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Work at Home Moms House Cleaning Tips
As a work from home mom of 4 who is with me ALL day, people often wonder how I can do it all. So I decided to share some of my “work at home mom home cleaning tips” with you.
Be reasonable and lower your expectations for chores.
Remember…you are a working mom. You get to do it from home, but you also do it under the feet of small children. You deserve a pat on the back, not guilt.
Decide what is important to you and your family and focus on those tasks.
For example…in my house, the kitchen is always cleaned quickly when it is dirty. My “ick factor”
there is a dirty sink. Also, we are in that room more than any other. Bathrooms and kitchens are more important than other rooms because of the hygiene factor. Dust or children’s toys under your feet? Ah, who cares? Also, as my sister, mother of four, always says, stepping on Legos is free acupressure. My husband, on the other hand, likes floors. The whole house could be a pig, but if the floors are clean, the house is clean for him. So I try to vacuum before he gets home.
What makes your home clean? Make sure these tasks are done, which for most people means a simple routine that you do without thinking. As for the rest…
Delegate, outsource or defer.
Decide what you can delegate to your husband, kids, or teenager who wants to make a few bucks. In my opinion, the best way to spend $20 on your home business is to pay a mom’s helper to come in for several hours to clean or play with the kids while you run the business. Make sure you have a long to-do list ready so you don’t waste time checking email or reading blogs. (Who me?)
Your children can be paid surprisingly small amounts for cleaning that goes beyond their regular chores. Don’t feel guilty about doing this. I know a 6 year old who is richer than a Jabba the Hutt Lego set because he made money vacuuming. Ahem.
Put off tasks that take the same amount of time to complete, whether they are done daily or weekly. It takes longer to do the dishes the longer they sit. Vacuuming and dusting take the same amount of time regardless of whether they are done daily or weekly.
And outsourcing…as soon as you can afford it, pay someone to handle the household chores while you focus on more important tasks. And if you can’t do that, invite someone on a playdate. It’s amazing how much energy you get pumped up when company comes over and how quickly you can clean up too!
Teach your children to clean up after themselves.
This is not a strict parent. It will do your future daughters-in-law a favor. Even a 2-year-old child
can be gently trained to put dirty clothes in the barrier. It helps when you keep one in their room. Make it a routine, make a song about it, do what you have to do.
A child as young as 3 can be taught to pick up toys (sometimes he needs a little supervision to stay on track), bring dirty dishes to the sink, wipe up spills, etc.
A 5-6 year old can be taught to dust, clean glass surfaces, sweep under the table and even vacuum.
Use the if/then technique.
“Oh, you want yogurt? When you pick up those books, you might have some.” “We’ll have time to go to the park if we get all these toys picked up”…you get the picture.
And what about the man? Well, my personal standard is… if it doesn’t get in the hamper, it doesn’t get washed. Your mileage may vary.
Use keyboard shortcuts.
If it’s a nice day, have the kids eat lunch or snacks outside. No table, chairs and floor to clean.
Reserve cleaning bathrooms for when the toddler is in the tub. You have to be there anyway.
Remember to use a completely non-toxic cleaning agent.
The best time to clean the shower or bathtub is right after use…the hot steaming water removes all the dirt. Open your mail on top of the trash can. Throw away all trash immediately.
And here’s a word of caution. Don’t run into the trap of crazy women during nap time or after bedtime. You need this time to pamper yourself (if you’re lucky enough to have kids who still nap!) and spend some quiet time alone or with your man.
Working from home Being a mother is full of challenges, but with creativity and flexibility you can have a thriving business and a tidy home.
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