Tag: housekeeping & cleaning

How To Fake A Clean House

Weekly Tasks

My house is {almost} always 15 minutes away from looking clean. Four tips I’ve gathered over the years that {almost} never fail to make my house look cleaner than it is:

  1. Spend 15 minutes a day picking up. 
  2. Never waste a trip.
  3. Automate a cleaning schedule.
  4. Target the dead-giveaway-spots.

I’ve got to throw that ‘almost’ caveat in there because if you really live in your home, it won’t always be clean. But you sure can fake it!

Back to the tips:

Tip 1: If your house is basically picked up, it looks cleaner than it is. Guaran-stinkin-teed. 

Tip 2: Double your effectiveness by utilizing the time you’re walking around to put things away. Going to the bedroom? Take something with you that needs to be put back.

Tip 3: Break down the main weekly chores {mine are the kitchen, bathrooms, dusting, and floors,} and assign them each a day. {I use my google calendar so the tasks automatically pop up each week, but sometimes I just like to use pretty paper, so I also made myself a little chore chart.} Depending on the size of your house, you’ll probably spend an hour or less cleaning a day- and if it’s automated, you save time and brain space!

Tip 4: If someone is coming over, hit the tell-tale spots: mirrors, kitchen counter, sinks, and empty the guest bathroom trash. Voila! Fake clean complete.

Now that I shared all my secrets, you have to promise not to look too closely if you come over, ok? Now do me a favor and let me in on your faking-a-clean-house tips, too!

PS If you want a pretty chore chart, too, you can download mine here: GTR Weekly Tasks.

Because I Heart Cleaning

spring cleaning gone wild

I love to spring clean my house. And by love I mean that I love the feeling I get afterward. The cleaning itself? Meh. But after? I feel like I can take on the world. And that my house is awesome. And I, by default, am awesome.

The last two years, I’ve spring cleaned {do me a favor and pretend that’s grammatically correct, mkay? Gratzi.}, organized, and simplified over a whole month to make it doable for my schedule.

My plan of attack:

{Days 1-14}

I organize room by room. I try to assign rooms that are quicker {like the living room} to a busier day, and more complicated rooms {the closet} to a weekend. I give myself two weeks so I can miss some days and not feel bad. Guilt over cleaning = lame. Plus, this is the most time-consuming part of the process. Small caveat: I wait until the end of the month, when our grocery stockpile is at it’s all-time low, to clean out the pantry. It’s all about working smarter, not harder- can I get an amen?

As I go, I make myself three piles:

  1. Keep {Be selective. Have a friend help with this list if you tend to hoard.}
  2. Donate {Give things your family doesn’t need or use to an organization that will give them to a family who will.}
  3. Trash {Get rid of things you wouldn’t give to anyone. Read: ratty, old underwear. Eww.}

I sort through items as I take everything off the shelves. I wipe them, then thoughtfully rearrange as I put everything I’m keeping back. {By thoughtful, I mean I ask questions like, “Do I need to move something I use frequently to a better place?” And, “Are there any small changes that would save time or make life easier?”}

Along with that, I make myself a list of ‘to do’s’ and ‘to buy’s:’

  • Sometimes my to do’s get accomplished right away. For example, I took a delicates bag and hung it on my laundry basket for socks. Now I throw the bag in the laundry and don’t lose socks. {Unless my dog eats them. Seriously. I can’t get him to stop.}
  • We also do a lot of ironing, so on my ‘to buy’ list went a fold-down ironing rack. Granted, I have a feeling this is on a dream ‘to buy’ list, but it may be less expensive than I think. It would sure save a lot of stubbed toes and dangerous ‘the-iron-almost-fell-and-slash-or-burnt-my-hand-off’ moments.

{Days 15-21}

I do my normal weekly cleaning routine, and finish up any extra rooms on the list. I also organize and back up my computer.

{Days 22-28}

I break down deep cleaning tasks: 

  • Cabinets & doors
  • Baseboards & molding
  • High places {vents, fans, etc.}
  • Furniture
  • Floors

Each task gets one day. Leaving margin for busy days is important for me; if I have a crazy day and don’t get to the item, allowing a ‘free’ day keeps me from feeling overwhelmed and giving up.

{Days 28-30}

I go back through my ‘to do’s’ and ‘to buy’s’ with a fine tooth comb. What is unnecessary? What is a priority? I plan out the lists, measure {no skipping this step allowed!}, and go shopping for needed items.

I’ve found this yearly tradition saves me time and money, because I improve the processes I have in place and things are less likely to get lost in the clutter.

Do you spring clean? How do you break it down to make it work for your schedule?

how to {clean make up brushes}

you know how you’re supposed to clean your make up brushes? for one reason or another i never have. (eww. gross. what was i thinking?)

i found this pin for a diy solution and tried it the other week- with impressive results. the brushes came out clean and so soft! (and not vinegary smelling at all.) if you click through to the blog behind the pin, rachel, a professional makeup artist, suggests a different cleaning method that sounds like it worked even better from the comments below. both ways are inexpensive and easy, making them a win in my book!

a life changing moment

i got this text yesterday and laughed out loud.

“used the vinegar and soap trick on my shower doors. two words- life.changing.” -kat (aka the soap scum killa!)

it really did change my life, too, so i thought i’d share.

you know what else will change your life?

finding out what’s at the end of the rainbow. (look closely. it’s a very pale rainbow.)

(my leprechaun name is lollipop.)

sayonara, stains

this trick? totally works. i used it on armpit stains as well as makeup buildup on my white shirts, and even on mysterious grease-like stains on a couple of other shirts i couldn’t bear to part with.

if i had planned ahead, i’d have cool before and after pictures for you, but i didn’t. you’ll just have to take my word for it.

so go out there and have a great monday! eat your meals with gusto and live without fear of stains. watch out, shout! the new kid’s in town.