Creating a Life Free From Chaos

August Challenge: Clean Green

Your challenge for this month, if you’re not already doing it, is to start switching out your regular cleaners for some greener products. You can go all in and start making cleaners from scratch using ingredients like vinegar, baking soda and castile soap, or you can buy commercially available products. Also start making the switch from using paper towels all the time to using reusable cloths, rags, microfiber cloths or even old t-shirts cut into squares. Finally, see how little product you really need to clean something — try halving your laundry detergent, spritzing a little cleaner on a cloth instead of spraying it all over the counter, and using a damp rag in place of dusting cleaner. Not only will you save cash, you’ll have cleaner air quality in your home and fewer chemicals running down the drain.

Share your favorite green cleaners, and I’ll post them. Happy Cleaning!

I Guess I’ll Be Wrinkled…

I’m not a dry cleaning junkie. I don’t have that many clothes that require it — but I do use it to clean and press a couple of pairs of pants a week. I send them to the cleaners mainly to be pressed so they look professional for work. But with the negative effect on the environment, not to mention the negative effect on our budget, I decided to try caring for my work clothes at home. The experiment started out well — I washed the pants in cold water on delicate, dried them on low just to get the wet out, then hung dry them the rest of the way. They look fine…they just need to be ironed. There’s the problem. I couldn’t iron my way out of paper bag. I detest ironing. I’m not very good at it, so it rarely gets done. Hence my use of the dry cleaner and his wonderful clothes press.

The other morning I grabbed a pair and slung it on the ironing board, determined to wear those pants to work. Fifteen minutes and a bit of swearing later, I had a pair of pants with 900 creases. They got tossed aside, and I wore one of the few pairs I have left that still has that dry cleaner flatness to them. I’ve been avoiding my newly clean but wrinkled pants all week…I am so glad tomorrow is Casual Friday and I can wear jeans, because I am fresh out of pressed pants.

I called around to the local green dry cleaners, but they charge double what the regular cleaners cost, and it’s simply not in the budget to go that route. I have two options at this point…continue dry cleaning as minimally as possible or figure out how to iron properly. Or I can try to bribe my husband to iron for me. That may be the option I try first.