How To Clean an Iron

No matter how hard you try to deny it, even those of you who regularly clean your iron sometimes forget to do it – whether it is because you are in a hurry or you have simply forgotten to do it. Or maybe you think that it’s not so important but it actually is. Not doing so may eventually lead to the damage of your iron.

Every woman has seen at least one stain on her iron. Even modern irons with a self-cleaning mechanism sometimes get dark stains on the surface. These stains are most often mill-cake from the surface of the clothes being ironed. Hence, they are the result of ironing itself. The process of gathering these mill-cakes is a tedious one and they cannot happen after one or two ironings. The question that every woman asks herself now, is how to clean unpleasant stains on the iron surface. Of course, there are a lot of ways and abstergents for this type of cleaning that can be found commercially. But what follows are helpful tips on how to clean the iron with stuff which you can find right inside your home.

•For iron stains that have become dry and more difficult to remove, you should first heat the iron to its maximum temperature. After the iron is hot enough use it over a piece of paper. Repeat the procedure until the iron surface gets completely clean.
•If the stains on the iron surface are old – you can remove them with the help of ammonia dissolved in water. Apply it on the iron surface and rub with a clean cloth until the surface is completely clean. After you have removed the stains, wash the iron surface with a cloth, soaked in water.

•Removing the stains with the help of vinegar – the fact that vinegar can serve not only as a salad dressing but as a very effective cleaning means is not very popular. However, it is used for removing persistent stains on metal surfaces. You can use it in the very same way as the ammonia solution. If the vinegar is not enough to completely clean the stains, add some saleratus on a cotton cloth and gently rub the iron surface with it. Be careful not to push the cloth too hard on the surface as you might damage the iron.
•How to clean the iron container – first, mix equal amounts of water and vinegar. Pour the mixture into the container, turn on the steam function and leave it working for about three or four minutes. If there is some of the mixture remaining in the container, pour it into the sink and pour clean water instead. Leave it working on the steam function again for a couple of minutes to make sure the container is completely clean.
•Last but not least, before cleaning the iron in any way, you should carefully read the instruction manual that comes with it, as it gives the best advice on how to work with the iron and how to clean it.

Turn a Kitchen Into a Dining Kitchen

High on many people’s home wish lists is a kitchen diner, but what if you’re not blessed with a spacious kitchen in which to put a large dining table?

No matter how small your kitchen, it’s perfectly possible to add a dining space if you think creatively. Here are some fantastic space-saving solutions to turn your kitchen into a dining kitchen with ease:

Breakfast Bar

The classic breakfast bar is usually easy to install, and the addition of a couple of bar stools can quickly create a usable space to eat. This range of bar stools at ASDA are a fantastic buy on clearance at the moment, helping you to keep the cost of your kitchen conversion as low as possible. They also take up next to no space, slot neatly away under a breakfast bar, are height adjustable and come in several colours including red, green and black.

A simple breakfast bar is usually easy to install. Simply extend your worktop, or take out an existing cupboard to make space for stools to fit underneath. You can even buy stand alone breakfast bars if you don’t want one that is integral to your kitchen.

Cupboard Breakfast Bar

If you can’t afford to lose any cupboard space, you could instead have a slightly wider worktop fitted so that the bar stools can still fit underneath. Whatever the style and colour scheme of your kitchen you’ll find stylish bar stools to suit at ASDA Direct, like the Crescent Bar Stool in blue, pink, purple, silver, red and black.

Bistro Table

A space to eat doesn’t have to be huge. Sometimes a bistro or bar table will suffice, and these small, circular tables make an ideal dining space for one or two in apartments or small homes.

Choose a clear glass topped style to maximise space even more, with small bar stools that will fit neatly underneath.

Drop-Down Table

Where space really is too tight to mention, consider a wall-mounted drop-leaf table. This table folds flat to the wall when not in use, and is ideal for using with foldaway chairs, for a dining space that practically disappears when it’s not needed.

Extendable Table

If you have a small space for a dining table but don’t want to spoil the spacious look of your kitchen, an extendable table is a good choice. This can then be extended when in use, but kept compact the rest of the time.

Those who regularly have guests around for dinner can keep foldaway chairs in the utility room, store cupboard or garage, ready to be brought out when the occasion arises.

If you’re still struggling to see how you can fit a usable dining space in your kitchen, grab some home magazines from the newsagents or library for inspiration. You’ll also find the internet to be an ever-useful resource when hunting for design and space saving ideas – try BBC Homes, Channel 4 Homes and pinterest to get you off to a good start.

 

Cleaning as a Fun Activity

That’s right – you read it correctly. Cleaning might be tiresome and annoying for most of us, but it’s really all about having the right attitude and the motivation throughout the cleaning process. Cleaning can be just as fun and rewarding as any other task – after all it’s done for maintaining one’s home.

If you have a clean home, it’s less stressful to invite guests at the last minute. You have to admit that you sometimes get that urge to invite friends over, but suddenly hold back once you realize that with all the mess around your house- the toilet needs thorough cleaning and there are nasty stains and marks on the windows- it may even take you longer to clean the flat than your friends’ actual visit.

Having a clean home is a true blessing – it makes us confident and proud. It also makes us healthier – whether you believe it or not. Dust and dirt that stay in the house for a long time reduce the air quality and cause breathing problems and illnesses.

How can you turn cleaning into a fun activity and make cleaning less boring? First of all, have a good schedule and follow it religiously every time you clean. This way, even if you feel a lack of motivation, you’ll know it must be done.

Second, find a way to motivate yourself to start cleaning. This is one of the best tricks – stop viewing cleaning as a house chore and see it as an opportunity to make your home better.

Third, clean on the go and learn how to be neater in general. This rule never grows old, because it’s the best rule of thumb. If you manage to clean spills and tidy up whenever you see the problem, your home will be much cleaner, neater and healthier.

Remember that starting with your least favourite task or area to clean at home is the best way to approach this. You have the most motivation in the beginning, so before you know it you will be finished with cleaning the toilet or vacuuming the floors and the carpets. Play some of your favourite upbeat music while you clean – the rhythm will surely help you stay energetic and positive. Music can make a big difference during a house cleanup.

If you want to finish with cleaning quickly, involve your children as well. Distribute tasks among them and try to reward them afterwards. Don’t make cleaning look like torture – point out its benefits and show them that you greatly appreciate their help and involvement. Cleaning the house doesn’t have to be done all at once. If you clean on the go and tidy up regularly, you wouldn’t need to spend the entire weekend doing everything – cleaning, washing up, cooking and tidying up.

Gradually try to teach yourself that cleaning is not a task that takes up that much time or effort – a little bit goes a long way in maintaining a clean and healthy house. If you make it a habit to clean every time you have some free time and when you are not tired, it will no longer be a chore, but something you can actually look forward to.

Top Ten Targets for Burglars

Whether you own your own home or you are a tenant in a rented property, home insurance will be a necessary and sensible investment. In a day and age when burglary accounts for around 15-percent of all reported crime, house contents insurance is an effective form of damage limitation, should the worst happen. Of course, prevention is as good as the cure in this case, and police officials recommend that individuals make themselves aware of what thieves see as easy targets when it comes to choosing their victims. Being informed will help you ensure your home is well protected from people who just may be casing it.

Small Items

While you may think your 50-inch plasma TV is an attractive target to burglars, it is actually small, easy to hide items that thieves are keen to get their hands on. Therefore, it is important that you keep cash, jewellery, mobile phones and games consoles completely out of sight.

Tools

Tools, such as power drills, jigsaws and electronic screwdrivers have long been a firm favourite among house burglars. This is because these items are always in high demand and therefore easy for the thief to sell.

Hiding Places

If your home is covered from view by bushes and trees, or the exterior is badly lit, it is sure to attract a burglar’s interest. This is because thieves can be confident of getting in and out of your home without being seen by other people. Adding simple outdoor lighting doesn’t have to be expensive and it works as an excellent burglar deterrent.

Keys

Leaving a spare key hidden in gravel or under a flower pot may help you out if you get locked out but it can also help a thief enter your home with no effort required. Many household insurance policies will be void if it turns out that the burglars let themselves in with a badly-hidden spare key. It is therefore, much more sensible to leave a spare key with a neighbour or friend.

Easy Access

When a burglar cases a potential home to enter, one of the main things the individual is looking for is ease of access. The burglar will note if you make mistakes, such as leaving the bottom floor window open when you’re out or leaving a ladder propped up against your property, and will be more than happy to take the opportunity to get inside your home easily.

Electricals

Most types of electrical equipment are popular with burglars these days, as they are easy to sell and usually keep a good price. Consider adding security marks to items such as your television, music system and computer. It is even possible to purchase built-in security devices for some items, which are designed to render the item unusable if it is stolen.

Discreet Holidays

When you go on a holiday, even if it is just for a short break somewhere close to home, make sure you arrange for a neighbour or friend to come around your house to collect the mail. You should also cancel any newspaper and milk deliveries for the duration of your holiday. Piles of post and newspapers, along with a build-up of milk bottles will instantly make your home a target to a potential burglar.

Firearms

If you have a license to own a firearm or any other type of dangerous weapon, ensure you keep it in a locked, tamper-proof case or safe. Weapons, especially firearms, are highly sought after on the black market and therefore an attractive target for thieves.

Vulnerability

Unfortunately, certain members of society are more attractive targets to burglars than others. If you are an elderly individual living alone or a single female ensure you take the proper precautions to keep yourself and your home safe. It is a sad fact of life that burglars are more likely to target the home of someone they class as vulnerable.

Patio Doors

Patio doors are a dream come true for most burglars, as they offer potential easy access to a person’s home. If you have patio doors, avoid making your home a target by ensuring they stay locked at all times – even when you are at home. Don’t leave the keys in the door either, burglars can easily break the glass pane nearest to the lock, retrieve the keys and let themselves in quickly.

 

The Refrigerator – A Must-Clean Kitchen Essential

The refrigerator is a very important piece of equipment in the kitchen. As food is essential for our daily sustenance, this is where we store them to keep them fresh.  Usually though, we are not that careful when we put things back in it, like we are when we take food out of it. We are in a mad rush and we just haphazardly throw leftover food inside, leaving them uncovered and putting them in the wrong place. This exposes food to the risk of potential spoilage.

Leaving old food in the refrigerator is a very bad habit. We need to find the time to keep updating the contents of the fridge, tossing out anything that can no longer be eaten. Otherwise very unpleasant smells may come from inside the next time you open your fridge. Not to mention the bacteria that can be growing inside can make the rest of the food very toxic.

When the old food in your fridge are starting to go real bad, you’ll have to do some very essential cleaning at Brent. Here, you will need a few things to help you out. Some insulated bags or a refrigerating box will be very good for storing the food in while you are cleaning the fridge. Rags, water, baking soda, a bucket and a trashcan will also be good to have.

Start by emptying the fridge and organizing the food in the bags or inside a spare fridge if you have one, because you don’t want to spoil the food while you are cleaning. Once they’ve all been taken out, you can separate the stuff which are still good for consumption from the stuff that have already expired.  You can throw them directly in the trash can. So when you start putting things back in the refrigerator you will only have fresh food left.

Next you can dismantle all removable parts, like shelves and drawers. This will leave you with enough empty space that will let you clean easy and fast Guildford.

Wash the shelves and the drawers in the tub or the sink. They should be washed only with the usual dishwashing detergent and hot water. Be sure to dry them thoroughly after that, so they look clean with no water marks.

For the interior of the fridge you have to prepare a mixture of a quarter of a cup of baking soda and four cups of water. Baking soda is known to make miracles with cleaning, and it is something that can easily be found in every home. In case you want to add a nice fragrance to the fridge, put some soap in the mixture, but be sure to rinse well afterwards, to get rid of any residue.  Use a cloth dipped in the mixture to clean all inside parts.

Around the doors, you can often find traces of mildew. You can get rid of them by using the same mixture you used for the other parts of the fridge, only that you have to scrub harder this time.

Once you are sure you have completely dried every part of the refrigerator, you can start putting the shelves and drawers back in place and sort the food inside.

A Plan for Cleaning the Bathroom

The bathroom is perhaps the most visited place in the home, not only by the family, but by guests. It should be regularly cleaned, to invite with sparkling cleanliness and pleasant aromas.

The first step that people should take when they prepare to clean the bathroom is to empty the waste basket and get the Crystal palace cleaning equipment and materials ready for the cleaning, which is best done by drawing up a list and ticking each item off. Because nowadays people clean with disposable cloths, one of the most important tools is a plastic sack where the used cloths will be tossed.

Bleach is a staple for cleaning, and its powerful germ killing effect is especially appropriate for bathroom cleaning. The toilet bowl should be flushed, and then bleach can be poured, brushed around the bowl and especially under the rim. Then the bleach should be left to do its germ killing job.

Another group of bathroom elements that need cleaning comprises the taps, the mirrors, and the sink. In addition to the array of cleaning agents available, there are also simple tried and tested home prepared mixtures: a popular one contains equal parts of water white vinegar). Spraying the mixture on the faucets, the mirrors, etc. and then wiping with a dry cloth does miracles in way of removing soap drips and toothpaste spatters, as well as other stains, and restoring the shine.

The water taps are places especially favoured by limescale. To restore their cleanliness and shine, applying some mild bathroom cleaner is sufficient. Care should be taken when taps have a brass or gold finish. Removing limescale can be achieved promptly, by rubbing the taps with the inside of half a lemon, and then the taps should be rinsed. It is worth studying the manufacturer’s advice on cleaning the specific taps.

The next step is the wiping of the toilet tank, as well as the seat. Some wipes sprayed with the water and vinegar mixture are powerful cleaners. After the bleach left to clean inside the bowl is flushed, the toilet section is ready.

Replacing the towels is a necessary stage of bathroom cleaning. The clean small hand towels as well as the large towels left on the bar would also benefit from spraying with linen spray, or with some light body spray.

The final area to be subjected to cleaning is the bathroom floor. The rugs and bath mats should be shaken well and rinsed to make them clean. The floor should we wiped with a dampened cloth, and special attention should be paid to the corners, because they are the areas where most of the dust and loose hairs tend to gather.

Cleaning the bathroom in the above mentioned order ensures the efficient reaching of the final goal – a sparkling clean bathroom with each area properly cleaned and attended to. By sticking to the plan for cleaning, people can also spare time, which is especially important for those with cluttered daily routines and when guests are expected. One of the worst nightmares for people hosting guests is the messy bathroom, so don’t wait until the final moment to get your bathroom cleaned.

Bio: Melinda Evans is a professional freelance writer and dedicated housewife. She loves writing about any daily activities part of most women’ lives, such as home organizing and keeping clean house NW10, cooking and creating something out of nothing. Her story of following her passions in home making and writing about it will inspire you.

Easy Kitchen Cleaning Tips

When a kid left a pair of drum sticks lying on the floor in the library I work at, I had a stark realization:  I wanted to become a part time drummer!  But before I can start making that dream a reality, I have to tackle one very important task at hand.  Although it’s hardly any fun compared to waving to screaming fans at a rock concert, I have to go and clean my kitchen counter at home.

The kitchen is probably the most used and abused part of the house.  This is where we put groceries and other food items away.  On the kitchen counter, we spill meat juices and whatnot.  Sooner or later, grime goes camping in the nooks and crannies of our kitchen.  This is where topnotch cleaning products come in.

Even the best quality Electrolux home products parts need a thorough scrubbing every now and then.  For your precious kitchen appliances, only cleaning products meant for these will do the job.  They’re tough on germs and bacteria yet gentle on your appliances.  Choose cleaning products which effectively break down dirt and grime without compromising the stainless steel surface of your kitchenware.  Remember to use microfiber cloths as well.

I know that with enough practice, I’m going to be a pretty good drummer.  Before I hit the drums though, I must start dealing with the kitchen…

Great Ways To Enhance Your Backyard With Outdoor Furniture

Many people invest a lot of time and money arranging and redesigning their interiors. This is because people want a relaxing space they can spend time in. Your backyard is an extension of your home. It deserves as much care as any other part of your house. Take time to renovate your outdoor space and you will be able to create your own little paradise. You can enhance your backyard by using beautiful outdoor furniture. This space can be just the spot for you and your family to spend cool afternoons in. Learn about how you can improve your outdoor space.

Consider having a deck built
Photobucket
If you have a lot of space in your backyard, you can dissect the area by getting a deck built. An area like this is perfect for those who like having guests. You can host summer parties and get a grill going. Your deck can have a small patio set or a chaise lounge. This will make your backyard more inviting and comfortable. Once you make a couple of adjustments, you will be able to spend more time outdoors and get that fresh air you need.

Add some color
Photobucket
Earth tones and very neutral colors are great for contemporary indoor spaces. However, when it comes to your backyard, bright and bold colors do the trick. This is because earth tones will blend with the surroundings and lack personality. You should also avoid black or dark furniture that might absorb heat. In the sunlight, these types of furniture will become very hot and uncomfortable to sit in. If colors that are too bright aren’t your cup of tea, try pastel colors or furniture with beautiful prints. Don’t be afraid to try new things when it comes to colors.

Lounge around the pool
Photobucket
If you have a pool or a hot tub in your backyard, you should consider purchasing lounge chairs. These are great for those who love spending time under the sun. You can sit back, close your eyes and imagine that you are in a gorgeous beach somewhere in a tropical paradise. Pool lounge chairs come in a variety of materials. Hard plastic furniture might be affordable, but these are very uncomfortable. When looking for the perfect lounge chairs, shop around first in order for you to find the set that is perfect for your outdoor space.

Play around with lighting
Photobucket
You can add some warmth in your backyard just by adding nice lighting. You can set up some nice still yellow Christmas lights to your trees. The holiday season is not the only time you can hang up some nice lights. This adds a nice cozy feel to any backyard. It’s also a great way to create a safer environment in your outdoor space during the night. Get some Chinese lanterns and line them up around your patio furniture. Candles and subtle torches give a softer and more romantic look. You’ll find that dinging Al Fresco will be more inviting with the right lighting.

Comfort is key
Photobucket
When you are looking to enhance your outdoor living space, consider your comfort. Add a nice shade to the area where your furniture will be placed. If the sun is shining too brightly or there is a bit of rain, a nice canvas shade goes a long way. You should also remember to choose patio furniture that will last. Wicker furniture or high quality wood pieces are perfect for outdoor spaces. You can also install a fire pit if you want to enjoy cold winter nights toasting marshmallows with your family. This can add a whole new level of comfort to your outdoor living space.

No matter how big or small your backyard is, it is possible to create an outdoor living space your family will love. All you have to do is think about the activities you would like to do in your backyard. By making a couple of adjustments to your yard, you can create a comfortable and beautiful space where your whole family can spend time together. Remember that your outdoor space should be maintained just like any other room in the house. Keep it clean to avoid bugs and debris. Get some fresh air in the comfort of your own home just by investing in your backyard.

Tips on Bathroom Vanity Lighting

Women these days have it far much better than their Neanderthal counterparts.  We get to enjoy primping ourselves in front of the mirror inside the comfort of our bathrooms.   Here, we put on makeup, comb our crowning glory and basically do everything which helps us set the tone for how we’ll look for the rest of the day.  But it doesn’t stop there.  Our prettifying experience can be made much more pleasurable by something as unassuming as bathroom lighting.

Using the right kind of lighting for our bathroom vanity helps us see things the way we should.  For instance, if we put just a single light over the mirror, this often results in shadows on the face and not enough light on the neck and lower part of your face.  To fix this, simply add a light fixture on each side of the mirror.  You can get a few pieces of Candice Olson lighting to do the job.

Be sure that there is no light directed to the mirror.  Take away any objects which may distract.  When you look into your mirror, you shouldn’t be able to see any other bright reflections.

Proper lighting does so much to the bathroom.  Choose wisely, and you’ll soon see things in a better light.

 

How to Care For Your Outdoor Furniture

Spending too much time indoors does cramp your style, and sometimes you just feel the aching urge to stay outdoors and get a little sun on your cheeks.  As the fresh air beckons you to sip a margarita as you read your favorite magazine out on the patio, don’t forget to pay special attention to your outdoor wood furniture.  Here are some tips on how to care for them:

Sunlight can damage your precious outdoor wood furniture, so be sure to keep them away from where the sunlight may directly hit them.  You can put the furniture under the shade of a tree, or beneath a large patio umbrella.

If you live in a wet or humid area, use waterproof covers to keep your furniture dry.  When water gets into the wood, the wood grains break down and cracks begin to show.  But if you live in a particularly dry place, you must apply a product on your wooden furniture which will help it retain moisture.   Natural oil like teak oil will condition your wooden furniture on the inside and let it live in dry weather for a longer time.

Try and wash your outdoor furniture with a wood cleaner twice or thrice a year.  Dirt, dust and pollen can take their toll on your tables and chairs.  When dirt and grime get stuck in the finish, the wood can break down

Occasionally tighten the screws on your furniture pieces.  Frequent use tends to loosen hardware.

Remember to do a regular upkeep of your wood patio furniture.  When things get desperate, you can always call the experts at furniture restoration to do the job.  When these folks refinish or restore outdoor furniture, they mean business.  Your precious wood patio furniture deserves no less.