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Window coverings such as faux wood blinds or drapes that pick up dust and oils from cooking are an area of the kitchen that is often neglected. So clean those regularly! 

     

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Spring Cleaning Your Kitchen

Spring, Summer or Fall! 

A clean kitchen makes for yummy meals as it inspires you cook. I can think clearly when the space around me is spotless. It's like a clean canvas for me to splash my messy paints (spices) and create dishes that warm the soul! 

 

Here are a few tips that will help you clean your kitchen...

Some advantages.... Deep Down Spring Cleaning is a great way to target harmful bacteria that can lurk on kitchen surfaces, in your refrigerator and believe it or not even in your kitchen cabinets. A clean and dry kitchen helps fight bacteria and protect you and your family from food borne illness. Here are a few tips to get you started. 

In order to SPRING CLEAN your kitchen, you will need two days. Sometimes I take a week...Split your cleaning into areas that you feel you can do in one day and then do the rest another or the next day. 

First : You need to do is to bring your kitchen to an  general or everyday state of clean before you begin your spring cleaning. 

Second : Get organized - making sure you have the right cleaners for each job and the right tools for each job. Below are listed some of the things you might need to get started.

Third : Get a few CARDBOARD BOXES and label them as you think necessary to make clean up easy. For example

  1. Put in the basement
  2. Garage Sale
  3. Goodwill
  4. Give away
  5. Throw....a garbage bag will do for this. 

Sturdy black plastic garbage bags not only hold lots of broken and discarded items, they also prevent you from second-guessing your own decisions to discard by retrieving items from the trash.  Out of sight is out of mind!

Get serious about clutter. Get rid of all the unwanted and extra items. To successfully de-clutter the kitchen, harden your heart before you begin....because you will have to start throwing away all that you thought you needed. 

Get Armed With the Right Tools of the Trade

A good all-purpose cleaner, lots of trash bags, paper towels, rags, broom and mop, window cleaner, and anything else you can think of. Paper towels are one of the best tools of the trade as the dust, dirt and grime collected can be thrown away forever. Don't mess with rags as you do not want to clean the dirty rags again. Look for sales for Paper towels and buy them in bulk. 

  • Paper Towels 
  • Dishwashing Liquid
  • Chorine Bleach
  • Hardwood Floor Cleaner
  • Vinyl Floor Cleaner
  • Trash Bags
  • Broom
  • Mop

Here is what to tackle in the kitchen :

  1. Kitchen Sink
  2. Cabinet or Space Under the Sink
  3. Refrigerator
  4. Microwave
  5. Kitchen Cabinets
  6. The Junk Drawer
  7. Appliances
  8. Counter Tops
  9. Floors and Ceilings
  10. Window coverings
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Kitchen Sink

  • Check for repairs needed : Check the grout around your tile if you have tile. If so, do you have caulking on hand ? Is your sink functioning properly? Do you need a new sink nozzle? Should the faucet be replaced? Will you need to replace any water filters?
  • Clean your kitchen sink drain and disposal by pouring a solution of 1 tablespoon of chlorine bleach in 1 quart of water down the drain. Food particles get trapped in the drain and disposal, creating the perfect environment for bacterial growth. 
  • To keep your drains unclogged from grease, pour a cup of salt water and a cup of soda into the drain followed by a pan of boiling water. The grease will usually dissolve immediately and open the drain.
  • Clean the rest of the kitchen sink with a bleach solution.

Cabinet or Space Under the Sink

Consider what you have under there. If you have a toddler, should you really store cleaners there? Maybe you should get cabinet locks? 

  • Clean out and throw away old cleaners. 
  • Re-label stuff. 
  • This is a great time to put new "Pull out drawers". 
  • Also line the bottom with new liners. 

Refrigerator

  • Start at the top.  Remove everything from the top refrigerator shelf. Work your way from top to bottom  
  • Open everything, and when it doubt, toss it out! 
  • Clean your refrigerator thoroughly to get rid of spills, mold, mildew, and bacteria using a diluted chlorinated solution and warm soapy water. Again paper towels work best, as the cleaned up mess can be thrown away. 
  •  Don't forget the gooey residue puddles under the drawers! 
  • Manufacturers recommend against using chlorine bleach because it can damage seals, gaskets and linings. 
  • Clean your refrigerator weekly to kill germs that could contaminate foods. 
  • An open box of baking soda will absorb odors for at least a month or two.

Microwave 

  • Avoid unnecessary spatters by covering pots and dishes with the covers or paper towels when a looser cover is desired. 
  • Use a plate or paper towel directly on oven floor.
  • Wipe up spills at once. Wash regularly with mild
    detergent and water and rinse and wipe dry with paper towel or clean cloth. Especially clean around edge of door and door opening, to prevent soil buildup which would prevent door closing tightly.
  • If spots seem dried on, boil water in a glass cup with a teaspoon of lemon juice for a few minutes; the steam should loosen soil. Leave in oven 5 minutes. Then wipe dry. This will freshen the inside of the microwave so that you don't have any lingering food smells.
  • If odors still remain, clean the interior with a solution of 1 tablespoon baking soda to 1 cup warm water, wipe insides of the microwave rinse and dry. 
  • Never use abrasive pads or powders on oven.   

Kitchen Cabinets

  • Start with your kitchen pantry or where you store your canned goods. Take everything out and evaluate it. Is it past it's expiration date? Throw it away!
  • Something that you don't use or don't know where it came from? Donate it. There are a lot of places that would welcome canned food donations.
  • When the cabinet is empty, wipe off all the shelves. Do you need new shelf paper? If so, now is the time to do it. As you put things back, try to organize them in whatever way makes the most sense to you.
  • Storage boxes without lids need to be thrown away.
  • Throw away the unwanted fast-food plastic cups.....which you thought you might need. Keep a few good ones for when you have little ones visiting.
  • Put old pots and pans in your "donate" pile. Throw away those that are just old and not worth saving.

The Junk Drawer

  • Dump out the whole drawer on the floor. 
  • Clean with cleaner and paper towels/rags. 
  • Line your Junk Drawer with a compartmentalized insert to make it easier to separate your items.
  • Now's the time to go through the contents. Throw out anything that is just plain trash. 
  • Use a rubber band to hold your batteries together or put them in a small basket. 
Make good use of those card board boxes to separate the unwanted items.

Appliances

Oven

  • If you have a self- cleaning oven, set it to clean over night. If it's not self-cleaning , spray oven cleaner.
  • Change drip pans with new ones if the old ones are too dirty to clean. Line them with aluminum and change this every 2 weeks.
  • Spray with window cleaner as it helps get the grease spots out. 
  • Use a bleach based cleaner like "Soft Scrub" to get out stubborn stains and spots. Do not use scouring pads as they will leave marks on your appliance. Instead of using commercial waxes, shine with rubbing alcohol.
  • You can wax large appliances with car wax to make them shine and to remove small scratches.
Dishwasher
  • During regular washing, add a few tablespoons of vinegar to the dishwater. The vinegar will cut the grease and leave your dishes sparkling.
  • To clean your dishwasher : Run your dishwasher once on the hot cycle without any pots or dishes, run through the entire cycle with only a cup of white vinegar to remove all soap film.

Counter Tops

  • Always clean surfaces thoroughly with hot, soapy water. Sanitize your kitchen countertops with diluted chlorine bleach or a disinfectant kitchen cleaner. 
  • Use 1 teaspoon bleach to one quart of water. Be sure to dry with clean paper towels after each cleaning. 
  • Clorox or Lysol quick wipes are handy for swift counter and surface cleaning and disinfecting.

Floors and Ceilings 

  • Prior to scrubbing the floor, use a clean dust mop to sweep. Dust mops should be vacuumed after two or three uses.
  • Spray with the floor cleaner that suits your floor type. OR Clean with detergent and warm water solution. Rinse with a cloth or sponge dampened in clean water. Using a dry cloth or paper towel to wipe the surface dry prevents streaking.

Window Coverings

  • Window coverings such as faux wood blinds or drapes that pick up dust and oils from cooking are an area of the kitchen that is often neglected. So clean them regularly. 

Kitchen Towels

Disinfect dishcloths often. Launder dishcloths frequently, using the hot water cycle of the washing machine. Then, be sure to dry them in the dryer. Dishcloths, sponges, pot scrubbers and other moist cleaning items harbor bacteria and promote bacterial growth. Also, consider using paper towels to clean up kitchen surfaces. When done, throw away the towel.

Happy cleaning! And yes Happy creating thereafter! 



 

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