Why Is My Washing Machine Leaving Marks On My Clothes and How To Fix It Easily.

The last thing I wanted to see after a week of providing Austin Cleaning Services, was streaky sheets out of my own washer. I’m usually one up on the maintenance list at home, but heck, I’m not even wearing earrings anymore (I usually feel naked without my daily earrings) So the rest of the regular stuff is kind of out of sync too.

​Why Did My Washing Machine Leave Dark Marks On My Clothes?

streaks on clothes in a washing machine

I tend to wash once a week since I’m an empty nester now. I ran my darks through a cycle of washing but I don’t dry them, and that’s when I noticed some streaks. I figured it was a stain from work but I should have known better.
Next I washed my white sheets. Can I tell you that the highlight of my days are getting into bed in fresh clean sheets! Mind you, it’s about 8pm so I’m exhausted and wasn’t ready for the streak of luck I had, to now be up another hour trying to figure this dirt out.
Since I didn’t put anything in the dryer I knew it was the washer. I stuck my head and hand in to look for anything inside, but nothing was found. I knew it was the drum.
Funny that something we rely on to clean, doesn’t do it’s job, and we realize we didn’t maintain it to help it routinely work.
Routine cleaning of the washing machine helps it routinely clean your clothes. My washing machine even has a tub cycle clean button, but just like not wearing earrings daily, I got used to not maintaining my washing machine too.

washing machine cycle buttons

So the washing machine drum (especially in front loaders) gets grimy. It collects greasy residue from past loads and sometimes gets a buildup of fabric softeners and grime mixed together causing these marks on your clothes.
I don’t use fabric softener, but I do usually wash all loads in cold water. So I knew it was time to press that Tub Clean.

How To Clean The Drum Of The Washing Machine Even If You Don’t Have a Tub Clean Cycle.

washing machine manuals

Of course most machines have manuals that we store more than read right? Yes I’m guilty too, because I know what to do, but out of sight out of mind happens to the best of us. My machine even has these maintenance things that stick to the side of the washing machine.

No one is looking to the side of their machine or even inside unless they are missing a sock.

If you don’t have. Tub clean cycle, this method works just as good.

Run a heavy duty cycle on Hot and replace the detergent with White Distilled Vinegar in the dispenser.

I ran my cycle this way even though it has the tub clean and washed my sheets again to test it out.

white sheets on a king size bed with pillows

Fresh, clean sheets again!
My extra hour washing cycle could have been prevented if I ran a tub clean, or a cycle of white distilled vinegar a month to prevent it. Unless it’s scheduled like a dentist appointment most of us will forget.

How our Austin Cleaning Service Can Help You.

We can personalize a cleaning service to meet your needs. We have many downtown Austin Cleaning Service clients that are too busy to even realize their fridge has a built in filter let alone how to routinely maintain their washing machine.
We understand busy personally, and can schedule routine maintenance things like this washing machine cycle to your service.
If my own home was on our Austin Cleaning Services Routine, I would have a personalized to do list with dates and more. 


 I guess I need to be my own client so that I too can get my time back.

How To Remove Hard Water Marks On The Ice Dispenser Drip Pan

​​​If your fridge has an outer water and ice dispenser, the chances that you’ve seen


white marks on the drip pan are probable.  Not nice to look at but actually easy to clean.

Here’s two options, ones Eco Friendly, and ones not.

​As we’ve all seen in this pandemic, you have to adapt to what’s needed in cleaning to be effective.
So don’t be afraid if the eco friendly cleaning option doesn’t work well for your stains. The back up option is effective and fast too! Remove the drip pan.
You may notice a lot of black mold where the drip pan was located. The water has seeped in the cracks for quite some time.
Going forward, we recommend removing the drip pan weekly and washing it, and the area around this to stop the growth of mold.about:blankGet a plastic or glass container that’s long enough and deep enough to fit the drip pan.

Place the drip pan inside the container.
Pour white distilled vinegar on the drip pan to cover it.
You may begin to scrub with a toothbrush or scrubby side of the sponge to see if the water marks easily come off.
If you notice they aren’t budging, then soak it for a few hours and scrub.
​Soaking overnight may be the best option for stubborn stains.

The Eco Friendly Method To Remove Hard Water Marks On The Ice Dispenser Drip Pan

The Easy Way To Remove Hard Water Stains From An Ice Maker Drip Pan Using A Chemical

Remove the drip pan and place it on a thick rag that you don’t mind ruining.
Use a Heavy Duty Acidic Cleaner found at your local hardware store and pour it directly on the drip pan.
You will immediately see bubbles form.
Begin scrubbing the white stains away and rinse.
This is literally a 1 minute time removal process.
Acid eats through things fast so you have to act faster.
Rinse, wipe and replace.

Personal Note From Penny

With both of these methods you can soak paper towels with the White Distilled Vinegar or Acidic Cleaner and wipe/scrub the other areas around the drip pan.
Be sure to rinse the areas with a spray bottle of hot distilled water after, since you can’t remove and rinse those areas off in the sink. 
A major thing we have noticed when providing Austin Cleaning Services, is that clients have a hard time removing hard water because they are using their hard water to clean.  Our Austin Housekeeping services understand theres a method to the madness of Hard Water removal and it’s a process best left to the Pro’s to routinely clean your home for you. 

5 Do’s & Don’t Do’s of Lysol Wipes & What We Recommend Instead.

Two months deep into this pandemic and stores still can’t match the demand for Lysol wipes and sprays. It’s a shame because most people are thinking a quick wipe or a spray will sanitize their home.
Oh so far from the disinfecting truth.
The truth is
no ones home can be sterile but everyone can use these tips to keep their homes high touch areas disinfected often.

5 Don’ts of Lysol Wipes

1. Don’t use it on a porous surface!
For example:
Granite is porous. Even if it is sealed. It’s sealed for protection but, these wipes can actually eat away at the sealant damaging your granite surfaces!

2. Don’t Use a wipe to clean everything!
I know that sounds weird but it’s not meant to clean.
Soap and water with a microfiber rag will agitate the dirt and clean.
​The wipe will then disinfect a small area. (One wipe can only provide adequate disinfection to an area of around three-square-feet or less)

3. Don’t use these wipes on anything your mouth will touch.

4. Don’t use these wipes to wipe the leather in your car! The wipes will strip the leather of its natural oils causing it to brittle.

5. Don’t flush a wipe in the toilet

5 Do’s of Lysol Wipes

1. Do KNOW your surface before wiping!

2. Do use a wipe rather than a spray on REMOTES. Just take the batteries out as to not mess your settings up.

3. DOORKNOBS (especially the entry doors to your home.) you haven’t had a chance to wash your hands inside yet so doorknobs are icky.

4. LIGHT-SWITCHES get used more than cleaned in the regular cleaning routines for sure.

5. DOOR HANDLES such as the frequently used handles on the fridge, faucets, cabinets and drawers.

What To Use If You Don’t Have Lysol Wipes

Got an empty Lysol Wipe Container?

Cut a roll of paper towels to match the length
(bread slicer works fine 😉)

Ingredients

  1. select-a-size paper towels.
  2. 18 ounces 99% isopropyl alcohol.
  3. 5 ounces water.
  4. 2 tablespoons hydrogen peroxide.
  5. 45 drops essential oils. Tea tree, eucalyptus, and thyme were actually studied for their antivirus properties and we use them in our own Austin Home Cleaning Service office made cleaning solutions.

SHAKE IT LIKE A POLAROID PICTURE 🤪

My 2 Pennies Worth🤷🏻‍♀️

Disinfecting wipes are a good go-to for disinfecting small areas.
Check the manufacturer’s guidelines but most keyboards, remotes, game controllers, and phone cases can be safely disinfected with a wipe. (Please don’t swipe a wipe off on your iPhone with one!) Some cell phones have a protective coating on the screen that can be harmed by certain chemicals so check before you clean.

The Essential Cleaning Products Every Home Needs.

By the look of the cleaning aisle in H-E-B, it seems that everyone seems to think that every cleaning product is essential right now. This couldn’t be further from the truth because the surfaces in everyone’s homes are different, not everyone has COVID-19 in Austin, and you don’t have enoughspace where you store your cleaning supplies as it is.about:blank

A Ph Neutral Cleaner/Degreaser (disinfectant added in is a bonus)

Whether it’s the kitchen or bathroom, grime, built up dirt, grease and body oils need one cleaner that can remove dirt without removing the finish off of the surfaces in your home.
Personalize this to your own home. If your surfaces are mainly granite, marble or stone, find a specific cleaner for the specific surfaces. From that same ph neutral line, you will be able to find a specific mold/mildew cleaner too. Check our Instagram feed for the product we recommend for stone, tile, marble and granite. https://www.instagram.com/pennyspersonaltouchservices/

PRO TIP: Buy the cleaner by the gallon and make your own spray bottles dilutions for the kitchen and bathroom. The most effective oh neutral cleaning supplies by the gallon cost less than a 24 oz spray bottle of regular All Purpose grocery bought cleaner.

WE CAN PERSONALIZE A CLEANING KIT FOR YOUClick the button above to have Penny come out and personalize a cleaning caddy for your home.

Essential Glass Cleaner/Polish

The essential cleaning product after this one is what makes our method more cost effective and easy.  You don’t have to buy or spray Windex, especially since windex and most other glass cleaners can literally strip the sealer off of your granite and marble as well as dull the shine. 
A very effective glass cleaner/Polish is simply a spray bottle filled with Distilled water and about 10 drops of your favorite essential oil.  The key to this polish working effectively is the rag you specifically use which is why the next product is essential. 

Colored Microfiber Rags

 Providing cleaning services in Austin has us in and out of many homes with many different needs and issues.  Not everyone is going to tell us if they have been sick since we were there last.  We have to not only clean in a protective way for ourselves, but for the next Austin cleaning service client we attend to.  
Buy colored microfiber rags and assign each color to each cleaning task.
We use Green microfiber rags for glass/mirror cleaning
Blue for bathroom
Yellow for Kitchen ( We use two since the kitchen usually has stainless steel and other hard surfaces
Orange for hand dusting
We use one set of rags and floor microfiber mop heads when we provide Austin cleaning services as to not cross contaminate from home to home.

Essential Toilet Bowl Cleaner

Every one from our Downtown Austin cleaning clients to our Spanish Oaks cleaning clients should have clean toilets because the grocery stores don’t have toilet bowl cleaners lately.  I am glad we don’t rely on the local grocery store for our cleaning products!  
Pick a toilet bowl cleaner that has a great spout to put the cleaner directly under the rim of the bowl.
Pro Tip: Bar Keepers friend ( liquid formula only please) will also clean your porcelain toilet and it is in stock everywhere because a lot of people don’t know how it works. 

Essential Stainless Steel Polish

Please don’t try any DIY methods on your stainless steel to polish and clean it.  You should assign a microfiber rag for stainless steel polishing only to be effective. 

Wood Furniture Polish

Your wood furniture polish should have an assigned microfiber rag as well to polish and not spread the dirt.  Any wood polish that is orange based is an effective degreaser as well if there is built up grime on the wood furniture.  

Essential PH-Neutral or Specific Wood Floor cleaner

As much as we recommend taking your shoes off at the door, your pets can’t do that.  We do recommend your floor cleaner to be specific to the material the floor is made of as to not damage the surfaces. 

Essential Soap

Soap is preferable to bleach in fighting this coronavirus so why is there still any kind of soap left on the shelves but bleach limited to two a person for purchase? Total miseducation on this one and not enough deep understanding on how to break down what could be on a surface. 
PLEASE CHECK THIS LINK TO SEE THE BREAKDOWN OF WHY SOAP IS ESSENTIAL
www.nationalgeographic.com/science/2020/03/why-soap-preferable-bleach-fight-against-coronavirus/#close

Essential Disinfectant Spray

Again, unless you have this infectious virus, spraying a disinfectant could bring more long term health risks than good.  It is always best to have a disinfectant spray in your cleaning kit at home because you do never know when someone will get sick.  It is however not essential to spray if your household is not sick.  The indoor air quality can be worse than the air quality outside with all of the things that we spray, cook, body scents and more that are trapped in a four wall space to live in.

A Personal Note from your Local Austin Cleaning Service Pro

Keep in mind that there is always a what if  your household becomes contaminated in this COVID_19 pandemic. Don’t wait!  Prepare now with the appropriate specific surface things to sanitize your home in an emergency only cleaning kit that you should only use if someone gets sick.  Prior Proper Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance is one of my favorite quotes and needed at this time. 

Try to keep your essential cleaning products to no more than what can fit in a cleaning caddy that you can take from room to room to effectively clean and manage storage in your home too.  
If you are wanting to remove unwanted cleaning products, or have a Pro come out an personalize a cleaning caddy for your home, feel free to connect here.

5 Crucial Things To Do at Home Daily During The Coronavirus Pandemic To Ease Your Mind.

There’s no need to go crazy disinfecting and cleaning daily unless someone is actively sick, but there is a crucial need for every member of your household to change the way they enter the home from here on out.  
After finding out how the coronavirus can last on surfaces, and realizing that the City of Austin and surrounding counties, feels it safer for us to be in our homes than outside of our homes to stop its spread, let’s revisit how we enter our homes daily.

Let the Coronavirus pandemic change the way you live your life before you relax at home with these five steps.

Why Removing Your Shoes At The Door Matters.

(Personal shout out to my Brother Immanuel who  didn’t know I was sneaking a pic behind him) 
I’m going to keep this one simple. Did you use a bathroom today? Did anyone else use that bathroom before you? Ever seen someone spit on the ground? Does your dog pee outside? I’m sure that’s more than enough solid info for you to see the reason removing your shoes at the door is crucial.  There is no  solid evidence of this new coronavirus strain to say it can be transmitted from clothes or shoes but, the soles of shoes are mostly made of materials that it sticks to for quite some time so why take the risk?

Why Washing Your Hands As Soon As You Get Home is crucial.

If you just removed your shoes, chances are your hands touched them. So you’re washing your hands from the daily grime and from removing your shoes that held more grime. Before you hug your wife, hold the baby, or touch that remote…. wash off the outside grime on your hands.

Why Properly Storing Dirty Clothes Matter w/a Virus.

Personal confession time ( I have a chair) you know what chair I’m talking about. The chair that seems to get the daily clothes and jackets of the day. If you’re in the healthcare field, or around many people that possibly may be sick with any kind of illness, it’s always best to properly store dirty clothes.

Why an Immediate Shower is a Must When You Get Home.

You’ve been outside around many things you can’t see on your clothes that have attached themselves. Imagine all that green pollen piling up on your car. I’m sure you have a dusting of it on you as well. Showering all of the outside dirt off makes sense to relax in your clean home.

Why Hiring A Routine Professional Cleaning Service is Crucial during cold/flu/virus/allergy and LIFE season.

Routine cleaning from a professional is totally different than an everyday pick up from yourself. Owning a professional Austin House Cleaning company myself, I understand busy and sacrificing time. We just wrapped one of our new company smart cars with a new quote that reads
“ You work too hard for everyone else, be smart & let us work for you”
You deserve the assurance in knowing your home has been cleaned with the right products so that you can maintain it in between if needed. Our Austin Home cleaning services has a very detailed approach in thoroughly cleaning each room. We understand cross contamination and details matter to you and your health.


Follow us on Instagram for some behind the scenes videos and cleaning facts that just make sense to every day life beyond the Coronavirus pandemic because this too shall pass!
Amen!

The Simple and Efficient Way to Clean/Disinfect Your Home During COVID-19 Or Any Virus.

When this COVID-19 outbreak occurred it brought panic to people to rush and buy all sorts of chemical cleaners, many of which are unnecessary or ineffective against viruses. The simple and efficient way to clean and disinfect isnot in panicking but understanding.

Understanding How To Clean &
Disinfect Your Home.

Understanding what you are bringing into your home and how your own steps from the front door can stop the spread of any illness is the first step.
When we understand how to live in a more clean, hygienic way daily, cleaning and disinfecting is easier.

Understand your surfaces and note that every cleaner on the cleaning aisle at H-E-B that says all purpose disinfectant cannot be sprayed on all surfaces! I’ve seen granite look hazy and marble destroyed by someone simply not understanding the surface or the cleaner.

Removing To Effectively Clean & Disinfect Your Home.

Removing should start at the front door by removing shoes and washing hands before touching or doing anything! The rush to relax at home should be paused by the mental note of the dirty world outside that we live in and not wanting to bring those germs into our homes. 
Everything you stepped on or touched should be removed before you relax in your home.
This is why we wear heavy duty gloves and protectant covers and sprays on our shoes to disinfect when professionally cleaning.

Cleaning Fact To Effectively Clean & Disinfect Against The COVID-19 & Other Viruses In Your Home.

Seeing all of the hand sanitizers and every single cleaner in the grocery store fly off the shelves is shocking because a simple combination of soap & water remains one of the strongest weapons against infectious diseases, including the novel coronavirus.

Why does Soap work? Soap works so effectively because its chemistry pries open the coronavirus’s exterior envelope and cause it to degrade. These soap molecules then trap tiny fragments of the virus, which are washed away in water.

When we provide Austin maid housekeeping cleaning services, we have a 7 step procedure to efficiently clean rooms. We understand that for our procedures to work, we have to do them step by step to clean effectively.
You have to clean before you disinfect and you have to understand before you clean.

COVID-19 fact to know

All viruses are bits of genetic code packed inside a collection of proteins and lipids, which can include a fat-based casing known as a viral envelope. Destroying an enveloped virus takes less effort than their non-enveloped compatriots, such as the stomach-busting norovirus, which can last for months on specific surfaces. Enveloped viruses typically survive outside of a body for only a matter of days and are considered among the easiest to kill, because once their fragile exterior is broken down, they begin to degrade.

Imagine the balloons in the pic below to be the virus. You can’t spray. You have to break down the barrier outside of them to kill them. So understanding what to remove, how to clean and break down the virus will help you understand then how to disinfect.

Disinfecting against Home viruses

After you’ve understood how to remove the unnecessary and not welcomed germs on hands and shoes into your home, then understood the surfaces and how to effectively clean them without damaging them, now you can disinfect.
Disinfectants (not cleaners) should not be rinsed off.
The CDC has a recommended list of approved disinfectants and cleaners for this particular virus on porous surfaces.  Keep in mind they just added over 40 more to this list prior to the recent outbreak. Effective products will have an EPA registration number on the packaging. See link here. www.americanchemistry.com/Novel-Coronavirus-Fighting-Products-List.pdf

Regular cleaning of your home reduces the spread of germs and dust making disinfecting easier.

Even though the city of Austin is at a standstill and most of us have more time on our hands than we usually did, it’s a great time to reevaluate how we clean and disinfect our home regularly.
Hiring a local Austin Housecleaning service on a regular basis, helps reduce the germ spread in your home making spraying a disinfectant a breeze.

How Your Silverware Should Speak To Your Waiter

Is it me, or does the waiter tend to come to the table at the wrong times? Well here’s a quick way to speak to your waiter without saying a word. Let’s just hope they too speak utensil etiquette American Style.
I say American Style, because The French use silverware etiquette in a whole other format. I’m sure my girlfriend Ajiri of Madame de le Maison can school us all on that, as she makes Gathering Beautiful with her linens and antiques in Paris. She makes dining and etiquette look glamorous. 

My daughter recently took a break from our company that provides Austin Cleaning Services to visit Paris with Ajiri and her company  for three weeks.   She got to see firsthand the difference between American and  French Etiquette at the dining table. As much we believe it all starts at home, I do believe that the more you travel the more you can personalize what you learned at home to match your surroundings and grow. Ajiri ( In the gorgeous cream dress) and friends making Gathering Beautiful in the  bathtub at a friends dinner just makes us want to be there! 


Whether you are enjoying a night out in  Downtown Austin for dinner or brunching with the girls in Dallas, here’s some facts to know about your silverware conversations to your waiter.  


How to Tell the Waiter
I’m Resting 🍴(Don’t Touch My Plate so they don’t ask  “Are You Still Working On That?”

I’m Finished 🍴 Utensil Position

Where Should Your Napkin Be Placed When Your Meal Is Done?

Don’t place your soiled napkin on the table until you are leaving the table. No one wants to look at your soiled napkin while their food digests.

Does it Matter Where My Silverware Is Placed At The Dinner Table

A lot of things seem to not matter anymore. I mean let me be real and say I am writing this blog live from Hotel Zaza Austin Group Therapy Dining Table at Brunch.  Things have changed with phones and computers being mobile.  I don’t know how the future will change how we eat, but then knives were only used as a symbol of wealth in the 6th-10th century and now they are on every table, and in every drawer where we provide Austin Maid Housekeeping Services. It’s safe to say silverware is here to stay.  We might as well know how they speak without words. 


Do however note that your silverware, once used, should never touch the table or table cloth again.  There is the main reason why it is good to know how to place your silverware on the table – to not only silently speak to your waiter, but to be of good etiquette as well. 

“FRIENDS AND GOOD MANNERS WILL CARRY YOU WHERE MONEY WON’T GO” – MARGARET WALKER

Wrap this Austin Staycation Experience Up For Christmas And Thank Me Later

Gifting experiences over store bought gifts is the new rage that most would agree leave more of a lasting impression. I was already impressed by this staycation before my room keyopened the 🚪 door.
If you’re familiar with this Texas Hotel 🏨 that’s known for their collection of colorful 🖼 art, then you may think you know where this blog is going. I’m a regular at all of their locations, and even I was surprised by this experience. So buckle up, and read on with me for a quick overview of Austin’s Best 🥇 Staycation that will leave anyone with a memory of the experience.

Cabin Fever

My Daughter and I stayed in The Concept Suite called Cabin Fever.
The most memorable thing of walking into the door was that they even changed the lighting 💡 in the room to be dim to match the mood of the coziness of the cabin theme. ✅✅

Dog Art mixed with Landscape Art took us from the living room area to the AMAZINGLY memorable design of the bathroom.

Austin Staycation Bathroom

I just love a bathtub while staycationing and this Bathtub 🛀 was perfect.
The 🚿 shower was bigger than I expected, and my daughter raved about how the shower head had the best settings of water 💦 pressure. The color choice 🎨 was memorable and mood setting to say the least. This was and is one of my favorite Austin Hotel Bathrooms so far for the relaxing mood! 🏨🥇🏨🥇

Austin’s Staycation Bedroom

The Bedroom 🛌 had details that matched the cabin fever theme. The most memorable parts weren’t even the bed. It was the armoire and side table that made us fall in love with the bedroom. 💙💚
Since we are Austin’s Best Detail Home Cleaning Service, it was necessary for us to add a detail to the side table! So we personalized the cabin theme to match the Christmas Season. (No bears were harmed with our Personal Touch!)

  • Remember how I said I’m a Zaza hotel regular? Well this location did something that the others had never done during my stays. They actually provided turn down service on the bed and left chocolates and waters by the bed for the evening. 💙💚 Loved that Detail!

The balcony was small but there was room enough for me to enjoy the downtown morning fog with a cup of tea from the regular morning butlers pantry that ZAZA provides to guests on each floor by the elevators. Teas, coffee and Biscotti’s await you and I always partake!

Austin’s Best Staycation Hotel With Instagram Worthy Areas You Have To See!

What makes this Hotel Staycation worthy is not only the memorable rooms, but the amazing details on every floor of the hotel. The hit for us was Group Therapy on the 7th floor. When the elevator doors open, we were greeted with a memorable surprise. Of course about 25 pictures were taken here and all but one made it to the blog. Lol

Austin’s Best Staycation Bar & Restaurant All In One

Group Therapy is a restaurant that we ate breakfast and lunch at. Since it’s close to the pool 🏊🏽 I decided upon checkin to take advantage of the quietness and eat outside in one of the cute concept areas. It may seem basic, but the grilled cheese and tomato 🍅 basil 🌿 soup were a hit!
Add an old fashioned 🥃 or three 🥃🥃🥃 to the energy of the pool area and 💤 let The StayCation Begin.

Austin’s Amazing Staycation Gym

This Gym was the biggest I’ve seen in Zaza Hotels. (Then again I kind of skip the Gym when on staycations ) but this one was huge!

But There’s More For You To Explore At This Austin Staycation Vacation.

We had to get back to providing the best detailed, personal touch Austin Downtown Cleaning Services so we missed a few things on our visit. We didn’t get to dine downstairs at Perfect Strangers and we didn’t partake in the spa services.
So we are leaving the rest up to you to relax, renew and refresh while we provide cleaning services in Downtown Austin and beyond.

SPECIAL SHOUTOUT TO JORGE VIVES. HOTEL ZAZA AUSTIN CONCIERGE THAT PROVIDES A PERSONAL EXPERIENCE WORTH COMING BACK TO.
HE’S A GEM 💎

Let’s Settle Some Handwashing Facts Before We Touch Another Thing Today.

To the lady with the bumper sticker “I Love Labradoodles” that also loves picking her nose at pump 6 at the HEB  in Austin, you inspired this blog so thank ya.  What a coincidence that the peak time of  the flu season is also the holiday season time. With so many more people traveling for family and fun, germs tend to mix and mingle in. 

So let’s settle some hand washing facts and myths before we touch another thing today.

Is Soap Or Hand Sanitizer Better?

Nothing beats actually using water to lather soap to wash hands, but sometimes water and soap isn’t always accessible. If you’re choosing to use a ​hand sanitizer, make sure it is at least 60-70% ethyl alcohol based. If choosing hand soap, go with an antibacterial soap.
It’s all about the level of dirt on your hands. I mean if your hands are visibly dirty then nothing beats soap and water method. If you however have just touched the ⛽️ gas pump, then alcohol based 60%-70% hand sanitizer will do.

How long should you take to wash your hands

Most of us can recall the old saying to sing the Happy Birthday song twice to actually get your hands clean. This still sings true to this day. 😉 Keep in mind that the song shouldn’t start till you’ve got the water and soap lathered together to work….. now sing 🎤 for 20 seconds and rinse.about:blank

Hot warm or cold water to wash your hands

Germs stick to our hands because of the natural oils our skin produces.
Hot water is going to remove oils from your hands better than cold water. It is however not proven if either hot water or cold water is best.
Either way we know that water is a must at removing any dirt and warmer water always helps remove dirt faster so I’m going to stick with hot (water) not scalding.

How long does hand sanitizer last on hands?

Shocking fact that hand sanitizer only lasts about two minutes. You also have to make sure you’ve applied enough to actually make your hands wet and not just damp. Seems like a short amount of time, but a lot can be passed in two minutes. You touch the gas pump of someone who has the flu. Then you touch your door handle. That’s usually less than two minutes, so why not take advantage of a few dabs of hand sanitizer.

Air dryers in bathroom

Run from air dryers in the bathroom. Hot air dryers blow all sorts of germs back onto your hands. Just think 🤔bacterial 🦠 splatter in a hot area. Yuck. Paper towels are your best friends as to not spread or reapply germs.When we provide cleaning services in Austin we always make sure to wear our gloves, but that doesn’t stop the spread of germs at all.  I try to keep small hand sanitizers in each company car but that doesn’t stop germs either.  We can’t stop the spread of germs but we can at least be mindful, especially during the holiday season of hand washing etiquette. 

The Hardest Thing Anybody Would Have To Clean In Their Life.

I’ve got a cleaning tip for just about anything anyone throws at me to help them, or so I thought. On Monday September 30th all of those tips went blurred when I personally
was hit with the most tragic personal news I have ever received. Monday being the start to a new week, and then the tomorrow Tuesday October 1st being the last quarter of the business finance goals for 2019, I planned to finish strong.

Death

Over the last month I had lost an old friend Gentry Mason, a client and friend Cedric Benson, and another person close to me Mrs. Terri Long from Longs Vacuum and appliance in Austin. From health reasons to a motorcycle tragedy, I cried, and celebrated every memory of their life I could to move on to work the next day to be strong. But on Tuesday October 1st, my planned strong end to the last business quarter of our Austin Cleaning Service failed and it was my first time experiencing a time in my professional career that I didn’t know how to handle the next day.

Life

Having employees and clients that rely on your strategic planning to make everything go smooth as can be was the last thing on my mind. My youngest brother Jeremiah had lost his battle with depression. I had no words, tips, answers to emails or voicemails to offer. My business life for 23 years has been to push forward through raising children, a divorce, sicknesses and death, but this loss left me without a will to push for business and focus on family. I often let my Dallas employees take over our social media pages but I do monitor it, so I started to think maybe I could have them take over, but the more I thought, the more I cried so I stopped.

The Pause

Stopping and pausing were two of the hardest things I had to deal with during the next few weeks of losing my Brother. I tried to stay busy and attempted to work on Wednesday after I received the news. It was the hardest and strongest half day of my life. Pushing through tears while pausing to connect with the family for immediate arrangements all the while trying to work was a disaster. While standing in my clients home to do a final walk through of the Round Rock cleaning services that were provided, I paused and then stopped. My client’s son’s name is Jeremiah and he is at the age that his name is still on everything in his room. I tried to hold back my emotions then realized that my push was too much and I had to pause for my own mental health.

Push Forward

The days went on and we planned a Memorial service for that Saturday. I pushed work off on others and paused what I couldn’t handle without letting most know what I personally was going through. Being a small business owner involves wearing many hats. Most don’t need to know what hat I have on at certain times of the day but all hats at this point were pushed away on the scale of importance and it cost me more than money. I lost a client of 9 years due to me attempting a reschedule that didn’t work for her. I looked at our client notes and noted every time I rescheduled for them and every time I made a last minute adjustment for them and realized that I had to push past the personal and pause for myself.

The Personal

Death has a personal side that most don’t see that attend the funeral or memorial services. The cleaning of your loved ones personal possessions in whatever state they have left it in and wherever it may be is the most personal thing you can deal with in the end of someone’s life.

  1. Don’t do it all alone.
  2. Pause and reflect at your own pace, even if it means taking as much time as you personally need.
  3. Think of others that loved your loved one. There may be something memorable to them that they would like to personally have.
  4. Therapy is needed.
  5. Be personal with work so that people can understand your pause.

The hardest thing that anybody would have to clean in their life is the leftover possessions and last movements of a loved one.

IT’S NOW FRIDAY OCTOBER 25TH AT 9:41 PM AND I’M GRATEFUL FOR EVERY PERSON THAT REACHED OUT AND EVERY CLIENT THAT PAUSED WITH ME THROUGH THIS LIFE MOMENT.
MY BROTHER JEREMIAH WAS 23 YEARS OLD BORN ON THE 4TH OF JULY. HE GAVE THE MOST AMAZING HUGS THAT YOU FELT IN YOUR SOUL.
I LEARNED THAT JEREMIAH COLLECTED ROCKS OF ALL SIZES AND SHAPES. THEY WERE IN HIS JACKET POCKETS, PANT POCKETS AND AROUND HIS ROOM THAT WE WENT THROUGH AFTER HIS PASSING. I NEVER GOT A CHANCE TO ASK HIM WHAT THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THE ROCKS MEANT TO HIM.

💚💙

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