January is a time of renewal, new resolutions, of starting over from a clean slate. For me, this usually translates into a determination to be better organized, keep the house tidier, or in some other way do a better job of making this house a home.
I have to admit, it’s halfway through the month and I haven’t yet settled on resolutions for this year. I’m thinking along the lines of using more eco-friendly cleaning products, though I don’t know how long that will last because I’m oh-so-very-attached to my toxic, lung-unfriendly Kaboom for the bathrooms, and my bleach for disinfecting and whitening. (I know, I know!)
Still, it’s definitely worth a try. There are dozens and dozens of homemade, eco-friendly bathroom cleaner recipes out there, so I thought I would try making one. But of course I couldn’t go the easy route and just mix vinegar and dish soap, maybe some cornstarch and peroxide… no, first I have to infuse my white vinegar with the essential oils from orange peels. This will make it smell amazing and will also harness all the cleaning power of orange oil (anyone who’s ever used Goo-Gone knows how powerful it can be).
So I bought a box of clementines. Sofía loves them. I filled a half-gallon mason jar with white vinegar, and every time we eat a clementine we’ll chuck the peels in there. Josh is under strict instructions to save his peels if he takes any to work.
I love how the light in this picture came out. It looks like one of the still-lifes we had to draw in high school.
After a couple weeks I’ll strain the vinegar – it should be nice and fragrant by then – and use it to make a bathroom cleaning spray by mixing 1 cup vinegar with 1 tablespoon cornstarch, heating to a gel, and mixing in 2 tablespoons dish soap. That will be my first experiment, anyway. If that doesn’t work, I’ll try the half-and-half hot-vinegar-and-Dawn recipe that people say works really well.
Now to find a good spray bottle that doesn’t break after just a couple squirts.