Day 4 Task: Deep clean.
I have a confession: This task was not too scary, because we have a house cleaner once a week who takes care of a lot of deep cleaning type tasks, so our space doesn't get too bad. The floors are clean, the baseboards dusted and the counters and backsplash polished on the regular. There are, however, a few scary spots, which I tackled with glee. (Hey, this is starting to get fun!)
The worst place in my kitchen is under the sink. We've had spills there, the shelf liner is ripped, the dog has tipped the garbage can a few times and there are quite a few redundant cleaning products in there. I've been afraid to put a compost container under the sink, lest it get lost in the shuffle and I find it months later, after it has grown a new head.
I cleaned, consolidated and re-lined the cabinet. IT WAS GROSS. Now, it is not gross.
We have lived here for eight years. For eight years, my father — a realtor who knows his way around a house — has warned me that our garbage can was too tall and would lead people to be sloppy about throwing things away. He told me I would be stuck with a sticky, gross cabinet. Normally a pretty laid back guy, he really couldn't let this one go. He was right. The picture below is after cleaning. That was the best I could do without repainting. Dad, I wish I had listened.
I got a new, lower can, and I hope it will help. It sure does look shiny!
Then it was time to look up.
I clean above the cabinets pretty regularly, dusting and wiping down with a damp sponge when necessary. Every time, I ask myself why the cabinets don't reach the ceiling. I'm guessing because they would have had to be custom, but I sure would love the extra storage space. I have stopped myself from putting things up there because, in my experience, they get really, really grimy and I will never want to touch them.
Below my stove, I opened the drawer to my jumbled pots and pans, removing them gingerly, fearful of what I might find there. It was pretty gross. Ooh! Look! A pad of Post-Its! With grease! Yes, we were eating out of the pans stored in this drawer. And — if you came over for dinner — you were, too. Sorry 'bout that.
Luckily, it was easy to clean, shiny in no time at all.
I replaced the pots and pans, positioning them in a way that will make the ones I use most often easier to grab. A few of them were grimy and went into the dishwasher.
I also cleaned the oven (which actually cleans itself, so...) and checked all the screws on the cabinets, wiping the front of them as I went. I'll clean the microwave later today. Promise! The bookshelves were too intimidating, and I decided to save them for later in the week, because I need to purge some cookbooks and that may take some time nad major emotion.
The best thing I did was clean the blown glass witch ball hanging over my sink. As I wiped away the layer of dust, I remembered how pretty it was, especially when the sun shines through the northeast facing window, usually around lunchtime, when I'm often alone and at peace in my kitchen. Unconsciously, I had avoided looking in that direction. Below the ball, I keep a few souvenirs of fun times we've spent together as a family, as well as the kids' smaller pottery projects and a few pictures. It's amazing what you see when you wipe away the dust.
Do you love to deep clean or hate it? For me it's like exercise. I sure don't want to start, but mid-way through, I start to feel good about it and I love the way I feel when it's over!
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(Images: Anne Postic)