January 7, 2009

January 7, 2009

Posted in cleaning, daily to do lists, shopping tagged , , , , , , at 10:32 am by allisonwonder

Yesterday was pretty much a bust. Aside from getting groceries (and forgetting to take my list) and doing a few dishes, I was too damn tired to do anything.I did get some Christmas ornaments ridiculously cheap at the grocery store, though, and they actually fit in with the look I want to go for next year, which is good… also picked up some highly discounted wrapping paper (74 cents, down from $2.99) that’s not actually Christmas-themed, so I can use it all year, and some non-Christmasy “Christmas” ribbon for my cards… which are online now- http://dandeliondaisy.etsy.com

To Do:

dishes

wipe down kitchen counters & take care of stains

clean microwave (smells like cheese sausage)

wash floors (steam mop)

toilets

tidy living room/ dining room

cook supper (3-cheese macaroni)

scoop out litter box

clean bathtub

tidy basement play area

finish making mom’s birthday present

make beds

wash AJ’s work clothes

bake bread- buy butter first. :S

January 5, 2009

January 5th, 2009

Posted in cleaning, daily to do lists tagged , , , , , at 10:04 am by allisonwonder

Yeah, yesterday wasn’t so productive, but you know what? That’s OK. I was tired, the boys were tired and cranky… at least we managed to get out to buy apple juice, and I didn’t give in to the temptation to get McDonald’s for lunch or supper. I made fettuccine with tomato sauce and shrimp last night- not bad.

I also got birthday cards made for a few more February family birthdays. I enjoy playing with my paper, ribbons, beads and glue sticks, but it’s not easy to do it unless the boyzos are in bed- otherwise I have curious little hands all over my stuff. It’s also a hassle to go downstairs, pick out whatever I think I’ll want to use (I don’t work from patterns or instructions), toss it all in a box, and bring it upstairs… and then haul it all back down when I’m done. This is one of the reasons Ike and Simon were going to be sharing a bedroom- AJ and I need a room for our stuff. The desk, his toys, maybe even the movies… my card-making stuff. I’m working on an area in the basement where I can work, but we’re not down there much right now.

There’s lots to do again today:

Today’s To Do:

Kitchen

dishes (as needed)

sweep

wipe countertops and sink

stains, spills and smudges


Bathroom

wipe sink and shower after use

hang up towels

put bath toys away

wipe counter and floor as needed


Living Room/ Dining Room

sweep floors, spot clean messes

tidy floor and flat surfaces

take baskets to appropriate rooms

Bedrooms

make beds

laundry in hampers


Basement

litter box- quick scoop

food and water for cats

 

Other:

laundry

groceries

activity planning for this week (at least one planned activity for the boys per day)

 

 

January 4, 2009

Today

Posted in cleaning, daily to do lists tagged , , at 11:40 am by allisonwonder

I’m posting today’s list seperately from that last post about last night- wouldn’t want to run too long, would we?

I’m too darn tired to do much this morning; Simon was up at 1:00 this morning, and he was up in the living room until about 5:00, when he fell asleep on the couch. In the meantime, he asked for a few different movies to be put on, spple juice, toast, “fwends” (stuffed toys)… I think he only had me up 5 times there. Then Ike woke up a few times, too- good times, good times. At least everything’s still looking pretty good after last night.

Today’s To Do:

Kitchen

dishes (as needed)

sweep

wipe countertops and sink

stains, spills and smudges


Bathroom

wipe sink and shower after use

hang up towels

wipe counter and floor as needed


Living Room/ Dining Room

sweep floors, spot clean messes

tidy floor and flat surfaces

take baskets to appropriate rooms

Bedrooms

make beds (change our bedsheets back to the ones that actually have elastic at the corners!)

laundry in hampers


Basement

litter box- quick scoop

food and water for cats

 

Other

meal and activity planning for next week

 

January 3, 2009

January 3, 2009

Posted in cleaning, daily to do lists at 2:05 pm by allisonwonder

Oooh- it’s my brother’s birthday! I guess I should call him or something.

We’re having company for supper tonight- AJ’s trainer will be over when they’re done work. I was going to make this really yummy slow-cooker roast chicken I have a recipe for, but I realized at 9:00 that it takes 10 hours to cook, so it should’ve been in by 8 at the latest. No problem- I’ll make this instead.

In spite of the fact that I cleaned the house yesterday, it needs to be done again. I’m NOT washing the floors again, even if they are all smudged up. I’d like to try to get Simon to help tidy up, but really, that would take more time than just doing it myself.

Speaking of doing stuff with the kids, I think that’s my New Year’s resolutio- to spend more time focusing on the kids. There’s always something else I could or “should” be doing, and I have trouble focusing on any one thing for more than a few minutes at a time, but I’m going to do my best to let go of my natural multi-tasking ways when it’s play time and just focus on the boys. It’s something that AJ’s naturally very good at- he jokes that it’s because he’s just a big kid anyway. I say he’s just a good dad.

So, here’s today’s list:

 

Kitchen

dishes (as needed)

sweep

wipe countertops and sink

stains, spills and smudges

 

Bathroom

wipe sink and shower after use

hang up towels

put bath toys away

wipe counter and floor as needed

clean toilets, mirrors, tub

 

Living Room/ Dining Room

sweep floors, spot clean messes

tidy floor and flat surfaces

take baskets to appropriate rooms

change tablecloth, set table

 

Bedrooms

make beds

laundry in hampers

sweep

 

Basement

litter box-full scoop

food and water for cats

January 2, 2009

See? This is what I’m talking about…

Posted in cleaning, family, Uncategorized tagged , , at 11:24 pm by allisonwonder

Remember when I said that Ike is wired for destruction? He’s a 10-month old demolition expert- and I have photographic proof.

This was his big (though not his only) project for the morning:

dsc07811 Yeah… that used to be the recycling pile. I’m sure he was just helping me get it out so I could put it in boxes.

And then I swept, swiffered and washed the floors. I started with the living room, then did the dining room, and then moved on to the kitchen. And then I went back into the living room to put the furniture back in the right spots, and Ikezilla was at it again.

dsc07825  Those would be his Daddy’s DVDs- Daddy’s not too happy when those end up all over the floor. Just another reason I’m watching kijiji for some storage units with doors on them!

He’s trouble, alright, but there are a few things that make it a bit easier to deal with him than it might otherwise be. for one thing, he’s my baby, and I love him. And then there’s this face of his:

dsc07815  I mean, really- would you be able to get mad at that guy for being curious and busy?

 

Of course, his brother’s not exactly a saint in that area, either- he can make a pretty good mess, too.

dsc07818

This, my friends, is why I don’t try to have a perfect-looking house. It’s not possible, and it’s no fun. Passable would be nice, though. 🙂

January 1, 2009

Ikezilla Strikes Again

Posted in cleaning, daily to do lists, food at 11:57 am by allisonwonder

Is it possible for a child to be hardwired for destruction and mess-making? If so, Isaac is practically a prodigy. He likes to follow me around the house, un-tidying as he goes, unrolling the toilet paper, knocking over garbage cand, and unloading the recycling all over the kitchen floor. If there’s food left out anywhere, it’s a safe bet that he’ll not only find it, but that he’ll manage to spread it over the floor in at least a 3-foot radius all around his cute little self.

dsc07800 I can actually see me being able to stay on top of everything here if I didn’t have these little people around. Heck, I’d have more than enough time to get everything done… I’d probably even be able to cook a nice meal every night and even get the exercise I so desperately need… but I wouldn’t trade them for anything.

Speaking of messes, we’re getting a heck of a lot of snow dumped on us right now. This would be very exciting, I’m sure, if I liked snow, but it’s really just making me want to hibernate.

*     *     *

On to today… the house is looking good right now- we’ll see how long that lasts. I might have time to bake that banana bread.  A nap is actually higher on my list of priorities, but seems highly unlikely. I still don’t know if we’re having company for supper or not…

 

Kitchen

dishes (as needed)

sweep

wipe countertops and sink

stains, spills and smudges

 

Bathroom

wipe sink and shower after use

hang up towels

put bath toys away

wipe counter and floor as needed

 

Living Room/ Dining Room

sweep floors, spot clean messes

tidy floor and flat surfaces

take baskets to appropriate rooms

 

Bedrooms

make beds

tidy

laundry in hampers

 

Basement

tidy toys and craft area after use

litter box- quick scoop

food and water for cats

 

Other:

cook supper    (quiche)

thank-you card (see yesterday)

December 31, 2008

Wednesday, December 31- Daily to Do List, Plus Yesterday’s Pics

Posted in cleaning, daily to do lists, laundry/ clothing, product reviews tagged , , , at 2:45 pm by allisonwonder

Ugh- this computer is unbelievably sluggish today. Don’t get me wrong, I know the feeling, but I had a migraine yesterday- what’s your excuse, NetVista?

Speaking of yesterday, here are the before, during and after photos of my grout cleaning job (I know, the lighting stinks, but you get the idea):

dsc07801

 

 

 

 

 

<before

dsc07799 < baking sodadsc07797<after

Can you see a difference? Some of the darkest spots are gone, but that’s about it. we’ll try again next week.

As for that Method Daily Shower spray there… it’s OK. I like it a lot better than spraying nasty, less-natural chemicals into the bathroom air, but it smells a bit like hairspray. Tigger, however, LOVES the stuff- they’re practicallya couple:

dsc07807

OK, on to today’s list:

 

Kitchen

dishes (as needed)

sweep

wipe countertops and sink

stains, spills and smudges

clean microwave

clean out fridge

wipe down appliances

tidy cupboards

 

Bathroom

wipe sink and shower after use

hang up towels

put bath toys away

wipe counter and floor as needed

wash towels

 

Living Room/ Dining Room

sweep floors, spot clean messes

tidy floor and flat surfaces

take baskets to appropriate rooms

 

Bedrooms

make beds

tidy

laundry in hampers

change bedding

 

Basement

tidy toys and craft area after use – didn’t use- still a mess

litter box- quick scoop

food and water for cats

finish laundry

Other:

write thank-you note to the nice couple from the in-laws’ church who gave us a Christmas present

walk to post office- –  nope- had AJ go instead 🙂

make mom’s birthday card

put Christmas boxes in basement

*also planted bulbs in a pot (narcissus) to grow indoors, vacuumed the couch and washed the kitchen floor. We might have company tomorrow night, so I want to have as much done now as I can.*

December 30, 2008

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Posted in cleaning, daily to do lists, laundry/ clothing, shopping tagged at 2:41 pm by allisonwonder

To Do: 

Kitchen

dishes (as needed)

sweep

wipe countertops and sink

stains, spills and smudges

 

Bathroom

wipe sink and shower after use

hang up towels

put bath toys away

wipe counter and floor as needed

clean toilets, sinks, counters, mirrors and tub

steam-mop floors

 

Living Room/ Dining Room

sweep floors, spot clean messes

tidy floor and flat surfaces

take baskets to appropriate rooms

roll up the damn rug and put it away for now

 

Bedrooms

make beds

tidy

laundry in hampers

 

Basement

tidy toys and craft area after use

litter box- quick scoop

food and water for cats

 

ALSO:

groceries

wal-mart

finish laundry  (almost)

 

OK, so the things that actually got done today are crossed off. I didn’t get through it all, but I think I did pretty well, especially considering the fact that I had a migraine today (complete with nausea- yummy!) AND I did the shopping with the kiddies in tow. They’re good boys.

I bought Borax today for the first time. I can’t remember what I’m supposed to use it for, but I know it’s something. I also got a bigger box of baking soda, because I’m going through it rather quickly these days. I tried it on the grout in the bathroom today; i have “before” and “after” pictures, but they look the same to me. I know the wall’s clean, but my grout’s not sparkling, dammit! Oh- this book says I can try Borax on that. Excellent.

OK, I’m off to take more Advil and put myself to bed. It’s 10:00- late for me on a night when AJ’s working. Tomorrow’s Fridge Clean-Out Day… I hope the excitement doesn’t keep me up all night…

 

Housekeeping Schedule- First Draft

Posted in cleaning, laundry/ clothing, Waste Disposal tagged , , , at 2:28 pm by allisonwonder

It’s pretty clear to me that I’m incapable of keeping on top of stuff without some kind of schedule. I’m forgetful, and let’s face it- there are many things I’d rather be doing than cleaning the tile grout in the bathroom. One of my christmas presents this year was a book called “Green Clean” by Linda Mason Hunter and Mikki Halpin (thanks, Jenny and Chris!), and I’ve modified the suggested daily/ weekly/ monthly tasks from that book to reflect what I think will need to be done around here. I’m sure some of this will change, but for now, my goal is to stick to this for a month and then re-assess things.

So, for now, here’s the daily To-Do list:

  • kitchen: dishes (as needed); sweep; wipe down counters and stovetop; stains, spills and smudges (as needed); clean sinks; take out compost (as needed)
  • bathroom: wipe shower/ tub dry after use; hang towels to dry; put bath toys away; wipe down counter and sink
  • living room/ dining room: sweep floors, spot clean messes; tidy and return items to where they belong;
  • bedrooms: make beds; tidy; laundry in hampers
  • basement: tidy play area; scoop out kitty litter; feed cats

Sounds like plenty to me, especially when there are other tasks that need to be done every week… oh, and then there’s the whole “looking after the kids” thing… and cooking…

The weekly To-Do list:

  • kitchen: clean out fridge; steam-mop floor; garbage and recycling; clean drains; wash rags and sponges; clean microwave
  • bathrooms: sweep and steam-mop; toilets; clean sinks, mirrors and fixtures; empty trash; wash towels
  • living room/ dining room: steam-mop floors; vacuum rug and furniture; clean inside of windows and computer screen; dust
  • bedrooms: wash bedding; dust; laundry; sweep floors
  • basement: sweep entire floor; empty litter bucket and take out

Monthly tasks:

  • kitchen: wash out compost bucket (this would be weekly if we weren’t using paper bin liners); wash inside of fridge; clean oven; clean small appliances;straighten cupboards
  • bathrooms: drain maintenance; wash shower curtain and bath mat; clean grout
  • living room/ dining room: clean under furniture; wash outside windows (as needed)
  • bedrooms: steam-mop floors; dust; air out pillows; vacuum mattresses
  • basement: empty and wash out litter box; steam-mop floors; rotate toys 4x per year*

That’s it for now… any suggestions?

*These guys have PLENTY of toys. I try to keep some put away so I can rotate the selection occasionally- that way they have “new” stuff to play with, and they don’t get sick of everything.

December 17, 2008

Product Review*: Natura Cleaner & Cloth

Posted in cleaning, product reviews tagged , , , , at 9:41 am by allisonwonder

Home Hardware carries a line of cleaning products called “Natura”- they’re cleaning products that contain natural ingredients, though the lack of an ingredients list on this or any cleaner means I don’t know whether it’s “all-natural” or not. That said, at least it doesn’t scream “ANTI-BACTERIAL!!!” at me, and that scores points right away. 🙂 Spray-cleaner, soft cloths, laundry detergent, dish detergent, toilet cleanerbamboo clothespins if you’re in the market for some.

I’ve only tried two of these products so far: the all-purpose Natura Cleaner and the Natura Cloth.

The cleaner’s been able to handle anything I’ve thrown at it so far**. It’s made with Australian Tea-Tree oil, which I’ve heard is also useful for reducing pimples and boils (the oil, NOT the cleaner!) thanks to its natural antiseptic properties. This cleaner smells AMAZING, too- maybe even amazing enough to convery this gal from her method lavender cleaning spray.

$4.97 for 650 mL

Now, the Natura Cloth- this thing is quite amazing. I bought it to use on dishes, because the other cloths I’ve used always get so friggin’ SMELLY after they’ve been wet a few times, even if I remember to rinse them and hang them up. Cloths and sponges just seem to be breeding grounds for stinky bacteria. The commercials for this one said it wouldn’t stink… and that was, in fact, a speck of truth in advertising. Just as a test, I’ve kept using this one for several weeks without tossing it in the laundry, and it smells like the first time I used it (ie odourless). It’s nice and thick, too, and it has a bit of texture that’s good for scrubbing. Made from 100% natural wood fibre… yet really soft. Huh. Weird.

Please note that if you leave chunks of food stuck to this cloth, the food will start to smell. The cloth has antibacterial properties that keep the wee buggies from breeding in it, but it’s not going to spread that to anything it touches (counters, toilets, bits of crusty spaghetti). Rinse the damned thing, though, and it’s all good.

Natura Cleaning Cloth

$3.97,  40x40cm

VERDICT: I’m definitely going to try some of the other products from this line- most “natural” cleaners are way more expensive than these ones, and I’m happy with the performance so far. Incedentally, I know that vinegar’s a cheaper ‘natural’ cleaning fluid, but I can’t stand the smell it leaves behind. Blegh. Good on fries, though.

 

 

*For the record, I’m not getting anything for reviewing products- I’m just telling you about stuff that I paid good money for, letting you know whether I think it was money well-spent. I can tell you I’m more likely to try out natural products, but I’ll be honest about how well they’ve worked for me.

** technically, anything I’ve thrown it at, I guess.