Are you a mom that never seems to stop…by Nanette

Homemade cleaner

In an effort to leave a smaller footprint behind, many people are switching to an all-natural lifestyle. Not only in their food and car choices, but also in how they treat and clean their homes.
If you desire to change the footprint you leave behind, or at least to avoid harmful chemicals and save money, you can make your own simple and natural all purpose cleaner.
homemade-cleaner Bleach and ammonia are gone, say hi to essential oils and hydrogen peroxide. Seems almost too easy, doesn’t it? But it works and it works well. The added bonus? It smells better than the chemicals.
Here are the instructions:
Take a simple new spray bottle, clear or opaque, and mix together ½ tsp each of lavender and lemon essential oils, 1/8 tsp peppermint essential oil and 16 oz. of hydrogen peroxide. Shake gently to mix and spray away. For best results, wait two minutes after spraying onto the surface you are cleaning.  Hydrogen peroxide acts to kill mildew, mold, bacteria and fungus. It can be used quite effectively on its own to disinfect surfaces, including glass mirrors, windows, countertops and even your stainless steel surfaces. The essential oils, while smelling good, can also be great as an antibacterial, antifungal and antiseptic.
Here is another recipe for a natural all purpose cleaner.
Liquid Castile soap.11 ounces -This is the base of your soap. You could also use palm oil. It is plant oil, biodegradable and earth-friendly.

Lye. 4 ounces (130 grams)- Another very important ingredient is lye. Lye is made from sodium hydroxide(NaOH) for bar soaps and potassium hydroxide(KOH) for liquid soaps. Soap cannot be made without it.

Essential Oils: 6 ounces (180 grams) - Choose the one you like the most.
Castor oil – It is used for added lather and moisturizing.
Water 12 ounces (350grams)- Water is a very important ingredient but make sure the water is distilled. Distilled water eliminates any contaminants or high amounts of minerals your water might contain. 

Borax 6 ounces- Neutralizes acidity by lowering the PH in the lye. It is natural and extracted from the earth. It’s also known to be a disinfectant and deodorizer.

This makes one pound of soap.
1. Put the water in a jug preferably a plastic one.
2. Slowly add the lye to the water and stir until the lye is totally dissolved.
3. Put the mixture of lye/water in a safe place to cool. Leave it for approximately 1 hour
4. Heat your castor oil, castile oil until its completely melted.
5. Once the oils and lye have cooled, slowly pour your lye/water solution into your oils.
6. Once your oils are well blended with the lye water, it’s time to add your borax, fragrance and other additives.
7. Stir all the ingredients into your saucepan until it thickens.
8. Cover your soap and leave for 48 hours so that the lye mixture can undergo saponification. This is the process whereby chemical reactions take place to make the actual soap.

Congratulations! You have made your first natural all-purpose cleaner soap!

Using an all-natural cleaner reduces the amount of toxic cleaners that are sold today and makes your house and the people in it, much happier and healthier for not having to breathe in nasty fumes.

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