Guess what? I accomplished week one of deep cleaning and I'm ready to share my pictures and my deep cleaning list with each of you ! The first question to answer is how I divide my home - I simply follow the Flylady's Zone list so, on the 2nd week of the month, you work in your kitchen. If you are just starting out, you take 15 minutes a day to declutter until you are done. It may be done in one week or it may take 2-3 (or more) months to get it done. Once you have finished decluttering, you can spend 15 minutes a day deep cleaning that room during the zone week. The rest of the month, you just do you Weekly Home Blessing Hour, which hits all of the "visual" spots. She also gives zone tasks each week for the assigned room which you can do along with the cleaning which helps hit some of those odd areas we miss.
Let's start with some before pictures -
One of the first things you need when you tackle deep cleaning are your favorite cleaning products. Yes, I know that many people want either homemade cleaners or other non-chemically based cleaners. For me, I have my favorite cleaners and they don't fit the above . ..
Here are my after pictures :
When I deep clean my kitchen the very first thing I do is :
1) Wipe down the counter tops, moving everything and wiping down the walls and outlets as I go. I find if I do this first, I'm able to also put stray items away and clean counters always make the kitchen seem cleaner. This is also when I wipe off the coffee maker, mixer, and anything else on the counters as well. Some things get thrown in the dishwasher but most just get wiped down.
2) Next I open all of the cupboard doors (when they are up!), stand back and look at them carefully. I look for dirty shelves (such as the coffee shelf) and wipe them down. I do NOT take everything out from every cupboard - just the ones that really need it. I also look for items out of place or items we haven't used in forever and either find the right home or put it in the good will box.
3) Clean the sink - not just wipe it down but actually scrub it including taking a toothpick or a tooth brush and scrubbing around the edge of the sink to get all of that gross stuff out that collects under that edge. This is the time I replace hand soap/lotion/dish soap if it is needed also.
5) The Floors - First, I vacuum everywhere, the rugs, the corners, the ceiling, the steps. Every corner gets vacuumed. I also vacuum under the fridge to clean out the vents. Next I use the Swiffer sweeper to get any loose hair that the vacuum missed. Finally, I hand mop my floor. I also look at cupboard doors and the bottom of appliances while down there and wipe those off as well.
6) Clean out baskets on drop zone shelf - this is self explanatory. I just make sure that the junk gets thrown out and the shelf is wiped off.
7) Clean the patio window and inside of kitchen window
8.) Wipe down the banister
9) Clean off the porch - this is our main entrance so I take time to make sure it looks nice :-)
10) A few times a year: I wash the outside of the kitchen window, wash curtains, pull unused dishes from top shelves and run them through the dishwasher, clean out the light fixtures and do touch up paint as needed. A lot of those items are done in the winter with the exception of the window - my husband cleans the outside of the windows/screens for me during the summer (I can't reach them, even with a ladder!)
Now, before you think my kitchen never gets clean again . .. each week, it gets a quick clean. First, the counters, sink, and stove top are cleaning daily (many times ha!). The floors are swept and mopped with the steam mop at least once a week during my Weekly Home Blessing Hour (the patio door and appliances get a quick wipe down too!) . So the basics are done - this deep cleaning gets in the corners and makes everything really clean. Something else I do during deep cleaning is I throw the pet bowls in the dishwasher and get them clean.
So, that's it. On average, it takes about one hour to one hour and 15 minutes to get through that list.
Darryl noticed as soon as he walked in the door on Friday AND he loves the clean counters so much he has gone out of his way to help me keep stuff picked up. I'm loving it too! Maybe this will inspire you just a little to get some cleaning done too. On a side note, if you do this once a month you will find that it takes less and less time to get it done (because you are keeping up with it all), you won't ever have to kill yourself spring cleaning because it will be clean already AND when you get those unexpected guests, you'll know that your house is clean :-)
Next week - the bathroom and one extra room :-)