After becoming a Mama, I’ve discovered the existence of a language I never knew I could speak but apparently has been lying dormant at the tip of my tongue all these years.
Mamas, I bet you know what I’m talking about – how we instinctively say “Cover your Mouth and say Excuse Me!” when our bubbas cough or sneeze, or “Elbows off the table!” when they are being sloppy. The hundreds of times a day we remind them to eat their veggies or not put their fingers into their mouths.
Unfortunately, nagging is the reluctant “weapon” of choice for most Mamas, including myself. There’s nothing like repetition to get things to stick in the fickle minds of our toddlers. We’re living proof – just look at all of us parroting the exact same phrases our Moms used on us.
My point is – practice makes perfect, whether it’s minding your Ps and Qs, having good table manners, or practicing good hygiene.
So instead of always helping Sophie-doll clean up her toys and her play areas, I’ve recently started making her take a more pro-active role in keeping her toys and kitchens clean. I figure that she should take responsibility for the messes she makes as soon as she understands – and at 2.5 she most definitely understands what I mean when I tell her to pack her toys.
We’ve recently moved on to doing some simple cleaning – like when she spills her drink on the table or drops food on the floor. I started looking for a cleaning solution and cloth/cleaning pad for her to clear up her messes. Here, she’s seen clearing up peanut butter and jelly smeared on the marble countertops of her play-kitchen:
Unfortunately, most of the cleaning liquids available online and in-stores had harsh chemicals or cleaning agents which I felt were not gentle enough for her toddler skin and hands (she scrubs like a fiend). I needed something that was
- Foamy – because she LOVES foam and has no problems cleaning anything or washing her hands as long as there’s tons of frothy, creamy foam
- Gentle on hands – she’s just a toddler and some of the chemical ingredients on the cleaning liquids I found really horrified me.
- Effective – I tried to make my own cleaning liquid. It was runny and smelled awful. Enough said.
- Smelled good – because that’s just more fun, right?
- Kills germs – I mean, what’s the point in getting your toddler to clean up and then doing another round of disinfecting (don’t call Child Services, please!)
- And then again Our Lifestyle Shop had a solution for us. I tell you, since I saw it on Joanne’s blog I had been eagerly awaiting the day the Foaming Lemon Scented Cleanser & Disinfectant would be offered to us to try. And it’s been our go-to disinfecting and cleaning foam ever since Su placed the bottle in my trembling hands. I can’t even start to talk about how OLS has fed every single hygiene obsessed and OCD bone in my body and kept me sane.
I would literally drive my husband crazy in the supermarket staring at labels and getting frustrated about the lack of eco-friendly and baby safe household products in my life. I have exploded in anger when he came home with a horrible bottle of CIF that is so toxic it can burn through the first layer of my skin. People who don’t have sensitive skin and a nose which is allergic to basically everything will never understand my life.
But I digress.
This Foaming Lemon Scented Cleaner & Disinfectant is my desperate housewife dream come true. I use it together with Be Sanitized and its cut my work down by 80% at least but achieved a much cleaner effect, with minimal carbon footprint to boot. Here’s Cinderella at work, already displaying the same OCD genes as her mother:
Basically, as I shared in this post, when I’m in a rush, I disinfect her toys using Be Sanitized and give it a quick wipe. But for bigger and grosser messes, the Foaming Lemon Scented Cleaner & Disinfectant is much better – you get the feeling that you are REALLY cleaning and disinfecting and the fresh lemon smell that’s left is divine (I am part of the generation conditioned and raised to believe something is only clean if it smells like a citrus fruit).
Yes, I am raising a Stepford Wife but hey, no one forced her to pick up the cleaning pad and start wiping. She absolutely did that automatically. I’m rearing a responsible child who knows that the first and possibly best gift you can give society and parents is to learn to clean up after yourself (this is completely tongue in cheek).
Here’s what else it’s great for:
- Wiping funky toilet seats. Yes, the can is large but I will gladly tote it around. Especially since I’m toilet training Sophie Rose, I need to make sure the seat is clean enough for her tender bottom.
- Vomit. I basically spray the foam on top of the vomit to mask the smell and because it actually makes it easier to wipe up. After that, another spray and wipe completely eradicates the foul smell and gives your floor a good disinfecting.
- Wiping toys which have physical dirt – the dirt comes right off and the foam, unlike gel or cream, really gets into the nooks and crannies and then because it’s so light, its super easy to wipe of – you don’t have to get cotton buds or little tools to make sure you’ve wiped everything off. The residue will just evaporate by itself and its absolutely safe for your bub even if you don’t manage to get every single bit of foam off.
But really, if you’re wondering how to even get your toddler started, here are some of my tips which worked great for us.
- Start ’em young – Teaching responsibility has been something I’ve enforced since she was a much smaller baby. It starts as simply as guiding her to put her toys back into her storage bins, and slowly moves into allowing her to do it herself.
- Praise: I can’t emphasize on this enough. Toddlers need that recognition and that warm glow of approval from their parents. It adds positivity and prevents cleaning or washing up from turning into a boring old chore. Showing them some appreciation for helping out and being part of a team sets the right tone and a great, positive association to the activity.
- Make it fun. I don’t just watch and let her do it on her own. We started off wiping up together, while singing a “clean up” song (Barney has a good one) or even getting a little competitive to see who can get the stain off first. Making it fun for Sophie means she’s glad to do it over and over again.
- Showing her that if she doesn’t do the cleaning up, someone else has to do it and that’s not nice at all. I’m a firm believer in consequences. When we go out, I show her how if she makes a mess someone else has to clear up or that she’s troubling another person, and that’s selfish and inconsiderate.
- And, of course, by buying the right equipment and tools to get her started in the first place!
Our Lifestyle Shop’s products have found a Permanent Home in our place and will continue to do so when I move into our new home and have to do all the cleaning by myself again (I’ve been growing fat at my in-laws’ just lying around and not needing to do any cleaning. Oh the joys of being a (semi) dependent!
What I really like about all the products I have endorsed are that they are so well chosen and made with a modern Mama in mind.
- They are intuitive – from being able to be sprayed upside down to having just enough air pressure to ensure an even (and efficient) distribution of product, the attention to detail and to being user-friendly makes me happy the way Japanese products do. You feel like the people who created the product really kept the end-user (myself) in mind and it just makes life so much easier.
- The eco-friendliness and also baby-safe quality of the product – Trust is everything. And their products have never let me down. Since starting to use KONK at home my daughter has never had another terrible bout with mozzie bites that she’s allergic to. I have peace of mind knowing that they are safe for her to use and that we are a socially responsible household.
- The people behind the company are sincere – they are engaging, understand our needs and curate the products carefully so by the time it reaches you that you basically don’t have to worry about anything.
There you have it. I never endorse products I don’t believe in 100% myself – and that I haven’t already tried in my own home. To be completely frank, I’ve been approached by several other brands offering similar products and monetary compensation to boot but I’ve not compromised because there were issues about their products which I would not feel comfortable to use in my own home and therefore would never recommend to my readers in turn.
The Foaming Lemon Scented Cleaner & Disinfectant is available now for $45.90 at Our Lifestyle Shop and you can quote “FANOFLBG” for a 5% discount!
🙂 I was given a can to try in return for an honest and unbiased review. No monetary compensation was received.
Tell me how it works for you!