Wednesday, March 18, 2009

What can you do with 15 minutes?

With a 2 month old, 19 month old, 4 1/2 year old (that we have part time - with different rules/routines at his mom's vs. our house), and a 12 month old (I babysit every other day) things get a little crazy. With that much going on my house definitely needs to be clean, but it is often difficult to find time to clean it. In addition to all that is going on with the kids we are battling lots of STUFF that hadn't found a home since we move in over 1 1/2 years ago and STUFF that had been accumulated since then. After I healed from having our son and knew that I was going to be staying home permanently I vowed to do something about the CHAOS that lurked around every corner. But what? I was so overwhelmed with the clutter I needed to tackle.

Not knowing where to start I joined a SAHM forum on Facebook. I found a lot of ideas, but none that seemed to fit my family and our overwhelming situation. Then, one of the mom's suggested Flylady! I decided to check it out and found my solution. The first idea I took hold of was her 15 minute idea. This just said to focus on ONE area (don't get sidetracked) and doing what you can in 15 minutes. Whatever you don't get done you simply come back to later. I wasn't sure I could leave something undone after I started it, but I thought I could likely spare 15 minutes once or twice throughout the day and actually get something done instead of putting it all off because I wouldn't have time to finish it.

My first 15 minute session I decided to focus on the toys that were from my front door to the back and everywhere in between (it looked like a tornado hit the house - you know what I'm talking about). I set my timer and off I went! To my surprise I had ALL the toys picked up in 5 minutes. So, with my additional 10 minutes I decided to pick up the trash and dishes from the living room and dining room. Having completed this with time to spare I folded all the blankets the kids had drug out to build a fort. WOW - my whole living room, the dining room floor, and half (ok, maybe 1/3) of the dining room table was cleared! Maybe this Flylady was onto something! I was able to steal 3 more 15 min. sessions that day and was able to completely clear off my dining room table, clear off and wipe down all but one of my kitchen counters, unload & reload the dishwasher, do two loads of laundry, and clean out my refrigerator of old food! All that in addition to the living room, so I had picked up and surface cleaned 2 1/2 rooms and made a dent in the laundry pile.

This is a practice I've held onto since then and have really been able to accomplish so much using it. You really would be AMAZED at what you can accomplish in 15 MINUTES! So, check out Flylady and set your timer for 15 minutes - post a comment, let me know what you are able to get done!

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