3 Ways to Make Spring Cleaning Easier

Hey, it’s Spring again! It’s been so long since you came over to my house. How long is it now? Nine months? Well, probably. By the way, I apologize for the messy state of this place. I really couldn’t find time to give it a clean-up when Winter was here. I must admit to my laziness. My body could hardly deal with freezing weather and constant snow, or just the mere idea of getting up early to dust, sweep and mop to keep my house sparkling clean.

However, the fact that you are here with your lovely companions – warmer weather and brighter, sunnier days – makes even the most uninterested-in-cleaning person like me want to do some spring cleaning. I have an idea. How about I make a list of less labor-intensive and more satisfying ways to clean up while you are here sipping this wonderfully fragrant jasmine tea? It sounds promising, doesn’t it?

Great, let me compile my list of the ways to make spring cleaning easier:

Make use of your vacuum

Hey Spring, do you know that we can use our vacuums to clean more than just floors? I think spring cleaning is the best time to put our vacuums to work at their full potential. First, run them on the furniture that lies higher up like walls, shelves, bookcases, windowsills, curtains, tables, table tops, sofas and chairs, as well as almost anything else in our lovely house. Then, move to clean the floors and the furniture at floor level. By doing this, we can clean up all the dust and other dirty little things that fall from higher to lower places.

The trick here is investing in a small, light-weight but strong vacuum, and getting cozy with all of its attachments. We can pay a little more for add-on specialty attachments such as a softer brush, a crevice tool or an extension wand. With these attachments, cleaning up a small space and working around easy-to-break household equipment, such as lamps or bed frames, are no longer issues. There are also cordless vacuums available for purchase, which saves us plenty of time fooling aroundwith plugging them in or changing sockets from time to time.

Clean tile grout with oxygen bleach

Cleaning filthy grout lines is a nightmare for most people. However, I have recently discovered one “magical product” to make the bathroom floor sparkling clean, thanks to Tim Carter’s Ask The Builder section on The Washington Post. Hey Spring, have you ever heard of powdered oxygen bleach? Yes, to clean tile grout, we only need to mix any high-quality oxygen bleach with warm water and stir the mixture until it dissolves. Pour it on the grout lines when they are dry. Give the solution at least 15 minutes to soak deeply.

The trick here is the longer we leave the solution on the floor, the less labor-intensive our clean-up is. However, it is not recommended to leave the mixture on the floor overnight. While waiting, I will try to finish my summer internship application and catch up on all the homework I have after spring break. How about you, Spring?

Take minimalism to the next level

Since the publication of Marie Kondo’s influential book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing, in 2011, people have been so obsessed with minimalism. My God, Spring, look at this mess! I want to throw things away so bad. But, on second thought, I think it is better to focus on things we want to keep instead of things we want to toss. Stand in front of each item (or a bunch of them) and ask: “Do I use it regularly? And does it spark joy?” If the answer is no, just dispose of it.

Another trick is to tidy by category instead of location. This way, we can store all items of the same type in the same place. On the other hand, by tidying room by room, we run the risk of creating two separate spots for the same type of items.

There are many other great ways to become a minimalist. Do you want to become one, Spring? Because of one great statement I heard a few days ago, by Naoto Fukasawa, I really want to become a minimalist: “If you ask me what minimalism is really about, I would say that it’s the altering of values – enter the small doors of minimalism and come out on the other side with big ideas.”