January 28, 2014

Getting Organized | Waking up to a clean kitchen and Climbing in to a made bed

There are two things that I love.  Waking up to a clean kitchen and climbing in to a made bed.  After countless years spent waiting for someone else to make this happen I realized that this was a simple gift that I could give myself.  With just a few minutes at the start and end of my day I could give myself these small pleasures.

Cleaning the Kitchen

I'm sure anyone with small children can relate, what takes you 10 minutes to do alone will surely multiply by three with kids in tow.  They are my number one distraction.  They want to help.  They want a snack. They need some love.  Yes, Wells identifies her need for your undivided attention, as loving.  Momma, can you give me some love is always hard to turn down.  You see, they've already distracted me and they're not even in the room.

I like the ritual of making my coffee in the morning.  My kids like the ritual of me fixing them breakfast and getting them situated into the day.  Once we're up we are going in a million directions and that will only increase as the kids get older.  Starting the morning off with a clean slate makes all the difference.  I also make an effort to empty the dishwasher while I drink my coffee.  Leaving those clean dished in there too long sets off a pattern of mess.  I'm much more likely to keep the sink clean if our dirty dishes can go immediately into the dishwasher.


Walking into a mess puts me in a bad mood so I've started staying up a few minutes later at night and cleaning the kitchen. I make sure every pot is clean and dried and put away.  I run the dishwasher.  I clean off the counter tops.  This sounds so obvious but you wouldn't believe the number of times I used to go to bed with dishes in the sink only to start my day off on the wrong foot when I see them the next day.


I also try to wash pans, knives, and the cutting boards right after I use them throughout the day.  This keeps the nighttime cleaning to just a few minutes.  If I don't want to wash a dirty pan immediately after I enjoyed eating the meal it produced than I am sure as heck not going to enjoy washing it the next day when I'm hungry again.


 
Making the Bed

There is nothing better than climbing in to a bed that's made.  Tucking yourself into clean sheets and soft pillows lined up properly is always worth the extra four minutes in the morning.  After a long and exhausting day chasing after my two and three year old I don't want to wrangle messy linens off the floor in a sloppy attempt to relax.

I absolutely love a bed that looks like this or this or this.  My idea of a perfectly made bed involves several rows of pillows at the top, a pretty sheet folded down over the top blanket, and, a down comforter folded neatly at the end.  But you know what? Those last two steps takes an extra two minutes that I don't have.  It's one more step of effort that keeps me from bothering to make my bed at all.  I even tried a look like this which helped but still took just a bit too much effort.

So you know what I did?  I started placing my down comforter underneath my top blanket instead of on top.  It doesn't affect how it feels while I'm sleeping.  And it leaves me with just one giant sheet to straighten.  Everything gets tucked under the pillows.  Sheets and down comforter and blanket.  Simple.  Clean.  Not perfect.  But perfect for me.

What are your simple steps?  Are there any cleaning rituals you preform every day as a gift to yourself?  I've noticed that when I change my attitude about these tasks, they feel less like a chore.  Now if only I could learn to feel that way about putting away folded laundry.

34 comments:

  1. I am the SAME WAY with my kitchen - your exact routine, especially unloading the dishwasher first thing in the morning. And if I get thrown off, my whole day is a mess. I'm working on the bedroom routine. We have EIGHT pillows that we sleep with, plus it's a huge bed so it just takes forever to make. I want a new bedding set and if I ever find what I want, I hope it simplifies the bed making.

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  2. I'm with you on waking up to a clean kitchen, I think I exhale every morning walking in going to make my coffee. I feel already ahead of the game. A trick I learned from cleaning my pans so they are not stacked up or taking forever to hand dry...I put them back in the oven to dry on their own and pull them out and away in the AM. I hate cluttered counter tops. Also getting my coffee set up with the timer is a treat. Love waking up to the smell of it already being made. Then the kids wake up and then the craziness begins!

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  3. I completely agree with both. I too have been making a really conscious decision to have the kitchen cleaned and organized before bed (along with our entry/living & dining rooms). It is much easier once there is a system and everything has a place. I also love my bed made every single day, even if I don't have the chance to make it until the afternoon. ;)

    Angela @ Number Fifty-Three

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  4. Ugh- that is how I feel about ironing. Once a week, after my daughter goes to bed (and while my husband does the dishes...), I get my glass of wine and start ironing. I used to hate it so much. Our dining room table was always a holding spot for the large pile of clean laundry, it drove me up the wall crazy. Now, it's kinda relaxing and it keeps me sane!

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  5. There is nothing better than an empty dishwasher! I run mine once a day and love it when it is unloaded and ready for dirty dishes!

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  6. Love a clean tidy kitchen...may i ask where you got your kitchen rugs?

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  7. Where did you get the runner in front of your kitchen sink!? Your kitchen looks great!

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  8. I agree with you on routines like this to keep yourself sane. I try to always have the washer and dryer going before I go to sleep and no dishes in the sink. That was my New Year's resolution two years ago and thankfully it has stuck with me! :)

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  9. Totally agree - especially about the dishes. I do the cooking and Brandon does the after-dinner dishes, but I'm always the one to empty it. I've definitely found that if I put it off, the breakfast, lunch, etc. dishes pile up so much more. We also definitely make the bed before we go to bed - whether it was made all day or not. You just sleep better when you sheets are how they're supposed to be.

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  10. I agree with you. I will not go to sleep with a dirty kitchen no matter how late it is and I need my bed made every day. Even if I somehow skip making the bed during the day, I make it right before bedtime or I just can't get comfortable.

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  11. You are making me want to clean the kitchen and make the bed...of course I have a sleeping baby Bjorn-ed to me, so it will have to wait :-)

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  12. I love this post!! My husband and I disagreed on a made bed for years (he is a neat freak!), but I'm on board now. Climbing into a made bed feels better - all the sheets are alined and the covers completely cover you! I wish I was better about the kitchen. We always have dishes drying and we recently just painted it blue because with white cabinets, white counters, white floors and white walls I swear I saw spots ALL THE TIME. I'm the worst right after breakfast because I usually don't have time to clean up breakfast items and whatever I've prepared the kids for lunches so when I get home, everything is still out. I guess the simple solution would be to get up earlier - but that just seems too easy ;)

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  13. I totally agree with you! The last few months I have started this ritual as well. I make sure the dishes are done, coffee pot is ready for the morning, and the counters are clean. My husband just switched to a normal schedule so I'm able to make the bed in the morning now too--these are such little things but totally can throw my mood if they aren't done..silly as that sounds :)

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  14. I've found that too. I have to have some sort of routine or the house goes to pot. :) Some days things happen in a slightly different order due to schedules but as long as I get all of the same things done before I go to sleep I feel good.

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  15. I am 110% on the same page with you! I also use to leave dishes..ugh...it makes the biggest difference in feeling like I've already attacked something for the day even though I did it the day before! I also cannot get into an unmade bed. There are times when I'm in a rush to get out the door in the AM and still come home to make my bed even if I'm about to get in it in a few hours! It just makes a difference! I once read that your goal should be to have clean sinks (kitchen & bathroom)...thinking that way really does make those rooms always feel more under control! Love this post!

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  16. I cannot handle it when my darling husband doesn't make up the bed. He gets up at 10 and i get up at 6 so its his job. and he still refuses. Everyday. RAWRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRrr.

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    1. 110% our situation. I ask, I bed, I whine. I put my foot down. Now I just come back while he's in the shower so it gets done......

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    2. I have the exact same problem!!! It drives me insane- he does not care about a made bed, so just can't comprehend why I do! Grrrr!

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  17. But you know what's great about a lofty down comforter in a pristine white duvet? It covers a multitude of sins. Throw that sucker across your entire bed, lob the pillows on top, and call it done. Put out fires elsewhere and hug little hearts that need the love only Mama can give. The bed will look made up all day, and you can give it a boot-camp finish when you have a moment -- or not. Good post. Best wishes!

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  18. love your home, looks so soothing. I totally agree, if I take the time to straighten up it really improves my overall mood.

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  19. I'm right there with you! Now the boys clean the kitchen after dinner. Not exactly perfect, but learning. We always run the dishwasher at night and empty it first thing in the morning after making the bed of course :).

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  20. I completely agree! Especially about the bed. "The state of your bed reflects the state of your head." If my bed's a mess, you can bet where my head is. I feel focused and composed when my bed's neatly made. You are totally right- it's worth the 4 minutes!

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  21. love the tips! I love cleaning my kitchen before bed, too! Where did you get those big white shams and that quilt?? I NEED them in my life, haha.

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  22. Don't punch me in the face, but Todd makes our bed every morning. I told him it was that or dress a kid, and he chose the bed ;) And yes girl I cant sleep if the kitchen is a mess, or any room for that matter ha! I need help for my ocd ways. But really I just function better with neatness and order! Love these post!

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  23. I am a nightowl so this makes perfect sense to me. My husband, on the other hand, is a morning person and a snacker so he messes up what I have cleaned before bed and says, "I'll get it in the morning." Grrr. I hate dishes in the sink!

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  24. During the summer I make our bed every morning and just love getting into a crisp, made bed. During the school year, Bryce is still in bed when I leave the house and rarely makes it. I usually try and at least turn it down before we get it so it has that made bed feel!

    Dishes on the other hand....I have no problem leaving them in the sink overnight! That may change once kids enter the mix, though!

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  25. The best thing I ever did was stop using a top sheet. I was always getting tangled up in it and it was affecting my sleep. We use a comforter in the winter and a down blanket during the warmer months, and guess what, they're both covered in sheeting, voila!, my new top sheet! Bed-making is so much easier now...would never go back.

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  26. I agree with you too. Clean the kitchen before bed and make the bed in the morning. Other routines I have is I keep a basket upstairs and one downstairs. I put whatever needs to go upstairs or downstairs in it and take it up or down a couple times a day. At night if there are stray toys I throw them in the basket so it's out of the way. I also do one or two loads of laundry a day. I put the clothes away as soon as they are folded...if not they will sit in the basket and never get put away. I have to vaccum everyday due to having a beautiful but furry German Shepherd. I have hardwood floors and vaccum downstairs one day, upstairs the next. Lastly I do a "speed clean" every morning. I set a timer for 15 -20 mins and rush around doing a general straightening, emptying those baskets, wiping counters, mirrors, cleaning up after other family members etc. I use a timer and my 4 year old loves it. It's a game to him and he really helps. Now there are times I can't do it but I am finding 15-20 mins a floor really is making a difference. Plus it's helping me feel better...you know being an at home mom sometimes you feel like you do all the cleaning without any help but don't want to complain because your husband works hard making all the money. I am thinking of getting a cleaning service to come in twice a week but I am afraid I will want it to be weekly!!!

    Thanks for your tips! Got any more???

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  27. I just love your home. It is obvious you take great pride in it and it's care. Have a lovely evening! xo Nancy

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  28. I love this! Thse are kind of my two main things as well. My husband loves to "let dishes soak." It baffles me. Nothing is so encrusted on that it needs to soak overnight and I hate standing water. Your bed looks heavenly!

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  30. It was so refreshing to read your blog post. I am the EXACT same way.... I have to have a clean and clutter free kitchen and a made bed. It just keeps everything else flowing smoothly... it truly is the simple little things that can help start a day off right. Thanks for sharing.... it makes me feel a little less crazy about my need for these things :)

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  31. I simply can't go to sleep with a dirty kitchen and dishes in the sink, I just can't. As you say, cleaning it all really makes a difference and sets the mood for the right start of the day!

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