28 Apr Cleaning Supply Stockpiling and When It’s a Bad Idea
We just moved across several states. We hired four professional movers to play Tetris with our belongings so they’d fit in one ABF trailer, then strapped the sad remainder of our crap on a 14-foot trailer and drug it 1,200 miles to our new home. Sigh. These last few weeks have been big. And emotional.
All the while we were showing, selling, packing, and moving, I’ve also been writing my little head off. Two days before we rolled out of town, I finished up the last chapters of my book in preparation for editing. Somewhere amongst those last chapters I included some tips I’ve learned throughout the years that I’ve found helpful in attempting to raise kids that know how to work and do things for themselves. One of those tips, though simple, has made a big difference in how quickly and effectively we get chores done around the Norton household. Ready for it? Here it is:
Have ample amounts of logically-placed cleaning supplies.
Let’s be honest, time working side-by-side your kids is meaningful, yes. It’s important, yes. But it’s not necessarily something you’d want to last any longer than it has to. If you want to drag your family chores out as long as possible, then be sure to have only one or two of the supplies everyone needs and put them in a place nobody can get to without your assistance.
Or, you can be nice to yourself and not do it that way.
Instead, I’ve had a lot more success stocking each bathroom cabinet with every single cleaning supply they might need in order to have a sparkly clean bathroom without every leaving it–sanitizing wipes, glass cleaner, sink cleaner, sponge, paper towels, and a toilet bowl scrubber. All the supplies needed to clean the kitchen sink and kitchen appliances are kept under my kitchen sink so they need wander no further in search of them. The rest of my more random cleaning supplies (clean rags, dusters, cabinet cleaner, etc.) are in a laundry room cupboard where everyone can reach them when they need them. Oh, and I should mention there are multiples of those cleaning supplies as well.
Why all the cleaning supply stockpiling?
I don’t want chores to last any longer than they have to. And having kids wandering around the house searching for needed supplies, or waiting on a sibling to finish their job so they can have a turn wielding that specific cleaning tool is all just wasted time and gives them ample opportunities to wander and get distracted with something else. So the fact that I own five bottles of Windex may seem like overkill, but I have never looked back.
Until I moved. And drug five big moving boxes full of cleaning supplies across four states. Ridiculous.