Jumping Hurdles: Keeping clean

Last night, my housemate accidentally put dish soap in the dishwasher instead of actual dishwashing detergent. One hour of chaos, wet socks, laughter and foam ensued, along with a very spotless kitchen. A word of advice to all aspiring, trying-to-be-functional-adults: don’t ever put dish soap in your dishwasher. It will create more soap suds than you could ever want — even in your bubble bath — and these suds will proceed to spill out of the machine and flood the kitchen floor. You’ll then have to frantically Google “how to fix a dishwasher,” while your housemate attempts to pile towels under the soapy waterfall to stop the flooding (to no avail, of course). Turns out, to stop the flood, you have to completely empty the machine, scoop out all the soap bubbles and then dump salt and vinegar (not the chips, unfortunately) all over the bottom of the dishwasher. It’s a pain in the butt, that’s for sure.

But, in dark times — like those of an explosive dishwasher —  there is always a bright side. The soap all over the floors inspired me to deep clean my whole kitchen, since I pretty much had the floors mopped at that point. So I swept, scrubbed and vacuumed until the kitchen looked like it came right out of a catalogue. It took much longer than I expected because our kitchen was grimy — although it didn’t look like it on the surface level. It made me wonder if the kitchen had ever been deep cleaned in all the time people have lived there. Seriously.

How come nobody cleans their house in college? It really isn’t that hard — a little sweeping here, a little dusting there and just like that, a house can transform into a place of cleanliness and refuge. I’m learning that if I do just one chore every day, my house can stay comfortable and livable, and I won’t have to wear shoes all the time for fear of stepping in yesterday’s spill or the dirt someone tracked in. A clean home is a happy home; decluttering and keeping tidy is a surefire way to keep stress levels down and we Tufts students definitely need all the destressing we can get.

This goes for dorm rooms too — nothing stressed me out more than having my one space on campus be cluttered and dirty, especially since dorm rooms are already so tiny. Keeping my desk clear, rug vacuumed and bed made gave me sense of control and peace.

College is crazy and stressful and we are constantly bombarded by events and activities happening every second. It is important to have a place to escape to decompress and take some alone time. This is why a clean room or a clean house can be so helpful — it makes your space a place where you can truly unwind, without feeling overwhelmed or stressed out by the mess around you.

Keep it clean, folks. It’s easier than you think.