To feel peace and happiness in my home it has to be clean. I will end up with messes i.e. sewing all over the table or too many things out that need putting away and this bugs me but I can't actually stand filth! And things have to smell nice. I am always smelling things to see if it smells good! haha! I smell products too and I think I'm obsessed with things smelling nice!
I have realised that when you cook and craft a lot then you have a lot of messes to clean up! And also when you are absorbed in a project mess is meantime mounting up!
So how do we keep a clean house and balance that with everything else and also keeping a nice atmosphere at home? There is cleaning too much. Once I was at someones house and literally you could feel her wanting us to leave so she could vacuum. I think getting the balance right is a life long battle!
I tend to clean two ways.... the regular routine... do dishes, wipe surfaces, wash clothes, wash linen, clean the bathroom and so on. Never ending cycle.
Then have blitzes.... go crazy, clean all the windows, windowsills, wipe out cupboards, do things I normally cannot reach, pull out the lounge and do underneath, wash the lounge covers... wash the front door, clean light fittings...
We obviously learn a lot of our ways from our Mum and our Nan's and others. But then there is still more to learn as appliances have changed things and now we need to know how to clean appliances!
The other day I took apart the Dyson and washed the filters and the brush etc. It works so much better. I had to learn how to do it first though and learning these thing usually happens when something goes wrong and you have to actually face up to reading the manual!
For many years I followed Flylady. She is a great help for setting your routines. Also for realising things do not have to be perfect. She says that cleaning doesn't have to be perfect to Bless your family. She also has a routine of a weekly "House Blessing" and you kind of do a power hour that includes mirrors etc. and this has great results! I have always continued to clean out the inside of my car every Friday as that was part of Flylady routine... and the inside of my handbag!
When I need some motivation I still go back to Flylady. She is also on You Tube and is very funny!
The other thing Flylady aught me is that you can do anything for fifteen minutes. If fifteen is too long then do five. You set a timer and just work on something that needs doing. I have conquered huge daunting projects this way, a few minutes at a time. There was a lady I read about on Flylady who had serious health problems and could only stand a few minutes at a time. So her timer went on for three minutes. In her three minute bursts she kept up with her house.
This is like my elderly neighbour and her huge beautiful garden. I asked her how did she manage to keep up the weeding (she was in her 90's) and she said she pulled four weeds a day. This is how small things done consistently works... the end result is mind boggling.
My friend Helen told me about another You Tube lady called Love Meg. She is a young Mum who shares how she cleans. It is weirdly mesmerising to watch someone clean. But I have learned a lot from her! It is motivating too. I was standing on my benches cleaning the high shelves on account of her the other day.
My favourite cleaning product is the Miracle Cleaner I make up. The scent is so fresh that the house smells amazing for a good couple of days.
I love to have soft cloths made up and I stuff them into a big jar with some water and some miracle cleaner. Then I will wipe everything with these, surfaces, windowsills, door knobs...
I LOVE microfibre cleaning cloths and magic erasers. I use both endlessly! If I had to name one cleaning product I couldn't live without it is the magic eraser!
I have found my current mop with was $17 from K mart is the best mop I ever had. It is the Kmart Spray mop. I love this mop so much I have a spare.
Right now we are having a warm spell and then we hope rain is coming. This is the last of the warm weather, but I keep saying that! So I wash the underlay on the bed which is thick wool, the doona, the pillows, cardigans, blankets, lounge throws, the lounge covers....
All of the are washed with my homemade Wool Mix.
The recipe for the wool mix is here. I make up a big batch and it lasts years and years. But your woollens and soft furnishings come out so soft, softer than you thought possible... and they smell divine.
There is only one thing better and that is sunshine. Combined your bedding now smells and feels like sunshine and clouds. It is heavenly. No dry cleaner and bunch of chemicals can compare!
For the high up dusting I have a very long handled feather duster.
It is huge! I take it outside and hit it against a post and watch the dust fly out. It is kind of satisfying!
In my bathroom I now wipe surfaces down with my homemade Thieves Spray. This smells so clean too.
I do the floors with my mop with water and miracle cleaner. I wipe the bath out with miracle cleaner on a sponge. Flylady taught me soap is soap. I will swish and wipe everyday and it takes a few minutes.
As I use the slow cooker a lot it gets baked on at times. I fill it with hot water and leave a dish washer tablet in it over night. The next day it just wipes out clean. No scrubbing! This works on any baked on dish or pan.
The outside splatters come up in a second with a magic eraser. Like new.
The magic eraser has my mix master looking like new also... dough gets stuck on things but this fixes it quickly.
I have soaking buckets for laundry. I use Aldi laundry soakers. Andy's work shirts go straight into a soaking bucket. When they go through the wash they come up perfectly.
I take the filters out of the range hood and put them through the dishwasher. They come up like new.
Then I cut a lemon in half and do a cleaning cycle to freshen up the dishwasher and it comes up sparkling and smelling lemon fresh. I use a toothpick to clean all the little holes in the arms in there...
I have to say the weather plays a big part in cleaning. Yesterday was so warm so I took this chance to wash a lot of linen. The bed all pulled apart is the time to clean behind and under it. I asked Andy to help me flip the mattress so I could clean and rotate that before the underlay goes back on. In the end it all feels so nice! The doors and windows are all wide open.
With everything smelling so good when I emptied the kitchen bin I filled that with hot water and miracle cleaner for a soak. Then I drained it on the lawn and dried it up and washed the lid in the same solution. Once you get going there is a bit of a domino effect.
It feels really good! It changes the atmosphere. It brightens things up. You feel accomplished!
I love learning how to do a better job. I love the good results! I never want to give the impression that I hate cleaning or I hate my home. Or I hate cooking. This is awful to me. I would rather look at it that I love my home, I love feeding my family. As Flylady says it doesn't have to be perfect to bless your family but that is what you are doing ... building up your home and blessing your family.
What are your cleaning tips that make it easier?
Do you have any products you just love?
I forgot to mention a Vanilla fridge spray I get from Coles. I wipe out all the shelves and every time you open the fridge it smells beautiful. A sparkling and organised fridge might be another subject as this is so nice!
Have a wonderful new week. I am still in catching up mode! xxx