3050 Tipp Cowlesville Rd.
Tipp City, Ohio 45371

Spring Cleaning: Where Do I Start?!

 I need to do WHAT?!

I have to say that when presented with the topic of “Spring Cleaning” as a blog post, I was at a loss.  Yes, I know what Spring Cleaning is.  But I have to also say that when I was growing up, I don’t remember Spring Cleaning being a thing at our house. My mom was very particular about how things were cleaned on a weekly basis and, quite frankly, we didn’t need to Spring Clean! I remember Dad doing outside windows and screens, but that was the extent of it.

Unfortunately, I didn’t follow in my mom’s footsteps.  I struggle with having a weekly cleaning schedule at my house and my cleaning style tends to be, “We’re having company! We need to do a good clean in the living areas, the room they are sleeping in, and the bathroom they will be using!” I decided that a blog on Spring Cleaning would be a great opportunity for me to jump in and do some “adulting” and give our house a good Spring Cleaning. Not really having any idea where to start, I did some research on the internet.  I was amazed, and definitely overwhelmed, at what I found. But also a little hopeful that I COULD possibly incorporate Spring Cleaning into my life. I love the IDEA of Spring Cleaning and purging, I am just overwhelmed as to where to start.

Method to the Madness

As with anything else, there are tons of suggestions and schedules for Spring Cleaning! If you are a purist and prefer the deepest clean, no-surface-untouched approach to Spring Cleaning, this list found at idreamofclean.net {here} is for you!  There are 186 items on the list for JUST the inside of your house.  One hundred eighty-six!!   Another very detailed list can be found at www.imperfecthomemaking.com under the “A Thorough Spring Cleaning List” tab.  I knew I was in trouble when the first sentence on this Spring Cleaning list was, “I *LOVE* spring cleaning”.  Oi.

As I said before, I struggle with simply having a good cleaning schedule in general so I am totally intimidated by these massive Spring Cleaning lists. I fully expected the Martha Stewart Spring Cleaning Checklist {here} to be off the charts, but I actually found it to be the most sensible for me and it included some great advice for cleaning every surface of the home. I think this will be a great place for a Spring Cleaning-newbie to start once the weather breaks and we are able to throw open the windows and air the house out.  Let’s just say that Spring has been less-than cooperative in Ohio this year, so I can totally use that as an excuse for not doing Spring Cleaning yet, right? It DOES say “Spring” in the name so I should probably wait.  🙂

Baby Steps

Still overwhelmed at the idea of adding additional cleaning chores? Let’s start small. In researching the whole concept of Spring Cleaning, I came across various resources that talked about the germiest surfaces in the home. I will list the top ten, but for brevity, I’ll include cleaning tips that I found for only the top five. This will be a great start to Spring Cleaning and is on my “To Do” (“Honey-do?!”) list this weekend. Be prepared to be grossed out!

10.   Cutting boards:  18% harbor coliform bacteria {definition} and 14% contain molds and yeast

9.     Stove knobs:  14% have coliform bacteria and 27% harbor molds and yeast

8.     Kitchen counters:  32% harbor coliform and 18% molds and yeast

7.     Pet toys:  23% of pet toys were found to harbor potentially dangerous staph bacteria. Yeasts and molds were found in 55% of the toys.

6.     Faucet handles:  Coliform was found on 9% of bathroom faucets in addition to molds found on 27% and staph on 5%.

Even Smaller Baby Steps!

And now for the top 5 germiest places in your home and suggestions on how to clean them!

5.     Coffeemakers:  50% of coffeemakers have yeast and mold growing in them and 9% have coliform bacteria. To clean, fill the water chamber with equal parts water and vinegar. Using a paper coffee filter, brew half of the cleaning solution and then let sit for 30 minutes. Finish brewing the cleaning solution and throw away the filter.  To rinse, brew a full chamber of clean water through a new paper filter.

4.     Pet bowls:  45% have mold and yeast and 18% have coliform bacteria. Soak the bowl once a week in a solution of 1 capful of bleach in 1 gallon of water and rinse.

3.     Toothbrush holder:  27% have coliform bacteria, 14% have staph, and 64% have yeast and mold. Hand wash the container in hot soapy water once a week or run it through the dishwasher.

2.     Kitchen sink:  45% of sinks have coliform bacteria and 27% have molds. Use a mixture of 1 tsp bleach in a quart of water to wipe down the sink. Pour the remaining solution down the drain. To clean the disposer, put 1/2 cup baking soda into the drain and pour in 1 cup vinegar. Let the solution sit in the drain while you boil a pot of water. Pour the water into the drain. Place 2 cups of ice into the drain and sprinkle 1 cup of salt over the ice. Run the disposal until the ice is gone to help loosen debris on the blades. Finally, cut a lemon or lime into quarters. With the disposal running, add one piece at a time to the disposal and run until empty to freshen the disposal.

1.     Kitchen sponges:  86% of kitchen sponges contain mold and yeast. To clean, microwave wet sponges for two minutes a day. Replace every two weeks.  Dishcloths should be changed every two days.

There is hope!

No matter your level of cleaning skill, cleaning at least the five germiest places in your home ought to make your home cleaner and more healthy.  My goal is to tackle all ten of the items listed above.  I am hopeful that once I have taken care of these items, I will be inspired and will be ready to make the jump into Spring Cleaning with Martha by my side!