Green cleaning

Cleaning. Not my favorite chore in the world. Like I regularly tell my friends and my husband, I’d rather cook than clean and so it works out when I cook for them and they in turn do the dishes. When it comes to household cleaning, I’m guilty of letting dust gather till you can legibly write messages in them. I’ll let the bathroom sink accumulate water spots till the natural shine of the ceramic is dull and hard water stains are clearly noticeable. I’ll let clothes pile up in the closet and not feel the need to organize them for days. Not to say that I’m super dirty and messy. I think I’m naturally a “cleaner” person (you know what I mean when you’ve been around truly messy people) but I don’t take it upon myself to have the kitchen floor polished and scrubbed at all times and the shelves meticulously dust free at all times.

The best occasion for me to clean the apartment is when I’m having people over. (I attribute it to my upbringing. When I was younger and we’d have company over, my mom would go on a cleaning frenzy, with chores for every member of the family.) If you’ve been over to our apartment and thought “wow, it’s neat and clean,” let me tell you, I spent the last couple of hours vacuuming, dusting, and scrubbing the sink before you walked through the door. Whew, now that’s off my chest, the topic of cleaning products… Like most people out there, I currently use glass cleaner for the windows and glass, bathroom cleaner for the bathroom, toilet cleaner for the toilet, carpet cleaner for the spots on the carpet, etc, etc. And there’s been a couple times I sprayed the bathroom floor, inhaled what came out of the nozzle and coughed till I had tears in my eyes. Anybody know what I’m talking about? Anyone??

I think we all instinctively know that what’s in those cleaner bottles can’t be that good for our lungs or our health in general. But because we buy into what the cleaning companies tell us, that there’s germs everywhere that will make us deathly sick, that we need a different cleaner for each room and each cleaning task to be truly clean, when we go to the store, we dutifully purchase spray bottles, antibacterial wipes, and disposable clothes for each of our cleaning needs. And on cleaning day, we rifle through our under-the-sink cabinets full of various cleaning products to accomplish our mission. What did people do in the days before all these cleaners and single-use antibacterial products? I’m mostly certain they didn’t wallow in their filth and in germs just because they didn’t have Lysol, Swiffer, and Scrubbing Bubbles. So I’m going to experiment on the old school ways of cleaning: with distilled vinegar, baking soda, salt, and citrus. First, I’ll need to figure out what to do with all the toxic chemicals sitting in my apartment under the guise of “household cleaners.” Then I’m going to make this:

Citrus vinegar cleaner

So, hang on for a follow up post! I’ll have the inside scoop on the effectiveness of this magical compound.

In the mean time, take a look at this list: “Over 60 ways to use salt.”

Did you know salt is an amazing condiment that not only makes food taste good but can take on numerous cleaning tasks and other chores around the house?? Some that blew me away:

– Remove wine from carpet
– Remove watermarks from wood
– Freshen the garbage disposal
– Scrub off burned milk
– Remove lipstick marks from glassware
– Prevent grease splatters
– Keep salad crisp
– Keep your milk fresh
– Prevent mold on cheese
– Remove perspiration stains
– Set the color in new towels/clothes
– Open hair-clogged drains

Citruses (especially lemons) also have amazing properties that make them super useful aside from culinary purposes: “27 household uses for citrus fruit.” Skim through it. Trust me, you’ll want to stock up on lemons next time you’re at the grocery store. Or plant a lemon tree.

3 thoughts on “Green cleaning

    1. Sharon

      Caroline, since you’re going thru the trouble of saving money and making your home made solutions, I think it’s only fair DSY does the cleaning then.
      Ha I know what you mean about only cleaning when having people over. Maybe if Nate and I come over for a visit, it’ll inspire you to clean…;)


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