Having an organized, clean house is important to me. I function best when my home is clean and organized, and so does my family. It's important, but not the most important thing to me. Aside from my relationship with the Lord, THIS is the most important thing to me:
So you can bet I'm not going to sacrifice time with them to make sure my house is clean. During the summer, balancing my family, house work and job is much easier, because I'm a teacher and therefore out of work. I do try to keep a deep cleaning schedule year-round to make it easier on myself once school starts back in the fall.
I have a weekly cleaning schedule (you can read all about it here and here) in which I do a different chore each day, with Friday being a swing day. Each week, the swing day chore is different. All four swing day chores get done each month. However, there are additional chores that need to be done each month that don't quite make the weekly chore chart. I just created a generic checklist; no specific time frame, just get it done each month when you can.
As I said in the post I liked above, I do my deep cleaning when my husband is on call. Our kiddo usually has a playdate with her cousin on those days, so I like to use that time wisely. Then, I can give her my full attention when she comes home :)
Since this is the kick-off to my common sense cleaning series, I want to talk to you about cleaning your laundry machines. Don't let this one go by the wayside, folks. I waited a little longer than I should have to clean it, and it was bad. I've always cleaned the rubber rim around the door and the inside of the drum, but I forgot about one little detail. If you have front loaders, don't forget to pull out the detergent tray and clean underneath it. I had been neglecting to do that, and was greeted by a thick layer of mold. I have a cast-iron stomach and I was gagging. That's how disgusting it was.
I soaked a sponge in Chlorox and got to work. Since there were little nooks and crannies where my sponge couldn't reach, I utilized an old toothbrush. I also ran a bleach and hot water cycle through the washer to get rid of any other nasties. I then ran a plain hot water cycle to get rid of any residual bleach and then a final cycle of white vinegar and water. The white vinegar made the stainless drum shine. You can also soak a rag in white vinegar and clean the inside of your dryer drum. Don't forget to wipe down the outside of your machines as well.
As long as we are on the subject of dryers, make sure you're cleaning that lint trap each time you use your dryer. You can utilize your vacuum cleaner attachments to get the lint where your hands can't reach.
To clean your dishwasher, take a measuring cup and fill it with white vinegar. Place this cup on the top rack and wash on a hot water cycle. After the dishwasher finishes, make sure you wipe down the rubber seal around the door as this is a good place for mold to hide.
Hope this helps! Stay tuned for the next installment of Common Sense Cleaning.