Thursday, March 17, 2011

Cleaning Conumdrums Revisited

So I'm not sure why I thought this post was going to be a good idea. I started feeling under qualified to give cleaning advice. I mean, sure I have cleaned houses besides my own but besides that what expertise do I really have to offer?

I will preface this post saying that what is written here are my opinions on how I do things. If you have something that works for you; that's great...I want to hear about it!

Furthermore, after I got a request to post pictures I almost threw in the towel because I am not one to wants to display my house. Just opening my cupboards and taking these pictures made me feel like I was walking around in my underwear!

So just so you now I am posting pictures not to show off (there is truly nothing to brag about) but because they were requested.

On those same lines, I took the pictures just how things were so rest assured that I am keeping it real! Now that that is off my chest, on with the answers....drum roll please!


I clean in zones and usually in the same pattern. Having a cleaning pattern makes it less likely that you will forget something and have to go back and do it. An example would be; bathrooms, dust, kitchen counter tops and range, sweep, mop, then vacuum.

The shower; one of my most dreaded and time consuming chores!

I clean mostly in street clothes but if I am to do a "dirty job" such as the shower I would have on "work clothes" and my cleaning apron...picture is horrible' St. Patty green not so flattering shirt when combined with the apron and oh so blurry but that's what you get for taking one when no one was home trying to finish this dang post!

For me the apron helps to have everything together when I clean so I don't have to go searching for anything when I'm on my hands and knees already. So for the shower I would have: a cup, two sponges (regular and bristly one), a toothbrush, softscrub (or similar) and plain old windex.

Nothing fancy here. Wet shower, apply product, scrub (in between the tiles, corners, everywhere!) Use cup to rinse shower out. Spray faucets and entire shower with windex, dry with towel.

Shower doors however are a different story! Go here to find my secret!


For me, everything needs a home. For me I like to use baskets. Some I have purchased specifically for this others I have had forever and have simple recycled them to fit our needs. Basically, be economical, it doesn't have to looks fancy but if you have the budget, go here for storage solutions.

One thing I particularly love is the shelving in my kids closets; they have shelves, drawers and a place for all their if only our closets had that! ;)

Kids bathroom
: extra toothbrushes, floss and paste

Hall closet
; nothing fancy. Board games and blankets and you can see our red 72 hour backpacks peeking out from the floor.

1) first aid supplies 2) batteries 3)sunscreens and aloe 4) shoe polish- now I don't know why we have an entire basket full of shoe polish but we do!

The strategy of having designated homes for things works for me because if something is out of place I am not searching for a place to stash it to get it out of the way because there is a place that I have designated for it {perhaps a little reverse psychology on myself but it works!}

This one was hard for me because I don't pay the bills. But when I get mail/bills I have a certain place I always put them. Bills go to Andrew (divided organizer) once paid they get filed.

However, if you don't have place for files you could use ringed binders, folders with dividers , or plastic dividers with pockets. The rest (mail, magazines, important papers) has a home in a basket until I can go through it. An ingenious way to store receipt that weigh down our wallets is Quick Receipts...truly awesome!

Kitchen: baking ingredients and cook cooks together-check.
pans and lids together-check, check

I keep some kid stuff in the kitchen so it's near the table. Bin on left has crayons, pencils, markers, coloring books and paper. Bin on right has music stuff (life saver during dinner prep! The top shelf has learning stuff and craft supplies.


Lucky for me I have a pantry. This really was a must-have. We {Andrew} likes having a variety of cereals so our shelves vaguely resemble an isle at the grocery store.

Again with the "like-things" together.

Noodles in a basket next to their sauces.

Packets of dressings or drink mixes in another container (this one happens to be a random reusable plastic glade container that I already had, who's lid grew legs and ran away!)

Another thing I did in the pantry is placed the things that I need access to most often in front. I don't get the canned goods that often so they got the boot to the back of the pantry.

House of Smith's has an inspiring pantry but for me it was a bit too fancy because after all it's just a pantry!

Glad that's done! Hope I didn't bore you.

Now I have a question for you; what are YOUR cleaning secrets?


chels said...

Tiff- You have no idea how much this has helped me...I have been trying so hard at getting better with staying up on cleaning-esp. since G is constantly on the floor. When I want to do the whole house, I never knew where to start-and how to attack the shower and tub! So thank you...perfect timing, just before Saturday which is my new cleaning day. You are an inspiration. Oh, and I never thought of an apron-who knew?

Anonymous said...

Love the apron idea as well as baskets clustering alike things together! Very Cool!!

Carrie said...

Fun post! Always fun to try and find a better way of doing things! I love the baskets for pots and pans! Never thought of that, though I've always wanted the pull out shelves for easier access. I'm going to do that one! And sorry for the added stress!!! Think that's my fault!! So I am bringing you a treat!

Carrie said...

Oh...and the shower door solution is great! Never heard that one and my mil has been searching for a solution that actually works for that one!

As for any tips I have...drawer organizers...ikea or target or shoe boxes for socks, undies...And I must have disinfecting wipes in every bathroom cupboard, under kitchen sink, etc!

Tiffani said...

Carrie, I too would love pull out drawers for pots and pans that way you aren't breaking your back every time you need one...I should have Andrew look into that!

LISA said...

From one cleaning/organizing fan to another....I loved this post!
You took the words right out of my mouth when you said - everything needs a place.

Alexis said...

I love this post. I can always use cleaning idea and orginization tips. Thanks for the hard work you do to make your home look so nice so that we can admire it.

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