One of the things about moving into a house that has previously been moved in to is the cleaning that needs to be done before the house really starts to feel like "your" home. It can be things like wiping the shelves in the cupboards off before putting your dishes in them (heaven only knows what was on that shelf before) or cleaning the toilets before you let your daughter who has had to go potty for 20 minutes while we were waiting to sign all the paperwork go potty on it. There are obvious things that I have to have done before we even start pulling things out of boxes and start putting things away. And then there are things that can wait just a little longer before they need to be done. In my case this would be the floors. I of course have to keep them swept up so I am not walking on dirt (I tend to walk around without any shoes on in the house and I can not stand walking on dirt) but other than that I don't mop until I know all the boxes are in and all of the in and out involved with moving is over and I can then mop knowing that I won't be fighting against all of that.
This house was no different. I have been keeping the kitchen floor swept and loose dirt free for some time now. I noticed when I first swept that the broom kind of drug on the floor and didn't move quite as smoothly as it needs to to really pick up the dirt on the floor. After about the second or third time I just nixed the whole broom idea and started vacuuming it with the rest of the house. Luckily we have a great vacuum and it does hard floors just as well as carpets and since I was vacuuming every night anyway I just continued around the circle and vacuumed on into the kitchen as well. This of course meant that I could not do my middle of the afternoon sweeping in front of the sink/stove area (since after all, let's face it, that is where I do most of the work in that room) or I would have to get the vacuum out twice in a day and some things just are not worth it, and since the movers somehow managed to not move my kitchen rug that I so loved and really really want back, I have suffered through for the past few weeks (has it really been a little over a month since I moved into this house?).
Then last week I decided it was time! Every time I walk into this house that dang kitchen floor just irritates me, and then to top it off I walked into one of my neighbor's house who happens to have the same kitchen floor as me (military housing you know) and her floor fairly sparkled as I stood in her doorway and looked across it. I came to the realization something had to be done.
Now, if any of you have ever moved in to a house where the previous tenant had used mop and glow on the floor and nothing you do seems to make the floor look clean you will know what I am talking about here. Whoever lived here before me apparently wanted shiny floors, unfortunately they went about it the wrong way. For future reference do NOT use mop and glow on a floor to make it shiny, all it does it attract all the dirt in the house and then it pulls it in and won't let it go, much like glue that is still kind of tacky.
I set out to scrubbing the floors like I normally do (with some ammonia water and a scrub brush and a rag and my hands and knees), about half way across the floor I noticed the floor looked just as dirty as where I had not cleaned yet. I decided a bolder approach was needed. This is where I poured straight ammonia on the floor and then wiped it up... still nothing. Then I went over to the neighbor who had the sparkling floor and asked what she used, she was nice enough to had over the bottle so I could try that... nothing, didn't do a thing. At this point my knees and my back and my arms ached so I opted to get a cup of coffee and sit down at the computer to do a little research.
As it happens, getting mop and glow off of the floor is a pretty common problem, and there are people out there who are willing to give you the information and yes it is guaranteed to work just pay ... ya right, I am not about the pay someone good money for a book that I will have to wait for in the mail and then will have to read to only find out they tell you to use ammonia, ha! I had already tried that technique. Ok, so I didn't order the book I am just guessing as to what they had to say. Instead I put this computer to work and found a blog where she had actually used mop and glow herself (poor fool) and now she needed to strip it off of her hard wood floors. Her advice? Use a mixture of ammonia and water, I kid you not!
So here is what I actually did, after a bit more research I found a blog that actually recommended something else, and this something else you ask? Windex!!! That's right ladies and gentlemen, Windex!!! She mixed her's with water to dilute it but I don't have hard wood floors, I have linoleum and so I went for the gusto! I bought to bottles of the original formula Windex and went to work. I sprayed about half of my kitchen floor and put a nice thick coat on it. Then I walked to the bus stop to get the kids. When I got back I used one of the scrub brushes you clean a shop floor with (at this point my arms were pretty tired and I just didn't want to get down on my hands and knees anymore) and scrubbed that floor. Lo-and-behold!!! My floor was clean and shiny again!
I even have proof!
One more picture for the road?! Happy to oblige!