Updated: Aug 28, 2019
When I changed our homes cleaners to be more natural, I also found it was a good opportunity to update my approach to cleaning. Like most moms I still do some cleaning every day, including a load of laundry, to keep everything up and avoid as much as possible having to use sacred weekend time for things like laundry. However, how I approach this every day seems to have evolved with the replacement of my cleaning products.
There are lots of “schedules” available on Pinterest and other online sites for help in setting a schedule for your home but I have found none really fit our family’s needs. I try to fit in cleaning when I can or when something needs it to be honest but I found over time there is a general routine of repeated activities I’m doing daily, weekly, and so on. I don’t think that’s very different than any other mom’s home life to be honest. If you’re someone who can keep everything on a pretty colored chart or that likes checking things off a list I applaud you tremendously.
For me, what’s different is not so much the physical routine of cleaning but how I now keep track of things I need to use for cleaning. Remember, I no longer just run to my supermarket to purchase cleaners but I will need ingredients and you have to be organized about that for the best deal and quantity you need.
Ingredients and Recipes
I keep a simple notebook of the recipes I’m using to make my cleaners. It lists the ingredients along with the prices I typically pay for each ingredient. If it is a new item I’m making I also add in container costs for the first time making it. I’ll also scribble down things I’ve learned over time making these cleaners or different oils I like to use for different aromas.
For instance in the notebook on the page for the dishwasher tablet recipe that I posted for you earlier this month, I modified this recipe to include 1/4 cup Borax. I noticed in the original recipe my dishes at times came out spotty but including the Borax eliminates that. Also by adding the OnGuard Concentrate liquid in this mixture very, very slowly and constantly stirring until the citric acid stops “poofing” helps tremendously when pressing it into molds.
I’ve also kept in this notebook things I want to try as well as things that didn’t work so well for me. Over time I’d like to expand into making more of my own cleaners but for now I’m just capturing ideas on what may work and notes about how to move in that direction. With working full time it’s not always convenient to have the time to make everything.
This notebook helps me keep track of expenses and be able to honestly demonstrate to you how much you are really saving on cleaners when you make them yourself or purchase an off-the-shelf product.
There are several places I shop for ingredients. For instance baking soda is cheapest at Wal-Mart. When I purchase it I am usually buying 6-8 boxes of it at a time to have on hand. (it is usually $.46 a box but I’ve found it on sale at times for $.39 a box). The dollar stores usually have pretty spray bottles or containers for holding cleaners. Bulk Apothecary is a great place to check for Citric Acid and soap base. Do your homework and check several online and box stores to keep a price list of your ingredients.
I keep track of what cleaners I’m using and when I start looking low on them. This helps me set out time for the cleaners I’m making to ensure I’m not running completely out of something. It also helps me in looking for best pricing on the items I’m purchasing, including the ingredients I use to make my own cleaners. Most products you purchase have a 6-8 week cycle where they will be on sale. Every single store has a cycle where they use sales to rotate their stock.
On the essential oils I’m using in my cleaners, I also have a strategy for getting these items without busting my family budget. First, I only use doTERRA essential oils. They are pure, high quality and I can trust that every single bottle was tested for quality and purity. The price of doTERRA oils is less than other brands and more than others. I have written before on the pricing differences with doTERRA compared to others that you can find in my blog.
I order doTERRA oils on their loyalty program so that I earn points back on every order. This means I also get my shipping reimbursed via points. All of those points I save up and purchase the oils that are more expensive. For instance I purchase Frankincense, Yarrow-Pom and Melissa from points. This method saves me out of pocket money. My basic oils like Lemon, Grapefruit and Melaleuca are well under $15 per bottle and last a long time even with using them in cleaners.