Are you familiar with “Hints from Heloise?”
Heloise gained popularity a bit before my time, but a quick summary is that she’s a writer/columnist who took over a syndicated column from her mom in 1977—"Hints from Heloise”—in which she dispenses lifestyle tips and hints on everything from travel and pets to home improvement.
She also has an editorial gig in Good Housekeeping, so basically she’s like Martha Stewart without a mug shot or an empire.
Anyway, if I were ever given a column, it would be a more bastardized “Dear Abby meets Carrie Bradshaw” type thing than Heloise, as I am no domestic diva.
But I do have my own house, and even if it often plots against me, I’ve learned a thing or two.
Hints from a Domestically Disabled Diva
If you read nothing else, the most important thing I can tell you is this: It’s easier to throw away and replace a mini-blind than to actually clean the one you have.
They have created cleaning items specifically for this job—I have one myself—and although they help, you still end up inventing new combinations of profanity that neighbors with young children will not appreciate.
Bonus hint: The same goes for shower curtain liners.
Buy a $5 liner from Target—and ONLY the shower curtain liner, not $80 worth of other things you didn’t go there intending to buy—and simply cut it off the hooks when it’s time to change it. Trying to open and close the hooks to take off the old liner when you already have to open and close the hooks to put one on will take years off your life.
Just cut it off and cut your losses.
True story: I had a roommate when I lived in Detroit that simply bought a new vacuum cleaner when it was time to change the bag on the one he had, only because he didn’t want to have to change the bag.
I don’t recommend this, but I kind of understand.
But bagless vacuums help, but aren’t necessarily the answer. I have one with a cool light on the front of it and everything, but emptying the container causes a bigger mess than what I just sucked up. As a result, I pull out the dust buster to suck the dust up, only to face the same situation in emptying the dust buster.
I don’t have a solution for this one other than to NOT empty either container the same day you vacuum. At least you can feel like the house is clean for a few hours.
Due to the fact that I eat a lot of vegetables—namely steamed broccoli at least once a day—my house has the potential to smell like I eat a lot of vegetables.
Delicious? Yes. Delightfully fragrant? Not so much.
I light incense right before I eat to combat this aroma. True, I usually forget that I lit incense and freak out five minutes later thinking something is burning in my kitchen, but at least is smells nice once I recover from my panic attack.
But my absolute favorite thing?
Glade Water Blossoms spray.
I have never smelled water blossoms so I don’t know if I’m being ripped off or not, but I don’t care. It’s delightful.
It’s A Wash
When it comes to laundry, well, I don’t really have any great hints. The time spent folding clean laundry only to unfold it and hang it up is time that could be spent shopping for a new mini blind or doing anything else. My only hint is to buy clothes that never need to be ironed.
We’ve covered this before, but I currently have a pair of cute pants I haven’t worn in months simply because they need to be ironed and my ironing board is better suited for a Keebler Elf.
The only upside to laundry—aside from clean clothes and the pleasure my OCD takes in cleaning the lint tray on the dryer—is that if you slip on a fabric sheet dropped on your kitchen floor, you instantly turn into something that resembles a manic figure skater having a seizure.
It’s quite impressive.
So there you go.
I have many more hints and tips I could dispense, but I don’t want to overload your brain with too much valuable information in one post. Perhaps I will present a sequel in the future. You know, if the whole bastardized “Dear Abby meets Carrie Bradshaw” –type column thing doesn’t pan out.
Because sorry guys. If offered syndication, you can bet I’ll take it and run with it. Unless of course it requires writing about coordinating throw pillows.
In which case, I’m screwed.
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