Nowhere is it more important for parents to provide a safe, clean environment than in the kitchen. Since it’s the heart of the home, you want it to be serene and comfortable, as well as sanitary since that’s where most meals are prepared and eaten.

If you’re a busy parent, you may worry that you haven’t taken the time to properly sanitize the kitchen. But don’t fear. With these quick solutions you can catch up on cleanliness and keep it that way.

Start with an easy formula for a basic kitchen cleaning product that can be used on countertops and appliances. Mix the ingredients and pour it into a standard-sized spray bottle that you can use for quick cleanups after every meal. Fill the bottle with water (not quite to the top). Add a quarter-cup of bleach, shake and spray the areas that need cleaning. Let it sit for a minute and then wipe it down using a clean cloth. Rinse the cloth and wipe down the area again.
If you don’t remember the last time you replaced your kitchen sponge, throw it out. After that, wash the sponge regularly to kill the bacteria and viruses it has picked up. Rinse the sponge with clean water and while it’s still wet, put the sponge in the microwave. “Cook” the sponge for two minutes on high. After it has cooled down, it will be clean to use again. (Be sure the sponge is wet when you put it in the microwave. A dry sponge can catch fire.) You can also sterilize the sponge by soaking it in a solution of one teaspoon bleach in one cup of water. Soak it for five minutes and then wring it out.

When it comes to caring for your floor, there are some helpful tips for mastering mopping. Vacuum or sweep the floor before you mop. If not, the dry dirt becomes mud when water is introduced. It will also cut down on the amount of rinsing you need to do. If you’re using a string mop, flip over the mop often so you’re using a clean side. If it’s a standard sponge mop, you will have to rinse it more often. Sometimes a quick mopping using just plain water is sufficient. But once a month or so, use a prepared floor cleaner. Follow the directions carefully because too much can leave a residue that will attract dirt. And make sure you mop over the surface twice. The first time will apply the cleaner to the floor. Leave it there for a minute or so to soften the dirt as you work on another area. When you go back the second time, the dirt will be softer and easier to clean. Rinse your mop often or you will be spreading the dirt instead of getting rid of it.

If you have a stainless steel sink in your kitchen, clean it daily. Do not use acid-based or abrasive products. Use a soft sponge and a window cleaner or other all-purpose cleaner on the sink. If you want to make your own cleaner, combine vinegar and water in a spray bottle and go to work. You can also try a mixture of baking soda, which is particularly effective on spots and stains. In an 8-ounce measuring cup, mix two teaspoons of baking soda and fill water to the top. Once the baking soda has dissolved, dip a sponge in the fluid and clean the sink using small circular motions. Rinse thoroughly when you’re finished or the baking soda may leave a residue.

And once a day, use the cleaning solution to wipe down the refrigerator handle. This is one spot that the cook handles, as well as the rest of the family when they open the fridge to see what’s to eat. So wipe it down and don’t let the germs grow.

To help you get caught up on your kitchen cleaning, assign yourself one major cleaning project each week. For instance, on week one clean out the toaster, shaking out the crumbs and wiping down the surface. Another week, move everything off the counter tops and thoroughly clean them, as well as anything you leave out regularly like canisters of sugar or flower. Another week, spend an hour and wash the grease that has accumulated on the front of the kitchen cabinets. If they’re pretty sticky, use a wood cleanser. Another day, vacuum out your cabinets and wipe down the shelf paper.

Finally, you’ll want to thoroughly clean your refrigerator and oven at least twice a year. For the fridge, mix three tablespoons of baking soda to 32 ounces of warm water. This mixture will clean and freshen the refrigerator. If you don’t have a self-cleaning oven, scrape off the baked on food with a scraper or use an all-purpose oven cleaner.

By dedicating just a little bit of time each week for kitchen cleaning, you can keep your family safe and make your home into the pleasant retreat that it should be.

Author's Bio: 

Get Organized provides you with tips and tools to help you organize your home, office, and any other area that needs organization.

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