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Homemade cleaning supplies
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Rainey



Joined: 29 Sep 2004
Posts: 2498
Location: Los Angeles, California, USA

PostPosted: Tue Nov 30, 2004 5:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

monkey wrote:
i had a friend who had a very fuzzy chow who used to love being hoovered on a regular basis - daily i believe. there was never any dog hair in the house and the dog was supernaturally fluffy.


I had such a cat once. A long-haired cat who, blessedly, really enjoyed it. I also had one who played fetch with one particular shower curtain ring. Alas! These things seem to be intrinsic and not something you can choose/inflict/train. ::sigh::

David, that's quite a word picture of your sunroom windows! Shocked Smile
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Tue Nov 30, 2004 6:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I got out the vacume cleaner and Barney took off. It took me quite a while to get him out from under the bed.
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"It's watery....and yet there's a smack of ham."

"It's hot ham water."
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Lisa



Joined: 10 Feb 2005
Posts: 20
Location: New York City, USA

PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2005 7:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thought I'd resurrect this thread as the topic is dear to me and there are fantastic ideas on it! I agree that baking soda and vinegar are two magic staples!

A few ideas:

I second the mention of using newspaper when cleaning mirrors or inside windows. Spray with whatever solution you use, and then wipe with crumpled newspaper. Leaves no streaks, and no fuzzies like paper towels can do.

The baking soda trick does wonders for wine glasses left with a red rim somewhere inside. Shake a little baking soda in the glass, add warm water, and let sit overnight. Wow! If there's quite a lot of wine the baking soda will turn it gray -- this happened with my lips one night as well, which startled me, until I remembered I'd been drinking red wine and my toothpaste has baking soda in it! Baking soda and warm water also works well for coffee and tea stains inside mugs. This is a recent discovery and I've cleaned some coffee cups I thought were just destined for a life of looking loveworn.

Vinegar and water is also great for linoleum floors ... dunno about wood or stone.

A tiny bit of bleach in a cup or two of hot water makes an excellent solution for cleaning mildew from the grout between shower/bath tiles. Use an old toothbrush (or one you won't stick in your mouth again, at any rate!) -- dip in the solution -- scrub along the mildew. Wait a couple minutes.

Red stains (wine, blood, tomato) come out of light and dark fabrics quite well if you pour a little hydrogen peroxide on the stain as soon as possible and wait a couple minutes. I do this often and it doesn't seem to bleach the fabric at all.

Remember that for lots of basic washing up (of dishes), cold water will clean as well as hot. It's hard to do in the winter though!

I've heard of some good homemade laundry detergent ideas but haven't ever tried any -- has anyone had success with any? I've also heard of but never tried adding water to a pan with stuff stuck on the bottom and bringing it to a boil before trying to scrub -- has anyone ever done this?
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swan



Joined: 23 Nov 2004
Posts: 450
Location: a Dutchie in HongKong

PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2005 1:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Lisa, yes, it works! When stuff is stuck onto the bottom of your pan, especially when it's burnt (I do have my moments...) and it won't come off doing normal dishes: Bring water in it to the boil either with plenty of salt, or, what works even quicker, with a little powder detergent for washing clothes( somehow the special stuff for fine linnens or for hand-wash (you call it like that in english?) works the best) ans the stuff will come off your pan within minutes.
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Rainey



Joined: 29 Sep 2004
Posts: 2498
Location: Los Angeles, California, USA

PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2005 6:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lisa wrote:
I've also heard of but never tried adding water to a pan with stuff stuck on the bottom and bringing it to a boil before trying to scrub -- has anyone ever done this?


Oh yes indeed! That was my m-i-law's trick. She did it with baking soda in the water. I'm not sure if it adds an abrasive or if it's just a magic feather but I still do it her way.

It will work off the most vile messes that are left when I leave a pan on the stove after all the liquid's evaporated away. Shocked

It's not always momentary for me. Sometimes, after the most vile messes, I have to pour off the water that's been boiling for 30 min. or so and add fresh water and baking powder. But it inevitably does the job!
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David



Joined: 30 Sep 2004
Posts: 1855
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2005 7:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'll vouch for the booling salt water too,have used it many times to get burnt chile off the bottom of the pot (you'd think I'd learn).
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Sat Mar 05, 2005 11:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use it too. When I was a kid my dad taught me that short cut. Today all my pots are scratch free!
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"It's watery....and yet there's a smack of ham."

"It's hot ham water."
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Lisa



Joined: 10 Feb 2005
Posts: 20
Location: New York City, USA

PostPosted: Sun Mar 06, 2005 6:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gosh, these affirmations make me smile so much! I like to think of all of us at about 7 years old, standing on a chair pulled up to the stove in the kitchen, waiting waiting waiting for the salty water to boil. In my mind we're all in the kitchen of my childhood, which had this wonderful wallpaper with wicker trellises and potted pathos plants. We're all wearing pajamas like my grandma made me, white with big purple and pink polka dots, freshly bathed, hair parted down the middle and flat to our heads because it's still wet.

Loosely still on topic: it was my job as a wee kid to clean the bathrooms. (It was my brother's job to vacuum. I always thought I got the better deal. He always thought he did.) I learned the newspaper trick back then, at about 10 or 11, and still use it (although today, living on my own, I'm not quite as diligent or regular about it!).

Many, many, many thanks to everyone on these boards who makes me so happy with all their knowledge and stories and sweetness!
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swan



Joined: 23 Nov 2004
Posts: 450
Location: a Dutchie in HongKong

PostPosted: Sun Mar 06, 2005 9:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
We're all wearing pajamas like my grandma made me, white with big purple and pink polka dots


I SO want PJ's like that!!!! Very Happy

(who said I have to be a grown-up now that I'm 35...? )
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swan



Joined: 23 Nov 2004
Posts: 450
Location: a Dutchie in HongKong

PostPosted: Wed Mar 09, 2005 10:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm happy we were talking about it. It is one of those days. Amazing what potatoes can do to a pan.....the salt-trick worked'...again... Smile
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Debbie



Joined: 21 Feb 2005
Posts: 861
Location: Paris

PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2005 8:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good old bi carb soda.... can't beat it for cleaning. If you have a really stubborn stain a lemon cut in half and dipped in bicarb makes a non scratch abrasive. It also works with a lemon dipped in salt. For drains and battubs etc, I always use a tablespoon (or so) of bi carb tipped down the hole and then pour a cup of white vinegar down. It fizzes like crazy, but clears all the soap scum and keeps your pipes clear. The cheaper and nastier the vinegar the better it seems to work too.... When I was in the army we used to put our brass uniform trims into a glass of coca cola over night to clean. Next morning we just gave them a quick rinse and wiped dry with a lint free cloth. Works well for glass, crystal, stainless steel, etc. Don't use on silver or bonethough as it will damage the surface.

Baby wipes are fabulous. I use them for wiping down the bathroom sink and vanity unit, and for getting stains out of clothes (such as foundation and lipstick) providing the material is one whch can be washed... don't use on silk!... if you don't want to try that a paste made of lemon juice and bicarb and applied very thickly and left in the sun for a while will lighten stains. Let the paste dry and brush off. Repeat if necessary. It also works on delicate fabrics using water and bicarb.

White vinegar in the wash when doing towels and sheets stops them getting pills (those horrid little balls of fluff) and when new will take the fabric dressing off the material and make them soft and the towels also absorbant. A few drops of lavender essential oil will get rid of the vinegar smell from the washing if you put it in the rinse water.
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If you cannot feel your arteries hardening, eat more cheese. If you can, drink more red wine. Diet is just "die" with a "t" on the end. Exercise is walking into the kitchen.
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sparrowgrass



Joined: 05 Apr 2005
Posts: 2

PostPosted: Tue Apr 05, 2005 3:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Martha Stewart's recipe for window cleaning solution: one gallon hot water, 2 cups white vinegar, 1 cup clear ammonia (not the sudsing kind) and 1 heaping tablespoon corn starch. Shake it up, apply with a sponge and squeegee off. Polish with newspapers.

I think the cornstarch acts as a mild abrasive. I had a house where the oil furnace had blown black greasy smoke on windows and walls. This cleaning solution worked when everything else left greasy streaks.
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simona



Joined: 11 Mar 2005
Posts: 696
Location: israel

PostPosted: Tue Apr 05, 2005 7:51 pm    Post subject: cleaning plastic containers Reply with quote

David, all five are schnauzers? Miniature?
My grandson drams of having one .
How did the topic shift from cleaning plastic containers of tomato stains to dogs? That was really funny..Maybe because cleaning containers is no fun at all ?
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David



Joined: 30 Sep 2004
Posts: 1855
Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Tue Apr 05, 2005 10:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi simona, it's 4 miniature schnauzers, 1 border collie and today we are getting a Llasa Apso cross! Everyone should have at least one miniature schnauzer. Not an hour goes by without laughter or loving in our house!
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elemenoh



Joined: 10 May 2005
Posts: 17
Location: Scotland/New Jersey/Connecticut/Massachusetts

PostPosted: Fri May 13, 2005 10:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Came across this article a few weeks back. I think most of the cleaning solutions they point out have been brought up here already, but their comparisions (effectiveness and cost) to store-bought cleaners are interesting.

David, I so want a miniature schnauzer. I have the sheddingest dog in. the. world. (She's a yellow lab.) I've been away from the dog and out of the country, even, for about 4 months now, and I am still finding dog hair in my stuff.
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