I have learned so much about cleaning this past year!
I have cleaned as a side-job since I was in college, but it wasn't really until I became pregnant with Peter that I really started to increase my awareness of the ingredients in cleaning products I was using.
I have gradually become aware of more and more additives and chemicals that are being found to have negative side effects on our health.
So, naturally when I found out I was pregnant, I wanted to minimize exposure to any of the unneccesary toxins I could which, surprisingly, is actually pretty difficult when it comes to cleaning products.
In fact, some really common brands produce several products that have been found to be as harmful as second-hand-smoke when inhaled in a confined space.
Don't beleive me? Check out EthicalConsumer.org.
When it comes to most cleaning products, including ones we use to clean our bodies, the main components to avoid are often referred to as the "Toxic Trio":
have been linked to cancers, hormone disruption, skin and eye irritation, and long-term negative effects in aquatic ecosystems.
Many of these types of chemicals have been banned in other countries, but not in the US.
If you are like me, I suppose you are probably wondering "Why is this?"
In the US it is not a requirement for companies to list all of the ingredients on the product- as is the requirement we are used to for manufactured food products.
So, my guess is that people just are not able to see what is in these products.
Only the main ingredient-families have to be listed on the packaging for cleaning products, soaps, conditioners and cosmetics. You can find a more complete ingredient list at the website that is required to be listed on the package, but do you have time to look up every ingredient list for every product you look at on the shelf?
I certainly don't...
Even just looking at the ingredients on the packages of products where they are actually listed gets seriously exhausting, and makes me want to set the item back down and just go without soap for the week...
This aspect of shopping certainly doesn't help how much I dislike going to the grocery store!
The best solution I have come up with so far, is to just make my own cleaning products.
This is a lot easier than it sounds.
You can actually use what I call the "Terrific Trio" to replace a lot of detergents and soaps in your home.
These products are available in very convenient amounts at most grocery stores, often in the same aisle as the cleaning products you are already purchasing, and they are cheaper!
We have used these three powders in our home for years- (we made the switch after Chris started getting rashes where his clothes would fold, like in the creases of his arms, around his neck, and on the backs of his knees). The rashes went away completely as soon as we switched and they have not been back.
Chris knows how to make clothes dirty- let me tell ya!
Between fixing equipment and vehicles, working his construction jobs, and helping me with the farm shenanigans- I'm surprised anything gets the dirt, grass stains, blood, fat, and grease out of our clothes!
The "Terrific Trio", plus a couple of other handy and easily accessible solutions take care of it all, and for wayyyy cheaper and with wayyyy less harm to us and our environment!
Here is a short list of what we use for different types of cleaning in our home:
Dishwasher- 1tbps borax, 1 tbsp washing soda, 1tbsp citric acid in the little detergent reservoir
Clothes Washing Machine- 1/4 borax, 1/4 cup washing soda right in the machine with the clothes
Stain-Remover- A squirt of peroxide on stained spots before placing in the washing machine
Hand-Soap- We use bar-soap to eliminate plastic packaging. We like Castile Soap and local soaps we have found in shops downtown or from local makers that are made with milk and tallow for moisturizing properties.
Shampoo- We also use bar shampoo. Our local Food Coop sells a couple of different brands. Our favorites so far, are J.R. Liggets, Castille, and Acure
Body Soap- Castille Soap and Acure also work great as body soap! I also appreciate soaps made with milk or tallow/lard because they offer a moisturizing aspect.
Disinfecting Spray/Glass Cleaner/Floor Cleaner- Orange Peels Soaked in Vinegar for 24 to 48 hours. This works great for wiping down surfaces and smells good too!
Polish- A banana peel, orange peel, or microfiber cloth with a water-and-baking-soda-paste smeared on it. This sounds weird- I know, but it actually works really well for polishing smooth surfaces!
Grout/Drain Scrub- An old toothbrush with a water-washing-soda-paste gets hard-to-reach crevices sparkling again.
*The Terrific Trio is free of several common toxins, but that does not mean they are safe to consume! Please keep these salts out of reach of children and stored safely so they cannot be improperly used by anyone in your household.*
Do you have any home-made washing/cleaning hacks that you like to use in your home?
I would love to hear about them! Leave a comment and tell me your go-to's!
I hope this list helps you reduce costs and eliminate some unneccesary toxins in your home.
How our Bulk Meat Packages Work:
If you have been on our email list for a while, you may have heard me mention Bulk Meat Deposits before.
We sell meat in 2 main ways:
1- Through our Monthly CSA Subscription- great for folks who don't have much freezer space
2- Bulk Packages like whole animals, halves, and quarters- great for folks who want to stock their freezer once or twice a year
Bulk Packages are the most cost-effective way for folks to get our meat products.
They require a deposit up-front and then the rest is paid once the meat is ready.
Pork- Whole and Half Pork Packages (Ready Winter and Summer)
Lamb- Whole and Half Lamb Packages (Ready in the Fall)
Beef- Whole, Half, Quarter, and Eighth Beef Packages (Ready in the Spring and Summer)
I open up deposits ahead of time so my team of ranchers and I can plan ahead. If we don't have deposits down for all of the animals that were born in a year, we sell them to another farm or ranch so we aren't feeding any extra animals over the toughest times of the year.
This is why we need you to save your spot with a deposit, if you would like to purchase in bulk in 2023.
Deposits will begin to open up in February/March.
But, for now, I am giving you the chance to try out a sample of our Pork, Lamb, and/or Beef so you can decide whether you like them enough to commit to a larger amount, before deposits open up.
You only have 2 more weeks to try out our Pork, Lamb, and Beef in our Sampler Bundles!
Until next week!
-BJ and the Taste of the Wind Crew