I realize that this isn't ideal for everyone, but wanted to share a few things that I have found the be immensely helpful.
It was so frustrating to clean house during nap-time, only to find the house in worse condition than it started due to 'playtime.' Toys, tupperware, and toilet paper everywhere. I'd become so frustrated, I began to feel comfortable in this state of life.
It was so DISAPPOINTING.
I never wanted anyone over. I feared criticism when we did have anyone over. Really it wasn't pretty inside or out.
Did I mention we also have a Wheaton Terrier who LOVES to run around outside and bring in a load of foxtails.
My house was a mess to say the least.
1. Embrace the idea of decorating with decorative boxes and baskets. I have used this and find it to be a HUGE time saver. I have bins in Lil's room for toys and such, one in the living room for the same, one on the counter by our door filled with snacks I can stick in my bacg before leaving.
2. As you are walking around the house, pick up anything that you can. Even if it ends up in a pile. You can work from there and begin sorting things. It can become tricky, Lil loves to take her clothes out of her drawer and put them back in (sometimes). When she doesn't I just keeep putting them back and eventually she moves on to a different activity (The short attention span has it's perk).
3. Have them help. Lil loves the dishwasher and laundry. I don't have her play with the dishes and I always take the knives out, but she has fun playing with the door. Laundry is by far the trickiest. She loves to take the clothes out and put them all over the room. I let her choose a few and then I continue folding away from her reach. Once again, she usually moves on by the time I finish and I just pick up the few pieces and fold them. Putting them away is another story!
4. Use the high chair as a place for coloring. I strap Lil in and put down a piece of paper and crayons and let her color. I can then do a few things, dishes or sweeping. By the time she is done, I've had just enough time to tidy up.
I hope this helps. Share what ways you have occupied the kiddos to get cleaning done.