What Every Mom Needs to Know about Spring
Winter is over! I can officially say this because the temperature is supposed to climb to 17 degree Celsius in Toronto today. A rare and kind of hard-to-remember type of weather. This winter we had unusually low temperatures which were made worse with some of the heaviest snow and ice storms in years here in Southern Ontario and surrounding areas. Let’s have a quick look at what everyone should look out for to welcome spring. In this article we will discuss spring cleaning and ways to prepare our homes for winter. This exercise will require your undivided attention and will help you get things organized over a weekend. Exciting, isn’t it?
Make a list of things to do
Let’s face it, it was a very cold winter this year and we all cuddled in our homes and bought a lot of clothes and stuff to keep us warm. On top of that since our outdoor activities were so limited, we ended up indoors and as a result generated a lot of junk that we will have to discard. Since you are a mom, you do know that the kids also accumulated a lot of junk, from paper to clothing, shoes and snowboards to a ton of other junk that you will have to deal with. So to make things easier, always plan ahead and start with a list of items to do.
You don’t need all those clothes (and accessories)
A lot of your clothes have gone through a tough winter, you will notice wear and tear and some have changed sizes. Same applies to your children’s clothes and shoes even more as they have grown up and chances are that they may not need or use them the next winter. Make a decision about getting rid of them in a responsible way. If such items are reusable, clean and wash them and donate to one of your local charities. You will help someone in need and at the same time got rid of your extra junk in an eco-friendly way. Kidney Clothes Donation Program , Salvation Army and Canadian Diabetes Association are great organizations who accept unwanted clothing and some even provide pickup from your house or you may drop them in their drop boxes in your area.
Remember that even recycling will damage the environment as the carbon production and energy waste will hurt our environment. So think reuse as much as you can. If you cannot find a charity, there are always family members and friends who may find a use for such items.
Cleaning the house – get rid of junk, carpet steaming, grout cleaning, bathrooms
Our homes have to bear the brunt of the winter cold in the inside. Every house or apartment will have dealt with wet or muddy shoes, dirty carpets, dusty windows and so on. Your job is to make sure they are all clean. While you might be tempted to do all of these things yourself, it is always a good idea to bring in a professional to do the job. Make sure you have cleared the house from the excess junk and unwanted stuff occupying space, bring in a professional carpet cleaner to clean and steam your carpets and steam clean your grouts and other hard to clean surfaces. Bathrooms will also need special attention with fixing the winter wear and tear. Remember to leave all your windows open for a full day after you have cleaned the inside of your house.
You also should check for the presence of mold in your home. This pesky fungus likes environments with a lack of fresh air and winter provides a perfect opportunity for them to grow and multiply. They are usually found in the basements and under the windows but they could grow on any surface. Their presence not only creates a foul smell but is also harmful to human and animal health. You should consult with a professional to remove significant mold growth and make sure to keep your windows open at least 1 hour every day to allow enough fresh air in to deal with that problem.
Critical checks – ducts, furnace, AC, foundation, roofs
As we have already established, it was a bad winter and we have endured hard and for long to welcome this spring. Our homes have suffered badly on the outside as they braved the elements. Folks living in houses have bigger living spaces compared to those living in condos and apartments but they also have bigger responsibilities. In addition to shoveling snow, and a lot of it this year, they also have to worry about external problems to the building. Think roof. Check the shingles, presence of any leaks or any other problems and bring in a professional roofer to fix any issues found. If you had any leaks in the basement, bring in a professional foundation or concrete specialist to look at your foundation for presence of cracks or holes and have them fix those concerns.
Similarly, inspect your furnace to make sure it is in tip-top condition. You do know that carbon monoxide poisoning is fatal and you do not take any chances with that. Bring in a reliable professional to fully inspect your furnace. While you are at it, have someone professionally clean your ducts and air ventilation. You do not want to breathe all the dust and dirt sitting in your air vents. In preparation for, hopefully, a warm summer, get your air conditioner inspected and make sure it was not damaged during the winter cold. Call your local trades organization to recommend professionals for these areas if you do not know them, or google them.
Backyard – gardening, seeds, preparation
OK, so now let’s talk about the fun stuff. If you are a mom and you love gardening then this might be a means of relaxation for you. Ensure that the grounds are not frozen or snow covered, remove the excess dirt or plastic that may have accumulated under the snow and check that the ground surface is soft. By the end of April or beginning of may, you should think about fertilizing your lawn. Your local hardware store will recommend and provide the tools you may need to fertilize the grounds, and you can buy seeds from local grocery stores if you wish to plant flowers or vegetables in your garden.
Shopping for Spring – BBQ, Patio, backyard, pool etc
No on to the real fun stuff. If you have cleaned up the home, made up the space needed, taken care of all the critical things around the property, now you may make a list of items that you will need to buy for the spring and summer. We know that guys can not wait to start backyard BBQs and for that make sure to bring out your grill from the storage or buy a new one if you need to. Clean your patio and fix any nails or broken wood, ask for help if you have to. If you have a pool, make sure you take out all the dirt and leaves that may have accumulated over the fall and winter and follow your standard procedures for cleaning and preparing the pool.
These were some of our thoughts, but feel free to add any additional tips you may have. Your comments are welcome!