Despite priding myself on my lifelong organizing skills and proclivity towards efficiency and reuse, I find it awkwardly stunning how often I still have aha moments. After a brief pat on the back, inevitably I chide myself with "why didn't I think of that years ago?" You might find some of these suggested Tips and Tricks rather elementary, yet unless someone has grown up with a Heloise clone (aka Hints From Heloise) or an aficionado of "Reader's Digest Extraordinary Uses for Ordinary Things" and "More Extraordinary Uses for Ordinary Things", many of us still have a lot to learn.
This is particularly true for new homeowners. For instance, renters typically do not have the privilege or desire for mounting appliances or shelving along with many household time and space savers we take for granted. New homeowners usually saddled with tight quarters in starter homes can find storage challenging. The joys of undermounting transformed my kitchen and laundry areas. Three homes later, I still undermount paper towel holders. Sadly after my last electric smooth edge can opener died, I was unable to locate another similar undermount. To save on precious counter real estate, that puppy is stored in a cabinet for its occasional usage. Without abundant contiguous counter space only frequently used items get the privilege of being on display.
Other aha moments in the past few years have included two-handed dusting. The job goes much quicker using both hands. Another bonus of this method is as you dust picture frames you can use one hand's duster to hold the frame while the other hand does the cleaning without leaving dreaded fingerprints.
Boiling water to clean encrusted pots and pans is definitely one that could have saved me loads of time over the years. If it is real heavy duty job, first soak the pan in the boiling water with Dr. Bonner's Soap (I use Peppermint), about 1/8 cup baking soda, 1/2 cup vinegar and a dash of sea salt. scrub occasionally with a dish brush to begin loosening the grime, then after about 10-15 minutes (before the water completely cools), use a non-scratch scouring sponge to finish cleaning. If it is a real bug-a-boo, you might need to boil up some more water and start again, but I rarely have had to go to those lengths.
I'd love to know if you have had any aha moments for tidying your home. And remember, you are never too old.