Time for Spring Cleaning!

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The snow starts melting away, the days start getting longer, the sun shines brighter, and the air smells crisp and clean. Spring is when everything goes from white and grey to green and yellow, it is a time of rebirth, rejuvenation, and regrowth. After surviving a particularly harsh winter this year, I think we are all just about ready to bust out of our snow forts and dance in the rain!

During the winter months, the lack of sun exposure helps our pineal glands produce more melatonin, which makes us sleepy. Once our bodies are exposed to sunlight, the amounts of melatonin produced is reduced dramatically which is why we tend to feel less drowsy once spring finally decides to pop up!

So – it’s finally time to take a big stretch and pull yourself out of winter hibernation mode, open up your windows to replace the old stale air with some new fresh air. However, upon opening your windows and letting all this amazing sunlight into your living room, you are now able to see all the dust that has collected all over your shelves for the past 4 months, and worse… the cobwebs that have accumulated on your ceilings – gross! This is when most people go into spring cleaning mode, pulling out the couch and get rid of the animal-fur tumbleweeds, organizing all the cabinets and closets in the house and sweeping up all the dirt and sand that has managed to find its way under all your furniture and rugs.

Spring cleaning is no new concept, the Iranian and Jewish cultures started “spring cleaning” centuries ago. In Iran, the New Year – now known as Rouz – is a time of regeneration for Iranians; they use symbols like burning and planting to signify renewal and optimism for a new season. It’s also a time for refreshing and reinvigorating life – which includes your home. Iranians take Rouz very seriously – to prepare for this event, they spend the two weeks prior to Rous scouring every area in their home including knick-knacks, rugs, bedding and every cabinet in every room! They buy new clothes and bring in fresh flowers so that the New Year can properly arrive.

So now that we have a better understanding of why you feel the need to spring clean, here are some tips to make your life a little easier during these hectic cleaning times.

Organizing your closet! Seems simple right? I have a rule for whenever I clean my closet, if I haven’t worn it since the last time I cleaned in there, it’s time to go! Color coordinating your closet can help you speed up the outfit-deciding portion of your morning routine and will make your closet more appealing on the eyes.

Wipe your painted walls down with a wet sponge and some soapy water (a squirt of dish soap in a large bucket works wonders.) You will be surprised on how quickly your walls can get dirty, stained and dusty – especially in kitchens and bathrooms.

Bringing in new pillows for your couch and new curtains for your living room will help spice and spruce up any home without costing you too much money. It can help change the feel of the room by adding in accent colors. If the budget doesn’t call for new items, give them a good scrub. Most curtains can be put in the washing machine on a gentle/hand wash setting.

Get your rugs and wood floors clean! Rugs can be a pain, but many home improvement stores allow you to rent rug cleaners at a reasonable cost. Smaller area rugs can be thrown into a washing machine on a cold cycle and then hang dry. Using club soda helps clean up most dye or acid based stains out of carpeting without ruining the fibers, milk will help remove blood, and a small amount of regular laundry detergent in some water w will usually help remove most oil and dirt stains. For wood floors I use Murphy’s Oil Soap with a damp mop, also – I am  obsessed with Holloway House Quick Shine Multi-Surface Floor Finish… I use it on wood and tile floors, bay window, and the kitchen table; you can apply multiple layers for added protection and shine.

Make sure to also wash those windows and mirrors! If you have older windows, this may be more of a challenge – however most newer windows allow you to pull and rotate them inwards to make cleaning both sides a breeze. I prefer to use a foaming glass cleaner made by Sprayway and a lint free towel. Don’t have any lint-free towels laying around? Try wrapping a coffee filter around a small wad of paper towels – this will reduce the amount of those annoying pieces of lint that get left behind from washing windows with regular paper towels drastically.

My last tip for spring cleaning – play your favorite type of dancing music while you clean, I suggest Michael Jackson! It will help keep your energy up and motivation going when you have something to sing and dance along to. Music is known to have an interesting effect on the perception of time, it helps keeps you mind distracted and thus you are less likely to notice you have spent the entire afternoon cleaning the house.

The Good Wife

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As you all know by now, I think way too much.  So I was pondering my relationship with WJJ.  I thought, “Am I a good wife?”  From there, I had to define, “What is a good wife?”

When we look at our marriage vows, I hope we all certainly believe in those fundamentals.  You know, “I Tiffany take you Walter to be my husband to have and to hold from this day forward, for better or for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish; from this day forward until death do us part.”  Although WJJ and I are not sure we ever really exchanged vows but that’s a whole other story. Certainly, at this stage of our lives, those vows are the foundation of our marriage.

But let’s get back to my question, “What is a good wife?” In trying to simplify this I broke it down to four categories.  The four categories are:  Wife, Friend, Lover and Girlfriend.  Let me try my best to define them for you.

1. Wife: To me a wife (or husband) is someone who supports the relationship. They also do the little “niceties.”  I usually make WJJ coffee – he gasses up my car. I give him a morning “kiss” and little backrub. I make the nightly martinis. He does the cooking and the dishes. The list goes on and on.  We are Husband and Wife. In this category I give myself a solid A.

2. Friend: A friend is someone with whom you can confide in and talk to about anything and everything. They are trustworthy and loyal. A friend is also the person with whom you can do fun activities like going to the movies, shopping, lunch, dinner etc.  A friend is always there to protect and defend you. So as I rated myself in the “Wife-Friend” category, I got another A.  Hey, I’m on a roll.

3. Lover comes next.  I won’t go into detail but based on our 40+ years of marriage and of course our business, I would rate myself a B+. I’m sure WJJ would probably say, “More would be better!”

So far, so good.

4. Finally, Girlfriend: Tell you right now I’m giving myself a C- !  Yep a C -! Sure when WJJ and I are going out, I make sure I dress for HIM!  Whether we’re going to LaMer or Assagio’s, I try my best to look my best for Walter. I also make sure that most evenings, I have my hair and makeup done for dinner (Note, I said most). But I realized that I don’t do enough special “Girlfriend stuff.” If we were dating and I really wanted to have a long term commitment with WJJ, I would put a whole lot more effort in the relationship. I’d spend less time on my computer and more time in his company. I would certainly ensure that I added romance and spontaneity into our everyday life. I would NOT be wearing my terry cloth cover-up until noon just because I was busy. I would send him little love notes and buy him cute pressies. I would make sure that I focused more on him and less on others. I would laugh louder at his jokes and listen more intently to his every word. Hmmm, in fact I remember doing all those things……often…so many years ago. And I still do lots of those things just not often enough. So I’m a C- as a girlfriend. In order to make the Wife High Honor Roll, I better get that up to a solid B really soon. I know I can do it! Less time on other ‘stuff’ more time on WJJ.  That’s simple.

So,  how do you rate yourself on the Wife High Honor Roll?

“I Love UndercoverWear!”

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March was a busy month for UndercoverWear and we had many visitors in the home office. Some of those visitors were Agents, Jenn Rudd, Fiona Addy, and Maryann Hofing. These ladies all achieved the special I Love UndercoverWear promotion during September and October and were successful in both sales and recruiting. Just a few weeks ago they celebrated their success with an all-expense-paid trip to Boston, MA. Now why would anyone choose to visit Boston in March during a frigid, cold winter? Well these lucky ladies were wined and dined, hung out with the home office staff, took a tour of Macy’s department store and went on a $1,000 shopping spree!

Jenn explained, “Never in a million years would I have ever dreamed of this. When the opportunity presented itself, I immediately wanted it, so I went out and did what I needed to do. I did my job!” When she set her personal goal to achieve this promotion, there was no stopping her,  and Fiona was right there with her. Fiona also never thought something like this would happen to her. She rejoined UndercoverWear and as she said, “Set my focus, dug in, and wouldn’t give up until I achieved!”

While these ladies were new to this promotion, Maryann had a little experience, “This was my 3rd time achieving the I Love UndercoverWear promotion and until you do, you cannot imagine what it is like. Walking through a store and picking up garment after garment, creating new looks for business, casual, and fun outfits – oh my goodness it is amazing!”

So what did these ladies get during their shopping sprees? Jenn has been continuously working on bettering herself so she wanted the outside to match the inside. She picked out sophisticated dresses, jackets, pants, and tops. Fiona was a bargain shopper and managed to get $1,800 worth of clothes, shoes, bags, perfume, and of course bling! Then of course Maryann chose to find items to coordinate with UndercoverWear’s new Ultimate Maxi. It’s a convertible item and can be worn as both a dress and skirt! Maryann found some great leopard print jackets and shirts to match. All in all it was a very successful shopping trip!

Hear from the winners themselves: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T5h6N9whKUg

Plus, see another I Love UndercoverWear achiever, Gina Pratico and hear how she chose an alternate prize! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=usvUHxQdA0Y

 

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