When you think back to last summer, do you ever think “Gosh, I wish I had spent less time outside with the kids and more time inside, cleaning up the house?” A safe guess is no! It’s more likely that you wish you had been outside enjoying the feel of grass under your feet and the sun on your face; and most importantly the ear to ear grins and belly laughter of your kids, enjoying their summer days and nights. The challenge is that a certain level of organization and house work is required to keep everyone clean, fed and happy, even during the lazy days of summer. The solution? Do a little upfront work to make the necessary housework as effective and efficient as possible. Specifically, decluttering your house will make cleanup a breeze so you can spend more time outside playing with the kids. Your regular nanny or the summer nanny can hep you with this task easily. The key is to know what to do it and delegate.
Do not underestimate the build-up of “school stuff” over the last 9-10 months, nor the increased flow (i.e. more stuff) that comes with the end of the school year. Recognize that you and your family are transitioning from the school year to the summer period and be deliberate in reorganizing and decluttering:
Some final tips: Remember that school clutter is found EVERYWHERE! Check the car, the garage, and the kids rooms too! School Year build-up has probably permeated every corner of your world so make sure to give all of it some of your attention. You are not in this alone! Engage your kids in this process: it will be a fun way to close the year and teach them some valuable life lessons. Nanny, babysitters and housekeepers can be invaluable helpers as well!
Setup the Summer Gear
Now that you have all the School Gear out of the way, get your nanny involved to help you get the Summer Gear out! Summer clothes and shoes. Swim Suits, Towels, Bags, Games and Toys. You know what your family uses most in the summer. Pull it out, make sure it is ready to use and make it easy and accessible for everyone in the family.
A clutter-free house is an easy to clean house. Well… easier to clean is probably more like it! for or your summer nanny! After you have the kids school year and summer gear sorted out, it is time to look inward!
The key with clutter is to ensure that everything has a home. You need a space to place everything that you have and if you don’t have the space, it’s time to look at what you don’t need.
Take a tour of your house and look for your biggest clutter danger areas. (TIP? The dining room table and accent chairs seem to take the brunt of it!) Do you keep months (or years!) of old magazines? Why not tear out articles you want to read later and recycle old issues? Do you drop your mail around the house before weeding out the junk? Does your office paperwork come home with you and then spread like a mould? Does your love of knick knacks make dusting a simple coffee table a long and arduous process? Look at what doesn’t work and fix it.
With a house that is organized and clutter free, you, and your nanny, can keep your bouts of cleaning short and focused and maximize the fun you have with your kids outside. You can also maximize your fun by getting some help—whether to clean the house regularly or for special projects; a regular nanny or ad hoc babysitter.