Old fashion cleaning tips

I have to admit I like being a homemaker and I love to clean my home the old fashion way! There is only one job I am not too fond of, and that is dusting! Right now my granddaughters are young enough that I have made a game out of dusting, so until they get old enough to know they are helping me with my homemaker job they do it for me.

homemaking the old fashion way

For me I do not look at homemaking as endless hours of drudgery, I see it as a domestic art that I enjoy!

As a housewife I take pride in keeping my home fresh and sparkling clean. I thought it might be interesting to do some research and find out what women of our past used to keep their homes clean. What amazed me in my research about homemaking the old fashion way was that many of the things they used to clean involved no chemicals or harsh detergents.

I found many of these old fashion cleaning tips in the book, “My Favorite Yankee Miracles” by the editors of Yankee Magazine.

homemaking the old fashion way

  • Window washing – When you are drying freshly washed windows use vertical strokes on the outside and horizontal strokes on the inside. That way if you leave any streaks you can tell if they are in the inside or outside.
  • Wall washing – Add 1 tablespoon of baking soda and a mild soap like Ivory liquid to a pail of warm water.
  • Grease spills on wooden floors – Pour cold water on it right away. The grease will congeal before it has time to penetrate the wood.
  • Furniture wax – Shoe polish is a wonderful way to wax wooden furniture. Shoe polish makes an excellent touch-up for covering nicks and scuffs on your furniture.
  • Dusting – Pour 1/4 cup lemon oil (found at hardware stores) into 1 pint of hot water in a bucket. Soak four- or five pieces of cheesecloth squares in the mixture. Wring out the cheesecloth and hang them in a cool, dry place for 24 hours. These make perfect pre moistened dusting cloths.
  • Spilled candle wax – To remove candle wax from woodwork put ice cubes in a plastic bag and hold against the melted wax. Once the wax is frozen it will be easy to scrape or chip off.
  • Polishing silver – Stand silver in an aluminum pot and fill to cover with boiling water. Add a heaping tablespoon of baking soda. Always test this method on a small piece of silver before proceeding. Do not use on silver that has a lacquer coating.
  • Cleaning brass – Paint on a good layer of ketchup and let sit overnight. Wash and dry to a nice shine.
  • Clean toilets – Pour 1/4 cup of bleach in the toilet and let sit for 15 minutes. Scrub the inside of the bowl with an ordinary toilet brush before flushing away.
  • Deodorize a garbage can – Wash it with a solution of 1/2 cup borax and a bucket of warm water. After can is washed, and dry sprinkle borax in the bottom of the garbage can to fight odors.

Growing up a never remember buying cleaners from the grocery store.

We always had bleach, borax and Murphy’s Oil Soap, and that is all we ever used. To this day I still do not buy cleaners and the only thing I use more of than what my mother did was baking soda. I use that in all my cleaning from bathrooms to my kitchen sink and even in my laundry soap.

Are there any old-fashion cleaning tips you learned from your mother or grandmother that you still use today? Please share them with us in the comments section below.

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