Life Day By Day

Frugal Frieda and cleaning the home

It is the last day of the month today and I have not written my “Frugal Frieda” post for the month of March. I have had computer problems which have not made it easy to be inspired and then sit and write. But today is my last chance and the information for this month is related to “cleaning the home”. It is about saving money through making and using cheaper cleaning products at home.

Generally, I like to keep my home clean. Note the word “generally” – this means there are times when I can lapse and my cleaning jobs are overdue. To make life easier for me I am always looking for that “miracle” cleaner. A product that will clean the shower, toilet, and kitchen, yes all of those in one easy spray and wipe. As I have never found the miracle cleaner I succumb to using bleach or another product that contains abrasives and phosphates which is not good for me or the environment as it harms our waterways.

The “blue loo” option to keep the toilet clean and smelling fresh contains sodium hydrogen sulphate. It is an easy option but not a good option. Do we know what we are doing to our respiratory systems by inhaling all these chemicals? A couple of years ago I had a respiratory problem (out of the blue) and my doctor asked if I had any exposure to chemicals! My mind wandered to cleaning products in the home such as the noxious cleaner I was using to keep the shower screens and walls sparkling clean! We have to be careful with these products also a combination of chemicals can cause more harm than good. Did you know that if you use a mix of bleach and a toilet cleaning product noxious chlorine bleach vapours can occur? As you can see cleaning the home has its hazards and is why some people find cleaning to be dangerous as well as a chore, one that is best to be avoided! But have no fear – Frugal Frieda comes to the rescue so we can get rid of all those chemicals.

The answer is in two well known household products: vinegar and bi-carbonate of soda. Vinegar is a disinfectant and it is cheap and readily found on any supermarket shelf. There are two ways we can use vinegar as a cleaner: 1) place one part vinegar and one part water in a spray bottle; 2) for difficult to clean areas make a paste with bi-carbonate soda and undiluted vinegar. If needed use a scrubbing brush or even an old toothbrush. The secret according to “Frugal Frieda” is to clean more frequently and you won’t need to scrub as hard!

Cleaning with a mix of vinegar and water will have your home smelling sweet as a rose
Clean your home with a mix of vinegar and water and it will smell almost as sweet as a rose

The vinegar and water spray bottle can be used for cleaning the toilet inside and outside; as well as the bath, basins, tiles, mirrors, refrigerator and kitchen bench tops. There is more that can be done with the ingredients of vinegar and essential oils for woodwork. Over the next few months I am sure Frugal Frieda will come up with some other cleaning ideas that are simple, inexpensive, efficient and effective.

It is about time that I used less toxic substances in the home. Over the next few months I will experiment with Frugal Frieda’s vinegar and water solution – let’s call it VW. In a couple of months I will let you know how I go with my VW. Perhaps you too can make up a bottle of VW and join me in motoring throughout your home keeping it clean, germ free and sparkling. The bonus for all of us is that we will have more money left at the end of the fortnight, rather than more fortnight after the end of the money! I will put my extra money towards a holiday and when I arrive home I will walk into a clean and healthy home.

Tip for March: Throw out all those chemical cleaners and look for simple, cheaper and healthier options. Start with a VW (one part vinegar and one part water in a spray bottle). Find a clean cloth and motor around the house with your spray bottle. Not only is VW a great cleaner and good for the environment it is also a disinfectant and will get rid of mildew along the way.

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