How to De Stink your Garbage Can

The smell of the kitchen garbage wafted a greeting at me as I walked in the front door of the house.  If the kitchen was located in the vicinity of the front of the house this might not bother me, but kitchen is located in the rear of the house. It only takes one time walking into a house that smells like kitchen trash (or dirty feet) for me to try to get down to the root of the problem. Why does my kitchen trash can smell so horrible ALL THE TIME?

I tried a few different things to de-stink the trash, but they didn’t seem to be working.  I tried making sure to spray the inside and outside of the trashcan with my homemade antibacterial spray.  I tried making sure I only emptied the refrigerators on Wednesdays and then immediately took that trash outside for pickup the next morning.  I tried sprinkling baking soda in the bottom of the can. . . nope. . . still smelly.

A brilliant thought finally hit me like a freight train.  The reason my trash stinks is because I eat a lot of real food and when you eat a lot of real food you have a lot of organic waste that goes in the rubbish bin, which then decomposes and creates unpleasant odors. . .

After I digested that thought a vision of the compost bin sitting in the yard taking up space flew into my mind.  We hadn’t bothered to use it since our little person took up too much time to plant a garden the past couple of years.  I put two and two together and started walking my lazy butt out to the composter each evening with all the kitchen scraps and am happy to say that I now have a stink free garbage can.

(As an added bonus I now have compost which means we will have to start making plans for another garden.)

compost

DIY Dryer Balls

Dryer Balls

I’ve been wanting to stop using dryer sheets for a while now.  I have read too many articles that make me wonder if they are really toxic to our health, (and our appliance repair friend doesn’t think they are so hot either) so I promised myself that I would not longer buy any dryer sheets, that instead I would actually make the pin from pinterest I bookmarked so long ago.  It took about a week of being out of dryer sheets for me to get my act together, but I finally did it.

Materials:
100 % Wool Yarn Machine Washable.  I found it at Hobby Lobby.  (With coupon less than $5)
Scissors
Thin Old Sock or Pantyhose
A Small Crochet Hook
Optional: Essential Oils for scent

You begin by winding a bit of the yarn around two fingers.  About 10 times or so.  Then pull the yarn off your fingers and wrap around the yarn in the opposite direction, (so it makes kind of a cross).  You then just keep wrapping in different directions to make a ball of yarn.  Once your ball is the size you want it,  (Mine was almost tennis ball sized) cut the yarn leaving a few inches and use your crochet hook to pull the end of the yarn into the ball.  Repeat until you have as many dryer balls as you want or you run out of yarn.  My yarn made two almost tennis ball sized balls and one smaller ball.  Put your yarn balls in a pair of pantyhose or a thin, old sock.  (I used one thin old sock per ball, because I just don’t do pantyhose). Be sure if you use pantyhose to tie string or rubber band in between the yarn balls so they don’t touch.  You don’t want them to felt together.  Run the yarn balls through the wash on an HOT water load.  I through them in with the towels.  Then let them get transferred to the dryer.  I ran mine through the washer and dryer twice.  Then I took them out and started using them straight away.  I wanted to scent them with a few drops of lavender essential oil, but I was out so I used two drops of geranium oil on each.  Mine don’t look exactly like the picture, but they seem to be working. They are a bit noisy than dryer sheets, but if they are less toxic than dryer sheets I don’t mind so much.

Kiss Kiss- How to make Your own Lip Balm

Since getting into making my own body products, I’ve learned that  an easy product to make (especially since the holidays are creeping around the corner) is lip balm.

The basic recipe I used was:

2 TBS of Beeswax
2 TBS of Shea Butter (you could probably sub Cocoa Butter if that’s all you have on hand)
4 TBS Almond or Coconut Oil
1 capsule or TSP of Vitamin E
10 drops of Essential Oils (such as orange, lemon, grapefruit, mint, myrrh, palmarosa, lavender OR you could use honey, cinnamon, vanilla extract, chocolate or candy flavoring. . . the possibilities really are endless just look around the kitchen)
Tins/recycled containers.

I don’t have a double boiler so I set my glass pyrex measuring cup in a pot in a few inches of water.  I bring the water to a boil and then add the beeswax.  Once the wax is melted I turn down the heat a bit and stir in the almond/coconut oil.  Lastly add the Shea butter stirring frequently to keep the temperature low.  (Shea Butter can get grainy if heated for too long). Remove the mixture from the heat and then add the vitamin E and essential oils or other flavorings, mix, then pour in your tins to cool.

lipbalm

Easy, peasy.  Give it a try!

Switching to Non Toxic Household Cleaning One Step at a Time

I’ve been slowly transitioning from commercial cleaning products to natural cleaning products.  I can’t bring myself to throw away the ones we already have, and will continue to use them until they are gone (and let me tell you it takes years to go through a bottle of windex. . .) but I have stopped buying any new cleaners.  I have started cleaning with more natural products and using things I already have around the house to make my own!

For Bathroom Cleaning I mix up the following:
Vinegar
Dawn Dish Soap
3 drops of Lemon Essential Oils (Or if I’ve run out of the essential oils I use the juice of 1 whole lemon)

I fill a 16 oz bottle 3/4 of the way with vinegar, I then add about 1 TBSP of dawn dish soap and 3 drops of Lemon Essential Oil or the juice of a whole lemon in a bottle, shake it up and then squirt all over the bathroom counter and bathtub.  You would be amazed that using this cleaner, a washcloth and some elbow grease really does get the bathtub clean (even after multiple uses by one grubby toddler and a husband in construction.)

How to make your Own Face Wash

In my journey to make my own household products and get rid of commercial products with chemicals I wondered what I should use to clean my face.  I stumbled across the oil cleansing method from The Holistic Mama here:
http://theholisticmama.com/why-you-should-wash-your-face-with-oil/
and thought, what the heck, it’s inexpensive, let’s give it a try. . .

To make the face wash for the oil cleansing method you need:

A Glass Bottle with a lid.
Castor Oil
Olive Oil (or you can substitute your favorite carrier oil here other recommendations are almond oil, jojoba oil, grapeseed oil, apricot oil, sunflower seed oil, argan oil or avocado oil)
A Few Essential Oils of your choice. (Recommendations are Tea Tree Oil, Lavender Oil, Rosehip Seed Oil, Carrot Seed Oil, Rose Oil, Myrrh Oil.)

For Normal skin use a 1:1 Ratio for every 1 TBS of Castor Oil, use 1 TBS of Olive Oil

For Dry Skin use a 1:3 ratio.  1 TBS Castor Oil for every 3 TBS of Olive Oil

For Oil Skin use a 3:1 ratio.  3 TBS Castor Oil for every 1 TBS of Olive Oil.

Mix the oils and pour them in your glass container.  Then add the essential oils of your choice to the glass bottle and shake vigorously to mix.

To wash your face.  Pour about a nickel size dab of oil in your palms and rub on your dry face.  Use an upward circular motion and massage into your skin for about a minute.  Run a washcloth under hot water and then lay the cloth on your face for 15-30 seconds to help the oil penetrate your skin.  Rise the washcloth and then wipe any excess oil from your face.  (Be sure to use a clean wash cloth every time you use this method).

Cheers and Happy Cleansing!

Disclosure:The statements on this website have not been evaluated by the FDA or any other organization.  Products and/or information are not intended to diagnose, cure, treat, or prevent any diseases.  Readers are advised to do their own research and make their own decisions and refer to their own healthcare provider regarding anything health related.

FTC disclosure: I may receive monetary compensation for my endorsement/recommendation/testimonial and or link to retail products in this article to support my blogging habit.  I will never link to a retail provider I have not used.  I will only link to providers I would personally recommend.

General Essential Oil Safety:

  • Keep out of reach of children and pets
  • If swallowed immediately contact poison control and do not try to induce vomiting.
  • If product gets in eyes flush with milk than water
  • Keep away from heat 
  • Do not leave in direct sunlight

For more safety tips go to https://www.naha.org/explore-aromatherapy/safety/#general

Find Essential Oils at:

Mountain Rose Herbs

 FTC disclosure: I may receive monetary compensation for my endorsement/recommendation/testimonial and or link to retail products in this article to support my blogging habit. I will never link to a retail provider I have not used. I will only link to providers I would personally recommend.

A Journey in Making Your Own Household Products-Butt Balm

buttbalm

If you have a baby at some point of another you will experience the dreaded diaper rash.  About 6 months into having a baby and being frustrated with a commercial natural baby diaper rash cream I stumbled across The Hippy Homemaker.  She has an awesome butt balm recipe that works absolute wonders on rash and red baby bums!  You can find her recipe here:
http://www.thehippyhomemaker.com/the-best-homemade-first-time-moms-kit-or-any-new-mother-for-that-matter/

I altered the recipe just a bit and include tea tree oil in mine.  I have also made it with Cocoa Butter as a substitute for Shea butter when I’ve been out of Shea Butter and it doesn’t seem to alter the effectiveness of the balm.

Recipe

1/4 cup of Beeswax
1/2 Cup of Coconut Oil
1/4 Cup of Shea Butter (Or Cocoa Butter if you have that on hand instead)
40 drops of Lavender Essential Oil
30 drops of Chamomile Essential Oil
15 drops of Tea Tree Essential Oil (Some people don’t feel comfortable using Tea Tree Oil on babies less than 6 months old so you could leave this one out or half the amount (8 drops) if you want to play on the more cautious side. If you’re making the recipe for a baby over a year you could use as much as 30 drops)

I don’t own a double boiler, so I don’t know how to instruct you on how to use one of those.  I place a 2 cup pyrex measuring cup in a pan of water and bring it to a boil.  First I add the beeswax and make sure it is entirely melted.  This takes a little while.  Second, I add the coconut oil and let it melt in the beeswax while stirring frequently.  Next, I add the Shea Butter (or Cocoa Butter), again, stirring frequently until all the ingredients are completely melted and liquid.  Using a Hot Pad/Potholder remove your Pyrex cup out of the pan of water and set aside.  Add your essential oils and immediately pour the mixture into your container(s).  I always use metal Tins for my containers. If you are going to use a glass or  plastic container remember you are dealing with a  SUPER HOT liquid here and you could possible melt the plastic container, or have the glass crack and hurt yourself if you do not use EXTREME CAUTION.  If you are using a glass or plastic container let the liquid cool a bit before transferring.  The The recipe makes roughly 8 ounces.

Clean Up:  I always immediately wash my utensils after making this as the wax will quickly harden in your glass pyrex cup.  I always triple wash my pyrex cup to be sure there is no traces of essential oil left.  I also have wooden spoons designated specifically for using with essential oils and do not use them for any other cooking.

CAUTION: Always use caution when making products using essential oils for babies and children.  I recommend to ALWAYS dilute oils for babies and children.  A standard rule of thumb is to use 1-2 drops of essential oil per 1 ounce (2 TBSP) of carrier oil.  Some experts recommend not using Tea Tree Oil on children under 6 months while other experts put it on the list of safe oils.  Use your judgement and do your own research!

General Essential Oil Safety:

  • Keep out of reach of children and pets
  • If swallowed immediately contact poison control and do not try to induce vomiting.
  • If product gets in eyes flush with milk than water
  • Keep away from heat 
  • Do not leave in direct sunlight

For more safety tips go to https://www.naha.org/explore-aromatherapy/safety/#general

Disclosure: The statements on this website have not been evaluated by the FDA or any other organization.  Products and/or information are not intended to diagnose, cure, treat, or prevent any diseases.  Readers are advised to do their own research and make their own decisions and refer to their own healthcare provider regarding anything health related.

Find Essential Oils and Carrier Oils at:

Mountain Rose Herbs

FTC disclosure:  I may receive monetary compensation for my endorsement/recommendation/testimonial and or link to retail products in this article to support my blogging habit.  I will never link to a retail provider I have not used.  I will only link to providers I would personally recommend

A Journey in Making Your Own Household Products- Bug Spray

141

I live in the great state of Texas where we have mosquitos the size of golfballs. When I first had my son I decided fairly quickly that I didn’t want to use anymore chemical crap on him than absolutely necessary so I looked into making my own bug spray. I looked over some recipes online and decided to try this one from Jenae at Icanteachmychild.com  http://www.icanteachmychild.com/make-it-natural-mosquito-spray/  I altered it a little and this is the formula I came up with:

BUG SPRAY

a bottle of Witch Hazel
12-15 drops Lemongrass Essential Oil
12-15 drops Citronella Essential Oil
12-15 drops Tea Tree Essential Oil
15-20 drops of Lavender Essential Oil (or a few more to make the smell tolerable)

I recommend using gloves when handling essential oils to avoid getting any excess oils on your hands (I promise you do not want to walk around for the day smelling like citronella).  Mix the ingredients listed above in a glass container and pour the mixture into a METAL or GLASS spray bottle(s). Essential Oils can eat through plastic over time so I alwaysrecommend using metal or glass.

CAUTION:  This formula is Not recommended for use in babies under 6 months old!  There is little research of essential oil use on babies and children so it is best to use your own judgement and do your own research to decide if you feel comfortable using essential oils on yourself or your child.  Lavender, Tea Tree and Citronella Essential Oils are generally regarded as safe for babies 6 months and older. Lemongrass is generally regarded as safe for children 2 and up.  I always recommend to test the product on an adult first (um, that would be you) before use on a child. I also recommend to do a patch test of the product on any new users by testing the product on a small area of skin before slathering it on your whole body, you know, just in case.

General Safety:

  • Keep out of reach of children and pets
  • If swallowed immediately contact poison control and do not try to induce vomiting.
  • If product gets in eyes flush with milk than water
  • Keep away from heat 
  • Do not leave in direct sunlight

For more safety tips go to https://www.naha.org/explore-aromatherapy/safety/#general

Find Essential Oils at:

Mountain Rose Herbs

Disclaimer: All information on this blog is for educational and informational purposes only.  The statements/products on this website have not been evaluated by the FDA or any other organization.  Products and/or information are not intended to diagnose, cure, treat, or prevent any diseases.  Readers are advised to do their own research and make their own decisions and refer to their own healthcare provider regarding anything health related.

 

FTC disclosure:  I may receive monetary compensation for my endorsement/recommendation/testimonial and or link to retail products in this article to support my blogging habit.  I will never link to a retail provider I have not used.  I will only link to providers I would personally recommend