7 Cleaning Tips & Hacks. Strategies for Fast, Effective Cleaning

Cleaning your house can be a time-consuming process and it often can feel like a chore. You’re a busy person and have better things to do, so are you ready to save some time? Great. Let’s get to it.

1. Cut The Clutter

The word declutter on a wooden surface. Decluttering is essential to keeping your house tidy.

By reducing the number of items in your house it means you’ll always need to tidy less. The old saying goes “Organized clutter is still clutter. Get rid of it”.

Embrace Minimalism

  • Sell or recycle items that you don’t need.
  • Donate on a regular basis.
  • Don’t go shopping unless you need it.
  • Find a suitable place for everyday items to avoid regularly shuffling objects around the house.
  • Avoid keeping items only for the sentimental value.

2. Invest in High-Quality Tools and Products for Effective Sterilization

Spring cleaning tools that serve a range of purposes so that you can clean with less hassle and be effective with your time.

You’re only as good as the tools that you use. Equip yourself with the latest cleaning appliances to minimalise any unnecessary effort for a faster clean.

    • Cleaning Checklist: Quickly work your way from room to room. A checklist helps you to be organised. Soon you’ll be able to build a solid, repeatable process to tackle each, individual room.
    • Microfiber cloths /dusters: These cloths have smaller threads than the grease, dirt and bacteria you’re trying to removing whilst cleaning. Microfibres help you reach into surface pores and crevices that a standard mop or duster would struggle to penetrate. It’s deep cleaning with no extra effort, simply beautiful.
    • Broom / Dustpan: Our favourite is the OXO Good Grips, this broom features a handle allowing it to be snapped straight onto the dustbin.
    • Tote your tools: By Toting your tools you’ll be able to move around your house easily, equipped with all of your essential cleaning products.
    • Floss: Use floss for loosening grime around the handles and crevices on taps.
    • A Squeegee for Your Bathroom: If you have a bathroom, poor drainage or tiles within your shower, a squeegee is a great addition to your toolkit. Apply the squeegee after taking a bath or shower to cut your cleaning time in half.
    • Toothbrush: The almighty toothbrush can easily defeat: Tile Grout, Stovetops, Velcro, Hair Dryer Vents, Car Seat Cushions and Drains.
    • Lint Roller: An odd but useful addition to your arsenal, lint roller has a range of uses such as cleaning lamp shades, hairy clothes and cleaning up broken glass. Looking for more uses for your lint roller? Jillee’s article goes more into depth.
    • Vinegar / Lemon Juice: Two hardcore, natural cleaning products which are skin friendly.
    • Gloves: We recommend the Playtex Living Gloves which have reinforced fingertips and palms to help with slippery items such as dishes and cutlery. The gloves come with long cuffs, thus keeping your hands dry, allowing you to move swiftly onto other tasks.
    • Cleaning Solutions: Buying high-quality products will provide a deeper clean for your surfaces, making your clean last longer. Either Cleenol or Method (Natural Alternative) are great options.

 

3. Make it a Cleaning Daily Practice, Not a Project

A quote by Meagan Francis stating that cleaning and organising is a practice and is not a project. We believe that daily cleaning & have a regular practice can help you live a tidier life.A daily cleaning practice will keep your workload small and manageable, with less work to do in one sitting, you’ll possess a greater commitment to cleaning and finishing successfully.

Habits take approximately 21 days to become fully integrated into your routine. So be devoted to your cleaning schedule – ensure that you never miss a day. The continual repetition will rapidly instil the positive habits. 

Did we forget to mention “Eventually you’ll look back and your cleaning workload will be gone without you even noticing?”

Building Your Daily Cleaning Routine

  • Decide on the amount of daily cleaning time you’re willing to commit to.
  • List all of the chores, rooms and other cleaning activities.
    • Plan your daily routine, ensure that it fits around your work schedule and that it covers every aspect of your home. (Rooms, Daily Tasks vs Weekly Tasks).

4. Be Time Efficient – Multitask

A sand timer with the words time efficiency. We believe multi-tasking your activities can help to make you more time effective.

Time-effectiveness is crucial, therefore we recommend multi-tasking your cleaning activities. Firstly start with tasks that require a small time-investment that will self-execute after initially setting them up.

Below you’ll find several examples, that can be put on whilst tackling more ‘time-intensive’ sanitation activities. 

Low Input, self-executing tasks

  • Dishwasher: Load the dishwasher and start the wash cycle.
  • Tumbledryer: Put it on a dry cycle.
  • Washing Machine: Place dirty clothes in your washing machine and activate it.
  • Drying Rack: Remove clothes from your washing machine and hang on a drying rack.
  • Soak pots and pans: After finishing a meal, remember to soak pots and pans to reduce the amount of scrubbing you need to do in the future.

 

5. Utilise the Power of Teamwork

Are you running out of time despite having an awesome cleaning process? Why don’t you try recruiting extra hands to help you – grab all hands on deck!

A media gif that shows the power of teamwork.

  • Ask your partners, friends or a fellow family member to help with the sterilization activities.
  • Assign age-based chores to your children.

Tips & Tricks

  • Remember to keep it playful.
  • You can incentivise and positively encourage others for contributing towards the cleaning.
  • Make a daily responsibility/chore chart during the week for each child.

 

Potential Incentives

Children

  • Grant access to the TV, games and other media formats.
  • Give occasional day trips out to zoos, model villages and other attractions.
  • Share ice-cream, sweets or their favourite dinner.

Adults

  • A free dinner at the local restaurant.
  • Purchase the person an experience such as a 1-month gym membership or tickets to see their favourite artist.
  • Spend quality time with them and be appreciative of their cooperation.

 

6. Clean From The Top → Bottom, Left → Right

A women cleaning a staircase demonstrating a groovy, cleaning technique!

Don’t start by washing the coffee table, then the windows, and spotting that the dust from the windows has travelled onto your newly cleaned table.

In the same fashion move from left to right, have a systematic approach and you’ll avoid going over the same spots again.

  • Work from the top to the bottom of each room.
  • Start at the top of your house and work your way downwards.
  • Keep organised and only clean the same spot once, go from left to right!

 

7. Set A Time Limit Per Room

A calm, collected business man sat on top of an hourglass timer. This image shows how their is a time limited attached to various tasks / activities.

Setting reasonable time limits ensures that each room gets some well-deserved care and attention.

  • Knowing that your clock is ticking will keep you moving at a steady, consistent pace.
  • Use either your phone’s inbuilt timer / an IOS timer or Android timer.
  • Give each room an adequate amount of time according to its size and cleaning difficulty. (i.e. the lounge – 20 minutes, easy  vs the Kitchen – 35 minutes, medium).

We hope that the tips above help you to have a fast, efficient and enjoyable clean. Remember that if you ever need cleaning help in your house, at Belle Casa we are always available.

Mother’s Day Ideas and Spring Cleaning Tips

daffodils

Christmas – it almost seems an age ago now. The festivities are well and truly behind us and the Easter eggs are beginning to populate the shelves of every supermarket. Before the chocolatey madness that is Easter we are fast approaching Mother’s Day and the day where petrol stations flower sales go through the roof.

Joking aside Mother’s Day can be a stressful time for pretty much everyone in the family. We’ve got some tips for those potential Mother’s Day Mishaps that undoubtedly occur once every few years. Below are some quick smart tips that might just get you out of those stick situations with ease.

That Dreaded Wine Spillage?

It goes without saying that on Mother’s Day every Mum is entitled to a few glasses of vino and why not!? On occasions wine gets spilled and it can end up in a frantic operation to get it out of the sofa, carpet, grandchildren’s clothes – pretty much anywhere it shouldn’t be. Our first top tip is how to get Red Wine Stains out with ease.
Use A Vinegar Solution
Make your cleaning solution.

In a large bowl, mix 1 tablespoon (15 millilitres) of dish-washing liquid, 1 tablespoon of white vinegar, and 2 cups (236 millilitres) of warm water. Stir to combine the three ingredients.

  • Only use white vinegar for this method. Other vinegar’s (like apple cider or balsamic vinegar) can cause their own stains.

Wet the stain with the mixture.

Soak a clean rag in the vinegar mixture, then dab it on to the stained part of the carpet. The mixture will seep into the carpet fibres, loosening the stain.

  • Use a second dry rag to blot up the liquid as you go. Alternate between dabbing on the vinegar solution and drying it up.

Wet the whole stain with cold water.

Now, soak a third rag in cold water and press it into to stain to dilute the wine. Alternatively, pour a little water directly onto the stain. Soak up the water by dabbing with your “drying” towel once again.

  • Repeat as needed. For maximum effectiveness, you may need to run through the steps above several times.

red wine

Why Not Try Our Services?

We understand that it can be very hectic around Mother’s Day and if you’re a mother yourself the last thing you want to be doing is cleaning. Why not put your feet up and use our expert cleaning service or our speedy ironing service. You’ll be surprised as to how little it costs. Why not check out our Cleaning Pricing and the Areas We Cover.

The Hell-Fire Caves – A Spooky Adventure

The weather is on the turn and it’ll soon be time to start exploring the Chiltern Hills once more. Before you do that – why not head down to The Hell-Fire Caves in West Wycombe? A tour down the Caves takes you along deep winding passages which extend over a quarter of a mile underground and lead past various small chambers to the Banqueting Hall, and then further down over the River Styx. According to mythology this River separated the living world from the Underworld. You finally reach the Inner Temple are are now some three hundred feet beneath St Lawrence’s Church with its Golden Ball on the top of the hill.
Don’t forget to keep your eyes peeled for our resident ghosts, Sukie and Paul Whitehead.

Adults – £7.50
Children – £6 (under threes go free)
Concessions – £6 (inc Students & National Trust members)
Family tickets (Max 2 adults and 2 children) – £20
For Group bookings of 20 or more people, please contact 01494 533739

hell fire caves

Half Term Ideas & Cleaning Tips for Muddy Moments!

It’s already February and no sooner have we finished the cleaning from Christmas, but it’s half term and those muddy boots are back in the house!

We’ve got some great tips to make it all extremely easy for you to sort out – but, if you’re not using us, why not? Of course, if you love cleaning yourself that makes sense, but did you know that you could be you’re using our cleaning or ironing service for a lot less than you may think – and then you would be all set to do something fun with your weekends and holidays? 

Our tip this month is for those muddy moments! The first is shoes, and if they are suede don’t panic – just don’t apply any more moisture. Just brush the dirt and leave to dry. Repeat as often as needed.

If it’s a fabric and mud incident – like a sofa, then mix one tablespoon of liquid hand dishwashing detergent with two cups of warm water. Apply, and then using a clean cloth, sponge or rag, dab and take away the residue. Leave to dry.

Finally – those walls and skirting boards! The trick here is elbow grease – and you can easily tackle most walls with some normal dish soap – just be gentle.

So, now your cleaning is out of the way – what can you do this half term that’s going to really make the kids smile?  Our number one suggestion is Cliveden! This is the ideal place to get muddy, get wet or get crafty and with a range of fun outdoor activities,  whatever the weather, as well as walks, talks and games – this is the ideal place to visit! Based in Taplow, Maidenhead, ) Cliveden have a real range of events. Our picks include:

The Snowdrop Walk – Friday 20 Jan 2017 to Tuesday 28 Feb 2017

Did you know that in 2016 staff and fans of Cliveden planted 30,000 snowdrops? If you want to see them in bloom, come on by, anytime from 10am to 15:30pm.\

Cliveden Entertains: Daily Talks – Everyday!

The volunteers at Cliveden have a wealth of knowledge and are able to talk at length about the estates. Call on the morning and see what’s on and who’s speaking!

Clive’s Den – in the woods – anyday!

Just next to the play trail you will also find Clive’s Den, our extra special natural den for make-believe of all kinds. Clive’s Den is big enough for the whole family hide in plus there’s wooden musical chimes to play. Adults tend to think this is the ideal spot to pop your feet up!

Cliveden – Game of Clues Murder Mystery – Monday 20 Feb 2017 to Wednesday 19 Apr 2017

If you have ever played the game of murder mystery, you’ll know that it needs somewhere really spectacular to really make it a thrill! Where better than Cliveden? Up until the 19th of April, there will be a game on the grounds, where you can work in a team to solve the murder of Lord Mucke, found murdered on the estate. Seek out clues, solve puzzles and unravel the mystery! Children aged 8+ can play, and you don’t need to book, just call before you arrive.

The details for your sat nav are: Cliveden, Taplow, Maidenhead, Buckinghamshire SL6 0JAContact telephone: 01628 605069  and you can check out their site  here: www.nationaltrust.org.uk/events

If you’re still not getting any free weekends of half term time because of your cleaning schedule – leave it to us! Call and speak to us about your unique requirements, we’d love to help free up more time for you.

Take a break from cleaning with Bella casa

New Year cleaning tips–and a trip out to The Rye!

If you love cleaning yourself, or if your new years resolution is to try and enjoy it a bit more then this is the ideal time to have found our blog!

The truth is, that no one particularly likes that first session of cleaning after the Christmas period- especially if you had guests around- there is no doubt all your bedding and towels are in great need of a full clean, not to mention the bedrooms and if you are extremely naughty–all of the pans too.

We’ve done the maths and we estimate that using our handy tip, you can get those frying pans that you just don’t want to tackle sparkling in under 10 minutes. All you need to do is fill the pans with a layer of water and just a cap full of vinegar and bring the pan to the boil. You can use all four hobs if you left that many! After it has boiled remove the heat and put in a teaspoon of baking soda. You then simply leave this for five minutes then tackle the pan as normal – taking care of any nonstick coatings. If something is still stuck on, add a little more dry baking soda and try again. Easy! As we mentioned if you’re using a cleaning service you can skip all of this and leave it to us if that’s the case why not enjoy the New Year feeling with a nice day out. Our pick is to go to The Rye.

Based in centre high Wycombe tucked away close to the shopping area on the main high street this 22 hectic park resides. It is actually the second largest park in the area, and whilst you might associate the park with the summer months – if you don’t mind donning some willies winter coats and perhaps taking an umbrella or two, you can let the children enjoy the playground football pitches or head out to the stretch open water. Head down the way and you’ll see fisherman around the lake, people enjoying pleasure craft which can be hired at the West End of the lake- and you can spot things like waterfalls, flowing streams as well as the leisure facilities like the gym tennis courts. The real attraction here is the open air pool – and because it’s completely heated, there’s no need to grab your wetsuit!). The Rye is completely free to get into, although swimming costs around £4 per child and £6 per adult.

Whilst you are then you can also enjoy the soft play toddler world area the on-site creche and childcare facilities- great if you need a bit of a break!

We had a look at the opening hours and you can attend for Monday to Thursday from six till 10 Friday six till nine and Saturday and Sunday from eight till seven they even open on bank holidays from eight until six. The postcode is HP11 1QX -why not take a look and see what’s on it could be a great day out and it makes a change from cleaning. Here at Belle Casa we would like to wish all our customers a very happy 2017 and we hope this is the year that you enjoy even more special memories – and less time cleaning!

Mud cleaning tips you need, plus a trip to Ray Island!

It’s that time of year when we are faced with a cleaning challenge whether we use a cleaning service or not- and that challenge is MUD!

If you want to know how clean mud off fabrics, then we can help! So, you have a few options. We always say, invest in a pre-treatment. There are many of these magical liquids out there and they really can help to loosen the soil particles away from the fibres. This saves money on running an expensive spin cycle that doesn’t get perfect results the first time.  So, apply the pre-treatments and let it settle in. Then you can then wash at 40 degrees, and get the item on the line or in the dryer. If you are working with a satin, wool or another delicate fabric, then try a spoon or a toothbrush on the fabric face. Be gentle, and press rather than drag!  Meths can work to release the soil, or you can again get a specialist pre-treatment – check it suits the fabric you are working with. Apply and then rinse with a soft detergent. Be prepared to gently go at this garment a few more times – slow and steady wins the race!

If you love cleaning yourself, or indeed if you’re using our cleaning or ironing service, you’ll be all set to do something fun with your weekends that doesn’t involve going over a muddy sofa or muddy top – so we’ve come up with a great family day out. 

If you want somewhere FREE to visit that’s just a few miles away from Beaconsfield and can tire out any little ones – then you should definitely get those wellies on and head down to Ray Mill Island.

Image credit: Philbray.me

Image credit: Philbray.me

At 16,442 sqm or 1.6 hectares, this has all the space you need for a great day out.
Operating for the whole year, this park and playground is the ideal place to let kids between 3 – 8 years run wild! With animals like Guinea pigs and birds, dramatic bronze statues and the café full of tasty snacks, there’s a lot to keep everyone occupied and it’s easy to get to. 

guinea-pigs
Animal lovers will like the budgerigars, lovebirds and macaws as well as the normal fowl roaming the area! There are also squirrels too that might be on the lookout for a snack…(Don’t feed them unless you can afford to lose a finger..)
It’s also well worth taking respite from any adverse weather  (or just taking a paper down) to ‘Boulters bar’ for a comfy sofa seat, access to great food and a view across the Thames. You can watch the canal boats go by and then walk to the end and take a look at the waterfall on the lock, maybe stopping to enjoy an ice-cream from the kiosk en-route if it’s not too cold. 


Based at the site of an old family flour mill (the family name is Ray) this millstone has a location next to a huh running river. If it’s a bit flooded out, then you might want to call and check if it’s still okay to make the trip down.

boulter-s-lock-and-ray
When you park, go near the Boulters Lock and take the bridge through Ray Mead road. It’s signposted, but don’t forget some thick boots so no one gets soggy feet!We hope that you’ve been enjoying lots of family events. This time is so precious – so if you want to make the most of  the time together – speak to us about our cleaning services. It costs less than you think and makes so much difference!  
Click here to contact us.

Clean Laundry Hacks & Ideas For A Speedy/Jumping Good Day Out!

It’s back to school time and you’ve probably got a home that’s either pristine and ready for the new school season – or – it looks like a bombshell has hit it! If you love cleaning and tips from our experts, we have you covered. The tip this month is all about laundry. Chances are, this is a chore you would love to get rid of – it never ends! We do have a few tricks up our sleeves to make it better though! Firstly is the major hack that helps you get the feeling of a silky t-shirt on the cheap tops you already own! Expensive tops feel great, but any cheap top can be reinvigorated! Just soak it in 1 cup of salt for 4 cups of water for 2-3 days. Wash as normal and they will feel wonderful!

If you can’t wash jeans without ruining the look- then use white wine vinegar! This won’t leave a bad smell but will ensure your denim stays pristine. You can also add a dash to a spritz bottle to help release tight creases in your favourite shirt or dress. Who knew?

 

Of course, if you’re using our cleaning or ironing service, you’ll be all set to do something fun with your weekend so why not try a visit to The Motion Simulation Room?

motion

Just 7.5 miles from the centre of Beaconsfield is a hidden gem for anyone wanting a bit of an adrenaline rush. You might not imagine that there is the world’s first full motion, 200-degree wrap around screen simulators that mimic Forumla 1 cars lurking in Slough – but it’s true!

The Motion Simulator Room could be a great treat for your family or friends. However, under 16’s need to be accompanied by a guardian, and they can only be used if you are under 1.5 meters/ 4 foot 11. If this doesn’t fit the bill don’t worry, we have an alternative day out to read about in a bit!

Described as the ‘ultimate life-like racing experience’ the pods have adjustable spaces, pedals and 3 axis of motion. It’s not for anyone with any nervousness, but if you have teenagers or big kids with lots of energy to release, this could be ideal! You can select what to race and the costs vary depending on your packages.

You can spend ages enjoying fastest lap competitions, a series of races ending and podium ceremony from £50 for the premium package, or 15 minutes less driving from £45 with the standard race package.

Everyone who goes raves about the experience, so if you have spare time and a bit to spend, this could make some great memories.

Address: 935 Yeovil Road, Slough SL1 4NH, England
Wed – Fri 12:00 – 20:00
Sat 10:00 – 20:00

If your budget’s a bit tighter or your family are a little smaller, why not head to Jump In Trampoline Area?

slough

Also in Slough, any age can enjoy wall to wall bouncing! From individual trampolining, dodge ball games and a pit for lots of falling and leaping, this is great fun for everyone. There are individual areas for the under 5’s and older kids and adults so safety is maintained, and there’s also a great soft play area for children to enjoy the fun whilst adults enjoy some coffee.

Head down there – it’s open weekdays until 9pm/ 10pm – and see who’s still got energy after an hour of bouncing!

Address: 550 Dundee Road, Slough SL1 4JU, England
Sun 09:00 – 21:00
Mon – Thu 10:00 – 21:00
Fri 10:00 – 22:00
Sat 09:00 – 22:00

We hope that you’ve been enjoying lots of family events. This time is so precious – so if you want to make the most of the time together – speak to us about our cleaning services. It costs less than you think and makes so much difference!  Click here to contact us.

Thick Bedding Time? Clean Them Well + Enjoy A Day Out In Wycombe

It’s back to school time and you’ve probably got a home that’s either pristine and ready for the new school season – or – it looks like a bombshell has hit it! If you love cleaning and tips from our experts, we have you covered. The tip this month is all about preparing for the heavy Winter ahead!

It’s now officially Autumn and it’s a great time to make a change for the season! Take the time to put away your summer clothes and bring out the thicker duvets and bedding. Now it’s not yet too wet, it’s a great time to clean your duvets. Did you know they ideally need a wash every two to three months? In the case of feather and down, this might mean a trip to the dry cleaners. Take care to pre-treat any stains and make sure they are dried as soon as possible to avoid mildew. We recommend drying them in the dryer (industrial or home, depending on the size) and making sire they are hung out as soon as possible on a dry, windy day to get that fresh, autumnal air into them.Of course if you’re using our cleaning or ironing service, you’ll be all set to do something fun with your weekend so why not try a visit to Wycombe – starting with Wycombe Museum?

museum20gardens20with20children20playing20small

From the Tiny Talk times for toddlers, the craft activities and even adult art courses, you’re bound to come more than once.

Open Monday to Saturday from 10am – 5pm, and Sundays from 2pm- 5pm, this great museum has been re-done with a really great cafe that’s ideal for lunch and perfect if it’s a wet day.

It’s a great local museum that covers plenty of history from High Wycombe which was once famous for it’s chair industry and was the largest chair manufacturing town in England. From ‘Wycombe in 10 Objects’, the onsite art gallery, chair galleries telling the story of furniture making through to stories that depict the words of people from Wycombe from the Caribbean, African, and Pakistani communities.

long-live-the-queen-chair-arch

If you’ve never heard of chair arches, you’ll be learning something new! Take a look at the history of these celebratory structures that were put up to welcome royalty. Children will also be keen to see how school desks looked like in 1909 – a little more ‘rustic’ than they may be used to now!

The real stars of the museum are the volunteers – and children are encouraged to take part in outdoor activities, dressing up, drawing and make believe, with lots of chances for adults to watch on with a nice coffee!

Just before you head off, we’re sure you’ll be dragged to the gift shop. There’s a good selection of pocket money priced stationary, gifts and odds and ends ideal to keep the memories going. If you have enough time, we suggest you then head off to Odds Park Farm. Museums don’t always let children run off their energy, but they can here! We covered it in our last blog – so take a look!

Enjoy the lovely change of the season whilst you can- when the snow is out, cleaning becomes a lot harder with all those muddy boots!  If you want to make the most of the precious weekends without spending them cleaning, then get in touch! Click here to contact us.

House Back In Order? Beat Back to School Blues With Odds Farm Park

It’s back to school time and you’ve probably got a home that’s either pristine and ready for the new school season – or – it looks like a bombshell has hit it! If you love cleaning and tips from our experts, we have you covered. The tip this month is all about getting everything back in order.

For smudgy fingerprinted windows – wait for a dull day so your cleaner doesn’t dry out and smear too quickly. Use a cloth over a screwdriver or a pencil to get the grime from the sides and crevices of windows and door frames.

For another classic – the Summer Holiday Carpet woes and those deep-set stains, tackle with a cup of cold water with one-quarter of a teaspoon of dishwashing liquid. Blend onto the carpet and dab, dab, dab. Leave a plain tea towel on the stain in the day to soak up the excess.

Odds Farm Park is a great mix of animals, indoor play and outdoor play. The farm has a nice range of animals, from bunnies and goats to sheep, pigs and more. You can milk a cow, watch sheep racing, hand feed the sheep and even watch the pigs have their lunch!

sheep

Then – onto the amazing indoor and outdoor playbarns. These incredible adventure areas have everything you need to wear out children! The indoor area has 6 slides, swing ropes and tunnels, whilst the outdoor area includes go-karts, ride on trailers and a water play area – if the weather holds. More great news – you can take coffee and cakes bought from the cafe into the indoor play barn – so you can cool off whilst the kids wear themselves out!

Indoor-Play-3-650-x-380

Outdoor-Adventure-Slider-2

If you need a full meal – why not head to the tea room on site? The meals are well sized and produce comes from organic/ free range sources.

If you’re ready to go, you can enjoy a lie in – the farm opens at 10 am and closes at 5:30 pm (get in there before half 4 as this is the last entry.)

We hope you’ve got a great set of activities in the back end of the year planned – if you want to make the most of the precious weekends without spending them cleaning, then get in touch! Click here to contact us.  You can also visit the Odds Farm Park website here. 

Summer’s Here – So Have Some Fun At Chiltern Open Air Museum

What’s happening with the Great British Summer? First, we had the heatwave, and we all enjoyed hanging our washing up outside for that fresh scent. Now – it’s all turned a bit patchy. But never mind! If you love house cleaning and domestic chores our tips have you covered. The tip this month is if the sun does come back is to take the chance and clean out any stained Tupperware. The suns rays are surprisingly effective! After washing the containers in the sink with dish soap and warm water, place them on a clean tea towel in the sun. Let them enjoy a bit of basking for around eight hours before rinsing and drying.

If it’s a dull day – take a look around the home for any colouring ‘mishaps!’ You might not know that cleaning sprays can stain your walls. However using a white, normal (non-gel) toothpaste with baking soda can gently ‘exfoliate’ the area. Just apply with a clean toothbrush, scrub or buff in, and wipe away the residue with a clean, damp cloth.

Just 5 miles away from Beaconsfield is the Chiltern Open Air Museum, and if you have children that could do with some mental stimulation, especially during the Summer holidays, this might be a great choice for you.

The Museum has been spotted on film before – adults will be inspired by its feature in Downton Abbey, whilst younger minds might be more keen to hear that this is where they have filmed some of CBBC’s Horrible Histories!

Based on a 45-acre site the Chiltern Open Air Museum is a great day out for families and stands as a little ‘time capsule’. There are around 30 rescued historic buildings on display, including homes from the Iron Age the prefab look of the 1940s prefab, a Victorian earth cottage and even a blacksmith’s forge.
Whilst it’s historic, the museum was keen to add in toys and games, models and has even fitted a playground that’s a child-friendly paradise.
We’d recommend an agenda with an exploration of the woodland trail, encouraging children to take on some of the activities. They can then head to the adventure playground and explore the ‘playable’ versions of the houses that are on display which will certainly ensure when they get round to seeing the historic homes that they’re interested and engaged.

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Terrific Tuesday Activities!

The museum really comes into its own during the school holidays and the Museum holds Terrific Tuesdays – events based on family crafting, games and more.

  • 2nd August has a theme of Ruby Tuesday where children can make all things red! From jewelled Anglo Saxon style broaches as well as draw-string purses, 3d ladybirds and red paper flowers – this is set to be a great creative morning!
  • 9th August covers Sports & Games, and young visitors are able to play croquet, try welly wanging and also have a go on a vintage bike! A great way to step back a few centuries for a classic sports day!
  • 16th August is ‘Growing Things’. guests can make a scarecrow, try their hand at pond dipping and take part in an animal trail before doing some vegetable printing.
  • 23rd August will be a classic 1940s Make do and Mend activity, with lots of changes to try rag rug making, decoupaging and cleaning and making – just like grandma would! There’s even a chance to cook!

The weekends are jam-packed too – for example on the 6th August you can meet the riflemen of Wellington’s Army from the Napoleonic Wars – where else could you say that would happen?

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See the rifleman at Chiltern Open Air Museum

If hunger strikes, take a trip to the Tea Room for a tea, coffee, slice of cakes, soup or an ice cream all at great prices.

After that, why not take a trip to the working farm? You can see the chickens, goats, sheep, horses and cows that play a huge part in the upkeep of the farm.

During the Summer through to autumn, the museum is open from 10 am – 5 pm and with tickets for an adult at £10 and a child for £6.50 (under 4’s are free), this is the ideal choice for any family wanting to take an educational but fun trip in Beaconsfield!

We hope you’ve got a great Summer planned – if you want to make your house just perfect so you can enjoy the sun when it’s out, then get in touch! Click here to contact us.  You can also visit the Chiltern Open Air Museum website here.

Deep Clean Done? Visit Cliveden For A Great Day Out!

It’s past Spring – and for many, it’s time for a Summer deep home clean. The bags are unpacked, the children are back to school and it’s time to get everything back in order. If you’re using the cleaning services of Belle Casa, you can relax, but we know that some of you do love cleaning and tips from our experts!

We think this month’s cleaning tip will come in handy for anyone struggling for extra space. We’ve noticed that many customers find storing bedding a real pain – and it can make even the tidiest cupboards a real jungle. Our top tip is to fold your sheets, and then insert them into the matching pillowcases. You can even add in additional sheets, comforters and decorative cushion covers for a complete grab and go set. This makes the whole set incredibly easy to store. Don’t forget to iron your sheets before you pack them away- not only are they easier to fold, but they feel much nicer. If there are some wrinkles when you unpack them,  lightly mist them with water (you can add essential oils for a nice fragrance) and they’ll soon come out. A tight ‘hospital’ style fold on the covers will complete the look and ensure no wrinkles, perfect for a long night of perfect sleep!

Of course, if you’re using our cleaning or ironing service, you’ll be all set with the perfect bedding already! So, with your free time, go have some fun! We’ve explored some great areas around Beaconsfield, and next on our list is a real classic – Cliveden.

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Photos courtesy of Cliveden.

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With stunning views that reach over the River Thames, Cliveden is a wonderful place to visit and is a great day out when the sun shines, but even with a bit of drizzle, it’s well worth a look. The real draw here is the magnificent topiary and lawns. There are over 375 acres of garden to be precise, great for burning off some energy, and the Cliveden Blue walking trail is a wonderful route for children, coming in at around 1.5 miles in the woodland. Dogs are allowed, but check the website before you head off with Fido so you can plan the right route.

If the name sounds familiar, or you remember it from childhood, you will surely be thinking of Cliveden Maze, a beautiful area which is made up of over 1,000 trees! It’s just as wonderful and great for all the family.

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Speaking of trees now is the ideal time to visit. Right now, youngsters can go wild at Cliveden with the free climbing sessions being run by The Big Tree Climbing Company. From the 20th of May right through to the 26th of August, family members aged 6 and over can try their hand at climbing at Cliveden. Under the guidance of experts, they can tackle a zip wire to zoom down and have plenty of fun on a rope swing.

If you fancy something a little more sedate, why not take a punt out on the River Thames? Cliveden allows you to hire a rowing or motor boat, or sit back and take it all in on a 45-minute cruise. Tickets for river cruises can only be purchased at the Information Centre in the main visitor car park and prices start from £6 for a child to £11 for an adult – Mr Darcy not included!

After your activity, don’t forget the cafe! You can stop at the Orangery Cafe, which is open daily 10 am – 5.30pm and pick up some lunch which is served from 12 noon to 2.30pm. Sausage and mash, crumbles and tarts are all on the menu, or you could pop to the Dovecote Coffee Shop for afternoon tea and big thick wedges of traditional cake! If you aren’t too full – perhaps follow up with a trip to pick up some jams and chutneys in the National Trust Gift Shop, full of unusual and interesting gifts.

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There is on-site parking available and the charge is included in admission price, another great hassle free help! So, why not give it a whirl? A classic house and National treasure, we’re sure when you leave the cleaning to us, you’ll have a wonderful time at Cliveden!

Location:

Cliveden Road, Taplow
Maidenhead
Berkshire
SL6 0JA

Visit the Cliveden website here 

Interested in our cleaning service? Speak to us today!