I know that on February 3rd Punxsutawney Phil predicted 6 more weeks of winter. It was reported that shortly afterwards, one member of Phil’s inner circle shared a message from Phil: “After winter, you’re looking forward to one of the most beautiful and brightest springs you’ve ever seen.”
Well, looking out my front window it’s a little hard to believe Phil. But as winter starts to fade away, or at least I’m beginning to start feeling hopeful about what’s to come once it truly does, my mind starts turning to thoughts of the upcoming yearly “big spring clean”.
Spring cleaning is a tradition that allows us to freshen up our homes and get a head start on the often hectic seasons of spring and summer – and it can feel like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be difficult.
Here are several cleaning tips to help you get started thinking along those lines.
Approaching your house room-by-room is the most effective way to deep clean it. Create cleaning checklists for each room and feel free to skip the areas that have been cleaned recently. Focus on the parts of your home that were largely neglected over the winter.
Establish New Cleaning Habits
A thorough spring cleaning that covers the whole house is a great opportunity to establish ongoing cleaning habits, which can make the next spring cleaning even easier.
- Don’t try to do all of your spring cleaning in one day or even one weekend. You’ll drive yourself into a tizzy!
- Tackle items on your spring cleaning to-do list for just 15 minutes each day. That will help to get you in the habit of tidying up for 10 to 15 minutes per day even after you’re done with your spring cleaning tasks.
Organize and Clear the Clutter
Identify problem areas (i.e., a closet or two, perhaps) and analyze the reasons for the clutter. Once you’ve identified the reasons, determine solutions needed and implement these remedies.
Sort your belongings into four categories (trash, give away, store, or put away), and move the clutter out as soon as possible. Decide whether it’s bringing a donation box to a charity or planning a yard sale.
Get the Household Involved!
Make spring cleaning a household endeavor. Even young children can be excellent helpers. Assign age-appropriate chores, so everyone feels included. Put some music on as you all clean and, if young children are involved, establish a household reward as an incentive to get the work done.
Tackle Seasonal Chores
As soon as the weather warms up a bit, you might want to tackle outdoor chores, such as cleaning the grill, patio and furniture, and outsides of windows. You can also store winter clothing, bedding, decor, and other items, while you pull out your spring items to give your home a refreshed look.
Keep Cleaning Products to a Minimum
If you need to shop for new cleaning products for spring cleaning, keep your items to a minimum. Opt for a good all-purpose cleaner and microfiber cloths. Do your best to limit the use of harsh cleaning or disinfectant products, such as bleach and ammonia (never mix the two!).
Remember to always follow the label instructions; open windows or a door and, if possible, run a fan to help air circulate; wear rubber gloves when using some household cleaners. When you’re cleaning floors, avoid working on your hands and knees, which could cause sprains and strains. Use a mop instead, including when you’re cleaning a bathtub.
Additional Items to Consider
Here are other items that sometimes are forgotten but should be incorporated into your cleaning checklists for each room. Of course, this list isn’t all-inclusive:
- Ceiling fans
- Fridge and freezer
- Washing machine and dryer
- Oven, stove top, and burners
- Cutting boards
- Kitchen cabinets and hardware
- Stainless steel appliances
- Junk drawer(s)
- Shower curtains
- Makeup cabinet and makeup brushes
- Shower drain
- Ceiling Fixtures
- Kids’ toys
- Phone and other electronics
- Vacuum and brooms
- Etc, etc.