Hudson Valley Parent

HVP - Feb. 2014

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Make it a family affair In the Working Mother survey, 73 percent of moms said they are the ones in their family to pick up around the house at the end of the day. Just because your name is mom, why should you do all the tidying up? Put your husband in charge of laundry and trash duty, while your kids can make their beds and pick up their toys. Seize the day! you will be starting off in the right frame of mind, and you can enjoy a tidy house for the rest of the day. Let stuff go Remember the point is to have a house that is tidy enough to keep you feeling sane and somewhat organized. You are not trying to do a thorough cleaning every morning. When you are in your kids' rooms and you see the toys strewn everywhere and their desks piled with junk, resist the urge to start a major cleaning project. Simply move on to the next steps of the routine. Tackle the belly of the beast Now, it's time to clear the breakfast dishes, load the dishwasher, and wipe down your counters and kitchen table. In the Working Mother survey, 32 percent of moms said the kitchen is the messiest room in their house. Since the kitchen is usually the heart of the home, tidying up this room is key. Now that your house is tidy, you can go and conquer the more interesting and important items on your daily agenda. When you come home later in the day, you will walk into a house that is picked up and fairly organized. It may not be sparkling, but at least it's not a mess, and you might just find that's enough to give you that peaceful feeling. Laura Lane is a freelance writer. Work from the top down Start in your own room and make your bed, put dirty clothes in the hamper, quickly wipe down your bathroom counters, and then move on to the other bedrooms in your house and repeat the routine. Ditch the toy box Once you've finished tidying the bedrooms, move into the family room. If there are toys all over the floor, pick them up and put them into storage bins. It's important to have smaller bins, so you can separate and organize toys into logical categories. This makes it easy for kids to find what they are looking for and easy for them to pick stuff up, too. Do not get a toy box! With a toy box, kids throw everything into it and then end up tossing everything out when they go hunting for a particular toy. n Hudson Valley Parent 33

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