Tidy Choice Blog | House Cleaning, Housekeeping, Domestic Cleaners
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The Mayor of London has announced a range of events celebrating St. Patrick’s Day (March 17th) in central London and Trafalgar Square. The celebration will last for two days from March 16th to March 18th. Are you ready to dress your children and yourself in shamrocks and dive into the celebration?
St. Patrick’s Day Parade
An interesting fact about the parade is that the tradition didn’t start in Britain but in America. In 1762, several Irish soldiers marched several blocks to a tavern in lower Manhattan, which marks the beginning of the long tradition. This year in London, the parade will begin at Greek Park and pass through Piccadilly and White Hall with vibrating Irish music and energetic Irish dance.
Family Zone – Pall Mall East
Pall Mall East, next to Trafalgar Square, on 17 March from 12-6pm will have a range of fun events and activities designed for families, including education on St. Patrick’s Day history, performances of fairytales about Irish pirates, and bubble shows. This is the best place to celebrate the holiday with your children.
Best Irish Restaurants and Irish Food Market
The Irish food market, as part of the celebration, will be located at Trafalgar Square East, alluring both adults and kids with buttermilk chicken burgers, Clonakilty black puddings, a fine selection of pies and sandwiches, and etc.
You also have many options on fine Irish restaurants in London. The Ivy Restaurant in Leicester Square serves the incredible Sheperd’s pie and toffee pudding. They only have limited space left for the St. Patrick’s Day weekend. If you cannot book yourself in, their sister restaurants are also worth a try.
How can you skip a glass of Guinness?
For parents and other adults, we also have something seductive for you. IRISH PUBS! We would recommend you to leave your kids at home with a trustworthy childcare person for this bit of the celebration. It’s the time of the year when you should order yourself the best Guinness in the city.
March is a gift shopping month. Mother’s Day is on March 11th and Easter starts at the end of March. That’s a lot of gifts to plan for. Today, let’s start with the toughest one, Mother’s Day gifts.
YOU are the Best Gift
There are a lot amazing gift ideas. However, keep in mind that company is always the best gift. If you haven’t seen your mother for a while, book a restaurant now and schedule a dinner with her on Mother’s Day. If you are too tangled in work to spare some dinner time, call her now and ask about her life.
Your Mother Also Needs to Slow Down
Relaxation and free time are incredibly desirable in this busy city. Buying your mother some relaxing time can really flatter her. Book her a reliable cleaner to free her from tedious housework; buy her a sound bath and give her mind some deep meditation.
Care About Her Health
Gym membership is always on the top list for a healthy living. Get her a gym membership in her area, encouraging her to work out more. If your mother already has one, then health food shops are your next step. They often have a wide selection of healthy food ranging from enhances supplements to nutritional breakfasts. Visiting a store near you or checking out their websites will be a good start.
Don’t Forget Your Mother Is a Beautiful Lady
You can get some ideas from your female friends’ preferences for Valentine’s Day gifts. Jewelry, scented candles, flowers, and perfumes are all fabulous ideas. Some department stores have created new web pages dedicated to Mother’s Day. It’s worth browsing through some of them and get some inspirations.
Lingering smells are a common issue faced by many homes, and there are various reasons why your home may be experiencing these yucky odours.
The truth is that there are very few easy fixes to these issues. In most cases, spraying air freshener all over your house is going to solve the problem only in the short run. Once the air freshening particles fizzle out, it’s likely that bad odours would also return. For a more permanent fix, you first need to find out the source of the smell, which would indicate which appropriate measures need to be taken.
One common culprit of household stench is mould, which produces smelly gases that can cause health problems in humans. These invasive mushrooms love moist spaces, and are commonly found on your home’s walls and ceilings, as well as in cupboards and other furniture. Over time, the fungi colony can also grow into your walls and furniture’s interiors, making the problem even harder to solve. If mould is only found on your home’s surface, you should be able to remove it with a bleach and water solution. However, if the mould has already penetrated a surface that it is sitting on, specialist help would be needed.
To prevent such problems from occurring, ensure good ventilation in your home, especially in your bathroom. This way, you can be ensured that your home’s freshness and cleanliness would not be ruined by these invasive fungi.
Can you smell rotten eggs in your home? If that’s not due to the actual presence of rotten eggs, consider checking out your sewer. The smell may come from dry or leaking drain traps in your home. In this case, the sound of water leaking could give you a clue on what is wrong with your home. And if you are convinced that there is a problem with your sewer, consider calling a plumber.
A more unfortunate source of the rotten egg smell is gas leakage. If you suspect that this is what you home is experiencing, avoid using your home’s electricity or igniting flammable products. Leave your home immediately. Then call your energy company to get them to deal with the issue.
Dirty animals can also be a cause of undesirable odour in your home, even if you love them to bits!
Check how your pet smells, and you might find the source of your house’s problem. Therefore, always remember to bathe them occasionally to keep your beloved animals and your home in hygienic conditions.
Otherwise, the smell may also be due to your pet’s urine. While urine on wooden floor is easy to clean, when the crime scene of your pet’s accident happens to be your carpets or sofas, things can be tougher to resolve.
If you witness the event taking place, make sure you try to quickly remove as much of the urine as possible with a dry cloth. Do not rub the towel, as this may spread the urine further. Then wash the sofa or carpet’s fabric with a mixture of 50% water and 50% vinegar. Then sprinkle baking soda on the area.
If animal urine smell has been lingering in your house for a while, you should consider getting your furniture professionally steam-cleaned, as the furniture is likely to have absorbed much of the urine by then.
Besides your pets, animal corpses can also be the source of smells in your home. These can be hard to find, especially if they are stuck in your walls, in your chimney, or under your flooring. If you can’t find, remove and disinfect them yourself, call an exterminator to do the job for you.
Your Dishwasher or Washing Machine
Dishwashers and washing machines are some household areas which many people would never think of cleaning. Yet, these are great places for mould to grow in. To remove smells coming from these places, run an empty cycle in each machine with a cup of vinegar.
Why does our kitchen smell so good at dinner time and yet so horrible the next morning? To clean your house of any post-meal odour, make sure to clean up all of last night’s dishes. Ventilate your home as much as you can by opening your windows and using an air filter. Lastly, pour some coffee ground or baking soda onto a bowl and leave it in your kitchen over night. These two ingredients are great at masking strong smells, which helps to maintain a decent smell in your home until your place has been properly ventilated.
Spring is the season when everything comes back to life. As temperature rises, thick cashmere sweaters can be put away. However, before you start doing that, proper cleaning is necessary. It is recommended to wear a piece of cashmere knitwear several times before you wash it. You don’t have to bring it to dry cleaning. TidyChoice provides you an alternative method which enables you to wash it gently and professionally at home.
1st Spot Cleaning
Before washing the luxurious material, deal with the stains first. Gently use the damped cashmere brush to apply cashmere stain remover onto the spots. Leave the item for several minutes to allow the solution to completely dissolve the stains.
2nd Hand Wash
Soak your item in a clean basin filled with cool water. Add cashmere shampoo into the basin and gently massage your item for several minutes. Let it bathe in the solution for 30 minutes before you take it out. The Laundress provides great cashmere care products. If you have never tried it, now it’s the time.
Dryers will just destroy cashmere. Simply put your item on a flat drying rack and allow the air to do the job. You should definitely avoid hangers when drying cashmere or knitwear in general. Your clothes can grow ears. The air-dry process might take a while especially during the winter season in London. To slightly speed up the process, you can bring your drying rack near a radiator. Trust TidyChoice, it’s worth the wait.
At last, Store
Fold your soft and shiny cashmere items and store them on the top shelf of your wardrobe as you won’t need them for a while. Do prepare some anti-moth products such as cedar balls or scented sachets to keep your cashmere fresh for the whole year.
Now, are you ready to wash some cashmere items and get ready for spring?
We touch, hear, see, smell, and taste in order to explore our surroundings. Not only do children touch their toys, but they sometimes enjoy licking, chewing, and biting their playthings. In this process, they get in contact with various germs and can even catch illnesses.
To remain healthy while their immune systems are still developing, small children need help to reduce their encounters with undesirable bacteria in their toys. First and foremost, parents can do their part by regularly cleaning the objects that their kids like to play with.
So how should toys be cleaned? The answer depends on which toys we are talking about.
Firstly, let’s establish that rubber bath toys do need to be cleaned. Many people may assume that their regular contact with soap and bath water is sufficient for these playthings to remain sufficiently hygienic. This is false. The damp condition that these toys are often in is great for the growth of mould, which is not only disgusting, but can also cause rashes on your child’s skin.
To clean rubber bath toys, simply dip them in a 50/50 hot water and white vinegar solution after each use. Then dry them soon after.
Toys made from fabric can usually be cleaned in the washing machine the same way that clothes are washed. However, do take a look at the instruction label in case your toy happens to be an exception to the rule.
This suggestion does not apply to toys with batteries, which can be ruined if not hand-washed. Large toys may also not fit inside your washing machine.
Small Non-Electric Toys
For those with dish-washers, small, non-battery-reliant toys are extremely easy to clean. Dish-washers can help you do all the cleaning in such case. Place the toys on the top rack of your dishwasher, and simply wash them with the normal detergent that you use for your machine!
Be careful with toys with small removable parts. You don’t want them flying around the dishwasher, damaging themselves and other items.
Large Items and Toys with Batteries
For toys with batteries or very large items, hand-washing is the best cleaning method. Remember to remove the batteries from the toys. Then use a cloth to gently scrub the toys with a soapy mixture.
Now let’s talk about how frequent these playthings need washing. Most of the time, giving them a weekly clean would be sufficient to guarantee a hygienic environment for your little one. However, if the kid from next door suddenly decides to put your child’s toys in her mouth, or if someone accidentally spills food on the toys, then it would be best to give the contaminated items an immediate wash. This way, your child can be guaranteed contamination-free play sessions which everyone looks forward to.
Feng Shui is an ancient Chinese philosophy that emphasises the importance of your surroundings in determining various aspects of your life, including your mental and physical health, success, relationships, and prosperity. Your home and how it is decorated are key to your life’s improvement.
The first step to increasing the flow of positive energy around your house is the removal of clutters. Through removing things that you do not use and making your home more spacious, you are removing obstacles that prevent chi from flowing freely around your residence. Moreover, as a byproduct of your de-cluttering labour, your house will look cleaner and tidier.
To introduce further positive energy into your home, allow your house to receive more fresh air and natural light. Make use of your windows, and open up your curtains a little bit more. Natural lights will help you see things more clearly, while also reducing the need to rely so much on electricity.
Mirrors, when positioned at the right area, can also introduce more brightness in your home. However, be careful that your mirrors do not reflect items that induce negative energy, such as rubbish bins.
If you are more daring or adventurous, consider changing your curtains’ colours or knocking down some walls for more window spaces. Let your creativity guide you. Now you’ll definitely see a larger change in your home.
To bring your home closer to nature, you can also plant some indoor trees. These extra decorations will not only help absorb toxins, but also bring nature closer to you and induce a feeling of peace and tranquility.
Similarly, fountains can induce positive energy in your home by bringing it closer to nature. Moreover, according to Chinese beliefs, flowing water symbolises an inflow of money into your life.
Beyond unity with nature, a Feng-Shui home should also promote the happiness of its owner. Your contentment can be affected by the locations of items in your home. Make sure that you have at least an object visibly placed in each room which raises your spirits. These could be your favourite paintings, pictures, or other items of sentimental value.
A particular space in your home that everyone should pay particular attention to is their bedroom. Bedrooms are for resting, and they should be furnished accordingly. Items which remind you of your obligations and worries should have no place in such a personal resting space. This means, for example, moving things from work to a different room.
Besides de-cluttering and redecoration, it is also important for broken things inside a house to be fixed or replaced. Allow no room for negative energy to remain in your home, and introduce some positive changes to your life.
The maintenance of positive energy in your home also means that cleaning is a very important part of sustaining a Feng-Shui house. Dust and hoover your home regularly to ensure freshness of your home’s air. Get rid of waste regularly to prevent the build-up of negative energy. Wipe, wash, spray, mop, and complete any other cleaning tasks that ought to be done. Just by doing these daily tasks, your home will already be on its way to attaining high positive energy and achieving overall balance.
One good advice on where you ought to store foodstuff in your kitchen is to follow what supermarkets do.
Besides this recommendation, there are a few factors every experts in food storage would consider when deciding where to place their food. These include food safety, smell, and food preservation.
Safety and Hygiene
To ensure that raw meat does not contaminate other items in the fridge, it’s highly recommendable that these raw items are stored at the fridge’s bottom shelf. This way, their juices’ drips cannot contaminate other food in the same fridge.
Peeled onions produce a horrible smell that penetrates through all parts of your fridge once they have been stored there for too long. Placing them in sealed boxes can reduce and delay the spread of their odour. However, there’s no better way of solving this problem than to consume them quickly before your fridge gets too smelly.
Leftovers left either in the fridge or the freezer should generally not remain in your kitchen for more than four days, although the exact number of days that different food can last for varies.
To ensure that you stick to this four-day rule, try to place new leftovers behind older ones. This way, you will be reminded to consume the older items first.
Beyond leftovers, leafy vegetables are best stored in your fridge’s vegetable drawers. Meanwhile, roots can happily stay outside your fridge for a significant amount of time. Just remember to keep them in dark places. Exposure to light makes these vegetables sprout faster.
Some food items are simply incompatible and should not be placed next to each other due to one’s effect on another. For example, fruits like bananas and avocados emit gases that cause vegetables to go bad early. Next time you consider putting all your fruits and vegetables inside your fridge’s vegetable storage box, you might, therefore, want to think twice.
So what do you think about all the tips in this article? Do you have other storage tricks that you want to share with others?
Half-term is coming soon, and many children will surely want to do something special with their parents during their February holiday period. Therefore, in this post, we think that it would be a great to share our top five family activities that parents could do with their child in London this winter half-term.
1. Orchids Festival
From 10th February to 11th March 2018, Kew Gardens is bringing back its Orchids Festival to London for the 23rd year. Explore the magnificent and colourful tropical flowers in one of London’s best parks. Give yourself a chance to walk in the outdoors with your children, and have an educational experience learning more about the flowers’ use in Thai medicine and culinary culture.
2. Chinese New Year
The Year of the Dog is arriving on the 16th February, and it promises to be a great one. Enjoy the vivid and jubilant festivities marking the beginning of the new lunar year in Leicester Square. Then try some Chinese dishes with your children at various food truck points and China Town. Why don’t you give your children an opportunity to try out the ancient Chinese art of calligraphy as well?
3. Outdoor Ice Skating
It may no longer be Christmas, but outdoor ice skating is still available in London. Head to Canary Wharf for a final opportunity to dance on ice with your children before winter officially ends. Glide through the ice rink’s new route through a park which has been designed for you to experience ice skating in the capital like never before.
4. Pancake Day
Celebrate Shrove Tuesday, or Pancake Day, on 13th February by teaching your children how to make delicious pancakes. If you feel a bit more adventurous, try having a family pancake bake-off competition of your own. May the best baker win!
The festival of love needs not be only for adults. Teach your child the importance of love and spend Valentine’s together sharing a memorable meal or making some heart-shaped decorations. Help promote their creativity while spending some quality time with them.
Having a tidy home can be a challenge when you have children running around with their toys all over the house. That time is the ideal time to show your kids that the house shouldn’t be messy and that they can do a lot about that. All they need is a little motivation and a reason to learn something more.
You are the head of the house
You child looks you with admiration because you are a hero in their eyes. You are making them meals, giving them kisses and hugs, making them happy or comforting them when they are sad. When they need something they go to you. That means that you are their role model and that means that they will copy you in everyday situations. Due to that, make sure that they observe you while you are cleaning the house and you will see that they will start to do the same with their toys.
Make a schedule for chores
It is easier to do chores when you develop a habit around them. Those chores can be a part of your daily routine, for example, before dinner. Choose one part of your day for chores and stick to it. It will help you organize the next day when you have a schedule, and it will help your children to adjust to the fact that they have to make time to help their parents with tidying up. You can also give each child something else to do, but that is completely up to you.
Show your child the importance of a tidy home
Before you can expect from your child to start cleaning, you have to talk about it. Show your child how the house is pretty and tidy when everything it where it has to be. You can start with the kid’s room since your children probably spend most of their time there. Teach your children how to put away their toys when they won’t play with them anymore and they will realize that you are right.
Start with simple chores
Allow your child to start from scratch. Offer help in cleaning the toys, then eventually move away and let your child do the work. When the toys are in their place, you can offer your child something more complicated, but still, focus on the room. That can be cleaning the dust or making the bed. Another easy chore is changing the pillowcase. It is important to start small.
You have to keep in mind that teaching your children how to be tidy is a process which will last for some time. The most important thing is that you have to make it a fun activity or they will run away from it like crazy. Remember, kids will be kids!
The post is made by Mark, a foosball player and a blogger who has a blog about foosball called the Foosball Zone. He has decided to get a mini foosball table for his kids, but with one condition. They have to learn how to maintain it. Now, after few weeks, his kids are playing on well maintained mini table football because they realize the importance of keeping their belonging in the best conditions.
Now that we’re in a new year it’s the ideal time to freshen things up in your home. You don’t have to spend fortunes as there is plenty that you can do yourself, including changing wall colours, moving things around and adding a few new furnishings. Let’s check how you can implement these small changes and a make a big difference in your home.
A splash of colour
Re-decorating is one of the best ways to completely change the look of your home, and you can do it yourself. Whether you want to freshen up your entire house, an individual room or just create a feature wall in your living room, a lick of paint can work wonders. Get some samples and try different shades out to see what you like and then get stuck in. Something that often puts people off painting is the lingering smell, but once you know how to get rid of paint smell you’ll be more than ready to get going.
Fresh soft furnishings
In the same way that painting a room can completely change its look, so can a new pair of curtains, a statement rug or cushions for the sofa. Again, it’s all about the colour and if you go for matching sets it can look very sleek and classic. Alternatively, mix it up with contrasting shades to create a quirkier look.
Reshuffle the room
Sometimes the biggest changes can take the least amount of time — a simple reshuffle of furniture can do just that. It might be moving the TV stand and sofa to the opposite corner of the room, re-orienting the dining table or switching the bed round so that it faces a different part of your bedroom. Whatever you do, the smallest tweak can completely change the flow and feel of any room.
Another change you can make is to hang some new pictures. Anything from a piece of fine art to framing a few of your favourite photographs can create a feature on any wall. You might not even need to buy new pieces; just like with furniture, a simple re-organisation can do the job.
The fine detail
As you can see, the above easy changes can have a big impact. There are plenty of other things you can do on an even smaller scale. These could include:
Adding a new lamp to alter the lighting in an area of the room.
Altering the power of your overhead lighting to soften or brighten the ambiance.
Fitting decorative door knobs to replace plain ones.
Up-cycling old furniture with a bit of paint or decoupage paper.
Putting up feature wallpaper.
These are a few small changes that can really freshen up the look of your home. Whether it’s redecorating with freshly painted walls and knowing how to get rid of paint smell, having a furniture reshuffle or hanging some new pictures, small changes can make a big difference.
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