A while back, I wrote this post about how to clean your house with small children. There was a comment from Leah (thanks for the comment Leah!) about doing certain chores on certain days. I had thought about doing this before, but just never got around to making a system. Then, when my friend Shal posted this blog about her cleaning routine, it gave me that extra push to actually do it. Today, I’m sharing with you my chore list!
I tried to make it pretty comprehensive. It’s not meant to be a list of all the things I have to do that day, just a list of all the things that I could need to do that day. For instance, maybe I don’t feel the need to clean the tub Every. Single. Monday. Rather, I can look at the clean the tub checkmark and think “Oh, I did that last week. I don’t need to do it this week.” Or sometimes I don’t accomplish the room that’s planned for on that day. Maybe I’m having guests on Wednesday, so rather than doing the girls’ room, I clean the living room where the guest will be sitting with me. It’s pretty flexible.
It’s nice though, having all of it written down. I used to keep a running list in my head of all the things that I needed to do. The toilets need to be cleaned, the dishwasher needs to be unloaded, the downstairs needs to be vacuumed, etc. The problem that I never realized was a problem until I changed it was that I felt like all of those things needed to be done now. Whatever was at the highest priority in my head, say the toilet needing to be cleaned, would constantly nag at me. Every time I sat down to knit or play with Peanut or anything that wasn’t “accomplishing” something, I’d think about that dang toilet. Now with the list, I realize I’m going to clean that toilet Monday, so I’m not worrying about it on Saturday and Sunday. It’s actually freeing.
It also helps me to do the things that I want to get in the habit of doing. Like I’d like to run the dishwasher every day and keep a mostly dish-free sink. I’m still working on that, but seeing it there on my list makes me accomplish it more days than I was before (because I hate doing the dishes, so I would always push it off to the bottom of the priority list in my head until it was to the point where I absolutely had to do the dishes). I’m even using it to try to remind myself to shower. I’m sure some of you know how it is with kids and trying to remember self-care. Yeah, I have a hard time with that. I need to remember to put myself first, at least some of the time.
So here is my chore list. It’s obviously going to be much different from what you would have at your house, just because our houses are different. We also have different priorities. Things that need to be done that aren’t on the list get put on a To Do list on the whiteboard where I used to write all of my cleaning to do. Mostly that list ends up being repair and yard work. I’ve had to edit the list a few times (and you can see some current edits on the list) over the month or so that I’ve been doing it. I forgot things, had typos, wanted to change the dates for things, etc. It’s a work in progress. Hopefully though, my list with give you some ideas for your list if you’re looking to make one.
Do any of you have a chore list? Do you clean things on certain days or just keep a running list? Any tips or tricks for someone, like me, who is just starting out with their list?