Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Spring Cleaning . . . UGHHH

I was born on my mother's birthday September 22, and we're both Virgos through and through. Although her mother was born in November she's a Virgo too by nature as I noticed we all share the same OCD cleaning traits. 

I'm usually very good about cleaning especially cleaning areas that are often neglected like the blades of ceiling fans, the toilet base and the rubber rim of my front loading washing machine, but lately I haven't been motivated like I used to. 

Typically, I'd engage in once weekly thorough cleaning on top of picking up after myself throughout the week. Now I'm to the point that I'm lucky if I can get the bed made every day and the laundry folded weekly. I'm very good though about getting the dishes washed. I've always had a dishwasher in all my NYC apartments so I think that's helped a bit, but because I cook so much many of my pots and pans I wash by hand since I can scrub up the nasty bits.

Now that the baby's coming I've taken to "nesting." I thought it was a myth, like pregnancy brain, but I'm seriously starting to get panicky about making the apartment spic and span for the baby. I'm especially obsessed with cleaning the baseboards. We have SOOOO many long stretches of baseboards in our apartment, and I think I'll have to employ Uka to get down with me to clean them. I've been mentioning to him slowly to get him accustomed to the idea. I came across this video that makes it look easy enough:

If it was up to me I'd hire a cleaning service to come in and do the entire apartment top to bottom including the AC units, windows, floors and baseboards, but it's not in our budget so I won't be doing that. I was a big fan of hiring cleaning companies occasionally when I lived on my own, and I definitely think it's worthwhile, but for now I am my own cleaning company!

Because of pregnancy brain I've created extra messes for myself including dropping an entire gallon of milk on the floor so hard that it splashed up the wall (Uka claims he can still see remnants of it there!) and totally missing the pan when dumping a can of crushed tomatoes into a sauce pan. It went down into the burners and even past the burners into the bottom tray of my range. The good thing is since it's a Viking professional range it comes completely apart for cleaning, but it still took me over an hour to clean it. 

Nevermind that I hadn't gone down there to clean it yet in the 7 months we've lived in the apartment so there was all kinds of gunk down there. I was totally grossed out! The good news is that it will be thoroughly clean and disinfected for the time being, however I have yet to do the oven . . .

Over the years I've 4 basic quick clean tips that have helped at least maintain the appearance of cleanliness when I'm in a hurry:

  • Disinfecting wipes cover a multitude of sins: even when someone is suddenly dropping by in 20 minutes I can quickly wipe down surfaces with the wipes and it freshens things up with both the gleam and the smell
  • No shoes in the home: the thought of bringing the outside in (especially dirty NYC) totally grosses me out, but from a practicality perspective it keeps dirt and grime from being tracked through the home; the worse for me is when workmen enter the apartment and track dusty shoe prints - I've read that I should keep boot covers on hand but I always forget to pick them up at Home Depot
  • Febreeze is magical: apart from the disinfecting wipes, going through the apartment with the Febreeze makes everything a bit fresher especially the sofa and the rugs
  • Swiffer in a jiffy: when I don't have time to run the vacuum I just quickly swipe the Swiffer over my floors; it doesn't get everything but it's good enough for the naked eye
What are your quick clean tips?