Monday, February 29, 2016

Cleaning with Samma

Hi Dee Ho and Happy Leap Day Peeps!!

I know I still haven't posted on my San Francisco trip but I haven't forgotten and I promise I WILL get to it!!

Now, let's talk about something no one likes to do but we all gotta do it.  Cleaning the house!!  But before we talk about the dreaded chores of housecleaning let us laugh a bit shall we?

seriously this is so very much ME!!!

Oh yes, don't think those exact thoughts haven't crossed my mind!

This one is especially true right now- I'd rather be in the yard or garden than in the house.

I'm going to share with you a few tips and products that help me clean my house. First of all contrary to my family's belief.....  I detest cleaning but I really detest the feeling I have when someone knocks on my door and my house is a mess.  I mean come on, it's bad enough that they find me in yesterdays clothes and unshowered.

(a side note: some of the photos/descriptions are affiliate links which means I could receive compensation for using those links)

To start things off I want to say that I don't follow FlyLady religiously any longer BUT if you need a place to get started then you won't go wrong with her plan.  I do not work outside the home at this time (not a Payroll SHE) so I'm a bit more flexible with my routines now.   I will tell you that when I was a PayRoll SHE  I followed FlyLady to the very last detail.   If you hate spending your weekends cleaning or nagging your family to help you and are tired of living in CHAOS, sick of tackling Mt. Washmore  and have more HOTSPOTS than you can count then I encourage you to read her site .  She's done the hard part for you in figuring out where to start and how to keep going without burning out.  With that said, I do maintain my routines and I still receive her daily emails and I know when it's time to clean something because she reminds me.  I'm old and my brain is full of wonderful memories  and I don't need to waste valuable brain space remembering when to clean my trash cans.   :-)   (wonder what I was talking about with all those acronyms? click here)

Let's get started with my house cleaning and products because after all, I've got work to do!

This is a product I use daily.  We have very dark granite in the kitchen and our master bath and they smudge and smear so easily.  This stuff is so handy that I just keep a rag with it and spritz those counters down every day.  Plus it smells good too!   

This is just a water/vinegar mixture in a spray bottle.  I use this and a paper towel to wipe down all the mirrors and glass doors in the house weekly.  Keeps things tidy and 1 paper towel will do the entire house unless my people get wild with the dental floss. 

This is my refrigerator and while I love the size it does show every stinking fingerprint and smudge that comes within a ten mile radius.  

This is truly the only stuff that I've found that works this well on stainless steel with NO streaking.  Can I get an amen peeps?!
Be careful of the overspray on your tile floors because it will make them slick.

If it needs scrubbing in our house this is what I'm using. It never scratches the surface yet it does an amazing job and it's pretty inexpensive and can be found anywhere.

All the sinks in the house get the Bar Keepers Friend scrub except our master bathroom sinks and those get this crazy good product.  We have Copper sinks in our bathroom and no kidding I used to spend at least 20 minutes every week cleaning two sinks, now it's 5 minutes tops for both sinks.  
We have very hard water and those sinks get stained so quickly so this little gem is a life saver for me cause Ain't Nobody got time for that kind of cleaning every week!

Hands down my FAVORITE can't live without cleaning product!!! 
They are under every sink in our house.  If you read FlyLady then you know that Swish n Swipe every day is the way to keep your bathroom clean and happy and these are the perfect solution for that.   I swish and swipe the counters and such while I brush my teeth ( I have an electric toothbrush so I'm only using 1 hand). In the kitchen, they get used daily as well.   I mean seriously, I'm the Clorox Disinfecting Wipes poster child.   

This is another FlyLady Swish-n-Swipe tool.  I keep a toilet brush beside every toilet in our house (and mind you that is a total of 6 toilets!!) but in our master bathroom I keep an old large flower vase filled with warm water and some kind of soap and swish around the toilet bowl every day.   Soap is soap people and you can even use up some old shampoo you didn't like.   I don't like to scrub toilets and with a brush standing ready it's easy to do every day.  

Dusting, I employ several methods with dusting.  Daily dusting gets the feather duster and/or Swiffer Disposable Cleaning Dusters then around once a week I grab the ole'Pledge Orange Clean Furniture Spray and give the tops of the furniture a good cleaning. 

Next up is a good vacuum cleaner.  This is one of those things where I encourage you to visit a professional vacuum store, talk with them about your specific flooring situations and then buy the best vacuum you can afford.   Ours is a Miele Complete C3 Marin Canister Vacuum Cleaner.  We have mostly wood or tile floors but the upstairs bonus room and extra bedrooms are carpeted and we have several beautiful wool rugs we inherited such as the one you see in the photo.  We also have a dog and a cat so this particular model was the best choice for us.  I can't tell you enough how going to a vacuum store and working with a professional will ensure that you get the right vacuum for your home and yes, it is an investment.   Once a week my house gets a very good vacuuming but on a daily basis I have this and I love it for the hard surfaces.
and this for the carpeted surfaces

Once those floors get that good weekly vacuuming then it's time to mop and folks I don't mix up different buckets for my various hard floors.  I just put a little warm water and a glug of Murphy Oil Soap in a bucket and grab a good old fashioned mop and go to town.  

As you can see I really don't use a huge variety of cleaning products as the ones I do use get the jobs done for me.  If I need to deep clean then plain vinegar with some of my essential oils added in are all I need. 

Last laugh for the day!!

So are you a clean fanatic? Do you follow FlyLady?  Do you care?    What are some of your best cleaning tips?  I'd love to hear them and share them with all the peeps!!  You know so we can all just drink wine freely.    

Peace, Love & Leap Day

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Traveling with Samma: Waco, Texas

Hi dee ho there peeps!!!!

I know, I know I promised you a Travel post about San Francisco but quite honestly I've been soooo stinking busy that you're getting this one first.  Don't believe me, let me tell you since I last posted on February 9th this is the craziness that has been my life.

Feb. 10th and 11th I spent attempting to restore some semblance of order back to the house at the same time tearing it apart.  We left on Friday with a U-haul trailer loaded to drive down to Austin where we spent the entire weekend moving Court and Aus to their new house.  YAY!!!  No more apartment life for those two AND they got a new puppy.  As luck would not be in our favor we have yet to meet the new fur baby of the family as they left to go get her after we headed back home on Sunday.  

Monday the 15th arrived and Hubster made his usual flight to Tampa and I had a Young Living oils webinar that evening but spent the better part of the day trying to get the laundry caught up from the weekend and reassemble the house.   Tuesday arrived and brought more of the Amazingly wonderful warm February weather so off to the yard I was to work.  You never know when it will be cold again (ahem today) so I wanted to get as much done of the February yard chores as I could.  Then we arrive at Wednesday and LL and I headed down to Waco for a little shopping road trip.  A twist on craft Wednesday if you will.

Where did we go?  Oh, come know where we went!!!!

Yep, our first stop of the day was Magnolia Market Silos.

Let's just blow through the answers to your questions:
1) No, Joanna wasn't there (her mom was not either)
2) No, Chip wasn't there
3) Yes, the store is beautiful
4) Yes, it's worth the drive
5) You couldn't pay me to go on a Saturday, Wednesday was perfect as far as crowds go
6) No pics of the inside of the store because my hands were full- not kidding

Out behind the Silos is this cute little building, I'm not sure what will be housed in it but it sure is cute!  I kind of wish it was in my back yard actually, it'd make a perfect pool house.

The olive buckets were all over the gardens filled with ornamental lettuces' and herbs. 
Made me wish I had about 100 of them myself and of course if you wished to purchase one they were for sale inside the Silos. 

I can't wait to go back in the summer when the garden is in its full glory!!

LL and I conned some young teen boy who was looking very bored to take our picture.  
What I learned from this pic....I need some sun on my legs and I need a haircut really badly!
LL looks totes adorbs as usual!! 

Now to pick a food truck to enjoy!!

 This is the one we settled on. 

The Sic "Em on a Chicken is why we choose this food truck!

This is mine....I ordered mine without the biscuit. You know since I'm not supposed to be eating gluten and all.  (I've cheated a LOT lately though)

This was LL's, she's a lucky duck and got to eat that biscuit!   

This is my haul from Magnolia.
Of course I had to get me a t-shirt ...they are sooooo soft and I had a hard time choosing from the cute options.   That little pear is wood and then the two candle holders are birch wood and my long olive basket.  

You can kind of see my juice glasses better here.  They have farm animals on them and I adore them!!!

I got this vintage looking poster for my kitchen.  $4 bucks people!!!  Once again, so many cute ones to choose from I should have gotten a couple more. 

(sorry for the bad iPhone pics)

After lunch we headed over to Roots Boutique.  I have no pictures but let me tell you....I wish to move in that store!!  And yes, I did actually buy 2 dresses, 1 top and 1 necklace.  Let me tell you that's a BIG shopping day for me for sure!!!

Then as if the day couldn't get better we went round the corner from Roots and found the lovely gem that is known as the Spice Village.  Lordy mercy me people, you need to have more than a few hours for this place.  SO MUCH GREAT stuff you never knew you needed.  Here's just a couple of my purchases.

This is now our new hamper for wet towels in the bathroom.  Thankfully LL talked some sense into me and I got the smaller of the two.  It's just perfect and Hubster even liked it so it's a double winner.
On a side note I only tripped over it like twice after I put it in the bathroom.   You see that door behind it, that's where the potty room yeah, in the dark I tripped over the bucket!

I picked up this mug because like I had to!!  I mean hellooooo not only is it English Bulldogs but it's got a reference to Winston Churchill 

Speaking of Winston Churchill I seem to have left my dear peeps out of his life lately so here he is in his current disposition.  

Is that not the saddest face ever??  He was quite displeased with the weather today. It's raining (we NEED it badly) but Sir Winston is not happy about missing his morning walk.  Sorry Winston, I love you but not enough to walk in the cold windy rain.   

So hopefully this week we'll get you guys caught up with traveling posts and other such things.  

Have you made a road trip to Waco? Do you want to? If you do, just come stay with me and I'll take you.  One last note about Waco and what Fixer Upper and Baylor have down for that city.   We took Abogg down to Baylor in the fall of 2009 and honestly it's like a new place.  Shops are opened back up, buildings refurbished and the city coming back to life.  It's so great to see so many people benefitting from a new football stadium and a TV show.  Crazy how things work out isn't it?

Now I think I should go get dinner made before Hubster eats everything in the house!

Peace, Love & Waco 

Tuesday, February 9, 2016


Hey Peeps

Happy Fat Tuesday!!!!

1) To start things off today I'm going to share my Lent sacrifices/obligations

--) My Facebook time will be limited to once in the morning for 15 minutes, you know to check for birthdays and such, then once more in the evening for no more than 15 minutes.
--) Add one person each day from Facebook posts to specifically pray for onto my prayer list.  I will also actually write this person down instead of keeping up with it in my head like usual.
--) Finally I will write down in my journal 5 things every day that I'm grateful for.

Now some of you may say "hey Samma, aren't you giving up anything?"  And my reply would be....In the past year I've given up gluten/wheat and artificial sweeteners.  You know pizza and diet coke so I'm thinking I've pretty much depleted that pool of food/drink items to give up!!  Besides, I totally fell off the boat during our San Francisco trip on the bread thing and my gut needs some healing time so the bread thing is already a self imposed restriction again that needs to extend beyond Lent.  Next question, "why are you telling us"?  Accountability, nothing more.

2) One afternoon I had me a nice cup of "Man-a-tea"   The little manatee tea infuser hanging off my manatee mug was too much.   I know I crack myself up!!!

3)  Abogg sent me this caffeinated care package for my birthday.   There was a great Starbies gift card and a box full of k-cups.   Even some of my beloved Holiday Blend that will be December before I get to enjoy again in large quantities.  If you come to my house do NOT touch that Holiday Blend.  :-)

4)  Merebear and Court got me this delightful bucket o'stickers.  Seriously I may have a sticker problem.   (see here and here)    (and NO, giving up stickers for Lent is NOT an option-go eat your bread and leave me alone with my stickers)

5) I spaced yesterday and failed to show you the pictures of all the beads I racked up at Mardi Gras.  I told you about them but I totally forgot to show you.  Bad me so here they are.

This is the pile of "throw beads" taking up most of the bar area.
At the far end there are about 6 full ziplock bags of beads.

These are all the other cool things.  By the way, that King Cake plush and the Friar Tuck are two of my favorites.  There are quite a few of the specialty large beads in the photos too. Many of the items were light up or blinks and lots of fun!

6)  I have started getting ready for spring gardening.  This is a photo I posted on Instagram the other day of my eggplants.  Since then I've gotten the spinach seeds and the lettuce started as well.   I have another order coming with the tomato, peppers, peas and broccoli seeds.  This is new for me starting seeds indoors then transplanting but I'm hoping for the best!    The containers I'm starting seeds in?  My old k-cups, I've been saving them for quite some time just sure they would be good for something.  Sometimes hoarding pays off! haha   I'm also expanding my garden to my second floor balcony.  The balcony will be getting some of the things that the bunnies and small creatures like to nibble on, like my broccoli and my lettuce especially.

So hurry along my friends, you have about 1 hour and 45 minutes to stuff yourself with all the things you're giving up for Lent.

Oh yes I do little girl...yes, yes I do!!!

So tell me, what are you guys giving up for Lent? 
See you peeps tomorrow when we're going to talk about San Francisco!

Peace, Love & Gluttony!

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