Monday, July 26, 2010

cleaning naturally

i finally did it.

i finally did my last load of laundry with bleach possibly ever.

as i wrote about recently, i have been on a journey this year of becoming a more green/natural household manager.  one of the steps i am taking is to start using all natural household cleaners, mostly homemade.  because i hate wasting, i am using up all of my old cleaners and when they are finished, replacing them with new homemade ones.

i have absolutely LOVED this change in the way that i care for our household.  first of all, it is way cheaper, because i am making it all from inexpensive ingredients like vinegar and baking soda.  secondly, it smells better when i clean.  thirdly, it is better for the environment.  and most importantly, it is healthier for my family.

the other day, i needed to clean the play chair that baby girl was on.  i did it while she way sitting on it.  i was careful not to spray her of course, but it made me so happy to know that the cleaner was so safe that it posed no possible threat to her (it was made from orange peels, vinegar and water).

as of today we will no longer have bleach in the house, a chemical that has been shown to be linked to numerous health problems.  and we wont miss it at all.

do you want to start cleaning your home naturally?  here is my recipe for orange peel cleaner.

*washed peels from several pounds of oranges, organic is best because the peels are cleaner, but i used conventional oranges (it is easier if you wash the peels before peeling the orange)

*white distilled vinegar

put orange peels into a 2 quart container, fill with vinegar, and seal it shut.  allow it to steep for several weeks, shaking periodically.  when it is done, strain out the peels (i strained it twice to get it all out, first through a screen, then through a coffee filter.)

you can use this as an all-purpose household cleaner by diluting with some water (1:1 or 1:2 ratio) in a spray bottle.  i use this for everything, from counters to the floor to the bathroom.  this is also what i used for baby girl's toys.  it also has a nice scent to it!

do you have a homemade cleaning recipe that you like to use?  please share it with us!

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