Wednesday, July 31, 2013

No Vacuum? No Problem! (So Far)

As many of you may know, I do not have a vacuum. It broke about three months ago. Since I never used it very often anyway, I made it a goal to go one year without purchasing a new one. I want to see if I can do it. My great-great-grandmothers didn't have a vacuum. I want to experience what they experienced as they tried to keep their houses clean. In my three months without a vacuum cleaner, I have learned a few lessons:
  • Sweeping the floors/carpets becomes a daily chore. I sweep the entire house once daily, usually in the mornings. During the day, I spot sweep areas that I am working in. On the days when the house is full of people and activity, I swear the broom and carpet sweeper are glued to my hands. I didn't like doing this when I first started. Now, I find it only takes a few minutes to sweep in the mornings and spot sweeping only takes a few seconds. I adapted and it doesn't bother me at all now. 
  • Hand in hand with item #1 above, adjust your attitude on what a dirty floor looks like. I used to hate seeing dust bunnies on my floors. I would stop whatever I was doing to pick them up. (My husband tells me cleanliness is a compulsive behavior for me.) Not any more! Since I am sweeping every morning anyway, I know if I see a dust bunny during the day, it will be picked up in less than 24 hours as part of routine cleaning, so I leave it there! At first this was difficult to do. Having a busy schedule these past three months helped a lot. I didn't have time to focus on the dirt. Now, I may experience a few moments of stress as I walk by the dirt and dust, but I leave it there for the next mornings cleaning.
  • My Hoky carpet sweeper is wonderful! It picks up small wet spills as well as dirt, dust and hair. It even picks up heavier items like pennies that sometimes fall out of my husband's pockets! I researched many different types of sweepers and read all the customer reviews I could find before I bought this one!  I love it!! The Hoky works on both floors and carpets.
  • Beating the throw rugs is fun!  Really! It is a great way to remove any frustrations or stress you may have. Just throw over a chair, fence or clothesline, and whack away! Beating the rugs weekly and using the Hokey daily keeps them clean. When done weekly, it doesn't take more than a few minutes per rug.
  • Throw rugs on the carpet help to keep it clean. Putting throw rugs on the high traffic areas of your carpet do a great job of keeping them clean. If they won't stay put, use a little carpet tape.
  • Swiffer dry sweeping cloths are expensive. Too expensive to buy if you are using them daily. I can go through three or four in one morning! That includes turning it over and using the other side! Now, I use old socks that have lost their mate. I have a stack of them. (Where do those other socks go anyway?) All but the smallest socks slide over the Swiffer broom and work beautifully. Then, just toss in the wash.
  • Before electricity, animals were kept outside for a reason! It is quite difficult to keep up with the hair and dust pets make. To help keep the house clean, I could make Molly stay outside. However, if I did that I would deprive myself of the constant companionship and love she gives me. (She never leaves my side.) Besides, how can you say "No, you can't come back in." to this face.

At the three month point, I am happy with my results. The floors are clean (generally), Molly's allergies haven't flared up and now that I have adjusted to it, I don't think it takes that much time out of my day to go non-electric.

I will post another update at the six month mark!

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  1. For my Swiffer, I use old, stained washclothes, or I purchase the cheap 18 packs of them at the dollar store. They fit the Swiffer perfectly and have a little more oomph than the Swiffer clothes.

    1. Cheryl,

      What a great idea! I am going to save my old washcloths. And the next time I am out and about I will stop in the Dollar Store and buy some!

      Thank you for sharing your idea!


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