I am no fly lady. I’m not going to revolutionise your life by telling you to start by cleaning the sink (it works though, before you know it you’ll have cleaned the whole house). But we do have issues with housework in the Alexander Residence. We’re in an awful rut right now. But I did clean the bathroom at last.
I hate cleaning my own house. But as a chamber maid in my student days I derived some kind of weird pleasure from restoring a room back to it’s sparkly state. Because bathrooms don’t get too cluttered, I don’t mind having to clean the bathroom so much. The playroom makes me shudder, I need to psyche myself up before I can tackle it. Cleaning the bathroom though, is a very good place to start.
It helps if you have a bathroom that’s simple and functional, as few nooks and crannies. Ideally it would be a wet room:
1. Fix the broken stuff, toilets that the kids can’t flush easily, taps that drip, grout round the bath that’s come unstuck, the broken shower part over the bath. These things annoy on a daily basis and make attempting to clean the bathroom tougher.
2. Invest in something with drainage holes to bung all the toys in, and enough storage to keep things out of sight, shower shelves to keep things together in the shower or pots round the sink so they can be lifted easily.
3. Clean the shower while showering. The only way to tackle mouldy grout is to use bleach and leave it to work its magic. A scrub with an abrasive cloth or a toothbrush and it should vanish pretty quickly. A bleach spray will mean you make more sparing use of chemicals.
4. Get the kids to clean the bathroom while they are in the bath. You’ll be teaching them valuable skills. It is a myth you need to use harsh chemicals, soap and water is perfectly fine, followed by a rinse after. Works for cleaning both children and bathroom surfaces.
5. I never manage to drag the mop and bucket upstairs. Instead wait ’til the kids have soaked the floor, spray on some cleaning stuff and give it a superfast wipe with an old towel.
6. Cleaning the toilet should always be delegated to the men of the house, they make the most mess. They do need to know that smells linger around the floor and under the seat and not just in the bowl. Disposable wipes make this job easier.
7. After suffering with silly little sponges with scourers on for years, I discovered that microfibre cloths make much quicker work of sinks, tiles and baths, you often don’t need any cleaning stuff because they lift so much dust and scum themselves. One for cleaning and one for polishing works well in the bathroom.
8. Old newspaper is an old trick my mum taught me for polishing mirrors and windows, you don’t need chemicals.
So those are my secrets, what are yours? Which room do you love to clean and which do you hate?