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May 24: Do You Care About Me?

Updated: May 25, 2020

We've spent the first 23 days of May talking about organizing certain spaces or items. Today we will talk about how you show love to your possessions. Huh?? Show love? Yes! My dad taught me that if you care about a possession, you'll take care of it. How do we do that? We keep it clean and we maintain it - according to manufacturers instructions! The last week in May we will discuss the cleaning and maintenance of certain items - like how to clean a stove properly, cleaning out the lint traps, cleaning jewelry without damaging it, cleaning and maintaining tools so they don't rust, etc. Are you ready to tackle those dust bunnies?

There are things that need to be cleaned and/or maintained daily (like dishes), weekly (like clothes), monthly (like coffee makers), or as needed (like water filters). Since we are all so busy, keeping up with our cleaning and maintenance schedules can be daunting.

Usually, when I start cleaning, I notice dirt on other stuff that I've overlooked - and then start wondering when was the last time I cleaned it! Places like under the refrigerator (or couch!), the floor in the closet, the sports equipment bin in the garage, etc....the accumulated crud always surprises me!

I am also terrible at remembering to change batteries (like in remote controls, flash lights or alarm panels) so I have to put a reminder in my phone, which works very well for me! You don't realize how important changing a batter is until you open the remote and there's battery acid and corrosion all over the inside of it (a little bit of rubbing alcohol on q-tips can help to clean this up). If there's an item that you don't use regularly - take the batteries out until you need it. I also put reminders in my phone for when I need to change my whole house water filter, coffee maker water filter, etc.

In the old days, people usually cleaned house, cut grass, did laundry, etc. on Saturdays (depending on your religion). Growing up, my siblings and I all had house chores to do. Our parents gave us the latitude of when it got done - as long as it got done (teaching us time management skills!). I tried to do my house chores on Friday evenings so that I could hang out with my friends on Saturday afternoon. Happy, happy, days, days!

Creating a schedule of when you will clean can help you keep up with everything. Or you can select a particular room or area to clean when you find a chunk of time. You'd be amazed at how much you can clean in 15 minute increments! I wipe my stove down every time I cook and wash my sink out every time I do dishes so they stay pretty clean all the time. I wipe out my refrigerator when I see things that spilled - but also do a more thorough cleaning when I take everything out to clean it. I clean my bathroom, or parts of it, when it looks dirty - and don't wait for my cleaning day. Cleaning as you go along lessons the amount of time you have to set aside on a weekly basis to clean.

Take Away: Taking care of what you own makes it last longer, work more efficiently, look better and retain it's value. This is also so true when it comes to homes and cars - staying on top of the maintenance will ensure many years of enjoyment for you and command more money if and when you decide to sell it. Find your best time to clean and maintain... and claim it!

About the Author: L. Sidney Irving is the owner of Sidco Properties, a real estate company dedicated to educating and assisting those that want to buy or sell a home, Sidney loves to organize herself and those around her because she believes that an organized space brings peace and fosters creativity. May the power of organization be with you!

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