Tag Archives: Budget Friendly

Spring Cleaning Hacks

The sun is shining, the birds are chirping, the flowers are blooming — and your cluttered closets are calling. Time to roll up your sleeves and whip your home into shape. And yes, this means you! It’s been a long winter and you’ve let the clutter grow, all over your garage, across your basement and up into your attic crawl space. And your bedroom closets? We’re not even going there.

As always, USAgencies Credit Union is here to help! Use this handy list of creative cleaning hacks to banish those dust bunnies without spending a fortune on organizers and cleaning solutions. Plus, you’ll be doing your part to help keep the planet green by skipping over those toxic cleansers this year.

Let’s get cleaning!

Schedule smart

Create a physical list of every part of your home you plan on attacking. Next, divide the chores according to the amount of time you estimate it will take to clean them. Make smaller sub-lists of 3-hour jobs, 1-hour jobs and 15-minute jobs. Post your lists in a place you’ll often see. This way, when you have spare time, you can find the right big or small job to tackle at a glance.

DIY cleansers

Why blow your budget on pricey, toxic cleansers when you can make your own for so much less at home? Try these DIY solutions and hacks for all those hard-to-clean places around your home:

Use a lemon for cleaning stainless steel sinks and faucets. Slice a lemon in half, and rub the fruit against hard water stains and rust spots in your kitchen and bathroom. You can also sprinkle on some baking soda for the really stubborn marks. The stains should now easily lift.

Steam-clean your microwave. Fill a microwave-safe bowl with 1-2 cups of water, 2 tablespoons of white vinegar, plus a few drops of your favorite essential oil. Nuke it for five minutes and then wipe those stains right off!

Use coffee filters for your monitors and screens. Let the gentle fibers in coffee filters leave your screens squeaky-clean!

Clean your shower heads with white vinegar. Fill a sandwich bag with white vinegar and use a rubber band to secure it around your shower head. Let it soak overnight and the water stains or calcium buildup should wash right off.

Tips and tricks

Cleaning is easy with these helpful hacks!

Use a lint roller to dust. Run a lint roller over your light fixtures and shelves. It’ll pick up those dust particles and leave you with clean surfaces in minutes!

Use your dishwasher for more than dishes. Load up your dishwasher with plastic toys, hair brushes, pet dishes, refrigerator shelves, tweezers and drawer knobs. When the cycle is through, clean your dishwasher by placing a cup of white vinegar on the top shelf and running it through its hottest cycle.

Use a window squeegee to scrape pet hair off your carpet. The rubber edge of the squeegee is perfect for gripping and removing pet hair from your rugs and carpet.

Use a hair dryer to get rid of water rings. Blast a hair dryer over the water rings until they disappear. You can also rub some olive oil over the area to return the wood to its original shine.

Let’s get organized!

Banish the clutter for good with these tips.

Create a space for clutter. Create a place for every bit of clutter that passes through your door. You can pick up organizers and storage bins at the dollar store.

Use Velcro to keep drawer organizers in place. Fasten strips of Velcro to the bottom of your organizers to keep them in place.


Happy cleaning from all of us here at USAgencies Credit Union!

Holiday Lights in Portland

December 1st marks National Christmas Lights Day, and all around the city they are going up , which can only mean one thing – the holidays are upon us! It is time to layer on those jackets and scarves, and celebrate with your loved ones. Portland and beyond has several classic light displays that are great for continuing, or starting, family traditions. So to celebrate this fun and festive day, we wanted to share our list of family ( and budget friendly ) places to see beautiful lights.

Fantasy Trail at Wenzel Family Farm

Take a Christmas walk through a lighted, wooded “Fantasy Trail”, decorated with thousands of lights for Christmas enchantment. The trail includes a 40 ft castle with Christmas scenes, a maze, crooked house, suspension bridge and more. You can also warm up by the nightly bonfires, with a warm cup of hot chocolate.

The Grotto’s Christmas Festival of Lights

with sights, sounds and sensations for the holiday season, The Grotto’s Christmas Festival of Lights is the largest Christmas choral festival in the world. Five indoor concerts are schedule each evening. The fun doesn’t end there ; the Grotto’s plaza area also includes outdoor caroling, puppet shoes and a live petting zoo.

Peacock Lane

Each house on this quaint SE block has been decorating their Tudor style homes for decades. Adorned with beautiful lights, nativity scenes and more, this Portland tradition always brings in a crowd.

Winter Wonderland at Portland International Raceway

There are glimmers and glows around every corner as you journey through the Winter Wonderland. With over 250 color light pieces, and many fully animated scenes this will not disappoint. Even better? It is all done from the comfort ( and warmth! ) from your own vehicle.

Miracle of a Million Lights

Head to the decorated 2.5 acres of a million plus twinkling lights! As you tour the house, you will set your eyes on over 20 uniquely decorated trees, with elaborate decorations. Enjoy some of their homemade apple cider, cookies, live music, and Santa! There is something fun and festive around every corner, and you will not be disappointed.

Christmas Ship Parade

Over the course of 15, a fleet of Christmas Ships will set sail on the Willamette River and Columbia River. Bundle up, grab your thermos and pick your spot to watch the beautiful boats float by!


Questions? Connect with us at 503-275-0300 Option 4 or visit our branch at the corner of 1st and Taylor in Downtown Portland!