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I love to call my family a work-in-progress, and I love to call myself one, because isn’t that what we all are? I feel like it’s been slow going for me – to turn into the kind of wife, mother and friend I’ve always wanted to be. Some things have never come naturally for me, and one of those main things is house cleaning! I’m learning to cook and bake, as you all know, but did you know I’m learning to clean better too? I’ve learned as a mother and home-owner that I need HELP with the house.
One thing I’ve learned from having two kids is that age-appropriate chores are appreciated by all. They bring us closer as a family because my kids love to help, and we love to have them help. Folding laundry is a family activity in our house, and it goes so much quicker that way. It can be fun, and there’s always those times in which Des dive-bombs into a big pile of clean laundry, but that’s another story! Scarlet first started showing interest in chores when she was three, and now Des does too.
The challenge for me is patience. I need to learn to take a deep breath and instruct them on how they can help. I’m a bit of a perfectionist with such things, especially since they DON’T come naturally to me, so it’s tempting to just do everything by myself. No one learns that way, though. The kind of wife and mother I want to be? Is to be someone on a team. An equal.
Now that it’s officially March, I made a list of age-appropriate chores for kids, and how to spring clean as a family. Every year, we go big with organization, new clothes, donating old clothes, and sending items off to charity.
Here are five ways to make spring cleaning fun for the whole family!
1. Turn cleaning into a game. Well, of course! Isn’t everything better as a game? Last year we went seasonal and got a great idea from my father-in-law. It’s like an Easter Egg Hunt. He hid chocolate bunnies under piles of clothes, in their closets, in storage bins, etc. The kids would find them for weeks during Easter season last year. I think it’s also an incentive to fold clothes, clean closets, and pick up toys when chocolate bunnies (or eggs) are hiding. You can hide stickers, if not chocolate.
2. Have a plan. Growing up as one of five kids, we wouldn’t have been able to pitch in without a clear-cut plan. We had to strategize exactly who was responsible for certain jobs, rooms or zones in the house. It made us feel important & helpful!
3. Make it into a movie. This is absolutely a Scarlet thing, but she loves to make “How to” movies at home. Sometimes we actually video her, and sometimes we just pretend. Either way, she loves to instruct how to do life things – and one of those things is cleaning or folding laundry, etc. She even has a pretend audience. This absolutely gets her to help us clean!
4. Make it kid friendly. There are many ways you can do this. You can fill squirt guns with cleaning solutions (a gallon of water mixed with one drop of dish soap) instead of spray bottles. Then let the kids squirt windows and mirrors and then wipe them down with paper towels. You can also give your kids their own cleaning tools – either by buying smaller ones or making them yourself. You can fill a tote with gloves, brushes, sponges and mini bottles for them to carry around. Also, play kid friendly music for playing and make sure your kids have a snack or meal before spring cleaning. Nothing kills a moment more than a hunger meltdown! Every kid is different, and might require different ways to make spring cleaning more kid-friendly, but I have been pleasantly surprised at how well these tips have worked with Scarlet and Des. I’m a believer now.
5. Never underestimate the power of Snuggle®. When we added Snuggle® Ultra Blue Sparkle fabric conditioner and blue iris bliss® Snuggle Scent Boosters® to our household, laundry became more enjoyable and more of a family activity. Not only are these products better together, but we are better together! I know that sounds silly, but folding clean, soft, good-smelling laundry together is so much better than doing it alone. Snuggle® creates more snuggle-up moments.
Now that the kids are older, we decided to introduce softeners and scent enhancers to our laundry routine. The laundry stays fresher longer, and feels softer to the touch. Snuggle® Ultra Blue Sparkle fabric conditioner and blue iris bliss® Snuggle Scent Boosters® offer fantastic benefits at a great value. Snuggle® Ultra Blue Sparkle fabric conditioner provides our laundry with Snuggly Softness® and 30 Days of Freshness. The blue iris bliss® Snuggle Scent Boosters® come in easy-to-use single packs and provide our clothes with long-lasting fresh scent. Make sure to follow the directions on the package and loosely pack clothing in the washer when using scent boosters. This will ensure all garments have a long-lasting scent boost you’ll enjoy.
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