Dishing The Dirt On Why Your Laundry Is Never As Clean As You’d Like It

Nothing’s more frustrating than doing a load of laundry, only to find that it’s still dirty when you hang it out to dry. At the very least, this can stop you from wearing your favorite items. It can also cause issues from a health perspective if left unchecked. Not to mention that it means more work for you down the line. Putting a wash straight back in won’t even necessarily solve anything. The chances are that you’ll still see soiled clothes at the end of things. Keep on going, and you’re sure to waste endless water and detergent supplies.

If you start to notice that your washing isn’t as clean as you’d like it, then, it’s vital that you take action straight away. In reality, there are usually some pretty obvious reasons for this happening. If your fabrics have got you fed up right now, keep reading to find out what you can do about it.

Clean your washing machine

Your machine should always be your first port of call when washing goes wrong. Believe it or not, washing machines need regular washing. We aren’t just talking about when they do their thing, either. While a regular wash will clean your machine to some extent, you should dedicate yourself to this task at least once a month. The majority of modern washing machines have a setting devoted to cleaning. If yours doesn’t, merely set it on a medium wash with no clothes. By including a cup of white vinegar into the machine each time, you can keep things clean for a long time to come. Neglect this aspect of care, and it’s no wonder your clothes smell a bit funny when they come out of the thing. [Read more…]

12 Favorite Posts from 2018

It’s that time of year! Time to look back on our year and see how things went as we prepare for the next year. I always like to look back and then share some of my favorite posts for the year. This year has been very busy for me at home, and I haven’t done nearly as much writing as I normally have in past years, but I still managed to find 12 posts that I thought were worth sharing again for this year end post!  We have a few recipes, cleaning posts, health, fashion, and even a pet post.  I hope you enjoy!

(Please find the link for each post underneath the featured photo.)

Grilled Hot Wings + 6 Tips to Make Your Summer Cookout a Success

College Football Spirit with Dr Pepper® + DIY Photo Booth Tutorial

12 Tips and Must-Haves for Postpartum Care

5 Tips to Keeping Your Home in Tip-Top Shape for Your Family (and Your Cat)

Chicken Florentine Pasta

Panasonic HomeHawk Front Door Home Monitoring Camera Review and Giveaway

6 Baby Must-Haves for Cold and Flu Season

Fashion Reivew from prAna

Mama’s New Helper: DEEBOT OZMO 610 – Robot Vacuum Review

Homemade Dill Pickles

Cleaning Up with Rejuvenate® Click n Clean™ Multi-Surface Spray Mop System

Christmas Pajamas for the Family Review


I’d love to hear your thoughts on my 12 picks!  And if have a similar post, I’d love for you to share it with me!

Fall Cleaning in My Kitchen

Disclosure: This most contains affiliate links. The opinions are my own.

Since the baby was born last fall, I’ve struggled to catch up and keep up with everything, especially the housekeeping, but the fall season always tends to jumpstart my cleaning habits.  The last couple of months I’ve really been focusing on fall cleaning in my kitchen.  Here are a few areas and items I like to focus on when I’m doing a deep clean in my kitchen.

Decluttering and Organizing Your Cabinets.

My cabinets were getting a little out of hand.  I managed to throw away a few items and rearrange some things.  Now they are looking a lot better and my stuff is way more accessible.  (And I don’t have pots and pans falling out when I open the door!)

Items to consider decluttering – Lids without containers, containers without lids.  Gadgets, appliances, and dishes you never use. [Read more…]

Mama’s New Helper: DEEBOT OZMO 610 – Robot Vacuum Review

Disclosure:  I received a free DEEBOT OZMO 610 for review.  Affiliate links may be contained herein.  The opinions are my own.

Over the years I’ve had the chance to review a LOT of great products, including cleaning products and tools, but I don’t think I’ve ever been more excited about a product review than I am about the ECOVACS DEEBOT OZMO610 2-in-1 Multi-Surface Vacuuming and Mopping Robot.  This is robot vacuum has become a LIFE SAVER at my house!

A few months ago, I wrote a post about cleaning the floor, and I specifically talked about how having a baby, especially one who is now crawling around, multiplies your need to clean the floor a hundred times over.  (And yet, when you have a baby, your time for cleaning seems to be cut in half, or worse!)  But with the DEEBOT OZMO 610, I am able to clean the floor every day!

Here are a few features I love:

  • Remote control or automatic control.
  • Quiet when running.
  • Easy set up via your cell phone or mobile device.
  • Schedule your robot to clean on specific days and time.
  • Works on any hard surface or carpet.
  • Features a place to put liquid cleaner for mopping.
  • Easy to open.
  • Smart navigation and returns home.

The ability to schedule your cleaning is key for us.  Between 5pm and 6pm, I am always giving the baby his dinner, and so I’ve got the vacuum set up to run at 6pm.  It starts off in the kitchen; meanwhile I pick up Thaxton’s toys in the living room, so that it can clean in there and our hallway next.  (By the way, Thaxton loves the vacuum too.  He’s scared of other vacuums and appliances that make noise, but he loves to sit in his Pack n Play or his Jumperoo and watch the vacuum do its thing!)

I usually have the other rooms closed off, but once or twice a week, I make sure there’s no clutter in the floor of those rooms so that it may run in there as well, and I also try to use the mopping function about once a week.  It just takes a minute to put a little cleaner in DEEBOT, and I love being able to smell the fresh cleaner as he mops in our kitchen.

DEEBOT is also have easy to empty.  We have messy pets and people in our home, so I empty DEEBOT after each use, and I am always amazed at how much trash has been picked up.  When I see how much trash there is (especially if we let DEEBOT skip a day or two), it actually freaks me out a little bit, and I can’t believe we used to vacuum only once a week!

This is an amazing product!  I am so pleased with how much cleaner my floors are, and I am thrilled that it’s able to happen without me having to do a bunch of work or take a lot of time of my day!

This product is available at Target and other retailers, and I definitely recommend it!




Cleaning Up with Rejuvenate® Click n Clean™ Multi-Surface Spray Mop System

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Rejuvenate Products.

As a new mom I’ve found that keeping a clean home is more important than ever, but it is also more challenging.  Yes, there are more items to clean and a whole new person to clean up after, but what is even more difficult is finding the time to actually clean. Think about it: Who wants to wash dishes and clean floors when there is a baby to play with?  Nevertheless, the housekeeping show must go on!  Our son is now 6 months old, which means it is almost crawling time, and that means we MUST have a clean floor for him!  This is why I am excited today to talk about the Rejuvenate® Click n Clean™ Multi-Surface Spray Mop System.

This mopping system is a mom’s dream.  The Click n Clean is the only mop that cleans surface-to-surface and delivers professional results for under $35.  It is very easy and clean to use: no mixing up chemicals, no wringing out a mop by hand, and no heavy lifting or getting out multiple cleaning appliances.  With this system, you can literally clean every surface in your home from hardwood and laminate to tile, grout and even carpet.  The Click n Clean mop system allows you to click, clean and go ― no matter the job size. Check it out!


The Click n Clean comes with a microfiber bad that is especially for dust mopping (dry mopping your home).  As a pet owner I can tell you this really comes in handy for daily cleaning up of animal hair and other particles.  There’s also a scrub pad for wet mopping with the Rejuvenate cleaner of your choice and a super scrub pad for those hard to remove spots. Additionally, one thing that sets this system apart is that it comes with a grout brush attachment.  We have tile floors in our bathroom, and this brush is great for that!

Another thing that sets this system apart from other mopping systems is that Rejuvenate has a line of liquid cleaners for every surface in your home:

  • No Bucket Floor Cleaner (for wood, laminate, and other surfaces)
  • Luxury Vinyl Floor Cleaner
  • Marble, Granite & Stone Floor Cleaner
  • Tile & Grout Everyday Cleaner
  • Grout Deep Cleaner

The cleaners easily attach to your mop with a bottle adapter (3 are included), and they also come with spray nozzles for easy and convenient spot cleaning.

The cleaning pads are very easy to attach to the mop’s swivel head and are very durable and machine washable.

Once the cleaning pad or grout brush are attached, all you have to do is place a bottle adapter on top of the cleaning bottle of your choice. Then turn the bottle over, and it easily slides on to the mop.


After the cleaner is placed in the mop, simply click a button and the cleaner will be released on your surface.  Then just mop up!

Our vinyl floor can be a challenge to clean with all the cooking and grilling (and spilling) we do. (And did I mention we also have kids and pets!)  So I am especially excited about using the Click n Clean in this room.  Here’s a before and after picture of my results (dirty spots and all).

The results were great!  We also tried this in other rooms in our home.  The grout brush definitely worked wonders on our tile when combined the Click n Clean mop on the floor.  And most of all, I LOVED using this on our hardwood.  Most liquid cleaners and mops are not safe to use on hard floors, so the Click n Clean is a life saver for that!

Check out this demo video:

Rejuvenate® Click n Clean™ Multi-Surface Spray Mop System is available at The Home Depot for $34.97.  If you are looking for a way to clean your floors quickly and effectively, you should definitely give it a try!

5 Tips to Keeping Your Home in Tip-Top Shape for Your Family (and Your Cat)

Disclosure: This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #FreeandCleanLiving #CollectiveBias

Having a clean home is both a luxury and a necessity, and having a family makes this statement even more true.  We all want for our homes to be a safe and clean environment for our family, but this requires constant, never ending work.  Having pets in your home adds even more challenges to your housekeeping routine, but if you are like me, you love your cats and there is no challenge you won’t tackle for them!  Lucky for us, Purina® New TIDY CATS® Free & Clean™ Unscented Clumping Litter is here to see us through!  Today I’ve got 5 Tips to Keeping Your Home in Tip-Top Shape for Your Family (and Your Cat), plus information on the newest product from TIDY CATS.

Use a High Quality Cat Litter Product

Ever since I adopted Rebel 10 years ago, I have a been a TIDY CATS user.  I currently have 3 cats in my home, and they prefer TIDY CATS.. (That is to say, they’ve never avoided or gone outside the litter box while using their products.)  And I’ve been satisfied with how their products block odors when you scoop regularly.

Their latest and greatest product is TIDY CATS® Free & Clean™ Unscented Clumping Litter.  This new product features Unscented Odor Control with the Power of Activated Charcoal.  Obviously controlling odors is my number one goal, and I love that Free & Clean offers you the odor-absorbing power of activated charcoal plus TidyLock® Protection to lock away odors.  (It gives you the clean you need without the extra perfumes, fragrances, and dyes).

The product is also 99.% dust free.  This is also extremely important to me; I hate pouring litter in the box and seeing a cloud of dust!  Plus, my cat Mina has allergies and other upper respiratory issues, so she needs a product that is dust free.

The product also features strong clumps for easy cleanup. As the person who usually scoops the litter box, this is definitely a plus.  Not only does it make clean up easier, but it also means we don’t have to replace the litter with new product quite as often.

TIDY CATS® Free & Clean™ Unscented Clumping Litter is available for purchase at Target.  Target is my favorite place to shop, because they carry all my favorite brands, and it is always easy to find what I’m looking for.  The pet products and housekeeping supplies I need are also conveniently located right in the front of the store, which means I can get in and out of the store quickly.

Target also frequently has TIDY CATS on sale.  Before making my Target run, I always check the Target app for their weekly ad and I look through Cartwheel is to see if there are deals on anything I am planning to buy.  The other day I used my Cartwheel account to get 20% off the 35 pound container of litter.

Proper Litter Box Maintenance and Placement

Most cat experts recommend daily scooping of the litter box; however, we usually scoop ours every other day.  We may scoop more often if company is coming over or if there just happens to be a special need.  You should also be prepared to top your litter box with additional litter as needed and completely empty out your litter box, clean it and replace your litter with all new product.  (I usually top ours off a couple of times a week, and we completely change out the litter and clean the box about every 6 weeks or as needed.)

To clean the litterbox when putting in all new litter, we start by taking the box outside for emptying, and we give it a good rinse with the water hose.  I then use dishwashing liquid to give it an initial cleaning, and then I pour in a little vinegar and a few drops of essential oil like lemon or peppermint to get things smelling nicely.  Then after it dries I usually sprinkle in a small layer of baking soda on the bottom of the box before adding all new litter.

Litterbox placement is also important. Your litter box should be placed in an area of your home that is easily accessible to your cat, and it should not be placed in a high traffic or noisy area of your home or any place your cat may be anxious about using.  If possible place the litterbox in an extra bedroom or small room not in use.  Alternatively, it can placed in a laundry room, small bathroom, or mud room.  Do NOT place the litterbox near food and water bowls.

Quantity. Experts also say you should have one litterbox for each cat, plus an additional litterbox.  As for us, we have just one very large litterbox.  It is actually an under-the-bed storage bin that we’ve repurposed as a a litterbox, and our cats are fine with sharing.  (But if your cats fight or have other issues, you should get more litterboxes.)

Floor Cleaning

Another way to keep your home looking and smelling fresh is with regular floor cleaning.  I like to sweep up and clean up the room where we keep the litterbox about once a week.  (This room is carpeted, but I keep a large vinyl mat in the room for easy cleaning.  It just needs a little vacuuming and a little mopping or spot cleaning with a little all purpose cleaner and rag.)

It is also very necessary to clean the floors in the rest of home quite often (otherwise we’d be overrun with pet hair and litter rocks).  I like to vacuum our carpets and all hard floors once a week.  We also mop all the hard floors; this makes them look shiny and bright, and it also leaves a nice refreshing scent.

I also keep carpet cleaning spray on hand for the occasional pet stain on the carpet and I spinkle the carpet with baking soda or fabric refreshing before vacuuming when I want things to smell really great.

Deodorizing Your Home

In additional to proper litter box cleaning and maintenance, you should find other ways to deodorize your home.  One way is with a good essential oil diffuser.  There are a lot of oils that are specifically for getting rid of odors and refreshing your home.  I like peppermint or anything from the citrus family, but you have to be careful as some oils can be irritating to your pet or other people in your home with allergies.  We also use scented oil plug-ins when we want things to smell really great.

Additionally I sprinkle baking soda on our carpets, rugs and upholstery before vacuuming to absorb odors, and I occasionally spray these areas with fabric refresher.

Pet bedding can also be the source of odors, so you should wash your pet’s blankets and other bedding on a regular basis, as well as keep toys clean and replace toys and bedding as needed with something new.

Surface Cleaning and Other Household Maintenance

You should also remember that pets are not the only ones who can make a mess or make odors in your home.  Take garbage out regularly and immediately take garage outside that maybe contain leftover foods, packaging from raw meats, and anything else that may smell bad.

Also, avoid leaving dirty dishes in the sink, as well as food containers or dishes on your countertops and stove top, and wipe down all counters and surfaces daily.

If you any tips to help refresh your home and especially your pet area, I’d love to hear them!  Please join the conversation by commenting on this post.

And if you are looking for a new way to refresh your cat’s room try new Tidy Cats Free & Clean Unscented litter at Target!

Taking the Pain out of Spring Cleaning

Spring is approaching – and you know what that means? Yes, it’s time to dust off your rubber gloves and cleaning kit! Giving your home a good spring clean may sound dull and boring, but it can also be a lot of fun and help boost your well being. After all, a tidy home can mean a tidy mind. Here are some ways to take the pain out the annual cleaning blitz!

Get everyone involved

They say no pain, no gain. Well, it’s true for most things in life, but with cleaning, it’s not truly painful, it’s just a bit of a turn-off. However, if you get the whole house involved you can make it into a group social activity. It doesn’t matter whether you share a house with friends or colleagues, or have a large family, get everyone signed up the annual spring clean.

You can throw everyone’s name into a hat, along with rooms in another, and pick out who will get what. Then dish out the cleaning kit and get everyone busy!

Offer to help others

If you live alone, or only with one or two other people, you may want to think about getting some friends or family around to help – especially if you’re thinking about getting rid of some old furniture or large items. It might be a big ask for some, but if you promise to return the favor, then you can all help each other.

Offer incentives

A great way to get everyone behind the house clean is to offer some incentives (bribes some might say!). It might mean a nice lunch half way through for everyone, or a dinner out in the evening after everything is complete. If you all have something nice to look forward to at the end of all that scrubbing, it might make the whole thing a little easier to swallow!

Call in experts

If you have some particularly tough cleaning tasks, then think about calling in experts to help. You can find companies that will support you with all sorts of things, including carpet deep cleaning, oven and kitchen cleaning and house repairs. You’ll also want to make sure you don’t have any house invaders. If you do, try out Go-Forth Pest Control of Hickory.

If in doubt about who to call, speak to family and friends, to see if they have any recommendations they can give you.

Always stay on top

One way of making the annual spring clean a little more appealing is to keep on top of the household chores throughout the year. By keeping the levels of clutter down, and dusting and vacuuming on a regular basis, it will make the job a little easier. Also, throughout the year, try and keep one step ahead in the kitchen and bathroom. If you leave limescale to build up in your bath and sink, and the oven to fill up with grease and grime, then you’re setting yourself up for a very tough annual clean!

Removing Stains from Rugs

Bringing both stylish and practical benefits to a home, rugs are the perfect addition to any room. It is however an inevitable misfortune that at one time or another, we’re going to spill something on said rug. Whether it be food, or the dreaded red wine, spills are unavoidable. Although irritating, it isn’t the end of the world and there some simple steps to take to stop these spills from staining your rug. Here is a list of some don’ts when it comes to stains on your rug.

Don’t Wait

It’s imperative that you act as soon as the spill happens. The less time the spill is sitting on the rug, the less it will soak deeper in to the material. Something you might not think of but is always important to do is to also check underneath your rug. If it was a large spill, some might have soaked through the rug to the floor underneath. If you have carpet or wood floor under your rug, this can become damaged too if left.

Don’t Scrub

As soon as a spill happens its more than tempting to just start furiously scrubbing away in an attempt to aggressively get the stain out. This actually causes more damage than good as all you are doing is pressing the stain further into the fibres. Its better to blot the stain with some kitchen roll to absorb most of the liquid first.

Don’t use Warm Water

With most cleaning, you’re used to using warm or hot water to properly disinfect. With a spill, warm water will only intensify the colours of the stain. It’s best to use a cloth soaked in room temperature or cold water. This picks up most of the spill and you can use warm water later to get any left over residue.

Don’t Use Products Without Testing First

Before going in with any kind of cleaning products, you must always try a test patch first. On the underside of the rug, test the products you intend to use to see whether the rug has a reaction. It’s best to try this underneath the rug where it won’t be visible than to apply to straight to the spill and find it stains or damages the rug. Never use bleach. This will cause irreversible damage to your rug.

Don’t Use Rouge Cleaning Methods

Along with bleach, avoid using laundry or dishwasher detergents. In the panic of dealing with a spill, most of us will reach for any cleaning product to attempt to lift the markings. However, using things such as detergent will cause a build up of product in the fibres that will attract dust and dirt that will worsen the area.

Following these simple steps will help to make cleaning any spill or stain as easy as possible. While some stains may cause noticeable damage, like red wine on a white rug, most other spillages should come up fairly easily by using the correct cleaning techniques.

Useful Tips for Cleaning the Bathroom


Many people spend a lot of time cleaning the kitchen and the living room, only because these are the places that are often seen by people visiting your home. The bathroom is often ignored. That being said, keep on reading the rest of this post and we’ll share with you some of the easy tips and tricks to keep the bathroom clean.

Use Baby Oil

For stand alone tubs, or even in any other type of bathtub, one of the most common problems is soap scum, which often collects on the side. An easy trick to get rid of the latter is to use baby oil. Combine four parts of water with one part of any branded or generic baby oil. Transfer it to a spray bottle and apply on the bathtub. Leave it for quite a while, providing enough time for the mixture to rest on the soap scum. Finish by wiping it off with a clean rag and rinsing.

Use Lemon Juice

This can be useful when cleaning bathtubs or freestanding sinks from Badeloft. The acidity in the juice is basically the one that is responsible for making it effective in the removal of stain. Combine lemon juice and borax. Put a mixture into a sponge and rub the stain that is visible. Apply enough force to remove the stain. Be sure to use a soft sponge so as not to scratch the material of whatever it is that is being cleaned.

Use Cola

The cola that is being cooled in your fridge does not only make a refreshing beverage, but can also be used for cleaning the toilet bowl. All that you have to do is open a bottle or can of cola and have it emptied on the bowl. Leave it for about one hour, scrub, and flush. The cola has ingredients that can help to loosen the stain on the bowl, which results from hard water used when flushing.

Use Baking Soda

In one article from Reader’s Digest, the use of baking soda was recommended as one of the best ways to make the bathroom tiles spotless. Create a cleaning paste by mixing baking soda, borax, and water. Once the desired consistency is achieved, put a small amount of the solution in a toothbrush and scrub the bathroom floor. Finish it off by rinsing with water.

Use Vinegar

Another common household item that will prove to be useful when cleaning the bathroom is a vinegar. Mix equal parts of vinegar and water. Place it in a spray bottle. This is going to be a

multipurpose cleaner that will work in tiles, sinks, and bathtubs, among other things. Be sure to let it sit for a while before having it rinsed.

In sum, cleaning the bathroom does not need to be a difficult undertaking. The materials needed are pretty much basic and they are available in the kitchen. It does not require too much time and effort on your end.

4 Reasons to Hire a Cleaning Service For Your Home

Most people fail to realize just how hard it can be to own a home. There are so many different things a homeowner has to deal with on a regular basis. For most homeowners, trying to find the time needed to adequately handle things around their residence is nearly impossible. Usually, the first thing to suffer when a homeowner has a lack of time is the cleaning. Instead of compromising the cleanliness of your home, you need to find a cleaning service. Here are some of the reasons why you need to hire a cleaning service for your home.

1. You Don’t Have the Time

The first reason to hire a professional to help keep your home clean is due to the fact that you do not have the time. For most homeowners, finding time to do little else besides go to work and come home is impossible. By letting a professional handle the cleaning of your home, you will be able to focus more on work and home duties. As soon as you see you do not have time to do this job, you need to start trying to find the right cleaning service in your area.

2. You Have a Lot of Visitors

Another very common reason why most people hire a cleaning service is due to their high volume of guests. If you have a large number of people coming over to your home on a regular basis, then you will need to find a way to make sure your home is presentable. By letting a cleaning services handle your housework, you can rest assured the job will be done the right way. Make sure you take the time to find the right cleaning company in your area before you make a decision on which one to hire.

The last thing you want is to have your guests show up and your home be a wreck. This can be very embarrassing and may cause your guest to think poorly of you. The best way to avoid this horrible experience is by taking the time to hire the right cleaning service. Be sure to learn more here about reputable cleaning services in your area.

3. Small Children at Home

Yet another very common reason to have a cleaning service is the fact you have small children at home. The more things you have on your floors, the higher the risk of a baby picking it up and putting it in their mouths. This can cause them a lot of bodily harm, but can be avoided by hiring a professional cleaning service. By taking proactive measure to keep your home clean you will be able to keep your baby safe by removing all hazards from their path.

Failing to properly clean a home with children in it will lead to a number of problems. Smaller children has a tendency to put things in their mouth. This is why you will need to ensure your home’s flooring stays clean and debris free. If you do not have the time or the tools to do this work on your own, then hiring a professional is the best course of action. A cleaning service like this London cleaner company will have no problem doing the work needed to keep your home spotless.

4. Getting Some Help With Organization

Is your home a disorganized wreck? Over time, having too much stuff in your home can become a real problem. If you are feeling a bit overwhelmed, the best thing you can do is call in a cleaning service to

help organize your home. They will be able to help you get rid of clutter and get the right systems in place to keep your things organized for the long haul.

Paying professionals to do this type of work will be worth every penny. Onsite estimates are the best way to narrow the selection of cleaning services in your area.