Your house is cleaner than mine.
You may look around at your three kids in various states of dress and undress, crawling and doing the loop-de-loop through your house and think to yourself, “No, you haven’t seen chaos until you’ve seen my house.” But sadly, your house is still probably cleaner than mine.
You see, I like to work. A lot. And if I’m not working at work, I’m at home working. Or, I’m at home reading. In either scenario, I’m not cleaning.
Following normal laws of atrophy, our house slowly breaks down. The windows haven’t been washed since last summer. The couch hasn’t been moved in a year and the dust bunnies have bred and gone fully rabid. The cobwebs in the ceiling corners have started multiplying at a rate that rivals the viral marketing loop of online phenoms Twitter and Ning. For that matter, I’m pretty sure the cobwebs have started sending out invites to their own Ning Network. Reading through their blurbs, it appears that the rabid dust bunnies and cobwebs are considering starting their own band and making it big on MySpace.
All this extra dust and collaborative chaos is all fine and well when it’s just my husband and I. Thankfully, he’s a pretty low key guy and as long as he can make it in the house, to the fridge, and to the bed without any impediments, the rapidly massing army of dust and bacteria are a mere annoyance not worthy of much time.
But, my parents are coming this weekend. That means my MOTHER is coming this weekend. My Mother is the consummate professional homemaker. She cooks, cleans, and knows how to iron shirts. She could win any Iron Housecleaning contest with one hand tied behind her back. It baffles her to no end that her housecleaning gene did not pass down to me. Thankfully, she loves me just the same.
With her impending visit, I have spent two days cleaning the house. The windows still haven’t been cleaned but that’s the last thing that needs to be done before they arrive at 7 p.m. tonight. There was a slight setback though – when I took the Clorax Bleach Product out and sprayed the sink down (yes, there were mutinying bacteria in there as well), I almost passed out from the fumes. I seriously thought I had accidentally killed myself and pictured my easy going husband never figuring out what had happened. He would never suspect the fumes from a cleaning product had killed me since it’s a well known fact that I don’t clean and wouldn’t even know where the cleaning products are located in our house.
After that little light-headed episode, I created a few natural cleaners using products found in my kitchen cabinet and the Bramble Berry Warehouse. They seem to work great. Of course, my standards are low. But, my house is cleaner, smells great and best of all, these cleaners are less toxic and better for the environment than traditional cleaners.
These are my first attempts so be gentle and if you have better recipes, by all means, post them in the Comment Section for all to share in the clean, yummy-smelling goodness.
Two tablespoons vinegar
One teaspoon baking soda
Half tablespoon borax
Two cups warm water
Mix the ingredients together and keep in a spray bottle. Use for general surface cleaning.
To clean stubborn stains from lavatory bowls:
1 cup borax
¼ cup white vinegar
Mix the ingredients together, pour down the toilet and leave for as long as possible, but at least twenty minutes. Scrub the stains with a toilet brush, then flush away. My husband pointed out this morning that I missed a few spots. I suspect this is operator error rather than a flaw in the recipe.
Smelly Surface Cleaner
General cleaner and it smells just fine!
2 cups hot water
1 tablespoon borax
2 tablespoons white vinegar
3 drops lavender essential oil
3 drops tea tree essential oil
Mix the ingredients together in spray bottle and use for general cleaning purposes. Do not use on glass because the oil will cause smears. It was a sad day in our household when I tried to clean the bathroom mirrors with this concoction.
As with all recipes on the Soap Queen blog, please do small test batches and try cleaning to start with in out of the way places, just in case my “mad” chemistry skills are more crazy-mad than skillful-mad.