Friday, January 30, 2009

If you have read any of my blogs or take my newsletter you know how I promote preventive cleaning. Preventive cleaning is even more important today with the economy in such turmoil. If dirt is allowed to build, it means replaceing an item sooner, which is costly to you and our Mother Earth. Walk gently and clean proficiently.
When I was professionally cleaning homes, some blinds had dirt buildup so bad you could write your name in bold letters. Yet 5 minutes a month per blind and the problem is prevented.
Wood, metal and vinyl blinds can be safely cleaned with 2 tablespoons of food based distilled white vinegar per quart of water. Lightly dampen a lint free cloth like an old cotten t-shirt or one of our baby diaper cleaning cloths.
Turn the slats downward so the main part of the blind faces you. Start at the top and wipe them down. Reverse the slats, pull the blind out and walk around behind the blind. Repeat from the backside. If your blinds have heavy dirt buildup then use an all purpose cleaner like our CleanEz. Take the blinds outside and hang them from two nails pounded into the back side of your home. Make sure they are up high enough so the blinds clear the ground and wide enough apart to keep the blinds balanced.
Turn the slats so they face downward. Begin at the bottom and spray the cleaner on your blinds working your way to the top. Rinse them with a sponge then dry and reverse the slats. Repeat from the back. Then rinse, dry and rehang the blinds. Do not use this method with wood blinds. Contact the manufacturer for proper cleaning procedures.
This article may only be reprinted giving full credit to Mary Findley and her website at Copyright 2009. All Rights reserved worldwide

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Green, spring cleaning. If you have been a regular reader of my blog, you have freed your home of toxic chemicals and beauty products right? RIGHT? If not scroll down and find where I give you suggestions on what rooms to scavange for toxins and how to spot them. Please for your sake, take this small step to improve your health, that of your family and our Mother Earth. Together our small actions speak volumes.
This next series starts tackling the smaller spring cleaning jobs. No you may not ignore cleaning the tough stuff I talked about in my last several blogs.
First step) While you have the ladder out to change the batteries in your Co2 and fire alarm take that time to thoroughly clean ceiling fans and light fixtures. Most people use some kind of bendable duster to remove the surface dust from ceiling fan blades. That works well but once or twice a year you must wipe them down with a good wood cleaner and conditioner. If you are looking for a completely natural yet effective wood cleaing and conditioning product then take a look at our Wood Care. It even covers scratches, most water marks and cabinets that have dulled from the steam in bathrooms.
How long has it been since you removed the base of the fan and thoroughly cleaned the motor housing? This one measure -It only takes minutes - adds years of life to your fan.
This article may only be reprinted giving full credit to Mary Findley and her website at Copyright 2009. All Rights reserved worldwide

Monday, January 26, 2009


As you begin your spring cleaning keep in mind your goals of ridding your home of toxic chemicals. See my prior posts on how create an eco-friendly green home. Spring cleaning is not restricted to just the spring time. Creating good habits for a naturally clean home is a year round project. Remember the very first step to cleaning any room is to get rid of the clutter. You will read this on every website and every article about cleaning.

My rule of thumb on clutter removal is "Never leave a room empty handed." Pick up something and take it with you then put it away. Next rule - never enter a room without putting something away. If the item belongs in the room - put it away even the small stuff. The small stuff quickly adds up when it comes to clutter.

This article may only be reprinted giving full credit to Mary Findley and her website at Copyright 2009. All Rights reserved worldwide.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Vacuum Your Drapes. There is nothing I dislike more than vacuuming drapery to remove the dust. To me, it is the worst waste of time invented, well almost. Grab a partner and remove the drapes. Put some plastic on the ground either out in the garage or outside if it is warm enough to be out there for 10 to 15 minutes. Please use common sense and don't do this with snow on the ground. Take the drapes outside or to the garage and shake them good. Wear a face mask because the dust does fly. Covering the ground with plastic protectes the drapes in case they take on a life of their own and go flying out of your hands. 

This article may only be reprinted giving full credit to Mary Findley and her website at Copyright @2009 All rights reserved worldwide.


Saturday, January 24, 2009

Project #5 for Spring Cleaning

When was the last time you vacuumed your mattresses? Don't remember? Guess what? It's time to tackle this yearly job. Repeat after me "I won't stop until I have the mattresses and all fabric furniture vacuumed." Dust mites in mattresses and pillows reigns as the #1 cause of morning sinus headaches. Take your pillows outside and shake them good, wash the mattress cover pad and vacuum the mattress. 

Speaking of vacuuming your mattress - how often to you turn or flip it? You should do that every time you wash the sheets. Turn it one time and flip it the next. This way the mattress wears evenly and it will last you years longer.

Friday, January 23, 2009

This next step to deep cleaning is actually superficial but must be done to keep dust mites at bay. All the magazines, books, CDs and DVDs hanging around the nooks and crannies of your home need your clean thumb as well. The dust that lingers on them deteriorates the covers and provides a wonderful hiding spot for dust mites. Dust mites are known for their allergy causing irritations as well as skin rashes and asthma attacks. Get out the brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner then pull out all these books etc. Give them a good vacuuming. And yes clean the shelves while you have them pulled out. Yes this lightens the weight of the bookshelf or stereo cabinet so pull it out and clean behind and under it and you have two jobs accomplished!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

On The Third Day of Spring Cleaning my House Said to Me...

Please clean my baseboards. Okay so sometimes it takes a bit of humor to encourage us to tackle these unpopular chores.  Hopefully you make humor a vital part of your everyday life. It is healing to the spirit and physically as well. Next up on the spring cleaning list is to pull all furniture away from the walls. Wipe down the walls and work your way along the baseboards cleaning them and the carpet as well. Use a barely damp towel or a "dry sponges" found at the pet stores and sometimes places like Bed Bath and Beyond. Remember any musty odor or visable mold or mildew in these hidden spots has an originating cause. Find it and take care of the moisture problem.

This is why I'm so adamant about deep cleaning. You spot potential trouble areas like water spots on walls, before the problem becomes severe. One of my customers wrote to ask me about gray splotches on her linoleum kitchen floor. I told her it was mold and to immediately find the source and repair the source of the water. By the time she finally followed my advice their floor had rotted so badly it was close to collapsing. Their main living area was on the second floor so the consequences of ignoring my advice nearly cost them their home. Their insurance would not have covered the damage since it was due to flooding. The dish washer was leaking and they were unaware of the problem. 

This article may only be reprinted giving full credit to Mary Findley and her website at Copyright @2009 All rights reserved worldwide.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Here is the second of your spring cleaning chores to tackle. I find scheduling a certain day to tackle these deep cleaning chores works best for me. All other activities are planned so they don't interfere with "my" day. I stay focused, which means the chores are finished faster. Fast is good right? 
If you agree then let's get started. When was the last time you pulled everything out of your closet to clean the floor and walls?  This job is even more important if you live in an area with high humidity.  Mold and mildew must be kept under control or you risk a whole home contamination. Green clean any mold by first using a 50/50 solution of food grade distilled white vinegar to water. Wait 30 minutes then follow with 3% hydrogen peroxide. Place a fan near the door of the closet, or room if you are treating your room for mold, and allow the fan to run for several hours to dry the carpet. Do not use a heater in these areas as heat encourages mold growth.
 I used to be a fan of giving away anything in your closet that you haven't worn in the past 3 to 4 years. With the economy the way it is, I'm finding new combinations for my older clothes. A few are funky but fun. In Eugene funky fun is the norm so I'm having a ball mixing things up a bit. Any clothing you aren't going to way, definately give to Goodwill. Dust mites love to gather at the local unused clothing hut.

This article may only be reprinted giving full credit to Mary Findley and her website at Copyright @2009 All rights reserved worldwide.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

    The next few posts are geared to get you ahead of regular spring cleaning jobs. These are the deep cleaning areas that need yearly attention. Yes the ones we all tend to ignore. Remember to do all your cleaning with organic green cleaners and tools. Be sure to read my website for my warnings about the use of microfiber. It is on the floor care section. This "environmentally" friendly cleaning cloth and mop has a nasty side.
Here is the first spring cleaning chore to tackle:
    Trust me after cleaning homes for 12 years, I've figured out every possible trick to put off deep cleaning my home. Unless you like dust mites and the ailments that accompany them, get thyself geared up for the tough stuff.  

     First up - tackle the kitchen cabinets. Sorry I'm the President of the Procrastinator's Club and it's time to tackle this job. Don't try getting by with cleaning a few cabinets now with the promise you will finish them next weekend. When was the last time you finished one of these jobs after doing only half of it? Well, I didn't finish it either. Set aside the time and clean them all at once. Kids love to pull things out of cabinets so let them help. Older children can wipe down shelves. 

     Pull everything off one shelf then wipe it down. Toss anything if it's so old you don't remember when you bought it or it's past the expiration date. Discard cans with visible signs of rust, or bulging ends. Open your spice bottles. If you can't smell the spice, it's not going to flavor a thing. Keep the bottle, dump the contents then head to an organic store and buy bulk spices to refill the bottles. Bulk is far cheaper and organic herbs have a hefty flavor so you use less. I grow and dry all my own herbs. Their aroma and flavor is unsurpassed.  Plant one sweet basil plant this spring and I promise you'll find space for a dozen herb plants next year.   

    When you finish the shelves, wipe down the doors with our Wood Care. It gives wood a luster and conditions it to prevent cracking.  It even revives bathroom cabinets that have grayed from steamy showers plus it covers over scratches and water marks on furniture.

This article may only be reprinted giving full credit to Mary Findley and her website at Copyright @2009 All rights reserved worldwide.