Friday, November 4, 2011

What's Your Minimum Standard?

So I mopped the floors REALLY mopped them, over and over.... because I really can't remember the last time I mopped them. Really. "Umm ahhhh", as they would say in the playground.

I vacuum them often we live with all our doors flung to the dirt of local construction and leaves from the trees on the river. The unforgiving western sun in the afternoons also highlights every little bit of fluff.... so I have to clear up the crumbs (I mean chunks) under the boys kitchen stools and the tumbleweeds of my hair which I find everywhere..... but mopping?.... hmmm... goodness my priorities have changed in my life.

What's your minimum housework standard? 

I have to have the kitchen spotless when I go to bed at night... especially the sinks. I like to get up to a clean kitchen and start the coffee and school lunches without one single reminder of yesterday's housework. And the bathrooms?... 'nuked' with Domestos once a week.... and I have to yell out and tell everyone I am doing it so it is appreciated while I am doing it..... because I hate it. "Yes, Mum, thank you for our clean toilets". 

But I don't have a housework routine. I clean as I go... if I notice it is needed. I've known those damn floors have needed a mop for ages... but I've always found something more important to do. I suppose in the big scheme of things.....they don't really matter.

Life gets simpler as you get older, doesn't it? The things that really matter become glaringly obvious and things that don't? ... meh. I am at peace with irregularly mopped floors. What do you reckon? Is housework taking more of a back seat in your life? Are you living the 'minimum standard' too?

I'm going for a run! 

Happy Friday... and thanks for all your lovely comments about my beautiful boys yesterday. xx

Quotes Via Pinterest


  1. The best thing in my life is having Juana come once a fortnight - she was one of my pupils at the community centre, and the peace of mind she brings me! The house is always awash in romantic drifts of fluff (the word 'lint' comes from 'linen'), but at least it is bottomed every two weeks.

    The trouble is, I really value an orderly house, and can't think straight if there's a mess.

  2. Hi A-M, I am a bit of a 'a place for everything,everything in its place' kinda gal BUT that is just not realistic these days. Like you, I clean as I go, while kids are bathing I clean the sinks, showers etc. Floors once a week without fail though because with a little dog that drops a lot of hair it gets a little out of control!

  3. Oh A-M I figure on my death-bed the last thing I will be thinking about is my un-mopped floor. But I will mop them today since I have friends coming around for lunch! xx

  4. A-M, I try to apply the 30 minute rule. I do what I can in 30 minutes and what isn't done gets finished the following day. I started this because I was spending my entire Saturday foofing around and cleaning house instead of getting out and enjoying myself.
    The floors get done once a week, but dusting?'s too short, that's when the Quentin Crisp rule applies. Don't touch anything and you won't notice how thick the dust is. lol.

    Like you though, the kitchen has to be cleaned up before I head to bed. I like to wake up to clean surfaces, not dirty dishes.

  5. I do value a clean house, but i work from home and notice a distinct difference when no staff or clients are in. I just make sure I clean super well the night before they are back in.

    I have found Sparkle Floor Wipes. I fold, and put them on the floor and use my foot to move them around. It does an excellent job and the wipe hits the bin. We vac once a week properly (and just swiffer in the mean time). Each wednesday I throw a roast in the oven and we all clean for one hour. We cover bathrooms, dusting, skirting boards, vac etc. Then eat a lovely dinner in our clean home. ahhh Bliss.
    We do a ten minute clean up each night to return everything to its place. Laundry is the time sucker. I now put a load on, on a timer each night and have it ready to hang (but fresh) when I wake so it can do its thing and dry while i work.

  6. My partner and I most definitely subscribe to your theory on (un)mopped floors. Vacuuming is (unfortunately) a must, but mopping we strictly do on an 'ad-hoc' basis. Housework in general actually falls into that category with the exception of the kitchen, though we don't yet have children... On another note, as a relative new-comer to your blog, let me just say that you have a beautiful home. I'm currently in the process of designing and building a house for the first time, and let me tell you that I can appreciate the time, effort and expense that goes into it! Keep up the great blog :)

  7. Pandorash8. Thank you for your kind words. It is a beautiful home. It was sold last year. It was a beautiful experience to live in it while I did! I now live in an apartment but plan a move into a house in the not too distant future! Glad to hear there is another 'unmopper' out there! A-M xx

  8. I used to be obsessive with the housework. Everything had to have the once over every week. But the older I get the less important it is becoming. I do love a clean and tidy house but I can't do everything and time goes so quickly now. My children and husband take precedence, everything else comes second. But I'm with you, I cannot go to bed at night unless the kitchen sink and benches are clean and tidy. That's so my husband has free reign to make my expresso coffee for me every morning and he brings it to me in bed! Its give and take, don't you think?

  9. A-M I liked both of those quotes so much I had to pin them.

  10. I am exactly like you, I do the work that's necessary when I see something dirty. I love a clean house but I don't let it make me a slave of it. I hate mopping because it takes a long time but love the effect afterwords.
    If I have something fun ahead of me... house comes later!
    Have a great day, dear friend.

  11. I'm with you all the way on this, A-M! Minimum standard, that's going to be my new motto. I prefer to close doors. If I have a choice between cleaning the house or gardening, I pick gardening. Every so often though, I have a bit of a cleaning frenzy if I know people are coming over who might be ever so judgemental (eg - the MIL).
    I always remember going to stay with a friend who had recently built her first home with her boyfriend. She was only about 23, and they were working so hard to pay their mortgage etc. Her mother came over and went to make a cup of tea, opened the pantry and started ranting about the state of it, and how you need to empty out your kitchen cupboards and scrub them every single week. It was about then that I decided life was far too short for that sort of nonsense!

  12. Great quotes AM... sometimes we forget people come to our home to see us and NOT our home.

    Agree though, it always looks and feels better when you wake up to a clean sink ready to start all over again. When a home is organised and tidy it's always more of a haven.

    I tell the boys a stitch in time saves 9. When they drop their towel, school hat or dirty clothes on their bedroom floor etc... They are getting better at putting things in the dirty clothes basket thankfully.

    Lou ; )

  13. I am having to mop a lot more often than I should, but that's only because our driveway and concrete around the house are still being done :(


  14. The bathrooms and the kitchen are what I HAVE to have clean and neat - the rest is OK if it´s a little messy. I also HAVE to change everybody´s sheets every Sunday or I feel irritated.

    We vaccuum maybe 3 times/week since we have both boys and animals, but mopping the floors is something that I can forget for too long.

    Besides the beds, bathrooms and kitchen I don´t have a routine - I take it as it comes. :-)

  15. I was never a big fan of mopping and it was the last thing on the housework list.... however I have to say that things have changed due to a new mop! I got one of those Rubbermaid ones that has a canister to put water and detergent in and you spray and mop. Then whip the bottom off and it goes in the washing machine. No bucket or wringing so it's always ready to use. (oh, I sound like I need a life!!) . My house gets a massive clean before my mother visits which unfortunately is about once a year and around that it's whatever I can fit in. So yes, minimum standards apply here too.

  16. I used to vacuum and mop several times a day. In a massive Queenslander. Inside and the verandahs. I would wash walls and windows, dust every object and surface obsessively. Whilst working full time.

    Thank goodness I have overcome my OCD. I now vacuum maybe once or twice a week and mop maybe weekly. Wash walls and windows if I notice they need it.

    Sometimes I become concerned that maybe I've gone too far the other way but then figure if the house is untidy it doesn't mean it's dirty. We don't have germs if there's a smidgen of dust on a window.

    TDM xx

  17. And when you yell out to the boys that you are cleaning the toilets, do they sing your praises and worship the ground on which you stand??? Because the rotten thing about housework is that it jolly well never stops, is never appreciated by other family members and is just totally, like, um, irritating. Right, now I have got that off my chest, I have to say that I do it when I have to, complain loudly (mostly to the cat and the bird, the family stopped sympathising long ago) but then feel surprising self-satisfied when we do, at last, have a clean house. For 5 minutes.....

    Have a wonderful weekend! In a clean or otherwise house! Virginia xx

  18. if there is one thing for certain AM = everyone has a different perception of "clean" or "minimum". Me, just to look nice, tho having a cleaner in for 3hrs a week helps a bit!

  19. I only mop occasionally or when visitors are expected. I tend to grab a towel & do a shimmy with my feet around the floorboards which the kids try & copy. KP

  20. When I first got a steam mop I made any excuse to clean the floor but that novelty soon wore off!

    I love streamlined, fast cleaning (Shannon Lush style) so I whip in and out and DONE. Very regular on cleaning the loos, with four boys, and nearly always blitz-clear the kitchen bench at the end of the day BUT I don't lose sleep if I couldn't get it done.

    We have to be fair to ourselves.

  21. I find I do more "procrasti-cleaning" now that I'm a student. I clean as it irritates me. Some days my threshold is higher than others ;)

    Have a lovely weekend A-M!


  22. Our cleaning philosophies sound similar. I like things to be tidy and I need the kitchen to be clean and clear before I go to bed, but the other stuff....?

    Once a week bathroom cleaning is good enough (and how funny - I have to make a big deal about it too, so everyone knows how much I loathe doing it. Martyr complex?), I make one of my boys vacuum and another dust, and the mopping gets done a lot less often than it should.

    If we're expecting company and the floor looks really awful, I may do a spot-mop. Doing it properly is a rare thing, I'm sad to say. There's always something more important to do.

  23. Clean enough to be Healthy.
    Messy enough to be Happy.


Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to leave me a comment. I love hearing from you. A-M xx