Grandma-Approved Cleaning Techniques For A Cozy Home

by Texas Homesteader ~

Life is busy & days seem so crammed that many people struggle to keep a tidy house. But maybe there’s an easier way. We can learn to clean like grandma did.

I’m nowhere the housekeeper grandma was, but here are a few things we do here on our Homestead that grandma would surely approve of…

Why have we complicated cleaning? Here are a few cleaning techniques at our Homestead that grandma would surely approve of. #TexasHomesteader

Even with today’s fast-paced lifestyle we can all learn a thing or two about cleaning from grandma.

Here are a few tips grandma surely kept in her cleaning arsenals to keep a tidy home.

A Tidy Bedroom, A Place Of Tranquility

It’s said that your bedroom is supposed to provide a feeling of peace & tranquility. It’s the place you come to rest, to sleep, to rejuvenate.

I’ve read that a tidy bed with all linens straightened will bring calm when you enter the room. A calm that helps to relax you in preparation for a good night’s sleep.

Oh how I wanted to be one of those “Make The Bed Every Day” kind of people.  But it seemed I just never had the time to make the bed. 

How Long It Actually Takes To Make The Bed

I was a young mom with two active kids to try to get fed & dressed for school while I tried to squeeze in enough time to dress myself for work. Before I knew it each morning, time flew & it was time for us to leave. 

With a sigh I glanced at my (yet again) unmade bed. I simply didn’t have enough time to make the bed this morning (again).

But then I decided to time myself making the bed. You know, just to find out how much time it *really* takes.

And it took…  TWO MINUTES!




Make your bed daily. Why have we complicated cleaning? Here are a few cleaning techniques at our Homestead that grandma would surely approve of. #TexasHomesteader

Heck two minutes wouldn’t make a difference in my schedule. Even if I was late to work, it was only a TWO MINUTE difference. I never looked back.

My bed is now made every day and it’s true that it does make a difference in the calmness you feel when you enter your bedroom.

And when my bed is tidy, I automatically keep the rest of the bedroom tidy too. No clothes on the floor, no clutter on the dresser. Just a nice clean bedroom.

Cleaning Tip: Clean As You Go

Grandma was always cleaning as she went along her day. Dishes were placed in soapy water as she was preparing supper to speed cleanup afterward. 

Laundry was folded and put away when it came off the line. And before she went to bed each night she did a quick glance through the house picking up newspapers or empty cups.

Don't complicate cleaning. Wash and put away laundry immediately afterward. #TexasHomesteader

Delayed Cleaning Means MORE Cleaning!

In my younger days I was so busy I’d let things slide during the week. Instead I’d do all my house cleaning on weekends. 

But it’s true that clutter attracts more clutter. Waiting to clean the house all at one time is bound to result in MORE cleaning. 

The more you can pick up throughout the day, the less likely it is that extra clutter will accumulate as well.

Oh and as a (huge) added bonus – your entire Saturday won’t be consumed with catching up on housecleaning. 

Why Has Cleaning Become Complicated?

There are several old-time tried & true cleaning methods I use in our home.

The most important is the belief that there doesn’t have to be a specialty product purchased to clean each & every different kind of surface. 

Lysol and other chemicals. #TexasHomesteader

I wonder why we’ve complicated cleaning these days? 

Effective Cleaning Using Spray Bottle And Soap/Water

I have a repurposed spray bottle that I’ve mixed about a cup of grease-cutting dish soap & filed the rest with water.

This soapy water cleans pretty much anything I need it to: counter tops, floors, sinks. 

Why have we complicated cleaning? Here are a few cleaning techniques at our Homestead that grandma would surely approve of. #TexasHomesteader

But it really shines when I’m trying to wash a single dish.

It seems even a tiny squirt of soap is still way too much for a single dish. The soap/water mixture means I don’t have to try to squirt a tiny amount of dish soap, clean that one dish & then rinse & rinse. (and RINSE!) 

Instead I simply wet the dish, spray the surface with my soapy water and use a wet rag or a Home-Grown Luffa Scrubby to thoroughly clean inside & out & rinse.  Done!

Baking Soda Is A Safe Non-Toxic Scrubbing Powder

For extra scrubbing power I keep a small container of baking soda in my cleaning arsenal too.

A box of baking soda and a spray bottle of dish soap and water cleans most areas of your home. #TexasHomesteader

When I need a little extra scrubbability I sprinkle baking soda on it. I’ve found it works great!

Oh and it’s non-toxic and super cheap too. Those will always be a winning combination in our home and for our budget!

Cleaning Windows or Mirrors With Newspaper

Lastly I have a small spray bottle of diluted vinegar in my cleaning supplies. My 50/50 diluted vinegar spray bottle and some crumbled up newspapers make my windows and mirrors shine!

Once again – cheap and non-toxic. 

Non-toxic cleaning tips - clean windows and mirrors with vinegar and newspaper #TexasHomesteader

Aaaahhhh – I’m seeing a pattern here!

Infusing Vinegar With Citrus For Cleaning

RancherMan doesn’t care for the scent of vinegar. At all!

So oftentimes I’ll infuse plain white vinegar with citrus peels to give it a delightful orangy scent.

Vinegar can be infused with citrus for a nice scent while cleaning. #TexasHomesteader

I find that the citrus aroma doesn’t linger in the infused vinegar for the long term. But I typically have orange peels to ramp up the scent from time to time.

Find Your Clean-House Balance

Grandma kept her home immaculately clean. I’m not the homemaker grandma was and I deal with different cleaning challenges.

Living off a dirt road here at our beloved Homestead means constant dust, and dust bunnies too.

Our beloved homestead in Northeast Texas. #TexasHomesteader

And wood-floor cleaning is a constant, especially with the tiny pieces of grass that comes in on the pup’s feet.

So we do the best we can to keep on top of that. But sometimes it feels like a losing battle. However we’ve struck a happy clean-home balance.

Our home is almost always tidy: The bed is always made, the supper dishes are always done, and counter-top clutter, junk mail, etc is tackled throughout the day.

Grandma-Approved Cleaning Techniques. Don't complicate cleaning, see our cleaning tips #TexasHomesteader

Your happy balance will probably look different than ours. But using these simple tips it will be easier to find that balance for you & your family.


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15 thoughts on “Grandma-Approved Cleaning Techniques For A Cozy Home

  1. Jenny Ballard

    My dogs have a bartering system they work by. They pick up all the crumbs and leave hair in its place. Lots and lots of hair. I often tell my adult kids that a made bed is more comfortable and at my age, I need all the comfort I can get. I too am a vinegar and baking soda cleaner, although I’m not against a little bleach at times. Interestingly, my Miss 18 has been showing her boyfriend all the things he can do with a cheap bottle of vinegar instead of all the toxic and expensive cleaners he usually uses. Yes, I am one proud Mumma.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      LOL Jenny – the bartering system your dogs have come up with sounds fair enough… Bailey’s pretty good about making sure no food is ever left on the floor too. And props to Miss 18 on her financial moxie at such a young age, you’re right to be proud of her! ~TxH~

  2. candace Ford

    Boy, all you girls make me tired just reading what you wrote. I use white vinegar for the toilet bowls and mixed w/ dawn dish soap for the weird streaks in the shower from our water. The counters in my hideously teeny kitchen always have too much stuff on them. My grandmother was a neat freak but toward the end things were not as clean as she thought. One time she said to me that every night she prayed that my mother would clean her house and my dear sweet aunt would lose weight (her house was always tidy) I laughed at that – when my mother had to move to a care facility she wanted me to bring her something and she said “look on the floor behind my chair – important papers I toss over my shoulder behind my chair and trash (cookie wrappers) I toss in front of it.” I had to go through every single item and the system obviously didn’t work the way she envisioned it. My darling aunt never lost much weight despite trips to weight loss places and all. I don’t worry over much. The big black dog keeps the kitchen floor hoovered up pretty well and we don’t generate tons of dishes but they all hide out in the DW. I do actually use white vinegar for a number of things, you can kill weeds with straight vinegar.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Had to snicker at that filing system, Candace! 😀 Bailey does a pretty nifty job of keeping any food off the floor too, helpful for eliminating ant problems and such. I don’t consider myself a neat freak (although I have many family members who are). I’m typically happy with having what I call a ‘tidy’ home. The bed’s always made and dishes typically at least loaded in the dishwasher, counters wiped down, no counter clutter, etc. But living in the country I swear the dust bunnies will be the death of me! So the wood floors and dusting are on an ‘as needed when we can no longer pretend they don’t exist’ basis. HA! ~TxH~

  3. Kathryn

    It’s so true, making the bed in the morning seems to set the tone for the whole day!

  4. Debra Nelson

    I have learned to just do the best that I can and not get so anxiety ridden that I drive everyone crazy….LOL!!! BUT, I do clean as I go, in the kitchen! I canned this afternoon….fresh chicken and some Kielbasi….also have a large pot of cored and cut apples to turn into applesauce/butter for canning. There is not ONE dirty dish in the kitchen. Before I start, I fill the sink with VERY hot soapy water and wash as I go. Being VERY hot, the water stays warm throughout the entire process and I stay happy!!

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Washing as you go in the kitchen during those big cooking/canning projects really helps keep me from feeling so overwhelmed too Debra. To finish hours of canning and then look with dismay at the total disaster in the kitchen sure takes the steam out of your sails! ~TxH~

  5. Mrs Shoes

    OMG, I feel shamed to admit that I STARTED cleaning windows in the Spring, and there are still 5 that need done plus a double garden door. By all rights, I should re-do the other too…
    My mother is Queen of Clean, she most def would not approve. The saying in our family is that not ever HOSPITALS are “Gramma Clean”.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Ugh, windows. Yep I need to do ’em too. I always wait until after the spring storms because out here the wind & rain picks up mud and splatters the windows anyway during the stormy season. So I typically do the windows around the end of May. Yep, guess I’m behind too… I love the saying in your family. It’s good to know there are others who lived with/around those extreme neatniks too. My neatnik grandma was a registered nurse so clean just ran through her veins I think. ~TxH~

  6. Gina Dube

    How much dishwashing soap to water? I would love to have this around for quick clean-ups.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      I just eyeball it Gina, I’ve never measured. But for this standard-size spray bottle (repurposed Windex bottle) I will fill 3/4 with water, turn the Dawn bottle over & squeeze firmly for 3-5 seconds, then fill the rest with water. =That keeps all the dish soap from sitting at the bottom & needing to be mixed too hard all the way from the bottom. Works great for me! ~TxH~

  7. Cindy McElroy

    While my house is tidy, it is not clean. I have 4 kids and 2 dogs. We live in the country. We homeschool. The doors on our house get quite a workout. Please, don’t try to eat off the floor! I use the same cleaning products and everything is picked up, usually (the toddler loves to scatter things about). All beds are made, every day. My picky point is the kitchen counters. If they are cluttered; it drives me nuts! I enjoyed your article. It encouraged me.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Living out in the country & having a busy lifestyle means tidy is an awesome accomplishment Cindy. Especially with kiddos. But tidy is what I strive for as well. I don’t like clutter, but dang the dust out here is never-ending! ~TxH~

  8. marie watson

    Tammy, I have never thought of keeping Dawn and water in a spray bottle for cleaning and washing single dishes. I do use vinegar and baking soda though.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      That spray bottle of dishwashing liquid/soap is my go-to cleaning product Marie, both for washing a single dish as well as shining up the countertops, sink, stove, spot-cleaning my tile floor, etc. Just enough soapy action to clean beautifully without being so much it’s hard to rinse the soap off. Sometimes I wonder if I should put it in a fancier spray bottle but then I think “Meh – it’s a cleaning spray bottle!”. Plus, you know, I hate to throw this whatsit away just to replace it with another whatsit for environmental reasons. ~TxH


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