Monday, October 13, 2014

31 Days to An Organized and Clean Home Day 5

So far, we've covered a wide range of topics. If you want to start at the beginning, check out this post.

Today's Focus:

The laundry! Oh, it can be such a beast. But, over the years, I've learned some really awesome tips. Here's a few that should help get your laundry looking fresh and crisp!

  • For heavily soiled clothing, soak in cold water for 30 minutes.This will help loosen any dirt and other residue. 
  • For moldy or musty clothes, add a cup of vinegar to your wash. 
  • Always soak stains before adding to the wash.
  • If your laundry is looking dull, just add a 1/2 cup of baking soda!
  • Set a timer for your dryer if it doesn't have one. Always pull out the close as soon as finished, so that they don't wrinkle. 
  • Have static electricity in your clothes? Just pop them back in the dryer with a damp wash rag.
  • Run out of laundry detergent, but need to wash a load? Just mix up 1 cup of vinegar and 1/2 cup baking soda to replace detergent. 
What are some of your favorite laundry tips?

Monday, October 6, 2014

31 Days to An Organized and Clean Home Day 4

Happy Monday! Ready to continue the series?

Today's Challenge:

Let's focus on organizing our grocery shopping & coupon experience. By following the tips below, you will be able to take full advantage of shopping with a purpose while saving money.

  • Always go through your pantry, freezer, and fridge to see what you need.
  • Next, you will be ready to create a meal plan. Try once a week meal planning or once a month meal planning to see which one fits your needs best.
  • When you finish your meal plant, you can begin writing your list.
  • Once your list is complete go through your coupon inserts and/or print them. See if your list items match up with any store sales/coupons. 
  • At the store, learn to shop the perimeter of the store: produce, meat, dairy. Then, tackle the middle aisles. By doing this, you'll b less tempted to get distracted with non-necessary items.
  • Learn to set a timer for your grocery shopping: 30 minutes tops. By doing so, you'll cut down time to just "look". Looking often turns into buying things you don't need.
  • Before you get in line, double check your list and pull out your coupons.
  • Always double check your receipt to make sure you were not overcharged or savings were left off. It happens a lot!
  • After unloading the groceries, and putting them all away, double check your car to make sure nothing rolled out of your bags. Nothing worse than an item left to ruin!
What are some of your favorite grocery shopping tips?

Friday, October 3, 2014

31 Days to An Organized and Clean Home

Good morning! Hopefully, you enjoyed the last couple of days as we explore 31 days to an organized and clean home.

Today's Challenge: Take a few minutes to make your home smell fresh and inviting. If the weather permits, consider opening the windows and enjoy the fresh breeze while you tidy around the house.

  • To keep your air fresh and smelling clean, be sure to change out the fiters on a regular schedule Also, vacuume out the vents a couple of times a year.
  • To help your home smell inviting, add a few drops of vanille onto a saucepan with just an inch of water. Let it simmer for a while to a delicious aroma. 
  • For neatralizing carpet or rug order, sprinkle with baking soda and let it sit for half an hour before vacuuming it up.
  • To keep your drawers smelling fresh, hide extra bars of soap (still in wrapper) underneath your clothes.
  • Cut dryer sheets in half and place inside shoes to keep your closet from smelling like a gym. ;)
What are some of your favorite tricks to a better smelling home?

Thursday, October 2, 2014

31 Days to An Organized and Clean Home Day 2

Good morning! Ready to tackle another awesome cleaning and organizing project? Today, we will be focusing on the kitchen.

Today's Challenge:

Clean out your kitchen!

  • Remove everything off the counter tops. Wipe them down with a disinfectant. Replace items that are necessary.
  • Remove everything from your fridge. Wipe down the shelves. Throw away anything that's old or out dated. 
  • Wash your cabinets with cleaning solution (be sure to double check that it's safe for wood).
  • Go through your dishes, pans, etc. Get rid of anything you haven't used in a year.
  • Clean all your appliances: stove, microwave, etc.
Frugal Tip: If you notice that your fridge has an odor, pour baking soda into a small bowl and leave it overnight. It will help neutralize the odor. 

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

31 Days To an Organized & Clean Home {Day 1}

October is here! It's my favorite time of year. The air is crisp, the holidays are around the corner...and I'm ready to tackle fall cleaning. This month I'm challenging myself to take organizing and cleaning to the next level. My hope is that November and December will be met with a renewed vigor thanks to a smoother running household.

Care to join me? Here's a list at things I'll be tackling:

  • Frugal hacks for organizational items
  • Cheap alternatives to cleaning solutions
  • Organizational challenges for each room of the house 
  • Organizing "out of sight" areas
  • Deep cleaning my heart & mind

Today's Challenge:

Clean out your purse! Dump everything out. Sort the receipts and keep any that you may need in the future. Go through old coupons and make sure none of them are out of date. Dump your change in the piggy bank, and throw away any trash. Scale your items down to "must have" only. Wipe down the inside of your bag and replace items. Be sure to spot clean any areas on your purse if needed. 

Frugal tip: Purchase a coupon folder at the dollar store to keep in your purse. It's the perfect location to sort coupons, gift certificate, rebates, business cards and other important receipts. 

Check back in tomorrow...we'll be tackling the kitchen!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Why I Don't Use Cloth Diapers

A lot of folks have tried to sway me over to the word of cloth diapers. And while that may be the best choice for others, I knew it wasn't for us.

Here's a quick run down:

Time Saver: The biggest thing for me was the time factor. I didn't want to spend the extra time rinsing, pre-soaking, washing, etc.

Water Saver: If we had chosen cloth diapers, our laundry would have increased, which in short, would increase our water bill and time doing laundry. Which of course goes back to point #1.

Money Saver: Thanks to sales, stockpiling, and a diaper shower during my pregnancy, we have only paid a few dollars for our stash. We still have several months worth set aside. That's about 6 months worth of diapers for *very* little cost.

Stress Saver: Honestly, the idea stressed me out.

I'm still satisfied with our decision, and think it's best for us. How about you? Which option served your family better?

Monday, September 29, 2014

Simplify Your Life in Three Easy Steps

It seems life gets busier with each passing day, and sometimes that means more stress and exhaustion. I'm learnng to identify a few key steps that help me get ahead and feel more accomplished at the end of the day.

Tackle your biggest project at the beginning of the day...

For example, if it's your goal to deep clean your freezer, get it done right away. By tackling the largest and most cumbersome assignment of each day you will feel more accomplished and have more energy to tackle the smaller things.

Speed clean your home for at least fifteen minutes each day...

Depending on your schedule, make it your goal to speed clean your home whether it's through a blocked fifteen minutes or in five minute increments throughout the day. This helps you keep the clutter at bay, and you will be more likely to keep your focus without worrying about the state of your home.

Plan your dinner the night before...

Take a few minutes each night to plan your dinner for the following day. That way, if you need to thaw meat or soak beans, you'll have this done ahead of time. This will reduce that "4 O'Clock" dinner panic.

How do you simplify your life?