August 28, 2010
Home Projects and Zone Cleaning
All summer it has been too hot and rainy to do much work on the outside of the house and now that fall is just around the corner, I/we feel under a lot of pressure to get some things done. We have joked lately that we should sell the house and move into a two bedroom condo and let someone else do the yardwork. It's been an ongoing joke in that when we are doing yard work we will ask "where is the joy of homeownership?"
Tomorrow afternoon I plan to spend some time going over the calendar for the month of September and schedule some days to be outside scraping and painting the house and the picket fence. When the days are cooler it is much better to be outside anyway.
You just can't get too hard on yourself when you get behind. The house isn't going to fall to the ground if we don't get it painted this year, but we sure would like to try to get it done.
On Thursday I visited with a woman from my church. She retired a couple of years ago and she told me that the first year she was home, she felt kinda lost. She wasn't used to not having a work schedule and it took almost a year to get used to be retired. I identified with what she was saying. It would seem that after one year of being home that I should be further along with projects than I am, but it has been quite an adjustment for me to not have a job outside the home.
Also, I never thought that housework - cleaning, laundry, cooking, grocery shopping and such would take so much time. I knew that being home involved work, but I always thought I should be able to get everything done and kept up. That was a little unrealistic thinking. It's funny how when I was working I envisioned how my home was always going to be moderately clean and in order. I forgot that just as I could get distracted and side tracked at work, the same is true at home.
Something else I learned about myself this year is that I hate to clean. I love to cook, do laundry, sew and work on home projects, but I hate to clean. Yet, I love a clean home. With that in mind, I have been trying to come up with ways to make house cleaning more manageable to me. I cannot clean my entire house in one day. I have back trouble and it is impossible for me to do this without having to be in bed the next day recuperating. Instead I have divided my home into 5 zones. Zone 1 - Kitchen and Den; Zone 2 - dining room, living room, entry way, hallway and downstairs bathroom; Zone 3 - Upstairs bathroom, stairs to the upstairs; Zone 4 - master bedroom, spare bedroom, sitting area (all upstairs); Zone 5 - laundry room, basement family room.
The kitchen takes me the longest to clean so I teamed it up with an easy to clean room, the den. I considered this when I was dividing my house into zones in that I teamed up easy to clean rooms with hard to clean rooms. I calculated that the most it should take me to thoroughly clean each zone is 2 hours and if I take 5 days out of the week to do a zone in the morning, then I should be able to keep up on the house work. Of course each day I tidy up bathrooms and do a general pickup that doesn't take much time and I don't include in the zones.
This is working for me. It would be nice to clean the entire house in one day, but it isn't going to happen so I had to come up with an "easy on my back" cleaning schedule.