House Cleaning 101: My Favorite Tools

Welcome back!  I am so glad you came to visit.  Be sure to subscribe to my newsletter for even more tips.  Then join our Facebook community.

This post is one of a 4 part series.

Go HERE to read #1. Routine ….. if you missed it.

Today we are on #2. Tools 

I have several favorite cleaning tools that I use.  Over my past 8 + years in the house cleaning business, I have tried A LOT of different tools and these are the result of that.  These are officially my most favorite to clean simple and quick!

Swiffer Duster

This is a must have tool!  Be sure to get the extended handle one.  You will not be sorry to pay the extra for it.  It can reach up really high without climbing on chairs or step stools.  I can go around a room super fast with this.  I personally use the cloth a lot of times before I need a refill.  If you want to save money with this part, I have seen some blogs that have made their own refills out of microfiber and can then rewash it.  Make sure you get a good quality microfiber cloth.

swiffer duster

My favorite small brush is this by OXO SoftWorks.  It works great on small areas like the sink.  It has a good stiff bristle that makes cleaning go faster and more efficient.  I used it on this shower floor.

small scrub brush

I keep a sqeegee in my shower to wipe off the glass door after every shower.  This is a good step to get in a habit of doing because it saves scrubbing time later.  Any brand will do…I just took a picture of this one.

squeegee

Next up are the microfiber cleaning clothes and sponges I use.  If you use a good quality material, it will save loads of time!  With these ones I have NO streaking.  Very important for cleaning it once.  It is a waste of time (not to mention frustrating) when you have to go over and over your mirror or surface because of streak marks.  These ones soak up a lot of moisture too which makes it last longer since I dry clean often.  The sponge is machine washable as well and the green ones are for my tough jobs like soap scum that has been on forever.  Get these if you are having trouble with your shower or tub.  They will do the job, trust me.

cloths and sponges

I use concentrated cleaning products to save money (more on that later) so I need spray bottles to mix it up in.  These are my most favorite ( and I have been through A LOT) spray bottles.  Why?  Because it has a quality spray nozzle.  It sprays a nice mist.  You may think this is not important, but I have found it to help my job go so much faster and efficient.  Plus, look how cute they are?  Who doesn’t love cute stuff?  I like that it is pretty enough to keep out and look nice.

spray bottles

Now on to the floors!  I bought this O Cedar spray mist mop at Target for a great price and it is so easy to use.  Love it!  I have been through a lot of mops before I found this one.  It comes with a refillable bottle so you can put your own cleaner in and the microfiber cloth attaches with velcro.  You can buy more pads AND they are machine washable.  The spray button is on the handle.  This is so easy to use, my kids can do it.  Bonus!  Also great for just spot cleaning for when you don’t have time to do the whole floor.

Confession:  I actually rarely have time (or desire) to really deep clean my floors.  Instead, I use this mop to do it fast.

favorite mop

So there you have it!  My secret cleaning tools revealed.  I used these in my business as well as in my own home.  What do you think?  Do you use these already?  See any that you want to try?

Be sure to come back for Part 3: Products

Happy Cleaning,

Claire

**I was not perked or paid for the review of any of these tools.  I just happen to love them, however, if any of these companies want to thank me for the free advertising for their products, I would welcome it. LOL**

earth day shaklee

House Cleaning 101: Routine

Ever wonder how professional house cleaners get in and out so quick and efficient?

I owned and operated my own house cleaning business for over 10 years and I picked up

a few tips and tricks along the way.  Lucky you…I am going to spill it all! 

Since there is so much information this will be a 4 part series.

house cleaning 101 

1.  Routine

2. Tools

3. Products

4. Schedule

So today I will share my cleaning routine to keep it fast and easy! 

I am a busy mom of 3 boys and I work at home.  So, just like you, finding the time (and the desire)

to clean my house is a challenge. 

Confession:  I actually do NOT like to clean!  :0 

This may sound strange since this was my business for 8 + years, but it is not my favorite thing to do.  However, I am good at it and I will say it is much easier to clean other peoples’ homes than mine.  In my own home, I get sidetracked easily by other projects that get in the way of my actually cleaning, therefore making it longer. 

Does this happen to any of you? 

The other obvious reason is at a clients’ home, there are no children, husbands or other people to get in my way for the next 3 hours.  As a mom, I am sure you can dream along with me of all the possibilities of 3 hours alone to get your work done!  Pure heaven. This is the part I loved about my business.  Time alone to actually complete a task and then walk away.  Satisfaction.

Here is the routine I use when tackling a cleaning job or task.

1. Start in the bathroom

Why?  Because I like to get the toughest job done first while I have my energy to do the best job.  Plus it’s my least favorite. Yuck!

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I showed you HERE how I clean the shower.

2.  Clean top to bottom

This means I dust first from the ceiling down.  That way the dust falls to the floor which is the last part I clean including vacuuming.

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I showed you HERE how to clean your tv safely.

3. Use as little water as possible.

cloths and sponges

I spray and wipe down/clean with lots of microfiber cleaning cloths.  Trust me. 

This will save you loads of time! 

I spray and wipe down as I go around each room.  Not only is this quick, but it is more sanitary.  Water just moves the germs around. 

Plus when it dries it leaves water spots.  Cleaning dry will give everything a nice shine.

4. Move knickknacks one at a time.

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I spray on the counter/shelf next to it, then use one hand to wipe with my cloth and the other to pick up each item as I go. 

Much faster than clearing it all once and then putting back.

That’s it!  Just 4 steps for a quick routine. 

For those of us who actually live in our homes Winking smile, we know that there are a few things that get in the way of quick cleaning.  Stuff (clutter, toys, paper) and people.  If this is running your household, try getting rid of some stuff.  Seriously, the less you own, the easier it is to clean.  As for people, well…don’t get rid of them! 

But we will talk about family in the schedule post. 

I am so excited for you all to try these few simple steps to getting your house under control. 

I would love and welcome any of your house cleaning tips, too!  Please share in the comments!

Join our Facebook community HERE where I share even more cleaning tips.

Happy cleaning!

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get clean starter kit

 

 

 

PS.  Do you have my daily Cheat Sheet Yet???

 

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Tips for the WAHM ~ work at home mom

I love being a work at home mom (WAHM)!  My business allows me to set my own hours around

my family’s schedule which is my first priority.  However, I actually struggled with this role a bit. 

Until I set a few boundaries, I felt the need to work all the time.  So stressful and not efficient! 

These are the tips I have gleaned to separate my home and work life and create a more peaceful,

efficient, and productive business.

1. Create a schedule. 

And stick.to.it.  I look at my week to determine how many hours and when I would work then block it in. 

I only change it if something comes up with the kids that I need to be available for, but not if I have a

friend who wants to meet for coffee.  I do that during other hours.  I also schedule hours that are for family only. 

I turn off the computer and give them my attention.This will greatly decrease the mom guilt! 

2.  Determine your work space.

Some are blessed with a home office.  I am not, so the kitchen table gets transformed. 

I keep a bag that I lovingly refer to as my ‘portable office’.  My most favorite place to work is at the coffee shop! 

I find that if I am at home I am tempted to do other things like housework.  Going somewhere else eliminates those distractions.

work at home mom portable office

3.  Keep a list of business activities that need to be done.

I keep a notebook for this because if you are like me, I remember things at strange times and then forget them. 

So writing it down is key!  Then when it is ‘work time’ I know what I am supposed to be working on.

4.  Dress for success

Dressing in sweats with my hair in a messy bun daily makes me feel sloppy, sleepy and less motivated. 

It really is amazing how a good hair day with cute clothes on makes a difference in how I feel and my attitude. 

Try it and watch it happen for you, too!

SayNOtoMessyBuns

5.  Be flexible.

As I write this, I am working.  But my kids are also on Spring Break.  Since Friday is my regular work time,

I just took the kids to an indoor jungle gym with wi-fi.

To me, this really is the best part about being a WAHM.  So cool!

These are tips that I am always working on to stay on track.

Give a shout out if you are a work-at-home mom, too.

I would love to hear any tips you have! 

Looking forward to your next visit,

Claire

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***Messy Bun photo credit to Katie Brockmeyer.  Thanks girl!***

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Mail Order: 3 Easy Steps

mail order

I am at constant war with my abundance of incoming paper flow.  

Here are 3 steps that I did to help reduce it.

1.  Eliminate

We use online bill pay and got rid of hard copy statements as much as possible.

You can also reduce junk mail clutter through an opt-out at directmail.com

2.  Manage

Design a station that works and then use it.

I seem to always be looking for ways to improve this!

Currently, I am using an open file box with folders for each member of the family, mail, to file, church and business. 

This works pretty well and I keep it on our busy kitchen counter.  This is the spot where we all seem to ‘dump’ our daily stuff. 

Going through the filing the papers each day keeps it from piling up too much.

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3.  File

Our main filing is kept in a different room.  Once a week, ok…once a month, usually, I go through our kitchen file

station and file away the important papers to keep.

So how about you?

How do you manage the paper flow in your home?

Tell us in the comments below.

Thanks for the visit!

Claire

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My Favorite Packing Tips

I recently got back from a dreamy girls’ spa trip.  You can read about that HERE.

Four glorious days in sunny Mexico to lay by a pool with a good book. 

To make our travels easier we decided to not check in any luggage and

bring a carry-on bag.

Wait?!  What?!  ONE SMALL BAG??

Yep!  We made it happen and now I get to share with you all.

pink luggage

Here are My Favorite Packing Tips.

1.  Choose clothes that will mix and match. 

I chose neutral bottoms with more colorful and fun tops.  Same for the shoes…

white and black sandals were all I needed to match my outfits.  To decide what to bring,

I lay everything out on my bed to see how they go together.  I always seem to start with

more than I need and then narrow it down from there.

2.  Roll your clothes, instead of folding. 

Then place in suitcase starting with the largest to smallest pieces.  I had heard this

before, but this was the first time I actually did it.  I could not believe what a difference it made! 

It really did take up less space.

3.  Wear your ‘bulky’ clothes on the plane. 

Even though we were going to a sunny place, we wanted our tennis shoes so we could workout

{ok…maybe just go for a pretty walk before breakfast}.  So we wore our jeans, tennis shoes and

sweater/sweatshirt on the plane.  Saves a lot of room!

4.  Bring and use all those ‘sample’ toiletries products you have saved. 

I keep a small stash of these for when I travel.  They meet the airline guidelines for liquid sizes and

take up less space than my big bottle stuff.  

5.  Pack a plastic bag to bring home the dirty clothes in,

but be sure to roll them too.

There you have it!  5 EASY steps to hopefully make packing your bag a little easier.

This trip was to a sunny place and swim suits, shorts & flip flops do not take up a lot of space.

However, this Friday I am going to a business conference and I am attempting the same thing.

One carry-on bag.  Wish me luck!

Do you have any other tips on packing?  Please share with us!  I am always looking to improve this.

 

Looking forward to your next visit,

Claire

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