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November 05, 2011

Get Your Home Ready for the Holidays: 28 Day Challenge – Days 10 + 11

28 days-simplify101

Day 10:  Wash the Windows

This is one job that I tend to procrastinate on, but it’s also one of the most satisfying chores to me. I love when the windows are clean! It really does give the house instant sparkle, and it lets more light shine in. (As we talked about in the light fixtures post a few days ago, light feels very important when the days are growing darker and darker!) So if I love clean windows so much, why do I put off cleaning them?


I think this might stem from watching my mom spend an entire day washing windows, scrubbing screens, and switching out the screens and storm windows each fall and spring. That was a big, messy job that would take her most of a day, and I never seem to have an entire day I want to devote to this cause!



But as Aby shows us in the workshops, breaking big jobs into bite-sizes can help us get past that feeling of overwhelm! Let’s start by cleaning the windows in the public areas, especially around the front door. Dust the window frame and ledge, vacuum out the sill, and use your favorite glass cleaner on the windows. Aby likes Mrs. Meyer’s recipe for homemade glass cleaner. I haven’t tried that yet. I do usually make my own glass cleaner with either club soda or with vinegar and water, but I may splurge on some Mrs. Meyer’s Lavender Glass Cleaner for added motivation on this one! What do you use to clean your windows?



Day 11:  Dust Clocks, Smoke Detectors and Carbon Monoxide Detectors


Most of North America is gaining an hour this weekend as Daylight Saving Time ends. As we set our clocks back (at 2 a.m on November 6th, to be precise), we are also conditioned to change the batteries in our smoke detectors. If we already have the ladder out and are taking this stuff down, let’s just dust it while we’re there. Clean the clocks and smoke detectors. Check and dust your carbon monoxide detectors, too. I actually have some friends who were rudely awaked by a false alarm due to spider webs in their smoke detectors, which it turns out is fairly common. Who knew? Let’s clean these out in hopes the same won’t happen to us.


I am not sure if I’ll use my extra hour to catch up on some of these 28-day challenges or spend it relaxing with my family. How about you?


Happy Cleaning!

  Jens signature black


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I'm in the vinegar and water camp. I use it because basically, I'm too lazy to move the toothbrushes from under the bathroom mirror when I clean it. A number of years ago, I was using a commercial window cleaner that contained ammonia and when I sprayed the mirror, a mist of cleaner drifted down onto everything below, including our toothbrushes... well, that can't be good.

As well, I have invested in several microfibre rags and I find that they clean just about anything faster and more thoroughly.

Pamela Foster

Would you please share Mrs. Meyers recipe for homemade glass cleaner? It has to be better than the purchased cleaners that just don't seem to get the film off of the windows.

Oh, has anyone used newspaper to clean windows? Sounds counter-intuitive, I know, but I know some who swear by it. Also, how about coffee filters?


I can vouch for the newspaper trick although if you are not careful, it can smudge the window frames. As well, I usually wear rubber gloves so that my hands don't get black with the ink, but it does get the windows clean.

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