Just kidding. I'm a dork. But in all seriousness, I do want to talk about "the white stuff" today.
No, not that silly! I'm talking about baking soda.
That's right, that stuff that you've been putting in your chocolate chip cookies and using to deodorize your fridge for years. I realized today that we go through a LOT of baking soda in our house. A lot of people don't realize that if you leave the baking aisle of the supermarket, you can usually find big boxes of it in the laundry aisle. This is handy because, like I said, we use a lot of baking soda in our house.
What do we use it for? Well, let me give you my top five uses for baking soda, not counting cooking and fridge freshening.
1) For starters, I use it in the laundry. I have a toddler who has been "officially" potty trained for a few months now, but he does have an occasional accident. I also have a husband who is slightly stinky by nature. I put a half cup of baking soda (along with half a cup of Borax, which is also all natural and not harmful to the environment) in every load of laundry along with my usual laundry detergent. This helps to get rid of any lingering odors in our clothes so that they don't end up smelling faintly of old pee. (For the record, that would not be good!)
2) Baking soda is also a big part of how I've dealt with that little "critter" situation
in my compost pile. A cup each of baking soda, borax, and confectioner's sugar, blended then sprinkled under the pile before I turn it has been doing the trick!
3) You can use baking soda as an alternative to harsh scrubbing cleansers like Soft Scrub and Comet that are not very environmentally friendly. Just sprinkle some on half a lemon and use that to scour countertops, cutting boards, and more!
4) If you've got dogs (I have two) you know how they can make your carpet not so fresh to borrow a phrase from a gross old commercial. (seriously not interested in hearing about other people's funky girl parts) If you take two cups baking soda, sprinkle in about 30 drops of essential oil, then pass it through a fine sieve a couple of times to break up the clumps, this will make a wonderful alternative to those flowery carpet sprinkles they sell. Those always smell too strong to me anyway! Just shake it all over your rug (I like to let it sit overnight, but 15-20 minutes is fine) and then vacuum.
5) One cup of baking soda and 30 drops of essential oil, prepared the same way will make a nice, simple air freshener for your bathroom. Put it in a jar with holes poked in the lid, set it on the back of the toilet or on a counter, and just give it a little shake every so often to expose the scent to the air.
And here's a bonus! Put a teaspoon into your shampoo before you wash your hair to get it really clean. You only need to do this about once every two weeks to a month, depending on how much styling product you use. You can add a little to your regular facial cleanser too if you want to make a super gentle face scrub. Just don't do it too often because you will rub your face raw! No more than once a week.
So many uses for this inexpensive and GREEN product! I'm sure I've barely touched the tip of the iceberg in listing them.
Speaking of green though... I just wanted to share that it's been a month since we've had any paper towels in the house! I'm so proud of us because I thought they would be impossible to give up, but we've managed. I have to wash a lot of old washcloths now, but at least they're reusable. Once we get our clothesline up they'll be even greener! Yay!