Volition.com Forums

Username:
Password:
Save PasswordRegister
Forgot Password / Username?
Home | Search | Chat | FAQ | Posting Rules

 All Forums
 Games, Entertainment, Travel, Food & Food for Thought
 Random Thoughts
 Please help me clean my house! (share your tips)
 Reply to Topic
 Printer Friendly

Next Page

Author Previous Topic Topic Next Topic
Page: of 2

Vonette
Star Contributor

Walla Walla, WA
USA
867 Posts

Posted - 08/30/2004 :  10:12:35 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
With three little boys and a dog, my house is in constant chaos. Of course, I hate doing housework, so I'm always getting behind. Maybe we can help each other out by sharing some tips for keeping the house clean with the least amount of time and effort? Also, any tips on how you motivate yourself to get it done or make it less boring would be appreciated. I can use all the help I can get!

To start us off, here are a couple things I have discovered. I love the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser! This product really lives up to its name. It's great for cleaning any wipeable, textured surface. I use it the most on my walls.

When I'm cleaning a cluttered room and I find things that belong in another room, instead of making lots of trips back and forth, I pile everything up near the door until I'm done with the room. Then I take the piled items to where they belong in as few trips as possible.

One of the reasons I hate cleaning is that I find it so boring. Trying to watch TV while cleaning is too distracting since you have to keep glancing at the screen, plus I can't carry the TV all over the house with me. Listening to music is better, but recently I've discovered that books on tape from the library are the best! I don't really mind the work if my brain is occupied with a good story. Because of this, I've finally gotten around to "reading" books that have been on my list for years and really increased my literary knowledge (just finished "Dune" and recently listened to "Tale of Two Cities", "The Scarlet Letter", "Shepherd of the Hills" and "The Devil Wears Prada"--yes I'm an eclectic reader).

MarieSpree
Star Contributor

NY
USA
511 Posts

Posted - 08/30/2004 :  10:58:02 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I have heard wonderful things about the Flylady. I don't use her myself though, so I can't vouch personally. She is at:

http://flylady.net/


My best tip is to never leave something lay where it doesn't belong. As soon as I get home, I open and file the mail, put away any receipts, hang up my coat, etc. I know that if I leave any of those things on the dining room table, it will soon become a pile of junk three feet high. Prevention is my best medicine. This is a hard policy with kids though, so you have to teach them slowly. Making them put away a toy before they may play with another is a good place to start.

"Let's shop til we plop!" "You mean shop til we drop?" "Whatever!"
Go to Top of Page

LauraMarie
Star Contributor

CA
USA
412 Posts

Posted - 08/30/2004 :  11:07:46 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Vonette,

Try www.FlyLady.com ...it will change your life for the better.

Don't just read it and don't try to do everything at once, but do subscribe today!

Someone online told me about the site nearly two years ago. I just read it at first and thought it sounded good, but didn't actually join until just a few months ago when it was mentioned on another group I subscribe to. I swear it has made housework and organizing so much easier for me. Admittedly, I have fallen off of the bandwagon a time or two, but the great part about it is that it's easy to jump back in and not feel overwhelmed. Housework is all about routines and FlyLady is the queen of routines.

Good luck!
Go to Top of Page

Amelia
Valued Contributor

Gresham, Oregon
USA
103 Posts

Posted - 08/30/2004 :  12:49:08 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I love the flylady site. I now clean my shower when Im showering. And no its not gross.LOL I use Arm & Hammer spray shower cleaner(it doesnt have an odor) every time I shower and I keep one of those Brillo scrub n toss pads on my rack. Then once a week when Im showering I scrub down the walls and floor and glass doors. Once every two weeks I use the lysol tub and tile cleaner. My shower stays nice and clean. For the sinks, toilets and counter tops I bought Lysol wipe and toss towelettes. Its soooooo easy to keep the bathrooms clean now. Is like at most, 10 mins for both, once a week.

Amelia
I'm certified! Silver #p0t0iz
Go to Top of Page

TheresaMarie
Valued Contributor

Germantown, Maryland
USA
113 Posts

Posted - 08/30/2004 :  1:38:39 PM  Send TheresaMarie an AOL message  Reply  Reply with Quote
I'll be watching this thread for tips, because the apartment that my boyfriend and I have is terrible. We're embarrased to have people over because it's a mess. Everyone's got their excuse... ours is school on top of work.

This weekend I put my foot down and we started getting on top of some of the issues. I've had lots of "great ideas" for getting the cleaning done, some have worked, some haven't and some we have not tried.

One big thing we did was we got all our clothes out. Every single last piece. Started tossing into piles. "Storage" (Out of season clothes), "Not keeping" and "Keeping". We forced ourselves to be really critical and get rid of the unmatched socks and old, worn out things. Storage items will be taken care of with Rubbermaid storage bins. (One of my biggest goals is to rid the apartment of every last single cardboard box... anything that needs to be in longterm storage will go in a storage bin, instead.)

You might think that cleaning the closet should be the last thing on our list. I decided it was first. Once I have a tidy closet, I will have storage space in that closet again. Things that were once in the closet, but found their way out and cluttered the home can return. Things that should've been there from day 1 can go in there.


Get over your pack rat syndrome. It's HARD. Once you throw things away that you don't need, you'll have more room for things you do. Reevaluate this regularly and toss the junk, don't feel compelled to hang on to it "just because." Obviously, items with sentimental value are harder to deal with.

As for making the actual task more tolerable, I'm certainly no expert on that. I hate to clean, and so it piles up on us terribly. The more you do it, the less there is left?

Good luck!

Mystery shopping since April 2004.
I went GOLD on July 31, 2004 - Baltimore, MD! MSPA Certification: i1i35s
Go to Top of Page

Julie_WA_Writer
Star Contributor

Western, Washington
USA
1777 Posts

Posted - 08/30/2004 :  1:56:51 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
quote:
Get over your pack rat syndrome. It's HARD. Once you throw things away that you don't need, you'll have more room for things you do.
Therese, this is the number one thing!
Number two for me is get the kids to clean first thing in the morning. It's amazing how quickly a slightly messy room will become a total disaster. I've found they are far less likely to make messes in a clean room.

Julie
Go to Top of Page

Debbie Peach
Contributor

IL.
USA
56 Posts

Posted - 08/30/2004 :  9:14:15 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Vonette, I am with you.......I hate housework also. I have discovered that the longer that I let something go, the more overwhelming it gets, so I try to stay on top of it. I read a long time ago in an organizing book, to break the tasks into smaller jobs (Like doing 1 drawer at a time), and only allow 15 minutes to complete it. I did this for awhile, and it helps to stay focused, because if you are anything like me, I get side-treked very easily. I find if I invite people over all the time.....my house stays clean, because I am to embarrassed to let anybody see my house dirty LOL.
Go to Top of Page

Elaine652
Valued Contributor

Portland, OR
USA
236 Posts

Posted - 08/30/2004 :  9:39:18 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Okay, here's Elaine, going against the grain AGAIN! I don't make one trip of stuff that goes to a different room. I guess I look at it as my workout. No baskets, no piles, no catchalls. I grab a thing or two, sometimes even a handfull, and take it to where it belongs. Yes, more trips = more time, but several trips up & down the stairs does wonders for the waistline! I have learned to not be too critical of my housekeeping (until today. We're looking at houses, and one was a house that had 5 kids living there. It was IMMACULATE! How in the world does one keep a house WITH ANY KIDS clean, let alone IMMACULATE??? Its obscene, I tell you! XXX-rated OBSCENE!!!) BUT...I did lose 15 pounds and 2 sizes with this method (which includes breaks to play with DS!) in about 18 months! AND KEPT IT OFF!!! YAHOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

My dilemma (sp) is...how do you get blue ink out of white carpet???

Elaine
Go to Top of Page

Vonette
Star Contributor

Walla Walla, WA
USA
867 Posts

Posted - 08/31/2004 :  12:33:30 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Thanks for all the tips so far, everyone! More are welcome. I checked out the FlyLady site and am intrigued.

By the way, Amelia, another idea for the shower is car wax. I only have to give ours a good scrub about 4 times a year because when I'm done I wax and buff it. The wax keeps water deposits and soap from sticking, so it stays clean an amazingly long time. The floor is the only part that needs more frequent scrubs because waxing the floor would be a dangerous slip hazard. The wax even works on our glass shower door. I was afraid it would make the door look smeared, but it doesn't.
Go to Top of Page

CareyTR
Valued Contributor

USA
220 Posts

Posted - 08/31/2004 :  05:30:03 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Did you try OxyClean to get the ink out? I've never tried it with ink, but it has worked on everything else.
Go to Top of Page

MarieSpree
Star Contributor

NY
USA
511 Posts

Posted - 08/31/2004 :  05:37:31 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
To cure my packratting, I've found this tip online:

Take a box with you, room to room, and place in it your "packrat" things--anything you don't really need or want, but feel hesitant or guilty getting rid of. Once you fill a box, tape it shut very securely. Do not label it with the contents, just write "packrat" or something similar. Put the box in your garage or shed, anywhere you won't see it constantly. Designate a certain amount of time to letting the box sit--say a month, two months, whatever. At the end of that time, if you haven't opened the box, just toss the whole thing without opening it. If you open it, you'll look over every little thing and lose your willpower. Just make it disappear.

One word of caution I learned the hard way: don't do this while also cleaning up stuff you want to keep! My dad took the wrong box to Goodwill for me and there went all my swimsuits and designer summer clothes. I went in to Goodwill the next day but a lot of it had "disappeared". If you're packing up stuff you want to keep, clearly label it!

"Let's shop til we plop!" "You mean shop til we drop?" "Whatever!"
Go to Top of Page

Amelia
Valued Contributor

Gresham, Oregon
USA
103 Posts

Posted - 09/01/2004 :  06:44:00 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
Vonette, what type of car wax do you use? Now Im curious.

Amelia
I'm certified! Silver #p0t0iz
Go to Top of Page

Vonette
Star Contributor

Walla Walla, WA
USA
867 Posts

Posted - 09/01/2004 :  09:00:08 AM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I just use regular Turtle Wax -- the green, globby stuff that comes with a little yellow sponge. I rub on a thin layer, let dry, then wipe off with old rags that can be thrown away when done. It eventually wears off, but it works great for quite awhile.

Another handy cleaning tool in my house is a razor blade scraping tool. It's something they sell in the paint section of the store for scraping dried paint off windows. Mine is just a plastic handle with a razor sticking out the end. I can change the razor when it gets dull. My Mom gave me this tool when I bought a ceramic-topped cookstove, since she found it invaluable to clean hers. I figured if it worked on the ceramic cooktop to scrape off burnt-on food, it would also work on the ceramic tiles of my countertop to scrape off dried-on food. Sure does! Then I tried it on my glass shower door (this was before I discovered I could wax the glass). I had tried scrubbing that glass with three different cleaning products and my Scumbuster to get the film off the glass. It still didn't look clean. But I realized I could use my fingernail and scrape the film off, and that made me think of my razorblade scraper. It was meant to clean windows, so of course it would work on my shower door! You should have seen the shower of white flakes (major dandruff) that I shaved off that glass -- and it was SO easy! It sure shone when I was done.

Speaking of shining, I can't say much for the rest of my kitchen, but my kitchen sink is shiny now (trying to follow the FlyLady's advice). Wish me luck in keeping it that way.
Go to Top of Page

GailGibbsYoung
Star Contributor

Salem, OR
USA
1003 Posts

Posted - 09/03/2004 :  03:24:22 AM  Visit GailGibbsYoung's Homepage  Reply  Reply with Quote
Hire a maid

MSPA GOLD CERTIFIED dejlg4
Go to Top of Page

MaryLou
Inactive

East County / San Diego, CA
USA
915 Posts

Posted - 09/03/2004 :  10:55:52 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I am with you GailGibbsYoung! (X number of shops = one weekly cleaning).

I did learn somewhere that if you use liquid soap at the sinks and especially in the shower, the sink or shower will stay much cleaner. The fat in the bar soap leaves a cloudy film on everything. (Note the need for the razor scraper in a previous post.)

On the RARE occassion that I myself will actually clean something, I like those disposable cleaning wipes. I cut coupons and buy them on sale for 50 cents a pack (Fantastic, Windex, Pledge, etc). I can clean the double sinks in the bathroom in less than a minute.
Go to Top of Page

Vonette
Star Contributor

Walla Walla, WA
USA
867 Posts

Posted - 09/04/2004 :  1:15:33 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by MaryLou


I did learn somewhere that if you use liquid soap at the sinks and especially in the shower, the sink or shower will stay much cleaner. The fat in the bar soap leaves a cloudy film on everything. (Note the need for the razor scraper in a previous post.)




You're probably right, MaryLou. Unfortunately, since my son and I have sensitive skin, detergent allergies, and eczema, we have to use homemade bar soap. My Mom taught me to make it from fat and lye (you can use vegetable fat, so it's not so gross as it sounds). I've been using it all my life, and I love it! I think it's less drying than commercial soaps because of the higher fat content. It also gets your clothes really clean if you grate it up and use it in the laundry.

Now, stop tempting me with the maid service idea! That would totally blow my budget.
Go to Top of Page

MaryLou
Inactive

East County / San Diego, CA
USA
915 Posts

Posted - 09/05/2004 :  10:00:37 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
This is a product that my husband has used for many years, but I just discovered it when I met him.
You can buy it at Health Food Stores, but I have found that it is cheapest at Whole Foods Market of all places. A pint will run you $3-$4, and it lasts much longer than big-name body washes such as Lever 2000 etc. It is mild and you can even dilute it. We use the peppermint castille soap, which tingles if you use it full strength. They used it to bathe our baby at the hospital. The other ones might be more mild.
Dr. Bronner's Soaps.

http://www.drbronner.com/soaps.html
Go to Top of Page

Brenda
Star Contributor

MO
USA
543 Posts

Posted - 09/05/2004 :  10:16:31 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
When I cleaned houses for people years ago, I developed a pattern that I still do in my own house that makes cleaning very thorough and seems to cut down on time. I start at one end of the house, and in each room, start at the ceiling fan/light fixture and work my way down to the base boards before I mop or vacuum. That means everything on the wall, the blinds, EVERYTHING. I carry a grocery sack for emptying trashcans and carry to each room. I always finish up in the kitchen. I have a 2500 sq.ft. home and can finish this kind of cleaning in less than 4 hours. I also have 9 ft. ceilings. I have recently taken on raising my two year old grandchild which has added a lot of extra messes but so far, I've been able to keep up with this type of routine.

A person has to decide if a clean house is a priority that is important enough to them to stay on top of or not. It is for some, it isn't for others. There were some people that would pay me $75.00 to clean their house and you couldn't tell I had even been there within 2 hours after they got home. I still don't know why they even bothered other than they could say they had a housekeeper.
Go to Top of Page

Jnanne
Star Contributor

LA
USA
2867 Posts

Posted - 09/19/2004 :  5:53:54 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I was thinking of this thread as I went through a typical cleaning spree. I am a big fan of Clorox. I believe it really does work better than the cheaper brands, so I stick with it.

I begin by taking my tupperware pitcher with the iced tea stains. I toss the lids and valves to the sippy cups into it, add bleach and water, and let it soak for a while. I drain the bleach water into a bucket, and place it in the bathtub, gathering the shower curtain liner and soaking the bottom (You know, where it has the hem that begins to change colors after a while). I take the pitcher and contents back to the kitchen and clean them in soapy water. I return to the bathroom and pour the bleach water into the tub, and let it sit.

I return to the bathtub and scrub it, using the white hand towel I keep in the car for cleaning off the car windows and mirrors. It gets quite ugly, but bleaches very well. (Yes, I have thought about using a brown towel, but I like being able to see when it is dirty and when it becomes clean).

So, I figure since I get quadruple duty out of the Clorox, it is worth the extra price.


Jnanne
Silver certified
Go to Top of Page

Jnanne
Star Contributor

LA
USA
2867 Posts

Posted - 09/19/2004 :  5:59:24 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I was thinking of this thread as I went through a typical cleaning spree. I am a big fan of Clorox. I believe it really does work better than the cheaper brands, so I stick with it.

I begin by taking my tupperware pitcher with the iced tea stains. I toss the lids and valves to the sippy cups into it, add bleach and water, and let it soak for a while. I drain the bleach water into a bucket, and place it in the bathtub, gathering the shower curtain liner and soaking the bottom (You know, where it has the hem that begins to change colors after a while). I take the pitcher and contents back to the kitchen and clean them in soapy water. I return to the bathroom and pour the bleach water into the tub, and let it sit.

I return to the bathtub and scrub it, using the white hand towel I keep in the car for cleaning off the car windows and mirrors. It gets quite ugly, but bleaches very well. (Yes, I have thought about using a brown towel, but I like being able to see when it is dirty and when it becomes clean).

So, I figure since I get quadruple duty out of the Clorox, it is worth the extra price.


Jnanne
Silver certified
Go to Top of Page

Mimi
Star Contributor

USA
1691 Posts

Posted - 09/19/2004 :  6:34:54 PM  Reply  Reply with Quote
I'm with Gail...hire a MAID!!! They are worth the money especially if you have a big house and a messy DH.

Mimi
Go to Top of Page
Page: of 2 Previous Topic Topic Next Topic  
Next Page
 Reply to Topic
 Printer Friendly
Jump To:
Volition Copyright All rights reserved. Volition is a registered trademark of Volition.com LLC. Go To Top Of Page
This page was generated in 0.53 seconds. Software © Snitz Forums