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Keeping Your Refrigerator Clean, Sanitary, and Safe


In nearly every home in America there is a refrigerator. Every fifteen min¬utes the motor turns on and it magically keeps things cold. However, without routine maintenance and sanitation, this appliance can be a hazard.

There are several steps to keeping a refrigerator running safely.

1. Routine Maintenance:

Vacuum condenser coils: For most refrigerators, the heat exchanger coils are underneath the refrigerator. There is an access at the front of the refrigerator at the bottom. This panel pops off and allows you to clean the coils using one of your vacuum cleaner attachments. When the coils become dust covered, the dust acts as insulation which makes heat exchange more difficult. Your refrigerator has to work harder which increases the cost of operation.

Clean drain hole and drip pan: Refrigerators typically have a drain hole and a drip pan to catch water condensation. Clean any food particles or deposits out of the drain hole. Clean the drip pan in soapy water to prevent bad odors.

Change water filter (if applicable): If your refrigerator has an automatic ice-maker or chilled water dispenser, then you may also have a water filter in the water supply line. The filter in this line should be changed out in accordance with your manufacturer’s recommendation.

Keeping a refrigerator clean and sanitary on the inside is just as important as the routine maintenance. The refrigerator can be one of the most bacteria-ridden places in your home.

2. Sanitation:

Start by removing everything from the refrigerator. Throw away any wilted produce or old leftovers. Check the expiration dates on all products, throwing away anything outdated.

De-frost/clean freezer and ice-maker: Never let frost in freezer build-up more than ¼ inch. Do not use metal or sharp instruments to scrape off frost, as this could cause damage to the inside of the freezer. After frost has melted, clean the inside with a solution of baking soda and water. Clean any mineral deposits from the automatic ice-maker, if applicable. Defrosting helps improve the energy efficiency.

Then carefully remove all of the shelves, racks, drawers and supports and put them in your bathtub. Spray them with a bleach/water solution or a commercial disinfectant spray cleaner. Let them sit in the tub while you direct your attention to the refrigerator.

Put on a pair of rubber gloves. Use any cleaning spray containing bleach or a bowl of warm bleach water. Use a kitchen sponge soaked in the solution to scrub down the interior, from top to bottom, including door seal. Allow debris to collect at the bottom, then soak up excess water and debris from bottom with paper towels and throw into the trash. The bleach/water mixture will kill mold and its spores that you cannot see.

After the interior is cleaned to your satisfaction, use an old toothbrush to reach into the crevices, around screws and support hardware. Also clean the outside of the door and the handles.

Dump the dirty water and replace with warm clean water and a clean cloth. Rinse the inside of the refrigerator to remove the bleach. Rinse your cloth regularly during this process. Make sure that you thoroughly rinse all the bleach from any gaskets or other soft plastic on the inside. Then dry thoroughly with a clean soft, lint-free, absorbent cloth.

Now back to the racks shelves and other items that are soaking in your bath tub.

You may need to rewet these items then give them a good scrubbing with a household sponge that has a scrubber side to remove all dried on spills. Rinse well with clear warm water and allow draining. Then dry thoroughly with a clean, soft absorbent, lint-free cloth and place them back into the refrigerator. Line the vegetable drawer with paper towels.

Place all products that did not get thrown away, neatly back into the refrigerator. Open a new box of baking soda and place in the refrigerator door to absorb any odors that may build up over time. Replace the box of baking soda once per month.

Cleaning spills as they happen is the best way to keep your refrigerator sanitized. A deep cleaning as described above should be done at least once a month, or more if needed.






Get Organized! How to Organize Your Closet


If you’re like a lot of people, you have a messy closet – it’s disorganized, you can’t find anything, and maybe you even hate just the very thought of opening the closet door or going into the closet – knowing you’ll only end up stressed as you try to find what you need or want.

Why live like this? Having an organized closet saves time and a lot of stress!

Here’s a handy organizing guide with closet organizing tips that can help tame the Closet Monster. It’s available on Kindle, so you’ll be able to read it just about anywhere.

Get Organized! How to Organize Your Closet offers organizing tips to help you organize your closet and keep it organized. Find organizing tips for organzing your own closet, children’s closets, organizing for two, seasonal organizing, staying organized after shopping, and more.

A messy closet is just cluttered, doesn’t utlitize the closet space, and makes it hard to find what you’re looking for. Having a an organized closet not only gets rid of the clutter, it helps eleminate stress. Get Organized! How to Organize Your Closet will help you declutter and get organized.

Order your copy by clicking here now. You’ll be able to instantly download your closet organizing ebook.



Wedding Planning on a BudgetCreate Your Own Wedding Planning Checklist

Even for them most organized woman, trying to plan a wedding with no timeline and no checklist can lead to disaster. Especially as your wedding date gets closer, you’re going to have a million little things on your mind and deposit due dates or appointments will be jumping out at you from nowhere. Creating a wedding planning schedule early on in the planning process will give you a great guideline to follow and will provide an all-in-one reminder resource rather than wallpapering your whole house with sticky notes.

1. Making a Timeline of Your Checklist

Having a list of things that need to be done is great, but keeping things in chronological order will help you stay much more organized and keep you on top of any upcoming deadlines or appointments. A lot of bridal magazines or wedding websites offer wedding planning checklists that usually range over about 18 months or so. You may have more or less time than that to plan your wedding, so creating your own checklist will allow you to tailor it to your specific needs.

2. Incorporate Your Budget into Your Checklist

Deposits and vendor bills can sneak up on you when you have so much already on your mind. By putting due dates on your timeline checklist, you can avoid overstretching your budget at any one time. Using your checklist this way will allow you to decide at glance when to schedule in another big purchase for your wedding at a time when you won’t be paying for too many other expensive wedding necessities.

3. Get the Most from Your Checklist

Be sure to check your list weekly to see what new errands you’ll have to keep track of. As you get closer to the wedding date, it could be a good idea to start checking it daily. Creating smaller task lists off the main schedule every day can keep you focussed on just what needs to be done for that day. By having a master schedule saved onto your computer, you can add to and edit your checklist as often as needed and reprint updates when necessary. It would also be a good idea to print a copy of your checklist for everyone helping you plan your wedding.

When you’re starting your checklist, fill in all the most important dates and appointments first and plan the smaller details around those. Whenever possible, try to spread out the tasks that aren’t time sensitive so you don’t overwhelm yourself in any one day, week, or month. Sticking to an organized checklist can take a lot of stress and uncertainty out of your planning and will keep you on the right track if you ever start feeling like you’ve become too swamped.


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Wedding Planning on a Budget

by Home Heart Strings

Wedding Planning on a Budget

When it comes to planning your wedding, it’s difficult to eliminate some of the features and elements that are most important to you.

With this complete guide to planning the ultimate wedding on a shoestring budget, you won’t have to.

Upon order, you will be able to download your wedding planning ebook immediately.

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Wedding Planning on a Budget


How to Get Organized for Tax Season

by Home Heart Strings

You sit down to pay your taxes, and the stack of receipts and paperwork beside you topples to the floor. You begin filling out the paperwork and forms, only to realize you’re missing information. Or you get an angry phone call from your accountant who isn’t accepting your shoebox full of receipts any more.

Sound familiar? This is the reality for millions of people every April. The “why worry about it now?” mentality takes over the other eleven months of the year. Then come April you just want to kick yourself. Whether you’re somewhat organized or your papers are a complete mess, these tips and steps will help you get through your taxes with as little pain and stress as possible.

===>> Gather Your ID Numbers

Keep your tax identification numbers, social security numbers, and social security cards, in a safe place and keep them all together. You’ll need the social security numbers for all of your dependants as well as yourself, and your spouse if you’re married. When you’re filling out your tax forms you won’t have to hunt for this information.

===>> Gather Your Income Forms and Statements

If you’re employed then you’ll want to gather your w-2 forms from the past year. If you’re self-employed, you’ll want to run reports that display your profits, expenses, and income for the past year. You’ll also want to have last year’s tax forms at the ready. This is particularly useful if you are having an accountant file your taxes this year or you’re using a software program to determine your taxes and file them.

You’ll also want to gather all the forms from your various assets and investments. For example, if you own a home you’ll receive a statement from the bank that owns your loan. If you own stock you’ll receive a form from your broker. If you have any type of retirement or investment account, you’ll receive a statement from the financial institution holding those accounts. These forms will outline the money you’ve earned, or lost, for the year. You’ll also receive statements from organizations you’ve donated money to.

===>> Gather Your Receipts

You don’t need to keep every single receipt you had for the entire year. The receipts that are important are the ones that are related to your medical expenses, your childcare expenses, your business expenses and so on. If it’s related to a potential deduction then keep the receipt.

That’s it. With this information you should be able to sit down and finish your taxes in just a few short hours. Organization saves time and stress, and it ensures you have all the information you need to do your taxes correctly.