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PostPosted: Mon Sep 22, 2003 6:54 pm 
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Product >> Less Toxic Option

Ammonia-Based Cleaners >> White Vinegar, lemon juice
Bleach Cleaners >> Baking Soda, Borax, Hydrogen Peroxide
Drain Opener >> Biological treatments, plunger, plumber's snake
Oven Cleaner >> Catch drips with foil. Baking soda & water
Paints, Stains, Finishes >> Use water based products & milk washes
Paint Thinner >> Add water to water based paints.
Pesticides >> Remove food source, use traps, biological control
Motor Oil >> Synthetic Motor Oil

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 12, 2004 4:07 pm 
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Mrs. Meyers cleaning products are pricey, but sure make cleaning much more enjoyable! My favorite is lavender. Scent is from essential oils, not the harmful synthetic type of fragrance. They do a great job, too! Available at Redenta's, Whole Foods, and other fine stores!

No, I do not work for this company, I just like their products! :D

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 12, 2004 7:35 pm 
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Location: Lavon,Texas
Thanks Nadine for all the great tips.

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 13, 2004 4:32 pm 
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Hey Nadine,

Thanks for the tips! On the bleach alternative I am guessing you combine all 3 ingredients?

I like the Meyers products too, I use the lavendar glass cleaner. I also us the seventh generation products. The kitchen & bathroom cleaners have a nice orange smell.

I have a question about floors. What do use for:
hardwoods?
bathroom tile?
kithen linolium?

Thanks! Keep those tips coming!


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 14, 2004 9:27 am 
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Location: Saginaw (NW Fort Worth), Texas
I have to second the vote on the Seventh Generation line of cleaners. I switched to their laundry soap and my husbands and childrens sensitive skin are so much the better for it. Our clothes are also softern than when we used Tide. AND!! Albertsons has it on sale 2 large bottles for $10. We also like the citrus Shower and Tub cleaner.

Take care,
Christina


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 14, 2004 11:26 am 
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Quote:
I have a question about floors. What do use for:
hardwoods?
bathroom tile?
kithen linolium?


For tile and linolium, I'd used orange oil (TKO). It's not cheap, but it's so concentrated that it's a good deal in the end. For our hardwood floors, I generally just sweep/vacuum well and then do a light mopping with plain water -- just enough to get it damp and pick up dirt. Every so often, I'll add a little TKO, very diluted.

You can get a lot of household stuff (including Seventh Generation) online at Kokopelli's green market - http://www.kokogm.com/ Their bulk buys are good deals -- I got together with several other families and split a large order, which saved a lot on s/h.

Or try http://www.cosmeticswithoutsynthetics.com -- their main focus is body care and cosmetics (and they're the best I've found), but they have a few cleaners, and their glass cleaner is great!

Judith


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2004 6:59 pm 
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It looks like this thread was resurrected. That's a good thing!

As Judith mentioned, I use Orange TKO alot around the house. You can get past the initial sticker shock when you realize just how far you can dilute it down and have it remain effective.

For cleaning wood paneling I use Murphy's Oil Soap. The labeling says it is "Pure Vegetable". It is biodegradeable and phospate free. I also use this as an initial soak for my auto detailing foam pads.

Laundry Room:

For my laundry detergent, I use Purex. You can get it scent and dye free. I also alternate washings using Bi-o-kleen liquid detergent, a grapefruit seed extract based product.

For additional laundry boost, I use 20-Mule-Team Borax or OxyClean

For fabric softener I use vinegar for all bath/kitchen towels. When I use a traditional fabric softener, I use it 1/2 strength with water and use various essential oils for fragrance.

Bath

For hand soap, I really like the J/A/S/O/N/ body care product line. My favorites are Lavender and Tea Tree

In the shower we generally prefer liquid products as they seem to be the most economical for us. I rotate between J/A/S/O/N and good ol' Dr. Bronners Almond/Eucalyptus/Lavender/Peppermint, they are all good and you can buy them by the gallon and dilute before use. We have also tried the Desert Essence liquid soap.

Shampoo? Don't ask it is a constant rotation. I can't begin to list all that are used.

Shaving, I use the shaving soap/shaving cups. It really cuts down on what goes into the trash. Just a small paper wrapper. When shaving in the shower, I use a product called Shave Secret. A little goes a long way, though there is a small bottle to dispose of. I do use disposable blades, but not disposable razor handle. If I could sharpen a straight razor, I would use that to further reduce

Toothpaste, I admit is use good old standard toothpaste. I tried Tom's of Maine, but just didn't care for it.

That's it for now, but I'm sure I'll think of more.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2004 1:45 pm 
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Lavender essential oil is good as a fabric softener!

Have you tried Healthy Mouth "Tea Tree" Toothpaste? I love it! Powersmile "Peppermint to the Max" is great, too!

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 18, 2004 3:11 pm 
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Nadine,

Are you saying that essential oils act as a softener, or were you just referrng to the pleasing scent? I use Lavender or Ylang Ylang when washing bed linens.

And while on the topic of essential oils, I use Bergamot or Peppermint on a cotton ball, and place that inside a new vacuum cleaner bag at replacement time. That really freshens the room. I also use Lemon Grass and distilled water to make a spray for our she-Boxer's bandanas. I learned that one here on the Dirt Doctor forums. It was supposed to repel fleas. While it didn't work for that purpose, it sure makes her smell really sweet. :) . I also mix different oils for sprays around the house. I have 15 or so different essential oils. I have a book or two, but I would be interested in learning more about better utilizing my little stash. But I guess that might be for another post.

I have never heard of either of those products. I will admit after a less than stellar experience with the toothpaste and mouthwash from Tom's of Maine. I just went back to my old Aquafresh toothpaste and Listerene mouth wash. I am interested in hearing some positive benefits from using organic oral hygiene products.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 2004 5:05 pm 
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The essential oil of lavender does have a fabric softening effect. I do not know the science behind it, but after several people had told me this, I tried it and it did seem to work. Now, it is not the same as using something such as Mrs. Meyer's fabric softener, but it is better than nothing. Nothing is better than conventional fabric softeners which contain harmful chemicals. Who wants to wear poison?

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 23, 2004 7:01 pm 
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organic1 wrote:
The essential oil of lavender does have a fabric softening effect.


hmmm...interesting. I hope someone with some more information will chime in on this topic.

organic1 wrote:
... using something such as Mrs. Meyer's fabric softener,...


I have seen these products (Mrs. Meyer's), but haven't tried them as they all seem incredibly expensive. A much cheaper alternative, IMO to the fabric softener is plain old vinegar.

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 Post subject: alternatives
PostPosted: Sat Sep 04, 2004 7:05 am 
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This is not a cleaning question but a cooking question. And probably a stupid one at that. All the years I've used teflon pans I've thought: "Aren't we INGESTING this c**p?" If you use cast iron, you won't be anemic b/c you ingest some of the iron. Then read the article someone posted about teflon showing up in everyone's bloodstream & bought cast iron pans. Now I can't cook! (My husband says "what do you mean 'NOW'?") Maybe I need more olive oil? That would seem the case b/c everything sticks & I'm trying to brown most meats b/4 simmering...
Anyone have the 'elementary' answer???
thanks-Patty

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PostPosted: Sat Sep 04, 2004 10:12 am 
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"The answer" for us was to invest in some of the "waterless" cookware which is stainless steel clad. It has greatly reduced the amount of oils that we use in cooking. Clean up is a breeze. We will still use a teflon pan for some egg dishes, and the iron skillets have been "sent down" to the camping kit. All aluminum cookware was recycled.

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 06, 2004 2:17 pm 
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pjva;

You need to season your cast iron pans. We stopped using teflon several years ago when I got a parrot. If teflon gets overheated, it releases a gas that will kill birds (prolly not to good for us either :wink: )

Here is the seasoning guide from the Lodge site:

1. Wash new cookware with hot, soapy water and a stiff brush.

2. Rinse and dry completely.

3. Apply a thin coat of melted vegetable shortening (i.e. Crisco) to the entire surface (including lid if applicable), both inside and out.

4. Line the lower oven rack with aluminum foil (To catch any drippings), and preheat oven to 350° F.

5. Place cookware upside down on the upper oven rack, and bake for one hour.

6. Turn oven off and let cookware cool before removing from oven.

7. Store in a cool, dry place. If you have a lid for your utensil, place a folded paper towel between the lid and the utensil to allow air to circulate.

8. NEVER wash in dishwasher.

9. If your utensil develops a metallic smell or taste or shows signs of rust, never fear. Wash with soap and hot water, scour off rust, and reseason.

After use: Clean using a stiff brush and hot water only (do not wash in dishwasher). Towel dry immediately and apply a light coating of vegetable oil to cookware while still warm.

I very rarely use any soap at all on my cast iron. I also do not towel dry as water does not stick to the inside of the pans. I just blot with a paper towel (which ends up in the compost pile) then apply some vegtable oil.

We also use stainless steel pots and pans, but for frying and most other jobs I enjoy the cast iron.


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 Post subject: cast iron
PostPosted: Tue Sep 07, 2004 8:00 am 
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jrosto-
I read all the info when I got the pans & thought I had 'seasoned' them but DID NOT do the hour bake! I'm sure that will do the trick as it just couldn't be my cooking techniques! (actually, I believe the pans came w/tag saying they were already seasoned.) I do remember hearing that if food is sticking you should re-season. Thanks so much for your reply. Mr Clean-I do have some stainless steel too but soooo $$$$$ for the 'surgical' stainless.
Patty

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