Looking for a Way to Clean House That Takes No Time At All

I’ve done FlyLady’s routines – adapted to my own life, which is how we are supposed to use her system, since…oh, wow…since July 4, 2001. I didn’t realize it had been that long! Wow. So, I guess we could say it works for me, huh? Either that, or I like to torture myself.  Nope. It works. I have the Control Journal all fixed up and everything, as well as a notebook for Christmas and another that I put together for all other holidays. Yep, I’m in it.

There is one main thing I have to remember and that is that nothing is in place exactly the same way all the time. There are times that situations change and things have to be tweaked to fit, like this past year. We changed the purposes of two rooms (actually, one of them year before last), my husband had surgery on his wrist and elbow, and I found out the reason my digestive system felt like it had been to a rock concert and my energy level was pretty dismal was diet-related. Add to that the fact that since my husband went back to work (after six weeks off for surgery) he has an ever-changing schedule with sometimes no two days in a week with the same hours – he might go in as early as 7 am or as late as 1:30 pm…it’s just been tough. I still have my Control Journal, but it’s time for a major tweaking.

I’m moving some things to the Afternoon FlyList that were on the Morning one and vice-versa. Also, since I want to spend more time doing things related to art, writing, sewing, garden and yard, this house stuff is going to have to get done really quickly. Just in case you want to know, I won’t be dust mopping floors in the morning; I’m moving that to the Afternoon FlyList. I’d rather get up in the morning with clean floors and be able to get started on those other things that much quicker. Birds are being fed in the afternoon now since I read that suggestion (somewhere) so that they will have food ready for them in the morning after a cold night. This is much better for them since when hubby has worked late, they are out there looking for groceries before I’m even awake. I’m doing the 15 minutes of FACE (Financial Awareness Continually Empowers) in the mornings rather than afternoon, so I can get it behind me. It’s a paperwork/money thing and ignoring this stuff could create problems, but I don’t like messing with it, so if I do it early it’s out of the way for the day.

Since things were being moved all over the house while turning a bedroom into a study and a den into a studio, I figured it was as good a time as any to do a really deep cleaning and reorganizing of the entire house since it was pretty much all involved anyway. This was wall washing and everything! It has taken me a long time (I’ve painted my shed and enlarged our garden and worked on other yard projects, too) but I’m now down to just my closet and bedroom. Then I’ll redecorate the house with pictures and such and be finished. Ha. We know there is never a “Finish” when it comes to house stuff, don’t we?

Since I want to effortlessly maintain what I’ve done, last night and this morning I read an entire book. I gobbled it up! The name of it is “The House That Cleans Itself,” by Mindy Starns Clark. I wish I could borrow a few children so I could do the “Room Ownership” system that she describes. There is more than one way to maintain a clean house and she explains three of them. I don’t have children here, so I’ll have to go with one I can do myself, and it looks like I pretty much have it in place with FlyLady. I just want to get some deep cleaning worked in on a regular basis without it taking much time. In order to do that, I’m going to make Zone Missions (FlyLady thing) part of my deep cleaning routine; maybe I’ll just spend 10 minutes a day tending to shelves or drawers. Since I seem to be a pretty visual person and I forget what I own if I don’t see it, (Mindy Starns Clark is visual, too, so her book was easy for me to relate to) this will be a good way for me to keep up with what I have, and donate what I don’t need on a regular basis.

For anyone who is cleaning challenged, as Mindy and Marla, aka FlyLady, both describe themselves, these two systems are really good. If you aren’t cleaning challenged, but don’t want to spend your entire life cleaning a house, these two systems are really good and I think they integrate pretty well. I’d recommend reading both ladies’ books (Marla Cilley wrote “Sink Reflections”) and websites; they are similar, but each has some different little details that different folks will find helpful. While you are reading, my advice would be to get started on the FlyLady site with her step-by-step missions. You will begin to see progress in small increments and this will motivate you to keep going. Both ladies are great cheer leaders. So…here’s to more time to CREATE (or whatever it is that you want to do) and less time spent cleaning. Sounds good to me!

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