Thursday, February 28, 2013

hippie lessons: a clean home

One of the first projects I took upon myself after The Husband and I returned from the honeymoon was something I had been thinking about for quite a long time. After reading The Hip Girl's Guide to Homemaking (thank you to Ms. Stephanie M. for that recommendation!) and with the wedding behind us, I was ready to take the plunge. After years of loving the magical whitening power of bleach to brighten the horrifically stained old sinks in our rental home, I was sick of having a headache after cleaning the bathroom, worrying about The Cat Who Thinks She's A Dog getting those chemicals in her system, feeling guilty over what I'm contributing to the watershed, and generally hoarding an embarrassing amount of cleaning supplies.

speaking of embarrassing.......The Husband rocking clip-on earrings with two of my favorite people

Here's what I use to clean our entire house***:

Vinegar + Water + Lavender Essential Oil cleans the bathroom, kitchen, windows, basically everything. Vinegar is wonderful at killing mold and mildew, and the essential oil cuts through the vinegar smell while you're cleaning. And no worries, the vinegar smell disappears when dry. Instead of having a bleach cleaner, all-purpose cleaner, and window cleaner, I have ONE BOTTLE. Also, it's great for wiping down thrift store or antique store finds that smell musty or like cigarettes.

Mrs. Meyer's All-Purpose Cleaner is what I use to clean wood furniture, as I have read that vinegar can dull wood over time. Considering The Husband and I built our own coffee table (so much fun! so much work!), I am not going to risk messing that thing up. I love the lavender scent. Mrs. Meyers does not release their formulations for their products (especially the scents), which is why I limit my use of it to only wood. I'm not going to use a product more than I have to if I don't know what it is made of.

Nature's Gate Disinfecting Multi-Surface Cleaner is my answer to smug anti-hippies who worry about the fact that vinegar is not as strong a disinfectant as bleach. This cleaner works as well as bleach, killing 99.99% of household germs. Thyme oil is a very strong disinfectant, but it doesn't pollute your home or your watershed with chemicals. I spray this on toilet seat handles, door knobs, etc. The thyme smell is very strong, but very worth it, in my opinion.

The Shark Steam Mop was a wedding gift, and probably one of my favorite things ever. Nothing but water, and it heats up enough to disinfect the floor and knock out the toughest stains.

That being said, can anyone recommend a hippie toilet bowl cleaner that won't require me to shut off the water to our toilet tank? The Mrs. Meyers toilet bowl cleaner sucks. Any recommendations for eco-friendly products I may have missed in this post?

***KEEPING IT REAL DISCLAIMER: we still use bleach every couple weeks to whiten our kitchen sink, which is severely old and incredibly stained. Not every hippie is a perfect hippie (and I am incredibly far from being perfect).

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