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Archive for posts tagged with ‘Housework’

A vacuum story

Thoughtfully penned on July 23rd, 2009 and generally concerning Giving Thanks, God's at Work in My Life, Housework, Of games and good things

About three weeks ago our vacuum (which has served us pretty well during these 8+ years of marriage) died a smoky death as it cleaned out the dryer vent. With a preschooler and a crazy toddler roaming around this place we really can’t do without a vacuum for even a short period of time, so the search began.

Matt did some research, and we did some shopping, and we settled on a small canister vac that would serve our needs. All the while I dreamed and drooled over the Dyson vacuum that I would love to have but just wasn’t in the budget.

Then…a week after we purchased our vacuum I was notified by 5 Minutes for Mom that I was randomly selected as the winner of their Dyson DC25 giveaway. I was so excited! Matt, being the resident skeptic, was, well, a bit skeptical in the “I’ll believe it when I see it” sort of way.

The following Tuesday our new vacuum arrived. We excitedly opened the box expecting to put together the new toy vacuum and try it. We were unpleasantly surprised to find that the box did not contain the vacuum attachments or, more importantly, the front part of the vacuum (you know, the part that touches the floor and picks up the dirt).

On Wednesday morning I set out to find a way to remedy the situation. I e-mailed the prize coordinator at 5M4M and she got in touch with the PR rep for Dyson. I expected to receive an e-mail saying that they would ship me the missing parts and we would live happily with our new, fully assembled vacuum. When the PR rep contacted me, he was extremely apologetic for the problem and offered, not to get me the missing parts, but to upgrade us to a DC28, Dyson’s most powerful vacuum!

Our new vacuum arrived on Tuesday, and Tuesday night we put it together and tried it. From our first run, I think this is a great vacuum!

God is so good! A super-dooper vacuum was not something we had to have, but is definitely something for which we are thankful. God knows all of our wants and needs, the big and the small, and provides for us in ways that we couldn’t even imagine.

Tackle it Tuesday: Confession Time

Thoughtfully penned on October 21st, 2008 and generally concerning Goals, Housework, Tackle It Tuesday
Tackle It Tuesday Meme

I confess, I hate cleaning our shower.  I don’t just dislike it, I hate it.  But, you say, hate is a very strong word.  Yes, and I hate it.

Let’s just say that it had been a while since any serious cleaning had taken place in the shower in our master bathroom.  Don’t misunderstand, the bathroom itself is cleaned very regularly, just not the shower.

When I saw at 5 Minutes for Mom that CLR was offering the opportunity to try their kitchen and bathroom cleaner as part of Tackle it Tuesday I jumped at the chance and hoped that this would provide the motivation I needed to get the job done.  And it did.

I had high hopes for the CLR cleaner.  I tried not to expect too much, because, really, anything short of a product that would redo grout – or better yet, redo tile – wouldn’t live up to my expectations.  I did, however, expect the product to cut the soap scum, clean off the mineral deposits, and, hopefully, make a dent in the mildew that I’d let build up on the grout and around the bottles (shampoo, face cleaner, etc) on the shower floor.

I wasn’t disappointed.  I followed the directions – spray on, leave to work for a few minutes, wipe down, let sit for 2-3 minutes, rinse with clear water – and the soap scum and mineral deposits wiped off and washed away with very little effort.  The mildew on the tile itself cleaned off fairly easily with the scrubber side of the sponge.  The mildew in the grout was a tougher kill (as I expected), but this cleaner cleared away some of the mildew stains completely and lightened or partially cleared most of the others.  I also might have been able to get more of the mildew stains taken care of if I had put more elbow grease into it; I will probably work on them some more sometime in the coming weeks.

Overall I was pleased with the results.  I would recommend using the product in a well ventilated area (as directed) due to the fumes; I opened the bathroom window and this seemed to provide reasonable ventilation.  (I generally use non-toxic cleaners (with the exception of bleach cleaners on toilets and in the tub), so I found the chemical smell to be quite strong and offensive.)  I don’t think I would use the CLR Bathroom & Kitchen Cleaner as an all-purpose cleaner for these spaces, but I will definitely use it again in the shower.

Most importantly, my shower is clean and I feel a sense of accomplishment because I finally made myself tackle it.  If you find a product that will do my tile and grout work for me, please let me know.

Happy Tackling!

Tackle It Tuesday – getting back in a groove

Thoughtfully penned on June 10th, 2008 and generally concerning Goals, Housework, Tackle It Tuesday
Tackle It Tuesday Meme

I’ve been out of the Tackle It Tuesday loop the last several weeks as we welcomed Boo and have been adjusting to a new routine.  We are also out of the house a lot these days enjoying summer fun with friends.  However, looking at my to-do list for the week, I think it’s time to jump back in and start tackling.

My big tackle for the past week was getting Cha-ching, my financial software, updated.  I was only a month behind.  Not only does this help me fulfill my need to play with numbers, but it allows me to see a little better where our money is going and how we might make budget adjustments for the future.

So, not very exciting for my first week back, but something that definitely needed to be done.  

For the upcoming week – create a schedule, write thank you notes, do some cleaning

Happy tackling!

You know you’re a Momma when…

Thoughtfully penned on May 23rd, 2008 and generally concerning E, Housework, J, Life with littles, Motherhood

…at the end of the day you have spit-up on the front and back of your shirt and your bra

…in addition to all the spit-up there is new-baby poop on your shorts

…you are happy to have time to clean the bathrooms

…four hours of consecutive sleep is a great night’s sleep

…you never know where on your person you might have various unidentifiable substances

…you have more joy in watching two little people grow and develop than you ever thought possible 

An apron would be a great addition to my wardrobe

Thoughtfully penned on May 22nd, 2008 and generally concerning Contests, Housework

I’m known around here for being a messy Momma.  I have a tendency to splatter food on myself when cooking, get flour everywhere while baking, and bleach my clothing while cleaning.  All-in-all, it is amazing I have any clothing fit for wearing out of the house; guess it’s a good thing I’m a stay-at-home-mom.

I’ve often thought about getting an apron or asking for one for birthday or Christmas, but I always seem to find a reason not to – find something else I want, decide I don’t really have the money to spend, forget.  However, each time I have a grease stain that won’t come out or a new bleach spot on my shirt I find myself wishing I had been wearing an apron.

It would be really great to have a nice, pretty apron that made housekeeping a bit more fun (or at least tolerable).  And now, I (and you, too) have a chance to win a great apron from Flirty Aprons; just visit Simple reviews (this post) to get the details.  I think I would have to choose the Blue Chocolate apron if I won.  

And even if I don’t win the giveaway, I should probably look into getting an apron.  My clothing budget would thank me.

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Tackle it Tuesday – it’s Tuesday again already??

Thoughtfully penned on March 25th, 2008 and generally concerning Goals, Housework, J, Tackle It Tuesday

Tackle It Tuesday Meme

Well, the tackles for this week didn’t go down exactly as planned; I forgot that Matt would have a nice long weekend (he was off a 1/2 day Thursday and all day Friday) due to my birthday and Good Friday.  I also didn’t think about Thursday being my birthday which meant I took the day off from household chores.  But we enjoyed Matt’s extra “stay-home” days and even managed to get a few things accomplished.

First tackle – a written birth plan.  I was storing a lot of information in my head regarding what I want and don’t want for Boo’s birth.  On Thursday I put those thoughts on paper and will take a draft copy to my doctor’s appointment to discuss.  There isn’t anything wild or crazy, but it is nice to know that my goals are written down so that others will be aware of them.

Around the house – On Friday, Matt washed both of our cars, vacuumed the interiors, and cleaned the windows.  This was a tackle that really needed to be done; our cars were pretty yucky as we emerge from winter.  It’s been wonderful to get into a clean car the last few days.

And on the baby Boo front – We bought some of the wall decor we will use in the nursery, a set of 3-D letters in brown paperboard that spell his name and a ledge shelf to display them.  Hopefully, we will get some work done in his room this week/weekend and I’ll have some pictures to post next week.

I also began a sewing project for the boy, a set of cute burp cloths from this tutorial.  Not really a difficult project, but quite time intensive for a novice, teaching-myself seamstress.  I am down to stitching everything together, so it shouldn’t take me too long to finish.

Up next – 36 week doctor’s appointment (today), dust house, do regular cleaning (bathrooms, kitchen, vacuum, etc) before company this weekend, finish Boo’s burp cloths, bake bread, get baby things from attic (Matt’s job), write Thank You notes, get to work putting Boo’s room together.  Sounds like a pretty busy week for me.

Happy tackling!

And as an aside – I’m hosting a book giveaway this week.  If you’re interested, check it out here.

Tackle it Tuesday – Spring cleaning continues

Thoughtfully penned on March 18th, 2008 and generally concerning Goals, Housework, Tackle It Tuesday

Tackle It Tuesday Meme

This week it was back to Spring cleaning.  I finished up a couple of things that still needed to be done in the living room and moved on to the hallway. I wiped the fingerprints off the walls, cleaned the baseboards and door frames, cleared out the cobwebs, and scrubbed the air intake for our central heating/cooling system. And I got in trouble for standing on the step stool to reach the areas above my head (Matt doesn’t like me to stand on things while I’m this pregnant).Spring is in the air and Little is outgrowing her 12-18 month size clothes.  So, I tackled her closet on Friday.  I removed all of the outgrown (there were smaller sizes piled in the bottom of the closet and some of her winter stuff that is too little) and too wintery clothes, bagged them (I store all of her clothes in zipper baggies to help prevent storage yuckies), labeled the bags, and boxed them up.  Now they are ready to go in the attic when Matt goes up there to get the baby stuff.  I also pulled all of her Spring/Summer clothes out of her “to-grow-into” bag, washed them, and found homes for them in the closet.  It’s nice to have this taken care of since the temps are warming up and Boo’s arrival will make projects like this difficult for a while.Up next on the tackling agenda – a couple of projects for Boo and his room, some deep cleaning in the master bedroom, and writing up a birth plan.Happy Tuesday and happy tackling! 

Tackle it Tuesday – a clean fridge

Thoughtfully penned on March 4th, 2008 and generally concerning Goals, Housework, Tackle It Tuesday

Tackle It Tuesday Meme

At the moment I should be tackling sleep, but, alas, pregnancy insomnia strikes again and here I sit typing a blog post instead. It seems there is no rest for the pregnant and weary.

My big tackle for this week has been cleaning the inside of my refrigerator. It is truly amazing (and pretty gross) the amount of gunk and funk that can accumulate on fridge shelves and walls over a period of time. So Thursday I set to work washing shelves and those little door compartment thingies, wiping down the walls and door, and scrubbing underneath the bottom drawers. Not a fun job, but definitely one that needed to be done. And now my fridge is nice and clean; we’ll see how long it stays that way.

I also dusted (there’s that word again) the inside of our TV cabinet. Because we have a low-sitting cabinet the doors have child-safety locks on them and I just don’t think about cleaning in there. Needless to say, it had become quite dusty over the last several months.

And, I’m still at work on the magazine pile; it is slowly dwindling. I think I’m down to 5 or 6 issues, but I’ve focused most of my reading time this week on The Birth Book in preparation for Boo’s arrival.

What is to come this week? I’m not sure. Matt has been on me the last few weeks about doing too much, so I’ll probably try to take it a little easier on the “extra” housework. We have company (my SIL and her family) coming this weekend, so I will definitely get the cleaning basics done. Other than that, there are a few projects that I’d like to (or need to) get done before baby comes. And today, I must finish my Bible Study before I go to class tomorrow morning.

Good luck with your tackles!

More on nesting…and the Boo-belly

Thoughtfully penned on February 27th, 2008 and generally concerning Housework, J, Pregnancy, Sidetrack'd

I’m beginning to wonder if nesting is a blessing or a curse. It is nice to get things accomplished around here, but when I’m working on limited time and energy it seems weird that I’m concerned with things like getting the tops of the door frames cleaned.

The other day I was thinking about this time of pregnancy with Little. At first I thought, “I don’t remember nesting like this. I wonder why this time is different?” And then I really thought about it and realized that we closed on our house about eleven weeks before she was born and moved into it about six weeks before she was born. The time in between was spent packing, painting, cleaning the apartment, and getting the house ready for move in. Those final weeks were spent painting, unpacking, settling in, and getting Little’s things ready for her arrival. No wonder I don’t remember nesting!

Anyway, I am trying to get things marked off my to-do list as I have the energy. And I’m trying not to worry about the things that won’t get done. These last weeks are better spent preparing for birth, preparing for Jack’s arrival, and spending those last “only child” times with my little bit of girl (btw – this phrase is the source of her nickname; I called her that a lot when she was a tiny girl). We’ll see how the “not worrying about things that won’t get done” part goes.

And finally…It’s been awhile since I posted a Boo-belly picture. Here is one I took on Monday before my doctor appointment; we’re 32 weeks along.


Tackle it Tuesday – we’re getting there

Thoughtfully penned on February 26th, 2008 and generally concerning Goals, Housework, Tackle It Tuesday

Tackle It Tuesday Meme

To those of you who stopped by and commented last week on Tackle it Tuesday: Welcome and thanks for visiting; I hope to see you again! I apologize for not making the rounds last week, life got in the way and I didn’t get to visit the other participants; I’ll try to do better this week.

And now on to our tackles…

The biggest thing accomplished in our house this week was that Matt finished painting the trim in Boo’s room. Yay! Now we can begin the decorating/furniture placement phase of this operation. Before and after pictures will be posted at some point.

For my part, I’ve made a dent in the tackles I set out to accomplish and conquered a couple of other things. First, the magazines…


This is what my stack looked like when I started. I’m not caught up yet, but I’ve reduced the stack size by approximately half. The remaining half will go on my tackle list for next week.

From my housekeeping/nesting list I dusted the bookshelves and wiped down the baseboards and walls in the living room. Because I’m not a very thorough duster, the shelves were probably a bigger job than they should have been. It does feel good to have these two things accomplished, though.

The plan for next week includes cleaning the fridge (I’ve been procrastinating a bit on this one), the living room wipe down/dusting (still lack upper moldings and tops of doors as well as the inside of the television cabinet), and completing the magazine job.

Good luck with your tackling!