My name is Tiffany, and I am a neat freak. Not just the kind of person who enjoys cleanliness and organization; a real neat freak. I get antsy and stressed and feel overwhelmed and off if I have to leave a mess anywhere in my home. I cannot even begin to tell you how many people make statements such as, “I don’t even look at how clean your cooktop is when I’m in your house!” to me, and I just don’t believe it. I don’t believe it because you better believe my inner neat freak notices those things at your house. I see the dirty fingerprints on your white doors. I see the dusty baseboards and the water spots on your faucets. I see it all – and I am driven completely crazy by it.
I cannot leave my house if there is one thing out of place. Even if it’s just a cup in the sink, I’ll run back inside and put it in the dishwasher so I can leave comfortable and a relaxed knowing my house is clean. I try so hard not to pass my neat-freak onto my kids. I want them to be clean and have basic good housekeeping skills, but I don’t want them to be as obsessive compulsive as their mother – and so far I’m doing all right. They’re clean kids for the most part, and I like that.
However, I’m still a neat freak and sometimes I just want to share with people how easy it is to keep a clean house. I keep seeing all those, “Excuse the mess, my kids are making memories,” and “Dirty floors, sticky stuff, whatever, means I’m a good mom with happy kids,” and I cringe. No, it makes you lazy. Sorry – but it does. There is no reason you cannot have a clean house with kids – I have four, I work from home, they’re home with me and we have a very active life that means we are always on the go. They might take their toys out and you might see them on the floor when you come to visit, but we don’t do stick floors (we mop up sticky messes) and we don’t do dirty (if something is dirty, clean it). It’s SO easy to have a clean house and it takes no time at all to keep it up. If you just do it as needed, it doesn’t back up and never takes more than 2 minutes. I have some of the most amazing cleaning tips for everyone; trust me when I say that they work.
In our house, we have a cooktop that’s a total flat surface. We don’t have an oven attached to it, because we have double ovens in the wall. However, I believe that some oven/stove combos have flat surface tops, if I’m not mistaken. Any time something boils over, it immediately burns to the top and nothing seems to get that mess off. I’ve learned that if you just pour some baking soda on the cooktop stains (when they cool!) and then scrub it with a wet wash cloth, it comes right off.
In our house, we have a lot of windows and that means a lot of big, heavy white wooden blinds. They get dirty fast, and it takes so long to clean them. That’s why I always put microfiber cloth around a set of tongs. You just grip the blind and voila; you have clean blinds and it takes no time at all. Allow me to recommend you buy a few sets of tongs and cloth and allow your kids to help you out when you get to work; they love it and it makes the job so much faster.
Thankfully, we have walk-in showers and no need for doors anymore, and I appreciate that more than you know. Nothing grosses me out more than glass shower doors or shower curtains (germs!). However, if you do have a glass door enclosure, stop using things on it. All you need is a magic eraser, since it works like a charm. I’ve never seen glass doors so clean as I have when someone uses one of those things on their doors.
Trim and Baseboards and Doors
I have spent some serious time in my life cleaning dust and spots off of our white baseboards and our white doors and the trim around them. Finger prints from very dirty little kids coming in and out of the house, footprints from when you have your hands full and you push the door open with your foot, and so much more. Imagine my surprise when I learned you can take a Magic Eraser and get anything and everything off those doors and trim in a second. I mean, a second; it’s so clean.
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