DIY Simply Cleaning

Ok y'all. I'm going to go ahead and say it. I don't like cleaning. I hate cleaning in fact. I'm not very good at it, and it stresses me out. I would much rather build a new bathroom every week than clean ours. And if you talk to anyone in my (very judgmental) family, they will tell you that my house is usually a mess.

What can I say? I have four kids and a husband, and not a one of them keeps things in order like they should. (Am I playing Eve here?)

Another problem I have is lack of time. Or rather, since I hate cleaning the way I do, I don't want to spend any extra time cleaning or preparing to clean. I want to get it done, as quickly and painlessly as possible.

Confessions aside, I do have to clean. I can't clean with toxic cleaners, even though the germaphobe in me wants to bleach everything. The logical side of me says some germs are good. I've read or looked at lots of cleaning recipes, and usually those involve too much time, or ingredients that I don't have or can't afford. Essential oils are lovely and all, but they are also expensive.

Then, finally, I found this blog: Going Green with a Bronner Mom at Ahh, simplicity. I ordered Dr. Bronner's Tea Tree Oil castile soap, Dr Bronner's Citrus Orange castile soap, and Sal's Suds. I liked these because they have the essential oils in them that everyone talks about. And these have lasted me more than a year or two now. I'm not even sure when I ordered them.

I use the tea tree oil soap in the bathrooms. And the orange in the kitchen. And Sal's Suds in the laundry room, for stains, or cloth diapers every once in a while, or just some extra cleaning power.

I used to measure everything, but now I just pour it in and move on as quickly as possible. I have two spray bottles that get soap filled up to the lowest dash, and filled the rest of the way with water. Easy. (One day I'd like to upgrade my spray bottles to something like this, but mostly just because it's pretty.)

When I'm cleaning, I spray everything down and wipe it up. I use some baking soda (or washing soda if I have it) for extra scrubbing and in the toilet bowls. I bought a bunch of microfiber cleaning cloths and sponges for these jobs. They are holding up well, sometimes I just wonder if there is something better out there. I think I'd like to switch to cotton cleaning cloths.

I mix up half vinegar and half water for the floors and mirrors. I usually add some peppermint essential oil (yep, I do have one, it helps deter ants) to the floor and mirror spray. I use a dry mop for the floors, mostly because I used to have laminate wood floors and it worked wonderfully on those. Here I have tile floors (don't even get me started on tile floors), and I probably need to switch to a wet mop and using one of my castile sprays. I just haven't yet, because I have the dry mop, and I don't have a wet mop. And wet mops can't be washed, which freaks me out a little.

I love that it's simple, it doesn't require a lot of spray bottles, and it doesn't take a lot of time. I could just use one for all my cleaning (and I have, when I'm in a hurry or being lazy and don't want to mix up another bottle), but I do like the orange scent in the kitchen.

I don't make our laundry detergent, we use Nellie's (thanks to Mom; it's a wonderful Christmas gift), and I have not figured out what to do about the dishwasher detergent, so right now we use conventional. I've tried DIY detergents before and they just did not work for me. And Jeremy hated them, so there's that.

Anyway, how do you clean? Do you have a dishwasher detergent recipe that works? Let me know below.


  1. Great post. I make my own washing powder and it isn't too bad although I have to work hard on my sons work trousers (he is a shearer and they get awfully greasy). I must admit I use a conventional cleaner otherwise but you have encouraged me to look at other less chemical ones. Thanks for sharing this at Good Morning Mondays. Blessings

    1. When I've made the dishwasher detergent, it's always made my glassware cloudy. I hope one day to figure out an alternative, but for now I do what I can. Thanks for commenting Terri!

  2. I *love* Dr. Bronner products and these sound amazing! :)

  3. I think I need to order some Dr. Bronners! I had a mid sized bottle that lasted me a few years! Great stuff. I get freaked out about germs as well. With 8 kids if one of them gets sick...well it can catch on like wild fire, and I can't say that that's a whole lot of fun. I haven't tried it myself, but have read that a great alternative to bleach is to spray the offending item/spot/surface with vinegar, followed by a spray of hydrogen peroxide. This can not be made up ahead of time, as the reaction does not last long, so you have to spray them separately.


  4. I love making my own cleaners. Safer, healthier, less expensive. Thanks for sharing. Pinning this one.

  5. I can agree with you that the older I get the more I don't like cleaning, but since we have to clean I also use DIY cleaners. Never buy any conventional cleaner at all. It is so much more economical and healthier. None of us needs those toxins that conventional cleaners are loaded with. I use baking soda a lot too, white vinegar, some essential oils, Dr Bronners soap, peroxide and water. Visiting from Home Stead Blog hop.

  6. Do you find the peppermint essential oil helps with ants? I had read that it's good for mice - in a desperate google search a few years ago...:). I hadn't heard about helping with ants. I am curious.

    I use Dr. Bronners also and it takes forever to get through a bottle!

    1. I have found it helps with ants, you just have to spray a wide area and any ant trails. I haven't found it very helpful for mice...


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