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How to Make Your House Look Clean in 15 Minutes or Less

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Is there anything that can drive us more crazy that a mess? Wouldn’t it be nice to wave a magic wand and say, “Mess be gone!?” It seems like no matter where you turn, you are looking at it, you are stepping on it, you are living with it. Not to mention, when last minute or unexpected guests are on their way over, this is the perfect solution for taking the house from chaotic mess to presentable. As a work at home, stay at home, homeschooling mom of 9, I know firsthand how quickly a mess can appear. It is amazing how easily and quickly a mess can invade every little corner of my home simply because life happens. I can try my best, but the mess happens so fast. Sometimes, you just need a clean house fast!

Can you relate?


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I don’t know about you, but with a mess in the house, my brain can just kind of go bonkers. Messes are like a bunch of loud noise in my head. So, I set about finding a way to just quiet that noise in a hurry.

While I can’t give you a magic wand, I have found what I think is the best-kept secret for dealing with a mess. Let me tell you, with a house full of nine children, we have plenty of messes to put this method to the test.

I’ve got the secret to making your house look clean (& is ready for unexpected guests) in 15 minutes or less!

10 minute tidy

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Alright, here’s how this secret works.

It’s all about having a place to put all that mess in a pinch.

The secret is about being able to give it a temporary place to go until you can devote the time needed to take care of it all correctly.

And, it’s about doing what works in the moment.

Click HERE or on the picture below to see what I use. Then, keep reading to see how to put it to good use so you can get rid of the messes in your home.

 

Although I spoke briefly of this in Five Simple Strategies for Hiding Clutter, I find it may be worth revisiting and elaborating on.

Here’s how to get a huge mess cleaned fast

I have one of these baskets the hallway just outside all of our bedrooms.

I don’t know what it is about the hallway, but it drives me crazy when it’s cluttered.

When it is literally covered from one end to the other with the trails of all of the things my kids just dropped, my head goes crazy.

It really drives me insane when kids take what isn’t theirs from their room and throw it into the hallway. But, this is often how things end up in the hallway.

Technically, this is a no-no here, but it is still something that happens all the time.

My kids are supposed to set these items nicely on the bed of the person they belong to. But, this hardly every happens.

toy organization small house

Where are your problem areas like this? Where does a mess collect in your home?

Choose two, three, or maybe four areas to put one of these baskets.

Here is how these baskets saved me just last night.

As I came up the steps and the hallway came into view, I could immediately feel my irritation continuing to grow from the mess I had already seen downstairs.

Thankfully, I just spent a minute or two throwing everything into the mess baskets in the hallway and continued on to my room.

So, when I opened my bedroom door on the way out, it was such a treat to see a clean hallway.

In taking stock of various things I have purchased for organization purposes, these baskets are the best investment.

I don’t think I am alone in having an “area” or two that just irks me when it is not spotlessly clean.

Actually, I know I am not alone since I have passed this tip along to three other mothers in the past week alone!

Although my kids are supposed to clean their things out of the hallway, I can’t always run around after them to make sure they’ve done it.

In all honesty, I’ve got kids who go to bed at varying times, and the evening is my busiest time all day. So, I will admit that I just don’t always get up there to check the hallway after each kid goes to bed.

But, I still like having a clean hallway.

Having a place to put stray things they’ve left behind in my upstairs hallway is simply amazing.

toy organization

Another messy area – the living room

I also have one of these baskets in my living room, and the concept is the same. I know for most people, the living room is the most common family gathering place aside from the kitchen.

If you have unexpected or last minute guests, you will also want to have a clean living room.

This is exactly why having one of these baskets in your living room could really help you have a clean home even when life is busy.

Maybe you’ve got a friend next door who often comes by for a quick chat.

You might have neighborhood kids who come over to watch a movie with your kids.

Or, you could have planned guests on their way and have just run out of time for all those finishing touches.

Since so much of my life is unplanned or doesn’t go according to plans these days, these baskets have been the best kept secret for keeping me sane.

Of course everything in the baskets does need to get put away correctly at some point. As long as this is something we do at the end of the night, it takes us no more than 10 minutes to get it all put away right.

Decide on the messy areas in your home

Think about the areas that bother you most or that guests will see and start with baskets in those areas.

These particular baskets are great because they look nice, which means I am not bothered to have them sitting in visible areas. The lid is another added feature that makes them tolerable in the midst of our living areas.

Quite frankly, there are times that you can’t get it all done. However, that doesn’t mean it can’t look like you did.

Your home will always look like you’ve spent all day cleaning for guests, and when you’re home you will feel at peace.

clean kitchen table

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5 Comments

  1. Hi–I just found your blog via your post on “Moneysaving Mom” today. That was a great post–just as this one is! Thanks so much.

    I’m gonna copy your idea, above, and would like to find a l-I-d-d-e-d basket like you have…may I ask where you found them, please? Thank you for your time. 🙂

    1. Hi Kimberly! Thanks so much for reading and for your kind words! I found them at Kmart—pretty reasonably priced I thought.

      These are them, http://www.kmart.com/nylon-strap/p-005W003821406000P Doesn’t look like it is linking, at least at this point. If not, just copy and paste starting with the” http” into the bar up there and it should take you right to them. I, too, loved the lidded feature!

      Thanks again!

      1. Hi Kimberly! Thanks so much for reading and for your kind words! I found them at Kmart—pretty reasonably priced I thought.

        These are them, http://www.kmart.com/nylon-strap/p-005W003821406000P Doesn’t look like it is linking, at least at this point. If not, just copy and paste starting with the” http” into the bar up there and it should take you right to them. I, too, loved the lidded feature!

        Thanks again!

  2. Oohhh I love this! I really like the kid idea too. Your storyline is basically a clone to mine. I really like the idea for the kids to put others items on their beds. They really do end up in the hallway all the time… Or just left in their floor till I see it! Great ideas 🙂

    1. It does work out really nice to have them put them on the beds rather than just throw everything in a heap on their floor!

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