As the weather begins to change and warmer days are just around the corner, a guilty feeling starts to come out of hibernation with you. Winter is a dark, cold season that creates the perfect atmosphere to slack off on chores resulting in untidy and disorganized cars, yards and houses. For most of us, cleaning does not make our top three “things I like to do list” which can make the spring cleaning season a little stressful. Fortunately there are some helpful books that can get you started on the right track for spring cleaning, and instill core rules and tips to follow in the future to keep a neat and organized home.
What’s A Disorganized Person To Do by Stacey Platt is a simple, motivating book that will inspire a more organized lifestyle. Platt breaks the home down into sections including: kitchen, bathroom, living room and foyer, sharing over 300 tips and ideas to help transform every area into a more spacious and relaxed environment. After making some simple changes, your home can have a more clean and orderly appearance, leaving you always impressing house guests.
To help you with cleaning everything and anything, check out Feather Your Nest by Cerentha Harris, Clean Your House and Everything in it by Eugenia Chapman and How To Clean Practically Anything by Consumer Reports Books. Did you know that you can remove sharpie (permanent marker) from almost any surface? In Feather Your Nest, you will learn hundreds of cleaning tricks, including tips on removing permanent marker stains. For example you can remove a sharpie stain on any plastic surface by coloring over the sharpie mark with a dry erase marker and simply using a cloth to wipe, which will remove both the sharpie stain and the dry erase marker. This book also has page after page filled with how to’s for cleaning lighting fixtures, blankets, handbags, fireplaces and more. Clean Your House and Everything in It by Eugenia Chapman & Jill C. Major; breaks down the home into different sections, so you can easily turn to the bathroom section when you are faced with a stain on your shower wall and find solutions for cleaning it. Chapman also covers regular upkeep and maintenance routines around the house. Consumer Reports has put together an incredible cleaning book comparing products to tackle routine housework. This book is filled with consumer ratings from garbage bags to chemical drain cleaners and endless other household cleaning products. Consumer Reports also gives you insight on what is causing a problem and what ingredients in a product help for a solution. For example stains in the toilet bowl are mainly from a buildup of minerals and most in-bowl toilet cleaners use acid to dissolve the buildup to remove the stains. When coupling Feather Your Nest with Clean your House and Everything in it and How To Clean Practically Anything you can become an unstoppable cleaning expert.
There are three key steps for keeping any house tidy; organizing, cleaning and the often avoided step of throwing out. Unfortunately most of us seem to have slight hoarding tendencies. We can become afraid to throw out a shirt with a stain because of a good memory while wearing it or we become overwhelmed with guilt when contemplating throwing out an ugly Christmas gift. In both these scenarios most of us would rather put the item in a storage box and forget about it in the basement than throw it out. In Clutter Control, author Jeff Campbell guides you in making the decision whether to keep an item or when it’s time to close the dumpster lid on it. Campbell provides helpful tips and rules when making the “Keep, Sell, Donate and Toss “list to help you take back your house. Clutter Control is a great book for those of us who would rather own five storage units then put our items in the trash. Campbell strongly encourages you to throw out unneeded items and he helps you be honest with yourself on what you can let go. Throw Out Fifty Things by Gail Blanke is also a helpful tool when making tough decisions on letting go of material possessions. Designed in a story like format, Blanke takes you on a journey while putting you to work on de-cluttering your home.
Cleaning is a great way to relieve stress, keep your mind busy and stay productive. At first it can seem overwhelming to look at a mess, but with some useful books you can take any pile of unorganized clothes and items, and find eye pleasing ways to store them. It’s time to transform your home and lifestyle into organized!
~ Jacqueline is a library assistant at the Oliver Wolcott Library