Spring cleaning sounds good in theory; who wouldn’t want a freshly cleaned, decluttered, and organized house once a year? However, between taking care of the kids, maintaining your weekly cleaning routine, and possibly working, you don’t have days—if not weeks—to dedicate to a deep clean. Freshen up your house for spring efficiently and effectively with your family’s help.
Target Problem Areas
That corner of your garage with boxes piled to the ceiling might be irksome, but does it have a major impact on your everyday life? If not, let it go, and focus instead on those issues that are really causing you trouble. If you have a kitchen cabinet full of bottles and pacifiers but your youngest child is 4 years old, box them up, and move them out to the garage. If your linen closet became storage for toys your kids have long forgotten about, donate them, freeing up space for your sheets and towels. Cleaning and organizing those spots in your house that have been driving you crazy is an effective way to spring clean without scrubbing every nook and cranny in your house.
Focus on the Season
When temperatures chilled several months ago, you probably winterized your house for the cold and snow. Now, it’s time to prep the house for warmer weather. Put away the sleds and boots. Prepare your backyard or deck for spring and summer outdoor fun—set up the patio furniture, double check that the swing set is in playing condition, and plant a few flowers. Transform your kitchen table by adding some bright placemats or a pastel table runner along with a vase full of freshly cut flowers. Your house will instantly feel updated, as you usher in spring with season-appropriate decor and items inside and out.
Spring-cleaning tasks shouldn’t be yours alone; instead, get the family involved. Challenge your kids to tackle a couple of productive but manageable tasks. Ask them to pick out five outfits in their closet that no longer fit them. Set a good example by donating these outgrown clothes to a charitable organization in need. Have the hubby organize the garage or do some springtime landscaping. Together with your family’s help, you can spruce up your house in time for spring.
Offer a Reward
Motivate your family to chip in by planning a springtime activity to enjoy once the cleaning is complete. Choose an outdoor activity to take advantage of the warmer weather. Plan a picnic in the park. Get tickets to a minor league baseball team’s opening day. Host a backyard barbecue for the kids and their friends, allowing you to enjoy the updates you made outside. A seasonal celebration can help you get your spring cleaning wrapped up and allow you to spend quality time with the family.
Don’t let spring cleaning take over your life—you simply don’t have time for that. Tackle a handful of manageable tasks with your family, and then reap the benefits of your hard work with some outdoor springtime activities.
by Steve Hunter, Owner of Astrobrite Carpet Cleaning, a family run service serving Northern Virginia since 1988. http://www.astrobrite.net