Tag Archives: spring cleaning

Spring Cleaning… Going Inside

Let’s bring it inside, and give some attention to the mudroom!

For those of you who don’t yet have a mudroom or designated space, remember that any space that’s tucked just inside your garage door can be transformed into your mudroom. No you do not need to live on a farm to have a mudroom. It’s a de-staging area so the outdoors don’t get tracked indoors. As in kids and messy husbands/partners… oh, and we can’t forget our 4 legged friends!

This space can be a little more difficult because each home is so different. That’s OK!

Each project is going to present a new challenge, and I urge you to create a space or transform what you’re working with into a functional space.  It’s really up to you to make it your own. Make sure that whatever you implement really works for the entire family!

OK,  so are you ready? Let’s dive in.

  1. Think shoes first—keep the shoes you slip into often, as well as the ones that are go-to errand runners, right by the door in your favorite bin or basket. For a more organized look get an actual big shoe organizer, it’s like a piece of furniture and is actually attractive
  2. For backpacks, purses, and to-go bags, depending on your space, a nearby closet might be best for these items. If you’re going the creative route, find the best space on a nearby wall and get some sturdy hooks or pegs or make your own. Pinterest has some great DIY ideas. It’s always wise to make sure to have these items as close to the door as possible. It keeps them out of the way and they’re always handy when you’re in a rush out the door, and you know we are always rushing everywhere, especially if you have kids! Jeez!
  3. If you have a large enough space, create an individualized area to keep homework, paperwork, keys… in other words things that you need to be able to go right to and not hunt around for. Hey, that’s a time saver right there guys! Inside cubbies or shelving is a great option. I love bins and corkboards well! In addition to homework, whether inbound or stored to remember on their way out, this is a great space for you children to keep their favorite papers from school and special art they would like to display… and it doesn’t end up on your refrigerator, adding to cluttered look! Yuck!
  4. If you have space leftover, I love installing lockers or something similar to a mudroom. They keep things out of sight and can also create the perfect space for cleaning supplies, extra light bulbs, extra batteries, even your children’s electronics. The bins that fit above the structure are great for any of those items as well. The whole area will flow so much better and it eliminates the clutter.
  5. Last but not least is a bench if you have the space, we all need a place to sit to put on or take off our boots and shoes, right? Plus you can store hats and gloves in baskets under the bench, optimizing your storage

So that’s your mudroom tutorial, are you inspired yet?

Spring Cleaning Bill of Rights

Since we’re in an election season and it’s Spring time, you should know your rights!

aqc-hopeA clean office is more than a beautiful thing, it’s your right come every spring… okay, so maybe I’m not a poet laureate. Anyway, we all love clean (a quality clean) especially at the office, because we spend so much time in one!

Here are 8 things you have a right to, not just at spring time but year around…

  1. Hand sanitizers – Portable, handy (no pun intended), and they kill germs. What’s not to love, right? A quick swipe on the phone, keyboard, and the places you touch helps you avoid the creeping crud. While you are at it take one with you as you walk through the office and a give a quick swipe to all the surfaces you would touch like door knobs, light switches, the copier, etc.
  2. A tidy desk – Seriously? Yes, less clutter means less germs to spread and less frustration.
  3. A fresh smelling break room fridge – Every fridge should have a laminated sign saying everything left in the fridge on Friday will go into the garbage, containers and all. Then have someone designated to do it, because no one wants to open the door to icebox halitosis and hairy science experiments on Monday morning!
  4. A clean floor – Yes that means vacuuming, sweeping and mopping! This really helps reduce dust and allergens, it’s a must do! And, regular maintenance on your floors also preserves them, reducing the frequency of costly services like stripping and waxing.
  5. Hand washing posters – Yes, people do need to be reminded of this! Amazing in this day and age!
  6. A clean microwave – It’s downright gross – you open the microwave to find someone’s food explosion. Keep it clean, people! Better yet, get a cover to put over your food and it won’t splatter all over… they sell them at the Dollar Store… for a dollar!
  7. Plenty of toilet paper in the bathroom – You can never have enough toilet paper… “can you spare a square?” Do you remember this from Seinfeld?
  8. An empty trashcan – ‘Cause who wants to have their junk all over the place? Yes, trashcans should be emptied nightly, along with recycling (this is Portland after all!), and it will reduce pest control issues and bills.

If your office needs help in any of these areas give AQC a call! You do what you are good at and let us do what we are good at, and we can help you defend your rights and keep your office “Spring Clean!” VOTE FOR AQC!

Spring Cleaning Checklist

You Might Miss Some of the Grossest Things When Spring Cleaning

dirty-keyboardHave you ever really thought about what could be on (or in) your keyboard?

Spring cleaning usually means organizing closets, driving all those boxes labeled “donate” to your local clothing drive, washing down patio furniture, and other big, highly visible projects. So it’s easy to forget about the little things that keep cluttering our lives in our work environment. Here are some unexpected items you should organize, purge, check or spruce up this spring.

Cleaning Supplies

Before you dive into spring cleaning, focus your energy on clearing out your actual cleaning supplies. Good Housekeeping notes that household items actually have shelf lives:

  • Laundry detergent keeps for six months
  • Fabric softener keeps for one year
  • Dish soap will last up to a year and a half
  • Dishwasher detergent lasts three months
  • Disinfectant lasts two years
  • Multi-surface cleaners keep for up to two years
  • Metal polish lasts for two years, but throw it away sooner if it’s lumpy
Emergency Kit

Everyone should have an emergency kit, whether you live in a place with hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes, or any possibility of an unexpected disaster (i.e., every place on earth). If you checked that off your list a few years ago, make sure your batteries still work and your food and medical supplies haven’t expired. Today many of us work from our vehicles so while you’re at it, make a similar emergency kit for your vehicle in case you ever get stuck in an emergency situation.

Your Purse/Bag/Briefcase

Purge your bag of the receipts, gum wrappers, empty mascara tubes, broken hair ties, stale protein bars, receipts, old papers & files and the entire GDP of California in pennies (your back will thank you). Then wipe out the inside & outside with a sanitizer wipe & refill with the essentials.

Car Trunk and Glove Compartment

Empty your trunk of the bag of ill-fitting clothes you meant to take to Goodwill, water bottles, shoes you forgot you owned, and clean up any spills or whatever else landed in there. While you’re at it, it’s time to face the music and pay those parking tickets you shoved into your glove compartment.


Do your employees remember buying the mustard, catsup, mayonnaise, etc. that are sitting in your break room fridge door right now? Probably not… can you say YUCK!?

Make it a company policy that everything needs to be marked with a permanent marker the date it was placed in the refrigerator. Keep a marker on a string attached to the refrigerator for this purpose. Here’s a list of food shelf-life, that you might find handy & can laminate to post next to the marker:

  • Jams/jellies last one year
  • Mayonnaise lasts two to three months after the use by date
  • Hot sauce lasts five years
  • Pickles last one year
  • Soy sauce lasts two years
  • Mustard lasts one year
  • Ketchup lasts six months
Your Keyboard and Mouse

Not to gross you out, but your keyboard and mouse are cesspools of germs and bacteria. Give your keyboard a full clean (not just a cursory wipe-down), and place some disinfecting wipes on your desk to remind you to make this a regular habit.

Your Computer Files

Unless you’re incredibly disciplined, your computer could probably use some organization. Clean up your desktop, but then go deeper: Put completed projects onto external hard drives or the cloud, go through the hundreds of screenshots you can’t remember why you saved, and clean up whatever app you use to keep random notes.

Workspace Spring Cleaning Tips

Whether you have a home office, or commute to a large building downtown, keeping a clean working environment is super important, here are some simple yet effective cleaning tips.

Supplies you will need:

  1. soft micro fiber type cloth
  2. alcohol wipes or rubbing alcohol & cotton swabs
  3. a swiffer hand duster
  4. spray disinfectant or wipes
  5. compressed air
  6. all purpose cleaner

In most office environments, computers and electronic equipment make up a large portion of the work space. Since many of these items are commonly used on a daily or even hourly basis, they often become one of the dirtier pieces in the office. Take the time to wipe down your computer screens with a soft fiber cloth. Use compressed air to remove debris from keyboards, and disinfectant everywhere. Dust your printers, computer towers, telephones, and faxes, and use alcohol wipes or a cotton swab and alcohol on the touch points to halt the spread of any germs going around.


At least once every month, take an hour and remove everything from your desk, including the top, and drawers. Next, apply a basic all purpose cleaner and scrub away. Dust any books, and throw your unneeded documents that have been piling up in the shredder. If you have leather chairs, be sure to wipe them down with disinfectant wipes. Dust where needed.


During your cleaning sessions, take the time to organize your documents and other papers that may be lingering around. As you know, it can be easy for random odds and ends to accumulate around the work place. Weed through these items and set aside the ones you will actually require in the future. The rest should head for the trash, recycling or the shredder. Books and other office items should also be kept in check and arranged accordingly.


Simple tips include keeping a few extra trash can liners in the bottom of the can for replacement purposes when the trash requires emptying. Keep a duster handy in your desk drawer for those days when you just can’t fathom where all the dirt is coming from. Hide a can of disinfectant wipes in a desk drawer as well to quick clean ups when spills occur, or to keep the mouthpiece of your phone fresh and germ free.