At the start of last year I vowed to adopt a better attitude to household chores. Firmly at the front of my mind I had the words of Dr Wayne Dyer “change the way you look at things and the things you look at will change” I set about adopting the new habit of spending 2hours every weekend cleaning the house. My go-to cleaning album is Queens Greatest hits which I blast out of my phone in my pocket whilst whizzing around the house like a whirlwind of domesticity.
My quest to improve my bad attitude towards household chores began like any other clueless millennial, on YouTube. Convinced that I must have missed something, I wanted to find out how other people go about actually maintaining a clean and tidy house. I discovered The Clutter Bug channel presented by Cas an organizational expert with some pretty funny stories, which I’d recommend to anyone and Farmhouse on Boone Blog dedicated to creating a natural home.
Now, this is not to say that I haven’t been responsible for cleaning my previous dwellings or that my parents didn’t teach me these essential life skills or that Mr T doesn’t pull his weight- he really does do most of the day-to-day household stuff, it’s just well- that I used to huff and puff and resent every second that I had to spend hoovering, mopping and cleaning. My attitude sucked.
Another vow I made last year was to stop using single-use plastic and to remove all toxic products from our household, including cleaning products. Following my research, I wanted to make my own cleaning products that would be effective, healthy, natural, non-toxic and smell incredible.
As a lover of history I’m always looking to the past for inspiration. I wanted to use the cleaning methods that my great grandparents would have used. My Mother sent over a link to Persephone’s Release of 1949 title ‘How To Run Your Home Without Help’ a book for middle class women doing without servants for the first time. Author Kay Smallshaw was the Martha Stewart of her day. Smallshaw had been an Editor for both Good Housekeeping and Modern Woman. The book states ‘you can clean most things with lemon, vinegar and soda crystals’ a statement I have now found to be true…
Now, I know for a lot of people reading this the thought of making your own cleaning products might seem ridiculous, like as if there’s enough time in the day? The benefits of making your own natural cleaning products far out weight the short amount of time it takes to whip up a batch that will last for months and months to come. Without further ado here’s my tried and tested Natural Multi-Purpose Cleaner Recipe…
- Ridiculously cost-effective
- Re-usable bottle, so avoiding single-use plastic
- Safe to have around children
- Kind to your skin, lungs, health
- Effective at cleaning greasy stains, surfaces, general all-purpose cleaning
- Smells really fresh and lovely
- 1 cup Warm water
- 1 tsp Baking Soda (don’t use too much or it can leave streaks when cleaning)
- 1/2 Lemon Juiced
- Essential oil- a few drops, you can use tea tree which is naturally anti-bacterial or you might like to use lavender or mint, depending on your own preference ( I like to use lavender as it’s my favourite smell)
- 1/4 cup White Distilled Vinegar
- Glass spray bottle- I get mine from Baldwins
- Label maker – I use the Dymo Label Maker
Mix all the ingredients in to your bottle and stir/ shake gently to mix, it’s super simple and easy to make our mixture. Adapt or repeat the quantities to suit your bottle size. Once you get more confident you can just top up your bottles as they begin to run low.
Since changing to natural cleaning products I’ve found that I enjoy wiping around the surfaces so much more, the smell of the essential oils makes me feel relaxed. My attitude to cleaning has soften somewhat and the fact that I don’t have to inhale really strong chemicals has certainly helped. Although we’re only one household the reduction of our single-use plastic from not buying toxic cleaning products has been so positive, imagine the compound effect on the planets future if we all just made these little changes…
‘The strength of a nation derives from the integrity of the home’ -Confucius