The 20-Minute Tidy


What is the 20-minute tidy? Well, when my big boys, now 26 and 22, loved a show called “The Big Comfy Couch” when they were little. It was a cute show about a clown named Loonette and Molly her dolly, that aired from 1992 to 2006.

The show was filmed with her on, you guessed it, The Big Comfy Couch. She leaves the couch for some adventures with her dolly and stretches, reads books, tells time on a huge carpet clock and all of the fun things a clown and her dolly do.

Loonette helped “up” my parenting game when I was a single mom with two little boys.  She would look at the couch and the mess she had made and inquire as to who made this mess. Upon realizing SHE was the one who made the mess she would do the 10-second tidy and pick up the Big Comfy Couch and restore it to looking fantastic, neat, and all tidied up.

I thought to myself, I can do this, although 10 seconds is not enough time to pick up in our house, so we welcomed the 20-minute tidy. I told my boys that if we all work 20 minutes, 1 hour’s worth of work will get done.  Each person has a job to do in that 20 minutes (preferably by themselves, so they don’t fight) and when the job is done, we check to see how we can help the other person.

It works! Thank you Loonette.

I had forgotten about this gem and its usefulness. I now have an 8- year- old and 5-year-old that do not have the benefit of the 10-second tidy on a show with the comfy couch, but I explained to them the process and told Alexa to set the timer for 20 minutes and the tidy-up began.

It still works.

Moms, it is hard to keep up with everything. Sometimes, we need to enlist our little ones in helping tidy up, and it turns out that this works for all different generations of kids.

Things may not be done exactly how you want them to be done (you need to let go of that), but they will get it done and you will be teaching your kids the power of the 20-minute tidy, where an hour’s worth of work gets done in 20 minutes.


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I am a Buckeye by birth, but LOVE Louisville. We have cheered for those Louisville Cardinals for a few years when my stepdaughter played basketball in Louisville and fell in love with the city! I live in Ohio with my husband Tony. Together we have 6 kids, Joe, and his wife Allison, Austin, and his wife Hannah, Sydney and her husband Hayden, Andrew and his wife Lauren and our littles, Max and Eli. Did I mention we are a little nuts starting over with this parenting thing when we are 45+? We are officially a Tiki and Jeep (our version of Grandma and Grandpa) since May of 2022 and have 2 grandsons with a 3rd on the. My husband and I are both ministers, and we get to work together in a local church. We were both married before and brought our families together in 2010. After a few years of marriage, we felt God's leading for us to adopt. We added Max to our family in 2014 and Eli joined us in 2017, our quiver is officially full! Blending our family has been an adventure! Add some ex-spouses and two birth mommas and we have ourselves a crazy crew! Coffee is my love language. The beach is my happy place and I long to have my toes in the sand.


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