Sunday, February 26, 2012

Day 54, 55 & 56: Blah, boring, blah

Unfortunately another boring post. I have had hurried and uneventful cleaning, waaaa!  Day 54 I washed our kitchen seat cushions and cleaned up after dinner because JW was out.   Day 55 I wiped some counters down and today Day 56 is not over but I woke up very early and swept the kitchen, cleaned our dining tables, rearranged Ely's red dining table, unloaded the dishwasher and cleaned up after making waffles….all before 8am.  And now I am on my way to strip our beds to wash the sheets! Oh and I cleaned the potty in Sunday school about 5 times.  Whew!  I hope this coming week I will finally make time to mop my kitchen floors!!! And do some thrilling cleaning for a change Smile

Friday, February 24, 2012

Day 53: Kitchen sweep

I know this is totally boring but perseverance often is super extremely boring and annoying.  I had  a full day that began at exactly 5 am, praise God for that! Wouldn’t you think that waking up at 5am would give me lots of cleaning time?? Nope. I worked out early, got Ely ready for Bible study then JW and I had a date to go to Winter Jam. When we got home (way after my new bedtime) I swept the kitchen. Isn't that so faithful?  I have wanted to mop my floors since Monday but have been prevented…so I swept again in hopes of mopping on Day 54. I will just have to wait and see.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Day 52: Patio, part 2 and then some

So this  morning when I stepped outside to see our patio, it was littered in leaves again! Ha! Oh well, but look how clean our bubble bucket is.

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The stroller is totally baby doll worthy now. (Though not a great picture)

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I had some help with the picnic table from Ely and her girlfriend Coco. Little girls cannot resist cleaning!

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I also gave some considerable TLC to our window seats. My window seats were previously extremely cluttered with all my teaching materials for Ely's alphabet lessons. I sorted, chunked and organized it all.  What you see here are highly organized and streamlined window seats. Really. Seriously. This is neat. It's my downstairs home office Smile 

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Count the bags on this seat…yeah baby, just one!!

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And perhaps my proudest DEcluttering today, I got a 3 drawer mobile organizer for the crazy overflow from Ely's educational materials. Maybe I can find things easier now.

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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Day 51: Patio cleaning, part 1

It was nearly 80 degrees in Cedar Park today. Praise the Lord!  With weather like this, it is a sin to stay indoors. Ely and I were playing when I noticed how gross all her outdoor toys are. The patio was  also in poor shape, littered with leaves and sand. And the furniture arrangement…a tragedy.  The weather motivated me to clean but also the fact that we have 2 gorgeous girlies coming over tomorrow and they happen to love playing with Ely outside!!  Who can play in such filth? Well actually they totally can but I need to clean!!

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Ely was trying to blow bubbles with her non spill bubble bucket we bought last summer but it wasn’t working. I was disgusted when I opened it and found a mysterious mixture of brown rain water and bubble solution. Eeeeeww!  Tomorrow it will be as clean as new. I immediately dumped out the brown water but you can see a little grime on the blue bucket base.

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The concrete pad I call a patio was covered in leaves and sand. I swept it all onto the grass. Don’t tell JW. I'm not sure if that’s good for the grass.

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Ely's little picnic table is also filthy and will be cleaned tomorrow.

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This poor little baby stroller…probably should have never been let outdoors but tomorrow it will once again be clean enough for a baby doll.  Can you tell I'm a sucker for extreme makeovers?

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And here is my gorgeous girl delighting herself in beating Foofa as hard as she can.

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And here is the after shot of the patio. Although I moved the slide OFF the concrete after I noticed a warning on it saying: Never place on hard surfaces. Oops. After a fun and soapy cleaning session tomorrow morning, we will be ready for our playdate!

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Monday, February 20, 2012

Day 49, 50 & 51: Uneventful cleaning…

Day 49: I swept the dining room, whoop- dee-doo.

Day 50:  Was actually interesting but not for cleaning purposes. I fasted from food all day so I struggled all day with fatigue and low blood sugar. So early in the day at Sunday school I made sure to be the one to sweep and wipe the bathroom down after class was out. Isn't that convenient?  I also cleaned my heart out to God during my fast Smile

Day 51: If yesterday I fasted, today I gorged. I really ate too much food, bleh.  I ate and and ate just out of compulsion!  Worse yet, I made a really yummy corn salsa and accidentally put 6 cloves of raw garlic in it!  I ate a lot of it then realized that eating that much raw garlic feels like pouring cement into my stomach. Part of why I ate too  much is because I kept trying to eat something to get rid of the awful taste on my tongue. Nothing works, not Jello, not chocolate, not dinner, not ice cream, not even brushing.

I felt yucky all day and did not feel like making a big cleaning production. Fortunately JW asked for a night off of cleaning up the kitchen so once again, saved by Provision. I cleaned everything up and had a scraping session with the stovetop. I used  a kitchen knife (don’t try this at home) because JW forgot to buy me a razor at Home Depot. He is not happy with me for using our kitchen knife to clean. Maybe now he will remember to buy my razor.  Our kitchen is sparkly…until morning.  Tomorrow I will read my Idiot book for inspiration because yet again it has left me high and dry.

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Friday, February 17, 2012

Day 48: Closet Purification

Yesterday I needed a fresh dose of motivation for my cleaning craze, so I read my Idiot book.  There is a page that offered some tips on cleaning out  a clothing closet. My closet is sometimes my prayer refuge and other times my dirty laundry disposal. It is out of control. And if it is messy, I do not feel like praying in there AND I never know what to wear!! Both situations are unacceptable to my life.  Here is a before picture.

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The book recommends taking EVERYTHING out of your closet. I am an extreme kind of girl so that sounded like a fabulous idea. It was important for me to start this project early in the day so that I had all day to work through the piles. I didn’t want JW to come home to the disaster but it happened anyway.  I took all the clothes out on this back wall and here is the bare result. Once it was empty I vacuumed and…drumroll please…cleaned the baseboards. I love cleaning baseboards. Does that make me weird?

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Here are the piles. Both my QuinceaƱera dress an my wedding dress are among the rubble. 

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Because I have become a Dust Hater, I sprayed a rag with all purpose cleaner and cleaned my shelf.

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The book recommended sorting everything in your closet in 3 piles: Keep, Toss and Give Away. I skipped the Toss pile and gathered about 40 garments to give to Goodwill.  The author also recommended sorting clothes according to use. For example, office clothes, work out clothes, etc.  But I am obsessed with rainbows….

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The author also recommended tossing out your shoe boxes and getting a shoe rack so shoes can dry more thoroughly. This step is hard for me because I love collecting and repurposing boxes but I cannot hoard 10 shoe boxes!   But fortunately I have a 3 tier shelf inside my closet that I was previously using for miscellaneous things. It is now my shoe rack/t shirt shelf.  Notice all the empty hangers above!  Just last week I was frustrated because I had run out of hangers, now my cup runneth over!

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I even found room for towel storage and purses with those bulky shoe boxes out of there. Don’t worry they will get recycled Smile.

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I am very excited about my now gorgeous closet. Now that I have a better idea of what clothes I have (and where they are) I am going to spend some time tomorrow putting outfits together so I don’t fret every time I have to get dressed. Fun!

Day 47: New cleaner!

Isn't it cute? It smells lovely. It is made with grapefruit seed and orange peel and I got it because it was the first orange cleaner that didn’t contain limonene, which may be toxic.  I sprayed my shower stall with it, let it sit for about 10 minutes then scrubbed it off with water. I think it did a pretty good job. I want to clean our bathroom counters with it too but had no time today because Ely and I were blessed with some company by Frances, Baby Z and Hattie. Ely didn’t know her grandmother would be stopping by for a visit. I have never seen that child so happy.

Since my baby friend Zachary was crawling all over the kitchen floor, I went ahead and swept it. Babies are great at pointing out where the dirty spots are! Not the most ambitious cleaning day but we had a great afternoon with Frances & Hattie. Especially since Frances and her hubby helped me figure out how to use my laptop as a phone!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Day 46: Cleaning is often hairy…at least for me.

I had started this job last week and today was so nice outside that I finished it and then some. I swept up our back porch.

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After I shook out our mat I noticed it was coated with a freaky layer of hair. It was mostly my hair because it was long and dark. How did it end up there??

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I was inspired by my Idiot book to think of a creative way to pick it all up. Duct tape is my friend.

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That is definitely my hair. I do not stand on my welcome mat and pull my hair out, I promise!

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The hairless  mat.

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And my Cinderella.

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While outside I also cleaned a couple of Ely's outdoor toys and 2 car windows. Then I went upstairs and tried to declog my bathroom sink drain because I clogged it with all of my…hair.  My Idiot book says to pour 1 cup of baking soda and 1 cup of vinegar down the drain to declog it. Wait a couple of hours and then pour lots of hot water down the drain too. My sink is less clogged so I may do another round of declogging on Day 47.  Day 47 I will tackle my shower stall with my new orange cleaner, yay!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Day 45: Sewing room love

Ever since the big party, my sewing room had been in awful condition.  I used my cutting table for the party and had not put it back in its place. The table sits against the windows and I didn’t want to put the table back until I had cleaned the pesky blinds.  Yesterday during Ely's nap I finally carved out some time and motivation to get dirty.

JW bought me this handy blinds cleaning tool at Home Depot last Sunday, but since my sewing room blinds hadn't been cleaned in…never, I quickly resorted to my sock cleaning method.  I think the blinds tool is great for regular cleaning. But if your blinds are dingy like mine were, you need socks!  What I liked most about this handy little green tool is that the microfiber cover is machine washable. I had also picked out several other tools but was only allowed to buy this one. Smile 

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My sewing room seemed brighter afterwards. I also did a little bit of dusting. My desk/sewing table is so cluttered right now that I have to wait to finish dusting until I can clear it off.

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If filling up surface area with projects were a sport I would probably compete in the Olympics. After cleaning and setting up my table, I quickly filled it with all my TO DO or rather TO CUT projects. These piles are actually educational materials and not junk, I promise. I had been storing these up (from my teaching days) for the right time. Or rather, I was waiting to have time to cut these materials out. Now I am all set up to sit down and cut in front of the TV when I get some….time.  But when I finally do, Ely and I will enjoy playing with them for her alphabet lessons.

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Monday, February 13, 2012

Days 43 & 44: Three toilets and biokleen.

Day 43 was a bit meager. I was extremely busy and remembered at bedtime that I had not cleaned anything! Then someone (must have been God) reminded me that I did clean the kids’ tables and sweep the floors in Sunday school! Yay! I didn’t clean anything in my house but I did clean something in God’s house.  It is a bit of a stretch but remember we are under grace! It was the Sabbath, after all.  Today I bought myself a very nerdy Valentine’s Day present.

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I had been using baking soda and vinegar. But I couldn’t resist a biokleen toilet scrub. I cleaned all 3 of our toilets today and let me just say, this stuff smells good! The scent made me feel like I was in a spa instead of cleaning toilets.  I also liked that the instructions said it wasn’t necessary to let the product sit before scrubbing.  My new toilet scrub uses natural Volcanic Perlite and Lime Peel Extracts to clean instead of stinky bleach. Loved it!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Days 41 & 42: Dust bunnies are nasty.

Day 41 was even more boring than Day 40. I cleaned the 3rd shelf in the fridge. Whoop-dee-doo.  Today however was very exciting. If exciting for you means, getting dirty.  During my quiet time I became inspired by something I read in Exodus about Aaron and decided to hang up Scripture in the living room. Strategically behind the television, to be precise. 

Anyhow, in order to tape the verses I had to move the TV. And you can guess what happened next.  Here is the discovery part of my process. The discovery of dust full-grown rabbits. Yuck.

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Warning: the following images are not suitable for germophobes or OCD clean freaks.

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I know this is all very graphic but this is a cleaning blog after all.

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This is our Jungle of Cables.  I vacuumed the Dust Monsters up then wiped all surfaces down with all purpose cleaner.  I cleaned the entirety of the entertainment system. The TV, the Play Station, the stereo, speakers, everything!  Then I tried a tip from Readers Digest. Afterwards, I wiped everything down with a used dryer sheet. Readers Digest claimed this helps prevent dust accumulation. We will see about that.

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And now I leave you with an encouraging verse I heard at Bible study this week. 

  These older women must train the younger women to love their husbands and their children, to live wisely and be pure, to take care of their homes, to do good, and to be submissive to their husbands. Then they will not bring shame on the word of God.

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I am definitely hard at work in my home. Now about that submissiveness business….

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Day 40: Refrigerator Part 2

This is the slowest refrigerator cleaning ever! But here is the 2nd shelf, which actually was a shelf and drawer. My camera is being defiant again so these pics are from my phone.

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Here is a close up of the filth.

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Had to pull the whole thing out together until I realized these come apart! Washed it with warm soapy water then had to spot clean with all purpose cleaner since there was some sticky spots.

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And here is the reorganized 2nd shelf and drawer. Yes, I know this is super boring but today I am choosing boring and accountable then exciting and off the cleaning wagon…

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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Days 38 &39: Miserly

Day 38 was a very busy day. I barely remember it….oh yes!  Ely and I got to go to Lakeshore for educational toy shopping! We were there for hours. The teacher inside of me wished for a million dollars to buy everything but the mom in me realized that would never buy me the time to teach Ely everything I want to teach her. So we came home with magnetic letters & numbers and Unifix cubes!!!  After Christmas and her birthday bonanza it is time to settle down once again and resume our Alphabet Lessons. All this to explain why I am very pressed for time this week and why I have been cleaning like a miser. Day 38 I cleaned the stovetop. It had not been cleaned since JW caramelized 8 whole onions for the party! I don’t have a picture because my camera was being snotty but today it finally took pictures for me. Here is what I cleaned today (Day 39). The top shelf of my fridge. Yup, just the top shelf.

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Because I am nerdy, I looked in my Idiot book to see how the author recommends cleaning the fridge. She said to use soapy warm water so I took the shelf out and awkwardly washed it in the sink.

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Here is the new and improved top shelf.  Maybe tomorrow I will get to shelf #2. I have much lesson planning to do!

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Monday, February 6, 2012

Day 37: the Princess's Quarters

I had a wild morning of productivity since Ely slept in and I did not. During the party planning period I enjoyed many late nights, but now that the party has come and gone I am loving myself by going to bed earlier.  Monday keeps turning into laundry day so today I washed our sheets (Ely's sheets got washed Saturday), towels, cleaning rags (yay!), kitchen towels and my dainties. Then when Ely woke up I stormed her bedroom with her morning mango juice and all purpose cleaner. Her room was a bit dusty, though not the blinds or windows since they were recently cleaned, and messy. Here is her nightstand/dresser…a bit disorderly.

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Mirroring is not always a bad thing. Here is Ely cleaning her piano while I clean her bookshelf.

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Here she is cleaning her dresser fervently while I continue to clean her bookshelf. I keep telling her that princesses have clean homes. LOL! So what if they also have paid cleaning ladies and I am neither?

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This is a before shot of her dirty and disorganized bookshelf.

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I emptied all her storage boxes because somehow they get hair and random lint in them. Here is one sparkly clean. I dusted the lamp, IPOD player, Bibles, etc. and reorganized it a bit.

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Here is the bookshelf clean and organized. The Teacher Bug inside me is screaming for me to make some cute picture labels for those storage boxes.  Save me Rational Thought!

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I know this is weird, but I take great joy in cleaning Ely's things and rearranging her furniture and toys. Can anyone in the world explain to me what that is about??

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And here is her dresser clean and rearranged. Joy!

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I also swept the floors a few times until I realized that the mud I was sweeping up was under Ely's new glass slippers!  At least the mud was dry.

I am not sure what I will clean tomorrow but it is nice to start the week with clean laundry. I have been pretending the refrigerator doesn’t need to be cleaned for….all this year. Sigh. I may get motivated enough this week….I do not enjoy cleaning the refrigerator.