Sunday, February 26, 2006

A Few More Baking Soda Uses

* Use a scrubby sponge dipped in a combination of salt and baking soda (about half and half) to scrub your wooden cutting boards clean.

* Add to the load when you're doing laundry to help neutralize smokey odors - or ANY odors.

* Use baking soda and a little water (make a paste of it) to get off crayon marks on floors and walls. That grittiness of the baking soda really works well on this.

* That same paste of baking soda and water will remove scuff marks from the floor OR from your shoes.

* And finally, that SAME baking soda and water paste - used with a scrubby sponge - will remove those really nasty goopy bug splatters from the front of your car!

Want even more baking soda uses? I have LOTS of them at:

Using FRESH LEMONS to Clean

Mmmm...fresh lemons...that scent evokes thoughts of baking pies or fresh lemonade.

But, lemons are also great for around the house. Try these easy tips to use fresh lemons:

=> Use some fresh lemon peels, along with a stick of cinnamon or a few cloves and simmer in a bit of water on the stovetop for an instant freshener for your kitchen. Smells so good.

=> Use a cut lemon, dipped in baking soda to scrub at the kitchen sink. It will leave it sparkling clean.

=> You can make a homemade lemon air freshener by adding about 10 drops of lemon essential oil to a small spray bottle filled with water. Give it a good shake and use wherever you want to add some fresh scent.

=> Microwave cleaning trick: My favorite lemon use is to throw a healthy slice of fresh lemon into a mug of water and heat it in the microwave. Let it sit until completely cool, and then open the microwave and all the gunk and goo inside will wipe easily away. The accumulated steam will get rid of the gunk and the lemon makes it smell great!

Want more lemon tips? Advice on how to store fresh lemons (including how to freeze the juice AND the peel) and much more is at:

Monday, February 20, 2006

Homemade Carpet Freshening Powder

Our carpets get NO respect! Think of our stinky feet, pets paws, and all the other goop that ends up on our poor floors. No wonder so many of us love that carpet freshening powder you can buy in stores.

But, it's easy to make your own! Visit our site for the recipe:

Fixing Stained Leather Furniture

I get asked a lot about how to clean stains on leather sofas, chairs, etc.

The first thing I recommend is to contact the store where you purchased your furniture, and/or the manufacturer. Sometimes a diluted soap and water solution will help to clean the stain.

BUT...all too often you're left with a funny patch of discoloration where the stain was. A great tip for that is: leather shoe polish!! Find the exact color and using a soft, lint-free cloth gently buff in some of the polish where the stain was. Be sure to allow it to sit overnight and DON'T sit in the polish unless you want a speckled bum! :) It helps a lot to make a nasty stain on your lovely furniture a lot less noticeable.

Visit today for more cleaning tips!

Monday, February 13, 2006

Job Jars for Kids - Cleaning Tips

My Mom was very clever at getting me - the Happy Slob, after all - to clean. In my family we called that big old glass jar a 'Job Jar' and in it were little folded bits of paper with a different chore listed on each one.

All I had to do was reach in grab one of those pieces of paper - tasks varied from small cleaning chores easily done in 5 minutes to ones more involved, maybe like helping Mom vaccuum the house. Then, when the task was done I got to my favorite part -- the reward!

Another jar was set aside with even more bits of paper - this time with the rewards written out for a job well done. These varied from a trip to the ice cream store to little rewards like helping Mom bake some of my favorite cookies or getting to stay up 15 minutes later that night. :) Hey, to a kid those things are great!

Try this with your children to turn dreaded housework into a fun task with a reward at the end.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

REAL Meaning of PhD

Janis sent me a funny email yesterday - including the true definition of PhD - Piled Higher and Deeper!

If this is how bad YOUR clutter feels, then it's time to take action! Tackle your worst clutter zone and decide on an item budget - for instance, 10 items. Then, deal with 10 items today and tomorrow and so on -- until that clutter zone is actually clutter free!

:) Now this is what I call simple & stress-free organizing!