Monday, September 21, 2009

Call For Help

Here is an area where I need help. I know most of you have strategies for keeping your house clean. Fly Lady does her 15 minute thing and the empty-kitchen-sink-before-you-go-to-bed thing. One friend, also with five children, never goes to bed without putting in a load of laundry.
My strategies are precise, though admittedly less effective: When we are out of underwear, I wash them. When we are out of glasses, I start a load in the dishwasher. When I can't find something, I clean the room. I like to go barefoot so when stuff starts sticking to my feet, I sweep. Yes, I'm a very careful housekeeper. I'm sorry if I make you uncomfortable with my perfection. We've talked about this before and I hate to keep bringing it up, but sometimes we must do things we don't enjoy (like mopping).

The most recent cleaning pitfall I've come across is dirty dishes--more specifically not having dirty dishes. Every time I go in the kitchen to make a meal, I have to wash the dishes first. Thus, quick meal prep turns into long meal prep. The children are laying about on the floor in various stages of starvation and their moans and whines of "Mommy, I'm soooo hungry" needle into my tendency for compassion.

How do you do the dishes at your house? Do the children take turns? Do you all clean up at once? Do you . . . what?


  1. I cook the dinner (because I like to), the little girls set and clear, the dad and the boy load and wash pans...they've even begun to wash down the counters
    (!)..then in the morning, before school the girls unload the dishwasher...and I try very hard to load as I go all day. It's working we very rarely have dirty dishes piled up. Although, it seems like just about the time housework becomes a well oiled machine a new baby comes, so in the next week and a half we'll see how I'll have to reinvent household duties...again. (:

  2. I only have three kids, and only one at home during the day, so it's such a big deal to keep up with them in my house.

    One thing that makes my life easier, though-- as soon as the dishes are washed, I put them away. Immediately. That way when people dirty their dishes, they can rinse them and put them in the dishwasher, which means there are never any dishes piled in the sink.

  3. Morning? Unloader unloads before seminary. Everyone loads their own breakfast dishes throughout the day. After dinner the Loader loads the d/w & daddy usually washes the dishes. Check out my blog for how things look when everyone has the flu or daddy's out of town or all of the above.

  4. I am only writing so I can read the comments.

    I am a mess Emily. I long to have an organized home- but I just go in circles all day.

    Chay's family has taught me a lot. I love watching them in action. They are always on top of everything. It is amazing. I know they are really big on the "the best way is right away" motto-

    I find this works best for me...but as I speak or as I write, there are several pans in the sink to wash. Let me know what you figure out.

  5. I wish I could get more compliance in my house, but I had a college roommate whose mother would cook dinner, and before they could sit down to eat dinner, all the cooking pans and utensils used to make the dinner had to be washed. That way the kitchen was clean when you sit to eat dinner and then cleaning the plates you eat on is much easier.
    In our house we have one kid that is supposed to wash dishes and one to unload dishes, which rotates, but I keep telling my kids they need to rinse and place their own dish in the dishwasher. This too only works when the dishwasher is empty right after being washed.