting boards and i see no sense in stressing out over getting them cleaned if it means your already limited time with dcs is cut even more. skirting boards wont suffer if they dont get looked at more than twice a year. it's a bit of dirt. who cares? who even looks at them? if you can fit it in and still have great time with dcs then yeah, do it. no-ones saying you shouldn't. i'm just saying OP shouldn't beat herself up if she doesn't manage it. i honestly couldn't tell you how clean my parent's house was when we were children. i dont remember seeing dirt anywhere. i dont remember seeing it in any house as a child because it just wasn't on my radar. children dont care. (obviously i'm not advocating living in filth kim and aggie style)

MrsCantSayAnything Mon 29-Oct-12 14:51:35

I'm too tired to do the bits that don't show or don't smell. That's my rule in general....time enough for cleaning the tops of cupboards when the kids are older.

Arisbottle Mon 29-Oct-12 15:01:23

I am not saying she should have to do then. But the statement that " family time is more inportant than cleaning" is meaningless. Most of us are not ignoring our children for hours on end to have a sparking house .But there is nothing wrong with getting children to entertain themselves whilst you clean or getting then to help. It need not take up the whole day and then you have the rest of the day to relax.

The OP says he feels fed up and that her house is grotty. She said herself she wants to do more, my practical suggestion waste get up an hour earlier. It is also not just up to the OP if there are others in the house .

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