I had to stop when I saw this headline on iVillage: 10 things you can quit cleaning right now. After all, I love having a clean house, but I wouldn't mind being able to cut a few things out of my routine.
The list offers some great ideas, but I have mixed feelings about it. Many of the solutions are devoted to disposing of items — like shower-curtain liners — instead of cleaning them. I used to be a big fan of tossing versus washing, and I'm still very tempted by the idea. But then I feel guilty about creating more waste. Take a look at the list and tell me what you think when you
- Sneakers. Just buy dark-colored ones and wear them until they fall apart.
- Grill grate. When you're done grilling, leave the grill going. Close the cover over the grate and let any residue cook off for 15 minutes. Throw that wire brush away.
- Soccer balls. Everybody expects them to be marred and mud splotched. Think of it as a badge of honor.
- Shower curtain liner. They're cheap. Throw your mildewed liner out and buy a new one every six months.
- Pillow. A washed pillow takes hours to dry. Throw it out and buy a new one every six to eight months.
- Stove drip pans. Use your grungy ones for everyday cooking, and keep a shiny new set to use when guests come.
- Ventilation ducts. Despite the advertising, regular professional duct cleaning is unnecessary.
- Fireplace walls. Everybody expects a fireplace to have blackened walls. And you'll breathe even easier if you give up fires altogether.
- Waxing the car. The newer finishes are so tough that cars don't need it anymore.
- Making the bed. Give it up — doctor's orders.