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Spring is just around the corner, which means so is Spring Cleaning. There’s a lot of things to think about and do during your spring clean, and if you tried to do it all at once, you’ll likely get burned out, frustrated and not do it. I’ve also found that I will slack off if I don’t have someone motivating me or a REASON to keep pushing forward, and sorry to say but—a clean space isn’t always going to cut it. Therefore, I’ve made this into a 7 week challenge. Each week STILL has plenty of things to do even though it’s broken down into almost 2 months of deep cleaning. Me writing this will challenge me to actually do all the things that I am writing about and can maybe learn a few tips and tricks from you along the way. So without further ado, let’s get started.
Home Safety Check
Week one is going to focus on your safety checklist. There are lots of things that aren’t just a matter of “wanting a clean house.” You actually have some safety things that you need to be considering and checking on. Even if you’re in an apartment or rental, I don’t care if it’s your landlord’s responsibility, you want to make sure that you and your family are safe! I am including pictures from our house, and I would say don’t judge us, but eh *shrugs,* there would be no need for spring cleaning if everyone’s house was perfect!
Clean your air vents
You can simply vacuum visible build up if that’s possible. For some of mine, we won’t be able to do that. We are going to have to either take them off and go spray them with the hose, or in the tub with a sprayer or just use a wet rag and clean it off. But for sure go room to room and do this for each of them! Have you ever used a cheese cloth for getting off dust and dirt? I wouldn’t use it daily or anything, but we’re for sure going to need to use it on some of these vents with all the animal hairs. ugh!
Clean or Replace Furnace Filters
You’re really supposed to do this monthly. Our old system had monthly filters we had to take out and throw away every month in our furnace, but we had to replace the whole HVAC system right before Adalind was born. Now, it has a cleanable one we’re supposed to clean monthly. In our apartments, there were filters that went in the wall and ceiling, now we just have the wall. You’ll need to change the wall and ceiling filters just like the furnace filter if that’s how your system is set up. Like I said, it’s supposed to be monthly, but you for sure need to do it now if you haven’t before! This is also a good time to schedule to have your furnace/ac inspected and/or cleaned!
Check and change smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors batteries, fire extinguisher level, and first aid kit levels/medicine expiration
These are pretty self explanatory. Replace what is needs replaced!
Here are some links to a few of the replacements we will be getting:
This isn’t just about getting the fresh air. You also need to make sure that your windows are able to open up, especially if you need to climb out of them in events such as a fire.
Create a family emergency plan and double check it
You want to make sure that your family has communicated a plan in case of emergencies. Where will you go to if there is a fire? How will you get out? Do you have a ladder or way to get down from second story? What if there is a bigger community wide emergency, where will you meet? Are all of your important documents in one place for you to quickly grab if you needed to? There are great resources to help you talk through (such as this one, )and plan this together as a family, but it’s important that you have these conversations and think through these things.
Replace burned out light bulbs
While you’re doing that, I would also make sure that you have flashlights with new batteries and candles in the event the power were to go out. You can use this as an excuse to go out and buy your favorite scented candles, or you can buy flameless candles.
Check for any apparent structural damage to the inside or outside of the house
Do you see any cracks in the foundation of the house, driveway or side walk? Are any of the steps loose on the patio? Need to tighten up a handrail? Are any of the outside vents clogged with debris? Is water draining away from your house from your gutters? Do you notice any water spots in the ceiling? Check for these types of structural issues and address them ASAP!
Check attic, crawl space, garage and/or basement
Obviously you want to clean these areas, but it’s important to also check them out for animals that could have potentially made a home, or check for things like standing water. You don’t want any mold hanging out in these areas either and not know it.
Check for and clear any insect nests or cobwebs
inside or outside the house
Notice little wasp combs starting up on your patio? Lots of cobwebs? Clear those bad boys out! Once you’ve done that, got ahead and spray to keep the critters out!! Use this nifty tool (purple thing) to clear them off outside.
Clean your gutters out
You don’t want any flooding to happen because of full gutters!
Check all your outlets where you have things plugged in
I really do mean walk around and look at all of them. We STILL have not put outlet covers back on in our bedroom from when we painted. OMG. So for example that’s step one for us. But you’ll want to look and see what’s going on at each outlet. Do you need to baby proof it? Add some plug protectors on unused plugs? What do you have plugged in and what does it look like? Can some of your smaller appliances go ahead and be unplugged?
You need to check and make sure that cords are not looking cracked, worn, or frayed. No cords running across doorways…please! If you’ve got things plugged into a power strip, is it surge protected? It’s not feeling warm to the touch, right? If it is, you need get a new one and you need to consider plugging less things into it. You also shouldn’t have something falling out of the outlet or loosely tilted while it’s being plugged in *cough* not that I have a picture example of that happening at our house. *FACEPALM*
Yes, this is a big giant topic. It could have it’s own post. In fact, I might do that one day. But for now, I’m just going to set it as a reminder with a few ideas. Need to anchor TVs or big furniture? Need to get scary harmful chemicals up and out of reach? Need to block off stairs? We’re trying as much as possible to make a Montessori/yes space for Adalind. So getting down on her level and taking a look around for dangers is huge. This may look different next spring, or even this fall! But get down there and see what they’re seeing and put in some safety steps based off what you see. You might be surprised!
Below is a link to a printable safety checklist made for your convenience to use while you’re doing week 1 of the spring cleaning challenge! Be sure to share how it went! I was surprised at how many safety issues I came across while preparing for this and we are working hard this week to correct them!! Check in next week, Monday March 12th for Week 2 of the Spring Cleaning Challenge– The Kitchen!!