Friday, 2 March 2012
My All Natural Cleaning Arsenal
When I had my own children my resentment for everything healthy began to melt away. In many ways I have become my mother (minus that nifty bandana thing she wore on her head, and the bell bottom jeans). I make most of my food from scratch, to save money and because I like to know what my children are eating. I draw the line at carob chip cookies, but different strokes for different folks. I am now really coming around to natural cleaners. I think if they are toxic to germs then what are they to us?
Bathtub scrub - In my upstairs bathroom I keep a large preserve jar full of a mixture of equal parts baking soda with coarse salt. This makes the best bathtub cleaner. For really bad soap scum (for when I have been lazy) I like to mix the baking soda / salt with lemon juice. I make a paste of it, then scrub scrub scrub. This works really great for cleaning the top of the stove also. The salt is a great abrasive and like I said, the lemon juice is a natural bleaching agent.
Microwave Cleaner - To clean my microwave I put a cup of lemon juice and water in the microwave and zap it for 5 minutes. Let it cool a bit, then wipe away. It makes the microwave smell great and you don't need to wash the chemicals off, because there are none!
Laundry freshener - I recently purchased some Borax so that I could make "goop" with the kids. I read on the box that it was a "natural freshener". It just so happened that a certain little girl was on a real bedwetting streak, and I had some not so great smelling sheets that needed cleaning. Normally I add a healthy dose of Lysol to pee sheets, but I thought I would put Borax to the test. I have a new love! Not only did the sheets not smell like urine, they smelled like I had just brought them in from the clothes line. Not only that, they felt softer, not only that, they looked brighter. So I have stumbled upon an ancient product that is naturally occurring that seems to be a miracle. I just did a load of grimy socks. I try not to bleach them too much because it breaks down the fibers, so my socks have a little bit of a grey ting to them. I decided to do a little experiment. I soaked the socks in the washing machine with a healthy dose of Borax for 15 minutes. I added lemon juice to the rinse cycle. I then rewashed them because my family has really sensitive skin. The socks are now white. I think I'm in love.
Removes baked on food - Last night I discovered pure magic. I had made sausages for dinner. I baked them in my stone wear lasagna dish which I love. It is however not that easy to clean baked on food off of it. I tried another experiment last night. I sprinkled baking soda really thick in the dish, then poured apple cider vinegar ( I know I'm a hypocrite, but the apple cider vinegar does not smell as bad as white vinegar). I let it sit overnight. This morning I did not expect anything. I figured that I would have to scrub until my arm fell off to get the baked on food off. So I emptied the dish into the sink, and the baked on food, all slid out. I could not believe my eyes! This is a WONDERFUL trick that I will use in the future.
I am now going to do a lot more experimentation with natural cleaners. So if you hear about a house explosion in Tweed, that would probably be me.