Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Triple "R" Tuesdays

Reuse, Reduce, Recycle!

I've been attempting to declutter the house for a little bit. I've went from being a full time student, full time Mom, full time spouse, and full time employee. The employee thing had to be cut back, because though Mr. V thinks I'm great, I'm not THAT great. And due to some issues with our babysitter (aka Mom) needing knee replacement surgery, I had to quit work as well. Which I was going to have to quit come August anyways. I'm going to have an intense semester and there would have been too much of a conflict between school and work. So, I've been looking at everything in my house as a means of do I need it, can I use it, or does it need to go to someone who can. The mantra Reuse, reduce or recycle. So I've been slowly pecking away at things to donate, recycle, keep, or throw out. I've also been looking into cleaning in a more natural and clean way since having had my son. I've mentioned earlier about finding a good "recipe" for homemade laundry soap. I got it from C. Michele. Since this is my own personal journey, there will be things that aren't as green or as frugal as I could have done, as in cloth diapering. Honestly, Lil Mr. V's dad doesn't like the idea. Though it doesn't bother me. Especially now
that he's getting older. But we do things like push mow our small yard with a push reel mower. And I am cleaning more with vinegar and baking soda instead of all the harsh chemicals that you buy in the store. Though our negative effect isn't nil, we are reducing it from what it was.

On the reusing side of things, I've rediscovered rags. You know, those things you use to wash dishes and the softer ones that you use to wash your body. So instead of body puffs and sponges, I just use rags. I have some old towels I need to cut down and re-hem for dish towels and hand towels. I'm also putting myself out there to no longer buy bottled water. I do have a plastic reusable bottle that I'm using for my water. I also have a water filter pitcher that sits in my fridge. It's one of those 2 gallon ones. So I get good cold, refreshing water from there. So instead of going to the convenience store to get water or a soda or coffee before class, I'm grabbing my bottle and filling it up and heading out.

On the reduce front, I'm definitely doing that. I'm not using as much soap as I used to. I'm also toying with the idea of not using standard shampoo and using baking soda instead to wash my hair. It makes me wonder if my semi-curly hair would turn curly. I've heard that since it's so much lighter on your hair and if you can get past the icky stage, it's better for your hair. But it's that icky stage that worries me. I don't like having gross hair. But we'll see when I get my gumption up.

On the recycling front is where most of the action has been happening. So far, I've taken garbage bags of clothes, shoes, and toys of Lil Mr. V's to a local pro-life advocacy group. I've already taken a few things to our local goodwill. I have a couple of boxes and a laundry basket full of items from my kitchen and some clothes to take this week. Mr. V mentioned that he was also going to be going through his clothes to get rid of things that he could no longer or would no longer wear. So, we're working on this decluttering in our home.

What are you guys doing to declutter your home?


  1. I take a bag a week (usually) of things I find around my house to the Salvation Army. I keep a bag hanging on a door knob and just drop things in it throughout the week. When it gets full, it is gone.

    Good for you.

    *whisper* I've not been washing my hair for about a month now. I was planning on keeping it a secret and seeing how well it worked before I actually did a big blog entry about it. It is working pretty good so far. As for soaps and body washes---I went to Walgreens here in town and purchased a 32 oz bottle of "Dr. Bronners Castile Soap" it was about 14.00 and some change. It only takes a little bit--and I can use it as a body wash, a shampoo (if you wanted), clean the kitchen counters (peppermint deters ants and bugs)---you can even use it for laundry.

  2. I want to get to the point of taking 1 bag/week of stuff. I'll get there. I've still not gone through everything. I was thinking of doing a big purge, but I think that's just bogging me down more. So I'll just take what I have already done up, and then gather more stuff and take it when it gets full, like you were saying.

    So are you using the baking soda and such? Or are you using the Dr. Bonner's instead? I'm already trying to get my hair unaccustomed to being washed EVERY single day. So I'm trying to get it to adapt to being washed every other day. And so far, after a few harrowing weeks, it's starting to come together where it isn't SO icky looking the next morning. I was seriously thinking of doing the 1cup water to 1tbsp baking soda and rinsing with vinegar thing. I'm going to use up what I have as far as body wash is concerned and then I was going to try to figure something out. And from my understanding Castile soap is some of the most GENTLE soaps you can use. So, I was going to wait until then before shopping for some new stuffs.

  3. I use castile soap when I make Laundry. I get mine at Kroger and it is called "Kirk's Castile Soap"---it is in the soap section (sometimes they put things like that in their "organic" section, but it is just there along with the rest of the soap so it is easy to find.

    I tried just using that (the Kirk's Castile bar) on my hair, but it makes it very dry. I don't know if that is the way your hair *should* feel without all of the product we are used to, or if it is just me.

    So, what I've been doing is taking an empty bottle, putting a very small amount of Dr. Bronner's in the bottom and filling it up with water. Then when it is time to shampoo, I put 1 tablespoon of baking soda into a cup, add a squirt or two of the Dr. Bronner/water solution and then fill the cup up the rest of the way with water. (I really missed the later feeling, and this helps me out.) I alternate between using apple cider vinegar and organic conditioner (personally, I like the cider vinegar wash better---it works best if you use COLD water to rinse out).

    Oh, I also bought some Orange Essential Oil from the Health Food Store (it was about 3-4 dollars) I put a few drops 2-3 into my vinegar/water solution to get rid of that smell. You can use any kind of essential oil, that was just one of the cheapest they had.

    I'll blog about this in the next few days (weeks?) so you'll have more information/opinion. That is just what I have so far.

  4. I think you're hair isn't supposed to be so dry. If it is, then you're using too much of it or doing it too often. Like I said, I haven't gotten gutsy enough to do it. I'll probably do it after graduation because I don't want the gross hair for graduation, and I don't want to shampoo it and undo all my hard work and start over. So I'll just hold off until then at the least. But thanks for the information. It definitely helps me understand it better.