Saturday, March 10, 2012

Green Cleaning Part 2~ Living Spaces and Bedrooms

I don't know about you, but due to the nature (figuratively and literally) of where I live, the long winter creates a lot of mud and wet which then gets tracked into the house...  And I do not come from the land of hardwood floors.  Alas, I come from carpet and vinyl.  So here's the scoop:

The first thing I did was go out and buy a "Welcome" mat.  You know the kind.  The one with bristles so course you could probably file your way out of jail with it.

Got my heavy duty mat at Target for about $13 

If you are feeling especially ornery, you could get one like the one at my back door... I should have swept it off before showing it to you... My bad.

This is the first step in the combat against tracking stuff in the house.  The bristles on these heavy duty mats remove a lot of what's on your shoes.  Anything "wimpier" than this won't get the job done.

Now, normal people might say "Now, lets take our shoes off!"  Sorry, toots.  My family (try as I might) cannot seem to adhere to this rule.  Don't know why, they just don't.  So the next step, should anything get tracked on the carpet is to bust out with the carpet stain remover:
What you'll need~
1/2 cup vegetable soap (again, I love Dr. Bronner's Peppermint)
1 1/2 T glycerin
1/2 cup of water

1 1/2 teaspoons of citrus essential oil to cut the grease (lemon and orange work great)  
Whip it.  Whip it real good.  Either in your blender or with a mixer until you get a good stiff foam.  Rub the foam into your stains and wipe with a damp cloth (like the t-shirt cloths mentioned in part 1).  

If it's a pet or child stain, you'll want to sprinkle baking soda (see recipe below for even better results) over the area first to soak up the "stank", if you will, vacuum that up and then proceed with the above recipe.

Carpet Freshener~
I love this because you can experiment and change it to fit whatever mood you are in.  So easy.  Ready?
1 cup of baking soda
25-30 drops of your favorite essential oil

Combine, sprinkle on carpet and leave for about 15 minutes.  Vacuum it up and voila!  
Great combos you could try but are certainly not limited to:
Rosemary n Mint
Lemongrass n Sage
Lavender n Sweet Orange
Sweet Orange n Clove
Peppermint n Eucalyptus
Spearmint n Lemon
Sweet Orange n Ylang Ylang
Somebody stop me!

In a spray bottle, combine the following:
1 Tablespoon of olive oil
1/3 cup of vinegar
2 cups of water
25 drops of citrus essential oil (lemon is best)
Shake well before using

Knobs n Switches~
I am not about to tell you to run around the house with a bunch of disinfecting wipes to eradicate every form of bacteria in the house.  However, it would be perfectly logical to watch the germs!  This is a quickie little spray I make and use for door knobs, light switches, remotes, etc...  Particularly if someone in the house is sick.  
In a tiny travel sized spray bottle combine vinegar (about 1 cup) and 15-20 drops of lavender
That's it!  Shake it up and use it.
Lavender has amazing antimicrobial, antifungal, and disinfecting properties, all without compromising the integrity of our health.  Not to mention relaxing effects to boot!
Remember, this is not a hospital.  We are not trying to rid the building of Staph infection... It's our home, and we are simply not interested in colds and flus.

So, we've hit kitchen, bathroom and living areas...  Smells good right?  Just wait for part 3!  Good stuff to come!


  1. Wow! Very informative. I especially like using products that I already have.