No Yaya/Helper, No Problem

Coping Without A Maid

It's been over a year since our last helper left. We are managing our day-to-day life by getting help from different people, suppliers/companies that offer goods and services like cooking our food, doing the laundry, cleaning of the car and other household chores. I think by doing that, we actually saved money and in the process also helped more people.

I am fortunate that my daughter's school canteen sells viands not only to students but also to parents who do not have the time/energy to cook at home like me. Every morning at 9AM, I receive a list of the food available for the day thru SMS and I pick up my order/s during dismissal time. Price of one viand is only Php 70. I normally order one or two viands per day. Each serving is good for 3-4 persons. For rice, I cook like twice or thrice a week because we are cutting down on carbohydrates. DH bought a silicon cover that kept the rice from drying/spoiling even when refrigerated.

2 viands x Php 70= Php 140/day
5days x Php 140= Php 700/week
4 weeks x Php 700= Php 2,800/month

Lil' Ron's Kitchen Experience

When school is over, I contact my reliable cousin of Lil' Ron's Kitchen to order tiap chai/tsai/tsay-  a daily food subscription of home cooked meals. The cost is per person and I usually order just for two because my daughter does not eat much. At Lil' Ron's Kitchen, an order per person consists of Soup, Vegetable and 2 viands unlike other food delivery services where you just pay for every viand you order.

Ordering is so easy, just browse through his FB page for a copy of the month's menu then contact him via Direct Message (DM) or his cellphone 0917 8115133. What I normally do is order from Monday to Friday then I pay him the full amount at the beginning of the subscription or the amount due for 5 days.

I bought stainless steel food containers that way I won't be adding to the pollution from plastic containers. I rarely cook these days because it's time consuming and well, I am not that into cooking haha I just rely on tiap tsai.

6570 Laundromat

I found a laundromat a few blocks away from where I live. I used to hand wash certain types of clothing plus my daughter's uniform prior to discovering this establishment. Now, except for my underwear, every piece of clothing goes into the laundry bin. 

I segregate our clothes into 3 baskets- one for my daughter's clothes including her uniforms, one for tops and one for bottoms. I  put all the socks and small items of clothing inside a net to avoid missing them.  So, every wash day, I pay for 3 machines. It's Php 65 for Wash, Php 75 for Dry and Php 40 for Fold. It comes to Php 22.50 per kilo. But I prefer Wash & Dry only. I like to fold our clothes, my way ; p I only pay Php 17.5. 

Each laundry machine can carry a full load of 8 kilos so I get 3 machines to simultaneously wash our clothes. I bring a bottle of Perwoll, my choice of laundry detergent. No need for fabric softener for our clothes. The clothes smell nice after every wash. 

The good thing about 6570 Laundromat is that I can drop-off my laundry and just pick them up after 1.5 hours. The staff will transfer all the clothes from washer to dryer. 

Here's the good news! Every Wash & Dry combo entitles you to a stamp on 6570 Laundromat Loyalty Card. Get all 20 stamps and you can avail of ONE (1) free Wash & Dry Cycle. That's Php 140 savings... yey!

3 cycles x Php 140 = Php 420/week
4 weeks x Php 420= Php 1,680/month

Car Wash

For some time, our cars were never washed. No, I am not kidding! Yeah, I know... it's really dirty. As in YUCKY! Then one day one of our security guards told me that he wanted to earn extra cash for his growing family by washing our cars when he's off-duty. Why not?! It's better than asking for cash advance or worse... steal. Every end of the month, he earns an extra Php 600 from our unit. 

3 cars x Php 50= Php150/week
4 weeks x Php 150= Php 600/month*

*Labor/service only; I provide all the supplies needed to wash the car

Gruenheim | Mike Gamez

Aside from washing the surface of the car, I know the interior needs a good vacuuming also.  If you have a 6-year old child, you know what I mean ; p One of the cars that I drive is more than 10 years old. It has an unpleasant odor. You can smell it once you get inside the car. 

The only person I know that can do the job is Mike Gamez of Gruenheim Home Appliances. For Php 2,500, his staff of 2 cleaned the interior of the car for 3 hours. They gave the car a much needed bath- shampoo, steam cleaning and sterilizing using a UV light.

I still remember the first time I contacted Mike, I was experiencing severe urticaria when I chanced upon an Instagram post showing him and his team cleaning in action. I didn't think twice and scheduled home cleaning services right away. There's nothing compared to the feeling of cleanliness and peace of mind knowing that you are sleeping on a dust mite free mattress at night. Bed/mattress, pillows and upholstered chairs have different prices. 

Cleaning Lady

Twice a week, there's a cleaning lady that comes to my house at 7AM to do the mopping of floors in the living, dining, kitchen and bedrooms. She also cleans the toilets. Occasionally, I let her wipe with a clean rug all the wooden furniture. 

Initially, the cleaning lady came everyday for five straight days for general cleaning of the whole house. For three hours each day, she was able to clean everything from cabinets, drawers and even the storage areas. I pay her Php 500 per visit (3 hours). 

2 days x Php 500= Php 1,000/week
4 weeks x Php 1,000= Php 4,000/month*

*Labor/ service only; I provide all the supplies needed to clean the house

Maidless in the City

The decision to not hire a permanent helper these days is based on my experience with them. I used to employ three helpers at a time- a nanny/yaya, a cook and one that does the general cleaning of the house. They sure made a mess inside and outside. 

The yaya hurt my child. Good thing, I caught it early on. She even wore my clothes and posted them on Facebook. Mind you, not just any clothes, it's my Speedo bathing suit.. que horror! 

Right after they left, I decided to not employ one. We stayed maidless for over a year but after that, we hired one just to do some basic stuff like washing the plates and throwing the trash. During that time, I was already ordering tiap tsai and bringing my dirty laundry to a laundromat. She left because she wanted more time with her kids so I let her be. 

So, yeah, living without helpers can be done. You just have to find good service providers like the people I recommended in this entry. 

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