April 26, 2014

Spring Cleaning, Naturally

 We planted some seeds several weeks back, and the parsley, peppers, and kale are sprouting. My echinacea doesn't look like it's going to grow. I think we took the starters out too soon. Oh well, we're learning. 

I made this Easter gift, which I call "The Beachcomber's Skirt," for my 7 year old sister-in-law who lives minutes from California beaches. The large pockets are designed to be filled with shells and sand dollars. 

And, the other spring related news is that I have been experimenting with my own homemade surface cleaning spray. I've tried just vinegar and water or vinegar, water, and essential oils. Around Christmas time I used peppermint oil, but for spring I love grapefruit. But the trick, at least for me, is to mix in a little rubbing alcohol so it doesn't have such a strong vinegar smell. And the combination of white distilled vinegar and the rubbing alcohol makes a great disinfectant. 

In a spray bottle I mix about:
1 c. white distilled vinegar
3 c. water
1/4 c. rubbing alcohol
about 20 drops Grapefruit essential oil

And that's it. We buy the baking soda and vinegar at Costco, so it's pretty inexpensive, especially considering what I would pay for store-bought natural cleaners. The oil I purchased at Chuck's Produce, but you can find them at Whole Foods as well. I've smelled lots of different oil scents, and my favorites beside grapefruit are the lemon and lavender. 
When I clean sinks, the shower and the toilets, I first sprinkle in baking soda and then spray the surfaces before wiping it clean. I use the spray almost daily on the counter tops in the bathroom and kitchen to keep things clean. And I know its safe around food and babies. They usually come along and spray everything for me. Just make sure if you let the kids help they don't take a full bottle and jar of baking soda or your supplies might disappear. I'm just saying! 

Happy Easter!

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