One of my biggest challenges of transitioning to a Stay at Home Mom was going to be keeping the house clean and in order. I love a clean house, but I’m not the best at knowing what needs cleaned or how to clean it.
When my mom tried to teach me these things growing up, I vividly remember telling her that I didn’t need to know how because I would have a “maid” when I grew up. (I liked the Brady Bunch and figured everyone should have an Alice.) She laughed and said, “I hope you can.”
So now I’m pretty clueless on how to clean.
Thankfully, I came upon a planner that breaks down household tasks for each day, week, and month. Since I have an unhealthy obsession with being able to check off items on a to-do list, I knew this would be perfect.
I whizzed through the tasks for Monday and Tuesday and felt very accomplished. Today I looked at the planner and just saw a few items: clean the cooktop and oven; clean out the toaster crumb tray; and clean the bathroom mirrors, sinks, and countertops.
No problem! I thought. Drew is actually home sick today so the light task load would be good.
Then I realized that “clean the oven” didn’t mean wipe off the outside of the oven. It meant clean the inside of the oven, too.
Hmm. I thought. I have lived in this home for almost 4 years and I’ve never cleaned the oven. Matt used the self-clean function a couple of years ago but that was it. How in the world do I clean an oven?
One thing I do know. I want to use non-toxic household cleaners as much as possible, and I remembered reading about cleaning an oven using baking soda and vinegar on the Live Renewed blog I followed.
Using what she did as a starting point, I decided to do something similar. I couldn’t spray baking soda and water on the dirty spots for days on end because my planner said I had to clean the oven today. 🙂 So I sprinkled baking soda over the oven and covered it with a spray mixture of vinegar, water, and citrus essential oils I use for everyday cleaning. Then I turned the oven to 300 and when it heated, I turned it off.
Taking the abrasive side of a sponge, I started scrubbing. I was amazed at how easily most of the caked-on spots came off. I had to do it a few times, and while I was working, Alyssa decided she wanted to come help. I gave her a rag and let her wipe. And wipe. That’s the great thing about cleaning with non-toxic ingredients! My 2-year-old daughter can “help” without being exposed to harsh chemicals.
Not all of the spots are gone (they’ll take some more applications), but I’m very happy with the results. I have a [mostly] clean oven, Alyssa and I had some Mommy-daughter
cleaning bonding time, and I checked a big item off my daily planner.