When I introduced my Stay At Home Plan to Georgia Boy, one of the first expenses I said we could cut was the cleaning lady. I promised that I would do ALL of the cleaning and keep up with it according to a timely schedule. Pardon me while I roll around on the floor laughing at this memory.
After several months of using the new baby as an excuse, followed by the holidays as another excuse, I finally decided it was time to get this cleaning thing down. I was tired of feeling guilty every time I walked by the toothpaste globs in the sink or noticed the boy writing his ABCs in the dust on the end tables.
Thus I devised a plan. Cue the evil villain music here.
I made a list of items that needed to be done weekly, monthly, and whenever-the-heck-I-find-the-time-so-probably-never items. I took into consideration that I would be the only person working on this cleaning list since my children are too small to help. But believe you me, they will have broom in hand as soon as I think they are up to the task. A great bonus is that Sidekick is still army crawling instead of walking so she is my swiffer for the hardwood floors. Score!
I also made a list of quick cleaning jobs that I could do in the kitchen each night while cleaning up after dinner. This would be to keep that area of the house from becoming an unholy mess as it tends to become since there are several people eating there every day three times a day.
Thus was born my evil cleaning plan.
Monday - Vacuum carpet floors
Tuesday - Dust (This is the day I hate most, in case you were wondering)
Wednesday - Toilets, empty trash cans & *Monthly Job
Thursday - Bathroom sinks & Counters
Friday - Sweep wood floors
Saturday - Mirrors & Glass table tops
Sunday - REST! It's in the Bible. Seriously, you can look it up.
*Monthly Jobs are Tubs/Showers, Windows, Mopping. These happen sometimes on schedule and sometimes not. Dangit Jim, I'm a mother not a miracle worker.
Monday - Countertops
Tuesday - Wipe down cabinets
Wednesday - Cooktop/Sink
Thursday - Oven
Friday - Stainless Steel appliances
Saturday - Microwave
Sunday - REST! See above.
After implementing this schedule I can honestly say that I've been able to keep up with the cleaning and feel good about it. I've always felt that there is a certain pride in ownership in cleaning one's own house but I never felt like I could crack the code on how to do it successfully. Having a schedule has helped tremendously.
Now I realize that for some people the money spent on a cleaning lady is worth every penny to them and I'm not going to argue that point. To each his own! When I was a working mommy I too had a cleaning lady and it was worth it to me to be able to spend those few precious hours with my kids instead of shoooing them away so I could clean the house. But, alas, when we became a one income family I knew my days of Ms. Charlotte's cleaning services were over and it was time for me to do it on my own. Believe me, there are days when I miss Ms. Charlotte but I've discovered that I'm pretty darn good at this myself.