Monday, June 09, 2008

Give Me Five Monday!

The 'Give Me Five' Monday meme is designed to share fun information with each other in a simple short list! This is brought to you by our lovely hostess, Becca, who asks today: Give Me Five tips and tricks for keeping your house clean and clutter free.

I am a pretty organized person as anyone who reads my blog with a little regularity can tell you, and as my family and co-workers would also tell you. But... my house is not spotless! I wish it was! I am forever organizing and cleaning to try and keep up with a family of six. When things are organized and clean, I am simply a happier person.

1. I make a "chore chart" each month that shows the kids what they are expected to do on a daily basis as well as each weekend. They live here, and they are expected to contribute. Granted, they don't do much, and only one of them ever does more than is expected of her, but it helps. I wrote about it in a post here if you'd like to see a picture of what it looks like.

2. Rachel Anne at Home Sanctuary suggested putting cleaning supplies under the cabinet in each bathroom so that you don't have to lug them around, and if the supplies are there, you're more likely to take five minutes to clean the bathroom. Each of my bathrooms has cleansers, glass cleaner, a toilet scrubber, clorox wipes, paper towels, and wash cloths under the sink. I also participate in her "small things" challenges each day, or as often as I can. Check it out!

3. Plan your menus, at least tentatively. Laura over at Organizing Junkie has Menu Plan Monday each week. I participate as often as I can. It helps me with grocery shopping and the "what's for dinner" syndrome. She also hosts monthly organizing challenges. I love her site!

4. Laundry is always a challenge in our household because there is so much of it. I make it a goal to fold and put away laundry as soon as it comes out of the dryer, and I ask my kids to put away their own clothes. The older girls do their own laundry (most of the time), and sometimes even the youngest daughter. Enlisting help is a must.

5. Find a place for everything. We have a basket in the kitchen that holds keys and miscellaneous items. We have school supplies located in one area of our downstairs closet. The kids know where to find paper, markers, index cards, etc. Chargers we don't use frequently and electronic "extras" are in a plastic box in the cabinet. Designate an area, basket, container, or "spot" for everything. This really helps if you are forgetful like me.

6. I know this is Give Me Five, but I can't help myself! I keep my pantry organized - all the spices in one section, soups, canned vegetables, packaged foods, etc. Makes life easier.

7. I still can't help myself! Towels are a big deal when you have four kids sharing a bathroom. I bought new towels, four colors, one color per child. If they pick up after themselves and keep up with their laundry, they will always have a clean towel. My older girls tend to leave their towels on the floor (I think this is disgusting), then they get in the bathroom, their towels are in the bedroom, so they grab another towel. That means a towel a day, but not with my system. There is no reason to use a different towel every day if you pick it up off the floor and hang it up like you should.

Cleaning and organzing is my thing! Well, ONE of my many things! Check out more tips at this week's Give-Me-Five.


  1. You have some great ideas and links. I learn a lot from you so THANKS!

    My son is really the Tasmanian Devil for where ever he goes, a mess follows! Your towel rule looks pretty darn good.

  2. Ok, I think this is going to be my favorite GM5 post this week! I love love LOVE the links you have shared, I plan to re-visit them soon! Also, I really enjoyed the fact that you wanted to share more than just 5! For having 4 kids, the towel thing is imperative! I used to work (private duty home health) for a family with 4 kids and 3 of the girls all shared the same bathroom and they also had certain towels and places to hang them when they were finished with them. It worked great because if one was missing, I knew who to get onto LOL
    Great list!! Thanks for participating.

  3. Look at you go with more than 5. I love #7. I think I may have to buy my kids their own colored towels. Thanks!

  4. Great post, forgetfulone! Sounds like you keep chaos at a minimum! :D

  5. Looove the links!!!! Thank you so much :)

  6. I love the '7'. I always did a 'tote' system too. Everyone knew they were supposed to pick up after themseleves and when I went to clean and vacuum, anything in my path went into a 'tote' and the respective party had to EARN it back with extra chores - kind like extra credit in school to raise your grade. Anyway, it worked in nothing flat! It even worked on hubby!

  7. All your tips are excellent. Yep. Children can learn to be good helpers. Then it's not such a chore to keep the house tidy. :)

  8. thanks for sharing. I do a lot of the same things and it makes a huge difference in keeping things more organized.

  9. Great list! I used to have a chore chart for the kids when they were small too. Happy Monday (a day late!)!

  10. Love your tips! I especially need to work on #5, because I do not have a place for everything, especially now that hubby's family is downsizing and we are somehow ending up with a lot of "things" that we don't really need.

  11. I love your chore chart! It is simple and very doable. You've inspired me to get back to posting a regular that I am down to one child at home, I find that I am winging it too often.

    Color coded towels! Eureka.

    Thanks for doing the meme! This was great fun and I'm looking forward to more.

  12. This is a great list! It's reminding me how much I need to get back into these memes since summer has come to an end. We took a break, and it was fun, but I'm paying for it just a little bit! :)


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