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New Year routine
Published in Al-Ahram Weekly on 24 - 01 - 2017

The start of a new calendar year is the perfect time for a fresh take on household care. If keeping the house neat and tidy is one of your New Year's resolutions, then it's better to start making some small changes to your routine to keep your house clean and orderly with minimal time and effort. This will give you the jumpstart you need to keep your home in better condition the whole year through.
If your cleaning resolution hasn't worked in the past, try these tips in order to have a happier and cleaner home:
- Make your bed every morning. It really does make a psychological difference in how you feel about your home. It also helps you get a good night's sleep.
- Before you tie off the kitchen rubbish bag, do a quick scan of your refrigerator for anything that needs to be pitched. Adding this simple step to your routine helps to ensure your fridge doesn't start to smell and cuts down on food waste.
- Give cleaning products enough time to do everything they can, including lifting grease. Pre-treat all your surfaces with a multi-purpose cleaning spray, then walk away for at least 10 minutes. And when you come back to clean, don't scrub, but wipe instead.
- Clean your bathroom once a week. Steady maintenance helps keep mildew, mould, bacteria, and soap-scum from building up. Regular cleaning is also quicker, easier and much less time-consuming. A quick wipe each night before bed is a good step to be added to your routine if you want to walk into a fresh-looking bathroom the next morning.
- Load all your bins with multiple liners. Line every wastebasket in your home with two or three bags in one go. When you notice any one receptacle getting full, you can snatch the top bag on your way out of the room without needing to dig through the pantry for a replacement.
- Before you sit down to dinner fill any pots, pans or casserole dishes with warm, soapy water, and let them soak in the sink or on the counter while you eat to cut down on clean-up after the meal.
- Finally, buy cleaning products in scents you actually like so you are more likely to use them on a regular basis.

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