Go after the low hanging fruit.

trilobiteJune 12, 2011

My latest pep talk to myself,

No matter how daunting a room looks, there's always some low hanging fruit. In other words, there's always at least one thing that you instantly know is trash or you instantly know right where it goes.

And once that one obvious thing is cleared, there's usually a few more almost as obvious things. And once some of the low hanging fruit is taken care of, it's a little easier to tackle some of the other stuff.

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This is how I clean my house when it's really "messy". First I grab a black garbage bag and go from room to room, empty wastebaskets, pick up and throw out anything you know is garbage (candy wrappers, take-out coffee cups, used kleenex, etc). Then start at the top of each room and work down. Dust ceiling cobwebs, wash around electric switches where finger marks seem to just sprout. . Move to the center of the room, anything waist high-counters, desktops,bookshelves, dusting, etc. Keep going till you get to the floor. Sweep and wash hard floors, vacuum rugs. Run a load of laundry and a load of dishes in your dishwasher if you can. I'll pick up towels from the bathrooms just to have something to launder. I can get a lot accomplished. Final step, light some scented candles and make a nice dinner. You've earned a little rest.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2011 at 8:50AM
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Some of the low-hanging fruit might be things to put away.

But there is ALWAYS an easy place to start.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2011 at 12:32AM
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The easiest room in the house to clean is generally a bathroom. Remove clutter, empty wastebaskets, wash mirrors, launder towels, remove and wash scatter rugs, clean the toilet, go over all tiles and the tub/shower with a good spray-on, wipe-off cleaner. Open a window if you can, to air out any fumes from the cleaners and to let in some fresh air.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2011 at 12:48PM
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I agree about the easiest room being the bathroom.

In theory, I think the next easiest room should be the kitchen, but our kitchen tends to have so much entryway stuff that things get muddied.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2011 at 1:06PM
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My kitchen is definitely my worst room. I open mail there and leave piles on the kitchen table to deal with. Always cooking projects and dirty dishes going on. Then there's cleaning out the refrigerator. I try to do a complete fridge clean-out twice a year.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2011 at 10:02AM
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Not necessarily low-hanging fruit, but I try to do a mini-clean out of my refrigerator every week the night before the trash pickup. That way the most obvious things get tossed before they go really bad.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2011 at 3:22PM
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Yep, I think sometimes if I can do nothing else, I can go into my son's room and pick up the socks. He tends to wear them to bed and kick them off at night. One time I counted the socks, he had 27 PAIRS! I didn't even realize he owned that many!

My main problem is I just have too much stuff. When we remodeled our kitchen (2004) I took one cabinet and labeled containers for things like pencils, pens, paper fasteners, rubber bands, markers, crayons and yes, even one for calculators. It has really helped over the years when I feel overwhelmed looking at a room that needs cleaning. Now I see the pencils, pens, rubber bands, etc and think "well I know where that goes" and can at least do something.

    Bookmark   September 13, 2011 at 12:50AM
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