Several years ago a “sister” blog ( theheartof thehousehold.blogspot.com) asked its readers for their best housekeeping hints. Kim C. wrote the following comments. I’m guessing Kim is truly the Voice of Experience. As you’ll see, it’s pretty clear she must have more than one or two children!
“Clothes do not get washed with every wearing. It’s often just not necessary, and it can be poor stewardship since laundering wears out clothes more quickly. [Cleaningproz note: Where do you think all that dryer lint comes from, if not your clothes?] We usually do a quick visual inspection and maybe a sniff test. Obviously, certain items are excluded from this policy. Please tell me you assumed that without me having to say it.
“Towels don’t get washed every time. With a few exceptions, we think a towel can be used many times before it needs washing. Maybe I should have mentioned that we each have our own personal keep-your-hands-off bath towel.
“Children do not necessarily have to bathe daily. It’s just not necessary. Little ones don’t geet body odor like big people, and the ones in diapers tend to get the important parts washed several times a day anyway. so the smaller people in our house–the ones who need constant supervision in the tub–get bathed on an as-needed basis.
“It’s ok for kids to sleep in their clothes. Really, if they spent all day indoors and their clothes are clean, they don’t need to change into PJs. If they don’t care, I don’t care. It’s one less thing to do in the evening and one less piece of laundry to wash.”
So what’s your take on these housekeeping hints from Kim? Are you thinking, Finally someone has the courage to say what I’ve been thinking all along? Or are you saying, Ewwww! That’s disgusting? Either way, please share your comments below. We’d love to hear from you.
An organized closet not only makes you feel good every time you open the door (what a joy to behold!), but it saves you so much precious time. (It also makes your house just feel cleaner). But where to start?
- If your budget permits, buy a set or two of new hangers first off. Best bet? The “velvet” hangers at Costco (also at Amazon). They are $19.95 for 40 regular and 10 pants hangers. They have a “velvet” finish on them which prevents clothing from slipping off. There’s just something about having a matched set of hangers that really motivates you to spruce up your closet!
- Next decide on 2-4 major clothing groups. For instance, tops, bottoms, jackets.
- Hang each group together separated by extra hangers.
- Now when you remove an item from your closet, put its hanger with the extra hangers. This not only serves as a divider for your clothing but is a great help on laundry day.
- When you are doing laundry, take a handful of the hangers to the laundry room so you can hang your clothes as they come out of the dryer and put them back in the closet.
- After you get accustomed to keeping everything in its proper group, you may want to further break down each group by type (short sleeves, long sleeves, tees, blouses, etc.) or style (long pants, cropped, short, etc.)
- Browse Amazon.com, ContainerStore.com, or other web sites for products to keep your shoes, handbags and jewelry organized. There’s so much good stuff to choose from.
This is really a bare bones organization technique, but it works and–perhaps more importantly–it’s easy to maintain. So try it and let us know what you think!
Now, Organized Reader, what do you have to share on this topic? We’d love to hear from you!
If this program (see previous posts) is new for you children, it is especially important that you start out slowly. Do not overwhelm the poor kid with demands. Add responsibilities slowly, one at a time.
- You both will be a lot happier if you make the room as easy as possible to keep neat and orderly. Get down on your knees–c’mon it won’ t hurt you–and look at the world from a child’s-eye view. There’s a lot you can do to make cleanup and maintenance easier. For starters, you can:
- Lower the clothes rack in the closets.
- Put in plenty of large hooks for play clothes, night-clothes, backpack, etc.
- Put dividers in drawers.
- Label drawers with words or pictures so things get put away where they belong. This is also great pre-reading instruction.
- Use several smaller toy containers rather than one large one. With luck, only 20 rather than 50 toys will be dumped on the floor.
- To minimize bed making use a duvet and fitted bottom sheet. But remember even with this simplification it’s difficult for little people to make a bed!
- Designate one drawer for junk. Bet you have one!
- A clear plastic shoe bag hung over a door is a great place to store craft supplies, small toys, rolled up underwear, hair ribbons and other small things.
- Use sturdy clear plastic storage containers in several sizes for toys, art supplies, etc. Stackable, covered ones are best. Label them (see #4). What can be seen won’t be dumped–maybe.
- Put a bed on stilts or hang it from the ceiling to give him a generous play and storage space underneath.
- Consider rotating toys occasionally. This cuts down on the number to be put away and gives your little ones “new” ones to play with when they’re brought out of hiding.
Some Words of Caution
What do you mean when you say, “Clean up your room”? Now, that may sound like a dumb question, but your concept of a clean room is probably completely different from your child’s idea. Too often we ask a child to do something–put the dirty dishes in the dishwasher, mow the lawn, dust the living room–and then get angry because the finished product doesn’t match our mental image of what it should look like. Spend time demonstrating specifically what needs to be done and how to do it. Babies do not come into this world with an instinctive knowledge of how to make a bed. Teach necessary skills. Assume nothing.
Just one final word” Try to keep things in perspective. Junior’s room may look like the aftermath of Hurricane Hilda, but how much is it really going to matter ten years from now?
And now, our Savvy Reader, what ideas do you have? Won’t you share them with our readers?