Spring cleaning is afoot in the Foote household. I last gave everything in the house a really good clean the week before Noah was born, and he’s four months old now. So the big jobs probably need another go over.
Make a list
The first thing I do is make a list. I break every room down into little tasks that can be ticked off as I go. For example, in the kitchen I count cupboards and drawers, so each one gets crossed out as it’s cleaned. That way, I can feel a sense of achievement quite early on, and that is a great driver for continuing to get the room list closed out.
Employ your toddler
James is a dab hand at vacuuming, and has his own little Dyson to use alongside mine. He can sort the pans into shapes, sizes, and other useful groups.
His laundry sorting is interesting and I only ask him to sort the load into four piles, but as you can see, he doesn’t only stick to organising it. Never lose the opportunity to make something random into a hat, right?
But when I’m wiping, dusting or generally cleaning with a cloth, I usually give James a cloth too, and we merrily clean together.
If employing the toddler fails, distract the toddler
Carpet cleaning is not easy with a toddler in the house. I have to give James a little task like this matching game with his name while I’m busy, and then we go out.
If “get off the carpet please” isn’t a phrase you want to hear yourself saying 15,000, 000 times in one hour, try to do it first thing in the morning and not come home till it’s near enough bedtime. Walking on clean, wet carpets makes them dirty again.
Sling the baby
There might not be a better invention than the sling. I’ve slung James and Noah since they were a few days old and that is pretty much the only way I have got stuff done. My babies love to go along for the ride, I have found!
Chuck things out
Wow! It turns out I am a bit of a frying pan collector. I just threw away three, and still have one for almost every occasion you might like to consider cooking something in a shallow pan.
I also managed to clear out a fair amount of food. Considering I just did this in November, I think it’s really time I a) began looking at use by dates a bit more closely while I’m shopping, and b) find recipes that complement others, because it turns out I don’t use chopped dates in things after I baked one cake.
I have also cleared out a massive load of cosmetics thanks to a blog I read a while ago. Sorry for not being able to credit you, I forget who you are, but I was amazed to read about the bacteria that grows on make up. Bluergh.
I gave all our light bulbs and fixtures a wipe over. Happily we are suddenly not living like pit ponies in semi darkness any more.
And my top tip, so you can learn from my mistake…
See those little threads? Tie them together on both ends of the curtain before you put your curtain in the washing machine. Seriously. Re threading those little things is time consuming and makes me never want to wash curtains ever again.
For more top tips (though the trend is to call them hacks now, what’s with that?) see Curry’s spring cleaning advice to transform your home!