Giving your House a Makeover with HomeRoutines: Step One: Decluttering

There is a four step process to giving your house a makeover, bit by bit, and all the steps work great in HomeRoutines.

  1. Decluttering your Focus zones
  2. Detailed Cleaning in your Focus zones
  3. Simple Improvements
  4. Maintenance

Over the next little while, I’ll be working through each of these steps, and how the HomeRoutines app can help keep you focused.

Minor Chaos in Underthebedland

1: Decluttering your Focus zones

Before you can start really cleaning out your home, you need to get rid of the clutter around the place.  There’s not much point dusting your shelves or polishing your kitchen table if they’re covered in crap items you don’t really love or find to be beautiful or useful. I don’t think we ever get to stop decluttering, because (despite our best intentions) there is always more stuff coming into our homes.  To keep in balance, some stuff needs to go out again… in the trash, to recycle, to a friend or relation, to the thrift store, to sell online, or a garage sale. The main thing is it has to go.

I’m only just getting what it means to really declutter, so I’ll leave the explanations to the experts:

How can HomeRoutines help you declutter?

Take a walk around your house and just note down in your  customized Focus zones, the areas that need reviewing or decluttering.  You might want to even delete the cleaning tasks in your Focus zones lists for now. The time for detailed cleaning will come, but not yet.

(Don’t burn yourself out, though, and if you haven’t got your basic routines going yet, focus on that to start with or it will all fall to pieces.)

For example, in my daughter’s room I need to declutter by:

Decluttering Zone 4

Now you’ve got a list, don’t go rushing around like a headless chook trying to do everything at once, or you’ll end up with the contents of all the drawers and cupboards in the middle of your floor and it will be a horrible, overwhelming mess. Been there, done that, and it sucked. Badly.

Like the FlyLady says, Your homes did not get messy in a day and they will not get clean overnight.

So, each day, when you’ve got a few minutes, you can have a look at your Focus zone list and pick one or two jobs off your decluttering list, for one room.  Set the timer if it will help to keep you focused, don’t start unpacking everything, and get ready to make some decisions.  If you do a bit of decluttering each day or so, after a few months you’ll feel like you have more room to breathe, and soon you’ll be ready to start your detailed cleaning in your Focus zones.

HomeRoutines Review Roundup

5 Jars of Applesauce


Even if you’re not an avid Flybaby, HomeRoutines will help you keep up with all those mundane little chores, and keep your home looking company-ready at all times. Set up is quick and easy, and once you’ve customized your routines and zones, all you have to do is open the app and tap those gold stars as you get things done. HomeRoutines is well-worth its $4.99 price, and earns five jars of applesauce!


This app is definitely worth the effort and is a great way to organize your home life to keep yourself on task.

The Urban HausFrau

Instead of emails a bazillion times a day, I have HomeRoutines. I LOVE my iPhone and have come to rely on it’s handy dandy apps for almost everything so for me, this is a good fit.  I’m a list making, gold star loving kinda girl…now if I can only figure out how to get the virtual gold stars on my forehead.

Mommyhood Adventures

Another thing that makes me happy is this itouch/iphone app called HomeRoutines. It helps me stay on top of the things I need to get done each day at my house. It has lists of common household routines that you can customize. It’s for those of us that like to make lists and cross them off, without having to think of what you need to do in your routine and write it down everyday. Saves paper and you get stars when things are done! Whoo hoo! Who wouldn’t want a gold star?!?!

Fun Family Ideas – a great use for HomeRoutines’ Daily Reminders

Screenshot of HomeRoutines showing family fun ideas

We got a nice review on the App Store the other day from Jennspire, who wrote:

I downloaded this app this evening and I’m up WAY past my bedtime because I’m still playing. I recently left my job to become a sahm (to a 6 year old) and this app is a great way to help me get a grip my new priorities. I love the daily note – I used it to remind myself of the fun things that never seem to get done (“art fun day” “silly dance afternoon” “family walk night” and “mom’s pampering night”). I can’t wait to keep evolving this app – and myself – as I learn to “fly” for my family!

What a brilliant idea, Jennspire! The Daily Reminders on your home screen are an excellent place to put all sorts of reminders. Another reviewer mentioned using them to remind her of her daily fitness goals.

PS: I added “Make cookies” to the screenshot I made up there, because … mmm, cookies.

Do you use your Daily Reminders for something interesting? Leave us a comment!

HomeRoutines featured on the App Store as New and Noteworthy

New and Noteworthy
We are note worthy!  We are note worthy!

Great post on SimpleMom about the value of routines with kids

Tsh on SimpleMom has an excellent article today about the value of thinking about, and developing your own routines with kids

There’s nothing magical about any one particular routine — it’ll probably change in a month anyway, as routines often do with little ones in the house. But simply having some sort of written-out plan helps me know what’s next, how to stay focused, and not feel like I’m running in a hamster wheel.

I love this thought.  I can get stuck in a stupid perfectionist rut where I wrote out a routine a month ago that was okay then, for like five minutes, and then it didn’t work for me any more, but I still felt guilty for not following that particular routine.  I’m just happy to be “allowed” to edit my routine as I wish!

HomeRoutines is now available in the App Store

We’re thrilled to annouce that the HomeRoutines app is now available in the app store. It’s just the place to store your own housework routines or your Flylady routines, on your iPhone or iPod touch.