Most people these days are looking for ways to shave a few minutes off their busy schedules and to make routine tasks a bit quicker. It’s easier to live a healthier lifestyle if you can make it simple and quick. Here’s some handy tips for saving time on some common household chores:
Task: Peeling potatoes and carrots.
Time-saving tip: Don’t bother. Much of the nutritional content in root vegetables is contained just under or in the skin, and a lot of the useful dietary fibre is found there, too. Just give the spuds and carrots a quick scrub and maybe chop off a few nasty bits (this includes any green in potatoes – the green bit is often poisonous. In red/pink potatoes, the poisonous green bit looks browny-purple). Then do whatever you want to do with them. Or just eat the carrots raw!
Task: House cleaning – underneath the stovetop elements (electrical stove)
Time-saving tip: Line the “bowl” beneath the element with aluminium foil. When it gets black and dirty, all you have to do is remove the dirty foil and replace it with fresh. This has the added advantage of making your stovetop element more efficient: the foil will reflect heat back at the bottom of the saucepan where you need it.
Task: Sorting and folding the washing once it’s dried.
Time-saving tip: When you hang the washing out on the line (which you are doing, aren’t you? This is so much cheaper than using a dryer, and the clothes smell better and don’t have static problems), sort the washing as you peg them out. This takes no more time than hanging them out normally. When you take them down, give them a quick fold as you put them into the basket – which will also make them fit into the basket better – and they’ll be sorted ready to go.
Task: Giving the bath a big once-a-week scrub to get rid of that grey ring.
Time-saving tip: Avoid bath oils, which can really stick and be a problem. If you don’t have a problem with sensitive skin or don’t mind bending your “all natural” principles a bit, use bubble bath (shampoo works nicely as a bubble bath, but don’t use dishwashing detergent, whatever you do!) for a luxurious bath that helps do some of the cleaning up. If you want something a bit more natural, then use bath salts – these are easy to make using ordinary table salt and a bit of essential oil.
Task: Sorting the junk mail
Time-saving tip: Keep a waste paper basket – for paper only – near the front door or (if your letter box is on the street) near the place where you come in the door after collecting the post. All junk mail goes straight into the waste paper bin ready to be recycled. Don’t bother reading it unless you spot something that really catches your interest (which tends to be in the minority).
Golden rule for saving time: When it comes to cleaning, doing it little and often is much easier than doing one big cleaning service. Yes, you may still have a day for giving the house the once-over, but you can save so much time on this by doing lots of little two-minute tasks at odd points during the day. This includes wiping soap scum off taps, wiping off smears from the bench top or stove top, etc.