Article Written by: Michelle Pawluk, Retention Specialist Spring cleaning can be a daunting task for any homeowner. Let me share some tips with you on how I break it down, and maintain a clean and fresh home using household cleaning products that are human and pet friendly. Organization is everything. You know you’re an adult when you’re asking for bins, baskets, and drawer separators for your birthday. Having an organized pantry, kitchen drawers, and laundry room etc., can save you minutes throughout your day, which add up to hours spent on the weekend or a day off. Organizational items don’t have to be expensive either. Use empty cereal boxes or shoe boxes and cut them down to different sizes that will fit your drawers. Cover them in pretty, heavy duty wrapping paper. Finally, embrace the label maker! It can be your best friend! Cleaning products. I have 4 animals in my house: 2 cats, 2 larger sized dogs, plus a husband who is a farmer. My house gets messy fast! Cleaning products that are green, and pet friendly are expensive. So, I make my own, and trust me it is nothing fancy. My secret? Vinegar. I mix vinegar with water, in a spray bottle, add essential oils, and use it everywhere! Vinegar is gentle enough to use on my laminate floors, yet dissolves dirt and soap scum. White vinegar is a disinfectant and also a natural deodorizer, absorbing odors instead of covering them up. The smell doesn’t last long and leaves behind fresh scents of the orange and lemon oils that I added. Undiluted vinegar works well for hard water deposits and your toilet bowl. Pour some in a plastic bag and using a rubber band, secure around your shower head or faucet and let it soak for a few hours. Rinse and buff with a microfiber cloth and your shower head will be good as new! Create a cleaning chart. Whether your household has everyone chipping in, you’ve assigned certain tasks or chores to specific people, or one person generally takes charge (I feel you-some people, like myself, feel that if it’s not done my way, it’s wrong!) having a cleaning chart can help you stay on track. I printed mine and put it in a plastic protector. This lets me cross things off with a dry erase marker to help me celebrate the small victories. You can download my cleaning chart or use it as a template to make your own. I am a home organization blog junkie, so I created this for my household after reading through many different versions. There are also many free printable charts online. If one of those works for you, why reinvent the wheel right?Cleaning is a chore, but having a fresh, organized and clean home, doesn’t have to take up all your time. A few minutes throughout your day will save you from the mad rush we’ve all done when we get that call from a friend saying they’re stopping by for a surprise visit. Pump some music, and fold that laundry!