Jan122017

Boxed Water Is Better

While doing my regular weekly grocery shopping, i came across a display of this boxed water.  The treehugger in me got instantly excited so i purchased a case.

I got home and almost immediatly went for the water.  It tastes great because you dont taste the plastic, and as an added bonus, it makes you feel like a kid again drinking out of those tiny carboard boxes.

Some of the environmental benefits include:

  • 76% of the box is composed of resources, trees. Making it one of the most sustainable beverage packages available.
  • The trees used to make the box come from certified, well managed forests. In these forests, trees constantly grow replacing the ones harvesting removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.
  • They ship their boxes flat to their filler which is significantly more efficient compared to shipping empty plastic bottles to be filled.
  • Their boxes are recyclable and can be easily flattened to their original state taking up less space.

We were able to find this product at our local Vons / Safeway.  If you don’t have one you can visit www.boxedwater.com to find out where to get yours locally.

Jan032017

New Year, New You : Home Edition

Some of the most popular New Year’s resolutions include losing weight, eating healthier, or dropping a bad habit such as smoking or drinking alcohol.  While anything that will help our mind body and health are a great thing, we should also include our homes an our New Year’s routine.

It is a proven fact that a clean space increases free and open thoughts, and can also put you in a calm and relaxed mood.  Here are a few things you can do to start off the new year with a green and clean living space

Clean:  if Budget allows, you can take the easy route and order a maid service to do a deep cleaning on your home. Otherwise, set a few hours aside, and do a deep cleaning of your home. Include your spouse and children if you have any to assist you in this process.  Be sure to use eco-friendly house cleaning products like Seventh Generation or Mrs. Meyers

Organize:  Now that your house is green and clean, you can organize your closets, cuboards, and drawers.  File away any statements or bills laying around.  In the kitchen clean out and re organize your pantry and fridge.  Then head to the closets and fold and organize your clothes and shoes.

Purge and De Clutter:  So you are all cleaned and organized.  Now its time to get rid of all the stuff you dont need.  Take your old clothes and shoes to Goodwill.  Seperate the rest of your trash from the recyclabes and toss them away.  You will feel so much better with less things to worry about

Replace:  Now would be a great time to replace any lights to CFL bulbs, make sure your cleaners and laundry supplies are all eco friendly, and gear your future purchases toward items made from sustainable materials.

Please let us know how well these tips worked for you!

Jan012017

Happy New Year

Happy 2017 from the Green & Clean team

Dec132016

D.I.Y Hardwood Floor Cleaner

Well maintained hardwood flooring can change the entire dynamic of the house.  If shoes make the outfit, then it can be said that hardwood floors make the room.  They come in different types, styles, and can be stained a variety of colors.  The only downfall is that they need to be properly cleaned and maintained in order ro preserve their beauty.

Every house is different in terms of traffic, but most floors need to be mopped at least once a week.  To make your hardwood floor cleaner all you need is:

  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar

Place the solution into a reusable spray bottle.  I like to spray the solution onto the floor and wipe it up by placing a microfiber cloth onto the bottom of a swiffer ( those reusable cloths get expensive and cause unneccessary waste).

If you want to be fancy, you can purchase this refillable mop from Rubbermaid.  Simply pour your vingear floor cleanig solution into the reservoir, use as directed, and your floors will be green clean in no time.

Dec062016

14 Things In Your Home That Probably Need Cleaning

Most of us spend our green cleaning time on our kitchens, bathrooms, and floors.  However, there are a few things around the house that collect dirt and germs that most of us skip during our house cleaning routine.  Here is our list of items in your home that probably need cleaning:

  • Toothbrush Holder: toothbrush holders and the basis for electric toothbrushes can get pretty icky from dripping tooth paste residue.  Soak in hot soapy water or put in the dishwasher
  • Blinds and Drapes: dust accumulates quickly I’m blind. To clean metal or plastic blinds, white with a damp cloth and Multi Purpose Cleaner.  4 wooden blinds, use a cloth damp with just water. 4 fabric blinds, white with a microfiber cloth. Drapes can usually be put into the washing machine and hung to dry. The same goes for fabric shower curtains. Wipe down plastic ones or hand wash in the tub.
  • Types of Appliances: these are often ignored but can be gross dust and grease traps. Wipe down the top of your refrigerator and microwave while cleaning the front and sides. And while we’re at it, Bayshore to clean in between appliances and counters, i.e,  that strip of gunk that gets caught between the stove and counter.
  • Bottom of Rugs: it’s smart to vacuum both side of a rug, at least occasionally, because dirt does accumulate on the bottom as well.
  • Handbags: Handbags are set down on the ground frequently collecting grime and germs of all kinds. Learn how to clean your bag by checking the manufacturer’s website or by using a gentle natural cleanser and washing by hand. Dry quickly to ensure no mustiness, a hairdryer is helpful.
  • Cleaning Tools: Don’t forget to clean the cleaners! Kitchen sponges should be soaked in a vinegar water mixture. Rags, wash cloths, and removable Mop Heads can be washed in hot water. Vacuum filters should be washed every 3 months. You should also vacuum your broom heads.
  • Television Remote: With all those hands using the remote, and with its occasional visits to the floor, a remote can get pretty nasty Without You realizing it. Wipe down with a damp vinegar soaked cloth.
  • Reusable Shopping Bags: Turn inside out and wash to get rid of residual food bacteria. I do the same for my cotton mesh produce bags every week.
  • Hats, gloves, and scarves: Another item used daily during cold weather that often gets neglected, these need to be washed too. Launder and air dry. Wipe down leather with a multi purpose cleaner instead of submerging in water.
  • Gym bag: Some can be washed in the machine, while others must be done by hand. Sprinkle the inside of the bag with baking soda to get rid of stubborn bad odors.
  • Garbage Can and Compost Bins: Make this apart of your regular cleaning routine. Wash with hot soapy water and let dry in the sun if possible. Sprinkle bottom with baking soda to absorb odors if necessary
  • Pillows: Pillows collect disgusting amounts of dust, skin cells, and bacteria over the course of their lives. This means that thorough cleanings are needed on a regular basis.
  • Handles and Railings: Don’t neglect toilet handles, door handles, and stair railings. Wipe with a damp cloth and Multi Purpose Cleaner or white vinegar. Do the same for light switches while you’re at it.
  • Ceiling and Fans: Dust can accumulate on the ceiling, so give it a good sweep once a year. Use a freshly cleaned broom and a bandana to cover your face. Wipe down both sides of fan blades with a damp cloth. Do this before cleaning the floor.

Completing these chores in addition to your regular cleaning routine will ensure that your entire home is green clean from top to bottom.

Nov102016

D.I.Y. Sanitizing Wipes

I recently took a family vacation, and as we boarded or flight and got comfy in our seats, I realized that I had forgotten sanitizing wipes.  Luckily a friendly passenger had a few extra for me to use.  Then the flight attendant came down the isle picking up all of the dry used up wipes people had disposed of.  This got me thinking about the waste at home i have from using these wipes and that i should start making my own washable eco friendly homemade sanitizing wipes.

I tried a few recipes out and this is the one that works best.

You will need:

  • Wide mouth quart size mason jar
  • 20 – 25 pieces of pre cut cloth ( I used cotton t shirts that i cut into 10 X 10 inch squares )

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup filtered water
  • 3/4 cup distilled vinegar
  • 15 drops lemon essential oil
  • 8 drops lavender essential oil
  • 4 drops bergamot essential oil

Directions:

Combine all of your liquid ingerdients into the mason jar and place the lid on top.  Gently shake the jar to mix all of the ingredients together.  Remove the lid and add the cloth pieces.  Press them down firmly so that they soak up all the liquid. Place the lid back onto the jar and store in your kitchen, bathroom, or where ever you use your wipes the most.

To Use:

Remove cloth from jar and wring excess liquid out.  Wipe down surfaces as needed.  You can toss the used wipes into your laundry to be re used when needed.

This idea may not be the easiest during travel but is great for green cleaning around the house and car.  Let us know how this worked for you, or your variations on this home made wipes recipe

Aug302016

D.I.Y Liquid Cleanser / Eco Friendly Soft Scrub

Tough stains in your kitchen or bathroom can take a toll on you, especially if you dont have anything around the house  to scour them with.  Our cleaning team recently came across a shower that really needed some work, so we came up with a mixture of homemade “softscrub” liquid cleanser to help us get the job done.  All you need is:

  • 3/4 cup baking soda
  • 1/4 cup Castile soap
  • 1 tablespoon of water
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 10 drops essential oils

Stir until you acheive a paste like consistency.  Dont be alarmed if it starts to bubble, the chemical reaction will do that naturally.

I then transfer mine to an repurposed container such as old commercial liquid detergent containers or an old dish soap bottle.

We used this on a severly neglected fridgeand here were our results:

Please share you tips or photos with us, or let us know how well this worked for you!

Jul262016

DIY GOOF OFF / GOO GONE

Ever tried to remove a sticker or piece of tape from a piece of glass, or a manufacturer sticker from a piece of plastic? If so, you are probably left with sticky adhesive on the items surface, or even worse, half of the paper is stuck as well.

All you need is

  • Baking Soda
  • Coconut Oil

Mix equal parts of coconut oil with baking soda to make a paste, and apply it over the affected area. Using the course side of your sponge, rub the solution in a circular motion for about a minute or two, then wipe off with a towel or rag. The adhesive and / or sticky paper should be gone and your items for fish that look like new!

In extreme instances you may have to repeat this process two or three times, but there have been instances where I’ve had to do the same thing with commercially manufactured Goof Off or Goo Gone.

Please share with us how well this eco friendly adhesive remover has worked for you

Jul132016

D.I.Y Natural Ant Spray

I live in california, and around this time of year,  those pesky ants line up and march right into our homes.  Inside ants may be found near their food sources, moisture, and in hidden places like wall voids, under appliances, behind window frames and beneath floors. Ants like to live close to people and eat some of the same things we do – sweets, meats, starches and liquids. It isn’t surprising that they like to take up residence inside our homes, apartments and office buildings?

Fortunately, I have found a eco friendly way get rid of the ants in your home.  The recipe only requires two ingredients and has worked in every home I have tried it in so far.

All you need is

  • Vinegar
  • Peppermint Essential Oils

Mix one drop of peppermint essential oils with every one ounce of vinegar and place into a spray bottle.  Spray the affected area as well as any other dark places where the ants may want to run and hide.

Please feel free to share your DIY recipes or let us know how well this one works for you!

Jul082016

5 Tips For Lazy Cleaners

There are those of us who relax best when we’re tidying up. And there are those of us who probably will end up on an episode of “Hoarders” one day. But most of us live in-between, and we’re basically lazy about how often we clean our homes.

For those folks — and for basically everyone — CleanMySpace.com’s Melissa Maker visited TODAY Friday with five tips that will let you be both “lazy” and have a home you can be proud of.