Monday, 13 May 2019

Down to Basics - In So Many Ways


A slightly different post today, because although the interiors of my cupboards must be fascinating and the contents are going down slowly but surely ... we have broadened the whole Challenge concept.  

We are now on a bit more of a push to get Down to Basics in more areas of our lives.  And I say 'our lives' as we are both totally of the mind that we need to simplify things and get our lives on a slower, easier path.

The first big thing to go was listed on Facebook Marketplace on Saturday night and by 6pm last night it was gone.  The big thing was Alan's treadmill, a large ungainly running machine that although used at first had long since been abandoned and had sat in the conservatory looking at us reproachfully every time we passed by.  It was that big and heavy that I couldn't even move it to clean underneath, so this morning has been a brilliant morning of Spring cleaning the whole room one side at a time.

So now we have sparkling windows ...


... and clean floors, skirting boards and every nook and cranny has been hoovered, wiped down and mopped.  

(The mark you see under the mirror seemingly on the wall ... is in fact on my camera lens and will not come off, but I love my current camera so I put up with it!!)


And talking of cleaning ... there were a couple of comments on the last post about how clean everything looked, and then last night I got an email asking me what products do I use and how do I keep everywhere so clean and tidy.  I think our house just photographs very well because virtually all our walls are white and all the floors are pale-ish.  But while they were out I took a photo of the things I use.

A Dyson, a floor mop with a squirty bottle on it ... you push the trigger and it squirts out a dilute mix of your favourite floor cleaning product and refill as and when it runs dry ... Flash Lemon Scented Multi-purpose cleaner that we buy in large bottles from the wholesaler and decant into an old Flash trigger bottle or the other bottle that is kept under the sink.  My guilty secret, and one of the things that I am using slightly too many of at the moment with a tiny puppy in the house, are throwaway floor and anti-bacterial wipes. 


But these and a dash of bleach for the toilets are the only products I use for ALL surfaces.  We do have to be careful not to use too much bleach or too many strong cleaning products as we run on a septic tank and not into mains drainage.  We have to keep our good bacteria alive!!


My best ever buy and most used cleaning thing are a set of Clean and Gleam Window Cloths from Lakeland which I use along with a spritz of the Flash to clean all sorts of surfaces not just the glass that they are advertised for.  It seemed a large outlay at the time for two cloths but I have been using my current pair (one is used damp and the other dry) for the last two years, so the investment was well worth it!


Another comment on yesterdays post was how tidy my cupboards are and yes, I agree.  I think I am getting a little OCD about the neatness of the cupboards as they empty and become more streamlined.  The tins of tuna for Ginger are a case in point, recently I've noticed when I'm putting them away ... the labels all have to face front even though I know they are all tins of tuna  😁 


Sue xx



17 comments:

  1. I have those cloths from Lakeland - best thing since sliced bread! We also have a lonely languishing tread mill!!

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    1. Get it sold, we made £100 last night .... I won't tell you how much it cost us originally though, lol !!

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  2. My/Our treadmill languished for years and then I broke my wrist, needed to walk everyday for my bone density and reduce cholesterol. Well wouldn't you know it the old treadmill started getting such a workout it broke down. Now I have a new one. My routine for the spring/summer/fall will be a weeks worth of walking outdoors, and then a weeks worth of using the treadmill. Hope to keep off the weight I lost and perhaps take a bit more off.

    God bless.

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    1. Haha ... you are the first person I've heard of that has worn out a treadmill. Well done you :-)

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  3. Great post. Sometimes you just need to move one thing to spur a great change.

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    1. That is SO true, just seeing the space that has appeared without the treadmill being there seems to have moved me up a few gears. Now I want space in other areas too.

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  4. Hi Sue. All the labels on the products on my shelves face forward too. OCD? Probably, but it makes it so much easier to see what I have. I'm all for getting down to basics and taking life slower and easier.
    Suzanne from Washington state

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    1. Yes it makes sense doesn't it ... and the shelves look so much neater. It still doesn't seem to help Alan to find things though, although he does know where the tuna is ;-)

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  5. I wish I could be minimalist.....I'm more of a hoarder. I am slowly moving towards getting rid of more clutter, though I'll never be minimalist, sadly.

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    1. I doubt I'll ever be a true minimalist, but they do say you do the minimalism that is right for you. With me that is lots of Dvds ... but in folders and behind cupboard doors and lots of books neatly on shelves. There ARE areas and clutter that I am feeling the need to jettison though and that's what I'm working towards for a couple of weeks.

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  6. I am not surprised you are extending your Back to Basics ideology. We found that largely living in the motorhome means that everything has to earn its place in the limited space, some performing multiple tasks and certainly no trinkets. However, it did take longer for the principle to become normal, I think I fought against not buying things for quite a while, but then suddenly realised how much excess other people had in their houses! Good on you for finding out after only a year.

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    1. Once you realise how little you actually need to live easily and happily on a day to day basis it does make getting rid of previously acquired so called necessities that much easier. I'm even looking at my bookshelves now and thinking 'wow do I actually NEED that many books' ... and that is a new thing for me!!

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  7. My friends laugh at me as all my labels in the pantry have to face forward - and have to be the English wording (the other side of the can or pkg. will be in French). They claim that I also alphabetize everything - but I don't think I'm quite that bad! :-)

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    1. Haha ... putting things in alphabetical order would be a step too far for me too, but nice neat labels all facing forward are a joy to the eyes ;-)

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  8. I was delighted to discover this challenge today.
    I need to keep a sharper eye on your sidebar!
    The tuna and chickpea recipe sounds excellent, thanks for sharing it.
    A few weeks ago I finally set to and started clearing out cupboards and drawers yet again.
    I've decided I no longer want to be curator of a museum consisting of at least 4 generations worth of family stuff.
    It's hard to part with stuff that's been inherited but it has to be done.
    I can almost imagine the house heaving a sigh of relief every time another load leaves to go to Hospice or the recycling centre.
    More importantly I feel much lighter.
    Sue

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    1. I hadn't realised that you were a Sue too ... there are a lot of us :-)

      It's one thing I have always been able to get rid of quite easily, so called heirlooms ... I have a really good memory so just one little USEFUL thing chosen from a deceased relatives things is all I need to keep their memory alive and celebrated. For instance I have a ring on my finger that was my best friends, little hammer that belonged to one of my grans, a pair of wooden chairs that were my other Nana's, a little stool that was my favourite aunt and uncles ... all are in use on an almost daily basis. I wouldn't dream of keeping tea-sets or tablecloths etc ... unless I actually needed them.

      Giving things away to benefit others is also a joyous thing to do.

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  9. Many of the best people come as Sues!
    I like the idea of helping others to feel joyous; thanks.
    Sue

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