Wednesday, September 09, 2015

spring cleaning the family home

My recent bout of illness had me looking at the house with a particularly critical eye. Everything looks filthy when you're sick, doesn't it? I was seeing germs and mess and scrunched up tissues everywhere and because I didn't have the energy or inclination to do anything about it it just got worse. The house and my mood was lacklustre, to say the least. 

Spring is here in all its glory but my motivation to start spring cleaning has taken a fair bit of encouragement. Alas, these past few days I seem to have found my mojo and I'm finally getting on top of the housework. But therein lies the dilemma. I'm getting on top of the housework and at a loss as to when I'll find the time to tackle the seasonal clean that desperately needs to happen sometime soon.

Yes, the hardest thing about spring cleaning the family home is finding the time and the space to do anything more than the necessary. And let's face it; a thorough spring clean is above and beyond the weekly chores - it requires a significant chunk of time and a fair amount of foresight and energy. This very predicament is what so many of you have mentioned in the past; it's a valid concern and it's one I've been contemplating these past few days. What with a baby who is ravenous for solid food and starting to move about the house, a convalescing preschooler and a growing list of editorial work to do, I'm seeing my spring cleaning list venture further and further towards the land of never-getting-done. 

But that just won't do. 

So, I've reached the stage of having to be incredibly realistic (in the non idealistic sense). Will every room receive a thorough spring clean this season? No, it most definitely won't. Some drawers and cupboards will be left in their current state of disarray and that's perfectly fine. But there are a few areas of the home that do need my attention and I've placed them at the very top of the list - sensibly prioritising my spring cleaning chores is necessary this year. Very necessary.

With Poet home from preschool for another week I've decided it's best to do jobs that she can easily help out with so top of the list is all the children's clothes that I have in storage tubs. Despite my past decluttering efforts I think eight storage tubs is still too many. It's time to approach them with a newfound sense of ruthlessness. And then? The kitchen needs a bit of an overhaul and my spring wardrobe needs a refresh. Three tasks that will hopefully get my attention over the next 10 or so days.

What's on your realistic spring cleaning list?


  1. I just need to sort through my girls' too-small clothes and donate them to charity and friends. I'm sick of seeing my little B squeeze into clothes she adores that are just too small for her long-arms and growing bod! I think I might need to do it one day over school holidays when she's still at pre-school and my big girl is home to help.

  2. Just last weekend we sent Clementine off to her grandparent's house for the day so we could do a big spring clean. It is just impossible to get anything done with her around the house; she seems to consider it her job to undo whatever it is we're doing! We were quite productive but there is still so much more that I need/want to do before baby... x

  3. I followed your spring cleaning guide last year and did so much more than ever before. I always struggle to make cleaning a priority, even though I love things clean. Organised, is another kettle of fish. I love feeling organised so much that I actually do something about it.

  4. Your post really chimed with me - it's always when we are at our lowest ebb anyway that the house work seems to get the better of us, isn't it? And it's so true that with children around you just have to prioritise and be realistic about what can be achieved and maintained.

    I've been trying to do some organising and cleaning too, concentrating on one room at a time to declutter and re-organise. Hopefully this will have the long-term effect of making the up-keep of the house easier to achieve...

  5. One thing I wanted always to ask here - how about our men? It seems as if women totally approriate this cleaning task to themselves, do men feel the same? Well, I guess it is as it is, then my question is: what to do with those feelings of injustice ? or how to ask for help in a more positive way so that the man actually appropriates certain tasks to himself?

  6. I have sorted boxes and boxes of baby clothes and toys they have out grown but I just can't get rid of them!! Don't think we will have any more kids but you never know I might change my mind!!

  7. I'm with you. Our teeny tiny farmhouse honestly takes no time at all to clean, but still the weekly general clean drains me! Ha! Although I do dream of larger spaces (one day) I definitely don't dream of larger spaces to clean. Storage is great, but it's also just more room to shove more STUFF! This Spring I'm hoping to really try and de-clutter, I've already done a few bags of odds and ends to the op shop and I have a growing pile of STUFF sitting in my sewing room to photograph and put on our local buy swap sell Facebook page. Our chimney is in desperate need of a clean out and Matt's sister recently invested in a chimney sweep brush - so that's on our list too! I can't wait to not have the fire on day and night, the dust and wood chips and smoke is alarming. Aaaaand Eleanor has started to violently shake on the wooden play pen we have around the fire! Eeep!

  8. oh I am being ruthless.... as a hoarder I am working on not being one. I am the girl who read the "Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Mari Kendi and managed to vary her clothing from 13 large boxes to 12 1/2 (I honestly held every single item in my hands but confessed to loving them ALL) .... anyway... so I have the box of puzzles.... I sorted them to age appropriate and those that are not age appropriate are ready to go to a garage sale, and those that are not played with by Friday, they likewise, GO. I intend to use this attitude with everything I can by the end of the week. The GO pile is a garage sale pile - proceeds will go to cat rescue, which makes all of us in our family happy. I am not sure how much spare time is left, with the weekend being over, but a few hours here and there another weekend next week.... the intention to commit Spring is a season not a day!


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