Gearing Up for, gulp, Spring Cleaning



With the gorgeous warm breezes we’ve enjoyed these past few days come whispers of worry in my mind:  Spring is right around the corner.  And Spring Cleaning posts and reminders have been springing up more quickly than the weeds surely will in my garden.

 

Ugh.

 

I’ve admitted it to you all before:  I am NOT a fan of cleaning.  I am a good and capable cook and baker.  I garden reasonably well.  I even enjoy mending.  But, alas, I didn’t inherit any kind of super-tidy gene.

 

Neither do I like to wallow in filth.

 

So what’s a girl to do?

 

Here are five of my best tips for getting the job done when it’s nowhere on your “like” list:

 

Figure out your peak time of day.  For me, that’s first thing in the morning.  Like, FIRST THING in the morning.  Before other people wake up.  Before I have to get kids on the bus.  It is insane the number of things I can accomplish before 8:30am.

 

Dedicate your “peak time” to the task at hand.  I may be able to scrub my kitchen, scour the baths, prep dinner, unload the dishwasher, and deal with two loads of laundry by 8:30 am… but only if I never open the laptop.  Recognize your weaknesses and don’t even go there.

 

Do a couple quick things first.  Throw a load of laundry in.  Straighten up a stack of papers.  Sweep under the table.  Whatever.  Do a couple things that you can easily check off your list in five minutes or less.  We’re building momentum here!

 

Take care of yourself.  Don’t neglect feeding yourself.  Drink plenty of water.  Stretch and take some deep breaths.  Yes, you have a lot to accomplish.  You’re not going to do a better job if you’re malnourished and cranky.

 

Tell someone.  This is two-fold– tell someone ahead of time, and it builds accountability.  That’s a good thing!  But, don’t stop there.  Tell someone AFTER you’ve tackled the chore.  Isn’t this like soliciting compliments?  Absolutely.  And you should not be ashamed to do so.  I always joke that one of my best secrets to our happy marriage is that I TELL my husband about the things I do.  I don’t expect him to notice every little thing on his own.  But, if I tell him, I’m pretty much assured that I’ll get mad props for all my efforts.  And that feels good. :)

 

How about you?  Are you naturally a “clean freak”?  (And I say that with the utmost respect, truly!!)  Do you have any tricks for making an unsavory task a bit easier to tackle?

 

(Be sure to check out Alicia’s 12 Spring Cleaning tasks you can accomplish in ten minutes or less over at BlogHer’s Life Well Lived page!  While you’re there, be sure to enter the sweepstakes for a chance to win a Kindle Fire, too!)

 

I’m joining iDreamofClean and 9 other bloggers in the Spring Cleaning Challenge for a chance to win some incredible prizes!

 

 

 

 

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4 comments to Gearing Up for, gulp, Spring Cleaning

  • Laraba

    I don’t even try to spring clean in the conventional sense…as in, try to clean the house from top to bottom. It would be a hopeless task. I do get enthusiastic about cleaning at different times of the year and run with it. I should say it is more common that I want to declutter than deep clean. Our kids are being trained to do a lot of cleaning but there are still things that NEVER get done, like washing walls (unless a particular wall experiences some kind of kid catastrophe.)
    One thing I am grateful for is that my mother is not a neat freak AT ALL. I say that because I grew up with a fair amount of mess. I’m an engineer and my nature is to have our house very neat, but it is impossible with seven kids and a husband who likes to have “his stuff” out in the open because he is visual and wants the visual reminder to do things. The clutter gets on my nerves but the floors are cleared every night by the kids and the clutter is mostly confined to horizontal surfaces. If I had grown up in a very neat house I think I’d have a harder time with the reality of our lives. :-).

    • I go through fits and spurts myself, Laraba, and I’m trying to embrace that that’s who I am. I am the daughter and sister of very clean, very tidy women and, I must admit, this leaves me feeling like a failure too frequently. BUT. My husband is perfectly content. My children are happy and cared for. I’m working hard to accept that my strengths may lie in other areas, but that doesn’t make them less valuable. :)

  • Hi! Nice to meet you through Life Well Lived! I also did this “LWL” post this week — it was a fun topic. I love your tips– especially finding the peak time of the day to get things done.

    I just returned from a week in Colorado where I was visiting for my youngest grandson’s first birthday and my daughter’s bridal shower is this weekend — busy times at my house!

    I appreciated reading Alicia’s 10 minute Spring Cleaning tips as I need to organize myself in small intervals this year. My biggest chore is the wardrobe switch as we have small closets in my city sized house. Wish I could figure out a way to do that in 10 minutes!

  • Great tip about taking care of yourself. I have had a couple of marathon cleaning sessions (not because I’m a clean freak but because I get so behind on cleaning) and I’ve found myself almost to the point of passing out and then I remember, oh yeah, I haven’t eaten anything today. Once that hits, it usually stops my energy to clean altogether.

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