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Tag Archive | "cleaning"

Stress-busting speed-cleaning tips for the holidays


(BPT) – It’s no secret the holiday season can be one of the busiest and most stressful times of the year. What is one of the biggest sources of stress? It’s cleaning on a deadline, especially while guests are on their way.

But with the right plan in place, even last-minute pre-entertainment cleaning can be efficient and stress-free, says Debra Johnson, Merry Maids home cleaning expert.

In an online survey conducted this spring by Toluna, more than half of respondents admitted that most of their cleaning takes place just before guests arrive. With a bit more focus, this preparation can be quick and effective, without stress. After all, the holidays shouldn’t be a race against the clock. They’re about spending time with loved ones.

Johnson shares the following tips to clean smarter, not harder, in the limited time you have before guests arrive.

1. Ready, set … declutter 

The important first step is to declutter rooms. Set a timer if needed to help you stay on track and avoid spending too much time in one room. Put things where they belong, or if they don’t have a home, put them in a room or under beds where no one will see. Once the holiday season passes, you can revisit and declutter those hidden storage areas. Prioritize rooms you use most, so if you run out of time, guests won’t notice an untidy area.

2. Only clean what guests will see 

Join the more than one-third of Americans who don’t bother cleaning rooms people won’t see. You have enough to stress about as the host. Don’t waste your precious time cleaning parts of the home no one will ever see. Simply shut doors to rooms that you want to keep private, signaling to guests not to enter. If you have family staying with you, give guest rooms a once-over, clean the bathrooms that will be used and, of course, the kitchen and living room.

3. Skip the sweep

Don’t spend time sweeping with a dry mop when you can vacuum instead. Vacuuming is far more efficient and faster at removing dust, dirt and other debris from the floors. Keep a portable hand-held vacuum nearby in case a big mess happens, such as a glass breaking during a party. Within seconds, the mess will be gone and you can go back to enjoying the festivities.

4. Speed-clean the bathrooms

All you need to clean your bathroom quickly is a damp microfiber cloth to give every surface a quick wipe-down and a toilet brush to clean the inside walls of the toilet. To freshen it up even more, pour a half-cup of baking soda into the toilet bowl and add white vinegar along with a few drops of your favorite essential oils. Allow the mixture to bubble for a bit and scrub with a toilet brush. Then, voila: your bathroom is clean, shiny and smelling great.

5. Tackle the microwave mess

You know people will want seconds well after the leftovers are put away, so use this quick tip to tackle microwave build-up: Combine lemon juice and water in a microwave-safe bowl and run it for about two minutes. The lemon water will loosen any gunk or food in the microwave for an easy wipe down with a microfiber cloth. Now guests can reheat their leftovers in a clean microwave.

“Hosting a holiday dinner requires prep work, but if you stay on track before anyone arrives, you can spend more time actually relaxing and enjoying their company,” said Johnson.

If you simply don’t have any time to spare this holiday season, Merry Maids has the resources and experts to help. Find a location in your area by visiting www.merrymaids.com.

With the cleaning under control, all that’s left for you to do is to light a few candles, conquer the grocery list and, of course, enjoy your special guests.

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CTA students clean up library


Raven Fleet with her technique of cleaning shelves and books in a way to be sure they were returned to the shelf in proper order.

Raven Fleet with her technique of cleaning shelves and books in a way to be sure they were returned to the shelf in proper order.

On Thursday, April 29, twelve CTA 6-11 grade girls descended on the Cedar Springs Public Library with their teacher/mentor, Samantha Liscombe, and worked from 3-5 p.m.

The girls pulled books off the shelves all over the library from front to back, cleaned the shelves and wiped germs off the books, DVDs and books on CD. The girls called for the section of the library they wanted. Shouts were heard, such as, “I get the young adult section,” and “I want the DVDs”, “We want the children’s section,” and so forth.

It was a massive undertaking and was accomplished with the passion and energy of youth. Director Donna Clark was on hand to enjoy the fellowship and to supervise the volunteers. Those helping out were: Sophyna Ross, Willow Sidlauskas, Kristina Wilhelm, Raven Fleet, Alyssa, Autumn and Ashley Shelagowski, Tatyanna Lawson, Olivia Martinek, Kaeala Bucholtz, Destiny Batchelder and Samantha Harris.

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Simple tricks to refresh your home


Photo courtesy of Getty Images

(Family Features) Staying indoors so much during the winter months can create clutter and mess around the house. But you don’t have to wait until spring to give your house a good spring cleaning, and you don’t have to do an extreme makeover. You can wake up and spruce up a tired-looking home with a few simple cleaning and organizing routines.

Here are some tips and tricks for making your home spring-clean right now, one room at a time.

 

Living Room

• Window blinds collect dust and dust mites all winter. To clean plastic blinds, add Greased Lightning to tub water. Remove blinds and let them soak in the tub. Clean them with a well-bristled brush, then let them dry and rehang them.

• Remove fabric window coverings and clean as needed. Use a feather duster around window frames to remove cobwebs and dust.

• Freshen up carpets by sprinkling baking soda on them, letting it sit for 30 minutes, then vacuuming.

• Carefully wipe the tops and bottoms of ceiling fan blades, which provide a perfect, level surface for dust to collect.

 

Kitchen

• Clean out the refrigerator and freezer, making sure to get rid of all expired products and old leftovers. Remove shelving and drawers and wipe them down using mild soapy water.

• Tackle your oven, inside and out. If your oven is self-cleaning, set it in the self-cleaning mode. Consult your manual for an estimated cleaning time. Also, make your stovetop and hood shine like new with a quick wipe from a sponge sprayed with Greased Lightning. If your oven is not a self-cleaning appliance, use the cleaning solution to wipe away baked on grease and grime. Remember to make sure the oven is cool before applying the solution.

• Don’t forget to clean your dishwasher, too. Remove trapped food particles from the bottom and around any moving parts. Pour a cup of vinegar into the empty dishwasher and run it to clean the inside.

• Wipe down the outside of your cabinets, especially around the stove area.

• Vacuum and mop the floors, and launder any area rugs.

 

Bedrooms

• Launder bed linens — including dust ruffles, bedspreads and pillow shams.

• Move furniture around so you can vacuum underneath and get rid of any dust bunnies that might have accumulated. While you’re at it, try a new furniture arrangement to freshen up the look of the room.

• Now’s a great time to clean out clothes closets. Empty closets to vacuum and dust inside. Then, before putting clothes back, sort through them and get rid of those items that no longer fit or that you don’t wear anymore. You can donate them to a local charity.

• Clean blinds, light fixtures and ceiling fans. Wipe smudges off of light switch covers and door frames, too.

 

Bathroom

• Wipe down and disinfect all fixtures. Remember lighting fixtures, too. Carefully remove glass fixtures and clean with warm, soapy water. Let them dry thoroughly before reattaching.

• Sort through products and discard or recycle old bottles and containers. Get rid of excess clutter in your bathroom cabinets. Remove items from the medicine cabinet and wipe down all surfaces.

• You can use Greased Lightning to remove grease, grime, mildew stains and soap scum from your bathroom surfaces, including tubs, sinks, toilets, counters and baseboards.

 

To get additional tips to spruce up your home, as well as coupons from Greased Lightning, Like them on Facebook, or visit www.glcleans.com.

 

 

Fresh Ideas for Cleaning

 

Furniture Moving Trick

When you need to move heavy pieces of furniture across uncarpeted floors, fold two clean towels, put one under each end of the furniture piece, then slide it across the floor.

 

Clean Lampshades

Use an adhesive lint roller to get the dust off of fabric lampshades.

 

Use Smart Cleaners

You don’t need a separate cleaning product for every room in the house. The pros use a few good, general cleaners to tackle multiple types of messes. Learn more about the Greased Lightning family of products at www.glcleans.com.

 

Keep Your Tools Handy

Get a plastic tote tray to carry with you from room to room. Load it with your cleaners, rags, rubber gloves, dusters and a couple of extra trash bags. You’ll be surprised at how much faster the cleaning goes when everything is right where you need it.

 

 

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