DIY Dish Soap

Photo courtesy of Bright Nest
Photo courtesy of Bright Nest

Washing dishes is one of my least favorite chores around the house (besides folding laundry!). With kids, I’m pretty sure the dirty dishes double…maybe triple. Even as a toddler, my girl goes through way too many cups and bowls to count. I sometimes think we have a dirty dish troll who steals and hides the dirty dishes so that I have to use a new, clean one.

Anyone else feel that way!?

With tons of dishes, we go through dish soap faster than I’d like. That stuff can get expensive! I’m partly to blame because I’m a sucker for my favorite scents which, of course, always end up being the more expensive ones. Go figure! 

I found an awesome DIY Dish Soap from Hello Natural. Not crazy difficult, and, the ingredients list isn’t too long either. If you’re looking for a great homemade dish soap, give this one a try!

Let me know what you think! :)

DIY Grease Fighting Lavender Dish Soap
An all-natural, grime-fighting dish soap!
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Ingredients
  1. 2 cups water
  2. ¼ cup all natural soap flakes or grated soap
  3. ¼ cup castile soap
  4. 2 teaspoons super washing soda
  5. 1 teaspoon non-GMO vegetable glycerin
  6. 30-40 drops lavender essential oil
Instructions
  1. Bring the water to a boil in a saucepan.
  2. Add the soap flakes and stir to dissolve.
  3. Add the castile soap, washing soda, glycerin, and essential oil.
  4. Stir well, making sure everything is dissolved.
  5. Carefully pour into a bottle with a spout or pump.
  6. It needs to set for about 24 hours.
Notes
  1. From Hello Natural: If it's too thick, add a little more water. Different factors can affect the thickness of the soap - the water you use (is it filtered or tap), the brand of soap flakes or grated soap, etc. If you want a thicker soap, pour the soap back into the pan and warm it back up. Add a little more washing soda.
Adapted from Mommypotamus
Adapted from Mommypotamus
http://crunchyontheweekend.com/
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DIY Room Spray

Photo courtesy of Absolute China Tours Blog
Photo courtesy of Absolute China Tours Blog

Sometimes our house can get a little stale smelling, especially during the colder months when the house is all closed up, all the time! I love using candles, but, with my rambunctious toddler running around, using them safely isn’t always doable! 

Room sprays are a great alternative when your house needs a little pick-me-up during the day! There are tons of air fresheners that you can buy, but, you can make a whole stash of your own instead (without funky chemicals and over-the-top prices).

Hello Natural has some simple and amazing room spray recipes with minimal ingredients that you can find almost anywhere! 

Try these combinations for your own stash of room sprays:

 Relax & Rest: Lavender and Vanilla
Energize & Revitalize: Orange and Grapefruit/Orange and Lemon/Grapefruit and Lemon
Focus & Center: Peppermint and Rosemary
Bathroom Refresher: Cinnamon, Clove, and Tea Tree

DIY Room Spray
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Ingredients
  1. 1 tablespoon vodka
  2. 6 tablespoons filtered water
  3. 10-40 drops of essential oils (peppermint, jasmine, citrus, lavender, etc)
Instructions
  1. Place the alcohol into a small spray bottle.
  2. Add the desired drops of essential oils.
  3. Shake well and add the water.
  4. Shake again and spritz whenever you need a little pick-me-up.
Adapted from Hello Natural
Adapted from Hello Natural
http://crunchyontheweekend.com/

“Renovation on the Cheap” Series- Post #3

We have been BUSY BEES, everyone. Some days, it seems we are TOO busy. Ha, typical right? I don’t think we ever have enough time in the day to do everything we want and need to do!

oh-you-want-to-remodel-the-house-great-i-have-it-all-designed-on-pinterest-already-8f038

My husband ran into some car trouble and was without his car for a little over a week and a half. He was taking my car to work so I was home and getting stir crazy with our little one! Tonight, he FINALLY got the problem fixed and we are back to having two running cars- WOO HOO!

The car was definitely interfering with our renovation progress. However, we are truckin’ along on the downstairs and making some great progress! This week, my dad and husband picked up the drywall and insulation and unloaded it. My dad finished up some wiring, plumbing work, and insulation on Saturday while my husband battled his car all morning and afternoon. Today, my husband took a break and the drywall hanging started this morning! The guys made some great progress while my mama played maid and cleaned up drywall dust after them :) If you don’t have a shop vac for your home reno projects, GET ONE. Rent one. Borrow one. Buy one. You won’t regret it.

We’ll be working on the drywall the rest of the week and we’re hoping to be done with that step by this weekend. Then comes taping, plastering, texturing, and painting! Ahhh…painting, the funnest thing of all…*enter sarcasm*. :)

We’ve also got a lot of painting to do in the rest of the house (touch-ups, painting another layer in the bathroom upstairs, etc.). We’re enlisting the expert painting skills of my Gram during that phase! Thanks, Gram!

If you want to check out the photos so far, see the slideshow below! I’ve been trying REALLY hard to keep up with the photo taking, but, some days our insanely busy toddler distracts me from my photo taking duties.

Keep checking back for more updates and photos! We’re so excited that you’re following our journey!

 

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DIY Bathroom Cleaning Wipes

We all like clean bathrooms, right!? As a parent with a toddler and a husband who is a mechanic, I feel like my bathroom is CONSTANTLY dirty, but, I don’t have the time to deep clean every other day to fight the grime and dirt!

If you want an incredibly easy way to keep your bathroom clean on a daily basis without forking over a ton of money on pricey, chemical- laden cleaning wipes, this is it. Minimal ingredients, minimal time, and easy? I’ll take it! Plus, they’re so easy, you really can’t mess them up. No Pinterest fails here :)

Try them out and let us know what you think! Thanks to our wonderful guest blogger from House Cleaners London, for giving us this awesome recipe!


DIY Reusable Bathroom Cleaning Wipes
Edna J. Thomson

Buying cleaning wipes all the time will cost you a fortune. You possibly think that purchasing one pack every other day is nothing, but, once you calculate how much you spend for this product every month, you will be surprised for sure! There is another problem with the cleaning wipes offered in the stores, and, that’s the dangerous ingredients they contain. It’s enough to look at the label to see just how harmful they actually are. There is no need to endanger your health and the health of the other members of your family any more. Instead, we can offer you a safer and cheaper alternative.

DIY reusable cleaning wipes are easy to make and also more effective than the regular ones. There is no need to spend a lot of money every month for packs of dangerous cleaning wipes when you can simply prepare your own special product for general house cleaning. You will need a couple of simple and cheap ingredients, as well as a little free time. We can promise you, however, that once you try this amazing homemade product, you will permanently stop using store-bought wipes.

Below you will find a useful recipe for bathroom cleaning wipes that will make the disinfection of this part of your home much easier.

Courtesy of Wikimedia
Courtesy of Wikimedia

Ingredients
The first thing you have to do is to gather all ingredients you will need for the preparation of your homemade bathroom cleaning wipes. You can make a list in advance, so that you don’t have to go to the shop again.

What you’ll need is:

White vinegar

Essential oil of your choosing

Water

Large container or big jar with lid

Pieces of cloth (the best part is that you can use some of your old t-shirts, sheets or other things to make the cloths- just make sure that all pieces have the same size)

Preparing the special blend
The next step is to mix together the ingredients, so that you can make a special cleaning solution. You can mix 1/2 cup of white vinegar with several drops of essential oil and water in some kind of vessel. If you are using a jar, you will have to arrange the pieces of cloth in the jar first and then add the special blend until the jar is almost full.

Placing the wipes in the clean container
In case you have a container instead of jar, you will have to soak each piece of cloth in the solution and then place it in the empty container until it becomes full. You can arrange your new bathroom cleaning wipes any way you like. You also have to make sure that the lid of the container closes well.

Cleaning and Maintenance
You can use your homemade wipes for the disinfection of pretty much everything. Whenever you want to remove old stains from toothpaste, shampoo or something else from the mirror or another part of your bathroom, you will have a reliable and effective cleaning product. When you finish with the cleaning, all you have to do is wash the pieces cloth and you can use them again.

Maintaining and cleaning your home, and more precisely your bathroom, can be a challenge sometimes. With the right cleaning supplies, however, this task will be easier than ever. The DIY bathroom cleaning wipes will remove any grime, especially different kinds of stains. If you want to make sure that this part of your property is also free from mold, you can add a couple drops of tea tree oil to the special blend for the wipes. Then, you can clean the area around the toilet, as well as all corners in your bathroom.

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“Renovation on the Cheap” Series- Post #1

If you missed the story about our renovation, check out our first post below for the details!

 Household Renovation on the Cheap!


To kick off our first series post, we’re going to fill you in on the projects we are working on and planning on doing before listing our house on the market.

Our biggest tip so far is find a realtor you can TRUST and make sure you feel that they have YOUR best interest at heart. We love our realtor and she is not only an established and accomplished realtor, but, one of the most knowledgeable people I have met in regards to the real estate market in general! If you are in Northern Colorado and need a wonderful realtor, look up Jenny Kindsfather with Coldwell Banker and you will not be disappointed!

Now, the reason I started with the realtor point is for this reason:

Before you go all crazy with upgrades and remodeling your home to sell it, have your realtor come by and assess your property. Knowledgeable realtors know the market and will know what comparable homes are selling for along with what features they have. You, of course, want to make your home stand out among the rest, but, you don’t want to go overboard with upgrades and overprice your home. This will most likely turn into a situation of having to reduce your sale price and lose out on lots of money that you put into your home. You do not want to upgrade your home to the point of it being “too nice” for the area and not selling or becoming “stale” on the market.

Before we started on our bigger wishlist projects, we contacted our realtor and she pulled comps before even coming by our home. When she came over later in the week, she had already familiarized herself with other homes nearby that were for sale or had sold recently. She gave us solid input about our project list and what upgrades she felt were necessary and which ones she thought were unnecessary.

So, first rule of thumb- FIND A GREAT REALTOR WHO KNOWS WHAT THEY’RE DOING (even better if you get some solid recommendations from people you trust).


Now, onto our projects and timeline…

  1. Complete the lower level of our tri-level home which will include adding:
    • 2nd bathroom
    • Large 3rd bedroom or family room
      • Walk-in closet
    • Office/den space
      • Small closet
    • Enclosed laundry room
    • Storage closet
    • Plus, the givens such as painting and adding flooring
  2. Landscaping in front yard and backyard
    • Cut down a dying tree in the backyard
  3. Reinforce side fence
  4. Painting and adding shutters to the front of the house
  5. Possibly repainting the house and front door- we aren’t decided on this since our realtor didn’t feel it was necessary, but, we feel the house needs it!
  6. Touching up paint/filling holes on walls
  7. Replacing a piece of trim in the bathroom
  8. Swap out any fixtures that we are planning on taking with us to our next home

Ready for our timeline!?

You may think we are insane (maybe we are!), but, we are planning to start the renovation downstairs at the end of this month and have it completed by the first week of August (give or take a couple days).

Yep. Reading that definitely makes us look insane when we have a ridiculous list of things to do while balancing work and a rambunctious toddler who chooses not to nap lately. Oh. my. goodness.

So there you have it. A quick look into the projects we will be completing before listing our home and jumping into the madness of home showings while trying to keep a routine with your dog and toddler.


Next week, we’ll fill you in on how we are keeping the cost of these projects low, while some are even FREE. If you’re thinking of jumping in the same boat as us, you’ll want to check it out!

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