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Would your cleaner tell you???


A couple finds an old lottery ticket while cleaning for Thanksgiving. It’s worth $1.8 million.

(CNN)If you’ve been putting off tidying up the house, let this serve as an incentive.

“We have family coming into town for Thanksgiving, so I was cleaning up the house and found a few Lottery tickets on my nightstand that we hadn’t checked,” Tina Ehrenberg said in a statement released by the Louisiana Lottery.
It’s a good thing the couple found the ticket when they did. The drawing was June 6. Theirs was the only winning ticket.
Had they waited two more weeks, they’d have gotten zip; the window to claim the prize — 180 days — would have closed.
The pair said they couldn’t believe their good fortune.
“I called the winning numbers hotline over and over,” Tina Ehrenberg said.
Added Harold Ehrenberg: “We kept checking the numbers again and again!”
After taxes, the couple took home $1.2 million, which they plan to put toward retirement.
“We don’t have any plans to buy anything crazy or go on any big trips,” Tina Ehrenberg said.
“The most fun,” her husband added, “is going to be depositing that check.”

Halloween cleaning checklist: removing pumpkin and make-up stains


Halloween can be a messy time of year! This article discusses simple methods for removing chocolate & makeup stains, along with other typcial Halloween stains.

If you celebrate Halloween at home, then you probably know all about the classic Halloween stains that cover your clothes – and your kids’ clothes – at this time of year. From Halloween activities at home to trick or treating, and from dressing up to attending spooky parties, there’s no Halloween event that’s safe from those ghastly stains. If you aren’t sure of the best ways to tackle these devilish stains, then here’s everything you need to know about Halloween cleaning:

Pumpkin Stains

Nothing quite says Halloween like carving a pumpkin, and this is one of the best activities to do with the kids at this wonderful time of year. While it’s not wise to let children loose with the carving tools, one thing they can do is help ‘gut’ the pumpkin, removing the seeds and stringy flesh. If it sounds messy, that’s because it is, and it’s very rare that clothing survives this fun activity without some sort of pumpkin-coloured stain.

  • The first step is to use a spoon to remove any excess pumpkin from the clothing.
  • Apply a pre-treatment stain remover, and leave for one hour to allow the particles to loosen.
  • Or, you can apply a small amount of liquid laundry detergent.
  • Wash as normal in the washing machine, with a detergent and fabric softener if you wish. If any stain remains, then repeat as necessary.

Chocolate Stains on Clothes

If your kids have been trick or treating in the neighbourhood, they may have come back with a bag full of chocolate bars, chocolate-covered sweets, chocolate biscuits, and anything else chocolate-y! The result? One very happy child on a sugar high, and one set of very mucky clothes. Chocolate stains can be helped by pre-treating them before putting them in the washing machine:

  • The classic way is to massage a small amount of biological liquid detergent into the chocolate stain. Some manufacturers now offer dosing devices that double as a pre-treatment helper, ensuring the detergent reaches deep down into the fibres.

Makeup Stains

Sometimes, all you need to perfect a costume is a little bit of regular makeup, but what happens if you accidentally wipe your sleeve across your wet mascara, or find remnants of foundation on your collar? There are many tricks for removing makeup from clothing – here are a few of the best:

  • Apply a colourless shaving foam to eyeshadow stains. Shaving foam is really just a well-lathering soap at its core, and works to effortlessly clean any dirty marks. Again, always test any product in a small area first, and read the directions on the care label.
  • Use a stain remover or liquid laundry detergent for oil-based makeup like foundations, lipsticks, cream eyeshadows, and anything that claims to be ‘long lasting’. Following the instructions on the label, just apply a small amount of stain remover or detergent directly to the stain, before washing as normal.
  • For lipstick stains, apply a small amount of hairspray onto the area and leave to dry – this should take around 10 minutes. Then tackle the stain with a stiff-bristled brush for instant results. Again, always test any method in a small, inconspicuous area of your garment first – and always read the care label for advice.

Face Paint Stains

Zombies, ghosts, the devil… whatever we’re dressed at on Halloween, chances are we’ve used some face paint to help give us a really authentic and scary look. While face paint can really complete a costume, it does come with two problems – getting it off your skin, and getting it off your clothing. If the face paint is water-based, then removal from the face, and from the clothes, is relatively straightforward:

  • For the face, good old soap and water should do the trick nicely. You could also use makeup remover or face wipes – just follow the directions on the label.
  • For clothes, simply washing in the machine with your favourite laundry detergent can be enough to flush the colours from the fabric. Again, pre-treating the stains can make a big difference.

Oil-based paints are a little bit trickier, as they don’t react to water in quite the same way. To remove from your face, try using a makeup remover designed for waterproof or long-wearing makeup. For clothing, pre-treat before washing as normal.

Food Colouring Stains

If you’ve got kids (or if you just really like getting into the spirit of Halloween), you may have planned a spooky dinner menu, such as blood-red mashed potatoes, or a chilling blue lemonade as an evening treat. Food colouring comes in very handy at this time of year, and can be used to transform even the most plain food and drink into something truly ghastly. The problem? Food colourings are notorious for creating stubborn stains, and can be very tricky to remove if you don’t know how. The trick is to tackle the stain as soon as possible, so if you’ve made a spill just as you’re mashing those potatoes, stop and focus on the stain. Potatoes can wait.

  • For washable fabrics, soak them overnight in a bowl of just warm water and liquid detergent, before washing the following morning. Make sure to check the care labels first.
  • For items that can’t be machine washed, like carpets, alternate between dabbing with a good quality stain remover and flushing with water until the stain has gone. Be sure to follow the directions on the label and to test any product in a small area first.

Household disinfectants could be making kids overweight, study says


(CNN)Multi-surface cleaners and other commonly used household disinfectants could be making children overweight by altering the bacteria found in their guts, a new study published Monday in the Canadian Medical Association Journal suggests.

Infants living in households where antimicrobial disinfectants are used at least weekly were twice as likely to have higher levels of the bacteria Lachnospiraceae at ages 3 to 4 months than children whose homes did not frequently use disinfectants, the Canadian researchers found. When those children with higher levels of Lachnospiraceae were 3 years old, their body mass index (BMI) was higher than children who do not live in homes that frequently use disinfectants, the study also showed.
The bacteria Lachnospiraceae are “a normal component of our gut microbiota,” Anita Kozyrskyj, senior author of the study and a University of Alberta pediatrics professor, said in a CMAJ podcast.
However, she explained that it is known “from animal studies that higher levels of Lachnospiraceae have been associated with higher body fat and insulin resistance.”

‘Culprit’ linking disinfectant use and weight

The new report uses data from the Canadian Healthy Infant Longitudinal Development study, which began in 2009 with researchers actively following participants as they grow and develop, from mid-pregnancy into childhood and adolescence.
When infants were 3 or 4 months old, their parents provided a poop sample for each infant and answered questions about their home, explained Kozyrskyj. Samples from 757 infants were profiled and analyzed along with BMI data at older ages and parental use of disinfectant products.
One of the study’s findings is that roughly 80% of Canadian households use disinfectant products, most often multi-surface cleaners, at least once weekly, said Kozyrskyj.
While the researchers found an increase in Lachnospiraceae bacteria with more frequent cleaning with disinfectants, they did not see the same association with washing detergents without the bacteria-killing ingredients found in disinfectants or eco-friendly cleaners.
“These results suggest that gut microbiota were the culprit in the association between disinfectant use and the overweight,” said Kozyrskyj.
Gut microbiota refers to the community of bacteria that live harmoniously together in our digestive tract, explained Kozyrskyj. This community develops during infancy when we gain a larger number of bacterial species, with each species decreasing or increasing in number over time.
“We each possess a unique gut microbiota but there are common patterns, there are common microbes that are expected to be found in childhood and in adulthood,” said Kozyrskyj. “I would say around 3 years of age we have a bacterial composition that we can call our own. And it stays with us for the remainder of our life.”
This is important because past research has drawn a connection between gut microbiota composition and weight in adulthood.

Spotting risk factors for obesity

Though the study results highlight the connection between disinfectants and the gut microbiota, Kozyrskyj noted that “it still is a big leap to use the word causation.”
That said, some of the evidence clearly points to a direct cause-effect relationship between disinfectants and higher levels of the common gut bacteria, she said. For example, animal studies have found similar changes in the gut bacteria of piglets when exposed to disinfectants, she said.
And “higher frequency of use of disinfectant was associated with higher abundance of Lachnospiraceae,” said Kozyrskyj. Still, she warned that more research is needed to confirm these results and establish a causal relationship.
Richard Sedlak, executive vice president at the American Cleaning Institute, said in a statement that the institute was “disappointed at the sensational claims” made by the study authors. The study’s flaws include no accounting for the diets of the children, said Sedlak, who was not involved in the new study.
“Proper use of household cleaners and disinfectants is an important contributor to infection control and healthy homes,” he said. “These products are trusted by families to effectively clean, sanitize and disinfect areas of their homes, reducing opportunities for children at these young ages to suffer significant illnesses.”
“Proper use of EPA-registered disinfectants plays an important role in helping prevent the spread of flu,” added Sedlak, who quoted the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website, which advises people to “clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs like flu.”
In a published commentary, Moira K. Differding and Noel T. Mueller, both of the Department of Epidemiology at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, wrote that the study results were “biologically plausible.”
Why? The bacteria that we are exposed to during our infancy both educates our immune system and programs our metabolic system, explained Differding and Mueller, neither of whom participated in the new study. And in previously published studies researchers have found that disruptions in the natural development of the infant gut bacteria — due to a cesarean delivery, prenatal and postnatal antibiotics, or formula feeding — have been associated with a higher risk of childhood obesity, they said.

Sign up here to get The Results Are In with Dr. Sanjay Gupta every Tuesday from the CNN Health team.

“The prevalence of childhood obesity continues to rise globally,” wrote Differding and Mueller, adding that it is “more important than ever” to identify obesity risk factors and ways to prevent high weight gains in children.
Kozyrskyj said one finding in the new study surprised the research team. Babies living in households that used eco-friendly cleaners had different microbiota — much lower levels of Enterobacteriaceae — and were less likely to be overweight as toddlers. Yet, an analysis of the data did not show that this altered bacterial community was linked to the reduced obesity risk in the children.
“The eco-friendly product-using mothers may be more healthy,” she said, adding that the mother’s overall healthier lifestyle and eating habits may benefit both the gut bacteria and the weight of their children.
Because the results have yet to be confirmed, Kozyrskyj is not yet ready to recommend consumers buy eco-friendly products. However, she said the study did open her mind to using green products, including DIY vinegar cleaning solutions, in her own home.

McDonald’s accidentally served pregnant woman cleaning fluid instead of latte, manager says


News article from Fox News in the US.

Something we would definitely not advocate!

5 Of The Germiest Places In Hotel Rooms


When you book a hotel room, you know you’re signing up to stay in a space where hundreds and maybe even thousands of people have stayed before you. It’s not news that previous guests leave germs behind, but you might be surprised to learn where those germs are lurking.

With 14 to 16 rooms to clean in an eight-hour shift, hotel staff don’t usually get much time to clean a room, its linens and appliances from top to bottom roughly 30 minutes on average, or less during a busy season.(That’s why it’s important to tip the hotel’s cleaning crew if you’re satisfied with your room’s cleanliness.)

It’s also important to note that unless you have an immune deficiency, the germs you’ll find in your hotel room most likely aren’t dangerous. After all, you’re surrounded by bacteria and viruses everywhere you go, and your chances of getting sick from germs left by other hotel guests are low. Still, it’s important to take precautions and wash your hands regularly.

Here are five items in your room to keep your eye on:

The TV Remote

Admit it: Having access to premium TV channels in your hotel room can be pretty exciting. Or maybe you just like listening to the news or weather while you get ready in the morning. Whatever your preference, the TV remote is likely gross. Hundreds of hands have touched the device, and it’s probably not high on the housekeeping team’s long list of things to clean.

Jim Inglis, Valencia College’s program director for hospitality, told Click Orlando in 2015 that the remote control is usually “hands down No. 1” on the list of dirtiest spots in your hotel room.

That’s consistent with the findings of a team of researchers from the University of Houston, Purdue University and the University of South Carolina. After testing a variety of surfaces in hotel rooms in Texas, Indiana and South Carolina, the researchers reported in 2012 that along with the toilet and bathroom sink, the TV remote contained “high levels of bacterial contamination.”

The Bed Comforter or Duvet

Staff typically changes sheets between guests, but the turnaround for checking in new guests can be so fast that washing large comforters isn’t as easy. As we sleep, we release body oils and shed skin flakes, which can get on the bedspread along with bacteria we might be carrying.

Reneta McCarthy, a lecturer at Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration, summed up the dilemma in 2011, telling CNN: “If you went through and you had a good system in place and you were trying to deep clean each of your rooms four times a year, is it possible that a bedspread might only be changed four times a year? Yeah, it is.”

Kelly Reynolds, an associate professor of environmental health at the University of Arizona, told Time magazine for a February article that if you want to stay away from germs on the bed, getting rid of the comforter is a good start.

“Your best bet is to avoid contact,” she said. “A lot of people will recommend just folding the bedspread back or throwing it on the chair and don’t use it while you’re there.”

Reynolds also said the carpet can be filled with germs, so maybe bring some slippers.

SammyVision via Getty Images
If your hotel room offers glasses instead of plastic cups, it’s not a bad idea to clean them once more. They may not have been properly disinfected. 

Drinking Glasses

Many hotels now include plastic cups for their guests. If your room includes glasses though, you might want to wipe them down before drinking from them especially if those glasses are kept in the bathroom.

A 2018 study confirmed that flushing the toilet can contaminate many other surfaces nearby. Reynolds told Time that if glasses (and similar items like coffee makers) aren’t properly sanitized with a disinfectant not just wiped down with a dry cloth  they can be havens for germs.

What’s more, a 2008 investigation of hotel cleaning habits by Arizona’s ABC15 found that 11 of the 15 hotels it tested across the country did not remove dirty glasses from the rooms for additional cleaning.

Ice buckets might require a decent cleaning too. In 2007, Condé Nast Traveler found E. coli on ice buckets it tested from hotel rooms.

Lamp or Light Switch

The same research team that discovered bacteria on TV remotes also found heavy bacterial contamination on the bedside lamp switch in many hotel rooms. Similarly, as HuffPost explained in March, light switches, especially in the bathroom, are prone to collecting bacteria because of the many hands that touch them. 

Housekeeping Materials

Before you say, “These weren’t in my room for very long,” hear us out.

The University of Houston-led research team found that in addition to the remotes and lamp switches and toilets, the housekeeping carts themselves harbor lots of bacteria. Duh, right?

But it actually affects you more than you think. 

Because housekeeping teams have to clean many rooms in a day, there is the risk of cross-contamination. Dirty mops, sponges and towels can help germs travel from one room to another, so you might want to keep disinfecting wipes handy in case you think a surface might need some extra cleaning.




Being a Brisbane Cleaner is tough. Cleaning In Dubai is next level.

When the cleaner get a helping hand

Easy Cleaning Life hacks


People Are Sharing Shitty Life Tips, And Theyre Just Too Funny


Are you looking for terrible and completely useless life tips? Then you’ve come to the right place! Bored Panda has compiled a list of the crappiest advice ever.

Some of them come from a sub-Reddit called /r/ShittyLifeProTips, and while they won’t actually help you to achieve much, they are at least useful when it comes to making us laugh. From using ketchup as a bookmark, to saving yourself precious time by adding toothpaste to meals, these “pro” life tips are sure to put a smile on your face while completely failing to help you in any practical way. Don’t forget to vote for your favorite!

P.S.: These tips are a joke and may be dangerous, don’t try them yourself!



Yes, there is one great contribution men can make to feminism: pick up a mop | Helen Lewis


Our society and capitalism at large depends on the unpaid labour of women. But theres evidence that our gendered assumptions are hurting men too

Last week, I got a cleaner in. Now I know what youre thinking. Ooh, get her, Lady Muck! Or possibly: Typical middle-class feminist, offloading work on to an immigrant woman. Thats because youre sexist. But heres the thing. When the cleaner arrived he well, he was a he. A bloke. I was slightly freaked out. And thats because Im sexist too.

Our association of domestic labour with women is so ingrained that its hard to see its a social construction rather than an immutable natural phenomenon. In her new film Joy, Jennifer Lawrences character has her big idea a self-squeezing mop while cleaning up someone elses glass of spilled red wine. The responsibility doesnt fall on her ex-husband, who bought the booze (in contravention of strict instructions to stick to white) or the person who spilled it. It falls on the nearest available mother.

Of course, it is possible to make a class-based argument against having a cleaner that theres something alienating or repulsive about offloading inconvenient tasks to those lower downthe income chain. But if thats thestandard, we are wildly inconsistentabout applying it.

Jennifer Lawrence and Robert De Niro in Joy. Jennifer Lawrences character has her big idea a self-squeezing mop while cleaning up someone elses glass of spilled red wine. Photograph: Allstar/20th Century Fox

Im guessing, for instance, that you might have bought a cup of coffee recently from Pret or Greggs, rather than voyaged to the Amazon basin to harvest your own beans. If youre having fish for dinner, you probably didnt spend this morning in waders, catching the slippery bugger. Most of us dont wire our own houses or service our own boilers, or build our smartphones from scratch. And yet theres a deep resentment of working women who offload their domestic tasks on to someone else, even as we tacitly accept that thats what working men have done for decades.

For the last few years Ive been trying an experiment. I speak at a lot of feminist events, and often these involve an all-female panel. Often, a man pops up in the Q&A, or buttonholes me afterwards to ask why feminism has to make men feel so unwelcome. Arent mens contributions valuable? Absolutely, I cry with all the fake enthusiasm I can muster and there is one, huge contribution that men can make to feminism: the washing up. Or the laundry, Im easy. Or going part-time while the kids are small.

At this point, the light in their eyes tends to die. It turns out that when theysaid they wanted men to be involved in feminism, what they actually meant was have someone listen to their ideas about what feminists are currently doing wrong. Not do a load of boring unpaid work in return for absolutely zero praise. But as a 2012 report for the IPPR put it: On most key issues, the route to modern feminist goals must pass through fathers. Men should work more flexibly, take greater responsibility for caring for their children and their homes, and have the right to reserved parental leave.

I dont blame men for taking one look at this proposition and thinking thanks, but no thanks. Over the last 50 years female participation in the workforce has increased enormously, and the benefits to women are clear: more economic power, and more of thefreedom that brings. You might evencallit empowering, if that word didnt make me want to beat myself to death with a Spice Girls CD. No such incentives apply to the idea of doing more unpaid labour in the home.

And so we are left with a series ofbodged compromises, of which middle-class women employing cleaners is merely the most obvious. I suspect robot butlers as per Mark Zuckerbergs plan to spend 2016 building himself an artificial intelligence that can help around the house might be the next. Perhaps we can just skip the bit where the burden transfers from women to men and pass it straight off tolaundry-folding robots?

A robot at a nursing residence in Florence, Italy. I suspect robot butlers as per Mark Zuckerbergs plan to spend 2016 building himself an artificial intelligence that can help around the house might be the next bodged compromise. Photograph: Laura Lezza/Getty Images

These fudges cover up the basic, inescapable fact that our society is dependent on unpaid labour, without which capitalism could not survive. In 2013, the British Social Attitudes Survey found that women report spending an average of 13 hours on housework and 23 hours on caring for family members each week; the equivalent figures for men are 8 hours and 10 hours. We need to make this invisible labour visible.

In the 1970s Selma James and her fellow activists demanded Wages for Housework; more recently, James criticised feminists who allowed the Blair government to decry workless mothers, when those women were often doing more than an eight-hour shift of caring labour. Iain Duncan Smiths welfare reforms have taken this idea to its logical conclusion: from 2017, single parents (largely mothers) will be penalised by the benefit system for not working as soon as their children turn three. Yes, there will be some free childcare available, but not enough. This is outrageous, and has only happened because we dont regard housework and childcare as real work.

The unfairness of our current attitudes was tackled in one of last years most thought-provoking books, Katrine Marals Who Cooked Adam Smiths Dinner?. The answer to the titles question, it turns out, is Adam Smiths mum. Widowed in her 20s she depended on him financially, and he depended on her to have his tea ready after a hard days bashing out Big Thoughts about economics. It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the banker, that we can expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest, wrote Smith, unaccountably failing to add: Oh, and from my mum, who feeds me in return for not starving herself.

Mrs Smith was, of course, a rational economic actor: she got something out of the deal too. But todays working women dont have to wash dishes to keep a roof over their heads. And so a whole social apparatus has formed to convince them to perpetuate the status quo: the cult of the domestic goddess; rhetoric about whether women choose to have children or not, elbowing out any consideration of child-rearing as a social good; even the current bestseller The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, wherein Japanese folding guru Marie Kondo talks unselfconsciously about her seminars for housewives and mothers.

So can anything convince men that the domestic burden should be more fairly distributed? I doubt it, but there is now, at least, evidence that our gendered assumptions about labour are hurting men too. Manufacturing, traditionally a male-dominated sector, is in long-term decline; at the same time recent waves of migration to Britain have been majority female (54% of the foreign-born population are women, according to Oxford Universitys Migration Observatory) because many of the jobs available are in the service sector. Men are now being disadvantaged by our prejudices about womens work, which bleed out from housework into the idea that serving or caring for another human is demeaning to a mans dignity.

By the way, my male cleaner was brilliant. He mopped my floor so that I could generate an income from my work you know, the same thing women have done for men for decades.