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Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Breaking Your Cleaning Routine into Daily Tasks

As you may be picking up by now, I am a bit of a free spirit.  I am not a big planner.  I love to be able to "wing it".  While this is a wonderful trait at times, it has also been a huge burden.  For years I really had no form of a routine to my day or week.  I just floated through life picking and choosing what I thought needed to be done.  I would spend all day just working on school with the kids, but never getting any housework done at all.  The outcome was a very unproductive young mother.

With each new child, I felt as though I was drowning in chores and unfinished projects.  I often felt defeated, and depressed.  I would go through spells were I would "get my act together" but it would only last for a few weeks, and then I was right back into my old habits.  I learned to work around it, but still knew there had to be a better way! 

Then one day my sister told me about this website she had found.  She told me all about this lady that had a theory that you had to start organizing your life by "shining your sink".  As she told me more I just sat there shaking my head and thinking, "That is just stupid!  Who is going to take the time to shine a sink when the rest of the house is a mess!"  After she left, I got curious.  I had to go check out this ridiculous site.  I went to and began to read about Marla Cilley, The Fly Lady.  I have to admit I was drawn in to what she had to say.  I could tell she had really been where I was and understood.  I started doing her baby steps and in no time found I was "flying".  As I got more comfortable with the idea of routines, I began to adapt them to fit my life and what worked best for me.

The Fly Lady has a once a week cleaning hour that she calls "blessing her house".  I loved this, but the one hour once a week just didn't work for me.  I knew if I was going to stick with this I needed to break these down into very small tasks.  Here is the schedule I have finally found works best for me.

Monday - wash/ change sheets
Tuesday- clean windows/ glass/ mirrors
Wednesday- dust and trash out
Thursday - vacuum
Friday- sweep and mop hardwoods
Saturday- menu planning and special projects
Sunday - rest

All of these things are done quickly and I don't worry about them being perfect.  I usually spend less than 15 minutes on each of these tasks.  Even after I had worked out this schedule I found I was still skipping doing certain tasks, so I put them all into my scheduler and have it send me reminders every morning on my phone.  I don't clear the reminder until I complete the task.  I am able to do these right along with my everyday tasks.  I also try to tidy up as I go too.  It is amazing how Lego's can find themselves all over this house!

FlyLady also breaks the house down into weekly zones making a daily task for each day in that zone.  I also added these into my routine.  I will talk more about how I do my zones in a future post.  Below are links for two of Marla Cilley's books.  Let me know if you have found this helpful by leaving a testimonial.


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