There is nothing quite like sitting down and relaxing in a freshly cleaned living room! I know, because it only stays clean once the kids are in bed! In our house, we have a living room and a front room that is as large as the living room part, so I do this list twice; once for each room. Now, because these rooms are so lived in, it will be important to have a 'clean slate' to start with. Meaning, get the kids to pick up their toys, get the junk put up in its proper place, and then you can start with the deep cleaning! I know that cleaning the living room is my kids' favorite place to clean, because they love finding all the toys that they've lost in the hidden cracks, the past week. So, get that book or dance music going, and let's get started!
Dust down the ceiling and corners of walls. These walls should only need a dry dusting, with either a microfiber cloth, or Swiffer dusters. If there are scuff marks on the walls, then use a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser to erase them!
Kids can take a microfiber cloth and help you dust the walls! Make is a game. See who can get the most dust bunnies, or make their cloth the dirtiest the fastest! It will also help you, because you won't have to get down on your knees to clean the bottoms of the walls.
Dust and clean all art and photographs along the wall. Use caution when cleaning framed pictures. Don't spray the cleaner on the art, as it could seep behind the glass and destroy your art work. Spray your cleaner on a microfiber cloth and clean.
Kids can help you dust the pictures, too. If you're worried about them breaking the glass, then have them help you squirt the solution onto your cloth. Remember, you’re not just trying to Spring clean your house, you're also trying to teach them to clean and spending time with them!
Dust and clean the ceiling fan. I find that taking a pillow case, and sliding the blade into the pillow case, and gently rubbing the pillow case against the blades is enough. You don't have to worry about the dust going everywhere; it's all trapped in the pillow case! If you need to wash the blades, pouring something like Lysol multi-purpose cleaner in a bucket, and diluting with water is perfect too. Take down any light fixtures and gently wash and dry them before replacing.
Obviously, there really isn't much that the kids can do on this one. Having your child on a ladder, trying to help clean the blades is not a good idea. But, they could help you dry the light fixtures, or hand you the towels to dry them (if you don't want them helping around the glass).
Take down draperies, curtains, and blinds to wash or have cleaned according to the manufacturer's directions. Vacuum and clean windowsills and corners. Wash the insides and outsides of the windows. Take down and rinse off screens, before replacing.
Kids love to help vacuum. If you think they can handle the attachment by themselves, then let them! If they don't have the dexterity to handle it, then help them do it. Spray some glass cleaner on the windows and let them clean it off!
Dust and clean out the couches and chairs. Vacuum the inside and outside of your couch thoroughly. Make sure to look for any hidden items before you vacuum. Clean slipcovers, accent pillows, etc. Use a rug shampoo machine's upholstery attachment to shampoo if needed. If a light cleaning is needed use upholstery spot cleaner. Test in a hidden area first.
Kids can help vacuum the furniture, using the attachments. If you have to shampoo them, they can help you hold the attachments as well. Just make sure they aren't handling the chemicals!
Dust down and clean all accent lamps and knickknacks. Dust, using a microfiber cloth or Swiffer duster, all the lamps, their shades and stands. Use a vacuum and it's attachment to clean the shades if necessary. Clean all the knickknacks on the tables and shelves.
Your kids can help you clean any non-breakable items.
Remove books from bookshelves. Take down the books and clean gently. Clean the shelves and roganize shelves.
My kids love to organize books, trying to put them in alphabetical order. If that's fine with you, let them help you reorganize the shelves.
Dust down accent tables and the entertainment center. If you can get access to it, unplug your electronics and clean. Mine are built in to an entertainment center, so I doubt I could do it easily without my husband's help. Just dry dust here. You don't want any chemicals around the electronics.
If your kids can help here, great! They can help dust the tables, the DVD player, etc.
Clean the carpets and rugs. If your carpets and rugs are heavily soiled it may be time to rent a cleaning machine to use. Be sure to ask for one with an upholstery attachment. If your carpets are only lightly soiled, vacuuming and spot treating may be all that is necessary.
Depending on the level of cleaning needed, the kids can help vacuum the floors. Those cleaning machines are heavy and loud, and really shouldn't be used with a child around, just in case you lose control of the machine.
Take the time to clean the doormats inside and outside your doorways. If you can wash the doormats, wash them and let them air dry. People aren't allowed to wear shoes in our home, but we have a pebble tray that people can put their shoes on, so that any dirt, mud, or water doesn't get on our hardwood floors. If you have something similar, clean it out. I would use an antibacterial spray on that, as you never know what people have stepped thru!
Depending on what you have, the kids can put the doormat in the laundry, or help you wipe down a tray for the shoes.
Now, sit back and relax in your clean living room! And hurry up and enjoy it, before the kids decide to bring their toys back in and mess it all up! Tomorrow, I'll detail how to clean the bedrooms!
Until Next Time,