Five Spring Cleaning Tips to get you started this season
Spring is known for many things – warmer weather, fresh flowers, longer days – and most importantly, cleaning. It’s also the season to declutter, re-organise, mop, polish, sort and vacuum every nook and cranny of your home, which is why it’s The Organised Housewife’s favourite season.
“Throwing away unwanted items, donating used clothes and toys and tidying up your living areas is a great way to increase space, decrease anxiety and stress, encourage creativity, boost your mood and welcome the new season in a positive and meaningful way,” says The Organised Housewife founder Katrina Springer.
“It is an annual reminder that should be celebrated, rather than dreaded.”
Here are some of Katrina’s tips to help you get started with your spring cleaning:
Clean windows for a healthy house
They say the eyes are the windows to the soul, well your windows can be the soul of your house. Chances are they’ve been mostly closed throughout winter, so it’s a good idea to clean away any dust and dirt that’s built up on sills, blinds and windows before it all blows into the house. Set yourself up with all your cleaning products so you have them right on hand in a caddy. I like to keep some of these cleaning products:
- Bicarbonate soda/baking soda, in powdered sugar shaker
- 50/50 water & vinegar, in spray bottle
- 50/50 sugar soap & water, in spray bottle
- Cleaning brush or toothbrush
- Microfibre cloth
Wash the washing machine
It may sound funny, however, washing your washing machine makes sense. It too collects lots of dust, dirt and grime, therefore needing a regular clean to ensure your clothes are always clean and smelling fresh. I clean my washing machine every six months. You can start by soaking the softener dispenser in warm water to help remove any soap scum. While empty, put the washing machine through a hot temperature full cycle. As it’s filling up use the water and a cloth to wipe:
- Top of the washer
- Outside body
- Underneath of the lid
- Rim of the washing machine
- Top of the spinner
Then add a good splash of vinegar (1 cup), as this kills all the bacteria and takes away any unpleasant smells.
Label your pantry
Organising, labeling and putting like foods together in the pantry in preparation for summer will not only tidy up your eating habits but the entire space. Be sure to use standout labels on your containers for easy identification. I love to use the Avery home labelling range (pictured) as not only are they functional, but stylish to match the kitchen décor. You can also use writable labels to clearly mark the expiry dates to reduce food wastage. Then create a weekly meal plan to use up all the left-over winter foods such as soups, canned food for casseroles, etc.
Declutter your kitchen cupboards
During winter we use big pots and pans, slow cookers, etc. If you don’t use these in the warmer months store them away so your cupboards are less cluttered and you can reach what you need with ease. When organising your cupboards use the: SOMETIMES, RARELY, DAILY approach. Items that are used daily need to be easily accessible at the front of the cupboards or within arm’s reach. Keep the rarely and sometimes items on higher or lower shelves.
Declutter your kitchen cupboards
Clean behind your fridge
I must admit I never cleaned behind my fridge in my old house, it just didn’t occur to me. When we moved, I was horrified. There was so much dust and dirt buildup. From that day, I knew this was one task I would never neglect again. Once you’ve cleaned behind it’s also good to remember to clean the inside once a week when the groceries come in. Sort and throw away what you don’t need. I like to use this cleaning solution and pour the following ingredients into a spray bottle and shake:
- 1/2 cup white vinegar
- 1 cup hot water
- 3-5 drops of your favourite essential oil (I like citrus for the kitchen)
Have a fashion parade
This is the perfect time of year to pack the winter woolies away and to sort through the kids’ clothes (and yours), deciding what will be put away, handed down or donated, and to just tidy up the cupboards in general. Perhaps get the children involved by having them put on a fashion parade to see what fits and what doesn’t. They can also help out by labeling everything and Avery’s multi-use writable labels make the job too easy. I find it helpful to mark clothes for handing down or donation by the relevant age, for example 1-2 years etc. This will help you identify things more easily.