# 1: Start with a cup of coffee or tea. Before I do anything else, I turn on the electric kettle to make a cuppa. Instant mood lifter! That laundry mountain doesn’t look quite as overwhelming as it did pre-caffeine!
#2: Love your cleaning products. I recently have found two revolutionary cleaning motivators.
I’ve never cared about cleaning products much (other than not wanting anything toxic) but when I discovered Grove Collaborative (formerly ePantry) all that changed.
Grove Collaborative sends all kinds of household products to your doorstep for a great price. I can finally afford the Mrs. Meyers lavender stuff that smells like heaven! I haven’t run out of baby wipes since I subscribed so…..win! AND it was all so pretty when it arrived that it merited a complete cabinet re-organization so I could see all my lovelies lined up in there. Definitely check them out. Great customer service. Great price. Don’t have to leave my house for unexpected we’re-out-of-dish-soap emergencies anymore!
UPDATE: Grove is offering my readers a FREE kit of Caldrea products THIS WEEK ONLY!
They’re giving away more than $30 worth of products for anyone who makes a new order ($20 or more) So here’s one way you could take advantage of the offer and set up your Grove basket:
For my readers who already use and love Grove, there’s something for you too. You’ll get the Grove Collaborative Be Good Dish Brush when you order using this link.
Want to get your Caldrea set and see for yourself why I love Grove? Here’s how it works:
- Sign up for Grove Collaborative here and you will receive the Caldrea offer for free!
- Answer 4 quick questions about your home that Grove Collaborative will then use to customize your products — this takes under 30 seconds!
- Once you’ve answered the questions, you can finalize your basket of products to suit your household needs by adding or removing items.
- To receive this offer, your order needs to be a minimum of $20. Choose the combination of products and scents you love and receive in your first box.
- You made it! Click Finish & Pay and place your order.
#3: Light a candle. I’m currently in love with the Grove Collaborative’s Maple Sugar scented soy candle. It smells AMAZING. As in, we had a playdate over here yesterday and whenever someone came in the door the first thing they said was “what IS THAT AMAZING SMELL?” Because wow. They’re out of stock at ePantry due to bad weather and shipping issues, (I chatted with the helpful live chat customer service rep because we used up the candle and I was a little bit desperate) but I was assured they will get some more in the near future. I don’t usually like scented candles, the maple sugar is an exception, and I tend to just get beeswax (I love Toadily Handmade Beeswax Candles for those). Light a candle. Suddenly housecleaning got all fancy and less horrible!
#4: Listen to something wonderful. I either pump up the jams (you can find some of my playlists here, here, here, here, and my Advent ones here and here) or I catch up on my favorite podcasts. Speaking of which, Fountains of Carrots has a new episode featuring recording artist Colleen Nixon and chatting about Advent music, balancing motherhood and creative pursuits, how beauty points us to Jesus, and moose. So if you’ve got dishes to do or laundry to fold (we all do, right?) head on over.
#5: Binge-watch a good show. So…I’m certainly not as EFFICIENT when I watch Netflix or Amazon Prime while laundering or cleaning. But it sure is more fun to fold clothes and do dishes while watching Miss Lane’s daily adventures in Lark Rise to Candleford.
What are your favorite ways to add a little fun to the housework? Let’s chat in the comments!
This post contains affiliate and referral links.
If I give my toddlers little things to do while I’m cleaning, it helps me to smile and be more cheerful during housework. Even if it’s something essentially useless like wiping the chair leg with a baby wipe, while they’re “working” alongside me I feel like I’m not taking care of the house all alone.
Another trick I love? Wearing an apron. Getting into your official housekeeper uniform helps mentally to get in the groove . Plus, it’s infinitely practical.
Yes! And a really SASSY apron, too–LOL! I have one that I bought while on a trip to Oregon with my girlfriend. We stopped to see a collection of art that celebrated female change makers (you know–“uppity” ones) and I had to have the apron with the big splash of purple letters with the name of the shop “BAD WOMAN” Gallery. It not only brings back fun memories, it also tickles my sense of irony–an empowering apron. The object lesson is lost on a lot of people but, to me, it’s the very essence of feminism: “I CHOOSE this work. It is difficult, vitally important–and I’m AMAZING at it. RESPECT the skills!” LOL!
You can also get a kit at JoAnn’s that has a fuzzy-side-of the-Velcro ‘billboard’ that you sew onto any apron, and a set of letters so that you can change the message to suit your mood–LOVE! Because some days, I feel kind and wise; and some days, it’s only fair to warn people… 😉
This popped up as I was about to dive into folding laundry…. and what do I have going : A Dr. Pepper (my coffee), candles burning, music going and considering switching to an episode of Gilmor Girls 😉
I haven’t let myself watch any of GG now that it’s on Netflix because even though I’ve seen them all before I’m afraid I’m be looking at a netflix binge of epic proportion 😉
I make my own cleaning products and they smell divine!!
mmmm! So good! I typically use white vinegar plus a little lavender essential oil for general daily use and it smells yummy. And I was making my own laundry detergent until I got lazy 😉
I’m dying over here! Check in point number 4. “Beauty points us to Jesus, and moose.” And moose! I haven’t listened to the podcast so maybe you do talk about moose, but I read it as a typo and got a kick out of beauty pointing me to moose. Happy advent!
That’s where that oxford comma between “Jesus” and “and” saves us from ridiculousness . We do talk about moose. But we don’t talk about how beauty points us to Jesus and moose. I love circumstances when punctuation matters, haha.
Not on topic for the post, but Haley, where did you get your shoes in the first picture? They are CUTE!
Adrie | A Little Wife's Happy Life says
No way- same question! (Great minds, Lindsey, great minds.)
Thanks, ladies! I ordered them used from Twice: https://liketwice.com/PiDUR
They’re Blowfish brand.
I have to start with a mental adjustment: cleaning my house doesn’t make me a martyr, it gives me an opportunity to bless my family! That goes a long way to helping me not hate it. And I agree with #5, watching tv and folding laundry just go together!
Absolutely! When washing dishes–or putting away LEFTOVERS!–we can think, “How blessed I am to be able to feed my family well.” Mending, or folding mountains of warm, fresh laundry means my home is full of active, happy people. 🙂
love that, ladies!
Adrie | A Little Wife's Happy Life says
Totally off topic- the shoes you’re wearing in the first picture- so cute! Where’d you get those!!?
I just got a chance to answer to the comment above, Adrie, but just in case you don’t see that one, here’s the 411 for those shoes 😉
I ordered them used from Twice: https://liketwice.com/PiDUR
They’re Blowfish brand.
Adrie | A Little Wife's Happy Life says
Thanks! (And I should definitely take a minute to read other comments… but I just got too excited about the shoes!) =)
Jenn @ Vita Carminis says
I am so on board with #4 and #5. I just listened to the latest Fountains of Carrots this morning while folding laundry and it was so nice. Seriously loving the podcast. It really is just like having a great conversation with other like-minded mamas.
Aw, thanks, Jenn!
I needed this post after day 4 of sick baby/sick mom/ bad weather/ nothing else to do BUT clean. So much harder to do house work when you can’t escape haha. Have you been to aslobcomesclean.com? There are lots of cleaning and decluttering tips for those of us that are less than neat freaks. I’m also definitly going to check out some of the shows suggested in the last fountains of carrots episode!
I’ve never read a slob comes clean, Nicola, but I’ll have to check it out! Thanks for the recommendation!
I’ve started listening to podcasts while doing dishes- listened to Fountains of Carrots yesterday. 🙂
Housework has been something of a hair-puller for me lately since my housemate moved out and I’m left with the mess and what feels like a monstrous job of reorganizing the apartment. Your happy, peppy list is just the motivation I need to get back at it. Thanks, Haley! 🙂
I’m so glad, Willow! <3
I must be the 1% of women that actually enjoys cleaning! I must say my swiffer wet jet mop has to be the best thing invented. A quick and easy way to mop the floors– well worth the price. I also wear gloves. It’s a must. Well, I can’t fool anyone though… as I look over this very minute to my (farmhouse) kitchen I see a mouse on the counter…. time to go clean some more! Thanks for the post Carrots!
I listened to your latest podcast whilst making dinner tonight, and it felt so much like being on a girl’s-lunch-out that I almost cried. So I think it’s having the effect you were hoping for, at least for me. (:
That makes my day, Erin!
#1 is a must for me!
#2 – I LOVE Norwex SO much that I am now a consultant. Let me tell you my favorite thing: the Basic package (I feel like this is not an ad, since your friend will reap the benefits), even tho I sell to…The Basic Package has the Enviro (seriously an all-purpose cloth: windows, counters, stains on carpets, crayon off walls, spot cleaning upholstery and SO MUCH MORE), and the Window cloth (use dry to shine things up). At my parties, I do races: Norwex vs. a typical window cleaner with paper towel. With a few swipes, Norwex takes BUTTER off of a mirror, add a streak free shine with the window cloth. The typical cleaner (won’t say the name here!) takes at least 4 applications to get anywhere near a “clean” look.
#3-5 – Yes. Yes. Yes.
Yes. I love my Norwex Enviro cloths and window cloth. My only issue is that our water is SUPER hard and occasionally they get water resistant and I have to do intense washes. But the same thing happens to all my other micro cloths. And my cloth diapers. It’s annoying. But they still do the trick!
I really, really dislike cleaning. Listening to music helps, though. I put on a Pandora station I set up with Michael Franti and assorted other upbeat stuff on it that’s usually my cleaning soundtrack. Sometimes I listen to chant and that helps.
I love having a clean house, though. I just wish I were better at getting it that way.
Aw I was so excited about the ePantry thing but they just mark everything up so high! Even with the $10 credit I don’t save much if anything. Target will ship most of that stuff for free to home for way cheaper. Walmart comes out a bit cheaper as well and I think they’d also ship for free if you subscribe to their savings program.
You have me interested in purchasing an electric kettle however.
Really? I feel like it’s way better than the prices I usually get at Target or Publix, but I haven’t tried the ordering online thing at Target. And they’re a super environmentally friendly co, which I’m a fan of. And I want all those candles forever.
Oh girl, ELECTRIC KETTLE. Life changer. Best thing ever.
Love these ideas! It also helps me to put an apron on (my parents gave me a super cute old-fashioned one with teacups on it 🙂 and dress up in Cinderella garb, complete with flowy skirt and head kerchief. My husband laughs but it gets me past my mental block!
Haha, love it, Yvonne!
I am so torn on this — I also, personally, much prefer to do housework (laundry, and the other jobs that lend themselves to this) with a show on. For a long time, I considered it a good excuse to watch “fluff” shows on Hulu that I couldn’t otherwise justify.
However, I’ve been really struck by the Waldorf education perspective on housework (I know Waldorf can be controversial, not trying to start anything, just, that is the source of this idea for me) that it is important for children to see us doing housework in an intentional, reverent way. Taking care of our homes is so important, and can almost be a way of meditation. So thoughtfully and calmly folding the laundry is *better* for my toddler to observe and take part in, than furiously trying to bang out 5 loads during a Netflix binge 🙂 So I feel sort of badly if I give into that now … but I still do when I’m really behind and need a boost, or if I can do it while the children are napping! Lighting a candle and using healthy, high quality cleaning supplies certainly lend themselves to this idea, too.
Sarah C. says
I totally agree with all of the above points although I am dubious about the Norwex cloth’s antibacterial cleaning property. I LOVE my steam cleaner. I haven’t used it for a while because we currently don’t have a kitchen floor (ugh) but I get into steam cleaning binges and I can’t wait until the new floor is DONE so I can have a kitchen! I’m trying to teach my 18 month child the joy of cleaning and she enjoys helping out with certain tasks! Even though it takes longer to clean with her, it makes me feel like I am being present to my child and getting stuff done that needs to be done around the house.
Erica Saint says
The Norwex cloths have silver in them. Silver having antibacterial properties is not a new thing. The Norwex body towels (the size of washcloth) have helped clear up my oldest son’s acne. I included them in my five favorites post yesterday. 🙂
AnneMarie Miller says
Many times, I actually enjoy the relaxation of housework. Sometimes, I’ll listen to free recordings of books on Librivox, but music is my most common go-to. Something fun and bouncy, or I’ll just listen to random things on my iTunes. I also usually try to pick an intention to offer up the housework for, which helps bring a greater purpose and motivation to my work 🙂
LOVE librivox. It’s just the best.
Stayed home sick today, but after a nap and green tea- I think I am going to get some cleaning done since the husband is working and the kid is at school. It is so much easier to clean on the rare occasion that you are the only one home.
Made some coffee, put on Advent music on Pandora, and I am going to get to it! I need a few lovely smelling candles to help me, too! 🙂
Great post! My biggest block with housework is finding the time to do it! I work part time (including a little from home) and have a very busy 13-month-old son. Nap time is usually for working from home, cooking, or catching up on emails (and, let’s be honest, getting distracted by Facebook and my favorite blogs :)), but I feel like when he’s up I can’t leave him unattended long enough to, say, clean a toilet. That said, I can feel us getting close to the point when I might be able to slip into the bathroom to clean for a couple minutes at a time. What do others moms do?
When I do “get” to clean, I love listening to music/podcasts/NPR or turning on a show. I totally agree with getting good quality cleaning products that you love. (Mrs Meyers lavender is my favorite and I like Seventh Generation for disinfecting.)
My other cleaning block is that in some areas, I feel like I’m not “doing it right.” I learned to clean growing up, but nowadays I use eco-friendly products that are different that what my mom used. I’m interested in Norwex. The micro-fiber cloths sound awesome! …. maybe someone can clarify about the antibacterial properties, though?
I was intrigued by the claims, but according to the Norwex website, it sounds like the cloths don’t actually disinfect the surfaces they clean. The antibacterial properties extend only to the cloth itself: “BacLock TMThis graphic is noted throughout the catalog to differentiate those products that contain an antibacterial agent for self-cleansing purposes only. The agent is solely designed to inhibit bacterial odor, mold and/or mildew growth within the product.”
Please correct me if I’m wrong/misunderstanding that statement! The cloths sound great regardless. 🙂
Thanks for the cleaning encouragement, Haley. 🙂
Just wanted to follow up on this comment. I’ve been kind of obsessed with the idea of these cloths the last few days, and from what I’ve read, it sounds like the cloths actually do pickup something like 99% of bacteria. Then the silver in the cloth goes on to disinfect the cloth itself. (So, while the silver doesn’t actually kill germs on the surfaces you’re cleaning, the cloth does pick up almost all the germs.) I saw this statement in some blogs/reviews , but I can’t find this info on the Norwex page itself… I’m hoping to get a few cloths for Christmas and see how they work! If I can clean with just water, it’ll be much easier to do it with a toddler running around. 🙂
I hate housecleaning, so this was a great post. Just wanted to add that my aunt showed me Norwex products, but they are a bit beyond what I am willing to spend right now. I have a BUNCH of purchased in bulk from Costco microfiber cloths, so I decided to try them on my window and mirrors since I can never seem to find the glass cleaner. I used one wet, then one dry and was amazed how well it worked. I can’t speak to their disinfecting properties, but we aren’t generally licking the windows, so I’m ok with it!
Also, I HAVE to have a podcast or audio book to do deep cleaning. Distracts me from the task at hand, which is, in this case, a good thing! Thanks for sharing your tips too!
My ePantry order is delivered on Thursday and I can’t wait to start cleaning with it. I have two cats & they seem to track everything through the entire house! I’ve already put together an organization list so I have certain cleaning duties everyday in the hopes that I can stay on top of it. Along with your list, I’m hoping these products will make me WANT to clean as much as I need to. Thanks Haley!
Margaret Chang says
Thank you for the recommendation of the BBC series, Lark Rise to Candleford. I just finished EVERY episode of all the FOUR seasons. It is a such great show! I am feeling at loss what to watch. What other programs will you recommend?
Oh good! It’s it delightful?! You should check out my podcast with Christy about all the BBC shows we love. We cover it all, haha. So BBC obsessed!
Tricia Fuller says
The lady who invented and owns Mrs. Meyers Green Day, Monica Nasiff, put out two sumptuous pictorial books full if advice and photos. Laundry and Spring Cleaning. They are Sooooo beautiful I read them at work and think I can’t wait to go home and clean and her classy, witty comments make you feel like Audrey Hepburn or Coco Chanel are teaching you how to iron a shirt!