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Cleaning and Organizing Tips and tricks to get your home and all within it sparkling clean and neat as a pin.

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Old 11-11-2012, 05:55 PM   #1
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Default Holiday Cleaning

Its that time of the year and we've got a houseload of guests coming for Thanksgiving. Our cleaning plan is to start with the stuff that rarely gets cleaned and work our way down to the regular everyday cleaning jobs. Today we cleaned the oven, what a mess. After we took Sue's advice on getting rid of the loose and flakeable stuff we sprayed it down with oven cleaner, gave it plenty of time to work then used half sheets of newspaper to clean most of the gunk out. Max did most of the work. He's such a nice guy! I was technical support and made sure the gunk bag was handy, the newspaper sheets were right at hand and the rinse water stayed clean. Tag teaming really helped out. Its soo much better. Tomorrow we'll start on other things but right now we just got a call from a neighbor and we're off to process a deer (we get half for doing the job). Later Taters!
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Old 11-11-2012, 06:00 PM   #2
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I LOATHE cleaning ovens & I love your system. With 1 person making sure there's plenty of clen rinse water, trash bags & extra newspaper around, it really speeds up the process.

Enjoy the venison!
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Old 11-11-2012, 06:08 PM   #3
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Our electric oven has a throw away aluminum pan the size of the oven, placed under the bottom element.

Last edited by US Blues; 11-11-2012 at 06:11 PM. Reason: add Aluminum
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Old 11-11-2012, 06:58 PM   #4
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Our electric oven has a throw away aluminum pan the size of the oven, placed under the bottom element.
Mine two. Gets rid of all the big stuff, then the self clean takes care of the thin stuff on the sides. Quick wipe the next day and its done. If it wasn't self cleaning, the aluminum bottom pan is a must.
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Old 11-11-2012, 08:21 PM   #5
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I've seen those pans before and I'll look for one. These ovens are double wall ovens and the top one is very hard for me to clean, its just too much of a reach.

The deer is a nice one. Its bled, gutted, skinned and hung. Tonights low is 34 and its raining. Perfect for an overnight hang. Tomorrow we'll finish the job.
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Old 11-16-2012, 09:24 PM   #6
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Holiday cleaning? Just go to someone else's house for the holiday.
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Old 11-17-2012, 12:40 AM   #7
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Don't have company, no need to do that kind of cleaning.
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Old 11-17-2012, 01:14 AM   #8
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Company often serves as a spur to do long neglected cleaning. Look - cleaning sucks; I don't know anyone who really LIKES to clean although I think we like the results. We have 3 adults & 3 aging cats who make indescribable messes in an apartment measuring 693 feet. It doesn't take much to make it look messy!

We've trained ourselves to be neat - even when we feel it's going to kill us. Every time we come in from anywhere, we don't permit ourselves to relax until everything associated with the outing is put away, cleaned or otherwise properly dealt with. If we didn't, within 2 days we wouldn't be able to move in here. We're onstantly fighting skirmishes against clutter & dust. This is, I swear, the dustiest place I've ever lived in. We live within a mile of a 'temporary' gravel quarry, 1.5 miles from extensive & messy roadwork & 500 yards from a never ending condo construction site - can't win. If Imiss a day of dusting, it looks as though, (in normal places), no one has dusted in a month. So I snarl & dust daily.

Three in the bathroom means it needs cleaning at least every 48 hours - blech! But I despise a dirty bathroom & with very hard water, if I don't clean tile every fe days, I might as well buy a sandblaster.

Clutter - groan. We have few available surfaces for anything so mail is dealt with immediately & junk mail never makes it up to our place. I loathe filing but force myself to do it every 2 weeks. Cupbords & closets are gone through often - I prefer to do that when I've got a mad on - that way I'm more inclined to eliminate stuff I don't need. I have to control myself with collecting & so does SO.

The kitchen has roughly 5 sq. feet of counter space - it must be kept clear or the kitchen looks like a disaster.

Ovens - I'd rather clean bathrooms in 10 nasty taverns after a Superbowl weekend than do one oven. We use aluminum foil & change it out often. Any spots on the enamel get dealt with as soon as I see them. Hint for anyone with mobility issues - get a car windshield scraper - if you can't easily bend & reach, they work great for scraping out nasties after they've been sprayed with oven cleaner. You can then wrap a rag or paper towel & lossely fasten them on with elastics to wipe off excess cleaner.

We've got white kitchen appliances - not as bad as it sounds - I hate stainless & black shows marks. White means you notice quickly when things are a bit grubby & can deal before you're stuck really scrubbing & scraping. I have a bad habit of opening the fridge to get cold drinks when I';gardening - so I'm the worst offender when it comes to grubby finger prints on the fridge door handle. After we do supper dishes, we wipe down the fridge & stove top & sides if need be & once a week, I wipe down cupboard faces - a 15 minute job that saves loads of time.

But yeah - if anyone ever develops an 'anticlutter vaccine' - sign me up!
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Old 11-17-2012, 02:28 AM   #9
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I always get some great tips reading the cleaning comments. I know when we get a place to live it's going to be very small as rentals are sky high, and space is at a premium. My husband is a mini hoarder, (though very organized) so I always have to sneak and throw stuff.. Fortunately, we arrived here with only 2 suitcases so we can start clean!
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Old 11-17-2012, 09:25 PM   #10
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A friend gave me a great tip on cleaning the bathroom. She has four little ones so she has baby wipes tucked in almost ever room in the house. After the kids are asleep she takes a baby wipe and wipes down the toilet, the floor around the toilet and the sink. With three little boys the floor needs it every day. I've tried her method and it works. It really helpes clean up after DH when he misses the toilet. I also use the wipes on the counter I tiled next to the sink.
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Old 11-17-2012, 09:35 PM   #11
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That's a great trick - the wipes. They'll pick up & hold a ton of 'bits & dust' - trhe kind of crap that so annoyingly gets between the toilet seat parts that's a dog to get out.

Generic wipes can be bought in large quantities at a lot of discount stores too!
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Old 11-17-2012, 10:33 PM   #12
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I picked up a big pile of $1.99 floor mats at Ikea. They are thin... more like a placemat than a bathroom mat. I put one in front of every toilet, and I gather them all up every morning and toss them in the washing machine. Baby wipes or clorox or lysol wipes are good for the hinge areas on the seat (I want to kill the idiot who designed toilet seats like that. Bet he never had to clean one.) and the swirlygig area where the bowl screws to the floor. But I like the swiffer wet mop for the floor because I don't have to crawl on my hands and knees to reach behind the toilet and the wet mop can get in close to the base.
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Old 11-18-2012, 12:17 AM   #13
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To do the floor I just drop the wipe on the floor and move it around with my foot. Then I use my extension grabber thing to pick them up. I'm not touching anything off the floor around the toilet. DH needs his eyes checked, he's a little off to one side and leaves a trail.
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Old 11-18-2012, 01:51 AM   #14
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I use Windex and paper towels on all parts of the toilet, only bowl cleaner on the inside. I'm blessed to only have one male in the house, so no drips on the floor. If he does, he must be cleaning up after himself the last 19 years.

If anyone has a cure for a 14 yr old that doesn't rinse the sink after brushing her teeth, please let me know.
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Old 11-18-2012, 02:47 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Feather View Post
A friend gave me a great tip on cleaning the bathroom. She has four little ones so she has baby wipes tucked in almost ever room in the house. After the kids are asleep she takes a baby wipe and wipes down the toilet, the floor around the toilet and the sink. With three little boys the floor needs it every day. I've tried her method and it works. It really helpes clean up after DH when he misses the toilet. I also use the wipes on the counter I tiled next to the sink.
Wow I have wipe misses myself.
Ms. Pote insists.

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Old 11-18-2012, 08:15 AM   #16
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It's not the adults, Pote.. unless they have a physical or mental problem.. but little boys.
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Old 11-18-2012, 11:03 AM   #17
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Quote:
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Hint for anyone with mobility issues - get a car windshield scraper - if you can't easily bend & reach, they work great for scraping out nasties after they've been sprayed with oven cleaner. You can then wrap a rag or paper towel & lossely fasten them on with elastics to wipe off excess cleaner.
Thank You, Sue!!! We already have an extra one in the truck and I'm going to bring it inside today and find it a place to live under the kitchen sink. I hate ovens, too.
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Old 11-18-2012, 11:20 AM   #18
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You can make wipes very easily and you can change the "flavor" depending on your needs:

Cut a roll of Bounty or Brawny paper towels in half cross-wise. I like to use the Bounty Select-a-Size. Brush off the cling-ons on the cut side but don't get too anal about it. Put the half roll cut side down into an appropriate sized container that has a good lid. In the container you've mixed up your solution, about 2 cups worth:

For travel/baby wipes use a good squirt of baby bath soap and plain water

For sanitizing had wipes use rubbing alcohol and water

For bathroom wipes use a tablespoon of bleach, a tablespoon of vinegar and water

For glass cleaner use a quarter cup of white vinegar, a half cup of rubbing alcohol, a drop or 3 of dishwashing liquid and 1 1/4 cup of water.

Be sure to mix your solution well before putting the paper towel roll in. Let the roll sit for an hour or so then pull the soaked cardboard core out. Pull the moistened towels out of the center. If its a container you will use often you can cut a hole in the lid and pull the towels through that. Be sure to clearly mark the contents of your container.
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Old 01-05-2013, 03:31 AM   #19
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I keep a jug of Fantastic spray cleaner and a roll of paper towels in the cupboards next to the toilet. I have to keep mine really clean. The dog loves to go in there and have a drink.. I love the clean smell of Fantastic.
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Old 01-05-2013, 09:10 PM   #20
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Christmas season officially ended today, at out house. What seemed to take days to decorate, and primp and prime took DH about 15 minutes to pick up, pack, and put away. Whoosh, that was that. The cat got up from his nap to go take his other nap under the tree and it was gone. The look on his face was priceless ! He walked over to where it was had a sniff and walked away depressed. Haven't seen him since, must be dreaming of his tree. House is clean and sorta missing something, ya know?
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Old 01-06-2013, 03:25 AM   #21
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I would really rather not take down the tree this year. Our tree still looks good, and after having to work through Christmas, and then getting so sick, I feel I haven't had enough Christmas this year. Tomorrow is the Christmas tree pick-up from the garbage company though, so it must be done today.
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Old 01-06-2013, 12:38 PM   #22
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We took ours down Friday. It took all of 40 minutes to get everything boxed up. I rather like this lean decorating concept, less is more, and all that.
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Old 01-06-2013, 03:25 PM   #23
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I had really hoped to get all the decorations down this week, but with having the flu, I just don't have the energy to do it all. I'm hoping we can at least get the tree down today -- we did minimal decorating on it, just ornaments with no bead or tinsel garlands, so it's just a matter of getting the ornaments off and packed up, then getting the tree into 3 pieces and back into the box. Should be easy, but everything seems like such a chore right now, especially when it involves going up and down 17 steps to get items into/out of storage.

Going on 6 days sick -- after a while, you forget what being completely well feels like!
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Old 01-06-2013, 06:40 PM   #24
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The joys of having an ultra tiny tree. I just pick it up and slide it in the box. No fuss no muss and I am undecorated.
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Old 01-06-2013, 08:19 PM   #25
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D.Gale, I hope you are feeling better soon..

I just started de-Christmasing. Im a little over the top decorating so this is going to take a while. I'm off work until Wednesday so Im taking my time and really condensing. I have a bunch of stuff I want to get rid of, so this is a good time. Right now I have 7 big Rubbermade bins lined up ready to load...Its not too bad really, Every bin is labeled, so everything has a home. Tree decorations, kitchen, entranceway, fireplace etc...I take it down, fold, wrap etc. and into the bin it goes. When I'm finished my DS will put them all away for me. I didn't pull everything out this year. I'm glad of that now.

After everything is down, I'm cleaning.
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