It's no secret that I'm a big fan of making things from scratch. You won't ever catch me buying lasagna from the freezer section of the grocery store or buying canned biscuits. I prefer to make pasta from scratch, roast tomatoes for homemade tomato sauce and homemade buttermilk biscuit are my specialty. I even tried my hand at a container garden last year (mostly unsuccessful, but I have learned from my mistakes) and once the sun comes out in the spring, I will hit the store for some seeds and grow fresh herbs in my window sill again. One day, when we have the yard space, I want my own modest garden. Because fresh home grown produce? YUM! Until then, I will continue to mooch off any friend lucky enough to have a garden and hit the farmers market when it set up shop in the city.
I'm not a fan of preservatives in my food (just to clarify, i do still buy some packaged food, but honestly, it's only a small portion in comparison to the rest of the grocery list) so it only stands to reason that the next logical step would be ridding the unnatural chemicals from my environment. Honestly, there's nothing worse than spraying the bathroom down with Scrubbing Bubbles and then having to run from the room in order to breath some non-toxic air! A while back my BFF mentioned in one of her blog posts that she was using a vinegar concoction as an all-purpose cleaner. I tossed the idea around, but in the back of my head had doubts because I *HATE* the smell of vingar. Seriously, it takes me back to my childhood when my mother would run vingar through the coffee pot to clean it. The ENTIRE house would smell disgusting and god forbid it was raining outside and I couldn't escape to my swing set! So, I did some further research anc checked out my current obsession (sorry, I'm going to keep referencing younghouselove.com because they are simply awesome and consequently, ADORBS!) and they did indeed have a super informative blog about making your own cleaners! I'm especially looking forward to trying the following (these and many more can be found on the above link!)
Gorgeously Green All-Purpose Spray:
32-ounce plastic spray bottle
2 cups water
1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
1 teaspoon pure castile soap (peppermint)
3/4 cup hydrogen peroxide
20 drops tea tree oil
20 drops of lavender essential oil
Toilet Bowl Cleaners:
Liquid castile soap (like Dr. Bronner’s)
Baking soda or borax
Scrub with a toilet brush.
10 drops of essential oil (optional)
Mix together then sprinkle generously on carpet, wait 15 minutes and vacuum.
and who knows what else I'll try after that... maybe something from HERE or even HERE! I take great comfort in knowing that the possibilities seem endless!
In addition to finding natural cleaning products, I've been trying to find more natural skin and hair products. It's no secret that since moving from the humid climate of Houston, Texas to the dry and often frigid Chicago, Illinois, I've been on a never-ending search for a product to slather on my skin and give me the moisturized feeling that every girl deserves! I've easily spent hundreds if not a thousand plus on different cleansers, scrubs, moisturizers, lotions etc. etc. in hopes of something that will rid me of dry flaky red skin and soothe the urge to scratch my skin off. I recently came across this site that provides a recipe, instructions and all the scientific mumbo jumbo that supports the oil cleansing method.
Basically, you find the right combonation of oils (castor and sunflower-or EVOO if you like) slather your face in the mixture, massage it into your skin thoroughly. Cover your face with a hot, wet washcloth until it cools, then wipe away the oil. Rinse the cloth and repeat a few more times.
I know it might seem crazy to slather your face in oil in order to clean it, but honestly? I'm up for the challenge. So bring on the castor oil and let's give it a try! Maybe this will be the end to my search. My skin and my pocket book will be greatful. I'll certainly let y'all know!
For now, that's all I've got in the way of going green. Once I've picked up all the necessary items and given them a try (this weekend) I'll report back. If you have any additional tips or opinons you'd like to add, please let me know! Meanwhile, check out the BFF's blog where in addition to cleaning products, she's been cooking up some lotion and lip balm! Who knows... Maybe she'll feel compelled to pop a sample of lip balm into the mail for me!