Keeping a Clean House When You Have Young Kids at Home

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Anyone else struggle at times with keeping a clean house?

It’s not that I don’t know HOW to keep it a clean house that’s the problem. The problem lies in my very talented and very curious toddler. She’s only two, but she was climbing the fridge, upper cuphoards, and microwaving her own food at 18 months old (all in the 5 minutes it took for me to get her newborn sister to finally latch on and nurse).

Things can get kind of crazy at my house. Crazy as in apple juice-on-the-floor crazy. Crazy as in Nail-polish on the carpet crazy. And crazy as in I don’t dare look away for 2 seconds crazy. So it’s not that I CAN’T clean…it’s that anytime I get in the mood I have to ask myself, “Is it worth it?” and “Will I end my cleaning spree with a greater mess?” What takes a normal person 10 minutes to accomplish, takes a mother with young kids 10 x’s that same amount, and sometimes you digress before you progress.

Which is when the inspiration came the other day. And if you are sitting here going, “I can’t believe it took you this long to figure out,” then I crown you Queen Brilliant and salute you with high honors!

And since I’m feeling brief tonight, I’m just going to give it to you straight:

Keeping a Clean House When You Have Young Kids at Home

Haha, I LOVE THIS! keeping a clean house with young kids at home.

Keeping a clean house when you have young kids at home, or “Keeping a Clean House for Dummies (me)” has 3 Simple Steps:

  1. 1. Look at the clutter that has begun to form in all rooms and say to yourself, “I wish it would just all go AWAY!”
  2. 2. You are the fairy to your own wish. Grab a very large laundry basket, and quickly *prance through each room grabbing all excess junk (or anything that is out of place) and put it in the basket. If your day seems rather dull, add a timer and music.
  3. 3.  Take your heaping basket and hide it in the basement or a faraway closet. Go back upstairs, hug your children, and delight in your tidy home.
  4. 4. Okay, I lied…there are actually 4 steps: When your husband comes home (or your kids go to bed), delight in the silent alone time and take 10 minutes and put it all away

Repeat as Necessary.

*Step two asks that you prance through the house. Bonus points if you can do it like this woman: Prancercise at its’ finest (You MUST watch if you don’t know what I’m talking about. Very worth your time).

**I realize that it’s very important to teach your kids to work, and picking up their stuff for them will not accomplish that; but in my case…I have a 2-year old and an 8-month old with limited abilities in the chore department.

***Keep in mind when I say “TIDY HOUSE” I am not talking about toys. I store toys in bins and let my kids pull them out one at a time and strew them around at their heart’s content. Toys don’t bother me. It means there is LIFE in the house. When I talk about Tidy, I’m talking about household clutter: mail on the counter, shoes, that craft project from last week that I never finished, etc.

When life gets busy, clutter starts to occur, and that my friends, is when the basket becomes my best friend. I am able to get the mess out of my sight, lift my spirits, but still put it all back into it’s proper place at a time that is most efficient.

Do you have any tips for Keeping a Clean House when you have young kids at home???

On a side note, since I was all about creating household solutions this week, this is how I remember if I have “special care” items in the laundry:

clean house tricks


I’m such a goober and can never remember to keep certain items out of the dryer (and sometimes my darling husband switches a load for me without knowing), so this has been the perfect solution this week!



All sorts of magic is happening this week. :)


Digiprove sealCopyright protected by Digiprove © 2014 Kristina Manscill
Tina M
I'm six-foot tall mother of two and I'm enjoying the view! I use blogging as my creative outlet, swimming as my physical outlet, and the rest of my life revolves around my husband and girls (18 months apart). I enjoy warm summer rain, eating peanut butter by the spoonful, having dance parties with my husband and kids and I avoid folding laundry at all cost
Tina M
Tina M

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  1. says

    These are great ideas Kristina and I will definitely look to this again and again once our little one comes and our house is sure to be a mess (considering I hate cleaning now anyway! and am the WORST with clutter) Ps. Love your sense of humor. Can’t wait to prance around the house with my little guy on my hip AND great idea to write on the lid of the washer. Why haven’t I thought of that?!

  2. says

    I was pretty skeptical when I read the title. I’ve been there, and there IS NO WAY to keep your house tidy with little ones at home. But I take it back. I think this would really work. :)

  3. Kathy Heisleman says

    What a great idea for the dryer! I will definitely use this even though my children are mothers and presenting me with babies and toddlers as grandchildren! (Just a BTW–the expression at the end of your post is French and means “Ta Da!” but it is spelled Voila! Just so you don’t get people rudely correcting you….I hope I was polite enough. :)

    • says

      Kathy! Lol. Your comment made me laugh. Thank you! I actually knew that, but with as often as I am writing..I sometimes have really stupid moments. I’m still laughing that I wrote it out that way 😉

  4. says

    Been doing this for years and it is a lifesaver! Can’t remember where I learned it. The timer idea works great when it’s late, and I’m too tired to clean but I know I don’t want to wake up to clutter. Just set the timer. I’m always amazed with how much I can clean in 15 minutes, then VOILA! (Lol) happy mom in the morning!

  5. April says

    Glad I’m not the only one who struggles with a non-tidy house! My three-year old can make a room looked, uh, “lived in” in about five seconds flat. Love the washing machine notes as well – I hadn’t thought of that, but I do use a dry erase marker on my refrigerator for shopping lists!

  6. says

    Love love love this- it’s exactly what I did when my babies were newborn ,1, & barely 2. (Yes I’m crazy lol. Three babies in 24 months) now there 3, 4, & 5 and they like following me thru the house from room to room. We usually sing silly songs or do a conga line.
    Also, wanted to say YOU ARE BRILLIANT with the dry erase marker idea. Totally stealing it! Thanks!!!

  7. says

    Love the dryer idea! I’m a G-Ma and watch my 13 month old grandson full time, I can’t seem to get anything done and I did this 25 years ago with 2 kids 2 years apart. Can’t even remember how I survived!

  8. Trisha says

    Love the dryer idea! Will have to try that. My washer has a glass top, but I will figure out a way to make it work. :)

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