Sunday, March 10, 2013

Cleaning Challenge with a fun twist

Ok folks! I am finally back! So, let’s see….where to begin? Well, seeing that cleaning out an over flowing spare room was a big kicker for me getting back to the blog I will start with a cleaning challenge I “followed” recently.

Cleaning challenges….GROAN!! I have a rhythm to cleaning the little farm house. And it works for me. But what happens is I neglect the same handful of spaces that need more than just a dusting or a mopping. So I came across several cleaning challenges on Pinterest: 21 day cleaning challenge, 30 day challenge, and clean house in a week (ha! That’s so laughable).  My biggest issue with the challenges was they didn’t fit me and my house’s needs. Nor did they work around the idea of having a very energetic two year old that can undo a clean space in the blink of an eye. So, I had to make a list of areas to clean to fit my house’s needs, and fit my ability to clean said spaces all the while taking care of the kiddo and the everyday chores I had to do. I started out on January 2nd. Well, by January 5th I had already missed a few tasks.

Call it lazy, call it life, call it what you may….I lacked the motivation. I had more fun planning the areas to clean. But then once I finalized my list, there it was glaring at me to get with the program and get things crossed off. And sometimes….being told what needs to be done makes doing them a hard thing to do, even if you are the one saying to do it. I was giving into my own laziness. Making excuses. And since I was my own “boss” I totally understood that I had other things to do and my excuses were very convincing to myself….

Then I had a great idea. On my New Year’s Resolution list was my most favorite resolution: do more crafts and use ideas off my Pinterest boards. So I started paring up the tasks I had listed for the cleaning challenge with crafts, tips, and tricks I had pinned. Next thing I know, I actually got them all done!

So here are my “tips” for setting out on a cleaning challenge.

1. Don’t follow someone else’s list completely. Just use it as a guide. There were places on the lists I found that I hadn’t even thought of organizing. Jewelry box, for example. Then there were places to clean that didn’t exist in my home..garage for example.  Then there were tasks that I nearly fell on the floor laughing at: clean windows on outside…. Sure! Its only 12 degrees and snowing, no bother!

2. Don’t designate areas to a specific day. Just write them on a list and give yourself a set number of days to complete them. I have certain days I must do regular household chores, and those chores take up the whole day. So there wasn’t a way for me to tackle “cleaning the computer room” on the day I am swamped with laundry. Also, for those who work 40 (or more) hours a week…you might not have the time to do them. And why should you not be afforded the joy of completing a cleaning challenge?

3. Include small tasks that go along with every day cleaning. Using the above example…with my big laundry day in mind I put on my task list to clean the washing machine. (A tip I found on Pinterest) I was already there, washing a million loads of laundry, so why not clean the washing machine.

4. Think of the time frame it takes to complete a task you want to include. On one list I saw “Clean Attic” Well, for starters I don’t have an attic. And secondly…in my opinion that would take more than one day and with a two year old running around…. Yeah let’s not go there… So, pick time friendly tasks. Like clean the microwave. Only takes a few minutes.

Lemons and Rosemary:
My simmer pot reward for the task of deep cleaning the stove.
Made the house smell fantastic!
5. Pick a reward for EACH task. Yes, yes the biggest reward is a clean and organized space, but if you are like me…I need a bit more than just that to get me going especially if its stuff I have been neglecting for a long time. If completing the task itself was a reward option for me, then I wouldn’t need a cleaning challenge to get it done. My reward for organizing the shelves in my laundry room was to paint a sign inspired by a pin on Pinterest. Your reward doesn’t have to match the task. You could reward yourself with a movie night because you dusted all the cobwebs throughout the house. I chose crafts and Pinterest inspired tips because that kind of stuff suits my fancy.


Ok, so there…a fun and executable way to tackle a cleaning challenge.


So, now that you might have fun doing a cleaning challenge, and actually get through an entire list of areas to clean…what do you think? Do you have any tips or pointers?


Happy cleaning and God Bless Y’all!




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