I have a very busy house. Two teens in full-time residence, three teens in part-time residence, five toddlers here during working hours. And one very patient husband. (There are still more offspring, as it happens. They're just old enough to live elsewhere.)
It's also a very small house, particularly for the number of people. Oh, and an old house, so that not every bedroom has a closet, and there is really no front hall to speak of, and certainly no front hall closet. I think I have now established my clutter and cleaning challenges, no?
Which is why I think I have some credibility when I say that, if you are looking for help in creating a clean and clutter-free home, my friend the Flylady
is a terrific resource. She provides a system for cleaning, a system that starts very simply (shine your sink!), and then moves up through a month's worth of wee little baby steps
, gentle, gradual steps, steps that even a woman with twelve people in her house a lot of the time can manage.
Not only that, she offers a virtual support group. You can sign up for daily email tips, notices, directions, and letters of encouragement. If keeping an orderly household seems about as likely to you as scaling Everest, you will love Flylady. She doesn't nag, she encourages. She doesn't criticize, she tells you to give up on the perfectionism. She doesn't run a white-gloved finger over your mantelpiece -- but she will sell you a feather duster
Thanks to her, my small, overcrowded home is always ready to receive guests. Well, guests who don't wear white gloves, at any rate.