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3/20/19 — Hey Mama! Before you keep reading, I wanted to pop in and tell you that I have a new FREEBIE that is pretty incredible. If you are struggling to keep up, if you want to be more productive, or if you are feeling stuck in a rut, grab my SAHM schedule! This is the exact schedule that I follow to enjoy my life rather than cleaning up after it-all preloaded into a Trello board for your convenience! Grab it here!
Are You Drowning In Dirty Dishes?
Keeping up in the kitchen is a heavy task, especially when you have a family. With my three kids and two adults, we eat about five times a day, sometimes more. The number of dirty dishes that come from eating that often is, well, I’m sure you can imagine!
Since I started blogging, and my WFG career, I sometimes fall off of the planning wagon. That means that I have to catch up on the days that I fell behind. Sadly, catching up takes WAY more effort than maintaining does. When I am drowning in dishes, it is time for what I like to call a kitchen reset.
What Is A Kitchen Reset?
The idea of a kitchen reset is to get your kitchen sparkling clean and ready to maintain for the future. The goal is to only need a kitchen reset on occasion, rather than on a frequent basis. I have proven to myself that when I start cooking in a clean kitchen, it is so much easier to keep it clean while cooking. Even better, the amount of clean-up is minimal. I am much more likely to hop in and do my five minutes worth of dishes after we eat when I start with a clean kitchen in the first place.
Related: The Best Kitchen Essentials to Save You Time & Energy
How To Get A Clean Kitchen Fast
If you have a dishwasher, you will want to ignore it. Yes, you read that right. Ignore that machine! If you are at this point, you will have too many dishes to fit into one load, and that means that you will end up procrastinating. Our goal is to completely reset today. To finish with every dish in its place. You will be washing dishes by hand today.
Before you get started, I want you to make this as enjoyable as possible for yourself. I highly recommend watching a movie on your phone or listening to music.
1. Grab a big towel.
I’m talking a beach towel. You do not want to run out of room for more clean dishes to dry. Lay that baby out on your counter. It’s okay if you don’t have an empty counter-do what needs to be done to create that space. Put the dishes on the floor if you have to. Or, you know, just create a sliver of space with the towel bunched up and get the dishes that are in the way washed first. The one thing I DON’T want to see you doing is rearranging your dirty dishes to make room. Don’t waste your time!
2. Start with the “cleanest” dirty dishes that you can see.
Since you are reading this post, I’m going to assume that your sink is overflowing and that there is a mod-podge of clean-ish and super-dirty dishes in all sizes. Don’t bother filling your sink yet. Grab a dish-wand if you have one. (I highly recommend them!) If not, a rag will work, but you are going to need to keep your soap handy. Grab the cleanest dish you can see on top, and wash, rinse, repeat.
3. Soak It
After a bit, you will start running into the dishes that need to be soaked. These are the gunky, stuck-on, would-take-twenty-minutes to scrub dishes. Don’t waste your time and energy scrubbing. Now is the time to fill your sink and put that water to work.
4. Gather Around, Dishes
After you have a full sink of soapy water and nasty dishes soaking, let them be for a few minutes. Start grabbing the dishes from around the house. Check all of the bedrooms, living areas, and even the bathrooms. By the time you have rounded everything up, you should be ready to proceed with washing. It’s not the time for a break yet! Just get it done.
TIP: If you have, let’s say, a spaghetti bowl that is sticking really badly, just wipe what you can and drop it back into the sink. Taking off the layer that is already soft makes it so that the hard layer underneath will be exposed and the water will soak into it more quickly. This method really helps to avoid scrubbing. Let the water do its job!
Related: Team Power Clean: How To Clean With Kids
5. Empty The Fridge
Once your counter is filled and every dish is clean, it is time to clean out the fridge. Sadly, this probably means more dishes for you. But, that’s why we are doing this. Get them empty and soaking if needed. Take out the stinky trash filled with leftovers before you move forward. A stinky kitchen will defeat the purpose of this reset!
6. Tie Up The Kitchen Cleaning
While you wait for the dishes to dry, wipe down the fridge shelves and drawers with an all-purpose cleaner. Wipe down the counters and the table. Sweep and mop really fast.
By this point, the dishes that you started with are probably dry. Put away what you can. If you are puttering out, it’s okay to take a break at this point, as long as you come back and finish putting those dishes away! Set a timer for two hours and then make yourself finish.
Related: Five Mindset Changes To Help Keep Your Home Clean and Tidy
Congratulations, You did it!
I know that was a lot of hard work. The great news is that your kitchen will be so much more functional without the mess of dirty dishes everywhere. Make sure that you maintain all of the hard work you just did. Welcome to the world of a clean kitchen, my friend.