Affresh Blog

March 29, 2012

How I Learned to Love…Like…Tolerate Spring Cleaning!

Colin

I hated cleaning as a kid. Any chore really – you name it, I detested it.

I used to get pretty creative conjuring up ways to get out of my household responsibilities, but there was always one I could never elude…spring cleaning day.

My mother knows any big job goes a lot further and faster when more people are involved. So one day scheduled well in advance, in early spring, she would recruit the whole clan, assign tasks, distribute various cleaning tools, and set us off to every corner of our house. 

As an average, rambunctious youngster, I dreaded the thought of spending all day cooped up inside, vacuuming and scrubbing, and – perhaps worst of all – working alongside my sisters??? But my mom recognized the potential disaster that she’d organized and realized the success of her plan hinged entirely on the cooperation of her children.

There’s probably no greater enemy to productivity than a mutinous 10-year-old.

So, in a highly tactical move, she incentivized the whole day. And it worked.

My sisters and I would clean in shifts of 30 minutes at the top of every hour. After a half-hour on the job and a thorough inspection of our work, my mom would let us loose to do whatever we’d please for the remainder of time. We were like freed prisoners, fleeing to savor every meaningful second. But we’d always return at the top of each hour, without fail. And during that time we’d work dutifully to do our part…while repeatedly checking the clock for our next 30 minutes of leisure.

We’d usually break for the day around 5 p.m., although I don’t remember mom ever really stopping. Then we’d order pizzas, which we’d eat on paper plates to avoid any additional clean up. After dinner, we’d go to Blockbuster Video (remember those?) and make it a family movie night. My parents would let one of us kids select the movie and if my sisters picked something “girly,” I’d usually demand a video game rental as appeasement. All of this however, was based on our cooperation and contributions throughout the day.

It doesn’t take much to incentivize a spring cleaning marathon. My mother let us know how important it was to her that we helped and gave us a few additional perks to guarantee our support. Considering no one ever really looked forward to the day, my mom would make it fun and – I never thought I’d admit this – somewhat enjoyable. It made us all more appreciative of a clean home and respectful for the work that mom did around the house. Plus, it helped lessen my hatred of chores.

Just a little bit.       

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March 27, 2012

How Dirty is Your Refrigerator?

Sarah

Did you know that a dirty refrigerator can actually spoil food more quickly and consume more energy than a clean one?
Here are some tell-tale signs that your refrigerator needs a deep clean:

• Mold – Mold most frequently lives in your refrigerator due to spoiled food, so be sure to check the back of the fridge where leftovers and produce tend to get pushed and left aside. Clean and disinfect with affresh™ Kitchen & appliance cleaner.

• Not enough space – Just how many salad dressings do you really need crammed into that refrigerator door? Before you take a trip to the grocery store, consolidate your condiments to make room for food you actually need. This will also help prevent unpleasant odors from emanating out of your fridge. Speaking of which…

• Unpleasant smell – This one is obvious, but if you smell something rotten when you open your refrigerator, it’s probably time for a good cleaning. For everyday maintenance, be sure to keep Tupperware, aluminum foil and Saran wrap sealed tightly around your food. Particularly potent foods can actually transfer their smell to other foods in the fridge, so try not to keep certain leftovers in the refrigerator for more than three days.

• Freezer burn – The smell of freezer burn can actually transfer into the refrigerator, perpetuating the stench. Be sure to defrost your freezer at least once a year and don’t let visible ice build-up around the sides of your freezer higher than a quarter of an inch. Scrape ice off the walls and clean with affresh™ Kitchen & appliance cleaner.
Following these guidelines will make your next deep refrigerator cleaning much faster and easier. And remember to use affresh™ Kitchen & appliance cleaner for everyday and deep cleaning regiments!

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March 22, 2012

Why World Water Day is Important to Us

Kaitlin

The United Nations has named today, March 22, International World Water Day. This important day is meant to draw attention to the significance of freshwater and advocating for the “sustainable management of freshwater resources.”

Statistics show that each of us drink between 8 to 16 cups of water every day. Most of the water we ‘drink’ is embedded in the food we eat.  With the theme of this year’s World Water Day being ‘Water & Food Security,’ we are reminded that: The world is thirsty because we are hungry.

In today’s environment it is more important than ever that people do their part to help alleviate the world’s water worries. In the United States alone the demand for water is much greater than supply; over the next 3 years, 36 US states are in danger of water shortages

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, there are a few simple steps everyone can take to help alleviate the water scarcity issue:

• Follow a healthier, sustainable diet
• Consume less water-intensive products –  for example producing 2.2.lbs of beef consumes 3,963 gallons of water, while 2.2 lbs of wheat ’drinks up’ 396 gallons
• Limiting the waste of excess food means reducing the water needed to produce our food – more than 30% of the food produced worldwide is never eaten and the water used to produce it is ultimately lost
• Produce more food, of better quality, with less water

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March 16, 2012

How to Make Your College Basketball Party a Slam Dunk

Colin

Basketball fanatics love March and there’s nothing better than having a few friends over to watch a day-full of games – but can your home handle it? We’re still a couple of weeks away from your Spring Cleaning extravaganza and your house has lost some of its sparkle as the winter months drudged along. Fear not! We have some tips to help you mask the mess and throw a killer game-watch party.

Evaluate the situation: Always, always, always begin your cleaning with a plan. It doesn’t have to be a thorough breakdown, but make a quick note of what needs to be done. List the rooms and places in your home that need attention. This will help you get started.

Start where it counts: Figure out which rooms need the most attention and make these a priority. If you have a main TV room where guests will congregate, that’s probably a good place to start. Obviously your kitchen and central bathroom will need some attention, but don’t forget other places your guests will see, like your home’s entrance or a coat closet.

Know your clutter zones: What’s the first thing you notice when you go to someone else’s home? It’s definitely not the spotless stainless steel refrigerator door handles. The most noticeable mess for guests is visible clutter on open surfaces: countertops, tables, shelves, etc. So focus on these clutter hotspots. Old newspapers, magazines, and mail can pile up quick and you may not even notice it – but your guests will! 

Remember your company: Chances are your game-watch party will be pretty informal so there’s no need to stress over every detail. No need to worry about bedrooms or formal areas. Save time by making adjustments that fit the type of party that you’re throwing. 

Enjoy the party: Once the guests have arrived, relax and have fun. Your house won’t remain spotless throughout the party so don’t stress over the little things that will inevitable go wrong. Just enjoy the party and worry about the clean-up later.

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March 15, 2012

Grease Be Gone

Sarah

By now you know that affresh™ Cooktop cleaner is perfect for removing tough grease stains from your stove top, but did you know that different affresh™ cleaners can remove grease from other unexpected places in your kitchen?

Cooking at home can easily splatter grease on your cabinets, light fixtures, appliances, walls and even ceiling fans.

See tips below for removing grease all over your kitchen:

Stove top
• Make sure all controls are turned off and surfaces are cool.
• Remove burned-on food and grease with a sharp blade.
• Shake affresh™ Cooktop cleaner bottle well and apply directly to surface; rub with provided scrubbing pad and wipe clean.
• Safe for all glass, ceramic and porcelain stove tops; repeat at least once a month to prevent grease build-up.

Oven
• Even if you own a self-cleaning oven, manual cleaning can remove grease quickly and easily with the right product. Start by ensuring oven is cool and removing oven racks.
• Use a sharp blade or scour pad to remove burned-on food and carbon.
• Spray affresh™ Kitchen & appliance cleaner directly on insides of oven and wipe clean.

Cupboards
• Cupboards and cabinets can often accumulate grease from cooking and residue from other cleaning products; easily remove by spraying affresh™ Kitchen & appliance cleaner onto the surface or a clean cloth.
• Wipe clean; no rinsing necessary Microwave/Refrigerator/Other appliances.
• Our affresh™ Kitchen & appliance cleaner can also easily remove grease from other kitchen appliances by spraying onto a cloth and wiping clean.
• Remove grease and other residue from stainless steel appliances with affresh™ Stainless steel wipes.

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