How Clean Is Your House?: Hundreds of Handy Tips to Make Your Home Sparkle
No, I'm not asking you - it's a book I read last week. How Clean is Your House? is written by Kim Woodburn and Aggie MacKenzie of the TV show of the same name. These queens of clean go into Britain's and the United States' filthiest homes and clean them up. Believe me, these houses are filthy. Even in my worst pre-FlyLady days, my house was never as dirty as these houses are! My daughter and I (and my younger son, too!) like to watch their show to see just how bad it can get and how the house looks after Kim and Aggie have worked their magic.
The book is just as fun and informal as the show. You can almost hear Kim saying, "Don't tickle, dear, scrub!" as you read their instructions for cleaning the kitchen. The book is full of little tips for using common household products to clean, such as vinegar, bleach, baking soda, and dishwashing liquid. They recommend very few commercial cleaners, and no toilet brushes! Gasp!
The book begins with a short quiz to find out if you're a filth offender. My score indicated that I'm just average . . . "and who wants to be middle of the road? Go on, dear, try and better yourself . . . let yourself sparkle, you'll feel better for it!" Kim and Aggie each recommend products for their essential cleaning kit - things you probably have in your cabinets right now - and then proceed by giving cleaning instructions room by room throughout the house. The Getting Started chapter has pointers for daily, weekly, monthly, and seasonal cleaning routines. The overriding principle is simply do a little each day (where have we heard that before?!).
My favorite advice? How to keep a toilet brush sanitary. Kim and Aggie do NOT use toilet brushes, but include this page if you just have to brush (I do). After cleaning the toilet, flush it and add some bleach. Leave the brush to stand in it. Flush clean water over the brush, clean the brush holder with hot soapy water, then empty the dirty water into the toilet. And replace your brush regularly.