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Bathrooms and Miscellaneous Cleaners

I’ve been sick and we’re still at war over my mother’s care so I’m going to do my best to get more up this week or next depending on how many extra duties I have on my shoulders.

Bathrooms and Miscellaneous Cleaners

Tags: green cleaning, going green, bathroom, antibacterial, all natural

So while I covered most of the bathroom cleaners, there is still the best ever toilet clean and some miscellaneous products that can also be useful in the bathroom.  So today I’m going to share four more clean and green recipes to both save you money and promote a toxin free home.

Now, before we get too far ahead, I do want to mention something I forgot in the last post.  I mentioned that these will save you money. It’s just an added bonus for me…but if you really want to know the cost breakdown (well approximately) many of these recipes came from the thrifty couple. http://thethriftycouple.com/2013/03/15/make-23-homemade-natural-cleaning-products-for-around-12-printable-shopping-list-too/ The link will send you to their article covering around 20 all natural home cleaning products. If there is one that you are particularly interested in seeing the cost breakdown on….click it and scroll all they way down to the bottom where they highlight it. If going Green isn’t enough of a motivator for you here, then the huge savings could be.

I mean for me, I was sold when I learned I could make up to 6 months of laundry detergent (we’re getting to that post soon)…that works just as well if not better than some of the name brands….for 20-30 dollars. I didn’t believe it till I priced it out. Or that I could make a floor cleaner for pennies on the dime. Didn’t believe it until I tried it…but it really does work.

I will give you an example before I get off the money saving soap box so to speak. My former landlady is the one who directed me to this site. She used the detergent and she passed along some. It worked and we kept using it…we looked back to the site and went to their original recipe (she had modified it) and all was grand. We spent around 22-ish dollars in Louisville in 2014 on that powder detergent….when a box of powder or liquid can be anywhere from 9-12 dollars depending on what you like and get. That was over 50 dollars a year we were paying in detergent for the two of us. While with this we made it once and it lasted six months at a cost of around 22 dollars. If you have a bigger family, I’m sure the savings are larger as well.

Now that I’ve put away the laundry box….I mean soap box….let’s get back to it.

The four recipes we’re going to talk about today are: toilet cleaners, drain cleaners, antibacterial cleaners (both a spray and wipes).

Also, once I finish up with my series on cleaning I will be posting a link to all the recipes that are more printer friendly. That was my only problem with the Thrifty Couple’s website. It was really hard to just get the directions.

Antibacterial Wipes and Spray

I’m going to start here because the two are easily made together

Here’s what you need:

  • empty container for baby wipes or clorox wipes
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 1 roll of paper towels (don’t buy the cheapest)
  • 5 drops lavender oil.
  • 5 drops lemon oil
  • 3 drops tea tree oil
  • 3 drops oregano oil (optional as the oil smells but great for more antibacterial properties.)
  • Spray bottle.

.

First you’re going to get a roll of paper towel and cut in half.  Then you are going to squeeze it into a used container for either baby wipes or something like the Clorox wipes containers.

Once you have it in there you are going to pour two cups of warm water over the wipes. Let it absorb into the paper towels. I would give it at least twenty minutes to make sure it’s soaked through.  

Once it’s fully absorbed. pull the cardboard out from the center. ONce you have that out, you are going to pour the excess into the spray bottle to use as a spray or later with more wipes.  

Now you can reach in and pull a wipe from the center and pull it through the opening in the lid. Enjoy.

Drain Cleaner/Freshener.

This one is very simple all it takes is a cup of baking soda and ½ cup of vinegar (you can use either apple cider or white vinegar).

Whether you are using it for prevention, deodorization or to get rid of a nasty clog….first you are going to pour the baking soda into the drain.

Then measure out your vinegar and pour it down the drain. Be sure to have the drain stopper ready to plug the hole so that your solution actually stays in your drain.  It’s going to fizzle and bubble, which is what is going to help break up all that gunk down there.

If you are just freshening and maintaining your drains you don’t have to let it sit more than 15 minutes, but if you are trying to unclog a drain….leave it in there for 30-60 minutes without using the sink.

Then you just rinse out the sink with warm water. You may need to repeat for tough clogs. I’ve used this drain cleaner for plugs in our old apartment at least 10 times.  We only had to go out and buy something stronger twice….and it turned out that one of those times, it wouldn’t have made a difference anyway….it was a frozen pipe that the city water company had to come take care of….Geeze was that a mess.

Anyway….it really is as simple as that.

Toilet cleaner

For me this is the hardest one….mainly because I find it the most tedious.  

Here’s what you need:

pumice stone

1 cup apple cider or white vinegar

4 drops of any ONE of the following essential oils: lemon, tea tree, orange, or lavender.

½ cup baking soda

Another 10 drops of your choice.

Gloves.

Toilet Brush

Put on your gloves and get that pumice stone in there if you have any unsightly rings that don’t just wipe away.  Just like those stones get rid of nasty dead skin…it will get rid of those pesky rings that just don’t want to go away.

Next you pour the vinegar into the toilet. Let it sit there and do its job for 30 minutes. It’s a natural antibacterial and disinfectant.

When the timer goes off grab your toilet brush and do the usually scrub routine while adding some baking soda. I would start with a 1/4th cup and work from there depending on how long you’ve let the bowl go..  Make sure you get around the edges where people often miss and under the rim for the cleanest bowl possible.  

Add your four drops of oil and flush. This is really an optional step and an added measure. Each of these oils is great for cleaning and will also flush away what some may consider the undesirable smell of the vinegar.  Personally, I like the added clean, but if you can’t afford the oils this will work without them….just not as well….at least in my opinion.  

Finally, you really should put 10 drops of oil in the water tank.  This will help flush out the internal system and get the water to where you may not have been able to reach with a brush.  I do recommend this part if only for that benefit.  

LIke I said it isn’t bad….I just have trouble with the patience part of the equation.  

So there are our recipes for Going Green in your Clean for today. We’re going to hit the kitchen next.  Also, if you find any better recipes feel free to post them here or share any modifications. What works for one home may not be the best for another.

Blessed Be.

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Green and Clean Bathroom (Part 1)

Been a rough last week and a half. More problems with mom’s home health care agency. But I’m pulling all the files together to take to corporate and hopefully after that I can take her down a peg or two. She’s caused enough harm. I think getting her out of our hair and preventing her from harassing others the way she’s pestered my mom is for the greater good at this point.

But my personal life aside….lets get to it.

So I wanted to start a series that I could post on both of my blogs seeing as I’ve had so little time to do much else other than damage control for my mom. Last week was a blast to put together. And if we are looking to teach our children or ourselves pagan values, we have to live it.  We can’t just walk the walk. We have to talk the talk and part of that is taking care of the earth. It also means taking care of ourselves.

Now, I used to think that cleaning supplies that you bought at Walmart were essential until I found out about all the toxins in them. Then we tried a wonderful company called Melaleuca, which uses tea tree oil and nothing has toxins in it….not even their makeup. It’s a great company if you have the money, but we were spending way too much on all the things we needed to keep our house Green, so we went back.

Ever since then I had been working on a way to get back to being Green.  It wasn’t because I was pagan. I just felt that it was healthier for me.  It just so happens that later I made a personal determination that being healthy and working towards freedom from toxins in my life was essential to my pagan path. I’m still working on it, with mixed results, but nothing worth doing happens over night.  

However, I wasn’t at a place in my life where I really had the time or reason to focus too much on it. It was around then that I went to college and I really didn’t need many cleaning supplies as much of that was done by the housekeeping staff, but it was also when my health starting to get worse again.  So when I got my apartment, I got back to it.

Now that I’ve explained why I want to clean Green, I want to start by talking about one room. The room that most of us hate to clean the most. It is the room that most of us often believe is the dirties in the house….even if Mythbusters has proven otherwise.  The Bathroom.  

So what do we have to clean in the bathroom?

Mirrors

Toilets

Tubs

Showers

Grout

Sinks

Cabinets

Floors (hopefully not carpet as in our ensuite in my parents double wide).

So what do we clean them with if we remove all toxins from our house?

The following are some of the best recipes I found. Most of them come from thethrfitycouple.com blog. Particularly their cleaning challenge from back in 2013. They have a number of other recipes listed, but the ones listed here are the ones that have worked best for me in my personal experience. Some of my other favorites come from Wellnessmama.com

Window Glass and Stainless Steel

Vinegar and Water work just as well as windex and you don’t have to worry about your child getting into it.  Just mix it 50/50 with water and use a rag to clean as you normally would. Simple enough right? Also, if you’ld like a little bit of an extra kick a little bit of baking soda in that spray bottle can really give that recipe a boost. And if you want additional antibacterial power you can add three to four drops of an essential oil.  The ones I recommend the most often are Melaleuca (tea tree oil), Lemon, Orange, Peppermint or Lavender.  

The oils are also a great investment as you will get a container that can last you a year or two for all of your cleaning supply needs. Just make sure that they are natural. It adds a bit to your start up cost, but some might find it worth it to have that clean smell they are used to.  It also works that some of us may already have a collection of these oils for ritual use.  

The original recipe I found also uses a drip of dish soap, but I found that this really made no difference and actually made it harder to get that streak free look.  

Laminate Floor Cleaner

The recipe here is their third attempt with a few modifications. Again it was the one that worked best for me. It goes as follows:

  • 1.5 cups  Water
  • 1.5 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Several drops of Orange or Lemon essential oils.
  • Mix all ingredients together and pour into a fine mist spray bottle.

Now that I left out the dish soap….just a few drops and they used lavender oils. But any of the oils I mentioned earlier would work.  

We also made our own swiffer pads so that we could use this with our original swiffer set I had for my tiled dorm room.  We just bought some microfiber cloths at the Dollar Tree and cut it down.

Natural Mildew And Mold Remover

Every once in a while we all face the dreaded mold…especially if your life is like mine and you get busy.  For this one I do follow their exact directions. For some reason the Tea Tree Oil worked best for me when we used it in our bathroom.  

To make the remover put a TBSP of baking soda in a small bowl and pour a TBSP of vinegar (white) into it.  You’re going to see it react, but just stir it until it is mixed. Once that has settled you need to add 5-6 drops of Tea Tree Essential oil and mix it again. It’s going to be a thin/medium paste.  I apply it directly to the affected spot and let it sit there for a while. Once it has sat there for, lets say half an hour to an hour I come back and scrub it away. You may need to repeat this a few times but it will get the job done.

Homemade Soft Scrub

This is another great one from the thrifty couple. And it is the only one where I use even a semi toxic product and that is because I just haven’t found a good substitute for the dish soap, but I’m still working on it.  Eventually I plan on figuring out my own homemade version of dish soap that is all natural as well.


Here’s how you make it. Take 2 TBSP (or more depending on how much you need just be sure to double the rest appropriately). and add five drops of lemon or orange oil.  These oils are both known for their cleansing properties.  Then add five drops of dish soap  (hopefully in the same scent).  Then add 1 TBSP of hydrogen peroxide. The original recipe recommends 3% but I’ve found that just about anything you can buy at Walmart will work.  

It’s going to form a paste.  If it’s not thick enough add pinches of baking soda until you get a medium paste.  You may also find that the thickness you need depends on what you are cleaning. So you may have to experiment to find your happy medium.  

This is one of the only recipes I haven’t had luck storing.  It just doesn’t work after sitting around for so long.  

Once it’s made apply to the surface you need to clean and scrub gently with a toothbrush before letting it sit for 20-30 minutes. Then scrub gently again and wipe away.  I have used it on tile grout and a pesky oven stain but I’m not sure I would use it on wood, glass or painted walls just to be safe.  

Total Supply List

Vinegar (White or Apple Cider) Note: I prefer the Apple Cider Vinegar.

Water

Baking Soda

Essential Oils: Lemon, Orange, Tea Tree, Peppermint, Lavender.

Labels for Spray Bottles

Spray Bottle for Window, Glass and Steel Cleaner

Spray Bottle for Laminate Floor Cleaner

Toothbrush

Small Bowl for cleaning.

Also, not everyone is going to like every recipe. I went through a number of sites before I found a set that I liked. If mine don’t work to your taste, try doing your own research and see if you can find something that does work for you. All I’m trying to do here is remove the toxic chemicals from our home because our body is a part of our temple and we should all respect it.  And more importantly, we have to teach our children this by our own example.  

So there you have it. Aside from the essential oils (which are just a startup cost and easily sustainable once started) everything is easily obtainable. I’m also fairly sure that a good number of them might work without the oils, but I’ve never tried that. Also, I like the clean smell without the chemicals so I’m not sure I would like them without the oils.  

Test out a few and tell me what you think.

Wednesday we are going to talk about some more bathroom cleaners to help you go Green in your home.  Then after this week I’ll get back to some separate posts related more specifically to my individual blogs.  
Blessed Be.