Spring! It seemed like such a long winter but now the warmer weather is here. This is the time of year my 82-year-old client, Sandy, likes to have a good deep clean done in her condo. However, Sandy does not have the physical strength anymore to do all the work herself, so at my recent visit, we talked about her options.

“I could hire a cleaning company, but I think my granddaughter would love to earn some extra money,” she said. “Plus, I know she’ll do a good job.” Sandy’s granddaughter Liz was a college student and was saving for a car. “I think we’ll be a good team.”

Sandy called Liz and the two agreed on a date the following weekend. “The only thing is,” Sandy said, “I don’t know where to begin.” I suggested that Sandy make a list of all of the tasks in the house and mark her name next to the things she felt she could do herself.

In truth, Sandy was quite tidy, and her home was more cluttered than dirty. When I returned to check on her she had made a thorough list by going through each room to create her list of priorities for the rooms:

  • Dust/polish furniture
  • Clean window sills
  • Clean windows
  • Wash curtains
  • Dust blinds
  • Dust light fixtures
  • Clean baseboards
  • Clean ceiling fans
  • Vacuum and mop floors
  • Organize mail and discard old newspapers and magazines

The bathroom checklist included scrubbing the tub, cleaning the wall tiles, countertops, toilet, mirror, and mopping the floor.

The kitchen checklist was:

  • Clean out refrigerator
  • Clean oven
  • Clean microwave
  • Organize pantry and discard expired items
  • Clean countertops
  • Organize drawers and cabinets

We also talked about the cleaning products Sandy would need that she did not already have, and what she could make herself. She wanted to avoid using harsh, chemical-based cleaning solutions as much as possible. She prepared three spray bottles:

  • 4 tablespoons of baking soda mixed with a quart of water. This makes a good cleaner for kitchen countertops, appliances, and the inside of the refrigerator.
  • 2 cups of water, ½ cup of vinegar, ¼ cup rubbing alcohol. This can be used to clean windows and mirrors.
  • 1 cup vinegar and 1 cup water. This is an all-purpose household cleaner. Sandy added a few drops of lemon essential oil for a nicer scent.

Spring cleaning may not seem too exciting but for my client Sandy, the chance to see and work with her granddaughter instead of paying someone else to do the work was a bonus.

“It’s really nice to have a clean house,” she told me after the work was done. “But even better, I got to catch up with Liz. Between the two of us, we got the work done by the end of the day and then got take-out for dinner. She even said she had a fun time!”

If you or someone in your family are facing aging challenges, please give us a call at (920) 740-8441 or email us at sue@coylecaremanagement.com. We’ll be happy to assist!