I have a serious love/hate relationship with spring cleaning. For the most part, my home stays fairly clean … until hockey season rolls around! Two of the kids and my husband all play hockey. We are running to practices, games, and tournaments constantly for a good five months or so. Oftentimes we have multiple games on the same day. This is the normal life of a hockey family. I learned quickly that with everything else I have going on, trying to keep everything up to par during hockey season results in exhaustion, so something had to give. That something was cleaning.

Don’t get me wrong, we still clean! We don’t live with flies buzzing around a sink full of dishes and we don’t have belongings covering every square inch of floor space! Not even close! The laundry tends to pile up and we have piles of “things to donate” stacking up. Our usual trips to the dump get put on hold and the cold tends to scare away the desire to open up some windows to let the chemical fumes of cleaners out, so we minimize using them. Lack of time at home results in the kids’ bedrooms getting a little out of sorts and the pile of movies the kids “put away” but didn’t actually put away has resulted in the leaning tower of Blu-ray discs. With one week of hockey left, it’s safe to say that it is time!

I have dug out a notebook and am getting ready to make a plan! For me, this will likely be a two- to three-week process since we still have one weekend of hockey ahead! Thankfully, everyone at our house gets on board and we have a pretty small home, so getting things done works pretty well (and since the kids helped clean, they are more willing to help keep it clean).

Aside from the usual picking up of belongings and reorganizing spaces, hauling things to donate or to recycle/throw away, and doing the ever-dreaded deep cleaning, and getting the yard all cleaned up, I am looking forward to making some changes to our cleaning habits this spring.

For starters, I am seriously considering different options for cleaning products. I can’t exactly tell you what that will mean for us, but I have looked into more natural options, including using vinegar or making my own cleaners — but I’m not quite sure if I’m there yet! I may settle for purchasing new cleaning products with lower chemical content that don’t smell too strong. My husband has decided that it is time to “Marie Kondo” everything and get rid of what isn’t being used or appreciated. (I’m not quite sure how the kids will react to that revelation!) I’m also looking into unique space solutions for very small kitchens and trying to think of creative solutions for outdoor storage that don’t look tacky. 

How do you approach spring cleaning? Have you done Marie Kondo-type purging? Which cleaning supplies do you like to use? If you have any brilliant ideas to address organizing our small spaces, feel free to send them my way! 

Wish me luck as we tackle “The Great Purge of 2021!”


Heather Kantrud is the Lifestyle reporter for the Fergus Falls Daily Journal.

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