Thursday, February 18, 2010

A Deperate State of Affairs: Housekeeping

Oh, I loathe it. I loathe picking up, putting away, wiping, dusting, sweeping, vacuuming, scrubbing...all of it.

I have never been particularly neat but when I was living alone ( ah, those short-lived, halcyon days of having my own apartment), I managed to be almost anal about keeping things tidy. I had a routine of straightening up before bed, keeping the kitchen clean while cooking, and I even left the bathroom cleaner than when I moved in. Of course that was only me and a measley 650 square feet.

And then comes hubby, fixer-upper house three-times the size, baby, new baby, quitting work to homeschool, and another baby. It makes housekeeping much more challenging. Anything that even looks like it could make housekeeping easier is something I will seriously consider trying.

My favorite tool from Christmas 2008 is one where the promise has lived up to my expectations. Being naturally skeptical of "guarenteed to make your life easier!!!", I was slow to get on the bandwagon. My mom had one a full year before me.

A cordless sweeper. The link goes to the model I have which I like very much. With an entire first floor of tile, there was no way I was using a broom for everything. Not to mention the amazing amount of crumbs that end up on the floor after meals with three or more kids. The sweeper keeps it's charge for a long time. Long enough for me to cover the 1000 square feet. With no cord to worry about, I do not have to interrupt the flow to untangle or move a plug. I know it is not the most amazing revelation, one of you might buy one if you had not considered it before and find it useful.

I have another favorite from this Christmas.

After I use the sweeper, I can finish my floors with the steam mop. So easy! And it truly does a credible job getting up the dirt. I find it actually loosens up sticky messes better than a regular mop. And no bucket and super wet, slippery floors. The floors are wet but the microfiber pad absorbs most of the water so they dry quickly. The microfiber pads are easy to wash and I have extra so if they end up delayed in the laundry (like everything else), I can still do some cleaning. The only draw back of my model is that I have to refill the water reservoir frequently. Not nearly as inconvenient as walking around with a bucket and squeezing filthy water out of a mop.

I still do not enjoy cleaning, but those are two tools that I have found that make it easier. And quicker.


Henry Cate said...

We start our children fairly young in helping to clean the house. I remember a time when one of them commented that they had been cleaning the house every Saturday for a couple months and they thought that was enough. :-)

I explained that they would be cleaning for the rest of their lives, or at least as long as they lived with us. There was such a look of shock on her face!

christinemm said...

What kind of floor is in your kitchen?

I'm curious if the steamer works on ceramic tile with grout.

Some of the new mops like Swiffer Wet thing does not work as it only hits the surface and does not go in the grouted areas.

Another mop I tried (brand escapes me now) gets the grout wet but doesn't touch down there to get the dirty water out, so the dirty water dries in the grout. Gross.

I use an old fashioned cotton mop (fuller brush company) and all natural CitraSolv to clean the floor. Citrus oil is a natural degreaser and it is so strong to dissolve dirty stuff on the floor.