Monday, April 1, 2013

Spring Cleaning on the Cheap

The windows are all open
and the breeze through the house feels wonderful.

Looks like a high of 84 degrees today
and in the 90's later this week.

Makes a woman feel like cleaning!

I don't have children at home anymore 
so cleaning is not such a chore for me.

Brian is relatively neat,
never misses the waste basket and
never leaves dirty clothes on the floor.

I consider myself blessed.

What I don't care for are the prices of store bought 
cleaning products.
About a year ago I began to make my own.

It took a lot of trial and error
to find the products that worked for me.

Everything I use was either found on 
Elaine's blog: Sunny Simple Life

I've had a few friends ask me what I use
and for the recipes to these
so I thought I would just post them here.

All you will ever need to buy:
Dawn Dish Soap
Rubbing alcohol
Baking Soda
Arm & Hammer Washing Soda
Mule Team Borax
Cheap Hair Conditioner (Suave)
essential oils (optional)

Here are my tried and true favorite homemade cleaners.

Homemade Laundry Stain Remover - from Elaine

1 part Ammonia
1 part Dawn 
1 part water

 Put in squeeze bottle.  
Apply to stain, wait 15 minutes then wash.

Homemade Laundry Soap

3 Tablespoons Borax

3 Tablespoons Washing Soda
4 Tablespoons Dawn Dish soap

Put these ingredients in a large jug.
Pour 4 cups hot water into the jug.
Swirl until ingredients are dissolved in the liquid.
Then fill almost to the top with cold water.
(I've done the grated soap method before and found
this one above works just as well and only take 1 minute to make) 
Also, it's low sudsing so I can use it in my high efficiency washer.
For my whites, I add some OxyClean to the load.

Granite Cleaner or Pergo Floor Cleaner

½ cup rubbing alcohol
1 tsp Dawn 

14 drops of essential oil (lemon or orange)

Fill spray bottle to top with hot water
(When I had formica counters,
I used vinegar instead of alcohol, granite doesn't like vinegar)

Carpet Cleaner

2 ½ cups vinegar
2 scoops Oxyclean

Dissolve and add to carpet cleaning machine 
and fill the rest of the way with hot water.  

Homemade Fabric Softener

6 cups of hot water
3 cups white vinegar
2 cups of Suave hair conditioner

Mix conditioner and hot water until conditioner is dissolved.  
Add vinegar.  Use 1/8 cup per load

      Bathtub Cleaner

1 part vinegar
1 part Dawn dish soap
Mix in a spray bottle, and spray on tub.  
Let sit for 15 minutes and then wipe.

      Toilet Cleaner

1 cup vinegar
1/2 cup baking soda
sprinkle baking soda in the toilet.
Add vinegar and smile when you see the bubbles.
Because bubbles are fun.
Swish with your toilet brush and then flush.
(I also keep a bleach tablet in the toilet tank)

I buy my vinegar, baking soda and alcohol in bulk at Costco.
Everything goes a long way and will last for several months.

I have several others that I use
and you can find them on my
Pinterest Board marked Favorite Homemade Cleaners.

Another trick I've learned is to make my own 
cleaning wipes.

Pull about 10 paper towels off the roll
and shove them into a mason jar with a lid.
I pour my granite cleaner over these
just enough to moisten them
and keep the sealed jar under my bathroom sinks.
Removes hairspray off the counter tops really well.
Just pull one out and tear it off.

I've also made my own
Swiffer Wet Jet Pads using old microfiber cloths.
I stitched Velcro on them to hold them in place.
I refill the Swiffer bottle with the 
homemade Pergo floor cleaner above.

Hope you're enjoying your spring weather,
whatever it may be.

Let me know if you try any of these
and how they work for you.

Elaine, thanks for all your great advice!




Lisa Tucker said... are too smart! That is great! Thanks for the info....hope I will make some changes around here. Thanks!

RoeH said...

I love recipes like this. I've made Clorox Clean-up for quite a while now. So easy. I'm keeping this post handy. Did I miss how to make Laundry softener? THAT's what I think is too expensive. Plus all the other stuff, too.

Amy said...

I definetly need to try the Granite cleaner. It seems like my Granite counter tops never look clean. Of course, they are also black so that could be part of the reason.

Anonymous said...

there a a couple new ones here for me, I wrote them down, thanks so much for sharing!
Think of me when you're out having ice tea and soaking up the sunshine and warmth, mean while I'll be freezing my butt off up north!

Kris said...

It is Spring Cleaning time, isn't it. I am cleaning like a mad woman today. My Dusty boy has started to shed his winter coat, and oh my goodness the dark brown hair is everywhere!!! Ugh!!! Good thing I love him so much!!!
I make my own powdered laundry soap. And I keep a wand with scrub pad filled with Dawn and vinegar in the shower to clean. Best stuff ever!! I still love my fabuloso for floors though. Love the scent, and love how it cleans. Look at you...all empty nester and everything.. Here I am with a full house!!! Sheesh!!!
Love ya,
PS did I tell you I loved your card? I did!

Laraine Eddington said...

Wow. This is the first of your posts I've ever printed. You are a smarty pants young lady.

Genn said...

Holly you are a GENIUS!!
I LOVE all of your recipes for cleansers. Thanks so much for sharing!
And GENIUS to buy the bulk of it at Costco!!! I wouldn't have even thought of that. I love your swiffer pads you made too. I hate buying those darn things. Great idea.

And our countertops look very similar I think!:)

Deidra Schaefer said...
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