Spring cleaning is daunting enough without kids, but with kids, it can feel downright impossible. There is just so much to do: getting rid of dust bunnies, mopping the floors, organizing baby clothes, decluttering your closet. The list is endless. How are you supposed to tackle all of these tasks with kids underfoot?
First, take a deep breath! Cleaning and refreshing your home with little kids can be tricky, but it’s totally doable—even for busy parents. Below, here is your no-fuss guide to spring cleaning your home when your to-do list is already a mile long.
Do a Little Each Day
Unless you live in a tiny home and have a babysitter on speed dial, there is simply no way you’re going to finish spring cleaning in a single day. (Besides, what parent would possibly have the energy?) Rather than try to do the impossible, break your spring cleaning down into manageable chunks. Then, set aside a little time each day to knock out those tasks.
You don’t need to block out an entire hour to clean. In fact, you might be shocked at how much you can get done in as little as 10 minutes! Cleaning a small bathroom, vacuuming one room in the house and wiping off a ceiling fan are all tasks that you can complete in 10 minutes.
Start from the Top
This might go without saying, but we’re going to say it anyway just in case: start at the top and work your way down. Why? Because it’s extremely frustrating to spend so much time and energy vacuuming and washing the floors only to realize that you forgot to dust the ceiling. Those dust bunnies are going to float down from the ceiling—and guess what happens next? You’ll look at your now-dusty floors and realize that you need to clean them. Again.
Finding enough time to spring clean just once is difficult enough. Don’t make yourself do it twice!
Spring Clean the Nursery
Babies grow unbelievably fast. If you need to pick up some new Onesies® Brand Bodysuits and pajamas for your little one, you should probably sort through their outgrown clothing first. But where do you even begin?
First, remove items that no longer fit your baby. If you’re planning to have another kiddo in the future, keep the old items in storage. Otherwise, throw them in the donation pile and let another mama-to-be enjoy your excellent taste in baby clothes.
For baby clothes that your little one hasn’t grown into yet, consider putting them in organization bins labeled by size. When your little cutie grows into them (which will happen before you know it!), you can easily pull out your bin and hang them in the closet.
Get the Kids Involved
Who says that you need to clean and organize all by yourself? Start a family tradition by getting everyone involved in spring cleaning. Not only will it make the cleaning go by faster, but it can also make a big difference in your child’s future. According to a study published by the University of Minnesota, getting your little ones involved with chores from an early age can help build a lasting sense of responsibility and self-reliance.
To get your kids involved with spring cleaning, focus on making it fun for them. Blast some catchy tunes, show your kids how to “slam dunk” dirty clothes into the laundry basket and have them slide around the floor in microfiber dusting slippers.
Although toddlers may be too small to help with actual cleaning, they can help with smaller tasks. Encourage your enthusiastic helper by letting them dust a low surface or pick up their toys.
Sure, there are ways to make spring cleaning more fun for the family, but let’s not kid ourselves—it’s still a lot of work. To get everyone on board with spring cleaning, it doesn’t hurt to offer an additional incentive.
For example, you could treat everyone to pizza and arcade games after they finish a certain number of chores. If your kids are constantly begging you to buy them a new video game, that could also be a great incentive.
Declutter Throughout the Day
Clutter is overwhelming and stressful. It also takes up a lot of precious time because you typically need to declutter a space before you can actually start cleaning it.
To make your spring cleaning go by much quicker, try to tidy things up throughout the day. Pick toys off the ground and toss them in the toy bin on your way to the kitchen. Clear off a messy counter while you’re waiting for your food in the microwave. Put away shoes when you walk in the door (and teach your kids to put away theirs). By tackling these messes as you go, you’ll have less work to do when it comes time to clean.
Rethink Your Cleaning Equipment
Take a closer look at your vacuum. Do you need to run it over the carpet twice just to get it to pick up debris? Spending money on cleaning equipment may not be particularly fun, but it could make a huge difference to your spring-cleaning efforts.
If you’ve had the same vacuum or mop for ages, do your research and consider replacing it for a newer, more efficient model. With new cleaning equipment, you’ll get more done in less time—and with less frustration!
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