Sunday, June 26, 2011

Let's talk a bit about Cleaning and Organizing!

Since I started posting on the Nest, I started doing a lot of lurking and quite a bit of posting on the Cleaning and Organizing board. I've seen numerous posts about asking how people keep their homes clean and organized so I thought I would dedicate a post to how we keep our household clean and organized.

First of all, I'll preface by saying that I do most of the cleaning and cooking around here. It just works for us. Jon works an hour away from home. I work 3 miles away-so ten minutes on a bad day. When I get home, I have time to start dinner, do my daily cleaning (which I'll explain in a minute) and take care of our pup before Jon even walks through the door. I would rather get stuff done around here and that way when Jon gets home we can eat dinner and spend the rest of the evening together. This schedule just works for us, not saying that it works for everyone. It also works for us now. When our family grows, it will more than likely be altered a bit.

The first thing I'll touch on is the cleaning schedule.

Sunday-Laundry day! Every other week, I wash our bed sheets. Other than that, it's pretty basic. Sundays are usually dedicated to laundry just because we're usually home on Sundays, but we can still do things while the laundry is getting done.

Monday-Dusting and vacuuming. I used to term this "Living Room & Hallway", but I found that it's easier to just dust and vacuum everywhere. I also make sure to take out all the trash so Jon can take it to the curb when he gets home.

Tuesday-Kitchen. I mop the floor, clean the counters w/all purpose cleaner and cabinet fronts. I wipe down the fridge, inside and out.

Wednesday-Bathroom. Mop and sweep, wipe down the counter, clean the mirrors, clean the shower, and clean the toilet.

Thursday-Recap Day. One more sweep of the whole house-vacuuming and dusting. Take care of anything that needs organized-i.e. our office mail slots.

Sunday-Reggie Day. Clean out his crate, give him medicine (once a month), brush his teeth, clip his nails, and brush his coat.

Daily-Do the dishes and sweep the kitchen after dinner. I also do one total sweep of the house before bed every night-take any dishes to the kitchen, pick up Reggie's toys, etc. I use a daily shower spray every morning, too.

Next up is the organizing aspect of the household.

-We keep several binders in the office. One for our home-copies of our home inspection, remodels we've done, warranty information, etc. One for our financial documents-past statements, tax information, etc. One for our personal uses-our doctor visits, Reggie's papers, etc. We also have a lock box with our important documents-marriage license copy, house papers, titles for our cars, etc.

-On our desktop, I keep a list of things that need done for the house every week, month, quarterly, and annually.

-Our cabinets in the kitchen are organized, as well. I keep liked items together, of course. I have one cabinet for baking needs-spices, cake mixes, flour, sugar, etc. One cabinet for food-pasta, canned foods, boxed foods, and our basket of snacks. We have a cabinet for our dishes, pots and pans. We have a cabinet for our glasses. We have a cabinet for our small appliances, Foreman grill, and our tupperware. Our last cabinet has our random things-season items and serving dishes for example.

-We only have 3 drawers in our kitchen. One has our silverware separated with a Rubbermaid separator. One drawer has another drawer separator that houses our random utensils, corn cob holders, knives, etc. Our last drawer is our junk drawer. It still has an organizer in it. It houses our batteries, a flash light, a lighter, etc.

-Our pantry is relatively small because our water heater is in there. We still have four small shelves and one long shelf. Our small shelves have a our tool boxes (soon-there will just be a small tool box in there-our big one will be in our new shed!) and a dust pan on one shelf. Another shelf has refills for paper towels. Another shelf has all of our cleaning supplies with the exception of our bathroom supplies. The top shelf has light bulbs and our air freshner refills. The floor of the pantry has our brooms and mops.

-Our bathroom vanity has a canvas bin that holds my hair dryer, straightener, and like items. I also have my make up bag down there. I also store the daily shower cleaner in there as well.

-We have a small linen closet in the bathroom which has 3 shelves. One shelf has miscellaneous items-such as beach towels, sun screen, Kleenex, etc. The middle shelf has all of our towels and wash clothes. The top shelf has 3 canvas bins. One that has all of our laundry things in it-detergent, dryer sheets, wrinkle releaser, stain remover, and lingerie bag. One has our cleaning supplies in it-toilet bowl cleaner, bathroom cleaner, Magic Eraser, sponge, and some spare Chlorox wipes. The last one holds more random items-ponchos, Reggie items (tooth brush/tooth paste, etc), and other miscellaneous items I can't think of right now.

That gives you the basics of our organizing!

Now our final thing I want to talk about is our meals and our meal planning!

I don't usually have a set day that we go grocery shopping-but we try to go together.

Throughout the week, I'll write down our staple food and non-food items that I see we're running low on, such as milk, butter, paper towels, etc. Then when we decide to go to the store-I take a dry erase board that hangs on our fridge and our shopping list magnet pad and go into the office. On the desktop, I keep a spread sheet of things we know we like to eat and also recipes we have flagged to try. We try to have one new recipe every week. Most of the time they're delicious-but sometimes they are a bust (i.e. Pizza Sloppy Joes-GROSS.).

The other thing I do before I start making a meal plan is to look and see what we may have left over that we don't normally buy. For example, we don't usually keep ricotta cheese, but if we had lasagna one night the past week, I'll try to make another dish using ricotta over the next few weeks to ensure we don't waste it.

From there, I make a menu plan. I allow for one night of going out because that's usually how it works-and it's usually Friday nights. I then use our meal plan to come up with our grocery list. I then do a sweep of the food cabinet, pantry (for cleaning supplies) and bathroom (toilet paper, toiletries, cleaning supplies). We usually go to Wal-Mart. But one week a month we'll go to Marsh, a local store, and stock up on meat-we've found that Marsh has better quality and much better prices when it comes to the meat department.

So there's the long winded version! Geez, sorry! Hope it helps someone though!! :)

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