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what makes your life easier?

(110 Posts)
4littleones Mon 07-Jul-14 18:52:13

we have a roomba and a scooba and they both make our house tidier and cleaner, If anything just to give us the motivation to clear the floors everyday so it doesn't build up into a big job like it used to.

What is your most useful possession? We have just had another baby and my goodness have I noticed it in the housework! I am aware spending time with the kids is more important so I am just trying to see if there is anything else I'm missing that will save me a bit of time.

I know clutter is the enemy and have been decluttering gradually but no time to do any at the moment.

Trooperslane Mon 07-Jul-14 18:54:02

I was just about to start a thread like this, op smile

I'm about to go back to work after mat leave DVD I have NO IDEA how we'll cope.

Trooperslane Mon 07-Jul-14 18:54:30

Oh - I'll add one.

Slow cooker. Amazing invention.

stargirl1701 Mon 07-Jul-14 18:54:38

Not a possession but a cleaner!

4littleones Mon 07-Jul-14 19:06:14

see wwe have had a cleaner for the past few weeks as I was in agony towards the end of my pregnancy. but not really finding it's helping enough to justify the cost and also the inconvenience of having somebody in the house when we want to get on with our day. We usually end up going out and it always ends up stressful and I am usually disappointed with the results. sad
so hoping to let her go eventually but want to make sure we can cope!

Youoryou Mon 07-Jul-14 19:39:46

Decluttering will make your life amazingly easier. I was drowning in clutter last year. I now have just half of what I used to have. Hardly anything on work surfaces, got rid of excess furniture so cleaning is a doddle!

Just get rid of one or two items a day. It soon adds up. I get rid of junk mail straightaway, unwanted gifts straight in the charity bag, DC clothes that don't fit, get rid of them straightaway. I no longer allow anything to build up. Ironing for 15 minutes a day keeps my ironing basket empty

frankie80 Mon 07-Jul-14 19:43:03

Dishwasher! Also using an ironing company and grocery ordering online

I could do with other cheat stuff too but would like recommendations

WhoMovedMyVuvuzela Mon 07-Jul-14 20:46:44

Tumble dryer
Not ironing
Fresh ready made mash
Tins of chopped and fried onions
Chicken breast chopped up by the butcher if I am doing curry/casserole
Other creations that the butcher has rustled up that can go straight into the oven just need rice/mash and veg to go with
Slow cooker
Sky plus
Patent leather school shoes for DD so I don't feel the need to get the polish out

I am lucky that we have a decent but reasonably priced butches really close to us. I am a total time saving cheat wherever and whenever possible.

Mrsgrumble Mon 07-Jul-14 21:05:55

For me it is cooking large batches of bolognese and curry and freezing into portions. If I cook pork chops, I will cook about eight and pour over gravy and onions and freeze.

I've started to cook extra mash and freeze.

Wipes from aldi saves a lot of hassle cleaning cloths etc

Handheld hoover and a chilli hoover from lakeland

Microwave rice and pasta .. Worth the extra few quid some evenings.

Gnocchi takes minutes

Tumble drier

I have thinned out my wardrobe and decluttered the whole house. Honestly great thing to do. I sent two large bags to charity shop

Thinning out draining friend who just used me as a moan receiver and gossiped about everyone and anyone that made me paranoid she was doing it about me too.

Mostlyjustaluker Tue 08-Jul-14 17:32:17

I have said it before but one of those washing baskets that is divided into light and dark. When I pop my clothes in on a night time I note which is full and then the next day I pop on a load. No more sorting washing.

atticusclaw Tue 08-Jul-14 17:46:27

I had a meltdown a couple of weeks ago and did various things to make my life easier (and fingers crossed I am starting to notice the difference)

started to get rid of "stuff" Ten bin bags of clothes already gone to charity and five boxes of toys waiting to go. This will be an ongoing task because I tend to keep stuff just in case.

increased cleaners hours and switched my cleaner. This is making a big difference.

put roomba on every morning without fail, do a load of washing put dishwasher on. By 7.45 I feel like I've achieved something!

given the DCs a chores list (this one might take a while but I'm currently bribing them with football stickers!)

ordered hooks for the masses of keys we have hanging around and stuck them all to the inside of a cabinet in the utility room so that I can always put my hands on the right keys (I spend too much time hunting!)

had a big sort out of utility room and so now I know exactly where to find things like torches, candles, hot water bottles, spare lightbulbs.

new laundry baskets one for whites one for coloureds

bought the DSs a basket each and put all their hats scarves gloves etc in there ready so that they can always find what they need and we don't have constant arguments in the morning about which hat belongs to which boy

making "ready meals" I cooked two chickens at the weekend. We had roast dinner and then I chopped up all the meat and made "ready meal" curries and jerk chicken which are now in the freezer and ready to be whipped out if we come home late.

bulk bought toilet roll, kitchen roll etc so that we don't run out.

arranged for the window cleaner to come more regularly.

I will be adding more to the list!

Youoryou Tue 08-Jul-14 18:32:45

Wow well done atticus

That's a great tip about over buying household items that are forever running out like washing up liquid, loo rolls, washing powder etc. I have big stocks of these!

Mostlyjustaluker Tue 08-Jul-14 18:42:10

Trio nominate jobs to days eg Monday water plants, Tuesday deal with paper work. I felt much more organised when I did this.

You could try fly lady for advice. I did not really get on with it but I liked the tidy of setting a timer for 15 mins and doing as much as possible and when decluttering to chuck out x number of things. She also talks about hot spots, areas of your house with get messy quickly so should be tidied every day.

Trooperslane Tue 08-Jul-14 19:13:44

Another washing one for me.

Whichever type of washing you do most e.g. Lights vs darks goes straight into the machine rather than the basket.

So then you know when you have a full load and can stick it in when you feel that the shirt etc you're putting in fills the machine up.

No more getting to millions of washes at a go.

(Am I explaining this properly? Dd started her day at 430 so I'm probably babbling wink)

Mrsgrumble Tue 08-Jul-14 19:35:30

trooper love that idea. It's mostly darks here so I'm going to do that! Love colour catcher sheets too!

4littleones Wed 09-Jul-14 14:52:05

we don't sort washing into colours anymore. I used to obsess with it and had whites, darks, brights, towels/bedding etc all in separate loads. then woke up one day and realised I was giving myself an extra work load and extra stuff hanging around for no real reason. We now use the washing machine as our only washing storage. And then we put it on when full - regardless of what colours etc it is. We use colour catchers but re use the same one hundreds of times so it's not much of an extra cost. We now have no dirty washing hanging around, no washing baskets to store and never get behind with it.

I can honestly say it's had absolutely no effect on the quality of the laundry but has saved hours per week.

SideOfFoot Wed 09-Jul-14 19:48:58

Do washing every day, tumble dry and put it away, so no washing lying about, clean or dirty and no need for a washing basket lying about.

De clutter, junk mail straight to recycling, deal with other mail immediately, old clothes straight to bin when I get them for washing, food that is not realistically going to be used goes out, bypassing being stored in the fridge to be thrown out weeks later when it has gone off. Get rid of packaging, throw out junk, so not keep stuff "just in case", but I do admit that i am ruthless in my de cluttering.

QuiteQuietly Wed 09-Jul-14 20:13:06

If our dustbin is not full up the night before collection day, I run round the house with a bin bag to top it off. Not just "proper rubbish" but anything driving me nuts (plastic comic crap, broken stuff, DH's electrical cables without obvious purpose, crafts brought home from school, things I dislike given to DC by grandma). Less stuff always helps, and this means I am less likely to struggle to get everything in the bin in a few weeks time or on a child's birthday week.

minipie Wed 09-Jul-14 20:30:20

-Dishwasher (I put pots and pans in too where I can)
-Massive washing machine so I can do a whole laundry basket in one go
-Don't iron anything except DH shirts (cleaner does those)
-Frozen chopped onions
-Batch cooking and ready meals (usually stuffed pasta) in the freezer, also roast chicken on sunday does leftovers on Monday, so low effort dinners 2-3 times a week
-Ruthless about getting rid of stuff
-Loads of storage in all rooms so most things have A Place to Live
-Low maintenance garden and no houseplants as they have all died
-Buy back up toiletries and groceries ie loo roll, rice
-Never go upstairs/downstairs without taking something with
-A tidy husband (tidier than me) helps a LOT

cabbagedinner Thu 10-Jul-14 09:32:50

Marking place as need help too!!

4littleones Thu 10-Jul-14 11:49:43

I agree about not ironing. I never understand people who struggle to keep on top of things, who still iron everything. I understand domestic goddesses ironing things. I would iron if I was regularly "finished" doing everything else. But I have never felt like everything is done, and ironing is a non essential part of life so I really don't get it (other than uniforms/work shirts if they really need it)

Dancingwiththedrummer Thu 10-Jul-14 12:44:37

I only iron uniforms and cotton dresses most things don't et done!

Having a huge box for the kids pens, pencils, crayons etc helped. Before I out them in seperate pencil cases or in the crap kitchen drawer and caused clutter.

I use baby wipes to clean most things and go over with Mitch fibre cloth

Mostlyjustaluker Thu 10-Jul-14 16:17:56

Make sure you have a waste bin in each room and use them to get rid of stuff. After you have empty the bag, place lots of bags in the bottom and then put new bag in place. Then once a week you can nip in each room, take out the old bag tie it up and put a new bag in straight away.

Ihatemytoes Thu 10-Jul-14 18:51:29

Dishwasher, definitely!

IKnowaMouse Thu 10-Jul-14 21:30:27

I don't iron at all. I dry some stuff on hangers and have just bought an over bath airer that dries the rest of our stuff. No need to iron at all.

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