January 3, 2014
Start Here. – Weekly Cleaning Tasks
Happy 2014! Let’s make this the year we finally get it all clean and organized!
It’s week one of Start Here. – I’m so excited to start with you! If you didn’t see the first post and grab the free printable, go back to the post for the full overview and explanation here. If you want to follow along on Instagram or post your own progress, I’d love it if you used the hash tag #cmstarthere. You can go here to see the post earlier this week that explains the daily cleaning tasks.
You’ll notice on the schedule/calendar that there are 6 rotating cleaning tasks for the week – one every day Monday – Saturday. These are tasks that take 15-30 minutes and will keep the house tidy. I have found that cleaning the house all on one day is futile. Doing a little bit every day is the way to keep it cleaned up most of the time. Want to try it for yourself? Keep reading for a little explanation…
Mondays – Bathrooms
If you’ve been following along for more than a week, you know that every Monday I clean bathrooms. Below is my complete cleaning process to get all four bathrooms in our house clean in 15 minutes or less (here’s a post too). I don’t wash the floors because I wash them on Thursdays – I find that this really cuts down on bathroom cleaning time. Here’s a post that shows how I approach the bathroom cleaning (and speed clean).
I like to keep my bathroom cleaning supplies in each bathroom, you might prefer to tote a cleaning bucket or caddy from bathroom to bathroom. You’ll need:
- your favorite all-purpose cleaner (look for non-toxic cleaners – they work just as well)
- glass/mirror cleaner
- toilet cleaner/brush
- microfiber window cloth (my preference for mirrors)
- 3+ microfiber cleaning cloths for each bathroom (1 for counters, 1 for tub/shower, 1 for toilet)
Tuesdays – Dust House
Rule #1 for me with dusting is to only keep out things that we love and need.
If it just collects dust, it’s not worth moving every week to dust under. Especially with little kids, I have a minimal amount of “stuff” on display just so I don’t have to worry about anything happening to it. Having uncluttered surfaces makes dusting so much easier. And dusting weekly makes it simple to dust the next week.
My favorite dusting products? Grab your microfiber!
My preference for dusting are microfiber cloths and a dusting mitt. I also use a large extendable reach duster for cobwebs and hard to reach ceilings and corners. This can be an expensive tool, but if you have lots of tall ceilings it’s worth it. I also use a natural beeswax polish to polish and condition some furniture as needed. I work from top-down and quickly go through the house dusting all the hard surfaces, staircase and railings, tvs and furniture. For the weekly dusting, I move quickly and do what I can in 15 minutes. If I have extra time (beyond that 15 minutes), I’ll do a deep clean dusting or fit in rotating cleaning tasks like dusting light fixtures or ceiling fans.
Wednesdays – Vacuum
On Wednesdays I haul out the vacuum and vacuum all the carpets in the house. I also use a floor sweeper (shown in my favorites) for the hardwood flooring in our house during the week and I use the attachments for corners and edges on vacuum day. Curious why I vacuum on Wednesdays? Tuesday is dusting day so Wednesday is the day to clean up the dust from Tuesday. Simple as that.
What’s my method?
Move quickly – start on the second floor with the room that’s the farthest away from the stairs. I vacuum all the bedrooms, bathrooms, the upstairs hallway, stairs, and then the lower level. The lower level is mostly hardwood, so I vacuum corners and do a quick vacuum of the carpeted rooms. This ensures that all the dust and dog hair is picked up and the floors are ready for washing tomorrow.
My favorite floor cleaning products?
Most importantly, find a vacuum cleaner that works for your budget and home. I love my Dyson vacuum cleaners – they are amazing! That being said, whatever vacuum cleaner picks up the dirt and keeps your floors clean, use it and implement it in your weekly cleaning routine. I also like to use a broom or sweeper in between vacuuming to keep the hardwood floors clean in between weekly vacuuming. The sweeper gets pulled out daily to keep the dog hair and dust bunnies at bay. I also like having a steam carpet cleaner to clean individual rooms, stairs, and high traffic areas in between professional carpet cleanings. I just use hot water and vinegar (equal parts vinegar and water) as the cleaning solution – no soapy residue and it lifts stains easily.
Thursdays – Wash Floors
I wash floors on Thursdays because all the hard floors were vacuumed or swept on Wednesday. Yes, it would be better to vacuum and wash floors all on the same day, but I just don’t have that kind of time. So, I split it up and vacuum on Wednesdays and wash floors on Thursdays.
What’s my Method?
I’ve experimented with more floor cleaning products then I’d like to admit and have finally come around to washing my floors with vinegar and water. You can read more about my technique in this post. I prefer a steam mop for tile (bathrooms and mudroom) and vinyl ( laundry room). I use a refillable spray mop on days when I only have time for a quick wash or if the floors need to be washed before Thursday. I use water, vinegar, and essential oils in the spray mop as well. Why do I use the water and vinegar method? It’s the only floor cleaner that I’ve found that gets up everything and doesn’t leave a sticky residue or a film. I add the essential oils so my house doesn’t smell like a pickle factory (I don’t like the smell of vinegar – at all). And in all my research, I’ve found that vinegar and water is what is professionally recommended by most flooring companies and installers. (Note: if you have waxed hardwood floors DO NOT use vinegar/water.)
Fridays – Catch-All Day
I designate Friday as my catch-all day. What does catch-all mean? Depending on the day and week, I use Fridays to get caught up on uncompleted tasks, menu planning, bill paying, laundry, a rotating cleaning task, or I just take the day off. I like going into the weekend with a clean house so I can soak up all the family time possible.
Saturdays – Sheets/Towels
Saturday is sheets and towels day. I find that doing a couple loads of sheets and towels on Saturdays helps in the laundry department. If everything works the way I want it to, I wash a load of white towels, a load of colored towels and one or two loads of sheets. I start right away in the morning and then by early afternoon clean sheets are on the beds and clean towels are folded and put away. It isn’t a non-stop Saturday of laundry, I just tend to the laundry when it needs to be switched from the washer to dryer and then from the dryer to folded and put away.
So how’s the routine-ing coming along? Any questions on the weekly cleaning tasks?
Want to join in on the fun? Grab a FREE cleaning and organizing calendar for January and give it a go. Follow along all month for motivational posts and tips to keep up with the daily and weekly tasks. New here? I’ll be explaining the tasks more in the next week – it’ll be fun and easy to implement, I promise!
Go here to grab your FREE calendar for January 2014!
Want to make 2014 the year that you cleaned and organized everything? Me too!
(If you like this calendar style, you’ll love The Simplified Life Series in my shop!)
Thanks so much for sharing your methods! I love a clean house but have gotten lazy about doing routine cleanings. My daughter and a friend and I have printed your calendar and plan to follow along and encourage one another–thanks!
Hi Becky! I love your blog. I was thinking last night, how great it would be if you came out with an app for my phone and ipad! It could have the calendar for every month and any projects/tasks. That way I could check off the items as I go. I love to check off! LOL! It could be as simple as that, and cheap or as detailed as you might like, and you could charge more. It would just be an extra way for us to follow your routine. Anyway, I am getting back into the swing of the routine. Happy New Year!
Becky SaysPost author
working on it 😉
Heather Nash Says
I am really impressed by your cleaning schedule. I am not sure I am going to be able to follow it exactly, I am going to definitely give it a try. I was unable to find the floor sweeper in your favorites as you mentioned. Could you give more information on the floor sweeper you use on your wood floors? I just moved into a house with wood floors and am trying to find the best way to maintain them. Thank you!
Becky SaysPost author
I love this one from Casabella:
Marcie Millard Says
I discovered you last month and now I’m one of your biggest fans! Maybe even a little obsessed… 🙂
I’m trying to print out the cleaning schedule for January but when I download it from Google docs, the text in the individual days is just a blur and won’t print. I am a mac user and didn’t know if anyone else had mentioned this as a problem? If you have any possible suggestions for how I can make it work, I’d love to hear them.
Thank you so much for ALL that you do!!
Becky SaysPost author
Thanks Marcie! MAC OSX defaults printables to preview instead of Adobe Reader. Make sure you have Adobe Reader – you can get the latest version for free here: http://get.adobe.com/reader/
Once you have verified reader is on your computer then make sure that you are opening the printable in reader and not preview. I also sent you the printable via email – let me know if you have any questions!
Hello there. I find it interesting how that laundry seems to be such a big issue to a lot of people. When I first got married 28 years ago, I had a ‘wringer’ washing machine! That is labour intensive. Yes, there were automatics around, but we were given a wringer. Basically, the washer has a tub where the clothes get swished around in clean soapy water . Then you stop that and pull each piece of clothing out and push it through 2 electically powered rolling pin things that compress the water out. The clothes plop into a clean sink full of water behind the machine – that’s rinsing them out. then you have to put them back through those wringers and catch them so they don’t get full of water again. A friend of mine who comes from America said that she had only ever seen one of those in a museum! But I knew how to work one as my mother had one when I was a child and had the same size family. It was a big chore back then.
Im from NZ and have a family of 8. I do average 3-4 washes every single day in my 8kg automatic. Most of the time each wash is hung up on our rotating clothesline (great for drying in the wind) and brought in when the kids come home from school at 3.30pm and it is folded then. I would have dirty washing coming out of my ears if I didn’t do it every day and what about stains? How do you avoid them from setting if its only done once or twice a week? I know it sounds a lot, but I think it really doesn’t take long at all 🙂
I would love to start using the microfiber cloths. I have tried finding some listed in that blog about how to use them, but haven’t been able to. Can I just grab some to get started? I would really like to get away from paper towels. Thanks for the help!
Just found your website and WOW! I feel hope that I may be able to keep this house clean, even with the daily circus and jobs. Thank you so much for your calendar!!!
what do you mean by check floors?
Becky SaysPost author
Sweep and/or vacuum or wash if necessary.
When do do the windows ?