There is someone coming over, and your counters are still covered with the lunch-making items. The mayo has the knife in it, the bread loaf is open, and there is a bag of chips on the counter about to spill onto the floor.
Is this a normal sight an hour after everyone is off to work, or worse yet, when you get home from work? Make your cold items last longer by following your own kitchen plan. Yes, even if it is just you. Write out your kitchen plan and hang it on the fridge.
How do we make it fun? How do we take an everyday activity and make it fun? You do the same thing every day. The same lunch meat the same chips the same juice. One way that I make it fun is to hang a timer on the fridge next to my Kitchen Plan. After the lunches are made and all the stuff needs to be put away and the counter wiped or it is after supper and the dishes are left behind. Set your timer and follow your Kitchen Plan:
- Close all cabinet doors (Start at the sink and go around the room in one direction.)
- Wipe them as needed (Only wipe here if there was a spill. The rest can be for major cleaning.)
- Place all dishes in the sink, fill items that need to soak.
- Put away all supplies. (Gather like items, as many as you can safely grab at a time.)
- Wash all the dishes or put them into the dish washer.
- Wipe the counters.
- Sweep the floor. Vacuuming it with aeg staubsauger is another good option.
Stop the timer. Here you can dance around at how fast that you finished. Next time you may be faster. This can be more enjoyable if you list your times on a small white board placed on the fridge. Also, you can include others into the mix. One way to include others is by assigning a job for the week. Allow them to time themselves as well and they can improve on their times each day. We also start on each side of the sink and head in different directions. Meet in the middle. If one needs more time then the other keeps going around until they are both done. The goal can be to see how fast the job can be finished. Work together and you will bring more joy to your day and spend a little time with your helper.
Guard against competing with each other. Most of us do not like the chore of cleaning and even less the idea of loosing. If you allow competition in this fun game then you may find that one of your helpers will hate this game more that just cleaning. To keep this from taking place give each member of the family a different chore. Explain that different chores will take a different amount of time. Also, you can make it a team effort and time how long it takes the team to finish the whole job. Posting the times on a dry erase board will lessen the desire to compare one members time of taking out the trash last week to the next members time the next week.
If you do not want to use the timer or do not have one then just give a small gift, or treasure to yourself for each job completed. If you like chocolate then put out a chocolate chip for every job that you have on your list. When you finish that job then eat a chocolate chip off the plate. Chocolate has serotonin which is an anti-depressant and it releases endorphins in your brain. This will make your brain or your child’s brain think that cleaning brings joy.
Relay cleaning can also be used. Have one person on the side clapping and urging the first cleaner on. The baton can be a sponge, wash clothe or even a paper towel tube. The paper towel tube can be set at the starting point and then grabbed and handed to the next relay cleaner when finished. To speed things up you can allow a special activity like painting if they get done by a set time. If they do not get done in the set time you may consider giving an alternate activity that everyone can do. After all the work is finished and that is the main goal. We should reward ourselves for working hard even if the reward is just a smile and a feeling of satisfaction.
Cleaning the Kitchen is an everyday job. Make the mundane into a game and enjoy the daily tasks. Remember to start at one place and go completely around the room completing one chore before starting the next. Enjoy!!!
Next: Some ideas on the cleanest living room in town. How to use baskets or file holders.