How to manage Spring cleaning? How to Spring clean well – when you hate to clean?
It’s simple, really. You have only to follow my lead… And trust me, I’m expert at this (having attempted to spring clean more times than I care to say), having only recently discovered the (latest) secret to my (soon-to-be) success, despite my avowed distaste for cleaning, convinced my renovated route to Spring cleaning bliss may be just what you’ve been waiting for.
It’s as easy as 1-2-3 – with a few tricks and twists!
Tips on How to Spring Clean, Step by Step
Sizing up your task may be overwhelming. Even in a small space (like mine), if you focus on everything that needs to be done it can all be a bit daunting.
If it’s morning, fix yourself a Bloody Mary. If the fridge is too overrun to find celery, there’s always the classic itself – tomato juice and vodka. No Bloody Mary mix of any sort to add?
Remember. This isn’t about the best Bloody Mary on the planet; it is about easing into your Most Dreaded Task, Your Most Loathed Undertaking, the Annual Oh-So-Blues-Inducing Spring Cleaning.
Pick one corner. One little corner where you can make a difference. For example. All those paper bags you’ve been saving so as to save the planet?
Stop rationalizing that they’re installation art. Pick up your Whole Foods bags (or Kroger or wherever) and fold them. Next, place them somewhere they will actually be returned to the store for reuse, or in your recycling bin.
Drink half your Bloody Mary. Sip if you must, but consume quickly and in sufficient quantity to obliterate your snarling mood and replace it with calm. Do remember that tomato juice is very healthy!
Picture the Get Me Zesty Guy without his shirt on. Of course, he always ends up without his shirt on, and must possess the Single Most Beautiful Male Torso in the world.
Why is this helpful with Spring Cleaning?
It distracts you from the kitchen floors, the dust on the blinds, the cinders in the fireplace, the cobwebs that are clinking to the moldings you cannot reach even with the pole and mop designed to do exactly that.
Not sure who I’m talking about?
The fine gentleman pictured above. Do “click” him for a larger view. He won’t mind.
Smiling now? (I am.)
Prepare Your Cleaning Supplies
Now that you are in a better mood – after all, you’ve already begun – assemble your cleaning supplies. (Now come on. You know you have some.)
The following list may remind you what I’m talking about if it’s been as long for you as it has for me:
- Wipes, paper towels, or cloths
- Sponges, steel wool pad if needed
- Trash bags (or boxes)
- Close friend who is less sentimental to assist with ruthless shedding
- Aspirin and / or more tomato juice and vodka to assist when aforementioned friend starts sorting and tossing
- Cleaning solutions to include but not limited to products for counters, floors, table tops, moldings
- rubber gloves of your choice if you like your skin
Do check expiration dates. Anything prior to 2009? Toss it. Damn. I just chucked a few bottles and boxes from 2008. I bet it was a good year… for everything except cleaning.
Find your bucket and mop. (Under the sink? In the basement? Shoved in a closet beneath the Hefty bag of kids’ clothes from 2005?)
Pick Your Battles (and Your Fantasy Guests)
Pick one area that you see daily and that bugs you. Just one. Start small. (Isn’t this true when tackling any unpleasant or complex project?)
For example, zero in on one hall table where you throw keys and mail. Remember what a wood surface looks like? Now that you have unearthed your Pledge and dust cloth (or paper towel that you can dampen), wouldn’t you feel fantastic if you could sort through the mail, the video game controllers that have been sitting on the ad circulars for the past three years, and whatever else is buried there?
If you must, gulp down the remaining Bloody Mary, make another, and picture welcoming the Zesty Guy into your home with no embarrassment as he pauses at your hall table. Consider inviting your Kind Friend to enjoy the view as well.
Now dig in. Just do it. Sort and dispose. Fight tears with friendly cheering or Bloody Mary.
If all else fails, pull out a favorite magazine and breathe deeply while taking in the beauty of a space you love. Is it impeccably uncluttered? Maybe so. Perhaps it’s chic, streamlined, your dream environment even if a small space. Then again, maybe it’s real, lived-in, entirely habitable, and inspiring.
Now turn the page. View smart ways to store items you wish to keep. But don’t linger. This is intended to be motivation, not procrastination.
Finish the hall table. Feel the satisfaction. Check the hour, check the status of your friendship, check the fridge for tomato juice.
Stay tuned for more tips soon, this time, accompanied by Mimosas.
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