How are you at keeping house? When I was little, watching episodes of Martha Stewart and reading every lifestyle magazine I could get my hands on, I dreamed of what a fabulous housekeeper I’d be. But 6 years into home-ownership, I’ve realized that scrubbing floors and doing the laundry is not nearly as glamorous as I’d thought it would be. Then, last week I was talking with a friend about the guilt that can come along with cleaning (or not cleaning) the house. We both work for one of the top lifestyle brands in the country, and yet our reality is that we don’t scrub our baseboards monthly or even always pick up after ourselves.
So, after getting a few questions on the subject, I thought it was time to get super real on the blog. We’re going to talk about cleaning house–top to bottom. Tips, tricks, and ways to deal with the inevitable guilt that comes from not spending your Saturday scrubbing that bathroom floor by hand like Martha would. For this first post, I thought I’d share the 5 things that are always in my cleaning closet.
I feel like Dexter and I shed the equivalent of a small kitten every day so the Swiffer is essentail in our house. It’s not a hassle to deal with like the vacuum so you can do it every day or two and save vacuuming for the weekends. I also use the cloths for dusting the rest of the house.
This stuff is simply amazing. Add a bit to water and scrub down anything. It’s powerful enough to remove the greasy film that builds up on that wall above the stove, but it’s gentle enough to mop wood floors and bath the dog. I also used it as a face wash for a while. Husband claims I like the peppermint scent because it makes the house smell like Christmas, which I’m sure, on some level, is true.
Cloth Towels & Rags
I went through a phase where I was using paper towels for everything. Don’t get me wrong, I adore Bounty on a weird, I-ONLY-buy-Bounty sort of level, but using paper towels for everything gets expensive and wasteful. So I stocked up on cloth rags and towels and try to use those as much as possible. Just remember to have enough on hand so you can change them out every day or two so germs don’t live in them.
We’ve been a Method household since college when we attended a lecture by Karim Rashid and learned about Method’s great design & environmental practices. My latest love has been for their furniture polish–it works wonders on our antiques and smells divine!
While I’m not a huge fan of using harsh chemicals, I do understand that sometimes you need a stronger cleaner. I use it disinfect after someone’s been sick or when we buy something old for the kitchen that makes me a little nervous (think things with small enclosures).