So, my friend Ashley who did all the amazing printing for our wedding and is totally crafty in so many ways, and I take turns at inspiring each other. I inspired her to become a Dave Ramsey faithful follower. She's inspired me to start couponing and turned me on to this SWEET website that makes it dummy-proof (exactly what I needed). On my first trip to Publix, armed with only one online printable coupon, I bought over $53 worth of groceries for $29 just by taking advantage of the weekly Buy 1 Get 1 deals!!!!
If you are going to coupon seriously, then you have to give up your brand loyalty. Now, I am not an extreme couponer; I use it mainly for food and paper products. Other items I buy, such as toiletries and household cleaners, have a totally different set of values attached that have nothing to do with price. I buy animal and environmentally friendly products. I try not to buy any makeup or toiletry items unless they have "not [been] tested on animals" (for me anyway, Matt is not a convert yet - he's brand loyal).
Collectively, we can change market production by changing our demand for certain things! We are already starting to see big companies that make chemical-based household cleaners respond to the change in market demands, like Clorox coming out with a "green cleaner" line (which probably isn't anything but dyed green anyway since they refuse to release the ingredients to the public). For things such as laundry detergent or other cleaner needs (not listed below), buy from a reputable company such as Seventh Generation (click the link for COUPONS!).
"As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord," (Joshua 24:15) and make our own cleaning products!!! If you want to rid your house of harsh chemical-based cleaning products and create a healthier, safer environment for your family, here are a few "recipes" to use. First, tightly seal up all of your chemical-based cleaning products and dispose of them at your LOCAL HAZARDOUS WASTE FACILITY. Next, get to shopping and mixing!!
2 Empty spray bottles (re-use one you have if it's already empty, but don’t pour the chemicals down the drain!)
2 Glass jars with tight fitting lid
Distilled white vinegar
Olive or vegetable oil
Tea tree oil (optional disinfectant)
Non-toxic liquid soap (vegetable based/
All Purpose Cleaner:
Plastic spray bottle, mix equal parts vinegar and water, 1 tsp lemon juice, 1 tsp tea tree oil (optional), shake before use
Window & Mirror Cleaner:
Plastic spray bottle, mix 2 parts water, 3 parts vinegar, spray on and wipe with newspaper or paper towel
Glass jar, mix baking soda and castile soap to paste consistency, add lemon juice for scent and/or tea tree oil for disinfectant (both optional), use as scrub for tough stains and toilet bowl cleaner
Wood Furniture Polish:
Glass jar, mix 2 parts olive or vegetable oil, 1 part lemon juice, shake well and apply to furniture with clean lint free rag, let stand, polish with dry rag
In 1 quart of warm water, add 2 Tablespoons of baking soda, 1 Tablespoon of salt, a piece of aluminum foil, and the item to be polished. Let item sit for at least 15 minutes.
Pour ¼ cup of baking soda down drain, followed by ½ cup of vinegar. Let mixture stand for 15 minutes, then pour 2 quarts of boiling water down the drain.
Recipes provided by the Toxics Use Reduction Institute
Ashley (the one who is always inspiring me) once again inspired me by her comment!!!
I have always heard you can make your own baby wipes, so I figured - why not clean-up wipes too??? Just follow the directions at the link to prepare the paper towel roll and use this recipe for homemade green clean-up wipes:
1 Cup water
1 Cup vinegar
1/4 Cup lemon juice
1 teaspoon tea tree oil (disinfectant)