Image credit: Huffington post

Recently I wrote about the joys of spring cleaning and how to make light work of it, which you can read here

And then I cleaned my own house.

I swept and tidied, with a cloth round my head like a proper 1960s Coronation Street character. 

What I didn’t do was take my own advice and clean the windows.

So this morning, 10 minutes before I was meant to be at an important meeting I was instead balanced on a kitchen chair with a soapy cloth and the shower squeegee. 

I don’t know what came over me but the sun came out and I just had to take hot water and soap to the layer of grime that besmears the glass between visits from Wishy Washy Windows.

And blow me down, the difference it made! 

Not only was the whole interior of my room suddenly brighter, but so was my mood.  It was like getting glasses after 10 years of undiagnosed short-sightedness. 

Everything snapped into clear focus and I saw the blue sky and the budding trees with new eyes. 

Miraculous.

Then this afternoon, when I got back I noticed the other thing. 

With new bright light comes a new appreciation of just how badly I’d done the last cleaning job. 

I’d tackled the cobwebs and dust last month, but now there was no missing the smeary traces of many grubby hands. They appeared on the worktops, the fridge, the computer screens.

Even on the staircase wallpaper was evidence of my teenage boys’ handiwork: trails of pizza-oily fingers, left when they steady themselves against the wall at the turn of the stairs; a little light muddiness where their grubby sports bags have banged against the skirtings; tiny flakes of…crisps?  Frosties? on keyboards and musical instruments.

Well I’m not going to presume to tell you the solution for grubby surfaces – we all know Flash and elbow grease is the only way to go. 

But when it comes to wallpaper, I do know a thing or two.

Children are mucky from birth to leaving home so children’s wallpaper is sometimes seen as not an option. 

But wait (drum roll).

Enter decorator’s varnish.

Decorators varnish for children's wallpaper

Image credit: Marvelous decorators varnish

Paint on a layer of this and your walls become wipeable. 

Many people think you have to have vinyl wallpaper to pull this trick, but a coat or two of decorator’s varnish means you can wipe everyday child-inflicted stickiness with a damp cloth.

And instead of boring flat colour you can have this:

Children's wallpaper

Image credit: Why, it's one of ours ...

Or how about this rather glorious wallpapered child's bedroom:

Child's wallpapered bedroom

Image credit: Magnolia wallpaper

So give it a go.  And clean those windows!

Victoria x