Sunday, January 10, 2016

Cleaning Old Scratched-Up Linoleum Floors

When we downsized from a large, newer house into a much smaller, older rental home I knew I would have to make a few sacrifices. Losing kitchen storage space and dealing with older appliances were two big issues, but I decided they were worth the savings. As long as the house was clean, I could deal with the other issues.

I wasn't prepared for a dirty kitchen floor. Actually, after a few thorough moppings using several different products the floor was very clean. It just didn't look clean. What we thought was a dirty floor when we first looked at the house turned out to be old, scratched-up linoleum.

I wanted to cry. In fact, I did cry.

fourelevenrox blog cleaning linoleum
We seriously considered investing our own money into a new floor.

Until we tried something different.

The floors were not the only thing dirty looking when we moved in. The cabinets were in pretty rough shape also.
fourelevenrox blog cleaning cabinets
I went to Home Depot and bought this:
fourelevenrox blog
And after a good scrubbing followed by an application of Old English Oil, they looked like this:
fourelevenrox blog cleaning cabinets

Big Difference!

The Zep Degreaser is a spray on product. As I was cleaning the cabinet, some of it sprayed onto the floor. I didn't wipe it up immediately. After wiping the cabinet, I wiped the spray that had gotten onto the floor. I noticed it removed a lot of the stain from the floor!

So we went to work, floor cleaning. First, we sprayed the degreaser onto the floor, in small sections. We let it sit for a few minutes. Then, using a floor scrub brush, we scrubbed, wiped and cleaned with water. It removed most of the stain, not 100% but enough for it to look as clean as it was.

Fourelevenrox blog: Cleaning old linoleum floors

After cleaning it, we applied a clear floor shine product also from Home Depot.
It looked almost new!
Follow up: A year later, the dirty look does return, but never as bad as when we moved in. I generally mop with the Zep degreaser and water and it cleans the floor well. About every 6 months, I scrub it thoroughly and it looks like new again.

*Disclaimer - please test this product on any surface before you use it. The label on the product gives full information. It is not necessarily recommended for use on linoleum or wood although it did not harm our floor or cabinets.

(I am not getting paid to advertise this product.)

If you'd like to read about other great products and cleaning tips, check out my cleaning blog posts here: Cleaning

If you have found any great cleaning products, I would love to know about them.
Leave a comment and tell me about them, Thanks!

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Round Toothbrush Rugs: When to Increase

I created a quick video to illustrate when to increase on a round toothbrush rug for those who are still not quite sure.

Note, when you first start a round rug, you may need to increase often and there may be visible large holes or gaps that make it easy to see where an increase is needed. As you go, the holes may not appear quite so large, so don't use the actual hole or gap as a guide. A better guide is the distance between the knots. When the next loop begins to appear too far away, increase.

The easiest way to increase is to add an extra knot in one space, as shown in this video. I have another technique to add that extra knot which gives a neater appearance but can be tricky. I'll post that advanced technique if there is interest.

I hope this video helps. If you would like more information on increasing, or if your rug is curling up, this blog post may be helpful: 3 Reasons Toothbrush Rugs Curl Up

Happy Rugging!

Friday, November 6, 2015

Homeschool Co-op Class Idea for Middle and High School

Are you looking for a great class idea for middle and high school students in a homeschool setting or a co-op?

It has been 2 years since I stepped down from directing L.I.F.E. Co-op, but it still holds a very dear place in my heart. All of my children have graduated high school and have moved onto careers or college. Even after 2 years, I sometimes get offers or email updates from publishers or educational resources. I don't mind. I pass the info along to friends if I think they may be interested.

One email recently reminded me of one of the best classes I ever taught in a homeschool co-op. What izzit?

middle and high homeschool co-op class idea

izzit? is an educational resource which provides videos and materials related to current events and critical thinking skills. You can read more about it here, at their website:

The company provides one free video a year to teachers or homeschool parents. Along with the video, you can receive teaching resources which include questions for discussion. So much can be done with these videos!

In our co-op, because the class was limited to one hour, we watched the video and had lively discussions afterwards. Often, if there was time, I would create a quick activity to go along with the topic of the week. Because the current event topics are worldwide, mini unit studies could easily be incorporated into an izzit? class. Crafts, cuisine, games, culture. there are so many ideas!

One thing our co-op did in order to have enough videos for the 10 week semester was to ask 10 parents to sign up for izzit? and request a free video. izzit? does require that you follow up with feedback regarding the free video, but that was not a problem. We had LOTS of feed back! We were able to build a library of videos. teach current events and bring our students and ourselves into other cultures opening our eyes to see and think about issues we had never considered before the class.

I highly recommend these videos!

For more information (411) about L.I.F.E Co-op, class ideas, or how to start a homeschool co-op, click on the tab above, or use this link: homeschool co-op