So in my ward in Twin one of my really good friends was such an inspiration to me. She was the live definition of a stay at home mom, she put me to shame! She always has fresh home made bread, her kids are amazing at everything they do and so strong and smart in the church...and she has this AMAZING house and it is ALWAYS clean! She's got 6 kids and there is never anything out of place. Which made me feel even worse when then few times she came to my house...it was far from spotless...and I have 1 kid. Anyways, she spoke at enrichment one night and showed us all of her secrets...so I thought I would share with any one who needs a few pointers.
1. The Problem
* "The average American burns 55 minutes a day - roughly 12 weeks a year - looking for things they know they own but can't find." -Newsweek
*$$$ too...have you ever had to buy something because you couldn't find the one that you have?
*CHAOS: Can't Have Anyone Over Syndrome
*STUFF: Something That Undermines Family Fun
OLD WAY: Sorting through piles and moving them from one place to another-as a result the clutter just piles up every time you buy or get something new.
NEW WAY: Meet your new best friend - The Timer!
--For this she was asked how to get your kids motivated to help clean, and she said the timer works every time. Once everyone is done eating everyone takes a bet on how long it will take to do the dishes, sweeping the floor and all, and then she gives them a minutes less than what they said and the work so hard and fast to beat the timer. She said they can usually get the kitchen all clean and spotless after dinner in about 6:52 minutes.
--She says games are great with kids. She will even have her 3 year old help her fold laundry and he loves it! She has the head bands that has all different cards with animals on them. Each of you put one on and while you fold laundry you guess what you have on your head.
--When she sends her kids to clean their rooms when they say they are done she will ask them "Would President Monson feel comfortable sleeping your your room?"
2. Tips for Decluttering
*You cannot organize clutter...so get rid of it!
*The more you throw away...the cleaner the house will stay
*Don't keep anything in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful
*Even "free" clutter is still clutter - Don't let it in to begin with
*Try the "5 minute room rescue"
*Make a jar with places that need to be dejunked - pull one out to do each day
*Set the time for specific amount of time, have three boxes on hand and go to each room when you clean them:
3. Keeping it That Way! - A Matter of Habit
*Clutter attracts more clutter!
*Clean as you go, wipe as you work, pick up as you pass by, look back as you leave
*Never go anywhere empty handed
*DON'T PUT IT DOWN-PUT IT AWAY
*If you buy something, give or throw away a similar item
*Have kids choose some things and leave under the tree for Santa to take
*Use a kitchen file for the endless paper war
She makes a goal every so often to get rid of a certain amount of items. When we moved I was telling her how much we were getting rid of...which was a TON! And she was so proud of us and she said "this week I am trying to get rid of 200 things around the house." We probably got rid of about that much...and we haven't missed any of it.
We had a friend that told us that the have a plan they live by, when they go through their stuff, clothes would be a great one, if you haven't used it in a year...get rid of it!!