Spring Cleaning for Busy Lifestyles

Family, work, and many other obligations easily fill your daily schedule leaving very little time for spring cleaning. No one wants to spend a long stressful weekend chasing dust bunnies, but you don’t want to live with them either. The only way to get the dreaded job over with is to make it as efficient and painless as possible.

Spring Cleaning

The Organization Process

A detailed list of each room will ensure that nothing is missed during your spring clean. If you start at the highest point away from the door and make a separate list for each area, the list will be easier to work with later on. Hallways, entryways, storage spaces, and the exterior areas of your home should also be included in your lists.

Once your list is complete, make a note of the products and tools you will need for each job. This way, you can purchase any items you don’t have on hand with one trip to the store. The list of supplies will also prevent distractions by allowing you to gather all of the items you need before you start. You can divide your cleaning lists to match the time you have available, or you can give one list to each of your helpers.

Time Saving Tips

Try to limit the number of cleaners needed to get the job done. A combination of vinegar, Borax, and tea tree oil, works great as an all-purpose cleaner when it is mixed in an ice cream pail of water. Fabric softener sheets work well to clean the mirror. Fabric softener sheets can also be placed in with your towels to keep them smelling fresh and clean.

Rarely used items can be stored in plastic containers or baskets and kept in hard to reach areas. As you go through your household items, throw out any items that are broken or outdated and bag items that you no longer use for charity or a garage sale.

Because the items will need to be moved anyway, spring cleaning is also a great time to rearrange your furniture or kitchen items. Plan everything out ahead of time an draw our a diagram. This way you will only have to move everything once because you know where everything needs to go.

Silk flowers and wreathes can look like brand new after a quick clean. These pieces can be vacuumed off with a few thicknesses of nylons stretched over the end of the hose, or they can be shook in a paper bag with some table salt.

Many window coverings can be machine-washed and hung to dry, just be sure to check the care instructions first. To help make sure that fabric window coverings hang nicely, add a small amount of liquid fabric softener to the water. For a heavy build up of grime, plastic blinds can be washed in a bathtub a little bit of dish detergent. If they only need a light dusting, some fleece fabric taped to a ruler works great to dust both sides of the slats.

Windows can be a never-ending battle against streaks. However, if you wash them vertically on the outside and horizontally on the inside, you will be able to tell which side of the window is the culprit. Using a solution of vinegar with a splash of ammonia will also help to eliminate streaks. If you don’t have ammonia, dishwasher rinse agent is a great substitute.

Leaving the vacuuming and shampooing for last will also help to save some time. This will pick up any dirt or cleaners that may have been left behind. Vacuums are also great for sucking the lint and dirt from exhaust fans, ductwork, and the inner workings of appliances.

How to Fit it all in and get Motivated

Spring-cleaning might be necessary, but it doesn’t have to be completed all at once. It can be divided up by room, equipment, or by where you need to be at the time. The work can also be adjusted to suit your schedule and activities. For instance, if you want to watch a particular movie, you can clean your living room. Another option is to do one job a night, one room a week, or schedule in one day a month, this way it breaks the chore up into segments that are more manageable.

To lighten the workload, listen to music, watch you favorite show on television, or find someone to help you. Create a cleaning group with friends or neighbors where everyone helps to clean each other’s houses. Get your children involved by playing games and giving them prizes. For example, they receive a marble in a jar for each job they complete and two marbles for completing it the fastest. When they get twenty marbles in the jar, they could then be allowed to have an extra hour of television.

Spring-cleaning doesn’t have to be a nightmare. You can make it as easy as possible by using the methods that work best for you with the least amount of effort. Once the work is finished, you will feel much better relaxing in a fresh clean house.

Maintaining Your Lifestyle in the Recession

The news from 7 others that we all need entertainment because the recession has effected millions of Americans across the country. Some people have had their hours cut down, others have lost their job completely. For those that did lose their job, some found work at other establishments that they are over qualified for, and others could not find work at all. If you happen to be someone that has been effected by the recession, you need to realize that you can maintain the lifestyle that you have been accustomed to by simply managing your money along with utilizing the skills you already have to your own advantage to gain extra income.


First things first. If you are currently completely out of a job, then you need to find something (ANYTHING) to supplement partially for the income you lost with your job. Even if the job you find doesn’t pay the same amount as the job you previously held, you need some sort of income coming in to not only pay your bills, but to also help you to make small and long term investments to gain more income. Try and first find a job related to the field you have the most experience in or a college degree in. Search in your own city and cities that are close enough you could commute to. If you can find a job where you have experience you hold the greatest chance of good pay. If no jobs in your field are available, begin searching in related fields or other fields you may have experience in. Don’t ever give up though, even if you settle for a job you have NO experience in, you need some sort of income coming in at all times.

Once your established with a job, you must manage your money wisely from the first pay check. Check every single service that you pay for monthly first and find a way to reduce costs. Monthly charges are the things you need constant money to maintain which is a direct correlation to the constant income you receive from your job. If you’re not making the same amount as you were before the recession, then you obviously cannot afford to maintain the services you did before the recession. There’s always room to cut costs, and the more you save every month is the more money you will have to invest into other ventures on the side to supplement for the income you may have lost from the recession. Subscribe to less channels from your TV provider, pay close attention and use less water, search for cheaper car and health insurance, lower cell phone plan minutes or features, use air conditioning and other heavy power consumption devices less to lower electricity bill, cut back the internet speed.. there’s so many things you can do to lower the money that comes straight out of your pay check right when you receive it. You have to save money each and every chance you get!

If you’re managing your money to it’s full extent, you should still have some left over after you pay all your bills and take care of everything you need to for the month. Rather than spend this money on unnecessary things, you need to think of ways to invest this money to bring you back much more on return. Just like when you’re looking for a job, think of things you have experience in when you plan on investing money. If you were a plumber working for a large company and lost your job in the recession and are now working in a fast-food chain, you should be saving the money you earn from the fast food job and invest it into plumbing business ventures. Start off by buying a business license to legally own your own business and go from there! Let everyone you know that outside of your other jobs hours, you’ll be working independently. Again using the plumber for an example, the plumber could work at his fast food job and let all his friends and family know that if they have plumbing needs, he can help them outside of his fast food job hours and do it at a rate cheaper than the average plumber would cost. People would rather call their friends for their plumbing needs, and now the plumber has more money to invest into his plumbing venture!

That’s just one example of how someone could invest their money though. Not everyone held a job that they could do on the side like the plumber example. If this happens to be the case for you, then you need to find other ways to invest money. Long term investments, such as a CD from the bank, are always profitable if you have enough money to put up for that long period of time. Most people aren’t able to put up any large amount of money like that for 5 years or however long the CD agreements are. If that’s your case, then don’t give up. Just get creative. In your spare time you could cut lawns around your neighborhood or around the town. You could find another low paying job to work a couple days a week with different hours from your full time job. Hold a yard sale to get rid of anything you don’t use anymore! Put the items that don’t sell on eBay. You have to realize that every thing is an investment, and the more money you have to put in that investment the larger return on investment.