There’s something about spring that always makes me want to start fresh and part of that involves decluttering and deep cleaning my house. With a 10 month old baby in the house, spring cleaning is complicated for us a bit this year, but not impossible.
Here are my top tips for spring cleaning when you have a baby:
Take advantage of nap time. Nap time is the easiest part of my day to get any bigger project done, especially if it requires a larger block of time to complete. Be careful though, that you don’t start more projects than you can complete before baby wakes up. The last thing you want is to pull everything out of your closet or junk drawer only to have it still be out when baby wakes up.
Use a play yard. We’ve given the Joovy Moon Room prime real estate in our family room because it gives the baby a safe place to play if we need to put her down for a few minutes. She has learned how to climb stairs and open drawers now so she can’t be trusted on her own for a minute but she enjoys spending a few minutes looking at her books by herself and it gives me time to do a few quick jobs. She’s especially happy to stay put if I’m working in the same room and she can keep an eye on me.
Use an infant carrier – Having two hands free is a must for most projects around the house. For this, your baby carrier or wrap is your best friend. I alternate between an Ergo carrier and a wrap depending on the task.
Let the baby make a mess. I realize that making messes may seem like it goes against everything spring cleaning stands for but sometimes a messy project is just what you need to keep baby busy. Give your baby a forgotten box of toys to explore or let her play with edible pudding in her high chair while you work.
Break jobs up into smaller parts. Large jobs are definitely overwhelming when you have a baby who constantly wants your attention. Rather than leaving them to never get done, break them up into smaller jobs. You may not be able to deep clean your kitchen before your baby needs you but you can deep clean 1 or 2 shelves in your fridge or sort through a junk drawer. Slow progress is always better than none at all.
Put older siblings to work. I’m always looking for ways to teach my kids responsibility. Lately, that often comes in the form of helping out with the baby. They may not be old enough to babysit when I’m out of the house, but my almost 10 year old is more than capable of keeping the baby entertained for 10-15 minutes while I deep clean a small area of my house.
Make it a family project. Who said spring cleaning had to be done by mom? For less detailed jobs, like cleaning the garage or sorting toys, I hold the baby and supervise the work. After all, everyone else lives in this house too and learning to clean up the mess is a valuable life lesson.
What are your tips for spring cleaning with a baby in the house?