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  #1  
Old 07-23-2012, 02:05 PM
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Default How Do You Keep Your House Clean?

The paranoia I have about parents thinking I am a slob is killing me. I am a neat freak by nature and daycare clean is 10x more clean than my normal deep clean and it has to be maintained at all times in case a parent comes by early etc. I feel a constant looming of, "what if they come by and see the peanut butter thrown on the ground" or "my house is a mess and I am trying to clean it...what if they come by and see me cleaning while the kids are trashing my living room?!"

I don't know how y'all do it. I feel incredible pressure to keep my house clean and I am embarrassed when normal kid mess is all over my house and parents come by the pick up. Sort of like they are judging my ability to take care of kids by the mess that my house is.

And I am not talking filthy floors, stuff splattered on cabinets or dust an inch thick. I'm not talking hoarders filth and my house is relatively clutter free, orderly and most things have a space. I'm mostly talking about kids strewing stuff all over my house, crumbs on the floor from lunch (that I sweep but can't vacuum til kids leave for the day) and just general disarray from playing with kids and not picking up after them 3-4 times a day.
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Old 07-23-2012, 02:08 PM
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I know what you mean! Then they just look at you like "what" when you ask them to help you clean up (the kids). It kills me when I have parents that have the day off, drop kids off and then say "I'm going home to clean the house!"

It just is part of the territory. What kills me is doing all the cooking, cleaning, teaching, etc. and then the state wonders why home childcares would like a break once in awhile. We do it all without any help like a center.
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Old 07-23-2012, 02:10 PM
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If the parents see that stuff and can't understand that sometimes it won't be spic and span, well, ya know, they have unreal expectations. Their houses are probably messier at the cleanest than yours is at it's messiest and they have a fraction of the kids for a fraction of the time.

RELAX.

Clean up before lunch (make them help!), tidy some more during nap, and clean up before everyone goes home (make them help!) with your final clean after they leave. That should be plenty...and anyone who says otherwise is crazy.
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Old 07-23-2012, 02:27 PM
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If it helps, I have had daycare parents tell me they don't mind if the house is a bit cluttered because they see it as a sign of me doing things with the kids and not cleaning all day while the children are here....
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Old 07-23-2012, 02:27 PM
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do you have a separate space for your daycare or is it all in one space that is shared by your family?
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Old 07-23-2012, 02:31 PM
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If it helps, I have had daycare parents tell me they don't mind if the house is a bit cluttered because they see it as a sign of me doing things with the kids and not cleaning all day while the children are here....
Reminds me of a time when a interviewer asked me if I cleaned house during the day. Seemed like a loaded question-they either wanted to make sure I was or didnt want me to. Ended up they didn't want me to but I do clean during the day within reason.
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Old 07-23-2012, 02:35 PM
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I agree, it is SOOO hard to keep the house clean while watching all the kids when you work ALONE. My house also is pretty clean, I vacuum multiple times a day, wipe everything down, mop often, pick up toys all day long, run dishwasher twice a day, everything has a home, etc.

But still, sometimes the house just EXPLODES. I make sure to always lock the door if I'm not ready to be "surprised" by a parent walking in. But even then, sometimes a parent asks to use my bathroom and it's not really presentable, and parents put their baby food in my fridge so that's another thing I want to always look nice inside, and then they might need to change a random diaper at drop off so the nap/diaper room, on and on, ah!

It literally does make me crazy but I've just had to let it go recently and if parents think it's too messy/dirty then they're too high maintenance for me. I'm doing the absolute best I can while working ALONE. I THINK most parents understand that and all seem to say, "I don't know how you do it!"

Sometimes I even intentionally LET the toys be left all over the floor at pick up just so they know the toys do get used. Sometimes I get paranoid that the house is so clean maybe they think I don't let the kids actually play with toys and it's just there as a front! LOL The things we get paranoid about! :P
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Old 07-23-2012, 02:36 PM
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I clean during the day alot, I just have to!
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Old 07-23-2012, 02:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Country Kids View Post
Reminds me of a time when a interviewer asked me if I cleaned house during the day. Seemed like a loaded question-they either wanted to make sure I was or didnt want me to. Ended up they didn't want me to but I do clean during the day within reason.
That is a loaded question! I do too, somewhat.
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Old 07-23-2012, 03:25 PM
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I try to clean as I go during the day. I vacuum during breakfast when they are off the floor. Wipe down you.ters when I can. Toss toys that need to be sanitized into the sink so I can get to them later.

On Friday I had a dad come by and drop something off for his daughter in the middle of the day and he asked to use the bathroom. I said yes of course but excuse the mess as it was Friday and I deep clean on the weekends and maintain throughout the week. He said oh its no big deal at all!! The whole time i was frwaking out though.

I usually have mostly free play all day for DS as he is currently the oldest but I clean up as he goes from when area to another and takes toys out. He gets overwhelmed otherwise and so do I. DH never understands why I am always picking up if he is just going to make a mess again.

One thing I can never fully finish is laundry!! I cant fold if he is up so I wait til bedtime and then I'm too tired. It's a never ending battle. I'm determined to get it all folded today
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Old 07-23-2012, 03:27 PM
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I clean when I feel like cleaning. On Sunday evenings I tidy enough to be presentable but Mondays are usually my cleaning days. The kids are tired from their busy weekend and are happy to simply play. That gives me a chance to get housework done. I live in my house so it's never pristine because, well, life goes on in here. My clients never seem to notice and if they do, it's to tell me their houses look worse.

Heck, I pulled every toy & bin out today to rotate toys and reorganize my storage system. I have rubbermaid bins and boxes stacked in my kitchen so deep I couldn't use the kitchen for lunch or snacks, lol. My clients just laughed and the house will be back to normal by tomorrow morning.
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  #12  
Old 07-23-2012, 04:25 PM
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First I just have to say I love, love this forum! I have never felt so completely "at home"...its wonderful to have a group of people to chat with who actually understand what I go through every day! Some of you have described EXACTLY how I feel about my house being clean. My usual routine is to have everything clean, organized & ready to go for Monday morning before I go to bed Sunday night.

*I'm sorry, I don't know why that posted before I was finished?? LOL

Last edited by Daycarelady1979; 07-23-2012 at 04:53 PM. Reason: posted twice
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  #13  
Old 07-23-2012, 04:43 PM
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I feel the same way as daycarelady about this forum. It's very real!



I deep clean on Sundays (sanitize all toys, clean out cubbies and prep for the following week.etc) Monday -Friday I tidy up after breakfast, before lunch and after pick up. I also quick spray down toys shelves and tables, clean the bathroom, vacuum and mop. If parents pick up early, they see us in our regular day. Atleast they know that their child us having fun! I had a parent stop by at 10 this morning unannounced and tell me that my house was still cleaner then hers. Lol!
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Old 07-23-2012, 04:49 PM
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First I just have to say I love, love this forum! I have never felt so completely "at home"...its wonderful to have a group of people to chat with who actually understand what I go through every day! Some of you have described EXACTLY how I feel about my house being clean. I don't think many other people have to think about a clean home the way we childcare providers do...they probably don't stress if their fridge isn't clean or if their bathroom is a bit messy or if the front yard didn't get mowed or if there's dog poo in the back yard, the list goes on & on! Like right now, I have a huge pile of boxes & stuff piled up (somewhat neatly) in my back room because I'm preparing for a yard sale in 2 weeks. I don't have anywhere else to put it & I'm soooo nervous about what people may think about my pile of "junk"...lol

My usual routine is to have everything clean, organized & ready to go for Monday morning before I go to bed Sunday night. That includes grocery shopping, laundry, dishes, trash, etc. Monday morning I start fresh. I have the kids help me clean up a little in between each transition, for example they have to do a quick clean up of whatever toys are out before we go outside to play. At the end of the day I try to make sure most of the daycare stuff is put away, with the kids' help, before they leave. Then every night before I go to bed I do another quick clean of whatever needs it, loading the dishwasher, sweeping the floors, etc. I try to get up 30 mins early in the morning to take care of any last minute things. I make sure my front porch & front door are clean. Also I think it's really important to have a couple minutes to myself each morning before I begin my job. I drink my coffee, balance my checkbook, watch the news, check my facebook...just whatever I can for MYSELF before the chaos begins

It seems like a lot of cleaning, but really it's not too bad. It's just a quick clean at night & a quick clean in the morning & a good clean on Sundays. During daycare hours, have the kids help you!! There's nothing wrong with teaching them a little responsibility

Also my older son & my husband help with some things too...they know if mom is going to work from home, we all have to be in this together. I don't ask them to help with my actual daycare stuff, but they do help with household things. If they want me to have a good job, they know we have to have a nice home
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Old 07-23-2012, 05:20 PM
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what??? we are supposed to have a clean house????

My house is relatively clean but I don't fret if there are some toys on the floor or some dishes in the sink when a parent walks in. I do basic cleaning (sweep, vacuum, dust, laundry) whenever I get a chance during the days and wipe down bathrooms every night, etc.

Of course for an interview I try to clean a little more but again, I want them to know I spend my days with their kids, not scrubbing my kitchen floor.
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Old 07-23-2012, 06:20 PM
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See, I worry that my parents will be judging me thinking that my house looks too clean. I clean the "exposed" area immediately after each meal/snack/messy activity. Luckfully, my house is very open so I can keep an eye on the kids while I'm cleaning the disaster area. I do deep cleanings and mopping on the weekend or during nap time.
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Old 07-23-2012, 07:11 PM
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I pick up during the day and do household cleaning as time permits, like when kids are napping. Otherwise all cleaning done weekends/evenings.

I would love to go to my dcf houses to see how clean their places are. I bet if I did I would never think about how clean my place is when their kids are here .


I don't stress about it. I am a tidy individual but life happens in this house and if parents don't like it they are the wrong parents for this place .
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Old 07-23-2012, 09:32 PM
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If parents are going to judge me because my house is a bit messy, then this is not the place for them. Unfortunatley i am not a neat freak by nature (i wish i was, and so does my husband) I have the daycare downstairs and I live upstairs, i try to keep both as clean as I can, but one person with two young kids of her own, come on, lets be realistic. I try to keep the daycare part as clean as I can becuase parents arent usually upstairs unless they drop off early...and my husband just today complains how i put my daycare first I wanted to throw a pie in his face ugh i think this turned into a vent haha anyways...bottom line....dont stress it! do what you can do in the time you have, but were not robots either.
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Old 07-23-2012, 10:31 PM
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Someone posted on Facebook not too long ago "Cleaning with children in the house is like brushing your teeth while you're eating a box of oreos"

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Old 07-24-2012, 04:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pootmcgoot View Post
The paranoia I have about parents thinking I am a slob is killing me. I am a neat freak by nature and daycare clean is 10x more clean than my normal deep clean and it has to be maintained at all times in case a parent comes by early etc. I feel a constant looming of, "what if they come by and see the peanut butter thrown on the ground" or "my house is a mess and I am trying to clean it...what if they come by and see me cleaning while the kids are trashing my living room?!"

I don't know how y'all do it. I feel incredible pressure to keep my house clean and I am embarrassed when normal kid mess is all over my house and parents come by the pick up. Sort of like they are judging my ability to take care of kids by the mess that my house is.

And I am not talking filthy floors, stuff splattered on cabinets or dust an inch thick. I'm not talking hoarders filth and my house is relatively clutter free, orderly and most things have a space. I'm mostly talking about kids strewing stuff all over my house, crumbs on the floor from lunch (that I sweep but can't vacuum til kids leave for the day) and just general disarray from playing with kids and not picking up after them 3-4 times a day.
Do I really want to admit this? I don't! It's probably the main area that I need to work on! We have such long days as it is! I clean the kitchen after meals and the kids pick up their messes throughout the day....but they are all 3-5 years old. I tend to have a messy desk and if you look too close...I have dust. I need a little OCD!
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Old 07-24-2012, 04:49 AM
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I clean everyday, but more the basic stuff. Like yesterday at nap time, I was talking to my back up provider on the phone and was wiping down the kitchen cabinets at the same time. I will say that my house is way cleaner than most families. but nothing makes me more mad when dcf says "I'm going home to clean" this makes me mad because I have to do my deep cleaning on the weekend, I don't get to take a day off and clean my house. heck I'm doing some major reno in the daycare room and all the kids are still here.

Yesterday we went to dinner at my parents house (I never go anymore because of favortism and my kids can't stand it) my mother has been going over to my sisters house to clean her brand new house, they have no children. so when I said to her, why doesn't she come and give me a hand because I have drywall dust (remember I'm fixing the daycare room) she has the never to say "well you have nothing to do at home so you can clean your own house" I was so mad. hello, I guess watching 9 kids is nothing. Comments like this is the reason I don't go over.
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Old 07-24-2012, 01:33 PM
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I always wipe down countertops after meals and snacks, and clean the table. I vacuum the eating area after lunch, and have the kids pick up all of their toys after each activity. My house is generally clean and tidy, but I do drive myself a little nuts with it.

But really, there is no way to have your house spick and span 100% of the time without neglecting the kids, unless you have an easy group who can play nicely together every day within ear shot while you tidy your house. My group needs constant supervision. While I do have an open floor plan, which allows me to get things done while watching the kids free-play, I still have to constantly referee them.

Theres still pretzel crumbs on my table from pm snack lol...
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Old 04-09-2018, 07:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alicesaf View Post
I have no idea how my friend cleans her two-floored house by herself. I use help sometimes, like once a month i call cleaning service and they just scrub my house to shine.
Two vacuum cleaners and wonder-mop is just not enough for me to stuff all this cleaning in one day.

How do you manage to prioritize and separate house cleaning? Can you do that in one day?
Timing.

I keep all my necessities within reach all day (broom/dust pan, rag mop, spray cleaner). When we finish a meal, the kids are responsible for cleaning up their assigned task (one has cups, one has plates, one has silverware, etc). While they do that, I sweep up. Then we wash up and go directly to outdoor time. I put the dishes away while they dress in their outdoor gear. I mop after they come in- while they take off their gear and put it away.

I clean the rest of my house during nap. I also clean the kitchen during afternoon snack time.

All my kids MUST participate in clean up time at 4:00. If they refuse, they will not have their choice of helper duties the next day and may lose privileges for not helping the group.
At 4:00, we have dance time or a game that's minimal work for me to put away.
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Old 04-09-2018, 09:54 AM
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I feel the same way as daycarelady about this forum. It's very real!



I deep clean on Sundays (sanitize all toys, clean out cubbies and prep for the following week.etc) Monday -Friday I tidy up after breakfast, before lunch and after pick up. I also quick spray down toys shelves and tables, clean the bathroom, vacuum and mop. If parents pick up early, they see us in our regular day. Atleast they know that their child us having fun! I had a parent stop by at 10 this morning unannounced and tell me that my house was still cleaner then hers. Lol!

Still the same!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Snowmom View Post
Timing.

I keep all my necessities within reach all day (broom/dust pan, rag mop, spray cleaner). When we finish a meal, the kids are responsible for cleaning up their assigned task (one has cups, one has plates, one has silverware, etc). While they do that, I sweep up. Then we wash up and go directly to outdoor time. I put the dishes away while they dress in their outdoor gear. I mop after they come in- while they take off their gear and put it away.

I clean the rest of my house during nap. I also clean the kitchen during afternoon snack time.

All my kids MUST participate in clean up time at 4:00. If they refuse, they will not have their choice of helper duties the next day and may lose privileges for not helping the group.
At 4:00, we have dance time or a game that's minimal work for me to put away.
YEP!

I don't feel ashamed at running the vacuum during the day, or folding DC laundry during rest time.

I think that once it's clean, it's easier to just maintain.
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Old 04-09-2018, 10:23 AM
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I too really struggle with this.... some items that help me:
  • All dcks bring their own lunch so no lunch dishes to clean other than spoons/cups.
  • AM Snack is homemade and cooked but cleaned up during the day or during nap time PM Snack is quick and premade in batches required no clean up other than the mess at the table.
  • I aim to teach the dcks to clean up after they are done in an area but we clean the entire space as a group before outside time and before goodbye time
  • Lastly I dismiss from outside during ia reading (not playtime) this benefits in three ways 1) dcks know this cue and parents know their child will notice if they are last so they feel pressure to show up on time 2) if the space is clean the dcks don't mess it up again while waiting on the dcps and 3) so if it is a complete mess inside at the end of day parents do not see.

I have my place professionally cleaned one a month but am hoping to increase that to 2X a month and eventually weekly.

Adding that I also tidy up the night before..... right before I go to bed since my dd is not Miss Neat which I am working on...
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Old 04-09-2018, 12:20 PM
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I use the Motivated Moms chore planner and minimalism.
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Old 04-09-2018, 12:58 PM
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Im right there with you! it would literally give me almost like anxiety problems, thinking about what if a parent wants to walk this far and sees the dishes or the crumbs or the clutter or if licensing or food program came by! so the door bell would just basically send me into panic
So here are some MAJOR things that here I'm my little time out from home daycare and transitioning/moving to our bigger house has made me think about.
1. I've packed up all the stuff i don't need every day and stuck it in the garage, like EVERYTHING and then i did it again and again till I'm living on the minimum and my house looks like a model home so i can do showings and now i don't even remember what in the garage! i recommend this. I'm thinking of having my mom take it all and having a garage sale for me so i don't get tempted to bring it all back in.
2. a morning routine and mid day routine and after noon routine helped a lot with daycare. morning like make beds start a load of laundry and empty dishes and fill with breakfast ones or whatever. mid day before lunch kids tidy for you! joys of daycare while you sweep, load dishwasher and wipe counters. nap time fold that laundry and put away.
end of day fill dishwasher, make dinner take out all those nasty trashes. sweep if you need to and again KIDS TIDY. if i have even one kid over 3 i don't pick up toys. yay me happy face
3. this is a big one ROOMBA. love my robot vacuum i don't know all the types i don't think it matters but i don't sweep or vacuum as much. id run my roomba in the daycare room or just turn her on and let her go where she wants and at the end of the week, one time a week id vacuum the daycare area real good cuz roomba does it everyday for me.
and i also love me rubbermaid reveal spray mop. or just use a swiffer with microfiber clothes pinched in a spray bottle with 99 percent water 1 percent dish soap and spray where you wanna mop and clean your floors in like 5 mins or less when you need to.
4. i take a cloth around my house now and time myself and spot clean, finger prints, dirty counters, spots on mirrors, dirty door knobs, sinks and faucets. toilet seats i do with paper towels. you can also time yourself and declutter an area each day or time yourself and go around your house and pick up the clutter in a hamper and put it all away the timer helps me or i just won't do it. idk why
routines routines routines though as well id say or my house can get bad even without the clutter.
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Old 04-09-2018, 07:31 PM
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I tell my parents when I interview with them that my house will not look like this when you are picking up your child for the most part. I interview in the evenings, so the house is tidy. I tell them for the most part, I am not cleaning my house, I'm spending time with the kids, so it probably will look like a tornado hit it lol.

I do try to clean up the kitchen though during last snack of the day. They are at the table and I'm wiping down kitchen counters, loading dishwasher etc. It's all in the same room.

My concern is how the state is changing it's audits. They used to do a sampling of people when their license got renewed, but now they are doing surprise audits once a year. I'm afraid what they will think if they come in sometimes when we have stuff spread from 1 part of the house to the other. I hope they don't expect a tidy house. Anyhone have experience with that?
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Old 04-10-2018, 03:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovemykidstoo View Post
I tell my parents when I interview with them that my house will not look like this when you are picking up your child for the most part. I interview in the evenings, so the house is tidy. I tell them for the most part, I am not cleaning my house, I'm spending time with the kids, so it probably will look like a tornado hit it lol.

I do try to clean up the kitchen though during last snack of the day. They are at the table and I'm wiping down kitchen counters, loading dishwasher etc. It's all in the same room.

My concern is how the state is changing it's audits. They used to do a sampling of people when their license got renewed, but now they are doing surprise audits once a year. I'm afraid what they will think if they come in sometimes when we have stuff spread from 1 part of the house to the other. I hope they don't expect a tidy house. Anyhone have experience with that?
My licensor did a pop in on Valentine's Day. I am usually one who picks up as we go, but I hadn't felt great that day, I only had 3 kiddos and one was a almost 4 yo boy who wanted to do games and I was the only one who was able to do them (the other kids were just under 2) and when she came in the afternoon it was as if a tornado had hit. I definitely felt some judgement, but like whatever.
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Old 04-10-2018, 05:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Play Care View Post
My licensor did a pop in on Valentine's Day. I am usually one who picks up as we go, but I hadn't felt great that day, I only had 3 kiddos and one was a almost 4 yo boy who wanted to do games and I was the only one who was able to do them (the other kids were just under 2) and when she came in the afternoon it was as if a tornado had hit. I definitely felt some judgement, but like whatever.

You did feel judged? See that's what I'm worried about. I mean, I do not do dishes until after the kids leave, alot of the picking up the kids will do as far as toys right before they leave, but during the day they're everywhere. I may have my paperwork sitting on the couch. My daughter may have a school book somewhere. I mean if they want to bop in and do surprise visits, that's fine, but they have to understand that we have alot of kids and the idea isn't to have a spotless house it's to be interacting with the kids.
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  #31  
Old 04-10-2018, 05:09 AM
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MomBoss MomBoss is offline
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In the morning i make sure the carpet is vacuumed and the toys are picked up. In the afternoon idc what the parents see because ive had 6 kids here all day, the parents need to expect a mess.
The weekend is when i do deep cleaning.
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Old 04-10-2018, 11:28 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lovemykidstoo View Post
You did feel judged? See that's what I'm worried about. I mean, I do not do dishes until after the kids leave, alot of the picking up the kids will do as far as toys right before they leave, but during the day they're everywhere. I may have my paperwork sitting on the couch. My daughter may have a school book somewhere. I mean if they want to bop in and do surprise visits, that's fine, but they have to understand that we have alot of kids and the idea isn't to have a spotless house it's to be interacting with the kids.
Truly, it could have just been a me issue though.
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  #33  
Old 04-10-2018, 06:40 PM
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Anyone use those old school sweepers? the ones that dont require electricity? My DCK love taking turns "vacuuming" there not so great at it, but they do ok!
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Old 04-10-2018, 07:29 PM
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ColorfulSunburst ColorfulSunburst is offline
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I teach kids to eat without making a mess and clean up after themselves. If I see a lot of toys on the floor I just stop all kids activities and ask them to clean up EVERYTHING. when it is done they start playing again. the kids know they MUST clean up before to take some other toy.
Yes, it takes time to teach them, but during the teaching time, we have almost no mess as I constantly encourage them to clean up. After some period of time, it just becomes to be a good habit.

yesterday I gave to kids pineapple. No one took it by fingers. They asked me for forks. They do not like to get their hands sticky. Every Friday they get pancakes with syrup. No sticky hands, no sticky furniture, no sticky walls. My kids know how to eat without making a mess. It saves me a lot of time.
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