Busy Mom’s Cleaning Tricks to Save Time and Money. #1 (front loader funk, tub and floor sparkle)

Yesterday was super serious and very personal into my life so today I thought I’d lighten it up with one of my favorite cleaning tips for the super busy mom (and for any person who has to clean up after themselves).

spring cleaning with vinegar

Vinegar is super cheap and a product not only good for cooking, French fries and making salad dressings but it has a powerful cleaning ability.  AND IT’S NATURAL!

For a busy mom with kids, I want natural.  There’s no need to add extra stress with poison control or adding a zillion locks to all your cabinets.  Natural cleaning is a great solution.  So today I will share on how I use vinegar in the house.


vinegar and water cleaner for bathroom

We have two full baths in our home but one is the primary shower for 5/6 of our family.  It gets dirty quickly AND it’s the one that all our guests use.  So the pressure is on for me to keep it tidy, hair free (all you ladies know what I’m talking about–one time blow drying and styling looks like you could donate to Locks for Love), toddler potty training mishaps, and toothpaste free (how does it get everywhere?!).  So each day I wipe everything down.  A few years back we switched to all cloth cleaning but now and again I get one roll of paper towels for the convenience factor and do a quick wipe up of all things making a home on my white tile floor.

The Floor Factor

What you need for a little floor sparkle:

  1. Spray bottle
  2. white vinegar
  3. water
  4. cloth or paper towels
  5. a TBSP of rubbing alcohol if you’d like to turn this into a glass cleaner too. The alcohol eliminates streaks.

tub and shower sparkle with vinegar, dish soap,and soap wandThe Tub Factor

Since all 4 of the kids still love a bath, my tub needs to sparkle all the time.  A soap wand with the proper ingredients can be used each time you shower.  It will never be cleaner!!!

What you need:

  1. A soap wand (do not get one at the Dollar Tree.  They won’t work.  I’ve got personal experience here). Invest in a good one.  I bought this one at Target on clearance for $3.24 but it was originally $7.50
  2.  Dish soap
  3.  Vinegar

I don’t think there is a perfect ratio here.  I like to do about a 1:1 ratio but if you do too much vinegar it will just soak out the sponge and empty the wand.  Be sure to sit the wand sponge up or the vinegar will run out regardless.

get rid of the smell in your front loader with vinegar


Front Loader Funk Factor


I discovered this AMAZING fix when I was cloth diapering.

My friends talked about how their front loaders smelled badly; how they had to get special cleaners or how they had to spend oodles of time cleaning out the funk in their front loader.

I never had a smelly machine.  Then I stopped cloth diapering.  FUNK.  I realized the vinegar that I used to freshen the diapers also freshened the machine.

So though I don’t use cloth diapers anymore, I brought back the vinegar.  I put about 1/4 cup in the fabric softener section about once a month and I have never had a smell again.  It makes sense right? –go take a peak at your coffee maker —the cleaning instructions say to run vinegar through it to clean it out and enhance machine function. 🙂

And the soap you see in the photo is our home made laundry detergent (via Young House Love) but we added the oxy clean to the original recipe.  We’ve been using this recipe for a year now and have been super happy. We purchase our supplies in bulk and make a large amount that fills 1 and a half animal cracker containers from Costco. (and that amount lasts for one year!)

  • 1 c. grated Fels Naptha soap
  • ½ c. washing soda
  • ½ c. borax
  • ** 1/2 c. oxy clean
  • Use 2 tablespoons.

What is your favorite cleaning tip or trick?

Next up: Motherhood Mania: Selfishness and Sacrificing the Mundane Book Talkdesperate

Lori signature


2 thoughts on “Busy Mom’s Cleaning Tricks to Save Time and Money. #1 (front loader funk, tub and floor sparkle)

  1. Lori – ever since you told me about your bathroom quick clean trick I have done it and our bathroom feels (and is) so much cleaner. Recently, I have not been as diligent but I hope to get back to it soon. I’ll have to start doing the shower/tub cleaner too. Thanks for the ideas.

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