Have you ever wondered why you feel the desire to clean and organize the home every April?  I'm sure the longer and warmer days along with the increased intake of vitamin D from the Spring sunshine have something to do with it but it is also tradition.  According to Wikipedia"some researchers trace the origin of spring cleaning to the Iranian Nowruz, the Persian new year, which falls on the first day of spring. Iranians continue the practice of khaneh tekani (Persian: خانه‌تکانی; literally "shaking the house") just before the Persian new year."

This season of Spring cleaning finds me living in a larger home than my last (1500 sq ft vs 460) which means a lot more cleaning!  At least I have more storage space to cram all the junk I don't need but can't part with into 😂.

Ever since beginning my entrepreneurship journey, I've learned that there are so many fascinating Canadian companies out there making all kinds of products that we don't even consider.  So instead of going to the grocery store and picking up a typical Lysol product I decided to do some research and I found exactly what I was looking for.

Canadian Made Cleaning Products

Lemonaide (📍Oakville, Ontario) from Maison Apothecare is my new favourite line of home cleaning products.  The products are produced in Oakville, Ontario harnessing the power of - you guessed it - lemons.  You can expect the same level of clean and shine but without the harsh chemicals of typical cleaners.  I purchased and tested the Lemon & Lavender All-Purpose Cleaner (and tbh the smell alone makes me want to keep cleaning) and the Fruit and Veggie Wash.  I'll be going back to purchase the Floor Cleaner and Toilet Bowl Cleaner as I continue my Spring Cleaning binge.

Tru Earth (📍New Westminster, British Columbia) is disrupting the laundry industry with their eco-friendly laundry strips that eliminate the plastic of those large soap bottles.  Ultra-concentrated, hypoallergenic, and easy to use, I am now a big fan of these power-packed little strips.  As a household of two humans and three unruly cats, I wanted to be sure that the dish cloths that dry the dishes we eat off of were washed with gentle, eco-friendly soap.

Kitchen Organization

Having a countertop Utensil Holder is key for me when it comes to the kitchen.  I've tried storing all my large cooking utensils in a drawer to keep the countertops free of clutter but it's just not practical when I'm maneuvering between boiling pots and pans.  So I picked out a beautiful handmade, ceramic utensil holder from Jane Snider Pottery (📍Ottawa, Ontario).  Who knew a utensil holder could garner so many compliments?!  To fill my utensil holder, I picked up this beautiful set of handcrafted kitchen utensils from PEI Wooden Spoon (📍Summerside, PEI).  The very cool thing about these spoons is that they were baked in a kiln just like the utensil holder!  The 'thermal-modification process' gives the wood its dark colour. 

Another key item in my kitchen is the stovetop Spoon Rest.  I'll admit, I'm a very messy cook.  You don't want to see my kitchen post-meal 🤦.  I swear, if I didn't have a spoon rest then my whole stovetop would be covered in sauce!  Having a ceramic spoon rest leads to easy clean-up because I can just pop it in the dishwasher with the rest of the mess.  I asked Jane if she could make me a custom pottery spoon rest to match my new fern utensil holder and it turned out beautifully.

How many of you have googled how to store garlic? 🙋 Some store it in the fridge, others in the pantry, some in a paper bag, some in a Garlic Keeper.  You should forget the fridge because it turns out that the best way to store garlic is actually at room temperature in a dry, dark place.  Never use plastic wrap as it is not breathable and will shorten the garlic's lifespan!  An open paper bag or mesh bag in your pantry will work but a Garlic Keeper is best.  It provides a dry, dark space for your garlic right on the countertop so you have garlic on hand when cooking instead of having to find it in your pantry.  I picked out this gorgeous garlic keeper from aSpire Pottery (📍Hamilton, Ontario) that is delicately designed with garlic scapes and could be considered fine art.  That's what I love most about pottery - it is functional art!

Something I still need to tackle?  How to clean the oven.  Certainly not something I am looking forward to and I've been putting it off for too long.  Do you clean your oven with store bought cleaner or the DIY baking soda and vinegar solution?  Either one will need time to sit in the oven to work its magic on the grime, grease and build-up.  Might as well browse our extensive collection for more functional pottery while we wait.

April 16, 2021 — Rhiane Heslop