Are you cringing at the thought of keeping the house clean enough & tidy enough with all the kids at home all summer long? And for some of us blessed with a large family, did you ever wonder how you’re supposed to keep the house clean and tidy when you’re supervising a tribe of school-free kids AND a baby when you have literally no time, no maid or no money to hire help? Whatever your exact situation may be, dear friend, I can definitely relate.😞
So I gave it a thought of two. In my opinion, there’s a ton of options to keep the house clean enough and tidy enough this summer, even with kids at home. Let’s discover 7 of them:
#1 – Prioritize & Lighten your cleaning schedule
The idea is to twist your usual cleaning schedule and concentrate on completing only the non-negotiables. For example, my usual cleaning schedule includes vacuuming the whole house once a week. During summer? Not so much.
However, I will do everything I can to clean the kitchen counters every morning after breakfast and to deep-clean the bathrooms once a week, because these two are my non-negotiables. And because, most of all, my sweet Baby D. just began potty-training, so as of now, we’ll have 3 boys using the bathroom, if you Ladies see what I mean…
#2 – Beat procrastination once and for all
It’s summer and we, moms, deserve a copious amount of rest, right? So yes, twist your cleaning schedule, streamline your todo-list, simplify your routines. But by any mean, please do not procrastinate!
Procrastinating basic household chores such as unsetting the table after breakfast or avoiding laundry for 10 days will only cause more frustration for you… AND a mountain of undone chores to catch up with.
So, I’ve done my research and I have great news, Ladies: there is a way to re-wire our brain and avoid procrastination for good. Yeah!!!
It’s called the “5 Second Rule” by Mel Robbins, and it’s designed to beat every trick your brain plays on you to cause hesitation, overwhelm, procrastination, and overthinking.
5_4_3_2_1 I’m unloading the dishwasher, NOW!
At a minimum, your morning routine should really include:
- personal care
- unloading and loading the dishwasher
- checking what’s for lunch and dinner (do you need to prepare anything this morning?)
- one load of laundry (because one small load is easy peasy to wash-dry-fold-put away on the same day… in contrast to heavier loads…but it’s up to you 😊)
I’ve discussed this with so many moms: I know it feels challenging to follow a routine. But trust me on this. As an Organization Coach and a mom of 4, a routine is really a habit I recommend to any mom.
Especially during summer, don’t you want to be able to unwind as much as possible during the day? Following a routine on mornings is a proven tool for that. Do you need help to create your own routine? My Routine-101 is over there.
These were the 3 strategies YOU can try to keep the house clean even during summer. Let’s see now how your family can be a part of that.
#4 – Begin with a Family Meeting
I’m a huge fan of Family Meetings. They’re THE place to brainstorm together, as a family. Everybody in the family shares the speaking time: adults but kids, too. In Family Meetings, you can get your spouse and kids’ input about solutions to your everyday challenges, about the next vacation together, about anything.
So, take full advantage of this, have a Family Meeting and explain what YOU need. As the family will spend more time together, it’s also going to include more meals… and more mess, probably, right? Consequently, it will require more work to do, more jobs to share within the family. As your spouse and kids: What are their ideas to share this load, and to keep the work light, summery and extra fun?
#5 – Clean as a family
My rule of thumb is: when kids are at home full day during summer if I clean – they clean. It’s part of their Kids’ Summer Checklist, anyway 😜
But I also found one specific strategy to be useful on this matter. This strategy is called WHEN-THEN and comes from my go-to Parenting Expert, Amy McCready, author of Me Me Me” Epidemic – how to raise capable kids in an over entitled word. The idea is to leverage something positive for your child – positive, but also usually recurring. Such as dinner or the usual play time with the neighbors’ kids. For example, you could say: « WHEN our cleaning job is done, THEN we’ll have dinner ». Dinner is not a treat or a special occasion, it is just a positive event in your kid’s life.
#6 – Tidy-up Dancing!!
Why not try some music and fun to make it special… and benefit from an extra-bit of kids’ cooperation? Play some upbeat & kids-pleasing music and begin a 5-min. tidy up session as a family! Everybody shares the load and put away as much as he/she can in this 5 min. increment while dancing and giving all you’ve got!
If done every day at the same time, this tiny tidy-up session will soon become a successful routine for your family.
#7 – A decluttering Challenge with the kids
Tired of not being able to put one foot before another in your garage or your spare room? Tackle one decluttering challenge with the kids during summer: plan 3 sessions of 20 min. decluttering, use timers to stay ultra-focused only on the task and leverage one extra special occasion for the whole family: waterpark, anyone??
That’s all, Folks!
I hope you’ll find some nuggets in the whole thing.