Cleaning our house is much easier, and goes a whole lot more quickly, when my girls and I work as a team.
Like always, the plan is met with much resistance. One or both of them spends the first 10 minutes complaining about why they shouldn’t have to help only to give in once they realize I’m not budging.
You’d think they would have figured out by now that they are only delaying the inevitable. It’s not like cleaning the house together is a new concept. Since they were old enough to hold a dust pan, the major housework has always been a three person job.
The fact is, I’m a single mother, and I always have been, which means I have no one else to share the load with. Not that I’m complaining, but since it’s my job to tend to all the other responsibilities of the home, I really don’t think it’s too much to ask.
Besides, when I was growing up, I had the same expectations. I think it’s good to teach them how to do more than just pick up after themselves.
We all have our own designated areas of the home, and once they’ve stopped arguing, we get about the business of working to make them shine.
My room is always the kitchen. I do all the cooking, so it is imperative that I clean the cracks and crevices my children might not realize need attention. There are half a dozen appliances that need scrubbed down as well that, although cleaned often, probably could use a little more elbow grease.
Then there’s the floor. First of all, the tile in our kitchen is uneven, so sweeping up the crumbs presents a larger challenge than it should. Second, there is a lot of rearranging that must occur in order to thoroughly clean every corner, and with my slight OCD tendencies regarding the kitchen, it’s just better that I do it anyway.
Abbey takes the living room. It’s the biggest room in the house, and requires almost as much precision as the kitchen. I have a lot of pictures, so, each time we do a big cleaning, she has to clean them one by one taking care to not ruin them. This is important because once Jaiden attempted to clean the living room and sprayed window cleaner directly on the glass of the frames. The result? Me feverishly taking out each picture to dry them off in an attempt to prevent damage. Needless to say, the girls aren’t allowed to switch rooms anymore.
That leaves the bathroom. This is Jaiden’s responsibility because, quite frankly, this room has the fewest items to clean and the way they are cleaned is not nearly as important as how well. In addition, in the process of cleaning the bathroom, she gets to make a mess, which, for her, is an added bonus. Yes, I realize this is an oxymoron, but she uses Comet, an incredibly messy cleanser, to scrub everything down. It makes it fun for her.
By the time it’s all said and done, it only takes about an hour or two, and our house is smelling fresh and clean. Too bad it can’t stay this way for long.
Amanda Smith, a working mom of two children, wrote this guest blog for momaha.com
Read more of her blogs, by clicking here.
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