Homemade stuff is a bit of a hobby of mine but this one came about from one
month where the budget was really tight and we ran out of not just our regular dishwasher detergent but our liquid dish soap too! So I didnt even have the option to handwash our dishes! HOLY CRAP! So I started looking around on the internet for a homemade recipe. If you already make your own laundry detergent you may already have some of these ingredients on hand.

Ingredients:
1 cup Washing Soda
1 cup Kosher Salt
1/2 cup (or more) Citric Acid
White Vinegar or Lemon Juice

Mix dry ingredients in a plastic tub and allow to sit on the counter, stirring every couple hours. The sit and sitr process allows the citric acid to clump and then be broken up to prevent massive clumps. This can also be prevented by adding a teaspoon of dry white rice to the
detergent. If you have hard water you may need to add more citric acid, you will know if this is the case if your glassware comes out with a white film on it. 

This white film may take a few washes to come off completely. If you have
excessive film build up or do not wish to deal with the citric acid clumping in
the detergent you can add the acid to each load to determine what ratio is best to prevent film. This film is not harmful.

The white vinegar or lemon juice is to be used in place of the drying/rinse agent. 

Add 1tbls to each load in the regular detergent cup and wash as usual.

I have also seen recipes that include 20 Mule Team Borax but as I am currently out of Borax I will have to wait to experiement with this. I will post an update as soon as I am able.

The most expensive ingredient will be the citric acid, so be sure to shop around online for it to find a decent price. I found mine on eBay for a little over $3/lb with $5 in shipping fees. Citric Acid can also be used in canning, candy making, cooking, homemade tooth powders to create a foaming action for cleaning between the teeth, and can even be used as a supplement to improve your body's ability to absorb other
vitamins.

So experiement and enjoy!
 
 
As a parent you have to deal with a sick family on a fairly regular basis. Many of the illnesses you will encounter are transmitted through the air so it can be really quite difficult to prevent them from spreading. You try to keep everything sprayed down with Lysol and you wipe down handles and other objects that get touched a lot. You do lots of laundry and pump your kids full of medicines to try to help them get better but try as you might your family falls ill one by one and some even get sick a second time. So what can you do that may actually stop the illness from spreading?

Lysol and Your Air Filter
When your family starts getting sick with an airborne illness be sure to check your air filter. If your family has recently gotten sick with something airborne your air filter could be holding onto pathogens that can get recycled into the air when the AC kicks on. Replace the filter if its old and needs to be replaced anyway, or if its rather new, spray it down with Lysol or some other disinfecting spray. If possible allow it to dry in the sun then spray it down again before you replace it in your air system. If you're putting in a new filter at the beginning of an illness outbreak you should still Lysol it before putting it in. Check the filter every couple days and maybe spray it again if it feels dry. The spray will stay in the filter and kill bacteria and viruses as they pass through the filter, helping to cut down on the transmission of illness through the air. HEPA filters are also great for helping to cut down on airborne pathogens with or without lysoling the filter.

Masks
Masks are annoying, and can make it difficult to breathe but are actually, not surprisingly, a great way to help cut down on the spread of illness. You can either have the sick person wear it or wear one yourself when attending to the sick individual. Be sure to use a new mask each day, or when the mask you've been using becomes significantly damp. A damp mask is less effective at protecting you from airborne illness.

Sick Room
During periods of illness try to keep the sick family members away from the healthy ones. Whenever possible, keep the sick people in the same room to help cut down on cleaning after people start feeling better.

Toy Room
If you're dealing with sick children you know its almost impossible to keep them confined to one room. They will almost always end up wanting to play, and if those toys don't get cleaned occasionally they can be what keeps your family getting sick over and over again. So be sure to spray or wipe down your child's toys and toy room to help cut down on illness. Also, if your child still sleeps in a crib you may want to wipe that down too. If your child likes to rub their face on the edge of their bed, or bite it they can definitely end up getting themselves sick again.
 
 
I LOVE that super ridiculously expensive lavender linen spray you can buy at Pottery Barn but I HATE the price. Its a lavender scented spray that you can use to dampen clothes while ironing, and to freshen up linens that tend to smell a little musty after having been in storage for a while. And with one easy step you can also turn this spray into a light starch ironing spray.

So here is the basic recipe:

16 or 32 oz. spray bottle
2 tbsp. 100 proof vodka or rubbing alcohol
Your choice of two oils, such as jasmine, bergamot, lavender, etc.
Distilled water
 
Instructions:
  1. Mix the 2 tbsp. of alcohol and your choice of these oils in the bottle as follows:
    - 1 teaspoon jasmine oil and ½ teaspoon bergamot oil
    - 1 teaspoon lavender oil and ½ teaspoon sandalwood oil
    - 1 teaspoon vanilla oil and 2 drops ginger oil
  2. Then, add distilled water to the bottle until it is almost full.
  3. Screw on the cap and shake the bottle to disperse the oils evenly throughout.
  4. Shake lightly before each use.


You can use pretty much whatever essential oils you like. Lemon can also be used but for this I would recommend using lemon oil rather than juice. Lemon juice, when heated, tends to burn or turn brown. This can ruin fabrics. This can also be used in place of Febreeze or other fabric freshening sprays.

To make this a starch spray add 1 tspn for every 16 oz of water and use in a spray bottle. The liquid will be milky in color. Be sure to shake it up before each use as the corn starch may settle. If the spray makes your clothing too stiff try dumping a little out and add more water. If you'd like the fabric to be more stiff, simply add more starch to the water.
 
 

Ok, so first off I need to say a few things about the disinfecting craze. A lot of people are going nuts over making sure that everthing has been wiped down with some sort of sanitizing agent because germs are everywhere and every one of them can kill you... this is totally bogus. If this were the case then people would be dying left and right, and those of us who were unfortunate enough to survive would constantly be sick and on the verge of death.

As this is not the case it is then safe to assume that not all germs are deadly and in fact, it is this compulsive need to make sure everything is 'clean' is what is leading to super viruses and all that stuff that really CAN kill you. 

Anyway, that being said, disinfectants do have their place and are necessary for preventing the spread of certain illnesses like colds, flus, and highly contagious ailments such as pink eye. But with many people developing eczema and other skin sensitivity issues, one in particular being multiple chemical sensitivity which results for the over use of chemical cleaners in the home, many people are looking for safer, more natural, less irritating ways to clean. Here is a recipe for one such cleaner:

Homemade Disinfectant
20 drops Tea Tree Oil
20 drops Lavender Oil
10 drops Lemon Oil
1 qt Water

Mix and pour into a spray bottle.

Recipe courtesy of http://www.mnn.com/your-home/at-home/stories/make-your-own-disinfectant-spray

Many of the oils included in this recipe have anti-biotic, anti-fungal, and anti-viral properties as well as smelling great. As they are derived from natural sources they are also, generally, hypo-allergenic and totally safe to use on things your infant touches, or on surfaces used to prepare food. This spray does not have to be wiped off with water before the surface can be used. 

Vinegar as an Anti-Microbial
Another, more simple recipe is a 1:5 dilution of vinegar in water. This means that for every 1 part vinegar you should use 5 parts water, whether youre measuring in teaspoons, cups or gallons. Vinegar has been proven to be just as effective as bleach in that it kills '99 percent of bacteria, 82 percent of mold, and 80 percent of germs (viruses).' Read more: http://www.care2.com/greenliving/vinegar-kills-bacteria-mold-germs.html#ixzz1lzkbQBaR 

This 1:5 dilution is best for cleaning things that will be used to prepare food or will regularly come in contact with the skin. For cleaning things like the toilet or shower it is recommended that you use straight vinegar. If the smell of vinegar is not appealing to you then I recommend adding a few drops of the above mentioned essential oils to help mask the smell. It is unnecessary to wear a mask or work in a well ventilated area when using a vinegar solution, though I would still recommend cracking a window or turning on the fan to keep the smell from becoming over powering. Its not going to hurt your lungs but its not the greatest smell in the world. The smell of vinegar dissipates much faster than the smell of bleach and is less corrosive. Its also not going to damage colored fabrics or surfaces.
 
 
In the link below there are a number of other window cleaner recipes. I listed the two that looked the best and the easiest to make. Try a few to find out which one you like best and feel free to leave your reviews in a comment at the end of this article. We look forward to hearing about your experience!

Lemon Fresh Window Cleaner
3 TBS lemon juice (freshly squeezed)2 cups club soda (you can use water too or a mix of water and club soda but I prefer 100% club soda) 1 tsp cornstarch 
Pour everything into a spray bottle then shake well before using.


Recipe courtesy of http://tipnut.com/more-homemade-window-cleaner-recipes-to-try/

I'm not sure what the corn starch does for the recipe but I'm planning to give it a shot to see how it works. The person who wrote the website said that of all the recipes she has seen this is the one she likes the most.


White Vinegar Window Cleaner
1/2 cup white vinegar
1 gallon warm water 

Mix and use with spray bottle.


Tips for Streak Free Windows:
  1. Make sure that whatever cloth you are using to clean the glass is clean, was washed without fabric softeners, and is lint free. If the cloth is not entirely clean, or was washed with fabric softeners, then it will leave streaks on the glass. If it is not lint free then it will leave little fibers all over the glass.
  2. Use Newspaper to clean your glass and windows. Im not sure what it is about newspaper but I have tried this and know it to be true. Avoid colored adds or glossy paper though, these can leave behind streaks and rainbows.
  3. Wash one side of the window in an up and down pattern and the other in a side to side pattern. This makes it easier to identify which side of the glass is streaked.
  4. Do not clean windows that are hot or in direct sunlight. The cleaner will dry too quickly, leaving streaks or water spots. Wait till the widow is cool or out of direct sunlight before cleaning.
 
 

This recipe was given to me by my friend Jessica Voge. She uses this herself and says its really cheap, works just as well as any other laundry soap, and smells great. According to the website listed below this soap is also compatible with high efficiency washers too. I will be trying this out soon and will post my person review after I do. It might cost you more to buy the ingredients than it would to buy laundry soap but it will last you quite a lot longer since you'll have enough to make multiple batches. The only differences between this and the store bought stuff is water.
http://www.diynatural.com/simple-easy-fast-effective-jabs-homemade-laundry-detergent/  


Anyway, here is the recipe:
SIMPLE INGREDIENTSI purchased all these ingredients at my local grocery store:
All items were found in the laundry isle.


  1. Grate soap with fine grade cheese grater.
  2. Add 1 cup Borax.
  3. Add 1 cup Washing Soda.
  4. Stir till throughly combined, should look like regular powdered laundry detergent.
  5. Use 1 tblspn of detergent per load. 1-2 for heavily soiled loads.