The Super Busy Person’s Guide to Keeping Your House Clean

I started my new job last week and I am drowning! I know, I know I’m never satisfied. Either too busy or not enough! However, it hasn’t been a particularly smooth transition. But! I’m using my systems and we’re figuring it out!

Tonight, I want to share with you my newest system for keeping the house clean. I posted a while ago how I do a full clean of my house. Tonight, I want to share how you can keep your house clean when you quite simply don’t have time for anything. This system keeps my cleaning time to under 30 minutes a day and then I never have to take a whole morning to clean, which I just don’t have time for right now.

So, here’s how I do it!

DAILY: 

-make bed (in the morning)
-do the dishes from the day (evening)
-10 minute tidy
-one weekly chore
-one every other day chore

EVERY OTHER DAY CHORES: (do one of these every day. I do them in the morning.)

-wipe surfaces in bathroom
-wipe counter tops and surfaces in kitchen

WEEKLY CHORES: (do these once a week each)

-clean floors (swiff or vacuum)
-empty trash
-clean out fridge
-scrub toilet
-clean cat box (sub something else here if you need to!)
-change sheets and do laundry

MONTHLY CHORES: (do these once per month, ideally one each week)

-dust all surfaces
-clean baseboards
-mop floors
-clean windows and mirrors

 

And there you have it! This is how I keep things looking ship shape in my apartment. If I stay on top of it, it keeps my house looking pretty clean without taking up a huge chunk of my day!

 

Superhero Action of the Day: What would you add to this list? Did I leave any thing out? Let me know!

10 Products I’m loving for September

Sorry I’m a few days late with this!

But here we are with a list of things I’m loving as we go back to school and get into Fall weather!

As usual, I’m not getting paid for this, so you can be sure I actually love all of these things!

 

  1. All hail the almighty PSL. I am not as obsessed with Pumpkin as some people I know, but I do love pumpkin flavored coffee. Also, if you’re drinking it iced, try it with almond milk for a slightly different flavor! I don’t like the almond milk hot but cold it is excellent!
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    Pumpkin Spice Latte, Starbucks, $3-5
  2. The Backstagers

    I’m not a huge comic book person, but this is an adorable story about high school theatre- how could I not love it?? You can get digital versions from Amazon, or order it online from mycomicbookshop.com, but I recommend going down to a local shop and asking for it. If you’ve never been, it’s a great way to have an adventure AND support local business. 410464-_sx1280_ql80_ttd_

    The Backstagers, BOOM Publishing on Amazon, $2-6 an episode

  3. Neutrogena oil free pink grapefruit body wash. This stuff takes care of any body breakouts I get in a snap. Perfect for midwest weather that changes it’s mind all the time!
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    Neutrogena body wash, Amazon, $5.96

  4. Asics no show invasion socks If you know me, you know I’m not a huge fan of socks. However, these are my absolute favorite workout socks. I stumbled across them several years ago and they’re the best. Soft and cushy, my feet don’t feel too sweaty or hot and they come in both fun colors and black and white.

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    Asics No  Show Invasion Socks, Asics.com, $18 for six

  5. Oatmeal. Oatmeal is my go to breakfast right now. I’ll write up some of my favorite recipes sometime soon, but I love that you can make it hundreds of ways, it’s easy, pretty healthy and warm and comforting as we head into colder mornings.
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    Quaker Old Fashioned Oats, Amazon, $2.98

  6. Overdrive. Overdrive is an app that hooks up with your local libraries to provide you access to thousands of audiobooks, e-books and other stuff. It’s super easy to use and best of all, totally free!

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    Overdrive, App, Free

  7. Mint. I’ve been using Mint for several years, but I really feel like I’m starting to get the hang of it. Mint helps me manage my money, and with all of my freelance work, that’s more important than ever.
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    Mint, App, Free

    8. Moo.com. If you have to get stuff printed, I can’t recommend Moo.com enough. I recently got some stickers made for the etsy store, and everything about the experience was just so great. They’re made for small businesses, so I didn’t have to order 10,000, and the upload and design tools were very easy to use and accessible.

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    moo.com, printing company, prices vary

    9. ELF Instant Lift Brow Pencil. This crayon style pencil has a spoolie brush on the other end, making it perfect to fill in and come those brows into submission. Anyone who has taken my makeup classes knows I hate eyebrows, so making it these easy to deal with them is a plus! It isn’t as precise as some of the more expensive tools, but for this price, it’s still a steal. I get it in taupe.

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    ELF Instant Brow Pencil, Ulta Beauty, $2

    10. Vigo Black Beans and Rice. This was a staple in my house growing up, and I’ve gone back to them recently as I’ve been slow this summer. This is a cheap and filling dinner, without giving up on nutrition. And also, it’s bursting with flavor.

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    Vigo Black beans and Rice, Amazon, $15.50 for four

 

And that’s what I’ve got for this month! As always, I’d love to hear your suggestions for things to make life easier and more fun!

Set some Goals

Hi Supers!

Tomorrow is the first Monday of September! Can you believe it? I hope you enjoy it, whatever you are doing on Labor Day. As for me, I’ll be at my first official shift in my new job as the Costume Shop Manager at King’s Island, a local amusement park. Wish me luck!

But tonight, although it’s getting late and I’m still at school working, I wanted to take a few minutes and talk about setting goals.

If you don’t set regular goals, you probably should. I hope that’s not the first time you’ve heard that!

There are a ton of different ways to do it, but in the end it doesn’t matter a whole lot- as long as it works for YOU! But here are a couple of guidelines if you’re a little (or a lot) overwhelmed.

I like to start with categories. For example, I routinely set career, physical, mental, and emotional goals. Maybe you add school or relationship goals. Or financial goals. Whatever you need!

Then I like to put a BIG goal in all of the categories. Right now my BIG goals are:

Career/financial: Be able to comfortably full time freelance, pay off all debt before I turn 32 (includes student loans)

Physical: Be able to do an unsupported handstand and run 30 minutes non stop before the end of the year

Mental: Be fluent in another language with in three years(this one was hard!)

Emotional/ relational: maintain equilibrium during the current storm

 

These are all things I’m SUPER excited about. I WANT them- hopefully badly enough to really dedicate some time working towards them! Notice that most of them have a time limit or deadline attached. This is key! Otherwise it isn’t a goal, it’s a wish.

Once I have my BIG goals, I start subdividing. I do monthly and weekly goals, and then I set to do list items for the day to day.

So, for example, my monthly goals for September are:

Career/financial: launch my etsy store, write 15 blog posts

Physical: hit my step goal 5 out of 7 days per week, do at least ten minutes of yoga every day

Mental: read three books

Emotional/ relational: plan my weeks and stick to it

 

My weekly goals look like this:

 

Physical: Hit my step goal 5 out of 7 days, do at least ten minutes of yoga every day

Career and financial: close and ship the giveaway

Mental: read the 10 chapters of my book for the book club

Emotional/Relational: plan my week and stick to it

 

 

And there you have it! That’s how I set goals. When I do it consistently, I notice I’m WAY more productive, happier and much more focused!

 

Superhero action of the day: What are your goals? Are you achieving them?

How to Grocery Shop like Supergirl

Hi Superheroes! Happy Tuesday!

Today, we’re going to take a spin around my favorite grocery stores and see how we can make this regular task a little less… boring and awful.

To be fair, I don’t mind the grocery store. But I have a system (surprise!) that makes it pretty painless.

So let’s dig in!

First of all, make a plan. We’ve already talked about meal planning. That’s definitely how I make my grocery list. If I’m really on top of my game, I even organize my list by type of item, if not by department of the store. Once you’ve got your list, you can feel confident in what you need to get, and it’s easier to keep interlopers out of your cart!

Choose a time that doesn’t suck. There are times when the grocery store is more crowded. My recommendation is to avoid the store at those times. For me, that means I avoid the store like the plague from 5-7 pm on weekdays and completely on Saturdays. It just isn’t worth it. My favorite times are mid afternoon weekdays, evenings or Sunday afternoons.  Really, the less people in the store, the happier you’ll be. That also means you avoid upcoming holidays if at all possible, in case that wasn’t obvious.

Eat a snack before you go. You ever go to the grocery store hungry? And then you get to the checkout and you’ve spent $50 more than you intended and you get home and you just can’t understand how those donuts, cheetos or beer ended up in your kitchen. This is solved by eating before you go! Grab a kind bar or some beef jerky and get your shop on. On that same note, take a drink with you! I usually have water or club soda, but I’ve been known to pick up a drink at that super handy Starbucks kiosk in the front of my store when I need a pick me up.

Use headphones. My distraction of choice is almost always audiobooks, but good upbeat music works well too! Not so loud that people can’t get your attention if they need it- but enough to put you in a good mood!

Shop the outside of the store. This is an oldie but a goodie: nothing good happens in the inner aisles of the Grocery Store. Stick to the outer edges and avoid the treacherous ice cream and cookie aisles.

And as a bonus tip, find a grocery store you really like, but also one that is convenient for you. For example, I love Trader Joe’s… but the nearest one is a full 20 minute drive in the opposite direction of anything else I do. So I mostly shop at Kroger, which I like better than Meijer, and is more in my price range than Whole Foods.

And there you have it! 6 tips to make grocery store trips less painful! I hope this helps you out there!

Superhero Action of the Day: What’s your favorite Grocery Store? Why?Leave me a comment or let me know by using #Superheroliving on social media!

 

5 ways to fight muscle soreness

Oh, my superheroes. Yesterday was leg and booty day at the gym.

I tried a new workout.

And today, I might be dead. Seriously, my glutes and my quads huuuuuuuuuurt.

We’ve all been there, right? Whether it’s workout recovery, aftermath from a hard day of moving or something else, we’ve all had sore muscles. So today we’re looking at some ways to combat muscle soreness! Ready/? Here we go!

  1. Foam Rolling. If you haven’t tried a foam roller, you definitely should. It hurts like crazy, I won’t lie to you. It’s part of my workout tonight, and I can’t really say I’m looking forward to it. But it helps a LOT. It works by breaking up lactic acid pockets in your muscles. I think. Science was never my strong suit. Anyway, foam rolling. Check it out.
  2. Take a bath. Warm baths are better, although you might see ice baths in the movies. Add some epsom salts for extra soothing power!
  3. MOVE. Take a walk. Integrate some low impact cardio. Do some stretching. I know it will hurt. But you’ll feel better after! I promise!
  4. Make sure you’re hydrated! Drink plenty of water, your muscles will thank you for it!
  5. Drink some caffeine. I know it seems counter intuitive, but caffeine helps your muscles recover!

 

So there you have it, friends! Some ways to fight soreness for my superheroes!

 

Superhero Action of the Day: What are your favorite ways to get rid of soreness. Let me know!

4 ingredient pineapple smoothie- www.superheroliving.blog

OMP: 4 ingredient pineapple smoothie

Happy Sunday, superheroes! I hope you’ve had amazing, refreshing, restful, adventurous, SUPER weekends.

And now it’s Sunday! If you’re back to the grind tomorrow, YOU CAN DO IT! If you’re less scheduled right now, like me, let’s try to do some productive, healthy stuff this week! Ok? OK! Go team!

This afternoon, Penelope and I went for a long walk. It’s a route we do fairly regularly, but usually first thing in the morning, not at 5 pm. Anyway, when we got about 2/3 of the way home, I started dreaming of something cool and refreshing to drink when I got home. Milkshake…nah. Ice cream run? I really don’t need to do that… Water? Let’s be real, only as a last resort. (I’m not a good water drinker, unfortunately!)

But! I had frozen pineapple, and I just new I could do something with that.  And sure enough, it worked out exactly right for a cold refreshing drink. I started with a cup of water in my blender, and added about 2 cups of frozen pineapple. I started blending that together and then added about 1/2 cup of milk. I’m out of almond milk currently, but I think if I were going to recreate it, I would use 1 1/2 cups of almond milk instead of water and dairy milk. Once I got it all blended together, I added about 2 tsp. of honey, and about a TB of lemon juice. I blended that in a little bit, poured it in a glass and drank up.

It’s sweet, a little tangy, bursting with pineapple flavor, and best of all, really pretty healthy and low calorie! Enjoy!

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4 ingredient pineapple smoothie:

1 1/2 cups of almond milk (or milk of your choice!)

2 cups frozen pineapple chunks

2 tsp. honey

1 TB lemon juice (to taste)

 

Blend together all ingredients until smooth. Pour into tall glass and enjoy! Makes about 24 ounces.

 

Superhero Action of the Day: What’s your favorite summer beverage? Let me know so I can try it out!

clean house

Today, we’re being a little less thought provoking, and a little bit more practical and helpful.

Today, I cleaned my apartment. If you don’t know, I live in about 550 square feet, so I’m not exactly an expert on keeping a giant house clean. But, here’s what I do every week for base levels of cleanliness- and in what order. When I do things this way, it takes me about 2 hours or so to get my place in fine running order, and then I can go about my day!

So, here we go:

FIRST: I collect all of the dirty dishes, put them in the sink, fill the sink with water and soap, and leave those bad boys to soak. For a while.

After I start the dishes, I spend a few minutes in the kitchen. I start by putting a small bowl of half white vinegar and half water in the microwave and turning it on for about 2 minutes. During those two minutes,  I finish cleaning off the kitchen counters- trash, recycling, put things away, etc. When the microwave goes off, I place the bowl on the counter, and use paper towels to wipe out the microwave. I use the warm water from the microwave to wipe down the counters and the outside of the fridge. I check and see if there are things in the fridge that need tossed, and then I haul trash and recycling to the trash can. IMG_1325

Then, I move on to the bathroom! I put things away, first, and then use some all purpose cleaner to spray down the tub, sink and the outside of the toilet. I shake my rug out (usually out the window). I replace towels as needed. I scrub the toilet and reapply the scrubbing bubbles gel stamp thingy.

Bedroom is next. I make the bed first. And then I get any laundry that needs put away folded. I dust off dressers and clean off bed side tables. I put away jewelry that’s sitting out, and tuck any loose shoes back into their cubbies. IMG_1293

Living room is next. I deal with mail and clutter, I fold couch blankets and fluff pillows. Then I clean out the cat box and throw out the dirty litter. While I’m at it, I make sure all of my trash cans are empty. IMG_1103

Next up, floors. I use my swiffer almost exclusively. I start in the kitchen again, and I do all of my floors. Sometimes it takes more than one pass for me. Fur is a real problem around here!

Now, last step! You didn’t forget about those dishes, did you? Wash those dishes up right quick, and then wipe down the sink.

There, not so bad, right? Now you can get on with your day in a sparkling clean house! Have fun!

DIY Stick surtain rods- www.superheroliving.blog

DIY: Stick Curtain Rods

Tonight I have a decorating tutorial for you. About a month ago, I made new curtain rods for my living room, and tonight, I want to talk you through the how-to!

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Ready? Let’s go.

First of all, I found this stick well over a year ago while I was walking in the neighborhood one night. It turned out to be almost exactly 8 1/2 feet long, which was perfect. I got the idea from a house I used to house sit for, and I’ve loved it ever since. When I found that stick, it seemed like a match made in heaven. I traipsed home with the stick, squirreled it away, and started thinking about curtains for my living room.

Here was my problem: I couldn’t decide what I wanted for curtains. I’d talked about purple, mostly for the pop of color, but I couldn’t even find any fabric I was really in love with. And curtains, yikes, they’re SO expensive. Yeesh. So I worked on that, off and on, for about a year.

And then, one day in April, I went to Target. And I don’t know about you, but I ALWAYS look at the endcaps in my Target stores. That’s where the clearance stuff turns up, and well, you just NEVER KNOW. Sure enough, on this fortuitous day, there were four soft gold curtain panels. And because they were a return, Target wanted $8.37 each for them. I swear I’ve never put anything in my cart so quick in my life. I mean. EIGHT DOLLARS. You can’t buy the fabric for that much. So, I brought them home, and about a month ago, I finally made the curtain rods to hang them on.

They add a lot of warmth and softness to my room, and they look really nice. And the curtain rod makes the kind of formal curtains a little more easy going and funky, which is right up my eclectic decor alley.

I started by collecting some more supplies. After a little bit of pinterest based research, I went off to the hardware store and picked up some medium grit sandpaper, some clear coat spray, some large cup hooks and some clip on curtain rings. IMG_1512

Then, I came home and got to work. First, I measured my stick and my windows. Then, using a sharpie, I carefully marked on the stick where I needed to cut the stick- it was actually right in half for me, but it will depend on the length of your stick. Then, I used a small hand saw I borrowed from my mother, and I cut the stick in half. It wasn’t hard- my stick was only about an inch thick, so no big deal. I did most of this outside, obviously, because of fumes and/or mess. IMG_1513

Once I had two sticks, I grabbed my sandpaper. I got lucky in that this piece of wood was already really dry and almost all of the bark was off it, so I didn’t have too much trouble with this step. However, you want to remove the bark and make sure the piece is really, really dried out before you do this. That gives anyone catching a ride time to get out before you put a piece of nature in your house. IMG_1514

So, I sanded it down, nice and smooth, especially on the ends. I double checked the width of the stick against my cup hooks, and put a notch in the thickest end and sanded that out really well. When I was content with the smoothness of the sticks, I sprayed all sides of the sticks with my clear coat. I followed the directions on the can for this, and it was pretty easy. I ended up doing about three coats, and waited a little while in between coats- maybe about a half hour in between each coat.

I got the curtains out of the package and ironed them. Not my favorite, but definitely necessary in this case! Then I did some measuring and marking on my walls. I chose to hang my curtains considerably higher than my window trim. I did this for a couple of reasons. For one thing, it makes the windows look bigger in your room. For another thing, when I measured I realized my clearance curtains were too long for my room. Oops! I’ve got a plan for that, but I haven’t done it yet. In the end, I hung the  curtain rods as high as I could without moving the furniture to stand on it. See my special short people standing device? IMG_1515

It took some elbow grease to get the hooks into the walls, but I figure that means they aren’t likely to come out easily, right? Don’t forget that your hooks need to be closer together than the lengths of your sticks so you can support the stick properly!

Then I just clipped the curtains onto the rings and wiggled them onto the sticks. Easy peasy. I put the stick through the cup hooks, and voila! I was all done. Because I didn’t want to lose the light in my living room, I cut two vintage belts from South America that someone had given me in half, and, using 4 more smaller cup hooks I had left from another project, I made some easy (and very eclectic) tie backs.

I was pretty pleased with the result- and the best part was, all totaled up, it only cost me about $50. Not bad, when some of the curtain panels I was looking at would have cost me about that per window before hardware!

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Superhero action of the day: Is it time to freshen up the decor in your living space? Maybe take a look at what you have. Can you use it in a different way somehow?