Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Cleaning house

So today was designated 'clean up' day at my house. That list included vacuuming, laundry, dishes, the dog, cobwebs- you name it. I'm really picky about what chemicals I allow in my home, but I don't like to buy specialty stuff because it tends to be expensive. Once I bought this hard water stain remover that was all natural. It worked like a charm on my shower curtain... but I went through most of the bottle in one cleaning and that stuff was not cheap. The shower curtain looked awesome but that is not an expense we can take on regularly. So I stick to these simple cleansers around my house:

Borax- simple, cheap, non-toxic. Good replacement for any powdered cleanser.
Distilled vinegar- also cheap, non-toxic. A great replacement for bleach as it has excellent germ killing power. Cut it with water, depending upon how you are using it. Here are some websites that give further explanation:

Baking soda- if you buy this in bulk, it is cheap. This is great to use for absorbing orders on a rug, and mixed with vinegar if you need an abrasive cleanser with the germ-killing powers of vinegar.

Ooooo I just got this email from Re-Nest (www.re-nest.com) that suggests using kosher salt and lemon to clean copper. Can't wait to try that one! Do I even have any copper items in the house? Hmmm...

No, I don't but I DO have some wrought iron that I recently purchased at a garage sale. It's a plant stand, I think. At least that is how I intend on using it.  Looks like it was once painted white, then painted black on top. It had some rust on it and I'm not sure I want to paint it yet. So I waxed it. That's right, I got some wax and rubbed the entire thing down. This will prevent it from rusting and give it a slight shine. You can use candle wax (naturally made candles will be easier to work with), or other kind you may have in the house. Save those candle stumps! I actually used car wax. Clear shoe polish wax will work as well. I am trying to rid the house of chemicals slowly, so rather than waste money and just throw it all into the landfill I'm determined to get rid of them by using them up. 

Need to strip paint from hinges or other hardware? Creative Quilt Girl (www.creativequiltgirl.com) can help with her simple baking soda and water soaking solution. That's one I will actually use, since we have plenty of unnecessarily painted hardware in this 112 year old house! Where do I start? I'll let you know next time. Ciao!

Monday, October 6, 2008

A Girl and Her Blog

si  ren: one of several sea nymphs, part woman part bird, who lure mariners to their destruction by their seductive singing. 

si ren: a seductively beautiful or charming woman.

si ren: an acoustic instrument for producing musical tones.

si ren: a sound-producing device that gives a warning signal, such as a fog horn.

This being the first post on my blog, I thought I'd include an explanation of the title. I like all of the above definitions for siren, but the one I identify the most with is the last one.  Hopefully the things I'll be sounding off about will be interesting to others. When there is no one else to listen, I guess the moon will. 

Mundane as my life may seem to some, I'll share some of it with you. Thanks for stopping by, and upcoming posts may be about:

recycled everything
restoring old houses
greening your home
anything steampunk
did I mention art?
conflict resolution
problem solving
the list goes on, but not tonight! 

blog at cha later~ Cybele