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Cleaning & Organizing Tips » 2012 » January

Lighten your load: Homemade laundry detergent cuts back on waste, saves money

Lighten your load: Homemade laundry detergent cuts back on waste, saves money
News from Memphis Commercial Appeal:

Stacey Reed had a hard time reconciling purchasing plastic container after plastic container of laundry detergent with her desire to live a greener life.

“As a mother of three growing boys, I wash a lot of laundry,” said the 37-year-old preschool teacher. “Every time I ran out of detergent, I would have this plastic container, and there was no way to go refill it like you can with water.”

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Stacey Reed uses attractive bottles and containers to hold her detergent. Others use a simple 5-gallon bucket.

Reed got to work searching the Internet for some alternatives and found, through the online sharing site Pinterest.com…………… continues on Memphis Commercial Appeal

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Making homemade cleaners is a growing trend
News from WTHI:

Updated: Monday, 23 Jan 2012, 5:52 PM EST
Published : Monday, 23 Jan 2012, 5:52 PM EST

CASEY, Il. – Laura Baston is a busy lady, playing the role of caretaker for her family of four and also running a daycare out of her house.

These roles require a lot of cleaning.

“I have to wash their bedding each week; and so I have to wash their blankets and their pillow cases and the stuffed animals they sleep with,” said Laura.

Doing 13 loads of laundry each week can really add up, so after hearing about a recipe from a friend, Laura decided to try making her own detergent.

“To make a load of soap takes me about 20 minutes, and I got two gallons and usually I double that and make four gallons. So 15 to 20 minutes and I have it done.”

Laura also makes her own dishwasher detergent and uses vinegar to clean the floors.

Everything is made from a mix of simple cleaning items available at almost any retail store.

She says making your own cleaners isn’t just quick and easy, it’s also amazingly cheap.

“I did a breakdown of making the laundry detergent and it comes out to less than a penny a load.”

While it’s more affordable, Laura insists the greatest benefit is simply getting rid of the chemicals.

“I know with all my daycare kids I don’t have to worry about them breathing in the fumes of the different things as I’m cl…………… continues on WTHI

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The Cleaning Encyclopedia
The ultimate guide to the art of cleaning, this reference is packed with professional secrets for getting maximum results through …
Get Organized! Your 12 Month Home Clutter Killer Guide : Organizing The House, Storage Solutions, Decluttering And How To Clean Your Home To Perfection
The No.1 Amazon Bestseller is back in this updated version for 2012Sometimes organizing your home feels too overwhelming. The clos…

House-cleaning Tips From the Pros

House-cleaning Tips From the Pros
News from HispanicBusiness.com:

Keep a cleaning schedule Angie’s List, the consumer review service, asked highly rated house-cleaning companies nationwide how often to clean the most-used rooms in your house. The answer: Big jobs weekly, small jobs daily.

Whether hiring a pro or doing it yourself, these guidelines can help shape your cleaning schedule:

– Bathrooms: Weekly cleanings are important. Start with the bathtub and sink and wipe all surfaces to prevent mildew and soap scum. Next, clean the toilet, allowing the cleaning agent to sit for several minutes before scrubbing. Mop the floor last.

– Kitchen: Wash dishes and clean the sink and countertops daily. Floors require constant cleaning depending on the amount of traffic.

– Living/family room: Clear away clutter on a daily basis. Dust and vacuum weekly; sweep more often if you have pets.

– Bedrooms: Wash linens weekly to help reduce allergens and dust mites. Regular dusting and vacuuming will also help reduce allergens.

MORE TIPS FROM THE PROS The moms of Mothers Cleaning Co-op shared their favorite cleaning tips:

– Sweep floors and vacuum rugs first, then tackle the other jobs. “Once that vacuuming is out of the way, you can clearly see how much more work needs to be done,” said Mothers founder Betty Nicholson.

– Clean baseboards, too. Hair, dirt and allergens collect on the floor’s edges.<…………… continues on HispanicBusiness.com

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Martha Stewart’s Homekeeping Handbook: The Essential Guide to Caring for Everything in Your Home
Whether your home is small or large, an apartment in the city or a country cottage, it is a space that should be at once beautiful…
The Cleaning Encyclopedia
The ultimate guide to the art of cleaning, this reference is packed with professional secrets for getting maximum results through …

You Can Help by United Way of Southwestern Indiana

You Can Help by United Way of Southwestern Indiana
News from Evansville Courier & Press:

Items for agencies

Adam’s Pantry needs four refrigerators, sturdy metal shelves or wood shelves (not the plastic ones), a washing machine and a freezer. Call Roberta at 812-499-8422.

Ark Crisis Nursery needs children’s books, crayons, pencils, paper and folders. Contact LeAnn at 812-423-9425.

Grace House Teen Challenge of Evansville needs twin-size mattresses, bedding, individual CD players, AA rechargeable batteries, notebooks, folders, household cleaning supplies, shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, brushes, combs, toilet paper, laundry detergent and fabric softener. Call Cindy or Tamika at 812-428-8448.

Items for clients

AIDS Resource Group clients need: a stove, a refrigerator, dinnerware, flatware, pots and pans and thermometers for refrigerators and freezers. Call 812-421-0059.

Patchwork Central needs Christmas gift bags and tissue paper for Christmas 2012. Call Shawn or Dee at 812-424-2735.

St. Vincent DePaul Daycare needs baby wipes, AA batteries, dry-erase markers, washable markers, size 4 and 5 diapers. Call Tammy Hobby at 812-424-4780.

Volunteer options

Abba Clinic (Pregnancy Resource Center) is in need of an Ultrasound Technician to perform ultrasounds one Saturday per month for two hours. Contact Kelly Campbell or Connie Black at 812-897-4910 or email

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Window cleaning tips for a squeaky clean finish

Window cleaning tips for a squeaky clean finish
News from Fastklean:

22/01/2012

Window cleaning is not the most appealing of jobs, but one expert has offered some tips that will ensure they can get a squeaky clean finish every time.

To begin with, advises Farah Abdurahman, writing on the Hills News, when filling the bucket with water, opt for half cold and half warm, as hot water will evaporate too quickly.

Start by giving the window a scrub to ensure that all the dirt is lifted, and scrape any difficult marks off with a scraper, to avoid them becoming problematic later on in the window cleaning.

If the scraper does need to be employed, pass the blade in a forward direction over the window, as doing the opposite could drag dirt and cement across the pane and cause damage.

When the need for a squeegee arises in the window cleaning process, hold it at a 45 degree angle, apply adequate pressure and keep this consistent throughout, advises the expert.

Following this, use a micro-fibre cloth to wipe the edges, which should get rid of any water marks.

This follows news of a new silicone spray designed to repel oil and water, which could improve the results of window cleaning.

Posted by Peter Michael

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Spring Cleaning Your Self-Storage Facility: Tips for Inside and Out
News from Inside Self-Storage:

After a hard, dreary winter, you may find your self-storage facility is in need of a spring spruce-up. Now’s a good time to look around and see what you can do to make the property clean and cheery before rental season starts. Make yourself a to-do list, collect your supplies, make a schedule to tackle each task, and get’er done! Here are some steps to a brighter, cleaner facility.

Inside

Your front office is where customers get one of their first impressions of your business. Dirty floors, a cramped retail area, and dust in the corners will not create a positive reaction.

Start at the front door and clean the handle, glass and kick plates. Consider having the glass professionally cleaned at least once per year. Don’t forget the sills and anywhere else dust, dirt and cobwebs build up.
Now’s the time to de-clutter that junk drawer and file or toss old Yellow Pages ads, forms, junk mail and other stuff that has accumulated. Check your file drawers for ways to consolidate, store or neaten paperwork, allowing for more usable space.

How raggedy are your tenant files? Maybe it’s time to invest in a new box of manila file folders. Or maybe there’s a new box already hiding somewhere in one of those drawers or cabinets. Be sure to use what you have before you buy more.

Is there a nest of electrical wires under the desk th…………… continues on Inside Self-Storage

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Casa Latina’s Month-to-Month, Home Organization Calendar (Part Two)

Casa Latina’s Month-to-Month, Home Organization Calendar (Part Two)
News from Fox News:

I firmly believe that an organized home is a happy home. And life is more enjoyable if you don’t have to search for things in over stuffed closets and cabinets or in a cluttered basement. But, as I said in part-one, organizing your home can seem like a daunting task if you don’t approach it in a manageable way. That’s why I created my 2012 ‘one-weekend-a-month’ plan. It’s a simple step-by-step guide that will help you get your home in order. And now that you are ready for the next six month’s worth of projects it’s time to develop one simple habit that will help you stay organized for life. This is to train yourself to put things where they belong as soon as they leave your hands. This may sound simple but it’s not an easy thing to do on a regular basis. However, I assure you that with a little effort it will eventually become a habit that will help you stay organized for life.

Now let’s get to your July through December schedule!

July – What’s Living Under Your Bed? 

Though you may not think of it this way, the space under your bed is precious real estate and it is often underutilized.

This weekend you’ll be spending time under and around your bed instead of on top of it. Ditto for the kid’s beds. If this space is already being used for storage pull everything out. Take a good look at your stuff and ask yourself, “how long…………… continues on Fox News

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POLITICO Influence: Pro-biz liberals
News from Politico:

PI SCOOP … NEW SUPER PAC TO BOOST ‘PRO-BUSINESS, SOCIALLY PROGRESSIVE’ CANDIDATES: A new super PAC dubbed American Sunrise plans to raise between $ 1.5 million and $ 2 million to support several young, pro-business congressional candidates who are also “socially progressive,” its leader, Bill Phillips, tells PI. While the super PAC hasn’t made a formal decision on who it’ll support, Phillips says it’s giving strong consideration to three candidates in particular: Democrats Patrick Murphy in Florida’s 22nd District, Joaquin Castro in Texas’s 20th District and Andrew Hughes in Washington’s 1st District.

“We think there is a new generation of leaders ready to step forward and that there’s some good opportunities for wins in three to five congressional races,” said Phillips, a political strategist who’s president of Orlando, Fla.-based Defero Advisory Services.

PODESTAS TO FETE TOP DEMS AT BIG-DOLLAR FUNDRAISER: Super lobbyists Tony Podesta and Heather Podesta will host a big-dollar fundraiser for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee from 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Feb. 1 at their house. Paul Brathwaite and Nancy and Harold Zirkin continues on Politico

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A Day In The Life House Cleaning Ivory


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State offers tips for staying safe, healthy during floods and clean-up

State offers tips for staying safe, healthy during floods and clean-up
News from OregonLive.com:

More

The Oregonian’s continuing coverage of the flooding and landslides set off by heavy rain in western Oregon.

Unloading sandbags in Turner on Friday.

As Oregonians cope with flooding, the Oregon Health Authority’s Public Health Division offers some tips for protecting their health during clean-up.

  • Injury Prevention: Stay out of flood waters. Even the strongest swimmers can drown in flood waters. Do not drive through standing water. Never make contact with power lines or objects that are in contact with power lines. Wear eye protection when cleaning up storm debris.
  • Water: Check for local boil-water advisories. Do not use contaminated water to wash dishes, brush teeth, prepare food, make ice or make baby formula.
  • Well water: If your well has been affected by flood waters, it is recommended that you boil your water for at least one minute at a rolling boil, or purchase water from a safe source. Before resuming norm…………… continues on OregonLive.com

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tips from the pros
News from Sacramento Bee:

Keep a cleaning schedule

Angie’s List, the consumer review service, asked highly rated house-cleaning companies nationwide how often to clean the most-used rooms in your house. The answer: Big jobs weekly, small jobs daily.

Whether hiring a pro or doing it yourself, these guidelines can help shape your cleaning schedule:

• Bathrooms: Weekly cleanings are important. Start with the bathtub and sink and wipe all surfaces to prevent mildew and soap scum. Next, clean the toilet, allowing the cleaning agent to sit for several minutes before scrubbing. Mop the floor last.

• Kitchen: Wash dishes and clean the sink and countertops daily. Floors require constant cleaning depending on the amount of traffic.

• Living/family room: Clear away clutter on a daily basis. Dust and vacuum weekly; sweep more often if you have pets.

• Bedrooms: Wash linens weekly to help reduce allergens and dust mites. Regular dusting and vacuuming will also help reduce allergens.

MORE TIPS FROM THE PROS

The moms of Mothers Cleaning Co-op shared their favorite cleaning tips:

• Sweep floors and vacuum rugs first, then tackle the other jobs. “Once that vacuuming is out of the way, you can clearly see how much more work needs to be done,” said Mothers founder Betty Nichols…………… continues on Sacramento Bee

… Read the full article


The Cleaning Encyclopedia
The ultimate guide to the art of cleaning, this reference is packed with professional secrets for getting maximum results through …

Start cleaning the green way

Start cleaning the green way
News from Winston-Salem Journal:

By: Cindy Hodnett | Special correspondent

People love a clean house. But getting there can be a problem if you are trying to minimize the use of chemical-laden cleaning products.

“Indoor air pollution can be up to 70 times higher than outdoor air pollution, and much of that pollution is due to cleaning products,” said Kelly Vlahakis-Hanks, vice president for Earth Friendly Products. “Green cleaning products are not a luxury – they are a necessity.”

Vlahakis-Hanks’ father started the parent company of Earth Friendly Products after emigrating from Greece in 1967. The company went entirely green in 1989, eventually growing to include five manufacturing plants in the U.S. The factories are powered with solar panels and are spread throughout the country to minimize the transportation carbon footprint.

“People need to be mindful of the products they buy,” Vlahakis-Hanks said. “They buy organic food, but then they wash their dishes in something that has a skull-and-crossbones image on the bottle. That toxic residue is left on plates and glasses. It’s the sa…………… continues on Winston-Salem Journal

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Church calendar: Jan. 20, 2012
News from Daily Comet:

Published: Friday, January 20, 2012 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, January 19, 2012 at 5:33 p.m.

United Methodist Women’s Day is scheduled for 11 a.m. Jan. 29 at Magnolia United Methodist Church, 128 Johnson Ridge Lane, Thibodaux. The theme is “Honoring the Past and Nurturing the Future.”

A healing and deliverance service is scheduled for 3 p.m. Jan. 29 at the Ramada Inn, 1400 W. Tunnel Blvd., Houma. Bishop A.L. and Joyce Dowdell of New Testament Potter’s House Full Gospel Church No. 2 in Auburn, Ala. are the service’s guest speakers.

The drawing for the Genevieve Foundation’s Dream Home is Aug. 18. The three-bedroom, 2-1/2-bath home being raffled is located in Acadia Plantation subdivision, 128 Rue Celeste, Thibodaux. The Rev. Dean Danos, pastor of St. Genevieve Catholic Church, said the benefit is to reduce the church’s debt. The drawing will take place at 3 p.m. and winner need not be present. Tickets cost $ 100. The complete terms and conditions of the raffle can be found at www.thegenevievefoundation.org.

An Advent evening prayer with Communion is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Wednesdays at Thibodaux First United Methodist Church, 1255 Canal Blvd.

Thibodaux First United Methodist Church’s children’s ministry is collecting food and other items for the group’s mission project to be donated to the Good Samaritian…………… continues on Daily Comet

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Cross-country skiing tips: How to get the most of your equipment

Cross-country skiing tips: How to get the most of your equipment
News from MLive.com:

Winter snows finally made it to West Michigan. And I am one who is glad they did. A winter without snow isn’t worth all that much.

Area cross-country ski trails have been rough, to say the least, but that didn’t keep a group of us from getting out to enjoy them last weekend. The trails were marginal, a mix of deep fresh snow with an icy, wet and crusty underlayer.

Skiing, nonetheless, was enjoyable, but I quickly noticed that my skis weren’t gliding as well as normal. Shame on me, I thought. The decision to ski had come up quickly and I hadn’t bothered to prep them.

Prep takes only minimal time, but it’s a time investment that is always worth it. A few moments spent cleaning the bottoms and applying glide wax always results in faster speeds and longer glides.

I ski waxless track skis most of my days out. Those are skinny skis made for groomed tracks. They do well enough on ungroomed surfaces if the snow isn’t too deep. By all accounts I am a recreational skier.

I am proud to say I still have my old wooden skis. They rarely see the light of day, but I love having them and think now and then to get them out and use them for a lark.

My old boots for those th…………… continues on MLive.com

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Savings tips can help you improve your financial outlook
News from Fayetteville Observer:

Related

Some bills are fixed – the monthly rent or mortgage payments for instance. Others fluctuate with the season – think the electric bill in winter and the water bill in summer.

For everything else you spend money on, you don’t need your mother to tell you it pays to shop around. Common sense tells you to do some homework before opening your wallet. And, with the help of the Internet, you can easily compare prices and read helpful user comments and reviews.

To help you make ends meet in the new year, we offer these money-saving tips.

GOOD TIMES

Take advantage of happy-hour deals or early-bird specials at restaurants and bars.

Meet for drinks at someone’s house, then go out to eat to eliminate big-ticket alcoholic drinks.

Volunteer as event staff at favorite festivals or venues.

Purchase season passes during early-bird dates.

Attend reviews of professional shows or quality college productions.

Check your existing memberships, such as with the auto club and credit-card company, for discounts on things like glasses and for stores and travel.

Ask for discounts at museums and tours. Visit during…………… continues on Fayetteville Observer

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The Ultimate Guide Of Speed Cleaning Secrets – 65 % Commission
Super Ebook In Hot Niche. Everything You Need To Know To Get Your House Cleaned Quickly And Efficiently Is In This Guide. Learn The All The Tips And Tricks.
The Ultimate Guide Of Speed Cleaning Secrets – 65 % Commission

9 Tips to Cleaning Your House Like A Pro

9 Tips to Cleaning Your House Like A Pro
News from Patch.com:

It is tough to fit cleaning into today’s schedules. Between working, school, sports, homework, volunteer shifts or social plans, the amount time available to keep the home in great shape seems to continue to lessen. 

If your home is on the market, the need to have it show in its best condition is extremely important, especially in today’s buyer’s market. Trying to keep your home in this condition can be stressful.  The following 9 tips should help you to get your home in this condition and help keep it that way.

1. Keep a weekly schedule. Creating a schedule with reasonable, daily expectations for everyone will help share the load.  It will also make the tasks more manageable over all.  If the house is tidied up every day, the extra things like mopping or vacuuming will be added on quickly.

2. Clean up after yourself. This tip seems like common sense- however by doing things like putting dishes straight into the dishwasher, wiping down showers and sinks after use and making the bed in the morning will substantially cut down on the things to do before a showing.

3. Wipe spills in the fridge right away. Most homes are sold with the refrigerator, meaning that the buyers will be peeking inside.  Rather than waiting to clean the entire fridge at once, time can be minimized by wiping up spills as…………… continues on Patch.com

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Tip List: Bear Creek getting some attention
News from Merced Sun-Star:

Bear Creek was crawling with the Merced County Crawdads cleanup crew last weekend in an effort to clean up the debris left behind after the water dried up.

The group collected about 10 bags of trash from the creek and around Applegate Park.

The 11-person crew cleaned the creek from under the bridge at

M Street to R Street, according to Tom Price, who is part of the group.

“We pulled three shopping carts, two saw blades, random stuff,” Price said. “A lot of gross stuff like condoms and dirty blankets, stuff like that.”

Trash in and around Bear Creek has been an issue for years, he said.

The Crawdads plan to clean up the creek at least once a month.

He said if Mercedians see people out making an effort to clean the town, maybe they will think twice about littering. “People care about the community. It’s not hard to do the right thing,” Price said.

The county, city and Merced Irrigation District make up the Merced County Streams Group, which works to ensure there is flood capacity in Bear Creek, according to Paul Fillebrown, public works director for the county. He said if they notice something that’s going to break loose or channel up against a bridge, they’ll pull it out.

“We clear brush and trees,” he said. “If we found some large debris, we would pi…………… continues on Merced Sun-Star

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The House That Cleans Itself: Creative Solutions for a Clean and Orderly House in Less Time Than You Can Imagine
The House That Cleans Itself is a true housekeeping guide for the housekeeping–impaired! It boldly takes on the reasons behind …
The Lost Art of House Cleaning: A Clean House is a Happy Home
The art of housecleaning has been all but lost. Until now.Jan Dougherty has owned a residential cleaning company for six years and…

Tips for cleaning wood floors

Tips for cleaning wood floors
News from San Bernardino Sun:

If there’s one thing I’ve learned in searching for the answer to the simple question, “How should I clean my wood floors?” this is it: There is no simple answer.

Laminate wood. Laminates like Pergo and Wilsonart are dense fiberboard on the inside, covered with a paper pattern layer sealed under high pressure with a plastic-like substance. Damp mop for routine maintenance, but do not use soaps or detergents on laminates because they may dull the floor. For heavy cleaning, use a mixture of household vinegar and water (1 cup vinegar to 1gallon warm water) or household ammonia and water (1/2cup ammonia to 1 gallon warm water).

Engineered wood. Plywood with a thin veneer of finished solid wood on top, engineered wood flooring has superior strength to wood planks and is the most popular type of wood floor these days.

There are mainly three types of finishes for wood floors: varnish/shellac, penetrating seal (wax) or a surface finish (urethane). You should never use vinyl or tile floor cleaners on wood. Also you should avoid using a wet mop on wood floors.

Unless your floors are quite old, a shellac finish is unlikely. If you don’t know which type of finish you have, try smudging the finish with a finger or scraping the finish with a fingernail or sharp instrument in a hidden area. If the smudge is noticeable

or no clear fi…………… continues on San Bernardino Sun

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