Cleaning the Green Way
Clean Brass - Use ingredients that have
natural acid such as Tabasco sauce, vinegar, ketchup and/or
tomatoes, lime or lemon juice, and milk to remove tarnish. The
tarnish washes away if you polish the brass item with or soak
it the listed sources. Blot the excess moisture with a clean
Moth Ball Substitute - wrap cedar
chips, lavender flowers, rosemary, mint, or white peppercorns in a
clean cotton cloth. Tie with a pretty ribbon and place in clothes
closets or drawers.
Clean Silver -
Home remedies suggest that plain ol' white tooth paste will shine
your silver. Rub in a dab with your finger or cotton cloth.
Baking soda paste also works well on larger pieces with a damp
sponge. In both cases, rinse with hot water and polish dry with a soft, clean cloth. For
badly tarnished silver, leave the baking soda paste on the silver
for an hour or so, before cleaning off with the help of the sponge
and hot water.
Alternative Method: Boil
2 to 3 inches of water in a shallow pan with 1 teaspoon of salt, 1
teaspoon of baking soda, and a sheet of aluminum foil. Totally
submerge silver and boil for 2 to 3 more minutes. Wipe away tarnish.
Repeat if necessary. (Do not use this method on antique silver
knives. The blade will separate from the handle.)
Another alternative is to use nonabrasive toothpaste.
Sink & Tub Cleanser -
As an alternative to using store-bought cleansers, make your own
soft scrub. The "recipe" is simple: mix 1/4 cup baking
soda with a few drops of dye-free liquid detergent. Use the
scrub on a cotton cloth to clean the sink, tub or countertop.
Plant Spray - Wipe leaves with mild soap
and water; rinse.
Baking Soda Oven Cleaner -
Begin by sprinkling 1/4 inch baking sowing over the bottom of the
oven. Spray water until the baking soda is damp. Keep it
damp during the process (4 - 6 hours). Scoop out the baking
soda and the grime. Rinse the oven to remove the residue.
(do not use this method in self-cleaning or continuous-cleaning
Method: Clean spills as soon as the oven cools using steel
wool and baking soda; for tough stains, add salt (do not use this
method in self-cleaning or continuous-cleaning ovens).
Vinegar Window Cleaner - What is more natural than vinegar?
Try this recipe: 2 C water + 1/4 C white distilled vinegar +
1/4 t clear liquid soap. It works best if you fill the spray
bottle with water and vinegar then add the liquid soap.
If you reverse the order, the soap bubbles when water is added.
Spray on and use newspaper to wipe dry.
Deodorizer - Deodorize dry carpets by sprinkling
liberally with baking soda. Wait at least 15 minutes and vacuum.
Repeat if necessary.
Fabric Softener -
add a 1/2 C baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) to
each wash load.
1/2 t washing soda +
2 t borax +
1/2 t clear liquid soap +
2 C hot water
Mix well and pour in spray bottle. Spray
cotton cloth and use to clean most surfaces.
Use common sense when using the all-purpose
Holiday Air Freshener -
2 sticks cinnamon +
5 or 6 whole cloves +8 C water
Fills the house with the most wonderful, welcoming scent. Be
sure to check the water level and replenish when necessary.
|Clean Drains - To keep
drains free of clogs try this simple step once a week. Pour 1
C baking soda down the drain followed by 2 C hot water.
To eliminate odors in the drain pour 1/2 C vinegar.
Alternative Method: An
ingredient free method is simply to use a plunger or plumber's
|Sterilize Sponges -
Drop sponge in boiling water. Leave for 3 - 5 minutes.
If you have a dish washers, put them on the top basket and simply
wash with the next load of dishes.
Toilet Bowl Cleaner -
Use a toilet brush and baking soda or vinegar. (This will clean but
Furniture Polish - To make your
own natural furniture polish simply mix
1/2 t olive oil +
1/4 C vinegar. Kept in a glass jar, this polish may
be stored indefinitely. To use dip a clean cotton cloth into
the jar and apply to wooden surfaces. Buff clean.
Mix 1 t of lemon juice
in 1 pint of mineral or vegetable oil, and wipe furniture.
|Ant Hotel - To eliminate
unwanted ants (you know the insects, not your parent's sisters) mix
1 C borax + 1 C sugar + 4 shallow glass jars with lids (baby food
jars or something similar).
Mix the borax and sugar in a bowl. Into each jar put 1/4 of
the mixture. Fill each jar with water, leaving a 1/2 - 1 inch
space. Before screwing on the lids, hammer holes (6 is a good
number) in them. Screw on the
the lids and place the jars in areas where you have ants (but
keep away from pets and children). This method will capture
the worker ants but not the queen because she remains in the nest.
|Stain Remover -
Ivory soap works well for most stains. Wet the stain and
rub Ivory soap in the stain. Rinse. Repeat as needed.
Flea & Tick Repellent
- Put brewer's yeast or garlic in your pet's food; sprinkle fennel,
rue, rosemary, or eucalyptus seeds or leaves around animal sleeping