A Slob Comes Clean
Reality-Based Cleaning and Organizing
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Mentioned in this podcast:
My Thoughts on Hiring Someone to Clean Your Home
Pros and Cons of Having a Housekeeper
If I Only Had a Maid . . .
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Happy Dance going on here! I respect you so much for putting your kids first and love that you spend summers truly being present for them. But I’m so glad to have a new podcast in my feed! Can’t wait to listen to it!
Your “wipe down the bathrooms once a day” routine has revolutionized my cleaning process and my home. I always know that I can direct a chance guest to my bathroom WITH CONFIDENCE that they will be comfortable in there. However, I have also used a cleaning girl for several years at a time while I was taking care of my mother. It was both wonderful and difficult for the reasons you stated:) Thanks!
We tried hiring someone to clean once. A highly recommended group that was fully bonded and insured. They proceeded to break unbelieveable amounts of stuff in just one visit – a crystal decanter with bubble bath in it. Chipped a crystal ring holder. The wings off a kitchen fairy. An antique glass bowl. The stuff had tons of sentimental value, and much of it was irreplaceable. They also didn’t say a peep – so we continued to find broken things all over the house for days. I cried. The one thing I did witness them break they didn’t even say “Sorry.” for.
They also used an abrasive cleaner on our cultured marble counters that turned them yellow. And didn’t put things back where they belonged when they took them off a surface to clean them, or out of the dishwasher. I had to buy a new potato ricer (we never have found the old one), and it took us two years to find the cherry pitter (in a cabinet inside a margarita glass – because that’s where I would look for it wouldn’t you?)
To say it was an unmitigated disaster is the understatement of the year.
Not to mention trust… We have plenty of valuable things laying around (cameras, money, expensive gadgets, a furniture sized jewelry cabinet (wihout a lock!)). They are where they are because that’s where we need them to be to find them/use them, etc. What do you do when you know you are going to have someone in your house that you have no idea whether you can trust them or not? So you try to put them up somewhere safe (but when they are going to be cleaning your whole house – short of having a room sized safe – where is that?)
I think you should totally go ahead and get a cleaning professional come in on a regular basis while you write your books. It would be great to hear all about the experience of choosing someone, the good parts and the bad parts, how to work your own life around it, how it effects your own habits and your family. I know from experience that having someone come and clean the bathroom and floors is such a huge load off but at the same time it does not stop the clutter or change how the messes happen. For me it did mean I did a big pick up every time she was coming to clean. I may have said previously but having the cleaner come was the house cleaning contribution of the other person in the house.
But I wonder if it would allow you to focus on conquering other areas that you haven’t been able to conquer before, the garage maybe? I truly don’t think it will mean you won’t have blog content, and I think we, your readers, would love to know what having a professional cleaner help out in your home now – with kids and a hubby instead of housemates like in Thailand – is like from your perspective.
THanks for this perspective, Stella!!
I am feeling good. A lot of this feeling is due to the housekeeper having been here today.
I have “helped” my mom’s friend who was starting her own home cleaning business last year. While she had done mass apartment cleanings when people moved out, or business office cleaning, she had no experience in cleaning homes that had people living in them.
I have three kids and she has known me for about 15 years, so she was comfortable with asking my messy self if I wanted to let her learn for a very reasonable price.
I would have knocked her over when she told me how much if we weren’t sitting down.
I haven’t had her here every month, and she only does our living areas and bathroom, but those areas need it the most.
I have done so much better and every time someone comes over they definitely notice the space but her visits make the place shine.
It’s worth the cost to me and makes our home feel amazing. I’ll listen to the podcast later when I do the dishes, but for now I’m going to put my feet up and enjoy.
hello I am a house cleaner and love my work…I have a client each day 5 days a week and spend 3-4 hours at each house..yesterday i scrubbed 10 floors at one house..it is tiring work but feels so good to walk out the door with their dishes done diswasher unloaded..bathrooms laundry and closets organized ..one lady told me i saved her marriage I think it was an exaggeration but was glad to help..and the husbands really appreciate that their wives do not scream at them anymore…I charge $15 an hour which i think is a reasonable rate and love to clean ,,declutter and organize
This was my first podcast I listened to. Ever. I enjoyed it so much!! And i enjoy your blog!! I actually have someone clean once a week. I actually clean with her, which helps my child know that we need to clean and that mom does clean. Plus it gets done the way I like it. And I have a good idea where stuff got placed. I have medical issues which prevent me from doing the super heavy scrubbing stuff plus I am expecting a child. It helps me keep on top of everything as after it gets cleaned, I don’t want to mess it up! Toys get picked up, I will randomly dust or scrub something, I will say “now that it’s clean, how can I make it stay that way?” And barring a major hosting event or life situation, the place is considerably better each week before my housekeeper comes! (And amazing after).
Your blog really helps me focus. When you talk about your “projects” it helps me think: ok, what should I focus on over the next few weeks? And then I try to follow your concepts. I love that you do “what works for you” systems rather than “here’s my method” like someone else says. Which don’t work as I have a busy life, a kid, a family, a too small place…. And a slob brain…
If we couldn’t afford it weekly, I would try to scrounge around for at least monthly.
I’m listening to this podcast right now
When my husband and I first got married, we both had good jobs with above average pay. His job was about 75% of our income. We had a cleaning person who came weekly. Fast forward to 2009, recession etc. My husband lost his job. We loved having a cleaning lady so much that we canceled our internet, cable and downgraded our cell phones to the cheapest option. All in order to continue paying our housekeeper!!
Now, we can’t afford someone all the time but every few months we hire someone for a one time clean.
Also, I have worked with a local housekeeper periodically and I can tell you firsthand if you contact a small business owner/independent housekeeper they will find a solution to even a small budget.
For instance, I once worked a one-off type job where my tasks were to deep clean the refrigerator, bathroom and laundry room. Nothing else in the house.
It doesn’t have to be all or nothing. . .
P.S. Housekeepers, maids, cleaning persons, janitors are amazing and I <3 you all
Hi Dana, great podcast as always! May I say it just makes me happy to hear your voice? I have a house cleaner come every two weeks. The way I see it, there is plenty of work to be done around here, and I am happy to pay someone to do part of it! I am very independent minded too, but I have a busy job and two kids and a husband, and I don’t feel like spending 2 to 3 hours a week scrubbing showers, dusting blinds, vacuuming and mopping! Yay my cleaners! ? I’m delighted that you are able to do this right now.
And by the way, my kids and husband can barely tell the difference either. LOL. I guess that’s because they are not in charge of all those jobs!
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