I don't ever remember my mom's house being dirty. Growing up, it always gave me the impression of being very clean and well kept. Every Spring/Summer, she would go on a massive cleaning spree, tearing every room apart, wiping down walls and dusting every surface and then putting everything back, after being wiped down first.
We would be excited because that meant our rooms would be rearranged and we could have new posters hung - plus the whole house always felt nice and fresh. (This was also before the new fancy, tilt-in windows and my mom would actually remove the windows to clean them thoroughly...yeah, she's pretty much my hero.)
So, having this example, when I became a young wife, I did the same. I wiped down walls and baseboards. I washed curtains. I pretty much rocked our little 1000 square feet starter home.
And then we had children.
I believe the stupidest statement I ever said to my husband was on the trip to move to Tennessee. I was anticipating being very bored staying home with our then-only-child and told him that if I didn't "stay in perfect shape, keep the house spotless and have dinner on the table every night, then I would just be a worthless human being."
Oh, Annie, Annie, Annie...
Needless to say, I ate my words within the first week. Oh, and the second week, we found out we were pregnant with Rachel.
So now with three kids, I look around at this impossibly dirty house and the thought of Spring cleaning the thing overwhelms me. I follow a couple cleaning blogs...and by "follow," I mean enjoy reading and rarely follow their advice... It really is a challenge for me to weekly clean. The seasonal stuff is simply mind-blowing.
I asked my friend Susie, who also has three little ones, if she was planning on Spring cleaning this year. She snorted coffee out her nose.
"Oh, you were serious??" she said.
Hmmm...maybe I'm not alone here.
Regardless of the impossibility, I've decided to give it a try, simply because we are going to have some painting and other simple renovation done this summer and to declutter and clean up our trouble spaces will make that job easier. Yesterday, I started on our master bedroom.
In two days, I got both closets done. I didn't sort through clothes and I didn't wipe down walls. But I did get two garbage bags full of trash out and a good box of donations started. To me, that's progress.
What did I do with my little children during that time?? I'm so glad you asked.
They basically trashed their room next door.
|They asked me to get their tents out and went "camping." You can see Rachel in the far right on this pic.|
|I called for Caleb and you can see his little head peaking out of the tent, right under the yellow pillow. "Yeeeessss??"|
So on the upside, our closets are organized and put together better than ever. On the downside, I'm behind on all my other chores and the rest of the house is a wreck. I'm thinking that, at this rate, I should get each space done in about a week...maybe a week and a half. Which would put me wrapping up my Spring Cleaning around Christmas. :)
Seriously though, do you clean seasonally? Do you have any secrets to cleaning with kids?
If you need me, I'll be vacuuming the ceiling fan...which hasn't been cleaned since...oh, never mind. :)