Looking for the perfect cleaning resource? Check out my book, The Organically Clean Home!

DIY Homemade Cleaners : Nightly Sink Scrub

 

Nightly Sink Scrub - Clean Mama

My favorite DIY recipe is also my favorite nightly ritual – the Nightly Sink Scrub.  It’s a recipe I came up with a few years ago and it pretty much started my DIY cleaners obsession which also turned into my first book, The Organically Clean Home.  The great thing about this recipe is that it’s so simple to whip up and it does such a great job at giving the sink a little scrub, you’ll love it!  Did you know that the sink is pretty much the dirtiest spot in your whole home?  Another reason to give it a nightly scrub!

DIY Nightly Sink Scrub - Clean Mama

Gather your simple ingredients:

  • 2 cups baking soda
  • 10 drops lemon essential oil
  • 10 drops clove essential oil
  • castile soap (or dish soap) (this is not added to the baking soda until it’s used – keep reading!)
  • container with a lid or a shaker top (I like a mason jar, this one specifically :)) – I’ve previously used a shaker top but have switched to a lid – either way works!
  • sink safe scrub brush – I use this one and keep it under my sink in a vintage mason jar.  I can toss the head in the dishwasher to sanitize it as needed.

See how easy it is to mix up and use…

  1. put baking soda in your container
  2. add essential oils to the top of the baking soda
  3. stir and combine with a kitchen knife
  4. wet your sink
  5. sprinkle liberally in your sink
  6. add a squirt or two of dish or castile soap
  7. scrub with a sink-safe scrubber
  8. rinse thoroughly

Sink Scrub

I keep this jar and scrubber under the kitchen sink just for cleaning the sink – it’s convenient and easy to grab every night.

Nightly Sink Scrub Under the Kitchen Sink - Clean Mama

There you have it – a simple and effective DIY cleaning recipe to add to your repertoire!

Nightly Sink Scrub and Brush - Clean Mama

 

Nightly Sink Scrub - scrub rinse repeat - Clean Mama

More posts in this series – just click on the image to go to the post:

Marble + Granite Cleaning Spray - Clean Mama

Soft Cleaning Paste - the perfect scrub - Clean Mama

All-Purpose Spray - Clean Just About Anywhere Spary - Clean Mama

The Perfect DIY Glass Cleaner - Clean Mama

DIY Cleaners Ingredient Storage - Clean Mama

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Summer Boredom Busters : No Screen Required

Summer Boredom Busters - No Screen Required - Clean Mama

As the school year winds down I/we get really excited for the summer.  For me, I love the relaxed mornings, trips to the pool, a little vacation time, and less structure.  I also know that we need a couple boredom busters to carry us through the summer because everyone needs a little downtime/ rest time, right?  Best thing about this list?  It doesn’t require a screen, an outlet, or a cord – hooray!  You could re-purpose this for trips, things to do with a sitter, rewards for extra chores, etc.

Here’s what you need to do:

  • grab a basket, a bucket, a bag to gather your boredom busters – look for something that you have and can reuse.
  • collect existing coloring books, workbooks, and other resources that you already have around the house that you know your kids will enjoy during the summer.
  • add some new activities – I like to keep things in a couple categories to captivate the kiddos for an hour or so.  Art, strategy, brain exercises, tactile activities, puzzles….
  • put together the bucket or basket and HIDE IT until summer – it’ll be a great surprise when the ‘I’m bored’ comments start!

small summer boredom busters

These are all items that we have, have used, or have bought for the summer – I know you and your kids or grandkids, or friends’ kids will love them.  This list is best suited for the elementary-aged crowd, but there are definitely some preschool, pre-teen and early teen crossovers here as well.

Summer Boredom Busters - Clean Mama

Kids go crazy for this fun book that contains 50 3-D models of creative and silly monsters. The pages are perforated and tabbed to make construction easier.  Papertoy Monster

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Star Wars meets paper airplanes. What’s not to love?  Star Wars Folded Flyers

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Step by step directions make paper airplane making easy and fun!  Klutz Book of Paper Airplanes

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This book is full of various brain games and puzzles to stump and challenge all minds.  Kids Big Book of Games

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This puzzle book is so fun! Various mazes, word games, visual and logic puzzles, and more will keep kids busy for hours.  Brainiest Insaniest Ultimate Puzzle Book

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Fun facts and challenges encourage kids to use their brains in new ways as they learn and solve puzzles.  National Geographic Kids Brain Games

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These intricate dot to dot puzzles range from 300 to 1400 dots. Intricate and challenging to encourage high level thinking skills.  Extreme Dot to Dot Animals

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Great for a variety of ages and skill levels, this book is full of fun and thought provoking problems that are sure to engage and challenge.  Word Winks

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Intricate color by number artwork that is ideal for building concentration and encouraging relaxation.  One for animal lovers : Color Counts: Animals

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And one that would be great on a road trip : Color Counts: Travel the USA

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The element of surprise in this coloring book makes it extra intriguing.  Mystery Mosaics: Book One

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Who doesn’t love a good maze? The details and twist and turns in this activity book make it extra fun. Extreme Mazes

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These simple but intriguing water toys are a blast from the past. Tomy Pelican Water Game

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Tomy Dolphin Water Game

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Encourage higher level thinking with this ingenious puzzle cube. ThinkFun Adams Cube

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This gravity powered logic maze is wonderfully versatile for various ages and skill levels.  Gravity Maze

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Encourage spatial thinking and logic with this addictive and challenging game. Rush Hour

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Mesmerizing and challenging, this three dimensional maze is fun for any age. Perplexus Epic

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And of course there needs to be one for me – The Inspired Room Coloring Book – it comes out July 1st, just in time for some lazy summer day coloring 🙂

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Have any other favorites to add?  Here are a couple more posts that might help you get through the summer!

Kid-Friendly Cleaning Caddy + DIY Cleaning Spray via Clean Mama

Simple Chore Chart and Reward System Your Kids Will Love via Clean Mama

How to Organize Snacks + Lunches via Clean Mama

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ENDED The Perfect Tool for Your Home : The Ultimate Homemaking Bundle

BundlePreviewThis special promotion has ended.  Thank you to all who purchased!  Sign up in the sidebar for reminders and blog posts so you don’t miss something like this 🙂 I love sharing homekeeping tips and tricks that work in our home and today I have something really special to share with you that I KNOW will encourage you, help you on your own homemaking journey, and ultimately save you a lot of time and money!

Maybe you wonder how you can keep up with it all and still have the energy and intentionality to be the kind of mom, wife and woman you want to be.

I know as well as you do that homemaking is never going to be stress-free (though it sure sounds nice). But what if you had more (and better) tools to help make it stress-less?

That’s why I’m over-the-moon excited to tell you about something very special happening right now called The Ultimate Homemaking Bundle 2016.

It was created to give you a plethora of amazing, high-quality resources to take some of the stress, overwhelm and difficulty out of homemaking and mothering.

I just know that this bundle is going to make you feel like you’re winning more often – those little wins really do add up!

Here’s what you need to know:

The Ultimate Homemaking Bundle includes 93 hand-picked eBooks, eCourses, and printables, on topics that matter to moms such as:

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  • organization, routines & creating a cozy home
  • recipes, grocery shopping and meal planning
  • budgeting and saving money
  • motherhood (no matter what age your kids are)
  • cultivating a strong marriage
  • faith (for you & your kids)
  • and even self-care (like exercise, weight loss, life planning and coloring books!)
  • and much more…

This can seem overwhelming, but if you PICK and CHOOSE you’ll find that it’s totally worth it.  A couple favorites?

OrganizationRoutines

I love the Organization and Routines Category – you’ll see my ebook Cleaning Around the Seasons – if you add up just this category, the 14 ebooks, printables and e-courses the price would be hundreds of dollars. Do you see the Cozy Minimalist Mom ecourse from The Nester?  That alone is valued at $29!  Or how about 31 Days to a Clutter-Free Life from Ruth Soukup and Makeover Your Calendar from Crystal Paine?  There’s a lot of content but even if you don’t access every single thing you are winning over and over again.

You have a full year to download the eBooks and printables and take the online eCourses, and everything you’ve downloaded becomes part of your permanent library, so you can go back to it whenever you need it.

YesPlease

Plus, it comes with these FREE bonus offers from companies who know what homemakers need and want. Some are 100% free; other are yours for the cost of shipping only.  I’ve already ordered a handful of these bonuses and they’re AWESOME – and if you choose one or two it pays for the bundle itself – amazing!

Bonuses

 

What’s the catch? It’s available for just 6 days – from now until Monday, May 2nd, 2016 at 11:59pm EST. That’s why the Ultimate Bundles team can offer so much, because they only have permission to sell it for such a short period of time.

Here’s the Clean Mama BONUS!

If you order through MY LINK, forward your receipt to clean.mama at yahoo.com and I’ll send you a direct link for your FREE Homekeeping Foundations Kit ($20 value!) with fillable fields – the perfect companion to this bundle!

Homekeeping Foundations Kit - main - Clean Mama copy

 

The total value is an astonishing $1000+ (plus over $250 in bonuses), but you get it for just $29.97. That’s 97% off what it would cost to buy everything individually!

If you choose to purchase the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle through my affiliate link, I will receive a portion of the sale, but you will not pay any extra.  This is a wonderful product and an amazing deal that I am promoting because I know you’ll love it!  You can see my full disclosure statement here.

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Free Summer 2016 Calendar

Summer 2016 Free Printable Calendar - Clean Mama copy copy

I’ve had so many requests for another summer schedule (you guys loved 2015) and I’m happy to share a new one for you this summer! We’ve been working on getting the summer schedule figured out at our house and since I know that I’m not only one trying to figure out the kids’ schedules, I thought I’d share a simple way to see everyone’s classes and activities at a glance.  Use this for determining what’s enough and what’s too much or for keeping track for schedules all summer long.  I find that laying it out at a glance is the best way to see what’s going to work and what won’t work this summer.

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I left a little room on the top, bottom, and margin of the sheet if you’d like to make a little key and color code the activities/kids.  I hope this is a helpful and useful tool as you lay out the summer and make the most of the these three great months!

Summer 2016 Calendar full - Clean Mama

Go here to download the free Summer 2016 Calendar printable

It’s a FREE download, once you login and save your info, your account will save all of your printables for you and make it easy to save and keep your printables.  Don’t forget to check out the FREE PRINTABLES page too!

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If you like this FREE printable you’ll love my HOMEKEEPING SOCIETY and the organizing printables in my shop!

The aqua binder and notebook are both available in my Clean Mama Home shop and the pens shown are the new PaperMate Ink Joy gel pens (they’re great!).

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Come Clean – Free Cleaning Calendar for May 2016

It’s almost May and that means that it’s time for May’s FREE cleaning calendar!

Come Clean - Free Cleaning Calendar for May 2016 - Clean Mama

Every year I choose a new theme for the cleaning calendar and blog and this year it’s COME CLEAN.  2016 is the year to get your cleaning routine in order, find some new and workable solutions for organizing, hold yourself accountable, and get your home in a routine that works for you and your family.

Feel free to jump in on the self-paced Spring Cleaning Challenge (the link is at the end of the post) – it fits perfectly with my cleaning calendar and will help you spring clean your home.  Make sure you’re subscribed in the sidebar and following along on social media so you don’t miss a thing!

If you’re feeling like you need some help with your cleaning and homekeeping and don’t know where to start, you’re going to love my cleaning routine and calendar. I keep daily homekeeping tasks to 15-30 minutes a day and this simple plan is how I do it! This is a solution for busy households – give it a go, I think you’ll be surprised how a little bit every day can make a huge difference in your home.

Come Clean 2016 - Clean Mama

If you’ve been following Clean Mama for even a week, you know that every day is a chance to start over and so is every week, month, etc. I hope that you find that my cleaning routine is SIMPLE, EASY TO IMPLEMENT, and full of GRACE.

Read on, grab the FREE calendar for MAY 2016 and get ready to see how doing a little bit everyday really is the secret to a clean house.

Here’s an infographic that explains my cleaning routine:

Weekly and daily tasks are detailed at the top, rotating cleaning tasks are on the bottom of the calendar with a little checklist.  How you use the calendar is up to you – put it on a clipboard, in your planner, on your refrigerator.  Use checkmarks, draw lines through tasks or simply keep it up as a reminder.

Come Clean Infographic - Clean Mama

Want to join in on the fun? Grab a FREE cleaning and organizing calendar for May and join me!  Follow along (subscribe in the sidebar) for motivational posts and tips to keep up with the daily and weekly tasks. I also post daily reminders on Instagram and Facebook and have a private Facebook group too called Homekeeping Society (just ask to join and I’ll add you) – it’s great for support and to meet others that are following along with my cleaning routine.

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Go here to grab your FREE calendar for May 2016!

(Please note: You’ll need to put the calendar in your cart and checkout – it’s still FREE – once you create an account it will save any free printables and you can come back and access them anytime. Upon checkout you’ll see the link for the free calendar AND it will also be emailed to you automatically!)

Come Spring Clean Challenge - Clean Mama

Want to spring clean too?  Grab the Come Spring Clean Challenge worksheet here.

Find Out More Homekeeping Society

If you like this FREE printable you’ll love my HOMEKEEPING SOCIETY and the organizing printables in my shop!

Want to up the cute factor in your cleaning?  Check out Clean Mama HOME!

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Don’t miss this bundle!  

 YesPlease

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Shop Update + Clean Mama Home Earth Day Sale!

Today is Earth Day so let’s celebrate with a little Clean Mama Home SALE, shall we?  Glass and microfiber are two excellent ways to green your cleaning and homekeeping – keep reading to see how you can get both for FREE!  Don’t miss the darling shop additions – an AQUA notebook and binder, a Bathroom Cleaning Kit, and a Mason Jar and Microfiber Cloth Kit – hooray!

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I’ve searched high and low for a simple 3-ring binder and notebook and I’ve found the perfect combination – aren’t they darling?

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Make cleaning the bathrooms a breeze with the BATHROOM CLEANING KIT – it almost makes me want to clean the toilets.

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And because an aqua microfiber cloth rolled up in a mason jar is just so cute – I’ve combined the two in a little combo under $10 just for you – MASON Jar + MICROFIBER KIT.

If you haven’t tried MICROFIBER for cleaning, you need to and here’s why:

Clean Mama Home Microfiber Cloths

  • Microfiber can be washed in the washing machine and re-used at least 300+ times (whoa!).
  • Use them for cleaning and dusting – they can be used wet, dry, damp, and with your favorite cleaners.  I consider microfiber to be a multi-purpose tool.
  • Microfiber is lint-free (ditch paper towels for the best clean).
  • Not all microfiber is created equal – Clean Mama Home microfiber is soft to touch (not scratchy), and not only does it help you clean effortlessly, but it looks good too!

How about GLASS spray bottles – what’s the big deal?

spray bottles with 3 labels - cmh

  • Glass spray bottles can be washed in the dishwasher (not the sprayer, but the bottle).
  • I sell a sturdy glass spray bottle – of course it will break if you drop it just like a drinking glass, but it’s a very thick glass that’s made to stand up to use and just about any liquid you put into it.  For what it’s worth, I haven’t broken one and I’ve dropped them a time or two.
  • If you use essential oils in your cleaners and concoctions, it will leech through plastic but it’s much more stable in glass.  Plastic spray bottles are fine, but you might find some with BPA or other chemicals in them that you’d most likely be wanting to avoid if you’re making you own cleaners.  My spray bottles are lead free and the sprayers are BPA free – yay!
  • Doesn’t glass just look so pretty?  I’m all about making cleaning cute!

Now that you want microfiber and glass spray bottles :), here’s how you can get them for FREE (no coupon necessary).

Earth Day Sale 1- Clean Mama Home

Spend $50 (before shipping) in Clean Mama Home and I’ll include a glass spray bottle ($7.99 value) for free!  Spend $100 (before shipping) I’ll include a GLASS spray bottle AND a UTILITY microfiber cloth (aqua) for free (total for 2 items is a $12.98 value).   If you’re an over-achiever, and you get up to $150 in your cart (before shipping) I’ll throw in a POLISHING microfiber cloth (gray) for free (total for 3 items is a $17.97 value).  Please note that the free items will also ship for FREE 🙂

Simply go to Clean Mama Home, add what you’d like to your cart – make sure you get your cart before shipping to $50 or $100 or $150 to get your freebies!  Happy Earth Day!  Hurry, this sale is a quick one and will end on 4/23/2016 at 10 pm CST (NO EXCEPTIONS).

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Pretty Printable Cleaning Checklists

Every month I share a post on BHG.com as an @Home contributor. This month I’m sharing darling printables that will make you want to clean and will hopefully make cleaning feel less like a chore.  You’ll love this post!  You can see all my @Home posts here.

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DIY Cleaners : Fruit + Veggie Spray and Soak

Produce Spray + Soak - Naturally Clean Fruit and Veggies - Clean Mama

With the temperature starting to creep up, the produce selections are getting better and better. You may shop exclusively at your local grocery store, use a CSA for produce or have your own garden. No matter where your produce comes from, it is always wise to use a produce wash in order to remove excess dirt, pesticides and bacteria from the surface. Even organic produce may come in contact with safer pesticides so it is important to wash all your produce no matter what the source.

Fruit and Veggie Wash Ingredients

Wondering why I use what I use as ingredients in my produce wash? The apple cider vinegar serves to cut back on the bacteria and pesticides. Lemon juice is naturally anti-microbial so the combination of these two natural ingredients work in tandem to effectively clean your fruits and veggies. Cleaning your produce also helps to extend their freshness, especially if you wash it as soon as you bring it in to your home. Less waste and less money is a win in my book!

Fruit and Veggie Spray 2 - Clean Mama

I’m sharing with you two ways to clean your produce: a spray method and a soak method. The spray method is ideal for washing individual fruits and vegetables while the soak method works well for washing batches of produce or trickier produce like broccoli. You can use the same recipe found below, it’s just used in a different way. Regardless of what method you use, rest assured that your produce is cleaner thanks to two natural ingredients.

Fruit and Veggie Spray:

  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice (I prefer fresh, but if you want to use prepared lemon juice (Costco has an organic lemon juice), make sure it’s only lemon juice, not any other ingredients)
  • 1/2 cup water

Add ingredients to a spray bottle (make sure it’s clean) and shake to combine. I like to use my glass spray bottles found here for this purpose.  I used a little washi tape and permanent marker to make an easy label.

Make a Label - Clean Mama

Spray liberally on fruits and vegetables and rinse in cold water. Prepare as usual.

Spray Fruit - DIY Fruit and Veggie Spray - Clean Mama

I recommend keeping this in the refrigerator for up to a month for optimal freshness. This recipe can easily be doubled or cut in half as well.

Store in the Refrigerator - Clean Mama

Fruit and Veggie Produce Soak:

Use 1/4 – 1/2 cup (amount depends on how much produce you’re washing) of the Fruit and Veggie Wash along with cold water in a large bowl or your freshly cleaned sink to soak your produce.

DIY Fruit and Veggie Soak 1- Clean Mama

Allow your produce to sit for 5-10 minutes and then rinse with cold water. This works great for all those fresh berries come summer and the vinegar will help them stay fresh longer.

DIY Fruit and Veggie Soak - Clean Mama

Need to mix up more or less produce wash?  You’ll notice that it’s equal parts water, apple cider vinegar, and lemon juice – increase or decrease to fit your needs.

Fruit and Veggie Spray - Clean Mama

This recipe is from my book, The Organically Clean Home – find out more here!

The Organically Clean Home - Clean Mama

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Simplify Mealtime : Put Together a Cutlery Caddy

Simplify Mealtimes with a Cutlery Caddy - Clean Mama

I pulled out this cutlery caddy from the top of the pantry the other day, cleaned it out, and set it back up for use on the kitchen table again.  You see, we used to have it on the table a couple years ago but our youngest starting getting mobile and climbing and everything was game.  That meant he pulled everything out and it was a new target for him.  At the time, I was annoyed that this darling little caddy that made my life easier had to be stashed away (along with so many other things), but as I pulled it out the other night I was thinking about how quickly they grow up and time flies.  So here’s my second attempt at the cutlery caddy – so far, so good!

Cutlery Caddy - Clean Mama

Why this works:

If your meal time is anything like it is in our house, the minute we’re all finally sitting down, someone drops a spoon or a fork, needs a napkin, etc.  Having a simple cutlery caddy simply makes it easier – the kids can set the table from the caddy or help themselves when needed.  Another perk?  It’s ready to take out to the picnic table for impromptu meals on the patio.  Truly, I love it.

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Gather your supplies:

  • caddy – look for something that you love, that matches your decor.  This one is from Crate & Barrel but I’m not seeing it online.  Here’s a darling galvanized steel one that’s similar – I might have to snag it for the patio 🙂
  • I used these Ball canning jars to contain the silverware and straws – I find that the jars keeps things neater and it’s easier to keep clean.
  • items for the caddy – what are you getting up for?  Silverware, straws, salt and pepper, napkins, etc.  I got these darling cloth napkins from HomeGoods – here they are on Amazon, but HomeGoods was much cheaper.

Supplies for Cutlery Caddy - Clean Mama

It’s such a simple solution to one of those annoying problems – have you ever tried a cutlery caddy?

Simplify Mealtimes with a Cutlery Caddy - Clean Mama

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Get Organized With Homekeeping Society | May Essentials

Homekeeping Society - May 2016 - Clean Mama

Do you need some gentle homekeeping help as schedules shift as we start looking toward summer?  May’s Homekeeping Society subscription is up – I hope it’s just what you need to feel successful in your homekeeping. Homekeeping Society has some great changes that make it better, more interactive, AND easier to use!  Make sure you read all the way through the post – there’s a great coupon code if you’d like to try it out!

If you don’t know where to start or are feeling a little defeated, I think you’ll find encouragement in the support Homekeeping Society provides!  Homekeeping Society is intended to be just the gentle nudge you need making your tasks and to dos more enjoyable with a sweet and simple format.  May’s Homekeeping Society is simple – jadeite green and black.  My favorite thing about Homekeeping Society is that each month is different, yet it all looks good together, and it has seasonal touches you’ll love!

Homekeeping Society - May 2016 - Clean Mama

Not sure if Homekeeping Society is for you? Try it out this month and use the coupon code 25OFFMAY for 25% off your FIRST month. Hurry!  Offer ends April 30th, 2016.

Here’s what’s NEW:

  • I have a new Facebook Group – HOMEKEEPING SOCIETY – join if you’re a member of the subscription or not, it’s a special place to discuss homekeeping struggles, tips, and tricks.  It’s a closed group, just ask to join and I’ll add you.
  • I am adding Homekeeping Society to my Etsy shop – you can only purchase one month at a time and you will NOT have access to the previous months.  Don’t want to subscribe?  Want to use PayPal?  This is a great option but you’ll need to repurchase each month instead of it being an automatic payment and download.
  • Another great feature with Homekeeping Society is that you can also access/save/download ALL the previous month’s of HOMEKEEPING SOCIETY!  That’s well over 200 printables that you can use!
  • I also send out an email to all members after the 20th of each month reminding them to log in and download the next month’s subscription and I also include a couple blog posts to help them navigate through the month’s tasks and to do’s – it’s so fun to know that other people are doing the same tasks every day, isn’t it?

Homekeeping Society - May 2016 - Clean Mama

 

Homekeeping Society is simple to use:

  • 2  EASY PRINT  packets are included – simply open and print the pages in ONE step. One version features one of each and the other is set up exactly how the printed version is packaged with 4 pages of the weekly planners, etc. You’ll love how easy this is to use!  Of course, the individual pages are also included, but if you want to print everything in one easy step, you’ll love this. If you want to print back to back, just select that upon printing and print away – easy, peasy!

If you’re a member (log in here) and if you’d like to sign up today, it’s an instant download. The Homekeeping Society MONTHLY SUBSCRIPTION is designed to create order out of your household chaos and help you keep your home tidy with ease and your mind less cluttered.  You can cancel ANYTIME right on your membership screen.  Take a peek at what I’ve created for the month of May – I think you’ll LOVE it!

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Keeping a home clean can be both rewarding and frustrating. Sure, it’s possible to get your home clean, but to keep it that way can be the biggest challenge. Throw in the additions of busy schedules, jobs, kids, chaos, and lack of time and energy and it can feel downright defeating many days. You’ll love the Clean Mama Cleaning Routine included in every month of Homekeeping Society – it truly takes the guesswork out of cleaning and sets it on auto-pilot. If you struggle during the summer with a different routine and more or less free time, Homekeeping Society will help you keep on top of the tasks and provide a little structure.

Go here to sign up for a digital subscription or go here to sign up for the printed for you subscription.

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 I love to provide a ‘virtual’ hand to hold and guide you through the process of cleaning, homekeeping, and creating a home you feel proud of and want to welcome family, neighbors, and friends without thinking twice about the mess behind that front door. The intent of Homekeeping Society is to give you that perfect monthly intervention that is purposefully designed to get your life and home in order with ease. Each month I add different and adorable seasonal touches to keep you motivated to do the daily tasks that get boring and monotonous.

Homekeeping Society - May 2016 - Clean Mama

HERE’S WHAT YOU CAN EXPECT EVERY MONTH (15+ printable documents):

  1. INSTRUCTIONS – tells you how many pages to print out of each page and suggestions for implementing and making the pages work for you – an EASY PRINT option is also included to make printing just one step!
  2. COVER PAGE – with the month – great for putting in your binder or homekeeping notebook to keep each month separated if you choose to keep the pages from month to month.
  3. HOMEKEEPING FOCUS page – every month will focus on a room or area in the home (May is GARAGE + VEHICLES) – this page lays out simple steps and gives you room for making your own adjustments and goals.
  4. TO DO LIST – every month features a new, and highly functional to do list. This month is a simple TO DO LIST with a graph paper – ready for you to use it any way you see fit.  Print one or two and put it front and center – you’ll love it!
  5. DAILY PLANNER PAGE – great for those busy days (or every day!) includes schedule, to dos, notes, and a space for meals
  6. WEEKLY DOCKET– Use the weekly docket to see your whole week and schedule on a page (Sunday start and Monday start are both included)
  7. MENU PLAN FOR THE WEEK WITH A SHOPPING LIST- (Sunday and Monday starts) make a menu plan and take it with you to the grocery store to keep your shopping and planning in check.
  8. MENU PLAN FOR THE MONTH – always includes a list for recipe ideas or ingredients to pick up so you won’t forget to add it to your weekly shopping list.
  9. 2 MONTHLY CALENDARS (1 blank, 1 pre-filled) – suggested daily cleaning tasks, weekly cleaning tasks, rotating cleaning tasks, cleaning and organizing suggestions.
  10. SEASONAL PREPARATION PRINTABLE – a helpful seasonal prep printable is always included in the monthly subscription – perfect for placing in a binder (May is a SUMMER FUN LIST )
  11. KITCHEN SINK QUOTE– the quote for the month – 5×7 – frame and put at your kitchen sink or tape to your fridge to give you a little motivation and inspiration for the month
  12. INFORMATION PAGE – TRAVEL Checklist – pre-filled and blank are included! Fill them out and save in a family info section of your homekeeping binder or notebook and you’ll have a complete information section (insurance, 401K, etc.).
  13. PLUS – access to all previous months’ HOMEKEEPING SOCIETY – well over 200 documents!

This month’s Quote for the Kitchen Sink is one a sweet one – a great reminder to be grateful.  The quote for the kitchen sink can go on your refrigerator, a bulletin board, or even your binder. Put it somewhere that you’ll see it and be inspired by it.

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Want to see more and get on the list? I can’t wait for you to join me! Go here to learn more and sign up for a digital subscription or go here for the printed for you subscription. Want to see some ideas and more information on how to implement Homekeeping Society? Go here to see all the posts and past months of Homekeeping Society!

Not sure if Homekeeping Society is for you? Try it out this month and use the coupon code 25OFFMAY for 25% off your FIRST month.  Hurry!  Offer ends April 30th, 2016.

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PLEASE NOTE: As a member, you will be able to download your digital subscription every month by going to your account page, click on the link for MAY and it will allow you to download the monthly essentials zip file. If you are a member, your essentials are already in your account – yay!

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DIY Cleaners : Marble + Granite Cleaning Spray

Marble + Granite Cleaning Spray - Clean Mama

This isn’t the first time I’ve shared this recipe on the blog and a version of this recipe is also in my book, but since I use it multiple times a day on my kitchen counters I thought it might be time to re-share this recipe.  It’s easily one of my favorites!

If you have granite or marble counters you know that they take a little more care to clean up any spills right away and you also have to be very careful to use only ingredients that are safe to use on them.  Most countertop manufacturers and installers recommend just using dish soap and water, which I use regularly to clean my counters, but I do like a good spray cleaner 🙂  This recipe is a twist on the soap and water but I’ve added a little rubbing alcohol – the reason for this is 3-fold: (1) alcohol kills germs, (2) alcohol helps the water to dry a little more quickly, (3) alcohol is pH neutral – it has the same acidity of water. You can’t use vinegar on stone counters because the vinegar has a pH and over time it will etch away at the finish of your stone.  Not good.  Give this recipe a try – you’ll love how quick it is to mix up and how easy it is to use.

Gather your ingredients and tools…

Ingredients for Marble + Granite Cleaning Spray - Clean Mama

INGREDIENTS:

  • 3 tablespoons rubbing alcohol
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon castile or dish soap (if you want your spray to smell like your dish soap, use that)

TOOLS:

  • measuring cup
  • measuring spoon
  • funnel – this just makes it easier to pour liquid ingredients into a spray bottle
  • spray bottle

Combine ingredients, close spray bottle, shake, and CLEAN!

Marble + Granite Cleaning Spray on Counter

You can purchase the recipe label, spray bottle, and aqua (or white) bar mop towels in my shop, Clean Mama Home.

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More posts in this series – just click on the image to go to the post:

Soft Cleaning Paste - the perfect scrub - Clean Mama

All-Purpose Spray - Clean Just About Anywhere Spary - Clean Mama

The Perfect DIY Glass Cleaner - Clean Mama

DIY Cleaners Ingredient Storage - Clean Mama

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Pamper a Mama Giveaway

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Just popping in to let you know about a great giveaway I’m part of this week – the Pamper a Mama Giveaway.  The giveaway is for over $900 of gift cards to some amazing shops (including $75 to Clean Mama Home).  It’s super easy to enter, simply go to this page, enter your name and email address and that’s it!  You can follow along on Instagram for more details this week on @pamperamamagiveaway.  Thank you for your support!

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Quick Tip : Disinfect with Hydrogen Peroxide

Disinfect Safely with Hydrogen Peroxide - Clean Mama

If you’ve been reading here for any length of time, you know that I love making my own cleaners and coming up with natural ways to clean just about everything.  It occurred to me that I haven’t shared on the blog one of my favorite ways to disinfect the gross stuff around the house (I have some hydrogen peroxide tips in my book, The Organically Clean Home).

Use a Sprayer and the Hydrogen Peroxide Bottle - Clean Mama

Hydrogen Peroxide

What is it?  Its chemical compound is H2O2 – water and oxygen.  It’s a colorless and odorless liquid (it looks like water) with non-toxic whitening (bleaching) properties.  These same properties are also EXCELLENT at killing germs.  It’s typically sold at a 3-6 percent dilution.

How can it be used?  Because of its non-toxic-ness it can be used to disinfect toothbrushes, clean wounds, lighten hair, and CLEAN!

Where can it be used to clean?  Bathrooms and kitchens and laundry rooms – it’s especially good for disinfecting, mold removal, and stains on white clothing.

Are there any precautions?  Hydrogen Peroxide is unstable when it comes in contact with light so you need to keep it in the original brown bottle.  If it comes in contact with colored clothing, carpet, towels, etc. it will bleach the fibers.  It also has an acidity of 11.75 so DO NOT use it on stone (granite, marble, etc.) as it will etch the surface over time.

Where can I find it?  Target, Wal*Mart, any pharmacy and Amazon.

How can I use it?  Use straight out of the bottle if you’re pre-treating a stain (on white clothing).  Mix up with a little baking soda for a cleaning paste, scrub and rinse clean.  This works great for icky grout.  My favorite method? Simply put a sprayer on the bottle, spray on a surface that needs disinfection, let it sit and then rinse clean.  If you want to give germs the one-two punch, you can spray a surface with hydrogen peroxide and follow with white vinegar.  Let it sit and rinse clean.  This is a very potent combination and the two ingredients should NEVER be combined in a container, always keep them separate.  (Personally, I am fine with just the hydrogen peroxide and I don’t spray one after the other.)

Spray on Cutting Boards - Clean Mama

Spray on cutting boards – I only do this if I’ve cut up raw poultry or meat – and run through the dishwasher or hand wash.

Spray in Kitchen Sink to Disinfect - Clean Mama

Spray in the kitchen sink to disinfect – let it sit and rinse clean.  I always spray quite a bit in the drain part to disinfect the drain and garbage disposal area.

Spray Bathroom Sinks - Clean Mama

Use it in the bathroom to disinfect toilets and sinks.  Spray liberally, let it sit for 10 minutes or so and wipe clean.

If you’re using a cloth to wipe surfaces down after spraying with hydrogen peroxide, make sure that it’s white so you aren’t bleaching out any colored cloths.  The Clean Mama Home white bar mops work great!

white bar mop towels - cmh

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Put Together a Dusting Caddy : Dusting + Furniture Care Essentials

Dusting and Furniture Care Essentials - Clean Mama

Dusting and furniture care may or not be on your radar, but if you have furniture and woodwork in your home, you can benefit from putting together a bucket or basket with some products and tools that you will need at some point.  I enjoy taking good care of furniture and woodwork – it makes your home look better and most definitely will make your furniture last longer.

I keep my furniture and dusting caddy (bucket) in my cleaning closet – seen here on the far right side of the middle shelf.  It’s easily accessible and holds just about everything I ever need for doing a little furniture polishing and maintenance.

Cleaning Closet Shelf - Clean Mama

I keep my weekly dusting essentials in the bucket – I like having everything at the ready for Tuesday (Tuesday is dusting day) and I’ve found that keeping it all in one place is convenient and keeps me from wasting time looking for supplies and tools.

 Weekly Dusting Essentials - Clean Mama

For weekly dusting, I simply use a microfiber duster and quickly move through the house dusting each and every surface.  When surfaces need a little more cleaning and polishing (every other week or so), I use my Clean Mama Home Utility microfiber cloth with a dusting and cleaning spray.  (My 2 favorites are Murchison-Hume Everyday Furniture and Upholstery Cleaner and Better Life Naturally Dust Defying Wood Polish).  You can also see my weekly dusting must-haves on my Around the House page on the blog – I detail some favorites for cleaning by day of the week and provide links for products as well.

Tuesday is Dusting Day

Maintenance Dusting Essentials - Clean Mama

These products are great for polishing furniture, covering up scratches, and making worn wood shine. I keep them in the caddy so I can use them as necessary – if I’m dusting and see a scratch, I’ll correct it on the spot in lieu of waiting for another time.

Furniture Care and Maintenance Products - Clean Mama

There you have it – a quick and easy bucket of favorite weekly and as-needed tools to dust and shine every inch of the home.  What’s your favorite dusting product or tool?

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Update : Free Printables

I’ve been working on a couple updates on the blog and I thought I’d show one of them to you today…

FREE PRINTABLES page

Clean Mama Free Printables

The FREE PRINTABLES page is updated with the hope that it’s super easy to download any or all of my free printables in minutes.  Enter your email address and instantly download/save printables to your computer.  Pin the page and save it for later 🙂

Not sure how to navigate to the FREE PRINTABLES page? Go to the PRINTABLES tab and click FREE PRINTABLES.  You can also access a thorough FAQ page and my shop.

Clean Mama Free Printables Tab

Once you get to the page (you’ll need to leave your email address), you’ll see a variety of free printables in categories – click on the DOWNLOAD link on any of the printables that you’d like.

Free Printables Page - Clean Mama

Then once the printable pops up, click on the ARROW/COMPUTER symbol to download to your computer.  That’s it!

How to Download a Free Printable

Heads up – the SPRING CLEANING SALE in my shop and this bundle ends on 4/9/15.

Clean Mama's Cleaning Bundle - Clean Mama

Spring Cleaning Sale Banner - Clean Mama

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