How to make short work of chores

Chores are part and parcel of family life, and it’s easy to get bogged down with them.  But, chores don’t have to rule your life.  With some foreword planning and organisation, as well as establishing a routine, it’s possible to get through the daily chores without really noticing them, and certainly without them building up beyond your control.
Get into a routine – this is key!  Get into the habit of washing the floor after breakfast every morning, or putting a load of washing on every night and hanging it out every morning.
Ask yourself; does it really need to be ironed? – many of us have fallen into the trap of believing that if we don’t iron every single item of clothing, bedding etc, that we’re letting down the domestic goddess in us.  The reality is though, that underwear and even socks (yes, some people do iron these!) really won’t affect appearances if they have the odd crease in them.   Similarly, with bedding, you might like to iron the duvet cover but don’t bother with the fitted sheet. After all, no-one but yourself sees it and it creases as soon as you lie on it anyway.  You might also find that if you give your washing a good shake before hanging it out on the line, most creases will fall away themselves.  Better still, you can buy crease-free or non-iron clothes.

short work of chores

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Online groceries – if you find the very idea of going to the supermarket, a chore in itself, then try shopping online and use a savings pack if possible.  With automatic reminders of previous items bought, you won’t have to trawl the isles for your favourite ingredients.  Instead, you can sit at home with a cup of tea!
Be dust savvy – Clean a room from top to bottom, not the bottom up.  This way, any airborne dust or cobwebs will settle at the lower levels, ready for you to clean when you get down there.  You can even minimise airborne dust in the first place by using a damp rag instead of a feather duster.  And, make sure you do the dusting before the vacuuming.  Dusting afterwards makes it highly likely that you’ll end up vacuuming twice!
Use a bucket or basket to carry your cleaning supplies with you as you go – it takes time to stop what you’re doing and go to-and-fro to find the right cleaning agent, polish, etc.  If you keep it all to hand, you’ll whiz through it quicker.
Enrol the help of the kids – ask them to put their dirty washing directly into the washing machine (although you might have to do a bit of colour sorting!) throughout the day.  If you do use a laundry basket, encourage everyone to use it by keeping it in a central place – the bathroom, laundry room or your bedroom perhaps, so they have no excuses for leaving dirty clothes all over the place. Similarly, are your children old enough to help with the washing up?  If they are, enrol them in the task and even if they aren’t, younger children can be particularly good at putting dishes away.

Rebecca writes for  – the UK’s first website dedicated solely to saving, managing and making money for families. The website brings together all the best ways to save money with weekly supermarket price checks, deals and voucher codes; manage money with tools like budget planners and a pre-paid MasterCard; and make money with useful guides, eBooks and eCourses.

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