Thursday, August 19, 2010

My Housecleaning chart

I am a terrible housekeeper. I really dislike cleaning (until I start doing it, and then I don’t mind so much). It’s the idea of it, I think! And now that I’m home full-time, with an infant who still isn’t moving, and a toddler that does a fairly good job of entertaining herself, one would think my house would be sparkling… Not so much. I’m very easily distracted (ooh, shiny!). So in this, my very first official post in my home organization journey, I’ll share my plans to remedy this situation!
My initial attempt was through the file card system set up by the Sidetracked Home Executives. I found out about this through and between this site and the book I found at the library from the Sidetracked Home Executives, decided to give it a try.
In a nutshell, for this system, you put each task on its own card and then file it in the correct day in your box. Each morning, you pull out your cards and know what you are to do each day. You use a certain color card for daily tasks, a different color for weekly, etc. As you complete each task you file it where it belongs (the next day for daily tasks or the appropriate day of the week if its weekly, etc.). This is a fairly simplified description as there are also ways to keep track of seasonal tasks, monthly tasks, etc. I was so excited by this and thought it was really going to keep me on track. However… I disliked the box and piles of cards on my counter all the time, and got a little overwhelmed seeing all those cards.

Which leads to attempt #2.
This time, I decided to add daily checklists to my notebook (the organized home site describes the “household notebook” of important information; I’m attempting this as well, and perhaps will make it the subject of another post in the future…). So I made up the checklists on my computer, glued them to old file folders to make them thicker, and laminated them (so I could write with dry-erase markers and wipe it off).

For my monthly and seasonal tasks, I created a one page sheet with a list of monthly chores and dates completed, as well as a mini “calendar” of seasonal tasks and reminders. I added chores like washing windows, as well as reminders for Holiday activities and birthday celebrations.

I liked this better- not so many little cards floating around, and I could see at a glance each day what I needed to do. But I didn’t like keeping them in the notebook, as now I had a bulky notebook on my counter. As if there isn’t enough junk on there already… So I tried hanging them on the fridge with a magnetic clip. Better… But then I thought of a revision…

Better known as Attempt #3. When it comes to daily planners, I would much rather have a weekly view. In my first job out of college, I got very excited about getting a pda. However, after I used it for a week or so, I realized that I hated having to see only one day at a time. I’ve only ever liked a daily planner once, and that was in Honduras when I had a million different things to remember each day (and plus, it was free!). So I made this:

This shows all my tasks in one weekly view. Inspired by this homemade beautiful dry erase board from Make It and Love It (another awesome idea I’d like to do- they are so much prettier than my $2 Ollie’s dry erase board!), I put it in a picture frame, and plan to hang it on the wall beside my dry erase board and magnetic boards.

In my head, I like that I’ll be able to see everything at a glance, and know what I’ve done (or not done!) that week. And I can use my dry-erase markers and check things off or add new ones, and then… viola!- clean slate for the next week.


I’ll let you know how it works, and in the meantime, I’d love to know what works for you! How do you organize the running of your household?

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