Sunday, March 30, 2014

Method to the Madness

See, I didn't start out as a cleaner. I am sloppy by nature. As a kid, when my mom had friends over she would shut my door so as to avoid embarrassment. I just didn't care. Same in college- I'd drag home my laundry over break that I had been saving up for weeks. But things have changed out of necessity. If I were to avoid laundry altogether for a week, I would have over 8 loads. Now the cleaning happens because I am the sole cleaner. And also the mild ocd anxiety issues I have about cleaning. But as I have said before, I am QUITE lazy. Whatever I do, I must be efficient and quick. I clean the bathroom twice a week, but I'm only in there maybe 15 minutes. And this is a full clean, a full top to bottom scrubbing the floors clean. Granted I have a tiny closet-sized bathroom.
I start after bedtime. Whoever goes to the bathroom last (usually my oldest), I'll spray the bowl with cleaner after the flush. Then I pull all hand towels, get one wet, and use the wet side to wipe down the mirror, and the dry side to wipe it off. I'll throw those in the hallway, along with any towels. I shake out the bath rug, and hang that over the shower curtain rod. I'll spray down the bathtub (start at the bottom, with the drain, faucet, sides, working your way up to you don't get cleaner raining down on you. I'll then spray the sink and sides of the sink. After that, I can either go finish up with bedtime, or if kids are asleep, I'll go back with my dish gloves. Dish gloves are my Godsend. Mine are nonlatex and have a cotton lining. Fab. I scrub the toilet bowl first, in case some of it sprays off toward the floors. I then spray the toilet bowl edge and underside of the seat, wipe, spray the top of the seat and back of the lid, wipe, and then top of the tank, handle, and top of the lid and wipe. I am super unecofriendly and I use toilet paper for this toilet clean, mostly so I don't have a dirty rag to worry about. I am conscious of how much tp I use, so it's not exorbitant. Then I clean the sink, then the bathtub. I start with the top working my way to the bottom. Now comes the floor scrubbing. I spray the floor closest to the door (sometimes the walls and baseboards around them if they are dusty or dirty- usually the bottom foot of the wall or less) and wipe up. I use the same rag I used for the sink and shower, just much rinsing in hot water. If you don't clean often, maybe you should use separate rags for each section. The rag gets rinsed out thoroughly after each pass. I work in small two foot sections, mostly because the floor gets slippery if not completely rinsed. I work my way to the tub, then to the sink, and finally to the toilet. I wipe the walls first (do this one day with a white washcloth and you will never look at your toilet the same way), then the sides of the toilet, and finally the base and the floor. I rinse the rag a lot, and when I'm all done with the floor around the toilet, I'm done with the rag. That goes in the laundry. I wash my gloves off, turn on the shower to rinse everything down the drain, and job over. 
I can do this in a quick fashion, especially since I do it twice a week. Some woman on the internets was saying how you shouldn't use water when cleaning. I don't know how I feel about that.
Anyway, I've learned if you set up a method for your cleaning, a schedule per se, you will get done so much quicker, and if you clean regularly, you'll find your cleaning sessions greatly shortened in time. 
For example, cleaning your toys, etc that can be bleached. Most people do this like twice a year maybe, or only after a sickness, right? I try to do it once a month, usually on a Sunday. Sunday tends to be my cleaning day. I wait until all of my dishes are done and after bedtime, as I don't have to worry about my sink being off limits. Then I just throw all the toys that won't be harmed by water into the sink and dump a cup or so of bleach in. Then I just let it sit overnight usually, and drain it in the morning. Be sure to use a white towel or one you don't care about, since even after rinsing, some bleaching of the towel will occur.

Also once a week, when I run out of my cleaning solution, I will make up two spray bottles. I just added a bottle with a bleach solution to my arsenal, so we shall see how useful it will become.
If you try to make certain cleaning practices into habits, your house will look cleaner and you'll get quicker. Have you ever had a kid who had the stomach flu, or had it yourself? It's horrible. You will do anything to avoid it, and afterward you clean like it's your job and rent is due. I feel- why clean after it happens? Maybe cleaning beforehand like you are cleaning up after will prevent it from happening at all. 
But I could be wrong. Call me crazy.

1 comment:

  1. caveat emptor - my boss told me her mom no longer has a sense of smell because she cleaned with bleach so much when she was raising kids. be sure to ventilate well, open windows, and turn on fans. /end PSA

    i wanna play with toys. grown-ups and meetings are boring.