Bloomington / Normal, IL

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Spring Cleaning Without Spring Cleaning!


By Karen Tucker


I have a confession to make—I like cleaning! And I love arranging my spice cabinet in alphabetical order, putting labels on every bin of toys, and color-coding my closet. With spring just around the corner, I actually get excited about the prospect of spring cleaning, BUT…I still don’t want to take a vacation day or spend my weekend vacuuming behind the fridge, washing windows, or cleaning baseboards on my hands and knees.

Whatever your feelings are about cleaning, the reality is that it has to be done. Besides the fact that no one wants to live in a pigsty, a certain level of cleaning is imperative for maintaining the value of your home. For example, if bathrooms aren’t cleaned on a regular basis, mold and mildew can grow to the point where it becomes impossible to remove. If carpets aren’t vacuumed regularly, the dust and dirt (even if you can’t see it) will become embedded and shorten the lifespan of the carpet.

Thankfully, I’ve figured out the trick to spring cleaning, without spring cleaning:  It’s throwing out the notion that deep cleaning the entire house from top to bottom needs to be done all at once so that you reach this moment of perfection when your entire house is immaculately clean. Even if you accomplished such a task, you’d be too exhausted to enjoy it! Instead, the secret is in making lists—or a spreadsheet if that’s more your style. Take a tip from the pros and make a list of every room and cleaning task that needs to be done. Then decide how often each task needs to be done—daily, weekly, monthly, and seasonally. Break the monthly and seasonal tasks into manageable 30-minute chunks and figure out where you can fit them into your weekly routine.

Professional cleaning services use a comprehensive list to make sure that certain rooms are deep-cleaned on a rotating basis. So everyday dusting and vacuuming is done each time they clean, but maybe every 6th time, they would also clean the ceiling fans and vacuum under the sofa cushions.


Here’s a few tips on how to never spring clean again.

  • You can’t clean clutter. You’d be amazed at how much easier it is to clean when there isn’t so much stuff to clean around.
  • Ask for help. If family members are old enough to clean, put them to work. If the task seems overwhelming, do yourself a favor and hire a service.
  • When making your list, determine which areas of the home are most important—usually bathrooms, kitchen, and family room—and maybe decide that some tasks can be eliminated from the list altogether. I rarely make the bed and we usually get dressed in the morning by digging through the basket of clean laundry.


When you do routine cleaning on a regular basis, then tackling the once or twice-a-year jobs is easy! Dare I say even invigorating?