Thursday, December 23, 2010

Good Housekeeping

Let me begin my saying that I'm not a "perfect" housekeeper (I guess I must say I really don't think I know anyone who is). A bit of clutter and chaos is welcome in my home. It keeps things interesting, right?

Grime, grit, dirt, dust and filth--however--are on a whole different level to me. I just can't stand it. So, in other words, you may find a pile of mail on my dining room table, but it'll be a clean dining room table--sans dust and food crumbs.

Growing up, my mother kept a very clean house and I absorbed many great cleaning tips from her. In high school, I cleaned a few homes for extra money and picked up valuable dust-busting tricks there, also.

Here are a few of my favorite cleaning tips:
  • Vinegar. It's natural, it's cheap--yes, a bit pungent. Vinegar is a top-notch cleaner. It cleans windows; shower doors; soap scum-crusted faucets; garbage disposals; and more. I found this great site with tons of vinegar cleaning tips. One of my favorite tips to use at home is to pour a little with some hot water in my stainless steel cookware. It takes any residue off the steel and shines it up beautifully.
  • Pumice stones. Two words: the toilet. Pumice stones will remove the stains you can't get with other cleaners. Simply wet the stone and scrape away. Don't worry, it shouldn't scratch your toilet.
  • Borax. Borax is another highly-versatile cleaner. Add it to your laundry to get better, cleaner results. I use it to make a paste and clean my oven. The Borax box is also chock-full of cleaning tips. Find this in the laundry aisle of your local supermarket.
  • Newspapers. Use newspapers instead of paper towels to wash your windows. You'll be recycling and I think it gives the windows a better shine.
  • Baking soda. Baking soda is a great deodorizer and cleaner. The New Homemaker website here has tons of tips.
  • Hot water and a clean, white rag. Hands down, the best way to clean your walls. Forget those Magic Erasers, which can take the paint off your walls. Wring as much water out of the rag as you can and gently go to work on your walls.
Additionally, all these cleaners are much more eco-friendly (or family/pet-friendly) than most traditional cleaners and so extremely affordable.

And if that doesn't motivate you to clean, maybe these fabulous cleaning gloves from Elizabeth's Embellishments will? I found this site while browsing the web and I just had to link up to this site.

Photo from Elizabeth's Embellishments website.

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