I designated day one of Christmas break "Clean the House Day". I forewarned the kids that this would be a BIG day of cleaning. Everyone was going to participate. And we were going to clean the house top to bottom to get it out of the way so that we can enjoy the week without huge chores (just a little picking up each day).
I let them putter around a bit this morning, but at 9am we got to work and work we did until 3pm! Now, I wasn't a total slave-driver. We hit McDonald's for a lunch break.
They were awesome little cleaning elves. I gave them job after job after job and they went to it. There was some nagging in the beginning, but they got the idea pretty quickly.
One of the best parts of the day came while I was packing a few odds and ends into boxes and I overheard Anna singing "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" over and over again in the kitchen. I went to check on her and found her cleaning, wiping, drying, sweeping, arranging, and picking up trash with the speed and precision and attention to detail of a little cleaning elf. Made me think of Buddy the Elf -- happily working along with a song.
So today we (they):
- cleaned all the bathrooms (Conner-2, Me-1)
- swept & mopped the kitchen floor
- swept & mopped 2 bathrooms, the laundry room, and entryway (Conner)
- vacuumed out the couch cushions (Payton & Anna)
- dusted bookshelves, windowsills, and the piano (Payton)
- washed kitchen windows (Anna)
- cleared the kitchen of all clutter
- cleaned the counters
- scrubbed the stove-top, oven door, and dishwasher (Payton)
- washed the dining chairs (Conner)
- washed the kitchen cupboards (Payton & Anna)
- vacuumed downstairs
- vacuumed the stairs (Conner)
- cleaned the playroom
- cleaned the boys' room (Conner & Payton)
- washed my big tub (Payton & Anna)
- cleaned Anna's room (Anna)
- vacuumed upstairs
- lots of laundry including all the sheets & blankets & bath mats
- folded laundry (Payton & Anna)
- made beds
I didn't get any pictures of Conner but he was a big helper today. He single handed-ly kept the laundry moving all day long. And there was a lot of it. We started it at 9am this morning and it's actually still running with another load or two to go.
Around 2pm when the end was near, it was so fun to hear Payton and Anna as they walked through the house, "Wow! It's so clean!" I hope that statement wasn't surprise and shock because they haven't seen the house this clean before. . . . but rather feelings of excitement and pride in their own work. I'm going to go with the latter.
Upon completion we took a group walk around the house and in each room I explained why the room was so clean and what it will take to keep it that way. For now, I have promises from each of them that we'll work together to do a little cleaning each day to maintain it. We shall see.
It's dinnertime and I don't think this mom is up to cooking (or cleaning the kitchen again). I better go fish around for some Papa Murphy's coupons.
And I think I finally get my wish tonight . . . piling on the couch with blankets and pillows to watch Elf.