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Cleaning After Kids- Removing Crayon Scribbles

January 24, 2013 by admin

crayon scribbles

Kids. They change your life, they change your priorities and they can turn your home upside down in 5 minutes flat. As parents we are constantly facing new challenges, not the least of which are the mind-boggling cleaning tasks created by our little angels. Gum in the carpet? Crayon graffiti? Stickers on… everything?? This post is the last in a three part series for all my puzzled parents.

Crayon on Painted Walls

If your little Michelangelo created a waxy, technicolor fresco in the dining room you might try…

  • Toothpaste. Nothing fancy, no gels! Only paste will do. Just rub the marks with the paste then wipe it clean with a damp rag.
  • Hairspray. Just spray it on and wipe it off! This works good on pen and even permenent marker too!
  • A “magic” eraser. You can get them cheap at any art supplies store so stock up!

Remember to test your stain busting method for removing crayon scribbles on an inconspicuous part of the wall before you try and treat the whole stain.

 

Cleaning After Kids: Removing Gum from the Carpet!

January 24, 2013 by admin

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In part two of our kid’s messes series we will deal with a very sticky predicament: removing gum from the carpet. All corny puns aside, a tutti-frutti wad of sugary chewing gum is a cleaning nightmare. The trick is to first address the stickiness and then remove the blob without damaging your carpet.

First: Freeze it

Take a plastic bag with some ice and hold it against the gum. Check your progress and when the gum is completely frozen solid you are ready for step 2.

Then: Get a spoon.

Use a metal spoon to chip away at the frozen gum, removing the chipped away pieces as you go. If it starts to get sticky again bring back the ice. Careful not to pull or tear the carpet fibers, they can be delicate!

Last: Treat the spot.

It’s important to treat the area with a mild carpet shampoo after you have removed the gum to zap any remaining sugar and stickiness. If you don’t the spot will be a dirt magnet! A little shampoo mixed with warm water should do the job, just rub it gently into the affected carpet then rinse with clean water and blot dry with a towel.

Cleaning After Kids: How to Remove a Sticker

January 24, 2013 by admin

alphabet blocks

This is our first post in our “Children’s Messes” series for all you puzzled parents!

Kids think everything looks better with stickers on it… to any grown-up’s dismay. If your child has sticker-fied your walls, appliances or furniture we have some handy tips to cope with stickermania.

When you try to remove a sticker you might be left looking at a white or gray blotch of gummy residue with some paper still stuck to it. Not cute. Here are 5 things you can try to remove the goo. As always, test your chosen methods on an inconspicuos spot before you go ahead with it.

– A hair dryer. Aim a hot hairdryer at the sticker spot for  or 40 seconds and the goo should soften up and come right off. Still got some tacky residue? Finish up with some soapy water! This is a fairly gentle method though be careful with heat sensitive surfaces.

-Eucalyptus oil. Smells great and works great too thanks to it’s astringent properties. This one works best when it’s not much paper, mostly leftover glue. Just put some of the oil on a clean cloth and wipe the sticker gunk off. Tea tree oil works just as well!

-Nail polish remover. This one is almost sure to work but can be really bad for painted surfaces so be careful!

-Rubbing alcohol. Again, effective but don’t use it on anything delicate!

-Hairspray. Seriously, is there anything hairspray can’t do?? Just spray and wipe it clean!

5 Ways to Stop the Winter Cold Cycle

January 24, 2013 by admin

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Winter with small children doesn’t have to mean months of back-to-back colds and runny noses. Here are five simple ways to stop sharing germs back and forth between family members!

1.) Create tiny germaphobes. Ok, not that extreme, but talking to your kids about how sickness spreads can be very educational. Explain how people can get each other sick, paint  pictures of germs and hopefully they will be grossed out enough to remember to wash their hands. Other things to teach: Cover your face when you cough or sneeze (I like the elbow method!), no kissing on the mouth (preps them for another talk later) and no sharing of dishes, drinks or silverware.

2) Quarantine. Already have someone sick? Keep them away from the rest of the family, except of course their caretaker. Once they are well make sure to thoroughly sanitize the “sick room”. Wash bedding in hot water and spray the area down with disinfectant.

3) Toothbrush control. Toothbrushes  are a germ paradise. They should be replaced every couple of months but I also recommend tossing them after a nasty illness. You can sanitize toothbrushes weekly by setting them bristles down in hydrogen peroxide for a few minutes then setting them out to air dry. Toothbrushes should be stored individually (never touching one another) in a closed bathroom cabinet or drawer.

4) Disinfect and sanitize. One of the best ways to stop the winter cold cycle! Use a spray disinfectant often to wipe down common surfaces and objects. Light switches, doorknobs, banisters, electronics… anything that multiple family members touch on a regular basis. Put out hand sanitizer in the bathroom and kitchen.

5) Boost immune systems. You can strengthen your family’s defenses by serving nutritious meals and encouraging everyone to drink lots of liquids. Ask your doctor to recommend a good vitamin supplement for each member of the family. Getting enough sleep is also vital, so set a bedtime and stick to it!

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