I was so inspired after preparing the homemade cleansers and writing Friday's post that I couldn't wait to make a few more preparations! I attacked the bathroom on Friday and I was so impressed with the results! For the bathroom, I used the tub and tile cleaner from the Natural Home Cleaning Recipes website (the paste, not the spray). I was blown away by how shiny and clean it made the tub! I love the scent of tea tree! It is one of those scents that just smells clean! I used my homemade tea tree all-purpose cleanser on the surfaces and bathtub shelves and was impressed with how well it cut through grime and soap. I also find that these cleansers make surfaces very shiny, not dull like some cleaners do. I used the toilet bowl cleaner method detailed on Natural Home Cleaning Recipes as well, and it did a super job. I love anything that fizzes!! For the floors, I used my usual combo of dish soap, vinegar and hot water.
One thing I have discovered is that any of the recipes that calls for baking soda will require you to rinse well, and often you will have to go back after everything is dry and polish away any soda residue. As well, sometimes you need to use a little extra "elbow grease" than with store bought solutions (although, so far that hasn't been the case for me.)
Now, part of the challenge was that I wouldn't use aerosol air fresheners or spray fabric freshener. As someone with pets, these were hard to give up. As I've mentioned in previous posts, I'm a big fan of pretty smells! So I was interested in finding some green alternatives.
I found a recipe for Basic Room Air Freshener on Back-to-Basics Cleaning's website. This recipe was really easy to prepare and it smells really great! I made cinnamon vanilla for the kitchen and lemon vanilla for the bathroom. The only issue with them is that, because they contain baking soda, they will leave residue on surfaces when they are sprayed,but it's no problem to go and polish off the residue. I have found some formulas that use vodka and no baking soda, so I will give them a try and let you know how they worked in a future post.
A number of websites I looked at suggested using coffee beans or grounds as a natural air freshener. Since we always buy whole bean coffee, I just took a few small dishes and filled them with French Roast beans and placed them between some primulas I have on my window sill. They look cute and funky and smell great! Plants are highly recommended. And of course, one of the easiest and least expensive (not to mention healthy) things you can do to freshener the air in your house is to open the windows!
By now I was truly inspired! What else could I concoct? Fabric freshener! I found this recipe on Answers.Com. I didn't have vodka on hand so I just combined everything else and it smelled quite pretty! Again, when I get some vodka I will try that formula and let you know how it works. And of course, as I mentioned in previous psots, please proceed with caution and make sure that what you are using won't hurt yourself, your family, or your home and belongings!
I'm so pleased with how fresh and clean and healthy my home feels since I've started this challenge! I'll be taking a break from reporting on this challenge for a few posts (I have so much to share with you! I've been busy!) but don't worry! I'm looking forward to sharing the whole Great Green Spring Cleaning Challenge with you! Stay tuned!