Blast Winter Clutter: 5 Tips For Spring Cleaning
It’s Spring time already? Where has the time gone? Daylight savings time will be springing forward soon, the leprechauns have got their clovers ready for St. Patrick’s Day and Easter is hopping closer and closer. Some where in between all of these things, there’s one more Spring time essential that must be done: Spring cleaning! This year will be no average year for spring cleaning in my household. I’ve been doing some research and this spring, I’m on a mission to bust my winter clutter.
- Use Alternate Cleaning Supplies
- Read the Label
- Don’t Be a Pack Rat!
- Get the Family In On It
Many people may think, “What? You’re talking about power cleaning and clutter busting and you’re going to start with safety? It’s just cleaning, Do I really need to worry that much about safety?” I don’t mean to scare anybody, but every year there are 20,000 deaths and 21 million hospitalizations from home-related injuries so the first and foremost item on my list is to stay safe! Here’s a few safety tips: When you’re going to be spending a lot of time bending, kneel instead and wear some knee-pads to keep yourself comfy. When clearing and re-organizing clutter, make sure you leave any doorways, hallways and stairs clear of objects to trip on (about ½ of those injuries I mentioned are from tripping and falling). When carrying arms full of household items, make sure that you can see the ground and the path you’ll be walking over or around your load. When you have to use a step ladder, don’t take any risks. Lastly, before you doing anything strenuous, stretch yourself out and warm up a bit, like you would before exercising. You’d be surprised how much that will improve your energy and attitude while cleaning, while at the same time reducing your chance of injury.
There are tons of alternate cleaning supplies out there that you might not expect to use as an alternate to toxic or environmentally harmful products. Try some of these: Pour a cup of white vinegar and some lemon juice in your toilet bowl and let it sit over night to remove hard water and rust stains. Use Johnson’s Baby Oil to clean any metal surface from faucets to hubcaps. Mill some rice grains in your coffee grinders and they will absorb any stale smells and oils. Discard the rice and wipe it clean. There are tons more healthy and earth- friendly alternatives as well as more cleaning and decorating tips at realsimple.com. Check them out!
If alternate methods aren’t cutting it and you have to use some harsh cleaning materials, make sure you read the label first and follow all the instructions exactly. Never mix chemicals and make sure you wear gloves and a mask to minimize exposure to body. Make sure your pets and children steer clear while you’re using harmful chemicals.
I can’t stress this one enough. The worst downfall for spring cleaners (I know it is for me) is the thought “I’ve never used this before and I’ve had it for 3 years but what if i need it some day?” Dump it! If you happen across something that you haven’t seen in a long time, here’s a few things to think about: How long has it been buried (or lost)? Have you looked for it and been unable to find it? Have you thought about it even once since it the last time you saw it? If the answer to either of these is ‘no’ – get rid of it! Give it away, throw it in a yard sale, sell it, trash it, just get rid of it! Don’t hold on to things you don’t need and your house will be much more clutter free and if your house is anything like mine, clutter-busting is 75% of the battle.
Make it a game and have the family race to see who can get done first. When they’re done, perform an inspection and have a reward ready for the winner! If they’re not down for that, bribe them with toys or food. “We can have pizza twice this week if you get your rooms clean by the end of the week” or “For every five toys you donate to the yard sale, I’ll get you one brand new one. No, you can’t donate your sister’s toys.” Increasing your work force can drastically decrease the time it takes to get your home spic and span for spring time.
Rebecca Chelsey loves to spend time her family and she has more time to do so when her life is organized! Outside her life as mother and wife, she also works for Homeseasons, which has simplified the holidays with 4th of July decorations, Halloween Holiday arrangements and ideas for every holiday in between.