Spring Cleaning Tips & Tricks
By Beth Alexandroff, Heather Georgoudiou, Lee Ann Marcel, Josh Wilson
April 13, 2009
Spring cleaning now includes not only your physical world, but your
digital world as well. Let’s face it, most of us probably have random
files buried throughout our computer that are old news, and their time
has come. It’s time to get your digital hands dirty, find what you
don’t need and do what has to be done: Destroy it. This includes
weeding out pointless pictures and deleting the Backstreet Boys from
your music files. Face it. It’s time. Organizing your computer can save
you a lot of time and frustration when desperately trolling through LOLCats trying to find important documents.
For PC users here’s a couple tips.
For Mac users here’s a couple more.
A lot of us have to share life—and consequently spring cleaning—with a roommate or two. What if your roommates don’t jump on the spring cleaning bandwagon? We’ve all had the roommate who seems to shed trash
everywhere they tread. There are a few ways to get them motivated
without causing a disagreement. Emphasize that you’re in this together
and be willing to understand their situation. Offer a time to work
together to get the place clean. Here are a few more ideas.
Now for the one you’ve been dreading. Cleaning the oven is usually associated with the seemingly near-death, toxic experience of spraying powerful cleaner everywhere. Well, there is a way of avoiding that
experience and saving yourself from the likely-to-follow cancer. You
just need baking soda and a spray bottle of water. The process is
fairly simple. Layer the bottom of the oven in the baking soda, get it
wet and let it do its magic. Here are the steps to a sparkling clean oven ready for your cooking masterpieces. Also, it’s all cleared out to make way for any Shrinkidinks you might have left over from the ‘80s.
You know that funky smell that wafts into your nostrils every time you open the fridge? That means something in there has gained sentience, and may be mere days away from staging a revolt. It’s time for a preemptive strike.
First, take out everything inside the fridge, including the drawers and shelves. As you take out the food, read all of the labels checking expiration dates and tossing out the items that have bit the
dust. Throw away any food items that you know you will not consume
before it spoils. For example, two-week-old Chinese leftovers are
probably not going to be eaten. Next, wash all your shelves and drawers
with a rag, dish soap and warm water. Now it’s time to wipe the
interior of the fridge. Using a clean cloth, hot water and dish soap,
work from top to bottom. Focus on the corners and those nasty spills
that were left behind. Then, dry the interior with another towel.
Don’t forget the interior doors either. Now it’s time to replace the
food. Try to organize your products into groups like condiments in one
area, cheeses in the smaller drawer, veggies in the crisper, etc. To
top it off, go through your freezer as well and throw away anything
that is frostbitten or expired. Here are a few more tips.
Sometimes cleaning your closet out can seem like a daunting task, but this is the season to conquer the clutter.
First, take out everything. That’s
right, EVERYTHING. It’s got to get worse
before it gets better. As you take out your clothes, put anything that
you know that you haven’t worn in the past year in a separate pile. No exceptions. We know you like that Hypercolor shirt and your Zubaz pants, but it’s time to let them go. If it’s out of style or never worn, put it in a garbage bag to give away to a charity like Salvation Army. It’s not just pragmatic—it’s a stewardship issue. Instead of hoarding clothes you never wear,
give them to someone who truly needs them. Now begin to place clothes
according to season. Since spring is upon us, box up all of those heavy
sweaters and bulky jackets and hide them under your bed. Start placing
your clothes, on hangers, into the closet by style (T-shirts, blouses,
dress shirts, dresses, pants, jeans etc), occasion (casual, special
occasion, business etc.) or color. Color organizing is more appealing
to the eye and it's also easier to find clothes when you are in a
hurry. If you are limited in space, sometimes using an over-the-door
shoe storage can make a world of difference. Target is a great place
for more closet organizing items. Here are more ideas for those who want to go do an extreme makeover on their cluttered closet.
It wouldn’t be spring cleaning without cleaning products. These days there
are hundreds to choose from; however, though they may do the job
quickly, some products might not be the safest for the
environment and your health. Companies such as Mrs. Meyers and Seventh
Generation make cleaning products specially designed to be toxic-free
and do a good job of getting rid of those unwanted odors and household
bacteria. You can also check out a few of these websites to make your
own products with items you most likely already have lying around.
We all have grown up with the thoughts of doing well for the
environment by recycling. However, after you finish that last sip of
your 12 oz Coke, the last thing you usually think of is tossing it into a
specially designated aluminum bin and then taking that bin to the local
recycling center. But every time you just toss a can in the trash, it’s
tantamount to punching a tree. OK, that may be overstating it. However,
recycling is the responsible thing to do, and it's a lot easier than
you think. Here is a website
to help you get started and organize those items that can be used
again. Remember, spring cleaning can also inspire you to start forming
new cleaning habits as well.