Monday, 29 February 2016

Top 5 Tips To Avoid Cleaning Related Winter Woes

Sometimes winter sucks- snow is falling, the wind is howling, and all you want is to park yourself in front of a fire with a glass of hot cocoa and wait until spring. We’re just lower energy in the winter; it’s natural and it happens to the best of us. We let some things slide over the winter months- sometimes healthy eating or time at the gym, sometimes hobbies, but more often than not it’s cleanliness. It’s hard to work up the energy to keep your home in order when you’re having trouble finding enough to roll out of bed. That said, there are ways to avoid the winter cleaning blahs, and 
1-800 Rid-of-it has you covered there with our top 5 tips to avoid cleaning related winter woes.

Spice things up a bit

We tend to think of cleaning up around the house as a boring chore, just one more thing we need to do but never want to. If that’s the case, it’s time for you to rethink cleaning. Put your favourite show on or blast some music to rock out to in the background; raise the tempo and make cleaning fun again!

Get yourself a cleaning buddy

Like with just about anything else, cleaning is more likely to be a drag when you’re doing it alone, so don’t! Rather than giving your partner or kids a list of chores to get done on their own time, clean together. You can talk, laugh, and feed off of each other’s energy, and the work goes by notably faster with someone by your side.

Use cleaning to break up your work

Given road conditions, unreliable transport and the dreaded flu, winter involves a lot of working from home. If you’re anything like me, you probably have a tougher time being productive in the comfort of your own home than you do in at the office. If you are working from home and you hit a wall in your work, take some time off and clean! The change of scenery and focus should improve your productivity, if you’re lucky, l bringing order to your home will bring order to your thinking. Small chunk your work and your cleaning and both will benefit.

Set the mood

Like I mentioned earlier, sometimes all you want to do is bask in the glow of a warm fire with a hot mug of something or other and wait out winter. So why not do that and clean at the same time? Light a fire, drape yourself with a blanket and get to work! No one said cleaning needs to be unpleasant, so get comfortable and get to work.

Turn it into a workout

I saved this one for last because it’s the furthest from left field. Exercise!? In winter!? Isn’t the whole point of winter to overeat and neglect your body!? Well, sort of… But we’re passed the holidays now and New Year’s resolutions should be just as important as holiday habits. Try to speed clean, alternate a set of pushups or situps with each room you clean or do some heavy lifting and clean under furniture. Your cleaning will be doubly efficient and doubly beneficial and that should motivate you to get it done.

There you have it. The winter blahs don’t need to get you down, get out there and get it done.

Friday, 19 February 2016

Geothermal Energy in Iceland

In these energy conscious times, there is one small nation that has enviable resources. Iceland sits on a rift in the continental plates and has a high concentration of volcanoes. The benefit is geothermal energy. Five plants supply over a quarter of Iceland's electricity. Even more impressive is that 87 per cent of the buildings get their heat and hot water needs from this geothermal resource. The heated underground reservoirs are continually replenished by rain water. That is not in short supply, they get up to 177 inches yearly. They have had to run a separate pipe to supply cold water! The deepest parts of the reservoirs can get to some 750 degrees Fahrenheit.

The rest of the electricity is supplied by hydro power. This small nation is dotted with magnificent waterfalls and not all have been harnessed as yet. Since they only get .1 per cent of their energy from fossil fuels, I think we can be fairly certain that they will meet the goal of being a totally fossil-fuel free nation very soon.

This has all been accomplished in the twentieth century. Iceland was once a very poor nation. They depended on peat and imported coal. However, geothermal energy was tapped for washing and bathing a thousand years ago. The foresighted developer was a Snorri Sturlusson who built a fifteen foot round pool, lined it with basalt tiles, and tapped into the naturally warm waters. His modern day descendants have fully restored it. The pool can be seen on top of a grassy hill in the town of Reyholt. Not as appealing as the tourist destination of the Blue Lagoon, but very intriguing.

It wasn't until the shock of the 1970s oil crisis that the Icelanders got serious about exploiting their own natural energy resources.  They  ended up jump starting a whole industry. They now export this expertise to Germany as industry gets incentives for using renewable resources there and to the Philippines, where there there are also reservoirs of underground heat. An Icelandic bank helped finance a project in China and also one in Nevada, U.S.

With such cheap energy, Iceland has also been able to start commercially viable greenhouses for vegetables and flowers. The climate in Iceland is harsh and imported food expensive, so all the population now enjoys the benefits of a more varied local diet than before.

By;Jacky Crawford

Tuesday, 16 February 2016

Ridofit's Guide To Cleaning Before You Clean

Anyone who, like me, was lucky enough to have a maid or a cleaning service in the house as a child has presumably marveled at a mother or father who cleans the house before the cleaner arrives. "Hey the cleaner is coming over this afternoon, make sure you pick up after yourselves" was enough to make my head spin. If someone is coming over to clean up the house, why are we cleaning up the house? Since the days of my youth, however, I've seen the error of my ways- they just wanted to make the job easier. The same principle that applied to those small one-day cleaning jobs scales-up to larger ones as well. Good prep work is the key to a smooth, routine spring cleaning; let us show you how to do that prep work.

First off and most importantly, stay organized. It's much easier to tackle a comprehensive clean when things are reasonably ordered rather than chaotically strewn about the house. The whole point of a spring clean is to make up for lost time. All of our lives get difficult from time to time, and we often fall a little behind around the house. That's fine, that's normal, but the more organized we are overall, the easier it will be to catch up when we do have the time. Bring in a set of organizers, devote some extra time to getting your cupboards in order, do what you need to do, but on the spectrum of order to chaos, make sure you're erring closer to order, to ensure a pain-free spring cleanup.

A huge aspect of spring cleaning for most of us is getting rid of stuff. Sure we clean up and organize the things that we want to keep, but we also get rid of quite a bit of stuff that we don't want to keep. There are regular clothing pickups across the GTA for various charity organizations, take advantage the next time one comes around. You're bound to have some extra stuff hanging around after Christmas. The best part of taking advantage of these charity services is that you don't have to feel guilty about getting rid of unwanted or duplicate gifts. They're going to a good cause, and, of course, giving them away to a good cause has the added benefit of decluttering your home and putting you in good shape for your spring cleaning.

Sort out your existing mail and greeting cards starting today, open your mail immediately and over the trash can. Doing this may seem unimportant, but it isn't. It's incredibly easy to let junk mail, bills, and other documents pile up. The more they do, the more space they take up and the more stress they add to your life, so make up for lost time and get what you already have in order and continue to do so from now on and there's one more thing crossed off of your list before spring cleaning begins.

Give your wardrobe a once-over. Doing this doesn't need to be a full cleaning overhaul, but every little bit helps. Other than documents and gifts, another huge aspect of spring decluttering revolves around clothing. Go through your wardrobe one time and sort out anything too small and anything you haven't worn in the last three months. Sometimes it's tough to let go of your clothes for sentimental reasons, but if you can't or don't wear it anymore, giving it, perhaps to one of those earlier-mentioned charity organizations might be your best bet.

And there you have it, spring cleaning doesn't have to be hard. Take care of your mail and other documents, purge your clothes, get rid of gifts, and organize overall and you'll be in excellent shape for spring cleaning when the ice begins to melt.