Keeping House Clean with Small Children

We have a big area downstairs (3 connected rooms) and a playroom upstairs that we keep clean so that the kids can play in and we go bare feet and can sit on the floor and lie down, wrestle with the kids, etc.

The missus is thinking we need to extent this to the whole house and patio outside so the kids become self sufficient as they get older. This pretty much means leaving shoes outside and going bare feet inside and keeping the whole floor clean (maybe with the exception of a few rooms for storage and separate areas).

I've seen other parents' houses where they don't care and don't mind wearing shoes inside and letting the kids play on the floor. I realise dirt etc. is good for children's health and our kids get a lot of exposure to it, but I'm not so keen for them to play on the floor/sandpit at playgroup and then jump in/sleep in our bed (we change them and wash their hands/feet when they come home).

How do you/did you manage with kids? Where were you/are you on the cleanliness spectrum? Am I too germaphobic?

Comments

  • +10 votes

    You're probably over thinking it.

    No shoes in my house, but that's because I don't want mud, dog shit, etc trekked through it.. And the stick dyson gets a good workout on a daily basis. Think about it though - take your shoes off, and you still have sweaty socks / feet. I don't wipe my house down with anti-bacterial wipes every 10 minutes, but I'm not walking on breadcrumbs either.

  • +23 votes

    Keeping House Clean with Small Children

    Hahahahahahahahahahahaha

    takes breath

    Hahahahahahaha

  • +9 votes

    Acquire industrial strength clothes pegs and hang the children on your clothesline to prevent them breathing on the furniture.

  • +8 votes

    I spent many years living in Canada so the idea of 'outdoor' vs 'indoor' shoes got kind of ingrained. As soon as my family enter the house we swap our dirty shoes for the comfy snoozies/crocs/thongs that live in a basket by the door, and then when stepping outside we put back on the shoes we've dumped and our 'indoor' shoes go back in to await our return. It's all about establishing routines and before you know, it's a habit!

  • +10 votes

    Wearing shoes in the house is absolutely disgusting.

    • +2 votes

      some (not I), might say sweaty bare feet is worse.

      we typically wear socks in house

      •  

        Some (not I), might say sweaty feet in stinky socks is worse.

        We typically have bare feet in house.

        I have a house that has tiles everywhere except bedrooms. Socks are a nightmare for grip. And seriously, who has that big of an issue with their feet sweating that much out of socks? I find feet IN socks makes them sweat and that socks on without shoes is just plain disgusting. Socks help keep that sweat in and multiply the stink…

        +1 for my grandad style house slippers. :D

        • +1 vote

          "Socks are a nightmare for grip"

          you mean fun, the same as driving in the rain is awesome

        • +1 vote

          Tiled floor and socks = drift mode! :D

          ok, ok, you win. socks on from now on :D

    • +2 votes

      Please smell my teenage son's feet before you decide what level of exposure is disgusting.

  • +2 votes

    I lived in Japan for years. shoes in the house?! never.

    my 3 kids leave shoes in the entrance room. and then shoes by the back door for the backyard (if required).

    keeping the house clean - put toys away. as in, if the kids don't play with something for 2 weeks then put in a cupboard hidden. and then bring it out after 6 months.

  • +6 votes

    Keeping House Clean with Small Children

    Wait, isn't that child labour? :)

  • +3 votes

    I agree with others, leave shoes at the front and back doors and buy slippers for each entrance for everyone. Obviously guests can leave shoes on. Then clean up spills and mop regularly. Do not allow people to smoke inside and ensure your pets are brushed regularly and use flea treatments. Most of us oldies grew up in less than sterile surroundings and our immune systems are in pretty good order.

  •  

    Why do mental institutions place a premium on sanitised, uncluttered spaces? Is it a: mental institutions are super clean conscious, or b: mental institution recognize that mental patients feel calmer when the world and those that live in it have been neutralized as a THREAT.

    • +2 votes

      Nurse says that's a Health & Safety requirement to prevent us bumping into stuff.

    • +3 votes

      Correct, a dusty floor is a THREAT!
      Maybe you need to snuggle back into the hug jacket they gave you?

      • +2 votes

        Typing with my nose is difficult, but at least I'm safe here.

      •  

        Please feel free to disregard a million years of evolution. A dusty floor is a threat too people who should have been eaten by now

  •  

    Keeping House Clean with Small Children —- this is a joke right?

  • +1 vote

    I fully support no shoes inside, but other than that, there's not much else you can do. The only other thing I can think of is to change the entire house into floorboards. Sand from the playground is pretty common, but they don't stay as kids forever, next thing you know, they don't even play in the sandpit any more and they've grown out of it! When my son was in childcare, I just shake his shoes and check his pockets before he comes inside, and it's been fine ever since. We did have a few incidents at the start when sand went everywhere in his bedroom, but as parents you also learn as you go so I'd say definitely don't stress too much about mess and just like someone else said before, don't over think it.

  •  

    Keeping House Clean with Small Children

    Reported to mods as trolling

  •  

    So many don't have shoes in the house.

    I don't know any friend or family that doesn't let you enter with shoes on.
    We have tiled floors, live in Qld so maybe don't we're gumboots etc in blizzards like some other states. Non of us have work boots etc either. Of course we check shoes are clean and take them off if wet etc.

    •  

      As I indicated in my post, guests can leave shoes on but it does cut down on tramped in "stuff" if you take the families shoes off at the door. No matter how clean they look, you will be bringing in stuff from the street; particularly if you have kids as they aren't as fussy where they walk.

    •  

      We don't wear shoes at home, but we let our guests to have their shoes in. But usually they end up taking them off anyway.

  • -1 vote

    You're clearly not Asian. Shoes inside is a huge no-no. It's not difficult taking your shoes off before entering the rest of the house just requires a culture update :)

  •  

    Honestly shoes in the house is not such a bad thing but you need solid timber floors for that or tiles ceramic.

    It's not the greatest but can be done.. although I think I lived in a dirty house so there is that lol.

  •  

    Let the kids make mess, get used to vacuuming and spot cleaning more often and be prepared to replace the carpets once the kids get to around 5-7 years old. From my experience, kids make a lot more mess in the house with food than anything they bring on their shoes. Even the sand in their pockets and shoes is much easier to deal with than a piece of banana that has been dropped on the carpet and then accidentally walked on.

  •  

    We (I, not him) are asian. Shoes don't go further than the hallway. At one point we were training housemates so had a washi tape line to indicate where you could go with/without shoes.