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Keep it together...

07 March 2010

Love her or well don't, Martha knows her job. While the information she shares is rarely a total revelation,  she organizes and arranges household info in clear and easy way, that it is hard to ignore.  She knows what she is selling... and honestly who couldn't use a little reminder?   Especially with spring around the corner...

I thought you might want to hear some of the great simple tips she had for household preventative care.  You can see the whole slideshow of ideas here on her site

1. Make your bed! 
 If you take care of this, you will be less likely to let the rest of the piles linger. 

2. Put them in their place! (you go)
Whenever leaving a room grab something that is out of place and put it away. 
For even more impact make it a family rule.

3.Sort the mail 
Recycle unwanted papers, place bills, filing, and personal mail in their respective boxes.

4.Clean as you cook
Place your used dishes in the dishwasher as you cook, rinse immediately and/or quickly wash them and replace them- this is one of my mother's rules too.  The family joke is that you can usually only get one sip of a glass of water, before Mom dumps it out and throws it in the dishwasher, she is super efficient. ( I love you Mom!)

5. Wipe up spills ASAP! 
They are easier to clean while they are fresh, (you will remember this tip the next time you are scrubbing dried spaghetti sauce off your cook-top!!!
(this little baby can be purchased like this.. 
after all April 1st is just around the corner)

6. Go Shoe-less
Institute a no-shoes policy. Shoes track in all kinds of grime and abrade hard surfaces. 
Wear slippers or socks instead indoors, or go barefoot.
(Follow Mr Rogers example! Image found here)

7. Get Rid of Carpet Ghosts

If you have indentations or carpet ghosts! wooooo - left by furniture in pile carpet, place ice cubes on the dent. The fibers will swell as they absorb the water. Vacuum carpet thoroughly to pull up wet fibers. 

There are other great ideas in the article, so check it out.  

What are some of the things you always do
 to keep things clean?
What do you wish you would do?


Genevieve March 7, 2010 at 8:23 AM  

these are great little reminders! i find that if i not only make our bed but open all the blinds and curtains- that helps too. oh and number 2 reminded me of when we were little. we would call the top and bottom of the staircase the "as-you". "as-you" go up or down them, always clear your stuff from the pile and put it away. that way my mom could always keep things clear and clean but we still put it away and helped out. even though we don't have stairs, we still have an "as-you" pile for "as-you" walk by, take it and put it away!

Sm√•englenes verksted March 7, 2010 at 8:31 AM  

wow - great suggestions, I wish I would always do all of these. I try to follow flylady - flylady.net - she also knows her stuff

Menopausal New Mom March 7, 2010 at 8:31 AM  

My favorite trick that I learned from Martha is how to keep my stainless steel pots sparkling. They used to get what looked like streaks or soap stains, almost like an oil slick look that I couldn't remove no mater how many times I washed them. Well simple solution:

Slice a lemon, rub it around on the inside of the pot, rinse and sparkles like new and no chemical cleaners!

I do this every time before I put my pots away now, just keep a special lemon half in the fridge in a baggie that no one else touches and replace it about once a week.


Kim @ NewlyWoodwards March 7, 2010 at 9:50 AM  

These are great tips. I didn't know about the carpet dents.

Everyone thinks I'm a clean freak, but really I just employ a few small things, mostly those things above, to keep the house mostly picked up. It makes a big difference to have things picked up and wiped up. And, then I spend less time cleaning.

And, I really love Martha. =)

B-Dub March 7, 2010 at 10:04 AM  

I have tried implementing the no shoe policy for years. Too bad for me the hubs just won't go along with it. Aarrgg.

Funky Junk Interiors March 7, 2010 at 10:06 AM  

Great tips!

Mine is having a 3 tier basket at the top of the stairs. (our main living is upstairs)

Top basket is a stash for my office stuff, middle is for office paperwork (office in basement), and 3rd is garage stuff. Saves many in between steps and hides the mess nicely until we're going down there anyway.

And the old rule of keeping your sink clean seems to work too. You have a clean sink generally means you have a clean kitchen as they go hand in hand. I like this rule but that doesn't mean I follow it ALL the time. It's on the wish list! :)


Low Tide High Style March 7, 2010 at 11:11 AM  

Wonderful tips. I do all of them, except I rarely make my bed...maybe I should change that...nah! ;)

Kat :)

Gabrielle @ i.craft March 7, 2010 at 11:28 AM  

I love her... I just can't help myself... maybe it's because - well I just love her! But as far as what i do to keep things running smoothly:

1. I do all the hard stuff first.
2. If there is something I really want to get to like making something or working in my gardens, then I make a few goals to get done before I reward myself with fun work.
3. I remind myself that this household IS my job and that I'm privileged to do it. This keeps a smile on my face while herding the 7 people who live in my house! :)

Dawn March 7, 2010 at 11:42 AM  

Great tips indeed. What do I wish I could do to keep my house cleaner? Make my 2 teenage sons sleep in the YARD. Who KNEW what a mess they could make 5 minutes after I finish cleaning!!! Ugh!

Dondi March 7, 2010 at 12:05 PM  

These are awesome tips! I didn't know about the carpet dents.

The biggest thing I have a hard time with is the kitchen sink. I get so preoccupied with the rest of the house that I kinda ignore that one area.

As for the rest of it - I never leave a room empty handed. Something can always be picked up. And laundry gets folded & put away straight out of the dryer so that it doesn't end up piling up somewhere else. Our laundry baskets are actually now for the kids to use to transport their toys from the living room back to their bedrooms :)

I try to always keep in mind - if hubby brought a friend home, or a relative/neighbor/whoever showed up right now, would I be embarrassed with how my house looked? Would they be comfortable in my home? And that's how I base my cleaning. (i.e. the front gets done first & I work my way to the back)


Kristi M. March 7, 2010 at 12:38 PM  

My grandma told my mom a long time ago, and then she passed it onto me, is to always make your bed in the morning and do the dishes first. Everything else seems to fall into place and be easier to do. I've tried doing other things first and they never come as easy.

Diann March 7, 2010 at 1:53 PM  

I agree, love Martha or not, she has the best no nonsence approach. And she is no ashamed to tell the world keeping a nice home is a "Good thing"!

Nikki March 7, 2010 at 2:37 PM  

These are great tips. I am totally going to use the ice trick on the carpet! Last week I bought a mail/junk holder from Ikea, but that metal one from Pottery Barn is pretty cute. Maybe I need two? ;)

Fashion Gal March 7, 2010 at 4:14 PM  

Thank you so much for stopping by One Crafty Mommy and participating in Fashionable Fridays!

I love your post- what Excellent ideas! I am a firm believer in making the bed, because it sets the tone for the rest of the day. :)

I really need to work on cleaning the dished while I'm cooking...I have a ton waiting to be cleaned from lastnight's feast hehehe!


kmetzsch007 March 7, 2010 at 5:33 PM  

This whole post was like reading scripture. I do all these things and believe they are my sanity in so many ways. I don't always take things downstairs with me but I do have a bag I keep at the top of the stairs for those things, mostly toys, so they're hidden away and easy to put away when I feel so inclined.
I also have tried the ice cube trick which did work and I only wish I could get some new furniture so I could use that trick again. Anyway, I love any and all orginazational tips and cleaning rules because I'm always happy for the reminder or a new suggestion/idea.

kajr March 8, 2010 at 8:30 AM  

Going to have to try the carpet dent trick. We've lived in our home for over a year and still have dents in the carpet from the previous owner.

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