The Lazy Ladies Guide to Cleaning House – Big Time Basics

There are certain times when even a Lazy Lady has to do it right. Moments when no matter how much you wish you could, you can’t cut corners. Such moments come in the form of; the In-Laws coming for dinner, a party being hosted in your house, or a holiday celebration for the entire family (including ‘holier-than-thou’ Aunt Anna the bitch with the perfect house, perfect kids and perfect life…) It is at these moments that you will learn the most valuable of lessons that any lazy lady can ever learn, lessons on such things as efficiency, effectiveness, and all-round effort. It is during these trying time that all the tips and tricks provided in this section will suddenly make sense to you…

For now there are a few basics that every Lazy Lady needs to learn before she even attempts to lift a finger. So settle in, get yourself a drink, and get ready to get educated… Oh, and don’t worry true to the lazy ladies lifestyle, I promise this won’t be difficult!

Big Moment Basics Every Lazy Lady Should Know:

  • Like the All-In-One Hammer/Screwdriver/Level you got your husband for his Birthday, the first tip in time-saving cleaning secrets is the all-in-one cleaner. Why carry around 4 different bottles that do 4 different things when you can carry just 1? Search out the best all-in-one brands and stock-up.
  • Most of our cleaning time is wasted just looking for supplies, so to save time an effort keep your cleaning products close at hand and ready to use by stocking them in an easy to carry caddy. This way when it is time to clean you have everything you need all in one place.
  • Don’t strain yourself scrubbing. Many products work better when left to sit, but many of us don’t give our cleaners the time to do their job. Spray down the shower during a commercial break and simply wipe it clean during the next. Allowing the solution to sit will greatly reduce scrubbing time on your part and actually get the job done more quickly and with better results.
  • Forget the feather duster. Feather dusters went out with flash dance, if you want to save time on dusting use a damp rag, or even a baby wipe. You may opt for the Swiffer Duster as well, which works fine, but a damp cloth will get the job done at a fraction of the price and just as well. If you have little knickknacks around your house that require regular dusting, consider popping them in the dishwasher instead, it’s a great way to get rid of all the dust without the added effort.
  • Listen to your mama. Mother probably told you more than once to start at the top and work your way down, this is one piece of advice you want to take. Do your dusting and wiping before you clean your floors or you are going to have to do it over, and for a lazy lady, doing it twice is not an option!
  • All Hail the Hoover! Sweeping is a waste of time as far as I am concerned. All sweeping does is send dust spinning around the room. No matter how many times I sweep the floor there is always dirt and hair left when I go to mop, instead of feeling frustrated, let your hoover do the dirty work and vacuum up any crumbs, dust and hair. Having a good vacuum can make a huge difference on the amount of effort you spend cleaning your house. Trust me, if your going to invest in anything get yourself a good sucker with a long cord.
  • Lastly, Save the kitchen until the end. Cleaning your kitchen at the beginning of a clean sweep is a sure-fire way to waste your time. Kitchens are the hardest room to clean and they require the most attention. Saving your kitchen until last also helps prevent endless dishes from piling up as you straighten other rooms in the house. Get the easy stuff done before tackling the “big kahuna.”

These are the basics, the golden rules that every lazy lady should keep in mind during big time clean-ups. Soon to come are tips and tricks for cleaning it quick and keeping it that way… So stay tuned!

 

Until Next Time,

Shove it in the closet!

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The Lazy Ladies Guide to Cleaning House

I am not sure if cleanliness is part of our DNA, but if it is, I definitely missed out on that gene during my conception. Perhaps that was the tadpole that swam slower than the rest because he was too busy cleaning up after himself. Whatever the case, I don’t have it in me to keep a perfect house, no matter how hard I try. (or pretend to try anyway) 

Sure, I would love to have a beautiful home. In fact, I often stare at the photos in glossy magazines of sparkling kitchens with clear counter tops and beautiful bathrooms with pearl white toilets and shiny tiles, free of mildew and soap stains. I dream of a bedroom like the ones in the Ikea Catalog where every inch of the sheet is neatly tucked and each pillow is perfectly fluffed. I want a beautiful home just as much as the next woman, but I want the beautiful home without the added effort, and since I am far to poor to afford a maid, I have learned a great many things about cleaning quickly and effectively without effort or strain.

I’ll admit openly that I am lazy. Not lazy in the sense that I sit around and eat bon-bon’s all day while watching cheesy soap operas, (though some days I am tempted) but lazy in the sense that scrubbing floors and washing dishes on a never-ending basis drives me insane and causes me a great deal of stress. I love to result of cleaning, but I have a deep despise for the act of cleaning itself.

One thing I have noticed over the years is that many people with seemingly spotless homes are liars. I have a dear friend that has 4 children under the age of five, and a full-time job. Her house is always amazingly spotless, on the surface. It is when you start to look at a person’s home closely that you start to notice the difference between clean, tidy and liar! Many people with spotless houses are actually filthy deep down. Now, although I am a ‘lazy lady‘ at heart I simply hate filth. I can handle dirt, clutter and occasional chaos, but outright filth makes my skin crawl.

And so…

I have started this section “The Lazy Ladies Guide to Cleaning House” to help other ‘lazy ladies’ like me find easy and effective ways to keep their house clean (and I mean actually clean) without the extra effort it would usually take. This section will share simple tricks, little lessons and sworn secrets to keeping a clean house without the struggle.

Stay tuned as there will be a piece of advice for everyone. Whether you want to clear the clutter quickly, keep up with the Joneses, or simply look like you have it all together all the time, this section will have tips and tricks for you.

Just like the heading says “Tips, Tricks, Advice and Warnings from an Undomesticated Diva” I will show you the secret to a clean house without the work.

 

Until Next Time,

Kick Back and Relax

The Habits of the Hopeless Hamster …. a.k.a I Hate Housework!

Have you ever seen a hamster with one of those wheels in its cage? You know those sad little wheels to nowhere? The hamster, poor stupid little thing, climbs on the wheel and just keeps going, and going, and going…. it never gets anywhere, and yet still, it just goes…

For me this correlative to the never-ending cycle that is housework. You wake up at 6 a.m. and dust every speck of dirt, mop until you can see your reflection in the floors, vacuum up every little fluff, crumb and clipping, scrub, scrape, and slather every surface imaginable… yet by 6 p.m… it all needs to be done again! The difference???? The stupid hamster actually likes the damn wheel…. but I hate housework!!

I hate housework, and because of this, as you can imagine, I am not the worlds greatest housekeeper. No, my house is not dirty, it is though regularly messy! There is a big difference between dirty and messy though, I have clutter, not filth.

I found a great poem about housework and I thought I would share it here, it sums up my thoughts on housework in general….

Housework Can Wait 

Come in, but don’t expect to find
All dishes done, all floors a shine.
Observe the crumbs and toys galore.
The smudgy prints upon the door.
The little ones we shelter here
Don’t thrive on a spotless atmosphere.
They’re more inclined to disarray
And carefree even messy play.
Their needs are great, their patience small.
All day I’m at their beck and call.
It’s Mommy come! Mommy see!
Wiggly worms and red scraped knee.
Painted pictures, blocks piled high.
My floors unshined, the days go by.
Some future day they’ll flee this nest,
And I at last will have a rest!
Now you tell me which matters more,
A happy child or a polished floor?

…Author Unknown

In a sense this is the way I view housework. As a busy single mother of two, I would much rather have happy children than a showcase home. I want my children to be able to play in my house. I don’t want to have to worry about them sitting on the couch, spilling on the rug, or getting smudges on the walls. Truthfully, living that way takes far too much effort for me, I am too distracted by ‘real life’ to live in a perfect little bubble…. and far too lazy! I am lucky to remember to vacuum at all, let alone daily, and I doubt that I could train ‘L’ to do the work for me… child services might frown upon a 9 month-old with a hoover strapped to her back, and sponges tied to her knees….

So there may be papers on the counter, clutter in the hall, toys on the floor, or smudges on the mirrors… If you don’t like it, feel free to pick up a cloth and get cleaning. I will gladly step out of your way and let you work. In fact, I will do one better I will leave and let you work…. perhaps I could go shopping! The kids could get a pet hamster, and you could clean its cage!!!

Wow, Was I Ever Naive…The End Of Fairy Tale Living!

I guess I should start this blog with a brief history of how I got to be where I am today, an outspoken, outrageous, and admittedly insane, single mommy of two little devils angels. And so the story goes…..

Once upon a time, a time about 25, (or so) years ago, a little girl was born on Grey Cup Sunday to two extremely proud parents. This little girl was a miracle to her parents, who were told they would never be able give birth to a child. Having adopted another little girl three years earlier, they were shocked when their adopted daughters request for a “baby brother” from christmas amazingly came true, well sort of. The other daughter, although happy to have a playmate, was expecting a little “brother” not a little “sister“, she was disappointed, but she made due with what she was given, and the two generally got on well.

 Raised in the city, and later (despite her contention) moved to a smaller town, this little girl grew up with big dreams. She would be famous, she would sing, dance, write, and, of course, be rich. She would travel the world, meet prince charming, and live happily-ever-after. There was no clause in this dream that included children, no vision of runny noses, teary eyes, puke splattered blouses, or overflowing diaper pails. No, Life was set to be perfect. This little girl lived in a fairytale world, until one day the storm of reality suddenly hit. WTF happened to the fairy tale?

I’ll spare all the gruesome details, but needless to say her dreams were hogwash. (Yes, I just used the word hogwash as a grown adult, that is not a cast member of  Harry Potter, or an eighty-year-old granny type, yelling at small children.) But hogwash they were….

There was no fame, unless you count the less than appealing fans at the local karaoke dive bar. There was no fortune, certainly there was no fortune, and there was no prince charming… there was instead many losers in shining tin-foil, tears, fights, and a whole lot of bad choices.

This is how I got where I am today…. and all the glam and glory that comes along with it.

I am an uncoventional parent, some may call me naive, I am the ‘sit back and see what happens’ kind of parent… not only due to my lack of participation, but more because I have this strange belief that children, if left to their own devices, will make the right choices. (Of course I highly suggest that before you “sit back and see what happens” you take the time to think of every possible “what’s the worst that could happen” scenario, no matter how implausible it may seem. For some reason children are far more creative when it comes to disaster than we give them credit for.)

I don’t pretend to be a perfect mother, in fact I have done many things that other “perfect” mothers would surely shake their heads at, things that would have them grabbing up their children and running for their pristine, suburban homes. Sometimes, in my house we have dessert for breakfast, or dinner or even lunch. I have allowed my child to drink cola *gasp*, and I order pizza on a semi-regular basis. I have forgotten breakfast once or twice, and I am not well-known for my cooking abilities. My house is NOT immaculate, there are dishes in the sink, dust bunnies under the couch, and toys on the floor. (Although I believe it is a generally clean and safe environment.) I do not always get my son to school on time, and there have even been occasions where I did not get him to school at all. I do not seek out, and spend, excessive amounts of money on “organic” products, or use “all-natural” healing methods, when my children are sick I give them Advil, and I thank God for the few moments of peace the doped up state provides me. My children get dirty, and sometimes go to bed that way, but more often than not they are happy, they are healthy, and they are safe. To me that is all that parenting is about, if you disagree, well go ahead and chase your child around with a bottle of Lysol, it’s your legs, and mind, that suffer not mine!

There are times, for me, when being a single mother of two is a lot like watching a train wreck…. in slow motion, over and over again…. especially when you have the amazing ability that I have to do all the wrong things, or right things, at the wrong time.

The truth is I dislike children! Sure I have two of my own that I love, but all other children go immediately on the “dislike list” until further examination. The “like list (which is just another form of the “dislike list”) is reserved for my own children, those that are part of my immediate family…. and a select group of others that have been subjected to a delicate, detailed process of in-depth analysis. The “dislike list” is longer by far! 

But as I said before I love my children, and despite the fact that my 7 year-old ‘C’ has bad table manners, poor hygiene, cries at the drop of a hat, and shoots strangers with his super spy gun, he is great.  And although 9 month-old ‘L’ doesn’t sleep, eat, stay still, stay quiet, or stop crying she is beautiful and amazing, and I would do anything I could to make them happy, even though it often feels like they do everything they can to make me unhappy… I am sure they don’t mean to do it on purpose…. even I could not raise such evil children as that I am sure.

Still, we have fun, and even with peanut butter sandwich dinners, and long sleepless nights, we are happy, healthy and generally sane. And so, although my Fairy Tale life was shattered once-upon-a-time, long-long-ago, my new reality is being created everyday, in the most unconventional, and interesting ways.