My sister-in-law, Lucinda, is one of my favorite people on the planet (and not just because she is the main caretaker to the cutest kid under 18 on the planet, my niece, Elsa…) She’s a great cook, a huge encouragement to my kids, and she puts up with my baby brother on a daily basis. A saint, really.

But little did I know the secret talents that my sister-in-law possessed in the stain-removal area. (Honed to perfection by the cute girl sliding down the tube, pictured…)

My mom told me, with great admiration in her voice, that Lucinda could “Get any stain out of anything.”

And since this blog is all about getting to the good stuff in life, I thought that if we all had a sure fire stain removal system, that could free up hours every year to do more exciting things like write a book, start a non-profit, or redecorate a room. (Or perhaps I am just REALLY bad at stain removal…)

Here is Lucinda’s surefire strategy:


1) Spray with stain remover

2) Rub and let set for a while

3) Put garment  in a bucket of water mixed with Oxi Clean and water (I would say 1/4 c or Oxi Clean per 1-2 gallons of water,) and let soak until I wash a load of clothes.  Sometimes there is more then one bucket depending on the the colors of garments.

 I check the stained items before transferring them to dryer; if the stain is still visible I put the garment aside and start the process over again (though the stains often come out even after going through the dryer).  Sun exposure helps lighten stains.  

 There are great ideas on the internet, including many that are environmentally friendly.  Peroxide with liquid laundry detergent works wonders on wine stains, my mom even used it to clean a doggie vomit stain from her carpet.  I rarely follow the advice of testing for color fastness on a section of fabric that is inconspicuous; I either try to get red of the stain or just live with it.  

I think it all comes down to a little elbow grease & persistence (like many things in life).  Oh, and it is probably true that smarter women (and/or men) worry far less about the stains in their children’s clothes.”

I couldn’t agree with her last couple of sentences more…