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Thread: Trying to Live a More "natural" Life..

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    767

    Default Trying to Live a More "natural" Life..

    Does anyone have products or tips they recommend for keeping a more "natural" (i.e. less chemicals) and enviro friendly household?

    I've got my trusty spray bottle of water & vinegar that I use for some of my cleaning, and I've replaced some of my expensive skin care stuff with good ol' witch hazel & tea tree oil (which seem to work better, much to my disgust - why did I not use these years ago, would've saved a fortune!), and I now have a great, natural dermatitis cream (Calendula). Must learn to cook better (i.e. not rely so heavily of continental recipe bases!) too. But what else is there?

    Cleaning products are so expensive these days! Plus a chat with a Naturopath friend of mine about OH's Wegeners the other day - he has a theory OH's Wegeners could have been "set off" by moving from clean, pure Tassie to polluted Melbourne - made me think our house needs to become more... pure, for lack of a better word.

    So come on - start revealing your tips for a clean, natural household!!

  2. #2

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    Do you also have bicarb which can be used for cleaning also? Bicarb and vinegar to unblock drains, clean stainless steel etc. You should be able to check on one of the websites re using Bicarb and vinegar and I think cloudy amonia is okay too!

  3. #3

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    Great idea, I'll definitely keep an eye on this thread as I would like to live a more natural and self-sufficient life as well.

    One idea I had was to grow my own vegetables, at least some of them. When I move into my rental house I want to plant cherry tomatoes to start off with. No pesticides and I get to rest assured that I know exactly where my tomatoes come from.

  4. #4

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    Also for skincare, try Jojoba Oil - it really helped my skin out and while I kind of stopped using it much (I think I got too lazy) some people swear by it.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Queensland. Australia
    Posts
    827

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    In the laundry I use this mix
    1 cake pure soap ( I use velvet ) grated.
    Place in a large heavy based pot with a litre of water, heat gently until melted.
    Pour into a twenty litre container fill with hot water, add 1 and a half cups of washing soda ( in the laundry aisle at the supermarket ) Stir well and stir regularly while it's cooling.
    I use I cup for a load in a 6 kilo machine. No need for softener as the soda softens the water. For stains just rub with a bit of eucalyptus oil before washing.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Adelaide
    Posts
    12,059

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    I ditched the sponge mop and handy andy for a fibre based cleaning mop and floor duster combo. Mum paid $300+ for a "ha ra" system (Not sure spelling) but I got a sabco mop with a duster fitting and a microfibre? floor cleaner from woolies for about $30 (extra if you get it from Mitre 10).

    cleaning tips - wow didn't know about this...
    http://www.sabco.com.au/content/?act...ips&category=1

    picture of the microfibre flat mop (dry duster and wet scrubber) systems
    http://www.sabco.com.au/content/?act...st&category=67

    hara stuff for those of you with squillions
    Ha-Ra Green Cleaning - green cleaning products and supplies

    Also if you want to get all the inside tips on natural? cleaning products - all are chemicals - even water, and some natural products eg plant derived oils are toxic too. So natural doesn't always mean user friendly. Anyway, get the books "Spotless" and "Spotless 2" by Shannon Lush and Jennifer Flemming.

    Bicarb soda and vinegar with the occasional direct application of cussons dishwashing detergent and boiling water, go a long way. For windows, meths, cussons and water is good with wettex type low shedding fibre wipe thingys.

  7. #7

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    Vileda broom handle with microfibre removeable & washable pad for sweeping the wood & slate floors. Better & quicker than a vac.

    Big fan of the "Spotless" books as well.

    Bicarb & white vinegar rule in this house. Cheap & more effective than everything for sale in that cleaning aisle.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    767

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    I've often eyed off those "spotless" books. Might have to get them! Hyacinth, we have one of those Sabco mops as well - Charlie loves chasing the duster one....

    I think I'd like to have a go at growing my own veggies when we move back to Tas - my dad has an amazing veggie garden and I miss it. Not sure how I'll go though... no doubt there'll be lots of "Daaaaddddd come help me!" moments!

    Can anyone elaborate a bit more on the bicarb/vinegar mixtures?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Adelaide
    Posts
    12,059

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    This is one of the toilet cleaning tips...

    start with a freshly flushed toilet. Scoop all the water out of the bowl with a paper or plastic cup (so you don't chip anything) - I actually use the dunny brush to push most of it down the s bend...

    lightly sprinkle the entire bowl with bicarb soda

    one of those icing sugar shaker things is great for this. I got one at our local foodland/iga for under $2 or you can go to woolies and get one for $10 if you want (wtf?).

    Then sprinkle with an "equal" amount of white vinegar.
    I think I will need a dedicated squirty bottle for vinegar...

    While the bicarb and vinegar is fizzing, scrub with the dunny brush.

    repeat if needed. If really grotty, pour hot water directly from kettle into dunny.

    Those ingredients are safe for septic too.

    for final finish she says
    lightly spray with a mix of
    1 teaspoon of lavendar oil in a 1 litre spray bottle

    (there's another one I have to get)
    she says that adds a layer of protection to the ceramic toilet bowl
    and she says you shouldn't let the "yellow mellow" for more than a few hours or the acid will damage the ceramic. And it pongs.

    so basically you sprinkle with bicarb then you spray with vinegar (dilute for marble tiles), and wipe off. Although sometimes you can clean off the bicarb with just a wet sponge. Depends how dirty the surface is.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie & Bella's mum View Post
    Can anyone elaborate a bit more on the bicarb/vinegar mixtures?
    Pretty easy really. I've got the bicarb in a cheese shaker & the vinegar in a sports drink bottle with squirter. For whatever you want to clean ..... shake some bicarb on, then sprinkle some vinegar. While the mixture is foaming, clean.

    For example .... I've got a stainless steel stove exhaust canopy. It regularly gets a build up of grease & dust on the outside of the canopy because I'm cooking in the kitchen for over 12 hours a day, 7 days a week. Get a couple of pieces of paper towel, fold into a pad. Good sprinkle of bicarb, a bit of a sprinkle of vinegar & while it's foaming, start to scrub. When the canopy is all clean, final wipe over with the vinegar or lemon juice. All those expensive commercial cleaners just don't match this method. Quick, effective & very cheap.

    I also chuck the bicarb around the toilet bowl, sprinkle the vinegar & scrub like mad while it's foaming.

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