The ul­ti­mate spring clean starts now

Central Otago Mirror - - FRONT PAGE -

Re­cent warmer weather has prompted many of us to con­tem­plate that old ch­est­nut – the an­nual spring clean.

It is a ques­tion of do­ing a won­der­ful job, but as smoothly and ef­fi­ciently as pos­si­ble. It seems like a PLAN is needed.

Al­lot a spe­cific day to start, so that noth­ing in­trudes. Be flex­i­ble – you don’t want to be clean­ing on a wet, mis­er­able day. You need the win­dows open and a warm breeze com­ing in. Did we say ‘‘day’’? Break the tasks up, so that you give one area a re­ally good hit.

Once done, en­joy the ac­com­plish­ment, and set a date for the next one. Make an in­ven­tory of your clean­ing sup­plies. A week be­fore you’re due to start, think about every­thing you will need to get your liv­ing ar­eas back into peak con­di­tion.

If you are run­ning low on a par­tic­u­lar clean­ing prod­uct, now is the time to buy in some more – re­stock your sup­plies of rub­ber gloves, cloths, sponge scrub­bers, and black plas­tic bags, too.

Make a list of spring clean­ing goals. Think about what you need to pri­ori­tise this year – what do you want to get out of your spring clean? Run­ning out of space for books? Then one of your goals should be, ‘‘Clear space for more books in the of­fice.’’

Re­or­gan­is­ing rooms and de­clut­ter­ing them be­fore you start is a good idea, as dust and dirt will in­evitably get whipped up when you move items from room to room. Sort all your ‘mis­cel­la­neous’ items into three boxes: ‘To keep’, ‘To get rid of’, and ‘Un­de­cided’. Then find ap­pro­pri­ate places for the items you want to keep. Con­sider do­nat­ing your un­wanted items to char­ity, sell­ing them on­line, or re­cy­cling them. For those items you are un­sure about, put them in the box and store it away for six months. If you need to break back into the box to re­claim an item, it means you need it. If, af­ter six months, you haven’t touched any of the items, they can safely be given away. And yes, that ap­plies to clothes as well.

Search the in­ter­net for fun, healthy clean­ing meth­ods, and try them out. Scrub the in­side of that smelly mi­crowave with a cut lemon and salt. Make ap­pli­ances shine with cream of tar­tar mixed with wa­ter into a paste.

In­stead of scrub­bing your shower head, fill a sand­wich bag with vine­gar and tie it on to your shower head overnight.

Can’t get to the bot­tom of a vase? Try mix­ing rice and soapy wa­ter, and shake well.

Get rid of pet hair by putting on rub­ber gloves and rub­bing your hands over fur­ni­ture and car­pet. Then dip your hands in wa­ter and watch it all float off.

It just takes a plan – a lit­tle re­search, some ex­per­i­ment­ing, and even a lit­tle fun.

And don’t for­get the rest of the fam­ily. They live there too, don’t they?

Think of that old joke about the Dutch elec­tri­cians’ motto – many Hans make light work!


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