It’s Flu Season

It’s time of year again. So far I have been healthy (knock on wood) but so many of my friends and family have been sick.Some, like my son and my grandkids seem to get over something only to get sick again within a few days. Usually it’s just a cold, but other times it’s the flu which can be really nasty to deal with and very hard to get over.

This infographic from Bankers Healthcare Group shows the myths and facts about the flu. BHG, if you’re not already familiar with them, is a company whose focus is on providing loans for doctors and with their medical connections built this myth-busting graphic.  I learned a few things from it! Have you had your flu vaccine yet?
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Clever Organization for a Clean Home

Sometimes all the scrubbing and wiping in the world can’t seem to make your home clean. The sad truth is, if a bunch of misplaced items are scattered around, your place will look anything but clean. Organization is essential for keeping a home neat and clean, and the key you might have been missing all this time. In this article, we will walk you through a few clever organizing ideas that will make all the difference. Take a look.

 

clean bathroom sink

Rule #1: Don’t be intimidated to let go of your stuff

It’s hard to organize big piles of stuff. For this reason you have to get rid of some things. Over 20% of the stuff we have accumulated throughout the years is never actually used. So to get things started, go through all your belongings and get rid of anything that hasn’t been used in the past few months (there surely are a bunch of items that serve no purpose at all). Here is a rule of thumb you can use. Grab an item and hold it in your hand for a few seconds. In the meantime, figure out why you should or shouldn’t keep it. If you can’t think of any good reason to keep it, then it’s clear that you should dispose of it. This rule will help you to remove clutter.

Rule #2: Keep less stuff on your countertops, i.e. embrace the minimalist approach

Store your stuff in cupboards and drawers, keeping only a few items out on display. Overall, you want to showcase those things you use more often, such as your coffee machine, some of your kitchen utensils and perhaps a bowl of fruit.

You want to do this for several reasons:

* It will be much easier to clean your countertops if there is less stuff on them.
* Your kitchen/other rooms will look more spacious.
* For some reason, less clutter gives the impression of a cleaner space.

Generally speaking, the same rule applies for your shelves. Keep your shelves neat and organized by restricting the number of items you place on them is said by CleanStartCleaning Services NW6.

Rule #3: Use storage containers and organizers

Storage organizers come into our lives to make things easy and stress-free. They can keep all sorts of things in place and out of sight so that your home looks less cluttered. A few smart ways to organize your stuff include using baskets, plastic containers, even shoe organizers. As a matter of fact, many people resort to shoe organizers for many purposes other than to store their shoes. Honestly, there is such a dizzying variety of storage organizers in stores that your head will be spinning around and around and you will be like “Wow!” every time you encounter something you’ve never even imagined existed.

Rule #4: Find misplaced items a home

Everyone and everything needs a home. The same goes for your belongings. Each and every item must have an assigned place. Sort your items and find a place for all your stuff. Then also make sure to put it back where it belongs after each use. If you stumble across a misplaced item, just put it in its place.

Rule #5: Group similar items together

Keep spoons with spoons and cloths with cloths. Placing similar items in one spot will help you find your stuff in a breeze. Where you can go wrong with this rule of thumb is putting too much stuff in your drawers and cabinets. Ideally, you want to be able to see each and every item, so keep the contents well organized with small organizing containers.

Rule #6: Designate a few cleaning supplies for each room

Use different sponges, microfiber cloths and toothbrushes in every room to avoid cross-contamination. The best way to go is to pick items of different colors so that you always know which rag you should use where. Keep a few cloths or towels in your bathroom so that you can wipe dry the walls every time you get out of the shower. It will keep mold spores from appearing and also protect grime from building up. Furthermore, keep your cleaning supplies in one place. Invest in a cleaning caddy or a large enough see-through container where you can keep all products and tools.

With a few clever organizing tips and a little persistence you can keep a clean and tidy all the time.
 

 

 

 

 

 

Smart Storage Solutions for Small Homes

organizing small home

Small homes are, in most cases, less expensive and easier to maintain, but they often lack sufficient storage space. So if you are planning to move to a small apartment closer to your workplace or just looking for ways to maximize storage space in your existing apartment, don’t forget to have a look at our top 5 storage ideas for small spaces.

Multi-utility furniture

Multi-utility furniture offers you a smart way of maximizing storage in a small home, without taking up extra space. For example, a kitchen island with built-in storage shelves not only functions as a convenient workspace, but also gives you a handy space to store your wine bottles, mixing bowls, extra dishesand so on.

So if you are planning to go furniture hunting, look for items that serve multiple purposes. A kid’s bed with pullout storage will give you plenty of space to store toys, books and other kid paraphernalia. Anantique trunk with a flip-up lid can be used as a coffee table and for storing blankets or board games.

Up and Down

From built-in crockery shelves to a cozy home office, the space under your stairs can be used for a dozen purposes. But did you know that the space over the stairs, or for that matter, the steps, themselves could be used for storage? The stuff.co.nz website has some smart ideas to turn the not-so-properly-utilized space surrounding the staircase into bookshelves and to use hidden drawers under the bottom steps for storing shoes, books and so on.

Hang them up

If you are falling short of storage space in your new home, make hooks your new best friend. Avoid clutter in the hallway by using hooks to hang coats, scarves and jackets. A pocket organizer hung on the door of the closet can be used for storing small items such as socks, scarves and belts. Save precious storage space in your kitchen cupboards by hanging pots and pans on hooks on a metal rod above the sink. No floor space in the garage for your bicycles? Hang them up on the ceiling or on the wall using a pulley system.

Add more shelves

Break up the vertical space in your existing closet by adding shelves, clothing rod extendersor dividers. The space above clothing rods in most wardrobes can be used to add an extra shelf for storing shoes. If you have a recessed window in your bedroom, add a hanging bar below it and use it as open storage for your clothes. In the kitchen, add wire organizers to the inside of cabinet doors to store plastic bags and other light items.

Under the bed

While beds with built-in storage are always a good idea, don’t fret if you don’t have them. You can still make use of the under-the-bed space by buying open bins on casters – they make excellent storage for out-of-season clothes and extra bed linen. Just make sure that you cover your stuff up properly to keep them safe from dust and pests.

Kurt Jacobson is a writer and vacation rental manager. Knowing what it takes to maintain pristine appearances for customers, he thrives on sharing what he’s learned from his experience. When he’s not managing a property, he writes about home cleaning in Plymouth for Professional Home Cleaning Inc.

 

 

 

 

 

Oil Your Way to a Cleaner Home

essential oils700

Maybe we are the revival of a post grunge, uber sophisticated uninhibited culture. But then, there are some things for which mother nature has got the best solutions. Most people don’t enjoy cleaning their home. For some of us, even if we do enjoy it, the cleaning agents tend to irritate our skin due to their caustic nature. But, borrowing a page from eco-sensitivity, we can now clean our home in a safe, efficient and user friendly manner.

In this post, we have laid out a few oils you can use in your aim to clean your place. All of the suggested oils are easily and readily available online. In fact, major sites like Target.com can deliver these oils in a couple of days to you and always have stock. You can also ensure quality in the oils with the precise description given on the site.

Here is our list of oils that are used by many for various aspects of cleaning:

For the Garden: Neem Oil

Neem is a super power all by itself. Every part of the tree is usable and has multiple uses. In ancient Indian texts, it is believed that the neem is the one tree that absorbs a high amount of sunlight. Thereby, using it in our daily life, we can include the goodness of the sun transformed by the tree for better living. Neem oil is a sticky, viscous and smelly oil. It can be used for household chores but most people find the smell  overpoweringly bitter.

The best place to use neem oil is for the garden. It acts as a natural pesticide. Mix a couple of drops of the oil in water and use it on your plants. Ensure that you wash the leaves of a plant with the oil and water mixture as this proves to be very supportive of the growth of a plant, especially young plants. Note of caution while using neem oil: it is extremely powerful. Don’t overdo its usage with plants. You can use the oil in the water for plants once a week and twice initially.

For the Toilet: Any Essential Oil you Like

This one is an oldie but goodie. You can add a few drops of your favorite essential oil into the toilet tank. This acts as a natural fragrance bar. Add a few drops in to the side which is relatively free of equipment. Some of these essential oils can also be used to remove stains, kill germs and keep the toilet bowl looking clean. One such essential oil is that of lemon. With consistent use, lemon essential oil will brighten your toilet thus taking down one more chore off your list. Also, it is one of the most powerful essential oils fragrance wise. You will find the scent of this oil lasts a very long time and helps mask unpleasant smells. Not to mention, it’s terribly cost effective.

For the Floor: Eucalyptus Oil

This oil has tremendous abilities. Because of its natural properties, it is a powerful anti-inflammatory. It is also used to clear respiratory problems by inhaling the essence in boiling water or by just rubbing it into the chest. (note: while there are concentrated versions of this oil, most kinds can be used directly upon the skin. Please consider doing a patch test before actually using the oil topically).

It helps massively in repelling insects, especially mosquitoes. Moreover, it deodorizes and can help make your house very fragrant. It protects tiles and woods flooring alike by preventing the formation of mildew. It dries quickly on the floor and leaves a smooth, shiny finish to it.

All you need to do is add a half cap of oil (this may vary with the potency of the oil. Please consider your floors and act accordingly) in 1 gallon of water. It helps if you use warm water to clean. Use this water to swab your place and see it glow with health.  If you can’t handle the fragrance of this oil, you can add citronella oil to the mix and enjoy a warm lemongrass-y fragrance at your place.

These are just a few suggestions to get you started. Soon, you will be able to discover and harness the awesome potential of essential oils to not only bring down the toxicity we face on a daily basis but also to promote a healthy life.

Remember, you can get target coupons and a promo code at Chameleonjohn.com while purchasing these oils for big savings.