Kamis, 19 Maret 2009

Household Chores In Half The Time

By: Linda Gray
Household chores aren't hard, nor are they particularly boring - nice to have time to think sometimes! BUT they are time-consuming. These tried and tested tips will cut your 'chores time' in half...

1. Organize:

Start at the top of the house and clear it up! Then allocate places for absolutely everything. Install shelves and cupboards in the bedrooms, and make sure there is enough space for each pile of clothes. Before you go on to the next room, put a label on the front of the shelf in full view of the shorter members of the family. Then there will be no 'But I don't know where it goes' complaints when you ask them to put their stuff away.

Work through the house, re-organizing. You don't have to spend loads of money. I was once obliged to use 'cupboards' made from cardboard boxes. They lasted a short time and the kids were quite happy to put their clothes away in the novelty cupboards.

Shelves are a must in the children's rooms - you'll always be on at them to clear up but at least the little darlings may actually do it if they know where everything goes!

The kitchen has to be organized, no question, or you'll waste tons of time every day, looking for a wooden spoon, moving dishes to fit plates on shelves etc;

2. Health Before Beauty:

Wall to wall carpet harbours germs even the most rigorous hoovering won't destroy. Throw them all out and go for polished wooden floors. Use rugs on cold spots and shake them outside every day or two. Sweep wooden floors gently with a soft broom. Avoid hoovering every day - some hoovers emit a very fine dust into the air through their exhaust. This dust isn't particularly good for the lungs, better the dust underfoot!

A quick shake of a rug and a sweep will take a lot less time than getting out the hoover, doing the biz, wrapping it all up and putting it away aging. And the broom doesn't interfere with the radio!

3. Bye bye bleach:

Do you need shades when you look at your kitchen sink? Chances are the bleach is taking over! Research has proved that those of us who live in a sterile environment have a less efficient immune system than those who slum it a bit! Cut the bleaching by half. And if you sterilise your house for the benefit of guests and their opinions, then be prepared to inform them gracefully that you are building your family's immune systems - and saving the earth a little. Be smug.

4. 90% less ironing:

Ironing or pressing cloth reduces it's lifespan considerably. You may have an outwardly smooth appearance but inside the cloth is a tangled mess of flattened fibres.

As soon as the washing machine has finished it's final spin, hang the washload on an outside washing line, weather permitting. Shake each item before pegging it out, and pull jeans into shape.

Air the washload by folding carefully and putting in an airing or warming cupboard, or hang over radiators.

If there's a delay in hanging out your washing, take it out of the machine and fold it carefully, smoothing and gently pulling each item into shape.
Now the moment of truth! Only iron what NEEDS to be ironed. Towels, sheets, jumpers, underwear and overalls probably don't need ironing.

Smoothing and folding damp washing eliminates lots of creases, and everything that doesn't get a fibre crushing treatment will live a lot longer!

5. Designer Leftovers:

Try these delicious family dishes from leftovers, saving time in the kitchen, oh, and money too. Note: Leftovers should be consumed or discarded within 24 hours.

Bake too many jacket potatoes, cool and refrigerate leftovers overnight. Cooking a whole tray of potatoes takes no longer than cooking one or two. Use your leftover jacket potatoes in different ways:

- slice and fry in hot olive oil, adding some mixed herbs or cumin spice to the oil.

- peel, dice and add to an omelette with cheese and ham

- peel and make a rough potato salad with a little tinned sweet corn, tuna and chopped onion.

Double the rice quantity, cool, cover and refrigerate leftovers overnight. Using leftover rice:

- make a plain omelette and cut into pieces. Set aside. Stir fry leftover rice and add a little soy sauce for flavour, then gently stir in omelette. Serve hot.

- mix cold rice with fresh raw chopped vegetables. Chill for 30 minutes before serving.

- Fry in olive or nut oil a finely chopped onion, tomato, green pepper and a few sliced mushrooms. Add rice to pan and stir fry gently, until hot right through.

Cook a bigger chicken than you need then hide the leftovers in the fridge. Try these ideas for the next day's meal..

- cut chicken into pieces, cover with a curry sauce and bake thoroughly in a hot oven.

- mix cut-up chicken with a finely chopped onion and stir in a half mayo half natural yoghurt dressing. Add a few walnuts for a special treat. Chill before serving.

- Stir fry chicken with a few vegetables and mix into a bowl of hot noodles. Serve with an oriental style sauce.

Always make sure re-heated food is piping hot before serving.

With a little careful planning in the kitchen, a part of tomorrow's dinner will always be taken care of today!

Plan ahead and organize chores to fit in with your timetable and not the other way round. If you work from home, take a break from your computer every hour or so and spend 10-20 minutes on the basics; peeling veg for dinner, hanging out washing, a quick tidy up, whatever's next on your list.

Published At: www.Isnare.com
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