It’s that time of the year again! Posted by carol on May 24, 2022 in English Language, English Vocabulary
Greetings, dear readers. If you are currently in the Northern Hemisphere, chances are that you are now enjoying the clear skies, warmer days and blooming flowers all around (unless, of course, that also means that your pollen allergy is flaring up). A couple of years ago we talked about the timeless tradition of spring cleaning. Where I come from, spring cleaning isn’t really a thing – but to be honest, seasons aren’t really a thing either for us either. How about in your neck of the woods?
In our previous post, we covered some basic cleaning terms and phrases that go along with it. So today is time to dig out your notes from the bottom of the drawer, spring cleaning style, and review a few more useful words about cleaning and organizing. And who knows? In addition to a vocabulary boost, you might also get that much-needed motivation to get a headstart on your spring cleaning or on that long overdue home improvement project. So time to get our hands dirty!
Spring cleaning doesn’t start until you decide to do some serious decluttering. You don’t need to be a big time Marie Kondo fan to understand what this means. To declutter is to get rid of any mess or unwanted objects from a room, surface or closed so that it doesn’t look overcrowded or disorganized.
- I can’t find anything on my desk, I need to declutter before I end up misplacing an important document.
And that can be easily achieved with the phrasal verb holy trinity of decluttering: put away, throw away or give away. Although they are all formed with the preposition away, their meanings can differ significantly.
To put away is to store something in the place it normally belongs:
- When you are done playing with those toys, remember to put them away.
To throw away, on the other hand. means to dispose of something that no longer has any use, normally in a trashcan.
- Oh no, this wine glass is broken. I’d better throw it away before someone gets hurt.
And to give away is to offer for free something you don’t want anymore:
- Mikey’s clothes are getting too small for him! I think I’ll give them away to charity.
Our first post about cleaning covered some basic terms, but if we’re talking about heavier duty cleaning, here are a few words to keep in mind: rub and scrub.
When you rub, you make movements back and forth, applying pressure, so as to clean something.
The best way to rub out a stain from a tablecloth is to use club soda and salt.
As for scrub, it is to use an object (like a cloth or a brush, for instance) to rub something hard:
- Grime can build up on kitchen cabinets and surfaces over time, so make sure to scrub it nicely to get rid of any dirty spots.
Another word you will definitely find useful when spring cleaning is concerned is thoroughly, which is an adverbs that describes something that is done very carefully and paying attention to details.
- First you apply the product, then mop the floor thoroughly.
And lastly, don’t forget the phrase spruce up to talk about making something look nicer or to improve its condition.
- Spring has arrived. Time to spruce up our home!
Can you guys think about any other cleaning-related terms? Let us know. Hope your homes are looking spotless by now!
And if you are in the mood for learning abour more spring-related idioms, phrases and proverbs, we’ve got you covered! Have a look below:
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