Monday, April 8, 2013

Dramatically change a room with some paint

I am not sure about your house but in ours I have a lot of rooms I would like to change. One of the easiest ways to change the look of a room is by paint. The room I decided to tackle first was our guest bedroom.
Take a look at the before:

See that pillow on the bed? This was my inspiration.

First thing you need to do before painting is clear out the area you would like to paint and put something on the floor to protect it. I chose to use a drop cloth. 

Then gather all supplies. You do not want to have to run back and forth from the room to your garage (or the store) when your in the middle of painting. 

Here is one of my favorite tools to use for painting. It is a Shur-Line Edger. I have the one that has rollers along the top and you can replace the pad for future uses. I have tried the one without the rollers and I prefer this one. You can find these at your local home improvement center. 

Next: more prep. If you have any outlets on the wall you are painting, you will want to remove the covers. I recommend turning off the electricity for this outlet before you do this and keep it off until you are done painting. 

And time for the color: 

When painting, I have always been told to edge then roll. I personally do both simultaneously so the the edging doesn't dry up before I get to the rolling. If you have someone helping you, this process may be easier. 

And here is the end product! We have a lot of work still left to do in the room but at least we have started. The wall definitely makes a big change and huge impact on the room.  

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Get rid of those carpet stains!

Every house has its main traffic areas but some are worse than others. This last weekend I went to help one of my girlfriends clean her house. She just moved in with her boyfriend and they currently live in a rental. The upside to a rental is they are saving money for their own house but the downside is the carpet was ruined! Just plain gross. When she told me she wont walk around in the house without socks on, I knew something had to be done.

Here are a few before pictures of what the carpet looked like: Please keep in mind that this carpet has been through the worst (multiple roommates and a lot of parties)

So here are the ingredients you need:
1. Castile Soap
2. Hydrogen Peroxide
3. Spray bottle or bucket

Here is the Castile soap I used. The good thing is that you can get these with different scents. We chose peppermint because it smells clean (and I already had some extra)

I have found that the best way to use these two ingredient is to combine a  half and half solution in a spray bottle. If you don't have an empty spray bottle on hand, you can also combine in small bucket or bowl and pour directly onto stain. 

Helpful hint: Don't throw away spray bottles from cleaners that have run out. Clean them out and put aside for when you need them at times like these.

Once you have a half and half combination, spray area thoroughly and let soak for 2-5 minutes. Grab a scrub brush and scrub. then scrub some more. and if you still want to pull more dirt up, scrub again. 

Before and after of one spot:

Here is another spot we treated using this method: We believe this stain is spilled ash from the fireplace that had never been cleaned up

Once you are done scrubbing, just let it dry as if you had used a carpet cleaning machine. I don't recommend walking on it when wet. If there is to much liquid, you can always use some towels to soak it up so it will dry faster. 

Hope it works as well for you as it did for us!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Dust all the baseboards in your house with ease!

So if you haven't figured it out yet, we have a very old home. This means lots of dust, lots of things to fix and me trying to figure out how to do it all. One of the things in houses that I believe is often forgot about is your baseboards. I bet if you haven't cleaned your baseboards recently that there is a large amount of dust built up on them. They may not seem that important but they help greatly with keeping your house clean and looking great. I clean mine about once a month and wanted to share my method with you. Its quick, easy, involves no spray bottles or even cleaning wipes. 

So what is it I do? I use Dryer sheets. The reason I use these is that they pick up dust magnificently and also leave the baseboards clean. I have also convinced myself that less dust settles on the baseboards due to the dryer sheets but I have no proof of that. 

So here are my baseboards. I took this picture from baseboards that are behind a bench in our entry way to help with showing how easy it is.

Here is what they look like with just one swipe of my dryer sheet. Take a look at the picture on the right, notice how it is very dusty on the left and not on the right. So much better than before!

And here is what they look like when they are done!

Now I challenge you to go through your house with your dryer sheets and clean your baseboards! Try and use as many clean surfaces on the dryer sheets to get the best results. While your at it, you can also use this method to clean the ledges in your doors all around your house.

Here is a before:

And here is an after:

Hope this helps cut down your cleaning time! I know it has with my house, plus I have found it to be very easy and effective, hope you do too! 

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Clean your stove vents

I must say, I never expected to see so much grime and grease come off those vents. This is one of my absolute favorite ways to clean because it is so easy. I stumbled across this method here at One Good Thing by Jillee and have been hooked ever since. 

So here are my filters before: GROSS! you can see the amount of build up of grease and grime. The thought of that sitting over my food while cooking truly made me cringe. 

There are two things you will need, a big pot and some baking soda. One VERY VERY important note: If you have non-stick pots and pans, you will need to borrow or buy a stainless steel pan. I purchased one to keep and use for just cleaning purposes. 

Bring your large pot of water to a boil. once it is at a rolling biol, add some baking soda. Sorry for not having an exact measurement but it depends on how much water you have used. Don't be alarmed but your water is going to fizz. You want this! Slowly add your baking soda so it does not fizz right over the top of your pot. If it is not fizzing, add more baking soda. Grab a pair of tongs and lower your filters into your pot. 

 You can see in these pictures that the water is fizzing and the grease start to come off. 

I decided to just drop mine in and let them sit for about 60 seconds. It was easy for me to do that because I have very small filters in my stove vent. If yours is large, you may have to do half then turn it around and do the other half. 

See all the grease! Yuck!

So now that one is done, here is a look of the before and after. They look brand new! And now I can have peace of mind with knowing that these are not sitting over my food while I am cooking. Plus I imagine that the grease and grime may cause unnecessary odors in your house. 

For the second filter, I did not bother emptying out the water. I just added more baking soda to get that fizz and dropped it in. And after all is done, they are both looking like new and are perfectly clean!

Now your pot is going to look a little worse for ware but its easy to clean. The grime doesn't stick to the edges very well and should come off fairly easy. I do recommend that you pour this gross water in the backyard somewhere that isn't easily accessible to pets or children. I only say this because I didn't want to pour the grease down my drains and have it coat my pipes. Its up to you on how you would like to get rid of this water, please do not pour it in the gutter or anywhere that isn't recommended by your local authorities.

Well that's it! From start to finish it took me less than 10 minutes! Hope yours goes as easy as mine did!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Miracle Grout Cleaner!

Oh the grout!
And boy do we have a lot of it! Like every other household, we have main traffic areas and these areas have become very dirty. Our guest bathroom grout became embarrassing  So it was time to fix it. After much research and a lot of pinning, I came up with the best solution for our house.
Inside the spray bottle is a half and half solution of water and vinegar. The baking soda was around $2 and vinegar was $2.50 (really big bottle). You don't have to purchase a spray bottle but can reuse one from a cleaning solution that ran out. 
Step 1: Sprinkle baking soda into grout lines
Step 2: Spray vinegar solution on top. It is going to bubble and fizz which is exactly what you want.
Step 3: Scrub. It doesn't take a lot of scrubbing to get all the dirt up. I just used an old toothbrush. 
Step 4: Wipe up or mop up all the dirty leftovers.
Step 5: Optional. We decided to seal our grout with a basic grout sealer for our local home improvement store. Just make sure to follow the manufacturer instructions. 

 So here is picture of our bathroom grout before:

And here it is after:

So to my own surprise, our grout was white! We bought the house two years ago and it has always been a cream'ish color. We have done basic washes but never tried this method before. Talk about getting it clean! 

Replace your bathroom vanity

I can not stand my old bathroom vanity! It's old, the drawers don't open, and is WAY too short! 32 inches tall means that every time I need to wash my face I have to fully bend over. Much more than I would with a normal vanity. What that also means is that my husband basically has to crouch to wash his face and brush his teeth. Its not good, in fact its very inconvenient. Finally fed up with what we had, we were determined to replace it. Take a look at our old vanity:
Long story short, we were wandering around IKEA one day when we found a clearance section. That's right, IKEA has a clearance section. This is where they put everything from the store that has been damaged or replaced by a newer model. In the back corner of this section was a beautiful bathroom vanity (with no top) that had a small scratch on it on the right hand side. If you look at the picture above, you will notice that the right side of the vanity is up against a wall. Talk about a major score. We got our new vanity for 62.5% off of the original price. We proceeded to immediately buy it and pick out a sink to go with it. Home we go to demolish, and let me say, so much frustration was taken out on that poor miniature vanity! See how far my husband has to bend over with that vanity!

So once we had everything out, we marked our studs. The reason you want to mark your studs is that you need something very sturdy to attach your new vanity to. Attaching your vanity to just drywall is not a good idea. We do not own a stud finder. Why? Because we use magnets. When building a house, drywall has to be screwed into the studs using metal screws. With something as simple as a strong magnet, you can find your studs. The black dots on the picture below, those are our studs. 
Now for the hard part, plumbing. We have very hard plumbing in our house. Its old and we have galvanized pips of an unusual size. If you don't know how to do plumbing, call a plumber. Last thing you want is to ruin your beautiful new vanity. My husband and I decided to do this ourselves. I will spare you the gory details but it was awful. The good part was that almost all parts were included with our sink from IKEA.

Next you need to mount your vanity to the wall. PLEASE make sure you level your vanity. Do not just screw it into the studs and hope that everything will be ok. Use a level, I recommend two. One for side to side and one for front to back. Now go ahead and dry fit your top making sure everything looks the way you want. Once it is dry fit, remove it from the vanity. You need to seal the top using a caulk/sealant. Apply a bead of sealant all the way around the top edge of your vanity and then place the vanity directly on top. Do not scoot it back and forth. Try and place it straight down on top. Give small wiggle but that's it. Once everything is sealed and you just have to connect your water lines and your ready to show it off.

This is by no means an easy project but you will love your results. It not only improved the functionality of the room for us but updated the look of the bathroom. Next project for the bathroom: replace the old ceiling fan. 


Welcome to The Everyday Cinderella! Thank you so much for reading my first post on my brand new blog!  This is all very new and exciting for me. I am hoping that you will have patience with me as I go through learning what it is blogging is about. Even though I am an avid reader of blogs, I have never done one myself. 

So what is this blog about? Hmm... good question. The plan is to post articles about all the little tips and tricks I have learned along the way. I am obsessed with learning how to make my life easier through cleaning tips, beauty tricks, and everything housekeeping. My hope is that some of these things that I have learned (and will learn) will help make your life easier. It probably would help if you knew my definition of housekeeping: it includes decorating, house improvements, gardening, cleaning, cooking, organizing, etc. Pretty much if it involves your life at home, it is included in my definition of housekeeping. So to keep this short, I hope you take some time to explore and find some of the things in this blog useful!