Cleaning Round-Up - Handmade in the Heartland

Cleaning Round-Up

I have been meaning to do a post related to cleaning products for a while so finally it is happening!  I'll be the first one to say that i hate cleaning.  hate it.  I would totally hire a maid service to come twice a month so i never would have to deep clean if that was an option.  So in the mean time i've been trying to find ways to make my life a little easier.  There are a couple products that i use that i love and thought i would share.  I have also gotten into this whole make your own cleaning supplies frenzy that seems to be happening through-out the blogosphere and i have 2 cleaner recipes to share.  Liquid laundry soap and all-purpose cleaner.  The all-purpose cleaner is simple, easy and costs next to nothing.  I used 2 essential oils- teatree because it's antibacterial and then lemongrass to give it a great smell. The homemade liquid laundry soap is awesome.  It's really not complicated to make, the recipe makes 5 gallons and lasts for 180 loads and only costs about $2.50 per batch.  yes you read that correctly- $2.50 for 180 loads of laundry, after doing it for the first time i wondered why i hadn't ever done it before, or why its not the normal thing to do?!  So here are the recipes and the other tools in my cleaning arsenal.  Do you have any homemade cleaning products that you love? what are your favorite store bought necessities? 





All-Purpose Cleaner
2 teaspoons washing soda
4 teaspoons borax
1 teaspoon castile soap (i used the citrus scented one and i didn't think it had that strong of a scent so i used the lemongrass essential oil as well)
4 cups hot water
10 drops of essential oil (I used 5 drops of tea tree, for its anti-bacterial properties and 5 drops lemongrass for the scent)


and you'll need a 32oz spray bottle.


Pour all ingredients into bottle and gently shake back and forth until the washing soda and borax has dissolved. Thats it!


 Liquid Laundry Detergent
4 Cups - hot tap water, plus almost 5 gallons
1 Fels-Naptha soap bar
1 Cup - Arm & Hammer Washing Soda (not baking soda!) 
1⁄2 Cup Borax
Instructions: 
- Grate bar of soap and add to saucepan with 4 cups of water. Stir continually over medium-low heat until soap dissolves and is melted.  * Tip* if you put the bar of soap in the freezer before hand it's easier to grate, i found the soap bar at walmart for $1.97 in the laundry soap isle next to the borax and washing soda.

-Fill a 5 gallon bucket half full of hot tap water. Add melted soap, washing soda and Borax. Stir well until all powder is dissolved. Fill bucket to top with more hot water. Stir, cover and let sit overnight to thicken.


-I used an old tropicana container to keep in the laundry room and store the bucket with the rest of the recipe in the garage.  This soap does settle so when you go to do laundry you have to shake it once or twice before use.  The initial investment is around $10 to buy all the ingredients and the bucket, but once you have the borax and washing soda (which are also in the all-purpose cleaner) you only have to re-purchase the fels-naptha bar for the next time since you use so little of the other ingredients.  

-Optional: You can add 10-15 drops of essential oil per 2 gallons. Add once soap has cooled. Ideas: lavender, rosemary, tea tree oil. ** i use the gain scent booster pellets with this laundry soap because i like a really strong scent with my laundry- however others i know don't use anything and its just fine. 

-I have been using this soap now for several months and i love it.  It works, its so inexpensive and it makes me feel good that i made it :) 
-Yield: Liquid soap recipe makes 5 gallons.
-Top Load Machine- 1/4 Cup per load (Approx. 180 loads) -Front Load Machines- 1⁄8 Cup per load (Approx. 640 loads) 



My favorite store-bought products:

Method- wood for good daily clean.  Ok, so i have wood countertops and for the longest time i didn't know what to clean them with.  This is the best product for wood countertops, i promise! find it at target.

Bar Keepers Friend- gel cleanser.  Stainless steel sinks are shiny again and pots and pans look like new!  I also have used the powder for my pots and pans and its great.  Oh and i was only able to find this on amazon, i looked at wal mart and target and it wasn't in store.  

Dawn dish soap.  I had no idea until i started reading recently that dawn dish soap can do so much. Check out this post and you'll see.  Also i like it for at the sink to do dishes, i think it's the best.

E-Cloth Microfiber Clothes.  OK so i'm absolutely in love with the glass and polishing cloth, i no longer buy windex or any other glass cleaner because all you have to do is use a spray bottle with water and this cloth.  It's awesome! The regular microfiber are also great for dusting and cleaning.  

That's all for now friends! Happy cleaning :)



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