Friday, April 25, 2008


Yesterday, I spent over two hours cleaning a bathroom. Why, you say, would I do that? Well, the farmhouse's former tenants were three men who were working on a golf course by day and eating greasy food by night. Oh, and by the looks of it, they never cleaned the bathroom. Here's a picture of the tub after cleaning it...

it's not so bad! Now, when I clean, I usually start with the less toxic products and work my way up to the more toxic things. Yesterday I started with Green Works all purpose cleaner and a green scratcher (as I grew up calling those green abrasive pads) with a sponge on its back. I thought it was all rust stains and wouldn't come off, because I assumed that the bathroom had been cleaned some time in the past two years. Au contraire! These men thought that as long as only their feet touched the filth, it didn't count, I suppose! To my surprise, as I scrubbed and applied elbow grease liberally, the red gunk came off! I discovered that it was just an industrial layer of soap scum and red dirt! Well, at least the tub wasn't stained. I finished with Comet with bleach scrubbing powder. Toxic, yes, but effective! I still need to get a toothbrush and clean in corners and around fixtures, but it's miles better than this:

Et voila! A clean sparkling bathroom... sort of. Oh, bonus: I lost three pounds with all that scrubbing and sweating! No joke.


  1. Everything looks great! I've told lots of people here about and everyone has questions as to particulars.
    How did they find it?
    Where is it compared to where they were?
    I hope you will write the story soon!
    Love to all,
    Jen in CO

  2. I wonder how the landlord could let you have the place when it needed all that cleaning!? And painting. I remember renting lots of places that weren't cleaned to my standards(or yours either, by the look of it!) but at least there was a semblance of cleaning. I hope you are getting a break on the rent or something good for all the work you are putting into the place. Maybe you should consider buying it, or rent with an option to purchase? And I use a toothbrush cleaning too. :)

  3. We are getting something good! We're getting a great place to live, plus the landlord is giving us basically this month free to "renovate" and stuff. He's also providing all the trim paint. I think monetarily that's worth about $1700, at least! Not a bad trade off, if you ask me!

  4. Well I think he is getting the better end of it, if you ask me! You are putting a lot of work into that place and I hope he appreciates it. But I know, you are doing the work for you, and rightly so. Still, if you end up liking the place a lot, you might want to consider an option to purchase for later, although a lot depends on future plans, etc. etc.

  5. I'm just feeling thankful for the time we get to spend there. The farm is part of a conservation easement, and as such, cannot be subdivided, so I cannot ever buy the house, unless I managed to purchase the entire 500 acre farm, which isn't going to happen, I'd bet on it. I lived a long time as a military spouse and I put money every year into homes that were owned by the government, knowing I'd never reap the benefits... but since the families that had lived there before me had done the same, my homes were always wonderful! Sometimes, a little money and a lot of hard work is worth it! Even when you don't get a financial return on the investment. Besides, I'm not spending much money, and to spend the time to make a house a home is an investment in my family's happiness!

  6. oh it does my heart good to see that kind of clean! Thank you thank you for taking a "before" shot too. When I saw the finished product I thought "gee, I wonder how bad it was..." and I scroll down and voila! ; )

    Thanks for've inspired me-I'm off to clean my stovetop! : )

  7. I love your blog Melissa...the bathroom looks are amazing!!!