I try to do a ten minute sweep of the first floor every night before I go to bed. It looks something like this:
- let dogs out
- pick up Ben Ben's toys and store in bins and behind couch
- put dirty dishes in dishwasher (run it)
- recycle errant cans, paper, etc.
- let dogs in and remove their invisible fence collars
- shove bills and other items to do at work in my work tote
- throw dirty towels, place mats, etc. in washing machine
- clear counter tops of anything else and start an "upstairs pile" and a "downstairs pile"
- lock doors
- turn off lights
- take upstairs pile up and get ready for bed
I PROMISE you this will save you time and sanity in the morning... you won't be ticked when you walk downstairs to an untidy kitchen, you'll actually know where stuff it and you'll be less likely to leave important stuff at home.
In fact, I timed it tonight and it took only eight minutes. If I'm willing to invest 15 mins, I have time to wipe down the counter tops and prep my lunch.
It's one of those little things that makes a huge difference, and every time I DON'T do it, I'm totally annoyed at myself the next morning b/c a chaotic house leads to a chaotic morning complete with forgotten diapers for the sitter, coffee left on the counter, kids with mismatch sock and a mommy without her coat because she was running late and once she got out of the house she wasn't willing to go back in. (this happens. trust me. you can ask my work spouse.)
What are your nightly routines?