How I Control Summer Messes

Plus Some Handy Paper Towel Tips

How I Control Summer Messes

Summer is a super fun and super messy time of year. The combination of kids being home from school, the melting drippy treats, and outdoor activities of this time of year can all lead to a mess at any given moment. But with a little advance planning, you can be ready to take care of any messes around your house, in the car, and when your family ventures out on summer adventures.

Does this sound familiar? A loud "Muuuuumm!" from the kitchen leads me to find the Kid standing in a puddle. He's dripping wet because clearly he just lost the super soaker battle he'd been having with his dad in the back yard. And of course the grass was freshly cut before the war began so not only is he wet but he and the floor are also covered in bits of grass. And he's asking me to cut open a freezie for him.

Kid + super soaker + freshly cut grass + melting freezie = disaster in my kitchen!!

When Scott Towels asked me to share some of my tips to keep summertime messes under control, it was a perfect match because paper towels are my go-to for spills and are an indispensable tool to manage messes at our home—especially in the summer months. Luckily, it's just a 2 minute drive to Loblaws so it's easy for us to keep stocked up!

So here are 3 quick and easy things you can do to be prepared for messes all summer long:

1. Set Boundaries to Contain Messes

Messes are more likely to happen in some areas of my house over others. Tracking the outside in makes the entrances the number one place where grass, sand, mud and water build up. Setting up some ground rules for entering can help contain messes in entrances instead of tracking them all the way through the house. In our front mudroom, we have 3 boot trays—one for each person in our family. When you come in the house, shoes are taken off before going inside and they go into your tray. Dirt is contained, just the way I like it. 

At the back door, we don't have much room and the door opens right into our kitchen. But there is a mat at the door and we try to reinforce with the Kid that if he is dirty from the back yard, he needs to stay on the mat. And even if it doesn’t work, he usually knows enough to stick in the kitchen. Additionally, all freezies and ice cream cones are only eaten in the kitchen to keep that mess on wipe-able surfaces.

Scott Towel Tip: Wrap freezies in a paper towel before passing to the kids. This keeps little fingers from getting too cold and catches drips right away.


2. Put Things Where You Need Them

I'm a huge fan of putting things where you need them. Keeping little stashes of cleaning supplies in strategic locations around the house means that at a moment's notice, you'll be able to quickly clean up messes and spills as they happen. Put a caddy with your favourite household cleaner and a roll of paper towels in key locations—maybe in the kitchen, near front and back entrances, in bathrooms, in the shed, in the garage, or in the laundry area. I suggest one caddy on each floor of your home and then, since Scott Towels are so affordable, find a few more handy spots to hide an extra roll here and there.

Scott Towel Tip: If you use Scott’s Create-A-Size towels, you can tear off smaller pieces for smaller spills. I love this because I can save money and paper towel by using the right-sized towel for the job at hand. And with super absorbent towels, a little goes a long way.


3. Be Ready When You’re on the Go

When we're on the go in summer months, anticipating messes in the car and out on summer adventures makes our summer fun manageable, which let's me relax and have fun! We love venturing out on day-trips and wait all year long for our annual trip to the cottage. If the house is my temple, the car is Mr. Org's temple. He loves a clean car. So we pack snacks for the road that aren't too crumbly or drippy. And if we're on the road and we want to have something to eat that would be a disaster in the car, we pull out the mat that we always keep in the trunk and head to a park or rest stop to spread out and enjoy our treat far from our vehicle.

Our trunk also holds other supplies to help us when inevitable messes occur. We keep extra shopping bags in the trunk for those days when the Kid's shoes come back with half the sandbox in them or when he "accidentally" goes into the lake with all his clothes on.

And again, a roll of paper towel tucked in the trunk always comes in handy. Often for the Kid's ice cream covered face, but sometimes for when I spill my coffee. OK… truthfully the latter happens more often than the former. ;)

Scott Towel Tip: Fold up a few sheets of paper towel and put them inside plastic baggies. Slip the baggies into your purse, kid's snack bag and glove compartment. That way whether you're on the road or walking through the zoo when a spill happens, you are ready to clean up.


I'm looking forward to a summer filled with fun messes…that can be cleaned up quickly!

Check out our Messy Summer Fun section full of tips, tricks and advice to keep on top of summer messes while having a great time.

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