Saturday, March 17, 2012

My Spray-cleaning Arsenal

Do you ever wonder what's in your everyday cleaning sprays?  I've noticed that most of them don't have ingredients listed on the bottle.  However, the fact that I start coughing and sputtering if I get to close to my squirt and the fact that many of them say something like, "For Use in a Well-Ventilated Area," makes me a bit wary.

To be honest, I'd never really worried too much about my sputtering until one time when my niece (we'll call her LA) was over for the weekend.  She was playing with her xylophone on the living room floor.  You know, the one that plays the same 2 songs over and over and over and over again until you can hear them in your sleep and find yourself singing them a sort of inopportune times -- like while waiting in the check-out line at Kroger?

Anyway, I was about to start spraying away at the dust and grime that had accumulated over the last several days, when I stopped short to the tune of "I'm a monkey...OOoo, AAaa, EEee."

Wait, I can't spray this stuff while LA's in here.  So I took to the dry cloth method, but think I did more harm than good as my dust simply went from the furniture to the floor where she was crawling around.  Needed to think of a better solution for LA's next visit.

Next time I was at the store, I went hunting for green cleaning sprays.  Yikes, those things are expensive!  While LA is definitely worth it, I decided to look into making my own before I spent the money for her next birthday present on furniture polish.

Hello, pinterest!  There are a lot of great homemade cleaning supplies recipes here.  So, over the next few posts, I'm planning to share with you those I've tweaked and tried in my home.  So far I've made an all-purpose spray (great for everything from kitchen cabinets to bathroom counters), glass-cleaning spray, wood furniture polish, and no-rinse floor cleaner.

Now I don't have to be nervous about giving the house a good scrub-down while LA is around.  Minus some empty spray bottles (you can buy a bag of 6, 32-oz bottles for less than $6 at Sam's), here's everything in my homemade cleaning-spray arsenal:

L to R (skipping brown bottles): olive oil (doesn't need to be the good kind but this was all I had), white vinegar, baking soda, dawn dish soap (the original blue kind works best), and lemon juice
The two small brown bottles are essential oils...they're not "essential" to the recipes but do add a nice fragrance and some even have antibacterial benefits.  I order mine online from here, and they seem to last forever.  (The two I use most often are lavender oil and tea tree oil, buy you can choose whatever scent you like best.)

Coming up next: all-purpose cleaning spray!

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