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Does anyone have a cleaning routine I could steal?

(17 Posts)
PersisFord Fri 22-Sep-17 22:31:47


We have recently moved abroad and I'm at home with the kids. We are a bit no cleaner. We are in a tiny rental, so there's not lots of area to clean but we are in it a lot with 3 little kids so it's getting pretty dirty.

Until now I have always had a cleaner. So I have tidied up after us but not done the proper cleaning and scrubbing. I feel like I am cleaning all the time but always on the back foot and I wondered if some kind of routine would help? The other trouble is that I'm homesick, I miss my house and my work, and am miserable about the whole situation and just don't seem to be able to sort this out myself.

I'd love someone to just tell me what to do.

JoJoSM2 Sun 24-Sep-17 00:13:00

Turn it into your job? Make a list of jobs and timetable them in the week.

elephantoverthehill Sun 24-Sep-17 00:22:49

Start at the top. Bedrooms then downstairs. Sweep/ mop down the stairs.
Start at the top. Cobwebs, windows, mirrors, dusting, polishing, skirting boards and then hoovering.
Kitchen and bathroom - sink/basin last because you need the water. And then you might consider the inside of the fridge, oven, dishwasher and kitchen bin.

WittgensteinsBunny Sun 24-Sep-17 08:40:00

I've recently found Emily Norris vlogs on YouTube. She has lots of routines and hacks - she's very cheerful and I have found her to be quite motivating in a weird way - I am not like her and she does grate on my feminist side a bit.

I'm a SAHM, sacked our cleaner in summer and have just put our house on the market as it's tiny and we need more space so am trying to be more organised / routined. We decluttered earlier in summer - big declutter. So our house is easy to tidy. Here are the things that I've found to work cleaning wise:

Early evening - from 6pm
- pick up toys with children as bath is running and tidy front room. Put any bits and bobs away.
- Hoover front room if children are in the bath with DH or leave till later.
- wash up / load dishwasher and make sure it's on before you go to bed. Wipe down sides. Leave kitchen tidy.

Wake up half an hour earlier than you need to get up. For me that's the alarm at 6.15 and up for 6.30. Put kettle on. Make tea.

Put a load of washing on, unload dishwasher, fold clothes from airer / tumble dryer. Put upstairs ready to put away.

Make breakfast, get children drinks etc

7am I have a shower, get dressed, open curtains, windows, make all beds, get clothes for the children and then dry my hair / do make-up

8am dress children, clean teeth, brush hair and if any time is left over put breakfast dishes away / put some clothes away / Hoover / wipe table from breakfast

8.30 school run. DD2 and me get home at 9.15ish. Put tv on for her / get out some toys. Then a few chores. Hang up / tumble dry washing. I will then spend about an 30 mins - hour finishing off anything I didn't get done, maybe mop kitchen or wipe down bathroom, dust front room, put away clothes etc

9.45/10.15 take DD2 to an activity.

11.30 / 12 is lunch time. Tidy everything away straight after lunch. Wipe down. Sweep up under table. Then I play with DD2 or read or watch tv together.

1.30 Take dd to the park / soft play / supermarket. Pick up DD1 from school at 3.15. We hang out together, then make dinner for 5pm, then bath at 6 and back to the start of the routine.

If anything needs a more thorough clean e.g. Blinds need dusting, removing limescale from taps, bathroom deep clean, I usually save it for Saturday morning.

It is the constant wiping and putting away and washing up through the day that keeps the house clean and makes the deeper cleans at the weekend possible. I think it probably sounds like a lot but actually we do loads of nice activities together through the day and I always have time for DD after school / time for coffee with friends. The key for me has been leaving the kitchen tidy at night / starting early in the morning - I can pretty much have a spotless house by 8.30 and then I like to get out with DD2. It's much harder if you have more than one child at home with you / younger children (mine are 2.5 and 4) and if you're unable to get out for big chunks of the day. Oh and I always have a rest on Sun morning! HTH

BrutusMcDogface Sun 24-Sep-17 11:33:51

That's great, Witt! I did try and get up earlier than my kids...but they're going through a phase of getting up at 5.30....😭

PersisFord Sun 24-Sep-17 11:56:35

Mine are up at 5:30 too. It's not still jet lag, it's just torment!!

I'm fine with the day to day wiping up, dishwasher, etc. It's the proper cleaning - floor washing, oven, fridge - everything in elephant's list. Mirrors. Windows. I don't know how often I should be doing them even! I Hoover downstairs about every other day but what about bedrooms?!?

I'm so clueless!

At the moment we get up at 5:30 and all have a cuddle on the sofa. Then the kids play and I do dishwasher, make breakfast. We eat breakfast, then they play while I have a shower, get dressed, make lunches, hang out washing, put on slow cooker if necessary. Then we go out - preschool for 3 mornings for twins or out to the park or something if not a preschool day. Home for lunch, DS has a sleep, girls watch TV while I Hoover, clean kitchen, sort laundry. Everyone up, out somewhere or play in the garden in the afternoon, more TV or tablets for half an hour while I get supper sorted. I clean the bathroom while they are in the bath, then up to bed. They are still unsettled and homesick and bedtime is requiring a LOT of stories and singing. Then downstairs, tidy up from supper, put laundry and dishwasher on and collapse.

I guess I will have to start doing some at the weekends. That's the only time I see DH though. It's a good idea to think of it as a job, but it's a job I don't like, am not very good at, and I never wanted. Oh, and that I don't get paid for. It's not my house and I don't feel like looking after it except that I want my deposit back!!!

PersisFord Sun 24-Sep-17 11:58:16

Sorry, that sounds really petulant. Thank you for all of your ideas. Start at the top is a great one - might give the kids beans on toast tomorrow and use the cooking time to do the upstairs.....

JoJoSM2 Sun 24-Sep-17 17:53:02

Is it proving difficult for you to get a job so that you can get your sanity back + employ a cleaner? I'm it sure how likely you are to feel happy in the current set up as it doesn't suit you.

WittgensteinsBunny Sun 24-Sep-17 17:56:57

I didn't think I sounded petulant. It's hard to face a full day of anything, including domestic duties and child rearing on a 5.30 start! How old are your children out of interest? We're only starting to be organised and tidy consistently because we're desperately trying to sell our house (big incentive as we're trying to put in an offer on our dream home) and because DD1 is now at school. Before it was a totally different story!

WittgensteinsBunny Sun 24-Sep-17 17:59:15

Also, I have to get out and be with other adults. My sanity is shot on crap sleep and children for company. Are there groups near you? Or an expat community? I only ask because the house always feels like a bigger problem to me if I'm trapped in and noticing all the problems.

WittgensteinsBunny Sun 24-Sep-17 18:04:31

In the first message that should say "I didn't think you sounded petulant" sorry for the typo x

ScrunchyBook Sun 24-Sep-17 18:16:13

It's a good idea to think of it as a job, but it's a job I don't like, am not very good at, and I never wanted. Oh, and that I don't get paid for.

I don't see why it's just your responsibility? Surely you and your DH can share the cleaning?

Newchick Sun 24-Sep-17 18:20:58

I have just found The Organised Mum's blog and think her method is really good - doing some basics daily and then a minimum of half an hour cleaning each week day. On Fridays it's a rotating focus on 'other' jobs e.g. cleaning the oven which to me are the ones that never get done. Have a look at her blog and see what you think.

GlitteryFluff Sun 24-Sep-17 18:26:27

I don't have a planned schedule or routine, I do things as I see they need doing. Not when stuff is filthy dirty, but when things aren't looking so shiny I do it.
You've got 3 kids, don't be too hard on yourself, it's never gonna be perfect.

thenewaveragebear1983 Sun 24-Sep-17 18:26:34

I have 3 dc and it's much easier to clean if everywhere is tidy first. We do 'hurricane housework' every day- set a timer on your phone, for about 3 minutes, then whizz round putting away all the toys, straightening the cushions, etc etc in the lounge, playroom, bedrooms if necessary. My dc love it (well the 5 and 2 yo do!) and it's amazing how quickly the room gets tidy. We do it right before bedtime routine so it doesn't get messed up again. I'm not naturally tidy but I hate clutter everywhere, this game has changed our whole house into a tidy one!

I will then do a proper room by room clean each week, but not on any set schedule as it depends on the dc behaving! So I'll do lounge vacuum and dust, mop floors, hoover stairs, etc once a week. I'll vacuum the hall and kitchen every couple of days. I do proper bathroom clean once a week, but surface clean, loo, fold towels etc every couple of days. I clean the kitchen surfaces every day at least once, while doing the dishwasher, wiping the highchair etc.

PersisFord Sun 24-Sep-17 18:43:35

Thanks guys, so nice just to have the virtual company with this! I can't work because I don't have a work permit and because our childcare costs would be more than I could earn here and we are only just managing on DHs salary as it is. I'm trying to meet people and have managed a couple of friends, a couple of toddler groups, but there is a lot of time unfilled by activity especially as we don't have much spare cash and only 1 car which DH needs for work most days. He does do stuff at the weekends but is out of the house from 6am until about 8:30 so not loads of time in the week. I was hoping that I could get most of it done in the week so we didn't have to at the weekend.

I'll look at those blogs, that's what I need I think - a little rota to tell me when to do the oven etc! And again, thank you!

imjessie Sun 24-Sep-17 19:37:57

I just do a bit every day and make sure I clean all the bathrooms once a week ( I have 4 if the feckers ) . I tidied all the time and clean up food etc as I go along . I do dusting once a week rotating rooms and hoover 2/3 times a week . I wash most days and do ironing when there is about 15 mins worth . My house is usually very clean and tidy , I can't stand mess although I'm not fussed about germs I like things to be clean and tidy . I'm also a sahm although my dc are at school so I do have a lot of time , I only spend 2 hours max a day doing all of this . Mostly just an hour spread out over the day .

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