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The photo is my son and myself. Now days you can get a photo made to look old like this one. This photo was taken when this was the new look.

Harry S Truman was president when I was born and world war II had ended. I grew up in a time when lunch was put in a brown paper bag and a sandwich was wrapped with wax paper. There was no such thing as pantyhose, we wore stockings that attached to the rubbery clippy things that attached to the girdle. Convenience stores were not common and when we took a trip we packed a picnic basket because many places did not have fast food. Highways had places to pull over and stop, some with picnic tables. Read more ....
 

Cleaning Like the Past part two

February 21, 2013
 
Get Real with Cleaning our houses like they did in the past but now in the present
I could write all kinds of organizing suggestions but you have two choices.  Hire someone or do it  yourself. When our generations before us cleaned their homes there were no fancy appliances as we have today but they did not shy from housework.  If we cannot keep a clean house today with all the helpful appliances then it comes down to a health problem or being lazy. A health problem is understandable and if you cannot afford help or if your family is not willing to help then you may have to live in a dirty house.  I have no answers for this.  But if you can manage to do something.... we will proceed.
If  you have a pile of laundry waiting to be washed, it is not going to jump up all by itself and pile into the washer or washtub and wash itself.  "Most likely no one else is going to do this so let’s get it over with”.
 
I keep a bowl of grated soap for all kinds of quick cleaning jobs
 
Such as cleaning the toilet bowl
 
I don't normally suggest using paper towels but this is one area that I do keep and use paper towels and that is in the bathroom.  I keep a paper towel holder next to the medicine cabinet for cleaning the toilet and the floor around the toilet. You can use a old cloth to save on money.
 
Back to the toilet. I do a daily swish with this bit of grated soap and a toilet brush, then a once a week deep cleaning of the entire bathroom.
 
This is where the paper towel comes in handy.  Wet the paper towel and rub it over the bar of soap and just wipe down the toilet seat and rim of the toilet bowl each day.  It only takes a couple of minutes to swish the bowl with soap and then wipe down the toilet.
Again, there is no easy way to clean.  It simply must be done by someone an this is not bad if you stay up on it daily.
 
Our toilet is 52 years old and it has a water stain where the water stops but it that does not mean it is dirty just old.
 

Many people want a easy way to clean a house but there is no easy way if you want a clean and organized house.  You have to do the work or just sit and watch it pile up.  You either wash the dishes or let them sit.  If they sit then the food dries on the pots, pans and plates and then you have even more work scrubbing and wasting a lot of water.  Have I ever left dirty dishes?  Yes, how do you think I know that dried on food is harder to wash.
 
 
My home has been a real mess at times and especially when we moved my Dad in with us due to strokes and cancer and then my Mom due to cancer and dementia. They had been divorced for years and both had their own households.  A lot of their things especially paperwork and small stuff we could not just throw away at that time so it moved in with them and some of their furniture so they would feel comfortable. 
 
My husband and I moved our bed to a room the size of a walk in closet when we moved my Mother to our house. We filled every shelf with all the things that needed sorting through but there was not time due to care giving so there it sat. At least it was off the floor and put somewhere.
We have a small house that had already merged households so I am the Queen of "Stuff”.  It has taken a very long time to sort, toss, give away and organize but I never gave up.  To this day I still little by little let go of things.  During all that time I still cleaned the dirt.  It might not have looked like that because of all the clutter but I did.
 
Photo above is our livingroom.
Several years ago I ripped out the carpeting and painted the floors because we could not afford to replace the old carpet.  I have never regretted doing this.
 
It is unrealistic to expect your home to look like the pictures in magazines but you can still get it clean with soap and water.  Many of the pictures in magazines are staged pictures, the area is decorated and set up for the pictures so they can sell the magazine or post the article. If you live in your home then things will get out of place.  The same thing happens in the fashion and cosmetic magazines, they are fixed pictures, the flaws have been removed.  That is the unreal side of life. Spend a day with a nurse working in a hospital and you will see what real people look like and what can happen in to us in the real world, this could put things into perspective.  What does following a nurse around for one day have to do with cleaning house?  It has a lot to do with it.  Our lives are fragile and anything can happen to us or our family at any time and we need to keep things in order so we don’t get caught unprepared.
So what would be considered important?
 
It is important that our home has some kind of order and important papers and bills have a place. 
That linens have their space and it is important that our home is sanitary and the air in our home is clean.  I am not talking about living in a sterile environment but a clean home.  A dirty home can actually make you sick. 
 
Like I mentioned above our bathroom is over 50 years old.
It does not matter if your home is old or new what matters is that certain things in a home should be kept sanitary and that includes bathrooms, kitchens and bedding.  A refrigerator should be cleared of old or spoiled food and the shelves should be cleaned.
 
If something is out of place but it is clean underneath this is an easy fix, if something is out of place on a filthy floor or counter then you need to do something about this and the only way is to stop procrastinating and get busy.  TV, Computer time, game time can come after chores have been done and there is a good probably that electronic gadgets are robbing you of valuable time. 
If you are working outside the home then there is only one thing to do and that is to stay up late, get up early or hire help.  On days off you get up early and start cleaning.  Once you get things caught up then stay on top of it. 
 
I don’t believe in pity parties. I have heard so many times, "I don’t have time for myself”.  You would have never heard this coming from our Great Grandparents generation.  If you have a family or a spouse then they are priority and keeping a clean house and well fed children is your priority.  If you live alone then you already have time to yourself.  If you are the type that needs time to yourself then don’t have children.  There is no other way to put this. In this entire article when I use the words "clean house” I am not talking about a messy house where things are scattered and out of place, all houses get messy.  I use clean which in this article means free of dirt, grime, soil, dust, contaminated waste.  You need a clean kitchen and a stocked kitchen so you can prepare meals and not waste money on take out meals.
 
     If you have children then teach them by example. And this goes for men too.  Often in today’s world both men and women work or the man may be the one that take cares of the children and the house.  If both husband and wife or partner work then it is equal responsibility. When it comes to children then it does not matter if one works and one stays home, both parents have equal responsibility to care for that child and give that child the attention that he/she needs.  It is a parents responsibility to love, nurture and teach that child about their world and how to grow up to be a responsible adult.
A child is totally dependant on their parents.  They cannot provide even their own basic needs.  If you have a child then you must be a responsible parent and that means you must give them a clean home, proper food, clothing, medical care and love. 
If one spouse stays home to take care of the household and the other leaves for outside work or works a job at home that "Working” person is not cleared of  household chores or children's and pet needs.  The one staying home is also working and this should not be overlooked. 
 
There are always dishes to be washed
 
There is a lot of work to do for the one staying home.  A marriage is a joint union and that means both people work together and not be selfish. If all you think about is what you want this leads to disappointment and possible arguments.  You should work together, this will lead to more time to do fun things. It seems today that we live in a me world, "what about me?” If you are a me person then you should not get married and raise a family or get a pet. If your spouse or partner is tired then step in and help them.
 
My Grandson fishing, he is the sweetest young man and extremely polite and I am very proud of him. He always says yes mam and no mam and he has set goals in his life.  I believe that he will reach them.
 

This is my other Grandson and he is very allergic to peanuts and other foods. I am proud of my daughter for how she has become a wonderful wife, mother, teacher, cook and homemaker.
 
If a child lives in a home and their mother and father are laying around a filthy house, then what are you teaching them?  If they hear you whining or sassy then what do you think you have taught them?  If you feed them take out food or junk food all the time then be ready to watch them grow up unhealthy.  If you don’t care then they don’t care. 
 
This is the grill on the bottom front of the refrigerator. 
This is something that does not need to be overlooked that should be cleaned a couple time a year.
 
Vacuum under this area before replacing the grill.
Again keeping it real.....
If you live by yourself in a filthy house then you need to go to the doctor and have your health or head checked because you don’t have any other excuse.
Many people now are single parents or live by themselves so there is no "Other” to help.  So everything must be done by you so there is no reason to think that soap scum is going to magically disappear. You must roll up your sleeves and get to work.
 
I like things about the house especially family photos
 
There are going to be certain areas in your house that are clutter areas.  It is almost impossible to live in your home and not have these areas and some people like things all around them.  Some people like cleared almost naked rooms and some like very decorated rooms with nicknacks and both are fine but I am not talking about decorating.
 
I am talking about clean which leads me to talk about the Chair rats.
I have seen a lot of chair rats.  This is my term for the people that have a favorite chair and possibly a table next to it and the table is overflowing with all kinds of papers, dust, sticky spots, objects and probably things sitting on the floor all around this chair.  The chair probably has food crumbs and stains since this chair is also a place to eat.  To me this is a sign of trouble, at least it has been in my case.  This was a sign of decline in my parents and other family members health.  If you are not elderly or your health is not bad and you are a chair rat then possibly something needs adjusting in your life.  Maybe you need to get out more or have a health check up.  If you have things under control and your home is clean and you like your chair area to be cluttered then ok as long as there is nothing wrong and there is not layers of dust and dirt mixed in with this clutter because there can be organized clutter.  If you are reading this and you are noticing that this is happening in one of your family members homes then you may need to do more than take notice just in case something is wrong. For sure this person is not getting proper exercise.
 
If the house is a total disaster and you don’t know where to start, then Make the beds, wash the dishes, put on some wash, and vacuum or sweep to start.  Then tackle the other stuff like putting things away or taking time to sort and throw away.
 
If you are reading this and you are getting up there in age then one thing I want to mention.  Start shredding your paper clutter and sort through all the "Stuff” that you have collected.  Do you really need all that kitchen plastic or all those clothes that you have not worn in years.  Start doing this now before your health declines so your children will not have to deal with your clutter when you get to that time when you need care or after you are gone.  We are all going to leave this life as we know it some day so why not get rid of the junk and leave them with the nice things you have.
 
 
To keep a house clean you have to do certain things.
Keep your laundry and dishes done
Don’t store things on the floor so you can keep your floors clean
Dust often
Mop the floors
Move furniture away and clean under it every so often
Take off your shoes before entering the house will help greatly keeping dirt out of the house.
Clean your bathrooms regularly
Clean your mirrors and windows
Clean your window seals so when you open your windows dust won’t blow in.  I recently helped someone clean a house that the dust actually blew out when opening the windows.
Open your windows often for fresh air.
Wash your curtains at least once or twice a year
Change the air filter on air conditioners and central units often
Vacuum under the refrigerator
Clean ceiling fans
Sort out things regularly
Keep paperwork filed or shredded
Wash bedding at least once a week
Wash your pets
Wash your pets bowls often
Clean out the refrigerator
Rotate pantry supplies
Mend clothing
Donate items not used or store them properly
An important suggestion, don’t box up things because then you will be living with boxes of things.  You need to simply make decisions what to keep and what to toss and to fit into the space you have.  If you have a large house you have room for more things and personally I don’t envy anyone that has a large house because I don’t want to pay a utility bill that high.  If you have a tiny house, trailer or apartment then get rid of things and fit into that space.  If you are living in a very small space temporary then possibly rent a storage unit for awhile but anything in a storage unit can get stinky, buggy or damaged.
These are just some of the things for keeping the inside of your house clean.  The outside is a whole different topic and I have not mastered that as of yet.
 
 

 
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