Keeping the Kitchen Organised and Clean

Keeping the Kitchen Organised and Clean

Why should you take the time to learn how to organize your kitchen?

The kitchen is the heart of the home. It is where people tend to gather during parties, it is where you prepare meals for your family and friends and it can be a room you enjoy being in if you follow some simple tips to help you keep it organized.

Identify and Fix Hot Spots
Hot spots are areas in your home that seem to attract clutter and disorganization and a kitchen is full of them!

How to Organize Kitchen Counters
Kitchen counters are prime suspects for clutter. They get filled with mail and other papers, and overcrowded with small appliances and decorative accessories.

There are some simple things you can do to de-clutter your kitchen counters:
Place a basket near your entry door, or mount an organizer on the wall to hold the daily mail.
Reserve counter space only for appliances that are used every day. Appliances that are only used occasionally should be stored inside a cabinet or nearby closet.
Limit the number of decorative items you place on your counters. Your kitchen will look more beautiful if it is well organized. Bring any unnecessary decorative items to Clutter Central.

How to Organize Kitchen Cabinets
Kitchen cabinets can become cluttered, making it impossible to find what you need when you need it. Learn how to organize your kitchen cabinets and simplify your life.

Here’s how:
First, remove everything from all of your cabinets. Spread the items out on the counters and a table, if necessary.
If you see anything that you simply never use bring it to Clutter Central. Since your cabinets are now empty, this would be a great time to give them a thorough cleaning.

Next, separate the items you use frequently from the items that you do not use very often.
The Items you don’t use as often should be placed in high cupboards or cupboards further away.

Last, separate the frequently used items into groups: pots and pans, mixing bowls, dinnerware, serving pieces, etc.
Put these items away in the most logical location depending upon their use:
Place pots and pans in a cabinet near the oven.
Place dinnerware in a cabinet near the table or entrance to the dining room.
You get the idea.

Remember to put heavier items in lower cabinets or on the lowest shelf of upper cabinets. The key is to make the most efficient use of your kitchen storage.
You can also take care in arranging cabinets that you use to store food items and organize your pantry.

How to Organize Kitchen Drawers
Having drawers in your kitchen can be a real luxury. Your use of drawers will depend on how many you have.
You will need a drawer for cutlery, which can easily be kept tidy using a cutlery organizer.

If you have a drawer near your food preparation area, I would suggest purchasing an in-drawer knife organizer. It will eliminate a knife block from your counter top and it will protect your knife blades – and your fingers when you reach for a knife inside the drawer.

Drawers can also be the perfect spot to store dish towels, food storage bags, plastic wraps and foils, serving utensils and any other small kitchen accessory you need to store.

Keep your kitchen drawers organized by following these guidelines:
Group similar items together.

Do not overstuff your drawers or you will never be able to find anything in them.
Store items in drawers located nearest to where the items will be used. Place knifes in a drawer near the food preparation area, place cutlery in a drawer near the table, etc.

Avoid the junk drawer!
Many people have a tendency to create a junk drawer for all of those little things that tend to gather in the kitchen. It starts off as a good idea, but a junk drawer can quickly turn into a disorganized disaster.
Do not rob yourself of valuable drawer storage by giving in to the junk drawer!
Assess the items you have in your junk drawer. Determine the best home for these items and put them there. If some items do not have an existing home, create one for them. Be persistent. The reward will be an organized kitchen.

Make it Efficient
Now that you have learned how to organize your kitchen, here are some tips you may want to consider to keep it running smoothly:

If you do a lot of cooking invest in a large chopping block. They are indispensable for making meal preparation more efficient. You can chop every ingredient in the recipe and place them in piles on the board where they will be ready and waiting for you when you need them.
Be sure to have a plastic or silicone cutting mat on hand to use when chopping meats. These mats can be placed in the dishwasher to sanitize them after use and you don’t have to worry about germs gathering on your wood board.
Consider placing all of your cooking utensils in a jar next to the oven. No more digging around in a drawer to find that spatula you are looking for.Everything is visible and within easy reach when you are cooking.

Reserve the cabinets around the stove for cooking-related items like measuring cups, spices, oils and seasonings. This way, if you need something while you are cooking you never have to walk away from the stove.

If you bake a lot, create a baking center in your kitchen. Keep all of your baking necessities together and place them as close to your preparation surface as possible.

Simple Maintenance

As you go through the steps above to get your kitchen into tip top shape, take a few extra minutes to wipe out the insides of your cabinets and drawers while they are empty. Give the sink and the counters a good scrubbing and thoroughly wash the floor.

Now that you have completed a clean sweep and figured out how to organize your kitchen let’s talk about how you can keep it looking that way.
Keep your sink and counters clean daily. Place dirty dishes into the dishwasher or wash them immediately to keep them out of the sink.
Keep your counters cleared by returning items to their rightful homes and not letting them pile up in your kitchen.

While cleaning up after dinner, wipe your sink and counters with a disinfecting cleanser every night.
Keep your stove top clean by wiping it after each use.
At least once per week remove the burners and burner covers and give them a thorough cleaning.
A good way to clean your burners is to spray them thoroughly with oven cleaner, place them in a plastic bag and tie it tightly.
Leave them over night and rinse them off in the morning.
At least once per month clean your oven, or run the self-cleaning cycle
At least once per week, wipe down the outsides of all cabinets and drawers.
At least once per month wipe down the tops of your cabinets.
Keep the floor swept as often as necessary to keep it free from debris.
Wash the floor at least once per week.

Stressed? frustrated? don’t know where to start? live in North East England? give Your Maids a call, they are an eco-friendly cleaning service, all their products are safe for  use around children and pets. 

Keeping The Bedroom Organised and Tidy

Keeping The Bedroom Organised and Tidy

When it comes to household organization, I always recommend that you organize your bedroom first. Let me tell you why.
Most people neglect the private spaces in their homes, thinking that since nobody will ever see those spaces, it doesn’t really matter whether or not they are neat and organized.

This type of thinking could not be more wrong. It does matter…to you!

Your master bedroom should be your peaceful haven. It should be the place you can go at the end of a long day to unwind, relax and rejuvenate.

Also, your bedroom is the first thing you see when you wake up every morning. It sets the tone for the rest of your day. If you open your eyes to clutter, you will start your day feeling overwhelmed. But if you open your eyes to organization just think of the motivation you will feel and how that can carry you through the rest of your day!

4 Piles Rule

Firstly, engage the 4 piles rule- and make spaces for the boxes.

(Keep, donate, bin & unsure)

There will also need to be a space for item’s to be re-interrogated back into the room.

What’s in there?

Take a good look at the flat surfaces in the room I.e. anything that will act as a dumping ground for things that haven’t made it to their rightful resting place. Look at bedside tables, dressing tables, Drawers and Chairs.

Starting with one surface at a time, take all the items off and move them away from the area.

Put back ONLY  what needs and makes practical sense to be there.

The remaining items should fit into the 4 piles.

Miscellaneous drawers, knick-knacks, jewellery, socks, underwear, make up, products etc. These are best tackled by taking your time, removing the drawer and sitting calmly and quietly sorting through each item.

Bedside Tables
What’s living in your bedside Tables: Do you use or even need anything or everything on them? If not, Clear them away.

Do not overload your space:

limit it to things you need- an alarm clock, a reading book, reading glasses, tissues, and maybe a phone.

Under Beds

Clear everything out from under beds that are not properly stored in storage boxes, bags or baskets.

If you do need to use this space invest in storage boxes or purpose made under bed storage boxes & bags. This doesn’t have to be expensive!.

Dressing Table
Tidy up your dressing table and only keep out products and cosmetics that you use on a regular basis. All other items should be stored out of sight or in drawers.

Clear surfaces
Having Surfaces full of nick- nak’s in your bedroom, just creates a dusting and cleaning nightmare!

As well as making your room look cluttered pack away at least 80 % of the knick-knacks and keep out only 20 % of really special items.

No desks
If you have a desk in your bedroom, arrange to move it to another room if possible. Bedrooms are not the place for work  of any kind or PC’s.If you cant find a place to move it straight away then give yourself a deadline to find a more suitable place for it to be.

Storage / Space Saving tips
Use your wall space to erect some shelving to display decorative items photos or books .Use deeper shelves for folded clothes. For narrow shelves store books, CD’s and other smaller items such as photos, or carefully chosen decorative items.

Where possible use the tops of wardrobes for out of season clothes, linen or seasonal duvets.
Fold bed linen sets together: Duvet, pillow cases, bottom sheet and valance. Use one of the pillow cases to store the set in, this makes it easier out and saves time having to search for each item.

Tops of dressers are useful for keeping items out that are used on a daily basis, such as perfumes, hair styling products, creams and lotions, hand mirrors etc, but be careful not to allow your surfaces to become cluttered!.

Plastic Drawer dividers are great for separating the contents of your drawers for items such as : Socks, Underwear, Cosmetics & Products, Or if cost is an issue  you can use old boxes or shoe boxes to act as dividers in your drawers.

Store all other products & lotions & potions in wicker baskets, they look great and are handy for keeping everything together.

Pin Boards can also be really useful for utiltising wall space for other storage needs to, Such as, Photos, memorabilia, Cards, Calendars, Reminders, business cards, etc.

Keep items small or medium sized otherwise your board will be swamped.

Invest in a magazine rack that goes on the wall, this will stop it from overflowing on the floor.

Throw out read magazines once a week!

Hooks: Use hooks near your mirror to hand your hairdryer straighter etc on. Saves space and no Tackling wires every morning

Clean the floor! One Rule NOT to be broken! If it doesn’t rightfully belong there, then do not put it down.

Put away!: DO not fold clothes in the bedroom- they seldom get put away!!!

No clothes on the floor, OR over the chairs, banisters or anywhere else where they can be abandoned indefinitely! They either belong in the laundry or in the wardrobe. NO EXCUSES

Gorgeous Bed
Make your bed look fabulous, Luxurious and something that anyone would want to sink into! Buy good quality linen for maximum comfort and a great look. Using a Duvet that is one size bigger than the bed will make it look really inviting and plush. it’s the central feature of your bedroom so make it stand out and bask in its glory!

If you have lots of jewellery
Buy a jewellery to display jewellery and help you see exactly what you have each day. But a cheaper option is a mug tree, they do the same job and look as good!Use a cork board or pin board to hang your items on, if you want it to blend with your bedroom, then cover it with some fabric!

Use Towel Rails for Scarves & Belts!

Simple Maintenance
Now that we have talked about how to organize your room, let’s talk about how to keep it that way. Here are some simple things that you can do to keep your room looking its best.

Take the time to make your bed every morning.

Open your window blinds every morning and let the sun shine in!

Sunshine will make your nice, clean room feel warm and cosy.

You will grow to love that feeling and you will be more likely to keep your room clean.

Be sure to wash your bed sheets at least once per week.

If you have a laundry hamper in your bedroom, make sure you keep it under control.

Try to get into the habit of doing at least one load of laundry every day..Vacuum and dust thoroughly at least once each week.

Hire a cleaner once a week for a thorough clean of the entire house.

If you find that you gradually start to slip and your master bedroom begins to look cluttered again start again!

Now that you know how to organize a bedroom, I hope that you will discover the satisfaction of reclaiming your own peaceful haven.



Stressed? frustrated? don’t know where to start? live in North East England? give Your Maids a call, they are an eco-friendly cleaning service, all their products are safe for  use around children and pets. 

Cleaning With Kids! ‘ Many Hands Make Light Work’

Cleaning With Kids! ‘ Many Hands Make Light Work’

Kids are finally back at school and the countdown to Christmas has began! Excited? I know I am!

And one of the best ways to start the preparations  is with a little cleaning that gets the whole family involved. There’s just something so satisfying about opening all the windows, tearing your house apart, and putting it back together again, all while enjoying each other’s company.

To help you in your quest, here are a few ideas compiled from various sources about spring cleaning. The suggestions include some pointers about attitude and approach, and which tasks make the most sense for youngsters. I hope you find them helpful!

Think teamwork 
It’s downright lonely to be sentenced to clean a bathroom on your own, but paired with a parent, even a five-year-old can work safely and happily. While Dad wields the bowl cleaner and the tile brush, his helper can scrub the sink, polish the fixtures, empty the rubbish, and carry towels and rugs to the laundry room. Working as a team involves kids in the cleaning process, helps them learn cleaning skills, and most important, models both the attitude and the job standard you’re trying to teach.

(or) Think competition 

Turn spring cleaning into a competition. Divide your family members into teams and assign tasks that take about the same time to complete. Award a prize to the team that gets their chores done first. Make sure you inspect the work to ensure fairness.

Take your voice out of the process 
Children have an innate ability to “tune out” parents, when the subject is chores. What parent wants to spend a Saturday nagging, threatening and shouting, “You get back here and finish the vacuuming!”?

Instead, post a list of the day’s jobs, or write them out on index cards. Split the jobs up between the teams, or let each team choose one until the work is done.

Make time fly with media motivators

Playing upbeat music or an exciting audiobook keeps spirits high—and dust cloths moving. For maximum motivation, let each helper choose his or her tunes throughout the day.

Keep cleaning sessions short 
A five or ten minute cleanup session, accompanied by upbeat music, is something the whole family can get into. You’ll be done in no time, and it’s painless enough that kids won’t mind doing another round every so often.

Assign animal attributes 
Make a joke about each person’s cleaning style, likening it to the behavior of a particular animal: jackrabbit (fastest), turtle (slow and steady), squirrel (stores things away), bat (fast and fearless), and slug (goes to sleep when chores are mentioned).

Delegate “big jobs” to teens
Once adolescence hits, working with a parent loses it’s appeal. Solution? Delegate big—but safe—jobs to teen children. Whether they clean and organise the garage, shampoo the living room carpet, or restore order to a jumbled linen closet, they’ll take pride in their work IF you truly let them own the job. Ignore all whinging and moaning, and praise their solutions to the skies. In spite of their complaints, they won’t let you down.

Reward hard work 
Spring cleaning is nobody’s idea of a good time, so plan for a reward for your workers. When the chores are done, schedule a family treat. Whether it’s pizza for lunch or an evening film-fest, you’ll get better results—and sweeten attitudes—if there’s a payoff at the end of the day.


Ideas about how to find tasks for all ages

Preschoolers enjoy helping with cleanup, and can easily dust lampshades, books and tabletops, line up CDs, and sweep with a little broom. Armed with the proper (nontoxic) cleaning solution, soft rags, and gloves—kid-sized rubber garden gloves work well,

Primary -age children are experts at polishing mirrors, brass knobs, door knockers, outdoor house numbers, and chrome car bumpers and trim.

Teens can wipe car interiors clean. Indoors, give them fine steel wool to shine your stainless-steel sinks and faucets, for instant results!

Ask your children to try on last summer’s clothing so you can see whether or not the items no longer fit them. If they don’t, have your children place the clothes in bags to take to a donation drop-off center. Also, have your kids select toys and books they no longer use so you can de-clutter your house and donate these as well.

Give your child a broom, and ask him to sweep off the front steps, patio or deck. If he’s able to do a thorough job, have him sweep the rooms inside the house as well.

Send your children on a mission to pick up all the sticks in your  garden.

Fill a bucket with warm water and a mild soap and allow your children to clean off their bicycles, which are likely to be dirty from being  used so much over the summer holidays.

Hand your child a dust cloth and instruct him to dust all furniture surfaces. Remove any breakable items before he starts, and tell him not to try and dust surfaces he cannot reach.

Spray and wash! Your teenager, a garden hose, and a bottle of window cleaner designed to be attached to the hose can make your outdoor windows sparkle in no time — even those on the second floor. Who doesn’t enjoy messing around with water?

Have Fun!


Stressed? frustrated? don’t know where to start? live in North East England? give Your Maids a call, they are an eco-friendly cleaning service, all their products are safe for  use around children and pets.