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May 30: Feet & Head

Updated: May 31, 2020

I learned how to keep a really clean floor from my husband. When he was young, he worked for his father at his floor cleaning business. So when we got married, and divided house chores, he volunteered for floor duty.

He purchased the perfect vacuum, floor steamer, wet mop, dust mop, broom and battery-operated sweeper. I had no idea we needed all of that! Before then, I purchased any vacuum, mop and broom, and then used them "periodically" - not regularly! My husband created and maintained a regular floor cleaning schedule for our home and our floors were always squeaky clean. I know because I walk around barefooted a lot!

When I began helping my parents at their home, I had to buy a few things to add to their floor cleaning arsenal: a Swiffer was top on the list! Their kitchen floor is older and not coated with dirt- and scuff-proof properties like newer floors are, so mopping it was almost a daily requirement. Since I dreaded hauling out the mop and bucket on a frequent basis - and wringing out that dirty mop into dirty water! - I tried a Swiffer and loved it. It's great for quick clean ups. Ceramic tile, linoleum, laminate and hardwoods all need wet and/or dry mopping to keep clean. Sometimes water is enough, or you may elect to use a cleaner. A little dish washing liquid in water works too on greasy or sticky spills.

Keeping your carpets clean begins with regular vacuuming or dirt gets ground into the fibers and needs steam cleaning to remove. If you have rugs with fringe, you have to be careful with the vacuum or you will damage the fringe. A hand-held vacuum tool is good for this use. Spot cleaning keeps your carpets cleaner between steam cleanings and is very easy to use. A great one is 409 Carpet Spot & Stain Cleaner. I've used it on all types of stains and it's gotten every one out. Spray well, scrub with a clean white rag, let thoroughly dry and vacuum. Stain gone.... like magic! A battery-operated vacuum is good to get steps clean and those lone spills between regular vacuums.

Since I'm short, I don't always look up, but when I do.....oh no!! Cobwebs can be hanging precariously from the ceiling and I don't notice them immediately. The broom gets them down quickly. Then I look at my light fixtures. I see dust and dirt inside the glass light cover and begin checking them all. I had to learn how to take the covers off (it's an art!) and get them back on. Wash the cover in warm soapy water and dry thoroughly before putting it back up. Never spray cleaner into a light fixture or on light bulbs. If you have a crystal chandelier, you may have to take each crystal off to wash, wipe the metal parts, and rehang the crystals. Some people place newspaper under their chandeliers, spray with cleaner, and let them drip dry. Read all cleaner instructions carefully to prevent damage.

Take Away: Buy the tools you need to make cleaning easier...... you'll be more prone to using them on a regular basis. Store them in a place that's easy to get them in and out of. Be open to trying new cleaners and equipment - they get better every year! Tomorrow we will wrap up our month of organizing!

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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