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A Little Housework Goes a Long Way

  1. Dec 20, 2005 #1
    Housework is something we like to put off until our conscience tells us we absolutely must do it.

    I think I've discovered why housework is one of the tasks that we dread most. I don't like to spend an entire day cleaning so I've found that doing a little on a daily basis (or perhaps every other day) seems to work best for me.

    For instance, I have a bookcase with five shelves loaded down with books. On Sunday I took all the books out and stacked them in piles on the floor in the same order they were in on each shelf. Then I pulled out the bookcase from the wall and vacuumed behind it. I washed the wallpaper, the mop board and the floor underneath the bookcase with Mrs. Murphy's Oil because I knew this would be the best time to do it with the books off the shelves. I polished the bookcase and dusted the books and put them back. I washed all the knick-knacks on the top shelf with "Joy" and polished them to a brilliant shine. I threw away the National Geographics, Harper's Bazaar, Vogue, Mademoiselle and other magazines that I'd been holding on to since the 80's. I was more or less using them to hold up other books to keep them from falling down.

    I also pulled out my ancient Philco floor model radio and dusted inside the back of the radio and also washed the wall and the floor behind that also.

    Anyway, I've cleaned a small area completely and thoroughly without spending a whole day doing it. It's the thought of cleaning the whole room that makes me procrastinate so I thought doing a little housework well is better than trying to do a lot haphazardly.

    How many other people out there clean incrementally? What are you willing to throw to the crocodiles in the moat today? I'm going to make a New Year's resolution to throw out at least one thing a day that I can do without.
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 20, 2005 #2
    I don't have a moat, and I'm too far north to keep crocs or gators outdoors. :frown:
  4. Dec 20, 2005 #3
    No offence, but: NO, REALLY?

    That goes for quite a lot of things (school, love, etc). Unfortunately, there are sometimes rather big things that do need to happen at once, for example when you are moving.
  5. Dec 20, 2005 #4


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    That's a good idea you have there.

    I just now wiped up some coffee off the counter. But then I felt guilty. Since I'd just dribbled the coffee on the counter was I really making progress or just preventing the mess from becoming worse.

    So I dusted one knick-knack. Best to start out slow. And, clumsy I may be, but that's one knick-knack I won't ever have to clean again. But then I had to sweep around the shelf. Then the area around the shelf contrasted with the rest of the floor, so I had to sweep the entire floor.

    I fed the pieces of the knick-knack to the crocodile in the moat. Who knew that crocodiles couldn't digest broken glass any better than humans. I also realized that movies never show just how large birdcrap from circling buzzards can be when they splash against a window. Now I suppose I'll have to wash the windows, as well. Except if I open the windows before cleaning the windowsills, the dirt on the windowsill will blow all over the freshly swept floor.

    This job just doesn't seem to be getting any smaller. One thing's for sure, if it takes me anywhere near the bathtub, then it's going to be time to find a new place to live.

    How is this supposed to make housecleaning easier again?
  6. Dec 20, 2005 #5
    heh, if I start to clean something, I finish it. I can't stop until the job is done, for some reason. During the summer I pulled an all nighter to finish cleaning up part of the house, even though I didn't have to in anyway, it's just that I started to clean it earlier.....
  7. Dec 20, 2005 #6


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    The easiest solution to keeping the house clean is simply to put things away after you use them. The kitchen counters get a quick wipe-down after I prepare a meal (or when I load the dishwasher after I eat dinner). The clean dishes get put away in the morning while I'm waiting for my coffee to brew. The easiest time to do laundry for me is just after I shower when I realize the pile of laundry looks like enough for a full load. I do wind up with stacks of baskets of clean laundry, because I don't seem to find time to fold the laundry.

    That pretty much leaves bathrooms to clean, which can be fairly rapidly done (I keep cleaning supplies in every bathroom, so all I need to do is grab some Lysol and swish a brush around the toilet or give a quick scrub to the tub), floors to vacuum, which is again a fairly quick job (I don't have to do every room in one shot, but I usually do), and some dusting, which isn't that big of a problem for me. I don't worry about dusting every nook and cranny, but if I notice a layer of dust on something, I give it a quick swipe (if you don't keep a lot of knick knacks, you don't have to waste time dusting them...so that's my approach).

    If you just keep up with everything like that, which takes hardly any time at all, then just once in a while I need to go all out and move furniture to vacuum under it, which I pretty much do when it's time to shampoo the carpets.

    My mom used to save all the housework for weekends, and I hated doing it that way. Though, when I owned my last house and had a yard to maintain in addition to the housework, I would spend my weekends doing yardwork, but I really enjoyed that, so didn't mind. I can't really say I'm missing it now that I'm renting again and have all that free time again. :biggrin:
  8. Dec 20, 2005 #7
    cleaning is for women.
  9. Dec 20, 2005 #8
    I haven't heard that in years, I don't even remember where I buried the last man who told me that.
  10. Dec 20, 2005 #9


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    :devil: :rofl:

    Oh, wait, maybe it was a clue on Jeopardy! I believe the question is, "How do you stay single and dateless?"
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