Tuesday, May 6, 2008

The Key to Getting My House Clean - Quickly & Efficiently

I'm sure you've received the following email at some point:

A.A.A.D.D. -Age Activated Attention Deficit Disorder.

This is how it manifests:

I decide to water my garden. As I turn on the hose in the driveway, I look over at my car and decide it needs washing. As I start toward the garage, I notice mail on the porch table that I brought up from the mail box earlier. I decide to go through the mail before I wash the car, etc., etc.

Well, I finally realized that is the way I've been cleaning my house! Here's the scenario: I pick up a sock in the living room to take to the laundry room. I get to the laundry room and realize some clothes need folding. After folding the clothes, I take them to my bedroom and realize I haven't made the bed yet. I make the bed and then start to the closet with the clothes. While walking through the bathroom to the closet, I see a glass that someone left in my bathroom that needs to be in the kitchen. I get to the kitchen and see some dishes that need to be put away. While doing this, I notice a book on the kitchen counter that needs to be in the living room. When I enter the living room, I realize that's where I was supposed to be in the first place.

After going through about four cycles of this, it's then time to start school or make breakfast or we have to be somewhere by a certain time. I end up leaving the house with every room half cleaned or picked up. Definitely not a good plan!

For a few weeks now, I've been trying to change my ways. It's been a little challenging, but it certainly works.

Here's the new scenario: I start picking up in the living room (there's always shoes, toys, etc. from the night before). I take everything to its proper place and make a special effort to not even look around in any other room I may be entering. I drop off the item, leave promptly, and return to the living room. While I'm finishing up this room, I'm thinking where I need to be next. I then enter the next room and do not touch anything on my way there. I keep going until every room I'm responsible for is taken care of.

This way works. It is much quicker, and the results are much more visible. Even if I'm running behind or we have to be somewhere and I don't get finished with every room, there are at least some rooms that have been completely taken care of, and that is a nice feeling.

On a similar note, I had posted several weeks/months ago about my desire to clean our home in a healthier way and to avoid a lot of those toxic cleaners. I'm glad to see that companies are offering more "green"-type cleaners that can easily be purchased at stores now (whereas in the past, mail order was about the only way to acquire these). But for the price, I can say that I have been extremely happy with my distilled white vinegar/water and baking soda for deep cleaning around my home. That's all I have been using since that last post, and I am completely satisfied. I've also been using the Basic H by Shaklee for basic cleaning and some dusting (I received my first bottle of this stuff in January or February of 2007, and I still have some left!! and I use it on a daily basis!) But when I'm needing something antibacterial, I definitely turn to the vinegar/water combo. It's great for cleaning the bathrooms. Both vinegar and baking soda are natural deodorizers, and my bathrooms are left with a fresh, clean smell. (Once the vinegar/water solution dries or evaporates, there is no lingering vinegar smell.) If I need some fragrance, I light a candle, and the candle is not competing with any other scents. Also, I had mentioned purchasing a dusting mit at Dollar General, and it has worked out wonderfully. It holds the dust and does not just move it around. When I'm finished, I throw it into the washing machine. I don't know how many times I've washed it (but it's been a lot), and it is still working.

We used to have a lot of allergy problems around here, especially my oldest, but I've really seen a difference these past few months. She could be outgrowing some of them, but I believe that getting rid of the toxic fumes has been a tremendous help.

Okay, I need to stop blogging now as it's time to go tackle the living room!


Anonymous said...

Just found your blog recently and do enjoy it. Tell me more about the vinegar/baking soda mix. I couldn't locate the article you originally posted about it. Thanks1

Rhonda said...

Here's the link to the post where I mentioned the link to the homemade cleaner recipes:


In a nutshell, what I did was purchase one of those plastic spray bottles from Dollar General. I fill it halfway with distilled white vinegar and then fill the other half with plain water. I give it a shake, and it's ready to go.

For bathroom cleaning, I sprinkle baking soda on the surface and then spray with the vinegar mixture. (I've been told this is also the recipe for making a volcano, but so far, there have been no eruptions around here!) After letting it sit for a few minutes, I scrub and rinse.

Thanks for asking!