When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they will not overflow you. Isaiah 43:2

Saturday, May 29, 2010

The Mount Vernon Method and Frozen Milk

I have finally settled into a solid cleaning routine, which you wouldn't know if you visited right this moment because my boys have just dumped out every block, truck and car in the middle of the living room floor--well, actually they are starting to spread to the outer periphery now--BUT ANYWAY...

For clean ups, especially when I don't know where to start, I employ the Mount Vernon Method. This is the method the housekeepers used at George Washington's abode, and you can read about it more here. (Messies Anonymous, what a funny name...)

This method basically means you start at the front door and work your way around the house periphery until it is clean. The next day, you pick up where you left off.

My use of the method means I start at one point (usually the corner of my kitchen by the pantry (I don't know why)) and work my way clockwise around the kitchen. Then I go to the living room, starting at the corner by the window, I work my way around the room clockwise until everything is picked up.

Once everything at eye height is de-cluttered and cleared, I turn my eyes downward and clean the floors in, you guessed, clockwise fashion. That way I am not bopping around from hairball to dust bunny to smeary syrup smudge to sticky Sprite spill (oh no, we don't have those anymore now that we abolished soda (yeah right!).

My method does not extend to the bedrooms because they (in theory) have their own day assigned to them, when they will be addressed in clockwise fashion as well. So, I use this method only for quick clean ups before guests are arriving or at the end of our day.

It saves my wandering mind from the overwhelmedness of thinking, "THE WHOLE ROOM IS A WRECK SO I GIVE UP!" and keeps me focused on the next little area in the clockwise sweep instead...AND I can see immediate progress because everything immediately behind me is clean and clear.


Shopping with all my little lovelies is fine once a month, but I don't like to make extra trips (except to Murray Family Farms for produce where the kids can play after we shop) so I started freezing milk.

My husband researched and told me it would only work for fat free because the fat would separate in the whole (er) milks. Not so in my experience. So far, I have frozen every variety of milk (except raw) and I find that the fattier it is, the better it freezes (and thaws.) You do have to shake it up a bit after it thaws, to mix the fat back in, but it still tastes yummy!

The fat free milk I thawed on Monday still has a huge ice chunk in the middle and tastes mostly like water (more than usual) because the little fat that was in there thawed quickly and poured (poored?) off and now the high water content ice chunk is leaving behind mostly watery bleck.

My experience is therefore that fattier milk freezes great! So we can stock up in the chest freezer and never leave the dreaded, "we're out of milk," message for poor daddy. Well, almost never. ;)


jen said...

Thanks for leaving a comment on my blog.
I'm a new follower, and I am so adding you to my blog roll, solely on your post today. I've been wanting to try freezing milk, but I haven't been brave enough.
So, today, I shall be brave.

brooke said...

Thanks for the tip on freezing milk--I'm going to try it!

Dani said...

My grandma told me about freezing milk. She used to live in Nebraska and in the winter time they'd leave their milk outside to freeze.
So I try to remember to take out a gallon of frozen milk and place it in the fridge and by the time our current gallon is empty, the frozen gallon has thawed completely.

Maybe I'll try your Mt Vernon cleanup method. My "i'm super overwhelmed with the mess and just need a new house" method clearly is not working for me!

Liz Ratliff said...

I love your tips! Thanks for sharing!!!