5 Steps to Clutter-Bust and Tame the Stuff

It took me less than a week to fully unpack my house when we moved in a few months ago.  Seriously!  My secret?  I had already purged a TON of stuff the year before.  A year and a half ago we were preparing for our US RV Tour and had to go through each and every thing we owned.  Even our paper files.  That was hard!  We were downsizing like a crazy family to see what would fit in our 37 ft bunkhouse 5th wheel and what would fit in our 5 x 10 x 10 storage unit. 

I know most of you are not going to have that lifestyle choice pop up BUT I did learn quite a bit from that major purge.

5 steps to clutter bust 

Most of all, I love how much more simple life feels. 

There is less to take care of, less to clean and gives us more time as a family.  Before, I felt stressed with the visual clutter. 

Simple just feels more peaceful.

I followed 5 basic steps to clutter-bust and tame the stuff ::

1.  Empty

I went room by room, space by space. 

For example, when I worked in the bathroom, I did the cabinets together and then the drawers together. 

Completely empty the space of everything! This gives you a clean slate to work with.

 

2.  Clean

Now that it is clear you can clean the space.  Wipe it down, get rid of the dust and dirt. 

DSCN0009

 

3.  Sort

Now it’s time to deal the the stuff dumped on the floor in a pile.  Take the time to sort and downsize.  This is the time to decide how many rubber bands, shoes, tubes of toothpaste, tupperware…(you get the idea) you NEED. 

Make 3 piles : garbage, donate, keep. 

I did not completely purge my entire house at one time.  I actually went through everything twice in a year.  This allowed time to make decisions on items that I didn’t know the answer to.

 

The first time, if I could not decide right away that I wanted to get rid of it or keep it, then it went in the keep pile.

 

I found with the second purge, the decision was easier.

 

My son has cloth bins for his toys that go on the shelf.  For him, we dumped the bins and took one away.  Then we said the toys had to fit in those.  It was easier for him to make decisions on what to keep and what could go.

 

4.  Organize and Container-ize

Next, you need to organize the keep pile.  Put like items together in a way that makes sense for you.  I love using bins!  They go on sale often and are easy to store things away.  I put some of the toys in the closet to play with at special times.  I put seasonal clothes in bins.  The dollar tree has some great items as well!  I organized my entire bathroom with bins from there.

  iphone pictures 006

 

5. Reassemble

Time to put it all back.  Personally I love seeing SPACE between the stuff.  It brings me peace. lol

DSCN0001

 

Have you ever de-cluttered your entire house?  How did you do it?  Any new tips?

Here are a few of my favorite cleaning tips too!

 

marketed here ::

Family Home and Life

Someday Crafts

Spring Clean My House: the Bedroom

How is your spring cleaning going?

So far we have cleaned the kitchen and bathrooms

{ If you are just joining the Spring Clean My House Challenge, read this post first to catch up. }

This week we move on to the bedrooms!

Spring Clean My Bedroom

I don’t know about you, but mine seems to need a big dusting.  I try to keep up with it to keep the dust allergy on the down-low and this checklist always helps reduce it big time!

 

So grab your supplies and get ready to spring clean the bedrooms!  Start with a 15 min clean up.  Pick up stuff off the floor, clear off dresser and night stand so you can deep clean faster.  I love baskets to help contain stuff I need to go through later.

 

Spring Clean My Bedroom Checklist ::

* wash curtains

* strip/wash bedding and linens

* dust ceiling, walls, wall decor, baseboards, door frames, light fixtures

* dust and wipe down mini blinds

* clean window, tracks and window sill

* wipe down lamps and knickknacks

* wipe down furniture

* flip/rotate mattress

* vacuum/steam clean carpet

 

Ok.  We are ready to tackle it! 

 

Curtains + Bedding ::

Start by stripping the bed(s) and window treatments.  Have your kids help with this, especially in their room.  I do this first so I can get the massive laundry pile going while I clean the rest of the room. 

 

Dust ::

Grab your favorite duster (I like swiffer with the extended handle) and start at the top of the room.  Go around the ceiling, corners, walls, all the way down to the baseboards.  Move furniture out from the walls to get behind it.

 

Window ::

Wipe down the mini blinds if you have them.  Then wash the window, tracks and window sill.  I spray my natural all-purpose cleaner and even use q-tips to get in the track and remove the gunk.

 

*** check the laundry and get the next load in! ***

 

Furniture + Knickknacks ::

Again, I use the natural all-purpose spray and wipe down everything!  Remove stuff from furniture first to wipe down and then clean each item before you put it back.

 

*** check laundry and get the next load in! ***

 

Mattress ::

Vacuum the mattress before you flip it then do the other side.  It will help remove dust particles!

 

Floor ::

Vacuum the WHOLE room.  Move furniture to make sure you get it all.  Then take the time to mop or steam clean the carpet.

 

 

The last step is to put the furniture back, remake the bed, hang the curtains and get a good dust free sleep that night!

 

Check out these posts too ::

How to Clean Naturally

 

Join me on our facebook community and tell me how your cleaning is going 🙂

 

Happy Cleaning!

Claire

 

I use all natural cleaners because chemical based cleaners are harmful for the air inside your home and for your body.  They have been linked to autism, ADHD, allergies, asthma, and even cancers in young children; not to mention making you just plain feel sick with a headache. I don’t know about you but I’d rather not chance something as precious as my child’s life, so I use natural products that are safe and effective.

 

Email me at claireshealthyhome at gmail dot com to switch your home and family to natural cleaners, too.

 

my favorite cleaners

Linking up on these fabulous blogs ::

A Little Claireification

 

 

getcleanfloorswithshakleesbasich_thumb.jpg

How to Clean Wood Floors Safely

I think wood floors are beautiful!  We have laminate and I think it’s a great look for less.  In my cleaning business, however, one of the most asked questions I got (besides how to clean the shower) was how do I clean my wood floors safely and keep them shiny without residue?  I had many a client who was spending way too much money on product and yet they were still not satisfied. 

Here is what I do ::

1.  Sweep or vacuum to get rid of the daily living evidence.

2.  For daily [ish] upkeep, I use this microfiber mop. 

It’s the O’Cedar from Target.  Rubbermaid makes one too. 

Either is fine, but what you are looking for is the removable microfiber cloth and the refillable spray bottle. 

This thing is so worth the $20! 

It is easy to use (even my kids can), safe for your floors and super quick for spot cleaning.

1550

1565

3.  For deep cleaning, on your hands and knees is really the best way to get it super clean. 

Do as often as you can or make the kids.  lol 

I use a microfiber cloth and a spray bottle. 

Use water sparingly!

4.  Now, the part I know you are dying to know! 

What the heck do I use in the spray bottle?? 

There are so many as I shared earlier.  Believe me after 10 years as a house cleaning business owner and 16 years mom experience, I have tried MANY products.  Special order ones (expensive), Swiffer (BIG mistake), vinegar (smelly and doesn’t restore the wood floor shine) and just plain hot water (hard to clean dirt + again….does not restore the wood floor shine).

I use Shaklee’s Basic H organic cleaning concentrate. 

I switched over 2 years ago and it is hands down the best thing I have ever used on floors.

Take a look at what it can do for your floors.

get clean floors with shaklees basic h

Basic H is a cleaning concentrate.  I use the all-purpose formula on floors.

  It cleans the grime and makes the wood totally shine. 

Plus it’s natural and safe.  Safe for your babies crawling on the floor, children and pets.

Did I mention it is only 3 pennies to make a bottle of this stuff?

Now it’s your turn to get cleaning your floors! 

Do you have wood floors?  Laminate?  Tile?

How often do you clean your floors?

Happy Cleaning

Claire

Get my latest tips on Facebook

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How to clean your oven

I really dislike cleaning the oven.   It is gross, smelly and it usually takes the self clean which makes the house smell terrible or using super toxic cleaners.  So then my only option is to do it at night so my children don’t breath it, but then what about me?  I don’t want to breath it either.  As a result I wait too long and then it’s a hot mess!   So what do I do? 

I tried these to see how they stand up to my oven test.

how to clean the oven

Shaklee Basic H degreaser and Scour Off paste.

Just look at these yucky before pictures….

get clean oven before

get clean oven before 2

First I sprayed the entire inside of the oven with Shaklee’s Basic H degreaser and let it sit for 10 minutes. 

Then I used the Shaklee Scour Off paste and a wet (non scratch) sponge and went to work. 

Here is the after….

get clean oven after 2

get clean oven after

Amazing right?  It was easy and takes  a total of 20 min to clean it.  The trick was to use the degreaser first.  It helped break down the stuck on yuckiness before scrubbing with the paste.  No smell.  No toxins.  No need to clean at night and open windows.

Here it is again with the before and after. Can you see the difference?!

oven before and after 2

oven before and after

I love it.  A clean oven.

Here is a picture of a happy customer’s oven using Scour Off:

Now it’s your turn.  Do you dread the task as much as I did?  I was so happy to have it done and in less time than I thought!

To get your oven clean with these non-toxic, environmentally friendly and safe cleaners that work, go to my Shaklee website and get some today.

My favorite cleaning kit I recommend getting started with has everything you need:

Get Clean Healthy Home Pack

{ contact me at claireshealthyhome at gmail dot com before you order to get my special }

Happy Cleaning!

Claire

Marketing on these fabulous blogs:

Adorned from Above

Spring Clean My House: The Kitchen

The kitchen is the hub of the home wouldn’t you agree?  This is the first zone we will tackle and conquer in our Spring Clean My House challenge.  If you are just joining us, read this post first to catch up.  We are going to spring clean the kitchen so it will be a functioning, clean and healthy kitchen.  Pick a day of the week (or several) that work for you and go through the checklist.

 

Spring Clean My Kitchen

 

Spring Clean My Kitchen Checklist::

* dust { top to bottom. ceiling. corners. cabinets. walls. light fixtures }

* wipe down cabinets + backsplash

* clean oven and stovetop

* clean and shine sink

* clean the microwave

* wipe down countertops and backsplash

* clean dishwasher

* clean fridge – in and out

* sweep and mop floor and baseboards

 

To make this easy and simple, follow the checklist in order.  The natural flow of it will make the best use of your time and get you a sparkling clean kitchen in no time!  Let’s go through the checklist together….

** Begin with a quick kitchen clean up.  Put dirty dishes in the dishwasher and clear off the counters. **

1. Dust ::

Grab your duster and a stool and start at the top.  Dust the ceiling, corners, light fixtures tops of cabinets, the front of the cabinets, the top of the fridge, etc.  You get the idea.  This will go super quick!

 

2. Wipe down the cabinets ::

Grab your natural cleaner and microfiber cloths or paper towels and start spraying.  Be sure to get in the grooves of the cabinets.  We are deep cleaning and this is the time to do it.  If you need, grab a toothbrush to get in there. 

 

3.  Clean the oven ::

This is a good time to start your self-cleaning oven (if you have it).  When it’s done and after it’s cooled off, I go back and use a natural scouring paste to remove any gunk that didn’t burn off.  Paste it on and let sit for 20 min before wiping off.  Then I spray with my favorite natural all-purpose cleaner to remove the grime and get it shiny.

 

4.  Clean the stove top ::

While the oven is self-cleaning and/or the paste is sitting, we are ready to tackle the stove top.  Multi-tasking is the name of the game! These must be handled with care depending what your surface is made of.   Be sure you are using a safe product to avoid scratching.  Let your cleaner sit for about 15 minutes if the grunge is stuck on.  Gently scrub in circles with a microfiber cloth.  Wipe it clean.  Good as new again! 

 

5. Clean the microwave ::

Wipe down the outside and inside, including the turntable.  For stuck on grime, spray and let it sit for a few minutes.

 

6.  Clean the sink ::

Get your hot water on, a sponge and a good small scrub brush for this task.  Remember we are deep cleaning so this is the time to get the grime out around the edges of the sink and faucet.   Scrub good in all the little nooks and crannies around your faucet.  It is crazy what can live there?! Don’t forget the outer edge of the sink too.After the sink is scoured and scrubbed, you can clean out the garbage disposal by putting cut up lemons in it or pour baking soda down it and run HOT water over it.  It will be smelling fresh again and look shiny.

 

7.  Wipe down the countertops and backsplash ::

I spray down an area and move things stored on the counter as I go.  It seems to make it go pretty fast.  Get in those corners and edges to give it a good clean.

 

8. Clean the dishwasher ::

Wipe down the inside and remove any ‘gunk’ at the drain. Run it empty with a cup of vinegar sitting on the top rack. Wipe down the outside.

 

9.  Clean the fridge – in and out ::

Wipe down the top, sides and front.  Use a small scrub brush or toothbrush to deep clean the cracks and water dispenser.  For the inside, I like to go shelf by shelf.  Remove all the contents.  Throw out expired foods.  Wipe down the shelf and put the food back in.  Take the drawers out all the way to get them clean the best.

 

10.  Sweep and Mop the floor and baseboards ::

The best way to really clean your floor is on your hands and knees.  I only do this when I am deep cleaning.  For daily cleaning I use an O’Cedar Mop.  Don’t skip this last step.  You will be so glad to have your floor so clean.  This is the time to get in the cracks of the baseboards, get in the corners and even behind the fridge.

 

Other posts to check out  ::

How to clean the kitchen sink : Video

How to clean wood floors safely

How to clean the oven

 

The next step is to …..

Follow me on facebook and twitter (@clairesHH #springcleanmyhouse). 

Post a picture and share what you have cleaned.  I can’t wait to see!

New zone next week.

Happy Cleaning!

Claire

 

I use all natural cleaners because chemical based cleaners are harmful for the air inside your home and for your body.  They have been linked to autism, ADHD, allergies, asthma, and even cancers in young children; not to mention making you just plain feel sick with a headache. I don’t know about you but I’d rather not chance something as precious as my child’s life, so I use natural products that are safe and effective.

Email me at claireshealthyhome at gmail dot com to switch to all natural cleaners.

my favorite cleaners

Marketing on these blogs:

Life in a Break Down

One Project at a Time

 

springcleanmyhouse_thumb.jpg

Spring Clean My House: Get Ready!

I love spring time because the sun starts shining and flowers start popping up and it reminds me of a new start!  A new beginning and the chance to start fresh.  I like to jump on the feeling of motivation as quickly as possible (it could be gone quick!) and get started on cleaning my house.  A clean space and home is energizing and gives me a clear mind.

 

I hope you will join me on my newest challenge ::

Spring Clean My House

 

It will be Simple.

It will be Easy.

It will be Fun!

spring clean my house

 

{{ Be sure to get my Daily Cheat Sheet printable here. }} 

 

However, deep cleaning I do not do as regularly.  I would rather be playing with my kids, spending time with my hubby or you know…Starbucks and shopping.  Time to get it done and prepare the way for summer vacation with the margaritas kids.

 

Let’s get started! 

 

Here is the plan ::

::  We are starting April 8th and will be tackling one zone a week.

::  Each Monday I will post the zone and checklist for the work to be done during the week to sparklize (yes. it’s a made up word) your space.  Here are the zones we will conquer together…..

 

1. Kitchen

2. Bathroom

3. Bedrooms

4. Living/family room

 

::  Take a ton of before and after pictures to share with us on facebook, twitter, pinterest and instagram!

 

Here is the tools checklist ::

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

. duster {I use swiffer}

. microfiber cleaning cloths

. all-purpose natural cleaner {I use this one}

. safe disinfectant {I use this one}

. natural scouring cleanser {I use this one}

. paper towels

. garbage bags

. microfiber mop {I use the O’Cedar spray mist}

. small scrub brush {I use a toothbrush + OXO SoftWorks}

. broom

. vacuum

. carpet cleaner {borrow or rent if you don’t have one}

 

{{ Click HERE for a printable tools checklist }}

:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

 

If you want to use the same natural cleaners I do, go here to order 🙂 

 

ShakleeButton Get Clean

Read this too!  :: How I clean natural for pennies , How to Clean Natural

 

I am so excited for this!  It’s going to be FUN!

Leave me a comment to let me know you are spring cleaning with us.

 

See ya here Monday with the Kitchen Checklist!

xoxo,

Claire

p.s. email me at claireshealthyhome(at)gmail.com to get a Claire’s Healthy Home special!   

Marketing on these blogs:

Life in a Break Down

 

5 Steps to a Neat[er] House

I love a clean and neat house, BUT I do not like to spend all my time cleaning.  There are just too many other things to do in the day!  Here are 5 steps that I do try to do daily to keep a neat[er] house…

5 steps to a neater house

{ follow on facebook to find even more tips to Live.Real.Simple. }

 

1. Do one load of laundry every day.

I keep laundry baskets in each bedroom and one in the laundry room for dirty towels.  I do a load of laundry every morning when I wake up before I get breakfast for the kids.  By the time we are ready for school, the laundry is ready for the dryer.  Laundry is one of those never ending tasks!  But this really helps keep it under control and it keeps me from feeling like I should always be doing laundry.

2. Load dirty dishes right away.

The dishes are my least favorite chore.  Ugh! So to keep it as easy as possible, I have my boys do it.  lol  I run the dishwasher at night so after I put in the laundry, it is ready to unload.  That way we can all load our dirty dishes during the day.  We purpose to eat dinner together every evening and the boys take turns on cleaning up.  The dishwasher is usually pretty full at that point and ready to run.

3. Wipe down daily [toilet, sinks, countertops]

I keep cleaning supplies in each bathroom and in the kitchen so it is easily available to use.  The kitchen gets wiped down usually after each meal time.  Just a quick spray from my favorite organic all purpose cleaner and wipe it down.  In the bathrooms I keep a spray bottle of disinfectant.  That way when I am in there, I can spray and wipe the toilet and sink super quick to cut down on heavy cleaning.  I just use toilet paper to wipe and flush away.  I am still training the kids to do this too and that is a big help.

4. Give each family member a basket.

I got baskets for each of the boys that fit on the stairs going up to their bedrooms and throughout the day I put their things in there as I find them around the house.  I love it!  I try to have them empty it each day and it really cuts down on the clutter.  Also, I gave my hubby and me a basket to collect mail, papers, little things and it works great, too.

5. Have a daily 15 minute family pick up.

Before dinner we usually have a quick pick up time that everyone helps with.  With 5 of us, it is amazing what you can get done!  Each person is responsible for their own clutter plus I give the kids a ‘zone’ or room of the house to be in charge of tidying up too.  We all live here and we all take care of it! … at least that’s what I keep repeating to the kids when they grumble.  lol

And then I have more time for this….

IMG_1589[1]

Do you have any tips that work for you? 

claire

psst…check out my favorite organic cleaners

get clean pin

Marketing on these Fabulous blogs:

High Heels & Grills

Crystal & Co.

showerfloorafter_thumb.jpg

Remove Soap Scum Residue from the Shower Floor

Yuck!  This is so gross, I cannot believe I am showing this to you. 

My shower floor looked like this waaaay too long!  Before I knew better, I sprayed every kind of chemical on this junk to get my floor white and it did nothing.  Blah!  [no judging pretty please]

shower floor before

Isn’t that gross?!  I was so fed up with it I wanted a whole new shower.

So when I got my Scour Off this was what I could not wait to use it on.

2010 09 06_8861

Here is what I did to remove the nasty soap residue from the shower floor naturally.

1.  Scrub the Scour Off paste on with water and a stiff brush.  Scrub in circles and enjoy the fragrance.  This stuff is a concentrate so just a little goes a long way.  It is non-toxic and smells like cherries.  For real!

2.  Let it sit for 30 minutes.

3.  Scrub again with the stiff brush.  Add more scour off if needed.  My soap scum residue was pretty bad.  You saw the picture!  So I needed some elbow grease with the brush and plenty of scour off.  But check out my after picture!  It was totally worth it.

4.  Rinse with water.

5.  Repeat if necessary.  My soap scum residue was pretty bad. You saw the picture! So I needed some elbow grease with the brush and plenty of scour off. But check out my after picture! It was totally worth it.

shower floor2

shower floor after

Can you believe that?!  It is so white!  In fact, the whole shower looks way brighter because the floor is finally clean.

To get your shower this clean, order here.  Be sure to take pictures and email me so I can rejoice with you!

Check out House Cleaning 101 for more cleaning tips.

claire

messytotidy

supersofthair.jpg

Super Soft, Shiny + Healthy Hair

Do you have dry hair or scalp?

Try this to get super soft, shiny + healthy hair.

I was noticing that mine was getting dry this winter and I needed to do something about it.  

I didn’t have the time or want to spend the money to go to the salon and get a treatment so I made my own and it turned out amazing!

 

I heard of coconut oil working like magic so I thought I would try it out.

I had coconut oil in the cupboard so I got it out and spooned some in my hand and started applying it all over my hair. 

I massaged it in and put it in a pony tail.

Then, I let it sit for about 30 min. and did the dishes while I waited.  I’m always multi-tasking.

After that, I took a shower and washed and conditioned it twice.

I could tell instantly that my hair was smoother.  I dried and styled my hair as usual and notice my hair was extremely soft, my scalp was not dry and my hair was shiny.

super soft hair

I’m actually really pleased with how it turned out and as a result will probably do this every couple of weeks during the winter because my hair feels so good!

Have you ever tried something like this?

Did you use coconut oil?

How did you like it?

claire

facebook

I

IMG_03671.jpg

How I Clean Natural for Pennies

Owning a house cleaning business taught me a few things.  One of those was the less I paid for my supplies, the more profit I received!  That was definitely a motivator for me as well as getting the job done well AND efficiently.

Remember my story on why and how I switched to natural cleaning products?  I still cannot believe the harmful stuff I was using and exposing myself too!

This is a picture of my old cleaning bucket.  Any of it look familiar?  You most likely have these in your home too.  I thought I needed ALL these for the many jobs that come from keeping a house clean. 

toxic cleaners

I went from this full bucket to just 3 products to clean everything…..bathroom, kitchen, dusting, floors, disinfecting, everything!

shaklee 3 products

Because each one is a concentrate, it lasts a looooong time.

Here is an example of how I clean natural for pennies with just the Basic H.

IMG_0367[1]

Can you believe those numbers???

I used to think the Dollar Store was such a bargain too, but when you break down the cost,

look at how you can clean for pennies!

You can order yours here and start saving a ton of money too.

Basic H

basic h 2

The bonus is Basic H has sooo many other uses besides cleaning the house!

Here are just a few other ways I use basic H

wash the car

natural fruit and veggie wash

wash the dog (natural flea deterrent)

take a bubble bath (the kids and me!)

remove wallpaper

laundry stain remover

basic h is safe

Scour Off

scour off heavy duty paste

scour off is safe

Basic G

basic g

basic g sheet

I am offering a special to ALL new members so be sure to contact me before you order so I can save you even more money!

claireshealthyhome(@)gmail dot com

Have a great day!

Claire

Follow me on

blog facebook

blog pinterest