Wednesday 17 October 2018

Thanks a Million Mrs Hinch Home

Home was somewhere I always felt trapped by, so took every excuse I could to go to the park or on a day out with the kids. Pre-kids my escape was long hours at work. My Mum always said I wasn't a "Mrs House" type person and that home was merely a place to lay my weary head. Home was the place where I could never catch up... with the dishes, the laundry, the clutter, it was all too much. And to be honest was never really my thing. Which is odd as I can transform a room with flair when I do put my mind to it. An ability I just rarely tap in to.

It was very early September when I discovered Mrs Hinch Home via my friend Sometimes It's Sarah. Just as she was about to get married. I think Sophie Hinchcliffe was on just under 100k followers at the time. Little did I realise that hitting that follow button would be so very transformational.

What did I do with this new found knowledge?

Well, firstly I immediately bought Zoflora (Country Garden and Bouquet) and secondly, I mopped then mopped again using the Zoflora to disinfect all of the downstairs flooring, which thankfully is all wooden (laminate in the kitchen, dining room and den with a real wooden floor in the sitting room). Yes no carpet, downstairs at least, should mean it'll be easy to toilet train Lottie, which means I ought to have done so by now, but that's a story for another day. I might now be great at cleaning but I am not yet Super Mum.
Clean and clear disinfected wooden floor

Floors are something I always focus on first for several reasons. One, because it's where all the toys invariably are so I get a huge boost from picking them all up and secondly as I am an empath I feel "energy" and stagnant energy tends to be on the floor. So clearing it, via hoovering and mopping, gives me the energy boost I need to then continue with other tasks around the home and if I pop out, say on the school run, and come back to clear floors it lifts my mood hugely. Clearing and cleaning the floors literally LIFTS the vibration of both myself and my home. I can see the benefit for the kids when they walk into that brighter atmosphere too. Such a shame that in traditional cleaning it is advised to do the floor last, it doesn't actually work that way for me personally.

Perception Deception

I suffer from overwhelm, which is where when I look at a task I don't see what you see. If you, dear reader, are tidy, you'll probably eye up a pile or a mess and think "that'll only take 15, 30 or 45 minutes" and you'll dive in. Perhaps the only thing you will think is "that won't take long" if you even stop to think at all. I know my Mum doesn't. A dirty mug doesn't linger long on any of her counters. And beds don't stay unmade. I think the only place my Mum goes before making her bed is her en suite. Clearly I must be more like my Dad LOL. Not so with me - this ability to dive in. I will eye something up quite a few times, be it a cluttered work top, or dining table, or 4, 5 or 6 Ikea bags of clean laundry that needs to be folded and put away, or floors covered in toys and to me it will seem insurmountable so I will do everything else but that task I've decided to put off and then there becomes more than one of those and the overwhelm spirals.

So where does Mrs Hinch come in? Well quite simply, she makes cleaning FUN. In fact she doesn't even call it cleaning at all. It is HINCHING. Like vacuuming became "hoovering".  Hoover was originally just a brand, then it became a verb "to hoover" and ever so quickly we now have "to Hinch". And there is more to it than simply that. Whereas the famous You Tube speed cleaners that have gone before her will focus on a large area, like: this is how I speed clean the bedroom, or the kitchen or the whole house... Mrs Hinch for a long while mostly focused on her sink! So for those of us who can't face DOING IT ALL... it was a manageable task. In an area you face very frequently and an area that gives back rich rewards in terms of sheen and shine. There is NOTHING that beats the feeling of waking up to a clean, clear SHINY sink. Anyone who knows me knows that far far far too many of my Instagram stories were - in the past - me moaning about doing the washing up. I don't and have never, owned a dishwasher. So this isn't a band wagon I have jumped on to be trendy. This is literally medicine for me and much needed. Following Mrs Hinch is like my daily dose of dare I say therapy.

So just like NLP where they will cure your fear of spiders by telling you to imagine the spider in black and white and imagine it as being very small instead of very big, I now see cleaning tasks as something speedy, something fun! Where the outcome and the joy at the accomplishment is so much more than the journey to get there. And because Mrs Hinch names all of her cloths and tools all the drudgery seems to somehow be taken out of it. It helps that she overlays a lot of her Instagram stories, so this now sees me doing everything round the home with music blasting. I'm literally whistling while I work.

It Takes Two

A recent critic wrote an article that all this cleaning is very 1950s and she criticised the fact that it's all women doing the Hinching. Well I have a story of my own there. Where my husband would come home to a messy home, he'd have to pick up toys before he could do anything and the bits he could do would always go unnoticed. Ever since I've been a signed up member of the Hinch Army, he does so much more, because now, it's so much more obvious what needs to be done, because I've nearly always already done three quarters of it. So I'd say he's washed up more frequently in the last 2 months than he has in the past 4 years. So don't always judge so harshly Mrs Journalist. It may be us ladies who are on Instagram, but there's an army of Hinch men behind the scenes. As for the men allowing their women to haul, until I was a stay at home Mum I was always financially independent but anyway, the only items I have bought, since Hinching, have been
  1. Lots of Zoflora, the little one pound bottles
  2. 3 pots of the Pink Stuff at a pound each.
  3. Elbow Grease a pound!
  4. Cif Power and Shine
  5. Astonish Mould and Midlew (which is AMAZING on grout and sealant etc...) and is only a pound!
  6. Astonish Floor Cleaner Orchard Blossom (which smells as great as Zoflora and is only a pound)!
  7. Astonish Oxy Active Fabric Stain Remover. You guessed it, it's only a pound!
That's one of the many things I LOVE ABOUT MRS HINCH she's introduced me to so many affordable products that are more effective than the more expensive options/alternatives. I've used all sorts of costly things in the past to get my sink shiny, to get my grout clean, to get my floor clean. Elbow Grease is an AMAZING product, as is the Pink Stuff! I only hope these things don't all go up in price as a result of being Hinched.

So in response to the naysayers no, not all of us are out spending a fortune on Hinch Hauls. And 100% Hinching is great for one's mental health it certainly has been for mine!

I am yet to buy the Vileda Vera Spray Mop or the Vileda Trace Turbo Mop and Bucket Set (although when money allows the latter will be my preference as I never could understand everyone going mad for Vera and love that Mrs Hinch was introduced to what she soon fondly named "Trace").  Sadly, as I don't have a B&M or Savers, or Home Bargains near me, I haven't even got soda crystals or vinegar yet. But will do, as a way of keeping all my plug holes clear :-)

But on a brighter note I have already Hinched:
  1. My sink regularly obviously. After all, with Mrs H you put your sink to bed every night. But I am yet to claim an elusive Minkeh (if you know, you know)!!!
  2. My kitchen sink cupboard and it's as close to a Narnia as it can be...
  3. My cooker. The windows on my top oven and bottom oven are now crystal clean and no longer brown, which to be fair is how they always were pre-Lottie. It's actually really easy to stay on top of them once clear with a frequent gentle wipe. Extra exertion is only required for a build up and I've seen from the many before and after pics on Instagram and Facebook that I am not alone in that, far from it thank God!
  4. My sitting room, proper clockwise style "mate" frequently, like Mrs H herself does.
  5. My fridge - but I only actually got round to that today as it's been a busy fortnight what with The Pipas 2018Avon Valley and Briz Shiz.
  6. My bathroom grout.
  7. My two toilets!! ;-)
Clean and clear laminate floors perfect walk way to kitchen and back door

Let's Talk Floors and Toys. Toys and Floors.

Our biggest source of marital discontent when Aaron was young, was toys all over the floor and once I'd gone to bed with him I was reluctant to get back up and deal with them. Hubby wouldn't put them away how I liked so some days they wouldn't get put away at all. It took me years (not weeks or months) to find out that other parents made a game of putting toys away and involved the kids in this task pre-bedtime. It's something I regularly do with Lottie now, so as a Mum of two, I'm not nearly as daft and wet behind the ears as I clearly was with one. Oh dear and that's not the only mistake I made LOL. I can laugh now with the benefit of hindsight.

Our favourite part of our home is the den, which leads to the dining room and open plan kitchen and the two big features of this are the skylight windows and the laminate flooring. Alas it doesn't look so great when covered in toys. But here's the thing. I finally got myself what it felt like the whole of the parenting world already had and that was an Ikea Kallax. To make up for being so late to this toy storage phenomena I WENT BIG.

My Kallax is FIVE BY FIVE meaning 25 cubic squares of lush toy storage sanity. So the toys are quite literally vertical instead of horizontal and our laminate floors get to reign supreme. Clear, clean, polished and shiny. Giving a clear walking and visual path through to the kitchen or the back door.

Fast forward to this year 2018 and in my recent busy fortnight, the floor started to get clogged with toys once again, (old habits die hard) but at the weekend when I did a HUGE spruce up to get us back to our new normal it was amazing the effect it had on the kids. It's like the space, the clear wooden shiny laminate floor, said "use me". Like in Alice in Wonderland when there are signs on things saying "eat me", so Lottie played with things she had never shown an interest in before like Aaron's road jigsaw and so thrilled was he, he got out ALL OF HIS CARS and got off the Nintendo Switch, to show Lottie which sized cars better suited the road. They played on the floor for hours and I literally couldn't have been happier. If you follow me on Instagram you will have seen it all in my Instagram stories but they expire after 24 hours so long gone now. But here are a couple of pics I took at the time:
Clean and clear floors are a blank page for creative play

But literally if you want floors clear of toys, get yourself a Kallax, it has certainly exceeded my expectations and the bottom cubes with pull out drawers, I have been very strict about and they've been maintained for a whole year now. There is a theme to each box and they get emptied out like that and refilled and tidied away like that. 
  1. So on the far left is a box of Thomas trains and tracks
  2. Next along is a box full of 2 x Fisher Price Farms with animals and people
  3. Next is a box of Fisher Price Little People a road set with electronic cars etc...
  4. Next is a box of aliens and space ships, the whole Early Learning Centre Happy Land set.
  5. Last box on the right is a box of Lightning McQueen and other remote control cars.

I can't tell you how satisfying it is with the first 4 of the above 5 boxes to tip each one out and EVERYTHING you need to play in that theme is ALL in that box. No routing through ALL the toys looking for one bit you're missing.

My only regret that I didn't get a Kallax when Aaron was a tot instead of November only last year when his younger sibling Lottie was a tot. I was working when Aaron was 1 and 2 and could easily afford it but I was managing to do a full-time role in 3 days a week and always chasing my tail and flying by the seat of my pants, far too busy to ever slow down and see what needed doing at home.
I was shortlisted at the Pipas in the Family section

Thanks a Million Mrs Hinch

There is a reason I specifically said Thanks a Million as the header for this post. Firstly because in the coming days Mrs H will reach a million followers on Instagram (she's already on 979k) and secondly because before she was even in the press or on This Morning, I said "by October she will be on a million followers" and I am finding it quite spooky that I was so right considering she was only on 100k when I said that. Only thing I will admit to getting wrong... eeek.... is I said early October and it turns out it will be later in October, but in my defence I didn't know she was going to get a DVT and be laid up in hospital for approx a week and that took Sophie herself by surprise too. Delighted she's making a full recovery and Hinching again. But there is just something very pure and genuine about her energy and sense of fun, that literally takes all of the doom and gloom out of the overwhelming feelings associated with cleaning. I know people who take a cursory glance at her Instagram account don't really "get it" but there are hundreds and thousands, literally hundreds of thousands of us who DO!!!! I'll always be grateful for the boost she's given me and the whole house and family benefits.

As you'll see in the picture above, from the Pipas 2018 photo awards, Hinching has quite literally seen me getting the spring back in my step and that benefits my whole family. Happy Wife Happy Life. Happy Mum, happy home!
Mrs Hinch signature phrase all the best


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