Cleaning Tips and Tricks

{Toy's and Clean It's}

I've had a few people ask me to share some tips on how I get motivated, or go about getting things organized... So I put a little post together about how I think, when it comes to my house.

And also some pictures of the CLEAN toy room.
Since this room is usually a mess 90% of the time... with kids playing, I thought I would show you how it looked when I finally got to it, and took control.
The girls actually helped me and we had a good time. A bin for dress ups, a bin for babies and their stuff, and another basket for the rest of their toys!
I am a chronic toy throw-er outter-er. I HATE broken, un-played with toys. So I go through them at least once a month and toss out or get rid of the broken/McDonald type/grown out of toys! I usually give them to the DI (Deseret Industries). It's a great way to keep our "toy crazyness" in check.
Plus, my kids actually PLAY BETTER with the toys I keep because they can SEE what they have to play with, rather than opening up a closet, to find a random mess of stuff!

Declutter it!
Even if this takes a WHOLE day, by itself... DO IT!
THROW and GIVE stuff away! You’re NEVER gonna use that “kinda” broken toy,
or need more than one set of beatters for your kitchen. Don’t live in the “Well what if
I need it one day?” mode... instead live in the “I have a place for this and actually use
it!” mode. I find that it really helps! And to be really honest... I go to extremes to
eliminate cutter, and only... maybe TWICE in my whole life have I said... “Oh dang,
I should have kept that.”
So, don’t be afraid to give away those old dusty curtains that don’t really match
anything anymore, or that wierd ugly cheap picture frame that you got for a white
elephant gift, this Christmas. YOU’LL NEVER use it! Let someone else. DI, Goodwill,
or Salvation Army it!

Deep Clean it!
No... REALLY... DEEEEEP clean it! You know that nasty dust that is caked up on the
baseboards, the dusty hair film that is under your bathroom sink, and the
gross gunk that is caught in your fabric softner holder, in your washing machine?
GET IT! I usually take ONE room... a day, till I've reached all the rooms. I tell myself... “K... I’m gonna clean the master bathroom today” And don’t stop, till it’s done!
It’s SO hard to motivate yourself, but it’s WORTH IT!

Storage it! (it’s cheap!)
Making sure that EVERYTHING has a proper place, is KEY in getting organized!!!
NO JUNK DRAWERS! And I feel like a great way to do this is to make storage fun,
cute, and easy to actually GET to! I went to Walmart this weekend and picked up
some of their small $1.00 storage bins and further organized my garage. Putting
nails, drill bit heads, and tools into seperate bins. Ever since I’ve cleaned out the
garage, I feel like it’s an extention of my HOUSE, rather than a place that I try to
avoid! It’s amazing how many projects I actually WANT to work on, because now,
I have the space! It makes getting things done... FAST and easy, when you know
where everything is. This goes for ALL rooms in the house.

Reward yourself...Add to and Decorate it (even on the cheap!)
Once you’ve got a space... CLEAN and organized... usually the next thing I want to do is make it
my own. For example... once you have the laundry room totally clean... get a cute
inexpensive small basket to store your dryer sheets in, or purchase a cute new, fun colored laundry basket! It’s a small detail, and may sound silly, but it WILL
make a big difference in your attitude. People tend to take care of their things better
when they appreciate how great they look, and how much time and effort it took to
get it that way.
I recently redid my laundry room, and find that I actually WANT to be in there. I even
leave the light on and the door open, so I can look at the cute things that I’ve done.
LOL. And if you know me at ALL, then you KNOW I HATE laundry! (my key to that
problem is NOT letting it build up. And even if it KILLS me... I make myself do a laod
of clothes EVERY day, and fold and put it away, EVERY night, so I hardly ever get behind.)
Once again... now the laundry room has become an extension of my home, rather than a place I dread!

Take pride in all your Work! Keep it up!
Picking up my house, pulling up the beds, quickly dusting and windexing a hand-printed mirror has become part of my morning routine... just like taking a shower.
If you keep it up everyday, once it's done, then you DON'T have to spend an entire day... JUST on your house. It sure makes things a LOT less stressful in the end.
Make it a habit.
It may sound a little stuffy, or old fashioned, but when my hubby comes home from work, he can just relax, and enjoy the CLEAN house, instead of stumbling over toys.
(plus... I can make him start helping me on a different project around the house, instead of stopping to pick up first. hee hee)
And when I've done MY part... of keeping the house clean, he does his... naturally. Instead of throwing his work clothes on the bed/chair/floor... He will HANG them UP!... Because... in HIS words... "everything else looks so nice, that I don't want to mess it up!"
yeeesssssssssss. lol.
side note... I have to tell you that I overheard Cason talking to my brother about keeping a clean house... and he said...
"I guess I just kinda realized one day, that if something needs to be done, or cleaned up, and I just walk pass it and DON'T do it... that the only OTHER person, right now, who will HAVE to do it.... is Shelley.... That's not really fair."
Woah! lol. My stomach actually did a FLIP for joy, when I heard that! HE GET'S IT!!!!! :)
In all fairness, I think he always DID, but it didn't REALLY hit him, until this past year, when he was out of a job, and was home alot... and saw exactly WHAT I did all day.

So to sum this all up...
Yes, I think that cleaning, keeping things organized and in order comes easier to some people then others... but EVERYONE CAN do it! I have a hard time when people say...
"Oh, I just have too many kids, and it's just too hard to do"
Well... I have three, under the age of 4, and they are EVERYWHERE, but since I've instilled in THEM that Mommy is SO proud when they help pick up toys, or keep things clean... they have more respect for me... AND their home. It's just like learning how to say your ABC's or 123's... eventually it just becomes second nature, and you won't have to grill your hubby or kids. (or at least that's what I've kinda figured out) They love you enough to help you out, if you ask for it!

And if you feel overwhelmed, and don't know where to start... just take a drawer, or a cupboard, and start there.... and then MAKE yourself keep it JUST as nice, for a WHOLE WEEK.
Just start small!
In the end... it will feel GREAT to be able to just scan your house, and pick up and KNOW that everything has a place! It makes the "stay at home Mom" job, SO much easier and more enjoyable, when you LOVE the space you're in! I find that it's therapy when I can focus on my KIDS and not on my laundry and house. It will totally be worth your time and effort!


  1. So true...thanks for sharing all your tips and suggestions. Thanks for your inspiration,you're awesome Shelley :)

  2. Amen. Now, if I could only put this into practice....I think MANY of us are stuck in the "some day" mode, "Some day I will get really organized and things will be just right" but then the someday keeps getting pushed back huh? Great post Shelley!
    You would love the "Fly Lady", google it:)

  3. Ahhhh you and I are so alike on our cleaning/purging of STUFF!! All the fast food toys last about a month in our house and then they magically disappear! And my son never misses them! I never touch the daily toys and things that he plays with (meaning throwing out or donating), but the rest of the stuff is free game. He's never even noticed the stuff that I've gotten rid of. He told us last week that he "wanted to go thru his toy box and donate some stuff to other little kids that don't have things"... I could have cried... Gunner is only 5 years old! And when he has less stuff to be responsible for, it's much easier for him to clean the toy room by himself!

    Great read! I'm a new follower and am loving your blog!

  4. I love this post! and all your others. I look to you for inspiration all the time. I am so jealous of your talents and creativity.

  5. I like the idea of rewarding yoursel when you clean a space


Thank you for taking the time to leave your thoughts and comments. We truly love and appreciate each one!