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Remember when I did my Towels and Toilets post, way back at the beginning of the year? That was to be motivated to deep clean portions of my house, and Tuesdays were my “towels and toilets” day. (You haven’t heard much more about that because, well, that wagon left me behind. Sigh.)

Anyway, I’m giving you this post today because it sort of fits in with my cleaning routines for Tuesdays (even though I haven’t actually followed said routine since, oh, I dunno….. winter?). Now, I’m not one to talk about cleaning supplies much, so this is obviously huge. (PS – I am not getting paid to do this post. I just was amazed with the product and wanted to share it with you!)

Ok, backstory….. I hate my toilets. We have well water here and the hard water stains/rings on the toilets have been there forever. I’ve scrubbed with I don’t know how many different chemicals and powders and cleaning solutions, all to no avail. The stains just would not come off. I was resigned to a life of constantly dirty-looking (although scrubbed clean) toilets.

Then, I read about this handy product in a cleaning blog. (Yes, I read a cleaning blog. I’m a nerd.) It’s called a Pumie Toilet Bowl Ring Remover, and it’s a miracle worker. (They are on Amazon, not sure but I assume elsewhere as well.) I bought it, and Hubby laughed at me. “Hope you didn’t spend more than a quarter on it cuz it’s never gonna work” was his response when I whipped it out to try it. Little did he know, this stick is magic! In fact, I called him into the bathroom to inspect the first toilet after I used it, and he was literally speechless. So, before I ran and scrubbed the second toilet in our house, I had an “a-ha” moment and thought to take before and after photos, to share with you! Because everyone loves to see toilets, after all! (Ok, I know, it’s kinda gross, but I was so thrilled with it I had to share!)

Here is our other toilet, after being scrubbed with heavy-duty chemical toilet bowl cleaner and a regular toilet bowl scrub brush….. So yes, it’s clean, even though it doesn’t look like it.

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Rings around my toilet bowl, even after significant scrubbing. Sad.
Rings around my toilet bowl, even after significant scrubbing. Sad.
Close-up of my stains. I’m embarrassed to show them, but it must be done!

So, gross, right? I mean, I literally scrubbed extra hard knowing I was going to take a picture to show you guys, and these stubborn stains just won’t budge. But, then along came Pumie, my bathrooms’ new best friend…..

Meet Pumie! It's a pumice on a stick specifically for tough stains. Says it doesn't damage the toilet, so we shall see.....
Meet Pumie! It’s a pumice on a stick specifically for tough stains. Says it doesn’t damage the toilet, so we shall see…..

After some scrubbing with Pumie the pumice stick, I was shocked. Amazed, even. It was a miracle…..

Ta-Da! No more ring around the toilet! First time in forever!!!
Ta-Da! No more ring around the toilet! First time in forever!!!
All sparkly and clean!!
All sparkly and clean!!

For just over $8, it was worth it. Well worth it. It’s basically idiot-proof, so that’s a plus too. You literally just dip it in the toilet bowl to wet it, and rub the stains with the pumice. The pumice wears away as you use it, so it conforms to the shape of the toilet. It’s a game changer in my house. I hated scrubbing the toilets because they never looked clean. Now, it’s like they are brand new. (And I didn’t spend hours scrubbing!)

So, that’s my PSA for the day. You’re welcome!

Summertime!

End of the school year shrapnel.
End of the school year shrapnel.

The last day of school is finally here! You know what that means?

Chaos.

We will suddenly be all together, all the time. Like, for real, not just for a few months. (Silly homeschool idea.) On one hand I’ve been counting down these days. I can’t wait for summer and relaxing and fun and family time (and no more lunch-making)…. But, who am I kidding? I don’t know how to relax. I don’t know how to have fun. And family time? Well, we have to work on that one.

In fact, I vaguely remember last summer thinking “we really have to get some good habits in place so we can start fresh for school in August”. Well, here we are a year later, and no good habits are in place. Or even in site.

So, things are gonna have to change! (Famous last words, right?)

I think baby steps are in order. My kids have very few responsibilities in the house, which is completely my fault for not taking the time to teach them to do things because, let’s face it, it’s so much faster and easier for me to do it myself. However, this will not help them – or me – in the long run. So….. we’re going to get some chore action going on.

First, we need chore training so they know how to do things. Like how to fold clothes and put them away, instead of just jamming them all in the closet. (Speaking of which, we really need to weed out these closets….. Sigh.) So, laundry help is on the list. Peanut has already been in charge of hanging up their shirts since Pumpkin can’t reach. However, at least 25% of all the items she hangs fall on the floor. And then they stay there because, apparently, if it’s on the floor it becomes invisible. The other 75% precariously balance haphazardly from the hangers. And don’t get me started on the lack of organization in their closet. Apparently, they did not get my OCD gene. So, we must learn the best way to fold and hang clothes that are clean.

Kitchen duty – also neglected by the kids, and again my fault. Good news is they are better about clearing their dishes from the table and bringing them to to kitchen. They still need prompting on occasion, but I’ll take it. Now, to work on loading and unloading the dishwasher. This may require intervention by Hubby because I’m someone who loads the dishwasher a certain way. The right way. My way. (Ahem) I may also be someone who constantly rearranges when others put things into the dishwasher. Obviously, this is something I will need to work on in order to get help in the kitchen. (This chore training is apparently just as much for me as for the kids.)

Bedroom and playroom? UGH. We have too much stuff, and I swear I cleaned it all out not that long ago. See, the problem is, my children are packrats. (Which they also *may* have gotten from me. I’m happy to say I’ve become a reformed packrat, but that’s not overly helpful here.) I could easily go in and toss 75% of everything in their possession, but that’s not always a good idea. Anyone have any ideas on that, because I’m at a loss there. And now with it being summer and them around all the time, I can’t be stealthy with my trusty black garbage bags like days past….. So, we have to work on what’s really a treasure and what’s just trash. Not even sure where to start on that one.

There’s also bathrooms, other living spaces, yardwork, oh my! Not to mention a treehouse to build and camping trips to take.

So, that’s where I am at this point on the almost-first-full-day-of summer. I’m in all out panic mode, which, I guess, is pretty typical for me.

But baby steps. Today, I’ll work on figuring out the chore list. The rest of the week and weekend? Off duty and a family meeting to get on the same page. A few days of rest sounds like a good idea right after school is over, and getting input from everyone makes me less of a dictator. But next week?

Boot camp.

Mwahahahahaha

I’ll attempt to keep you updated on any progress (or lack thereof). I have big plans and ideas in my head, but actually implementing them? We’ll see.

Til then – chaos.