Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Clean House - the easy way
Here is a secret...I really hate to clean. Okay, its not really a secret, but it finally pushed me to the limit. Cleaning just got too complicated. It shouldn't be complicated, right? But it can be. I mean, how many different types of cleaners do I need? 1 for my kitchen surfaces, 2 for my floors, 3 for my bathrooms, etc. All the specified cleaners drove me nuts! When it came time to clean and I'd be out of something it meant another trip to the store or a challenge in my thinking...will the toilet still be clean if I don't use the Clorox? Not only did the number of cleaners kill me, but the number of paper towels I used. Using paper towels meant another cleaning tool to keep in stock, and a lot more trash. Cleaning became a high bar I didn't really care to reach. I mean, I want a clean house, of course!, but where does this become a unhealthy obsession? I needed to draw my own line of "its clean, enough" so I could have so fun around here!
So, I changed the way I cleaned house. I didn't go looking for solutions, they were kind of something I'd stumble upon and implemented over time.
Previously I mentioned a few inspirations here that changed my cleaning ways. How have I changed, you ask? Well I'll tell you. Its simple really (SIMPLE, now doesn't that sound nice?) It may not sound simple, but it is...I make my own cleaning solution! I know what your thinking...'how is that simple?' Its simple because I no longer have to remember to buy disinfecting solutions for each room in my house. Now I have one cleaner and it takes care of it ALL. I know its non-toxic, natural, fresh, and easy to make.
The recipe I use in a spray bottle:
1/2 White Vinegar (natural disinfectant)
1 tsp Dr. Bonner's Castile Soap (comes super concentrated and in multiple fragrances)
*for glass surfaces, omit the castile soap
I buy the white vinegar in a 1 gallon jug 2x a year, and castile soap 1x a year both at the local grocer. You can also buy it here. It has so many uses, from laundry detergent to baby shampoo. So gentle yet does the job. Although vinegar has a strong odor, it disappears when it dries, leaves no streaks, and kills mold/mildew.
If I need an extra scrubby gritty cleaner, I use good old-fashioned Borax! Find it on the laundry isle and the box will tell you all its wonderful uses. I use it in the toilet, laundry, shower, oh and its wonders on chrome; sparkle city! It wont scratch the finish I promise!
Other really useful tools in my cleaning bucket are microfiber cloths and rags from old towels. No more paper towels! We haven't purchased any since...gosh I can't remember. Peroxide is great for tough stains on carpet, upholstery and clothes. And Baking Soda is great for killing odors and some stains. My home no longer consists of bleach or other harsh chemicals.
I guess you can say this is a little old school. Women used to dust, sweep/vacuum and use just plain soap to clean house. Their children survived, or at least my parents did and I'm here to prove it! Ha ha.
I just thought I'd share this because I thought it might help others to lower their bar in cleaning. Life is too short to clean all the time. Do what needs doing and enjoy the outdoors (where God keeps a clean house!)