Monday, March 21, 2016

Spring Cleaning when it still feels like Winter


Happy Spring everyone!  When I hear spring, I also think Spring Cleaning.  It has been beautiful in Maine over the past several weeks, and I thought for sure that as soon as the Vernal Equinox came, we would be full into spring; after all we didn’t have much of a winter.

But, of course, as Mother Nature often intends (for us New Englanders at least!) we are in the middle of another snow storm; the first one of any significance since February 5th.


While all of my southern friends will be throwing open their windows and letting in new spring air, we will be turning the heat back up.

Even though it still feels like winter in Maine, that doesn’t mean that we can’t begin to do some spring cleaning.  Every year I feel the same way, I want to finish the spring cleaning before the weather is nice outside, because as soon as we are able to, we want to be outside.


 These first few months of the year I have spent de-cluttering.  It is amazing the amount of “stuff” we have been able to get rid of.  The kids have been involved and overall it has gone quite well.  But, now that *most* of the de-cluttering is done (I have decided it will never be completely done while we still have kids at home), it is time to move onto other areas of cleaning in the home.

The first stop will be my kitchen.  It is the place where I spend most of my time, but also doesn’t get deep cleaned as often as it should.  Yes, surface cleaning is done multiple times a day, but going through the cupboards and getting rid of old spices, Tupperware that no longer has a cover, or dishes that are cracked or unused, that doesn’t happen nearly enough.  The spring is the perfect time, and the fact that it is still cold out works in my favor.  I can take most of the food out of the fridge and set it in a cooler outside with no concern of leaving things out of the fridge for too long.

Where is the first place to start?

I like to start with my cabinets.  We do not have a separate pantry closet, so dry goods and spices are also in my cabinets.  I try to take everything out, one cabinet at a time, and then discard, clean the cabinet and then put everything back in.


I know that some people like to take EVERYTHING out at once, but with my kids, I know that isn’t a good idea.  If I take everything out, I may only get 5 minutes past removing everything when I have to tend to something my kids are doing, or nurse the baby, or help someone with school, so one cabinet at a time makes more sense for me.  It obviously is a slower process that way, but it is what works for me.

Once I have all the upper cabinets done, I work on the lower cabinets, followed by our armoire (which holds a lot of our food), I then move to the fridge and freezer, and I end with the counters.  Why do I end with the counters?  Because I tend to store stuff on them while I am working on the cleaning process, and will have to clean them after I finish the rest of the kitchen anyways, so I might as well save them for last!


Having a clean and organized kitchen is something I always strive for, but between my older two starting to prepare food for themselves, and my husband helping me get things cleaned up, it never seems to be organized quite the way that I expect.  When I take this time in the spring to work on deep cleaning, means that a summer full of food preservation is possible.  Making room for all the summer and fall goodies is definitely important to me!


How do I keep the kids occupied while I am working on my kitchen spring cleaning?  I get them to help of course!  Giving small children a washcloth and a small bucket of water with white vinegar gives them the opportunity to help me clean without much worry.  They will wash the floors and baseboards and lower cabinet doors with the washcloths and a water/vinegar mixture.  It is safe for them to use, and the worst that happens is that I need to throw down some extra towels due to a little more water being used.  It is a great way to keep them occupied and feel like they are part of the job at hand.

Is it still winter where you are?  Are you planning on spring cleaning?  Which room do you like to work on first?

31 comments:

  1. Oy vey - it is snowing here right now. It was spring, but now it's gone and my motivation went right along with it.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Welcome Spring! The weather here in the UK isn't that bad but I oh so wish it was nicer. When I spring clean I start with my kitchen as well then I do the rest of the rooms. I however always get the kids involved, they're part of the household so why not?

    ReplyDelete
  3. Love the idea of the towels and vinegar and making it a family affair! Many hands!

    ReplyDelete
  4. We are expecting snow on Thursday here in WI. I just can't do my spring cleaning without birds chirping and windows open!

    ReplyDelete
  5. It is getting springlike in Wisconsin, but the only thing that makes me want to clean is: company! Nonetheless, I try to clean the kitchen out every year. You are so creative in involving your kids.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Even though it the second day of spring, it is actually windy and cold here in FL. Surprising I know. I don't typically do spring cleaning, but I will go through things every few months or when the organization isn't working for me anymore.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I can't relate to the winter weather BUT I love to spring clean, all year long! lol! I love to clean out my cabinets - it makes me feel so much lighter!

    ReplyDelete
  8. We don't really have seasons here in Hawaii, it's around 70 all year round, BUT! I'm from Pennsylvania originally so I get the urge to purge every spring!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Luckily it's been warm in Georgia and we pressure washed everything in sight this past weekend.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I love getting my kiddos to help with the spring cleaning too! It is just starting to warm up here, I am excited for cleaning!

    ReplyDelete
  11. I have the Spring fever right now. Definitely in the cleaning mood!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Where I live we don't have any real winter weather. I do need to do some spring cleaning though.

    ReplyDelete
  13. We have cold weather again but no snow. Thankfully. I didn't spring clean this year. Maybe a summer clean to catch up!

    ReplyDelete
  14. We like to spring clean during the late winter months so once the sun pops out we can be outside playing!

    ReplyDelete
  15. I love spring cleaning. I especially love throwing out all the rubbish that's been sitting in the corner, looking at me, for the last couple of monts.

    ReplyDelete
  16. It's always great to get the kids to help with cleaning. It's something they will need to know anyway for the future.

    ReplyDelete
  17. It never was "winter" here in Texas this year. I love the vinegar and washcloth idea.

    ReplyDelete
  18. I am the same. I want to spend time enjoying the nice weather and not holed up inside cleaning.

    ReplyDelete
  19. It's so hard for me to be motivated when I'm cold and it's bleak outside. I'm actually more apt to clean when it's warmer outside. I like to get up earlier, get the work done, and have the rest of the sun shiny day to go out and enjoy it.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I'm pretty lucky that we've had a mild winter so it is actually spring here! I agree with involving the kids in the cleaning...it has made my job easier and they see first hand an insider's view of running a household.

    ReplyDelete
  21. I live in Florida (so thankful to have left the crazy winters of New Jersey behind last year!) but yes, spring cleaning is important. I'm looking forward to our new town's community garage sale next month - a good opportunity to purge some of the clutter!

    ReplyDelete
  22. i have been cleaning my home like a mad woman. i curently am working on a major purge as it was time - everything out one room a a time - it feels so good ;)

    ReplyDelete
  23. Oh yes, I also have to do my spring cleaning and I need to start with the refrigerator and my wardrobe. Thank you for the reminder.

    ReplyDelete
  24. I have a few cupboards in the kitchen that need sorting…I hate doing it….even though sometimes I discover items that I didn't know I had. My Mom uses those racks in her shelves with much success…I wish I had more room to use them.

    ReplyDelete
  25. So true! Sorting and organizing is so important to feel sorted and together! Great tips and hacks for any reader!

    ReplyDelete
  26. I have bee busy purging my home as well. I will be tackling my kitchen next month! So much to do.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Spring is here. I like to start in the kitchen and bathroom. But, this year I need to start in the winter-neglected Laundry room.

    ReplyDelete
  28. We just had an ice storm yesterday! Yes, you're right, best to start spring cleaning now so that we can go out when it gets warmer out. Will get to it... soon..... ; )

    ReplyDelete
  29. Here in Florida we don't have that problem, but great post! I just helped my mema spring clean her pantry.

    ReplyDelete
  30. THanks Heather,I will start with my room, primarily changing the arrangement of the room,
    need your backup.

    ReplyDelete
  31. It's so true that as soon as the weather is even mild, I'm outdoors! I started my spring clean in the laundry room, but only because I needed the flourescent light in there to grow seedlings!

    ReplyDelete

I love to hear from my readers and try to respond to all comments either here or through e-mail. Thank you for taking the time to comment!