Domesticating My Sons

My two boys are excited about cleaning. They are nearly 5, and 2 and a 1/2. They are learning the value of a tidy home. The little one made a mess in the bedroom. The big one groans and it goes something like this:

"You have to learn to put your toys away or else I'm going to be late for school in the morning because I have to pack it all away again, OK. So why did you make a mess"
"I doh-noh"
"Now put those toys away"
"I caaaan't"
big sigh "Oh, OK, I'll help you but don't do it again OK"

And only that morning:
"Are you cleaning again today Mummy? Can I help?"  Sure. What a busy and productive week we've had.
I've clawed my way back from a slow start in the kitchen, knocking off all jobs bar 'dust light fittings'. Due to height insufficiency (mine) and only having the short ladder in the shed, husband kindly volunteered (domestic bliss) to do that on the weekend... I forgot to remind him.

View under my kitchen sink before I 'organised'

And after...

I don't even own the top half of that stick mixer piece. Bin!

I got a bit excited buying plastic storage containers from Howards Storage World. I went twice this week. I could go again, but I'd probably get in trouble.

I dusted and de-ornamented my bedroom. Change sheets, wash matress protector, air cushions on clothesline (don't have any, thought about adding it to my 'to sew' list but now it's just an extra job I can cross off without actually doing anything), flip and vacuum mattress. What? I have never vacuumed my mattress. My Mum never told me I needed to do that. So I skipped that bit. I changed the sheets only last Friday. That bit can wait while I finish the kitchen! Plus, anyone in Perth on Tuesday would recall wild storms. Well a lot of rain and some hail. Not a whole lot of sunshine to kill dustmites. I know, I think it is the UV rays that kill off the bacteria, but it just wasn't going to happen.

Laundry. Tick. I accidentally left the tap on in my laundry trough about 2 weeks ago (everything feels like 2 weeks ago, but it wasn't long ago, truly) so I had to mop up in the cupboard underneath the trough. We also have a neat laundry clothes drawer, luckily empty at the time except for a teatowel and a sock, it wasn't quite pushed in, so it collected oh, um, I shouldn't admit this...only about 8 bucketfuls of water. I poured it in the potplants, even though it had been raining. So, laundry: cleaned, walls dusted.  More kitchen catchup. Kids are pretty good at cleaning kitchen cupboard doors. I really should make it a regular thing.

Back lounge. Tick! Dust cabinets & pictures, wipe over and vacuum lounge. This took longer than I anticipated, thinking 'it's leather' so wouldn't t take even half as long as the old one, which collected Abbie cat's fur better than a sticky roller brush. There were a lot of milk drips from baby post-feed burps.
The "5 minutes only" job today was to clean the windows of the main area of house. WHAT? Five minutes. You've gotta be kidding me!! Five minutes would do the sliding door. So, yes  Keegan, you can help me clean today.

My Enjo window cleaning kit

Armed with my Enjo window cleaner and Keegan with the spray bottle, we set to the windows. We powered through them in oh, about 15 minutes. Inside. Plus about 20 minutes outside. But we had little brother waking up and needing a cuddle interruptions. Little sister, unusually, slept from 3.30 til about 6pm, which was kinda handy.

Me: Just spray a bit of water for him Keegan. Not on it, on the window.
Yes. This is how you do it

Then you do this, Nathan.

Can you see me in the photo, Mum?

Like this?

Yep, just like that.

So all up it took just over an hour.  I decided while I was at it, I might as well do the kitchen window, which has been waiting since Monday. It wasn't too grubby, but the tracks were filthy, so an old toothbrush got down and dirty. And now they're clean. I even found a butter knife in the track. Wondered where that got to. And because I was doing this when husband got home and asks "Are you feeling OK?" then shortly after, " Don't stop now, I'll cook dinner". Excellent. Mental note: be busy doing cleaning stuff when he gets home more often.

Vacuum and mop floors. Tick. Pretty uneventful.
Back the the bedrooms to change the sheets and flip the mattress. And vacuum it. Both sides. Only mine. I figured the boys mattresses were new. Ish.

Saturday and Sunday. Thank God it's the weekend!! So I forgot about the dusting of light fittings. We did fun stuff, like go to Howards and buy remote control cars and go to 2nd birthday parties (Happy Birthday to my nephew Thomas).

Toy bag I whipped up for Thomas on Saturday night.

Monday. Back to work. Do you have to clean again today Mum? Yup.
BathroomS. I put these off all the time. I'm pretty sure I've only cleaned the shower in the kids bathroom twice in 3 years. It is so rarely used it hardly needs it. I used a bit of my Enjo stuff, plus a bit of hard core mould killer in my shower, which didn't bleach  the mould and whiten the tiles like I had imagined, but it is mostly done. Just the shower screens need a little more elbow grease to shine them up nicely.

My Enjo bathroom miracle. 'Clean from the cupboard.'

Dear Husband,
This in a bathroom Enjo miracle. It is not the car miracle. That is grey. A grey one will stay grey. A white one will not stay white if you clean the car with it.
Love, Your Wife.

Kids bathroom, sparkling! For about 5 minutes.

Put your toothbrush holder in the dishwasher. Awesome idea. It is a P.I.T.A. to clean (the electric brush head holder thingo). Nightmare. Let's hope the dishwasher does a good job.

I have to confess I haven't cleaned the windows...any tips for those bumpy glass windows with wire running through it like a checkered shirt?

I am so glad tomorrow is Tuesday.
Clean out the fridge. I actually don't mind doing this every once in a while.
Organise a meal plan. Did that on Sunday, though perhaps I will re-evaluate to use up the 4 half jars of various curry pastes in the bottom of the fridge.  
Declutter cookbooks. And I did this not long ago, though I still have A LOT. So I will aim for three more tomorrow.Perhaps I will consolidate some of the recipes I've collected from magazines into something a little better.

For those who have signed up too, happy cleaning! I'd love to hear what you start on!


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