Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Fresh and Clean, Christmas Planning Tip #5...

Let's face it whether you are hosting Christmas festivities at your place or not, it is the one time of year where you are more likely to have extra visitors, house gets or people just dropping by. The last thing you want is to have to worry about is the state of your house. We all know that feeling of dread when you hear a knock on your door and your place resembles a bomb site, which if you have kids will likely be often.

Christmas Planning Tip #5

First things first. You have got to work on what your priorities are. I like to do this by looking at what I don't mind being missed. For me that's thing like dusting, windows and glass doors (except for the front of the house) and ironing. Those things are low on my list of priorities, I'm not saying they don't need to get done, I just do them when I get a chance after other things are handled or the night before people are coming over! 

From there you need to work out what is most important. For me it's made beds, laundry, main living area floors and the kitchen. The whole house feels chaotic to me if the beds are unmade, there are piles of dirty laundry and the kitchen is a mess. And since I have a 1 year old and a two year old who both love to put everything they find in their mouths, the main living area floors is a no brainer.

Now before I continue I should tell you my top tip, there is no point cleaning around clutter, You've got to clear it out. I find it easy, I don't have an attachment to stuff. I have a few sentimental items I love, but everything else is just stuff. If it's not serving a purpose or it doesn't make me / us happy, why should it be taking up space and inevitably need to be cleaned. Put simply with four kids and a husband who travels with work, I just don't have time for that! 

Now I set up a plan. Before bed I make sure the kitchen is clean, toys all put away and any random things back where they live. Mornings go better starting with a clean slate. Every morning the kids get up, have breakfast, get dressed then make their beds. Connor even tries to! I just go along after him fixing it up. I have coffee, start a load of washing, pack lunches if the kids have school, then get dressed and make my bed. Mia and Ryan take turns unloading the dishwasher. Then I load it straight up with all the breakfast dishes. Give the benches a wipe and then the kitchen is done. Our kitchen opens straight out onto our dining and lounge rooms, right in the centre of our home and if it's messy it just flows through. 

Next I hang out the washing, scoop up all the toys that have been taken out from Mia and Ryan's room by Connor and return them, check the kids toilet and squirt in a little toilet bleach, wipe the floor with a disinfectant wipe (because boys), wipe the bathroom counter and sweep or vacuum the floor. I mop our floors after lunch when both little guys are napping so it actually has time to dry without little footprints. In between I spot clean with a microfibres cloth and hot water. Simple but effective. Now the house is clean enough in case of surprise visitors. 

It may seem like a lot but the reality is it doesn't take long at all! I save all my deeper cleaning like scrubbing the bathrooms, walls, skirting boards etc for Connors kindy days. I wait till Liam's nap time and put some music on and go as fast as I can. But over Christmas there isn't always time for a proper cleaning. If I'm really slammed I will even spray the showers with power foam after the kids get out and just go back and rinse it later. Does the job when you are in a pinch. Between that and by following my daily routine I never have to feel that dread of hearing a knock on the door and being so embarrassed and apologetic about the state of my house.

I hope the tips help you too! Any awesome quick and easy housekeeping tips you want to share, please leave me a comment.

Have you read the earlier posts in my Christmas Planning series? Make sure you catch up on my tips for gift buying, wrapping, Christmas card sending and food planning. 

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