12 Secrets to a Clean House With Minimal Effort

It's no secret that I'm a bit OCD and a clean freak. Frankly, I wear it like a badge of honor on my sleeve. It goes back to childhood, but fully manifested itself in college, where, from time to time, my friends enjoyed giving me a bit of grief about it. Fortunately, I can accept a bit of good natured ribbing about it, although it never deters me.

Here's the crazy part about me being a clean freak: I hate to clean. I mean it. With every ounce of my soul, I cannot stand the routine everyday cleaning, vacuuming, dusting, laundry, and dishes. Weird, huh? I know. I'm not crazy though. My mom had me tested.

Although I loathe the everyday routine cleaning, I love the semi-annual deep cleaning I do every spring and fall. Part of it has to do with changing my wardrobe, but I love taking the opportunity to purge things I no longer need or want (I give items in good condition to charity) and scrub my house from top to bottom. I did this last weekend and it included mopping the bathroom floor on my hands and knees and cleaning the baseboards with a toothbrush. And I was giddy doing it. Again, I'm not crazy. My mom really did have me tested.

People often ask me how I manage to keep my house so clean without spending hours a week doing it and today is your lucky day. I'm feeling generous. Without further ado, here are my 12 Secrets to a Clean House.

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    Jessica Gardner

    A native of Chicago's Northwest Suburbs and resident of the North Shore, Little Merry Sunshine comes by her name honestly. The story goes that as a child, she was always so happy that she even slept with a smile on her face. Her mom nicknamed her Little Merry Sunshine. It stuck, along with her insatiable desire to focus on the good in the world and to leave it a little better than she found it. She does this by sharing her passions and dreams, what inspires her, and maybe you too, and furthering the discussion about how we can listen to our better angels. You can reach her at LittleMerrySunshineCN[at]WowWay[dot]com.

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