Tag Archives: cleaning

The Job Jar

16 Jan

In this very busy world we live in it is very difficult to do 2 very important things …

ONE … keep the house clean … it is a large project that either NEVER gets done because it is just too daunting … or people do it all for 14 hours on ONE day and because it takes so much energy it doesn’t get done again for a long time OR it falls on just one person … either Mom or Dad and that is not fair …

… AND TWO … keeping the family together as one unit for some good family time …

Here is a good way to keep the house clean AND have some team family time as well … The Job Jar!!

This is a way to keep the house clean by doing some of the housework in bite sized pieces 4 or 5 days a week and keeping the family together in a fun way … (YES … it can be FUN!!)

First … you will need to find 2 somewhat LARGE and specific Jars to be your JOB JARS… we found these at Wal-Mart a few weeks ago during the Christmas clearance sale for only $0.74 each:

snowman jar

You need to somehow label the jars to keep the rooms separated – the rooms that you need to clean from the rooms that were recently cleaned. You can print out labels, or hand write them, and attach them to your jars:

Job Jar Labels

Then … you will need to list all the areas of your house and write them on small papers like “names in the hat”… since we are just a family of three, most rooms in our house are listed separately on pieces of paper.  The only rooms that are combined are “Laundry Room/Half Bath” since these rooms are each too small to house 3 people for any length of time… Larger families may want to have more room combinations so the family can split up appropriately.

areas for job jar

… Kitchen … Kids Bedroom … First Floor Bathroom … Master Bedroom … Closet … Family Room … Basement … Study … Garage … etc.

Print these out and cut them up into individual pieces of paper:


Put all these in your FIRST JOB JAR …


The plan … each night someone in the family pulls out one of the papers … i.e. Family Room … then the WHOLE FAMILY gets together to Clean THAT area of the house … THE CATCH IS … for just 20 MINUTES … (so NO MORE ROLLING OF EYES like in the past when the “when are we going to be done” comments start flying) … any family can be together on a project for 20 minutes a day for 4 – 5 days a week … BUT the cleaning MUST end at 20 minutes … put on a TIMER if you have to but must keep to that timing … then that paper goes into JOB JAR # 2 … the next day we pull again … i.e. Kitchen … and so on …


This way it is a manageable time to blast through an area for a bit … doesn’t have to be perfect because in about 2 weeks that area will be hit again when it is pulled from the OTHER Jar … and SO ON and SO FORTH

Once JOB JAR # 1 is empty … the house is in pretty good shape AND we then move onto JOB JAR # 2 … by the end of JOB JAR # 2 … the house is clean … the Family has had some good and goofy stories (it is amazing how spending 20 minutes a day together this way can solidify the Family) … then we rotate from JAR #1 to JAR # 2 …

Do a LITTLE EACH DAY and over time … The house stays in good shape AND the FAMILY Stays in GOOD SHAPE!!


This family friendly blog is provided by www.BaptismalGownsPlus.com.  We specialize in high quality, affordable Baptismal gowns, rompers & suits, First Communion dresses, girls headpieces and boy’s suits.  In addition, we have a full line of Confirmation robes for churches to choose from with sizes to fit any size Confirmation candidate.

How to Clean With Vinegar

12 Sep

Let’s face it folks, vinegar can be used more than to just color Easter eggs or de-scale your Keurig machine (if you own one you know what I mean – or at least you should know about itto extend the life of your machine).  It’s so tempting to run out and buy all of these ‘specialty’ cleaners that are out there on the market for every little thing in your house – but in the end, you’ve spent a lot of money, have a lot of ‘toxic’ bottles in your cleaning arsenal – and your house is no cleaner than if you just used good old fashioned vinegar.

Here are some uses for vinegar that you may, or may not have, thought of….


Wash your floors – just add about a ½ cup of white vinegar per gallon of warm water and mop your floors.  The vinegar will cut through any grease and grime and is safe for most floors.

 clean floors


Clean your stainless steel shower heads #1 – To remove the mineral buildup that you can get on your shower heads (or kitchen faucet) you can put white vinegar in a plastic bag and ‘tie’ it on to your shower head for a few hours.  WORD OF CAUTION – In some articles I’ve read, folks have commented that the vinegar can almost ‘eat through’ the finish on showerheads that are actually coated plastic shower heads.  Also, I would be careful if you have a very delicate finish on your shower heads or a fancy ‘bronze’ finish.

 clean shower head


Clean your stainless steel shower heads #2 – If you don’t want to try method #1 above because you don’t want to ‘submerge’ your fixture in vinegar, you can take an old tooth brush, dip it in vinegar and ‘scrub’ the area that has the mineral build-up,.  This method will take more elbow grease because you will almost have to wait for the vinegar to break through the buildup, but maybe add this to your weekly cleaning routine so you stay ahead of the game.

 Clean faucet


Clean the microwave – Vinegar can soften any tough food particles AND remove any odors from your microwave.  All you need to do is get a little microwave safe bowl and put ½ white vinegar and ½ hot water in the bowl.  Microwave on high for 5 minutes.  When it’s done, all you need to do is wipe down the microwave with paper towels or a soft cloth.

 clean microwave


Clean your refrigerator – You can use a mixture of ½ water and ½ white vinegar to wipe down the shelves and walls of your refrigerator.  It’s non-abrasive to the finish and freshens up the fridge while removing any food residues.

 clean refrigerator


Clean the grout on your tile floor – Pour undiluted white vinegar on the group and let sit for a few minutes.  Scrub the grout clean by using an old toothbrush.  In researching this blog post, I decided to try this.  As you can see from the pictures, I am pretty embarrassed at how dirty the grout has become on my kitchen floor.  I’ve washed the floor with a mop using vinegar before, but pouring vinegar directly on the grout, letting it sit for only 5 minutes and then scrubbing with an old toothbrush resulted in a very embarrassing middle picture.  I have a LOT of work to do since I have a pretty big area of tile to cover since the same floor spans a very large part of the first floor of my home….

 clean grout


“Yucky” spray – When my son was small he thought it was funny to say “stupid”.  Since he wasn’t allowed to say it, it suddenly became his favorite thing to say…  My sister told me that when her boys were younger, she used ‘yucky’ spray to spray the bad words out of their mouth.  We had nothing to lose, so we decided to try it – and what do you know, IT WORKED!!!  When we first used it, my son was quite upset because he didn’t realize what was coming, but he was not hurt and it certainly got the message across.  The funny thing was, he was sitting on my lap a little while after we used it, and suddenly I started smelling a salad – then I realized, it was my son – he actually smelled like a salad.

 “Yucky” Spray Recipe:

  • Small spray bottle
  • White Vinegar
  • Water       

Combine equal parts white vinegar and water in spray bottle.  Put one spray in mouth of child that has some yucky words in their mouth to get rid of the words that shouldn’t be in their mouth.

I know, I know, Super Nanny would be horrified, but sometimes a parent has to do what a parent has to do… you need to decide if this is worth trying in your home.  The only problem was, he started liking the taste of the “yucky” spray… it was no longer as effective as it once was, but the word “stupid” was long gone from his vocabulary.

 yucky spray


Clean coffee maker – Over time, mineral deposits can build up and clog up your coffee maker.  Fill the water reservoir with white vinegar and run it through the coffee maker with a ‘brew cycle’.  Let the coffee maker sit for 4 hours.  Put clean water in the reservoir and run clean water through the brew cycle.  If you still sense a ‘vinegar’ scent, then run through the clean water cycle a few more times.  If you have a Keurig machine, be sure to follow the instructions in your users manual.



Boiling eggs without cracking – When you are making hard boiled eggs, you can reduce the risk of the shells cracking in the hot water by adding two tablespoons of white vinegar to the water. The eggs won’t crack, and the shells will peel off easier when you’re ready to eat them.


 boiling eggs

Can you share any other tips or tricks that you have used vinegar for?  Please share with us by commenting on this post.


Anne-Marie Dunn is the owner of www.BaptismalGownsPlus.com.  Come visit us to see our complete line of Baptismal and First Communion clothing and accessories for both boys and girls.