Each week I Homeschool my littles and by Friday afternoon I am sitting quietly in our living room, laundry folded, house clean, candle lit and enjoying some time to myself. Sound crazy? Well this is a beautiful picture of what it looks like when you follow a cleaning routine that works for you not against you. What I am about to tell you is not that I have magical fairies, or that I hire a house cleaner or that I have a family member help out. It involves hard work but if you’re like me, this cleaning concept just might free you from the feeling of never keeping up on the cleaning.
When I first became a young Mom I was blessed to live in a neighborhood with community, we actually went outside and really got to know our neighbors. A group of us Moms were working and stay at home Mothers and had young children, we were beginning to navigate the unknown waters of accomplishing things in our home without drowning in stress and exhaustion. Over the course of many wonderful days sitting outside while our children played together we all gleaned a wealth of information Mom to Mom on how to make things work in our homes.
You see, I am not a person who can function in a messy house. I’m just not cut out of that cloth, when things are messy I am a mess. Here I was with a lot of tiny kiddos who couldn’t help me at all and it was so defeating. I was struggling and felt like I was working on cleaning all the time, yet nothing ever felt clean. That’s what happens when you have small ones following behind your routine with dirty footprints and baskets of toys!
That’s when a few of these wonderful Mom friends of mine introduced me to this wonderful concept.
Once a week cleaning.
So here is how it works, every Friday morning we all wake up and clean the entire house top to bottom. Sounds like a lot of work and I won’t tell you it isn’t, but this has actually been quite freeing for me in many ways.
I don’t feel pressured to clean any of the other days of the week.
So during the week I do only the most basic things. We keep clutter picked up, I sweep every day, do the dishes and vacuum our main living room only a few other times depending on how busy we are. But other than that, I don’t do anything else. I am freed up to teach my kids, make meals and just relax because I know Friday is coming. If the kitchen floor is super sticky on Thursday, I know it will get cleaned the next day and I let it go. Sometimes waiting until Friday is hard, I have to force myself to leave it alone and it is always worth it. Friday always comes and with it, a clean house!
We enjoy a clean house all weekend.
This might be my favorite part! My husband looks forward to coming home on Friday because he knows the house will be clean. He once told me he cares more about coming home to a clean house than a nice meal on the table. I was shocked! Because this is important to him I put a high priority on it, and it is valuable to me as well so we both win! On Saturday morning we wake up to a fun day of family time instead of a house full of chores to accomplish. And of course sometimes we get to the deeper organizing or outside projects on the weekend but then we get to start those projects right from the start of our day.
My Littles know what to expect.
My Littles know that on Friday morning we will wake up and right after breakfast dive into our cleaning tasks. Not only do they know what to expect on Friday morning but they also look forward to it! They have even confessed to Cleaning Day being their favorite day of the week. This shocked me for sure. Even they like getting our weekend off to a good start and enjoy the feeling of a picked up house. And we’ve been cleaning this way for 6 years so now they are just used to it!
So how does this work with Homeschooling?
Truthfully I did not think I would be able to carry this routine over into our homeschool years but I was absolutely wrong. Each school day we just do a little extra school work, basically fitting 5 days worth of school work into 4 days. And remember, because I am not scattered trying to fit random cleaning assignments in every single day, this works out quite well.
On school days we are fully immersed in school. On cleaning day we are fully immersed in cleaning. Over the weekend we are fully immersed in family time, relaxation and fun.
I am so glad God brought me those lovely Mom friends way back when because this is the just some of the best bit of wisdom I gleaned from them.
So each Friday morning you will find me and my littles scrubbing the grit of a week of living fully in our home, yet by Friday afternoon you will find me chilling out waiting for my husband to get home.
The direct opposite of how I would feel trying to do a little each day, feeling like nothing was ever clean no matter how much I cleaned.
So maybe give it a try?
And gab with your Mom friends about their ideas,
Because I bet they have some pretty good tips!