Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Those who know me...

know of my love for Pinterest. To say I'm addicted would be a small understatement.
For those who don't know what Pinterest is, after you crawl out from under that rock, check it out.  For those of you who know what it is, and choose not to browse/drool/dream/pin...well, you are a stronger person than I....

I have two special boards on Pinterest. One I have titled "Re-vamping My Vamp". It's all about making myself over with homemade or all natural items, or things that are low on the $$ scale. I have shared some of them with you in this post.

My other board I want to share with you here is titled "Takin' it to the Bank". It's all about ways to save money in the home...putting that extra $$ saved into our bank account, instead of the store's corporate accounts...

For the New Year I have made up my mind that I am going to do what I can to lower some of our home expenses. Mostly by making and/or eliminating some of the things we use around our home. Let me share a few with you...

#1. Cleaning supplies. Now, I'm pretty sensitive when it comes to scents/chemicals that are used in a lot of cleaners, so it's not too hard for me to want to change some things in the inventory.

I've decided (and believe me, I've been using this for the last 2-3 months so I know it works) to use basic white vinegar and baking soda as the basis for most of my cleaning supplies. I infused the white vinegar with citrus (citrus oils are also a great cleaning agent, and helps make it smell not so vinegary), by letting some orange and lemon peelings marinate in a quart of vinegar for 3 weeks.

That is now my concentrate, I mix it on a 1-4 ratio, in my spray bottle. I clean my sinks, tub, counters, table and inside the fridge with it....and so much more. The quart of concentrate is still not gone, and as I said I've been using it for 2-3 months now!
It's Wonderful!!!

For my tub/shower and toilet I add Baking soda to plain white vinegar and use it to scrub the tub and inside the toilet bowl. About 1/4 cup of vinegar and 1-2 Tablespoons of soda will clean a tub (and it's a dirty one with 2 girls bathing and leaving soap scum behind) and usually the same amount in each toilet bowl then scrub with a toilet brush. Leaves them sparkling and fresh--kid you not!

There are many blogs/websites that share many more recipes for cleaning tricks that use all natural/less expensive alternatives to expensive store bought cleaners...
check a couple out here and here!!

#2 Laundry Supplies  As I've already said, my sniffer is sensitive, so I don't like a lot of perfumes on my laundry (as opposed to the man of the Frumpy House). It gives me headaches and I'm looking forward to using these things in my laundry!

This past week I literally ran out of dryer sheets (I live 10 minutes away from any store, and the closest ones are not cheap big box stores by any means) and didn't want to run out and pick up a box.  Well, I remembered that I had pinned a trick on my Pinterest board about using Aluminum Foil in the dryer instead of dryer sheets. Had some foil in the cupboard so I wadded up a handful and tossed it in with my next load, which happened to be towels and jammies.
Guess worked!! And the person who said that it worked on the blog said it never needs to be replaced!!!
Although, next time I have a large load of sheets and crotched afghans I may toss in another ball, there was some static in those items. I am glad to report that after 2 weeks of use, and approximately 12 loads of laundry still works!! A side note, if you have a small load you will probably hear the ball thunking around in the dryer...

Then this week I ran out of laundry detergent. Not too unusual in the Frumpy House, with 6-8 loads of laundry a week! My mom had texted me wanting to know if I needed anything in the larger WalMart...since she was heading there. I had the ingredients for this recipe on my pin board, except the Borax so asked her to pick me up a box.  Voila!  Mixed it up in about 6 minutes that day and have been using it for 4 days and about 7 loads of laundry....cleans really well and it seems to brighten really well too. I should note, I didn't use the lavender essential oil that was in the linked recipe, as I don't like the scents!

I used my small food processor for grating up the, zip and it was done! Put the ingredients in a cleaned out gallon ice cream bucket, stirred it, put the lid on and shook it around to make sure it was mixed really well.  Found an old tablespoon measure, oh, did I forget to mention you only need a Tablespoon for each load!?!?! Yep! Good to go...for a long time!!

I'm looking forward to making some more things to help out in the laundry. You can check this recipe for homemade Oxyclean out here.

I'll keep you updated and informed on any more of the cleaners/recipes I try off my "Takin' it to the Bank" pinboard on Pinterest. Please, share any great, inexpensive tricks you have for cleaning your home! I've told the husband that I'm going to start making a tally sheet and show him how much money I have been saving the household by doing all this "crazy" stuff as he calls it (although he has been very good about using the laundry detergent without making a fuss).

What are some of your "resolutions" or choices you are making for the new year? Have you decided to change something in your life to benefit you, your family, your wallet, the environment, or life in general? Share some with me...I'm always looking for something new to pin on my Pinterest boards!!

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