Lately, I've been neglecting my house. What with starting to volunteer at the CS two days per week and then doing work on the garden beds, the house got very little attention.
I've carried on doing the daily and weekly necessary things such as washing up, emptying the dishwasher, washing, ironing and putting away clothes, etc., but not much else.
This week, inspired by the new series Obsessive, Compulsive Country House Cleaners on Channel 4 on Tuesday night, I thought I'd get back to getting my house in order. We've also got visitors coming from New Zealand in a few weeks, so I thought I'd better make a start, as their arrival will come around all too soon.
I've done an extra shift at the CS this week, because the manager was going away and needed some extra help to get everything done before she went, so this left only Thursday afternoon to get anything done at home, as I go to a class at the gym in the morning, so as soon as I'd had some lunch I got started.
After watching a YouTube video of someone cleaning their kitchen, I was inspired to start with a thorough clean of the oven, which was in a pretty bad state. I did clean it with a chemical cleaner when I did the kitchen deep clean earlier in the year, but to be honest it didn't really get rid of a lot of the baked on food on the oven bottom and this time I wanted to tackle it using natural products, as the smell of the chemical ones last time was horrible and put me off.
This was the oven before, pretty disgusting really. (Not a great picture I'm afraid!)
I did as I'd seen in the video and filled a roasting tray with baking soda, water and vinegar and a squirt of lemon juice, put the oven on high and left it for an hour to try to loosen the grime. I also put the same natural ingredients directly onto the oven bottom.
In the intervening time, I took all the parts off the stove top and cleaned them, filters included, and then I set to scrubbing one of the oven's wire shelves with a brillo pad. I know this isn't exactly natural, but as near as I could get for this job.
Once the oven was switched off, I scrubbed the other wire tray and the oven bottom as best I could. Several brillo pads and a lot of elbow grease later, I'd done what I could to bring the oven up to scratch. I was pretty pleased with the results though.
It's not perfect, but is much, much better and I'm going to try to keep on top of it more in the future, so it doesn't get quite so bad.
Next job for the afternoon, was hoovering and dusting the bedroom. I'd spied quite a few large dust bunnies lurking this morning and they needed to be banished and the surfaces dusted.
Once I got going, I decided to expand the hoovering to cover all of the upstairs rooms and the stairs, as they hadn't been done for a few weeks. It's amazing what a difference just doing a few jobs made.
It felt good to get back to spending some time looking after my home and I'll no doubt be doing a lot more cleaning of it over the next couple of weeks, to get it ship shape and ready to receive our visitors. I'll keep you posted.