Wednesday, 15 April 2009

3 Basic Method of Tidying

There seems to be 3 basic steps we can take to realise a tidy house:
1 Allocate a set address for everything you own
2 Put back things to their home immediately after using them
3 Never move room to room without picking up something to put away

1 Allocate a set address for everything you own
We need to give each item a logical and practical address to suit us. For example, you may keep your nailcutter in your bathroom. But if you have a habit of grooming yourself while relaxing in the living room, then you must keep it somewhere in the living room. Otherwise, the nail cutters will just get left around. Or worse, being put away in some temporary space and you'll end up wasting time searching for it. It sounds simple, but sometimes we aren't conscious of our own habits! We need to analyse our behaiviour to decide what goes where.

2 Put back things to their home immediately after using them
If you find it difficult to stick to this, then you might reconsider the item's address. It might be kept too far away from the place you usually use it or you need to take too many steps to reach and return it!

3 Never move room to room without picking up something to put away
On this, I am still in training. I want it to be like second nature. Ultimately, I need to do this without even thinking about it! But for now, I am enjoying it as a game.

I guess these 3 methods are well known. I am trying but still my house isn't always tidy. I think that is because I am lazy. I know! But seriously, I want to forgive myself for not being a dedicated homemaker, at the same time I want to look like one by utilising clever tricks and ideas.

One reason that I cannot completely comply with the 3 methods is that maybe I still have too many items. I need to remove clutter and should try reducing the number of items I use by making one tool to do more than one job. I need to reconsider the addresses of those items if they tend to travel around. Maybe I should even choose and find a home for an item before aquireing it! I also should have some space for overflow or new items.

I would like to keep everything streamlined and hide it out of sight, but this is simply not practical. So I have an everyday family mode and a guest mode where I temporarily hide ugly items.

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Friday, 3 April 2009

Under the sink rubbish bin used as storage

Our kitchen has a built-in bin, but I don't use it to dispose kitchen waste. I find it is too much to first open the cupboard door, then to lift the lid and finally to place the rubbish. It requires 3 actions. Kitchen waste is often watery and tends to leave spillages around the area. I would rather dispose of it outside of the cupboard in a free standing bin, so that I can wash the whole thing and wipe the surrounding surfaces without getting down on my knees.

This is the bin in question.

I removed the blue bucket and wiped the bin inside out. I found a part of it comes off! It is always easier to clean if things can be dissembled.

I keep non messy dry kitchen cleaning supplies here. For examples, shopping bags waiting to be re-used, sponges, blue clothes, pan scourers and a stock of bin liners.

I also use a shoe box and other empty boxes on top of this bin to keep the following things:
bin bags, surface wiping clothes, delicate wash bags and small used plastic bags.

I use the small plastic bags to collect things like vegetable skin and used kitchen towels. At the end of cooking and cleaning session, I tie it and bin it.

The contents of the shoe box is light, so I can leave it there when I lift the lid of built-in bin. Less action, Less waste of energy!

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Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Removing Brown-tapes and Stickers Residue

I use white spirit to clean off the residue of brown-tapes and stickers. Here, I removed a brown-tape residue on the laminated wood surface under the sink . I think it is safe to use white spirit on surfaces like laminated wood, stainless steel and tiles, but you should test the effect somewhere which is not conspicuous first, just to be sure.

Here is a bottle of white spirit.

This is the brown-tape residue.

Halfway there.

Gone! I didn't really need to exert much energy.

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