20 Minutes to Clean

I’ve been on the 20 minute plan ever since I quit my job this last summer. I had a housekeeper that came in every other week when I was working at the studio, but with one less salary I decided that I could do without it. I knew I needed a plan.

I had bookmarked this plan from Apartment Therapy and I thought I would give it a try. I programmed my iphone and computer to give me alerts for each new task. So everyday I’m told what my 20 minutes will be. There’s still dishes, laundry and minor pick up (all Josh and Desi co-productions) that get done everyday along with the daily alerts.

I sometimes fall behind or need to do it all at once (house guests, etc.), but I think my house is more consistently clean than it ever was with a housekeeper. First of all when I knew it was all going to be clean at once I would procrastinate tasks so my house over two weeks would be come messier and messier. Don’t get me wrong I was still cleaning, it just wasn’t steady.
I would like to add some cleaning tools to my arsenal like that Dyson cordless vacuum. My house is small and when Josh and I were first married we bought a Rainbow vacuum, which is awesome, but cumbersome for quick rug and furniture clean up. I have one of these old fashioned sweepers, but it’s not always enough.

I use mostly Mrs. Meyer’s products and homemade concoctions, but I’m always a sucker for good packaging so some times I try something new. I usually return though.

Do you have a cleaning schedule or do you just wing it? Any tips?

images via: top – right, left  bottom – right, left

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  • Reply
    Natalie (Fashion Intel)
    November 29, 2011 at 1:07 PM

    This is the BEST idea! I love to clean but I can never get it clean enough. Cannot wait to integrate this system into my life.

  • Reply
    Desi McKinnon
    November 29, 2011 at 1:11 PM

    Natalie: Let me know what you think after you've done a couple of weeks. I would love to know.

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 4:09 PM

    Hmm, I kinda love this. As a former cleaning-loather, I can't deny that having a clean house (when I do, ahem) is well worth keeping up with it. It's been years since I had a cleaning service. Presently, Toby and do Sunday night cleaning (his: kitchen; hers: bathroom), and there's a regular Daddy-son vacuuming date on Mondays. We recently started getting religious about sweeping the kitchen floor every night. Seriously thinking of implementing a version of the AT idea, as I'm definitely in the do-it-all-at-once or not at all camp… but people change, right?

  • Reply
    Desi McKinnon
    November 29, 2011 at 4:13 PM

    Blake: I was the the do-it-all-at-once or not at all camp counselor;) I have changed my ways and I love it. It's not always perfect, but it's much closer than it ever was.

    I throw fits when Josh asks me to put my close away. Picking up brings out the inner 5 year old in me. Big Time.

  • Reply
    November 30, 2011 at 7:53 AM

    For some reason, when I first read this I thought you'd found a cleaning app — which quite likely exists or at least should!

    I'm one of those weirdos that doesn't mind cleaning. I have the 5 year old "I can do it all myself" gene. 😉 My biggest problem is that my house is huge and no matter how hard I try, my children and husband manage to trash it in my wake. I only just re-succombed to getting a cleaning lady a few months ago when I couldn't keep up. And while she does help out tremendously, I still grumble at all the things she misses or does wrong — like rearrange my styling or shove my kleenex into the box while she dusts the top. GAH!

    I guess I cannot win. (HAHAHA!)

  • Reply
    December 1, 2011 at 11:13 PM

    I love the idea. You are so organized. I'm not good at sticking to schedules and definitely not good at knowing where my phone is so that I'd be alerted on time. But I want to be! I just need to find 20 minutes a day because I really like a clean house. (although I, too, get mad when jason asks me to put my clothes away!)

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