I will admit that when I left my Human Resources Director job almost four years ago I had visions of becoming a domestic goddess. Long story short, the only I time I came close was when we were living in Beijing for two years and we had a wonderful part-time housekeeper named Ding. Ding spoke English and came to our apartment from 2-6 p.m., five days a week, Monday-Friday! This was absolute heaven!
For the time that Ding was with us the laundry was always up to date, ironed, folded and put away. The dishwasher was always empty, the furniture was dusted, the floors were mopped everyday! Dinner was prepped and even the walls were scrubbed regularly. Ding would take Donovan to the playground while I got dinner ready and our evenings were relaxed as a result of the act that we always felt on top of everything.
When we relocated back to the US I tried to emulate to daily routines Ding had put in place and I found two books particularly helpful, Sink Reflections by Marla Cilley and the Mrs. Meyers Clean Home book by the real Mrs. Meyers, the mother of the Mrs. Meyers Clean Day product line which I love. Both of these resources help you put a manageable daily routine into place that allows certain aspects of keeping your house tidy to become automatic. They both also address those larger seasonal jobs or problem areas, which Cilley refers to as zones. I found the process of reflecting on our home and creating a routine that would work for us to be quite therapeutic while reading both books and they energized me to begin.
So here's to recognizing that maintaining a home with the busy lives we all follow is truly an art. Luckily it is an art that can be learned and turned into a process if this is a skill that does not come naturally to you which was my case.