Monday, April 23, 2012

Green Cleaning-Laundry Detergent


Oh wait, that was yesterday! It is pretty easy to lose track of the days around here and the weekends never fail to go WAY too quickly. But we do try to be a pretty green family and considering that I run the environmental programs at work I figured it was a good idea to make a post in honor of Mother Earth.

Granted, we are convenient greenies-meaning we do the easy things and maybe a few of the more difficult but I am a realist and I know that using and buying only organic is not going to happen in our house but we make an effort every day and I think that is worth something. Hopefully this summer I can talk more about composting, farmer's markets, my meager gardening attempts and other green adventures in our house.

I ran out of laundry detergent last weekend so I thought I'd go ahead and share the recipe I've been using for the past few months. It works for us and Gwyn hasn't had any problems either, no special baby detergent here!

4 cups water
1/3 bar of 'cheap' soap grated
1/2 cup washing soda
1/2 cup borax
5-gallon bucket for mixing
3 gallons water

Mix the grated soap into a saucepan with 4 cups of water heating on low until the soap completely dissolves. Add the hot water/soap mixture to 3 gallons of water in the 5-gallon bucket, stir in the washing soda and borax and continue to stir until thickened. Let stand for 24 hours.

I pour what I can into an old detergent bottle and keep the rest in the bucket. It does need to be shaken (or stirred-that sounds better in a Sean Connery accent!) before use as it tends to settle. And get some help for the first pour; 3 gallons isn't light and a bucket of sloshing liquid can be awkward-trust me, I know from experience dude (thank you Billy Madison for that line-movie references all over the place!)

Easy as pie...or detergent :-) As always, when reusing any type of bottle relabel it so there is no confusion for safety sake and the sanity of those that share your household. I also make my own multi-purpose spray cleaner which is in an old Febreeze bottle. It is now affectionately labeled 'Weirdo Mixture' after my husband sprayed the furniture with it in an attempt to get rid of dog odor. Oops.

One other note for today-G has been on a bit of a sleep strike. Or at least a sleep without being held strike. I can only hope it's a phase, I don't want a spoiled baby who is still sleeping in the big bed when she can verbalize how old she is but it is kinda nice to have a snugly baby right now! She went down easy tonight so fingers crossed....

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