Who doesn’t love spring? The weather is starting to warm up, the days are beautiful and we can pack away our winter boots (hello sandals!). Spring is a time of renewal, a time to reinvigorate different areas of your life. It is the month traditionally associated with spring cleaning the home, but why not take a holistic approach and bring new life to your health, your body and your home?
Spring clean the home
If you are anything like us, you aren’t looking forward to the dreaded spring clean.
But with a few simple ideas, you can make this evil necessity a little easier.
Jody Allen (pictured) from the Stay at Home Mum website has a solid reputation among Australian mothers as the go-to woman for household tips and ideas. Here are some of her favourite spring cleaning tricks.
Get the family involved – Assign a room or certain chores to everyone and then promise a reward at the end of the weekend.
Set a weekend – Mark it on the calendar. Make a plan and stick to it.
Make a checklist of chores – If you know what you are up against, the job will go faster.
Get the cleaning equipment ready – Have everything you need the day before. Go to the shops and stock up and then use a basket to carry the supplies from room to room.
Don’t forget the walls – Wash the walls from the top down to avoid streaking.
Dust from the top and work down – This prevents the spread of dust.
De-clutter – Throw away things you don’t need and de-clutter drawers and closets that are jam-packed with winter gear.
Dust first, vacuum later, mop last – This is the easiest way to avoid cleaning what you just cleaned.
Note repairs – While you are cleaning, you may see small areas that need repairs around the house. Jot down what needs to be done and set up a time next weekend to do it.
Reward yourself – At the end of the day, treat yourself for a job well done.
For more visit stayathomemum.com.au.
Spring home styling tips
Popular television identity Shelley Craft stopped by the Sunshine Coast last weekend for the launch of the new Caloundra Carpet Court store. As a co-host of Channel Nine’s hit show The Block, she knows a thing or two about styling. Here are her top tips.
- Declutter & clean
Spring is the perfect excuse to declutter. I like to make two piles – one with things to donate to a local charity and one for the tip.
I love any excuse to bring the outside in, but spring is especially great for fresh flowers. I use them for a splash of colour, without the commitment of a paint job.
- Cushions & rugs
Cushions and rugs are such a great way to inject some gorgeous spring colour and texture into your home. I like to use them to test out different colours before I go all out on a feature wall, or expensive furniture. Incorporating a vibrant rug into the space can help create a base on which to layer the colours of the season.
- Reuse and recycle
I love trawling op shops for vintage one-off pieces that can be upcycled. Sometimes it takes a bit of imagination, but it’s amazing what a simple sand and once over with wood varnish can do for an old piece.
- Greenery is always a good idea
Greenery is a must for any interior, especially in spring, as it brings life into a space. Don’t overestimate your green thumb. Just because a plant is on trend, doesn’t mean it will work for your room. Make sure you consult local gardening experts to work out the best fit for your lighting and temperature conditions.
Get your body in tip-top shape. Sunshine Coast naturopath Jodi Chapman of Advanced Wellness shares some tips to boost your energy, health and happiness.
- Love your food – Increase your fresh raw vegetables with spring and summer salads. Chop your favourite veggies, adding a small piece of chopped fruit throughout for a sweet touch, balanced with roasted nuts and seeds such as almonds, pine nuts, walnuts, macadamias or sesame seeds for an extra boost of vitamin E, calcium, and essential healthy fats in your salad. Drizzle with olive oil, squeezed lemon, or preservative free balsamic vinegar for taste.
- Love your health – Increase protein and healthy fats, both from animal sources such as deep sea fish, red meat, poultry and eggs, and a variety of vegetable sources such as legumes, avocado, olive oil, coconut oil, nuts and seeds. Your body is made of good fats, omegas 3 and 6, plus proteins, which we require to repair and replace damaged cells and muscle tissue. Carbohydrates are fuel only, so limit to only what you need for each day, reducing simple sugars. Go for complex carbs instead when fuelling – sweet potato, brown rice, or delicious porridge for breakfast mixed with your favourite berries, chia seeds, flaxseeds and coconut.
- Love your life – Breathe some fresh air and get yourself outside to enjoy this beautiful weather at least once every day. Find a mountain to climb, a beach to swim, rainforest to hike, go for a bike ride, walk or jog and enjoy the sunrise, sunsets and the stunning rising moon.
- Love yourself – Take time for quiet thought, listen to music, meditate, read, allow your mind to access your creativity.
- Love others – Meet with loved ones, allow time for socialising and relaxation. Combat unexpected sadness that can slowly develop when isolation creeps in.
- Love your liver – Juice organic vegetables for an extra boost in nutrients and be sure to choose new and colourful veg for lots of vitamins and minerals.
- Love your individuality – Finding the right foods for you can make an big difference to how you detoxify, fluid retention, weight issues, energy, brain clarity and mood. Anything that causes fluid retention reduces every organ’s function, slowly leading to feeling flat, fatigued and unwell.
- Love your guts – Be conscious of bacterial balance and boost your immune system through healthy probiotics, and homemade antimicrobial food recipes that can reduce the unhealthy bacteria, improving your mood, reducing pain, increasing brain clarity, improving sleep, and reducing signs of digestive bloating, pain, constipation or irritable bowel.
- Spring clean your makeup kit. Check the expiration dates on products and replace the old with new.
- Brighten up your palette with pretty pastels. We love blush, peach, baby blue and silver.
- Clean that skin! Exfoliating will remove dead skill cells that can accumulate through winter.
- Let your skin breathe (this goes for both guys and girls). Find a moisturiser that is lighter on the skin for those warmer days. With winter disappearing and skin becoming less dry and brittle, you can put away that heavy-duty cream.
- Brighten your complexion with Vitamin C. This miracle vitamin fights radical damage, brightens and evens out skin tone. Try eating citrus, berries and kiwi, or find a great vitamin C skin serum.
Head chef Benjamin Limpus from The Grill at The Sebel Pelican Waters Golf Resort and Spa says these are the top five foods we will see coming out of kitchens this spring.
Green peas – Coming into season and beautiful when fresh. Green pea and wasabi hummus is great with an Asian-style beer such as Kirin or Saporo.
Baby beets – Think pickled beet and quinoa salad with fig balsamic and goat’s cheese. Just remember to wear gloves when peeling as they stain the fingers.
Citrus – Lemons, limes and oranges are coming into their best time of year, and least expensive months. Use for cocktails, marinating lamb, seafood and pork. Zest up olives with lemon and orange peel, rosemary and confit garlic for a snack with a chilled and crisp rosé.
Banana – Great in buttermilk pancakes with caramelised grapefruit, which is also best in spring. Top it with pistachio praline.
Lamb – Lamb is at its best in spring because the traditional breeding cycle means the best eating lambs are born in winter. Chermoula-basted lamb cutlets with cumin-scented pumpkin puree and fresh spring asparagus are sure to be a hit at your next dinner party. Lamb is also great with fennel and spiced rhubarb jam.