Category Archives: Home Living Tips

The Top Six Overlooked Common Household Dangers
Posted by October 15, 2017 at 1:51 PM under Environment Home Living Tips

People are spending more and more time in their homes, as such there is an increased risk for something to go wrong that is actually quite unexpected. While virtually everyone knows of the importance of fire alarms and carbon monoxide detectors, there are many other overlooked household dangers that aren’t given as much attention.

 

Let’s take a look at some of the most problematic household dangers that you might not be thinking about on a day to day basis. Overlooking these dangers could increase your risk of disease and even death! That is why this might be the most important article you read all day.

 

Overlooked Danger #1 Toxic Carpeting

Carpeting may be comfortable, especially on a cold winter morning, but carpeting is also a potential breeding ground for bacteria, mold and a warehouse storing a variety of allergens. Making matters even worse is the fact that carpeting can degas toxic chemicals for years.

 

The simple fact is that carpeting is a fixture in most homes. If you can’t remove your carpeting, then consider buying a rug cleaner and using it frequently. Soap and hot water will usually do the trick, so there is no need to buy a chemical rug cleaning solution. Carpet, since it is built into the house, tends to fade into the background like the walls themselves. But keeping your carpet as clean as possible and even replacing it every few years is a prudent move, especially if you have small children and/or pets!

 

Overlooked Danger #2 Air Quality

In general, indoor air quality gets overlooked by most people. The same people that will invest heavily in buying the very best food and exercise equipment and gym memberships will often completely, or almost completely, ignore indoor air quality. Recent medical studies have shown that there is a link between air pollution and diseases such as Alzheimer’s.

 

Air quality plays a role in health and while you can’t do much about outdoor air pollution, you can do a great deal about the indoor quality of your air. Investing in air purification systems such as those made by IQAir, which have been proven to trap airborne particles, bacteria and viruses is a prudent step.

 

Likewise, frequently changing your home’s HVAC filters, buying air cleaning plants, such as the durable and low maintenance snake plant, and opening windows when you burn food during cooking are all steps you can take to improve your indoor air quality. Additionally, purchasing an air quality monitor such as those made by Dylos, which measure the number of air particles in an area, is another good step. Inexpensive air quality monitors don’t reveal the specifics types of particles in the air but they will serve to give you a general idea of your indoor air quality. The importance of protecting your indoor air quality is difficult to overstate.

 

Overlooked Danger #3 Electromagnetic Fields

Just as indoor air quality is often overlooked, the same holds true for electromagnetic fields. This is definitely something most people never consider. But with the increased amount of gadgets and technology in our homes, the EM fields can actually get rather out of control.

 

Further, homes with old wiring or homes with poorly installed wiring (in which wires are coiled up within the walls), can produce dangerously high electromagnetic fields. Exposure to high powered electromagnetic fields can be dangerous to one’s health and may pose a potentially strong danger to young children.

 

The first step in addressing this problem is to buy an electromagnetic field detector. These detectors will tell you where you have the strongest electromagnetic fields. All homes have areas that have higher EM fields, such as the area immediately around your refrigerator for example, but the key is to know where those areas are and to check them. It is especially important to check areas where you spend a good deal of time, such as around your bed, home office, favorite chair or child’s bedroom. Like poor air quality, EM fields may be invisible. But powerful EM fields, especially with prolonged exposure, are not a good idea.

 

Overlooked Danger #4 Unlocked Cabinets

Unlocked cabinets can pose a significant danger for children and even animals. Kitchen cabinets can store everything from knives to medicine to cleaning products. Properly locking your kitchen cabinets so that children and pets are unable to enter is a smart move and one you are not likely to regret.

 

Overlooked Danger #5 Using Space Heaters Wisely

 

Space heaters are a popular way to heat areas not effectively reached by a heating system, but they can also be dangerous. Not only are space heaters a potential source of high EM fields, but they are also fire hazards.

 

One of the best ways to safeguard against a space heater related fire is to purchase a high-quality space heater. Dyson’s Cold+Hot Fan has many built in safety features that help make it a good space heater choice.

 

Overlooked Danger #6 Radon-Odorless, Tasteless and Potentially Deadly

As radon is tested at the time of a purchase of a home, this danger may be something you have considered. But what if you live in a rental unit or it has been decades since you bought your house? You should never assume that you don’t have radon. Until you perform an actual radon test, you simply can’t know whether or not you have a radon issue. Radon is colorless, odorless and over time it can damage lungs. If you do have a radon issue there are many ways that it can be addressed including a radon mitigation system which pulls radon out of your home and releases it outside.

 

The best way to avoid problems is to tackle them head on and in advance. Thinking about what you eat and drink and making sure that you get enough exercise are all great ways to protect your health, but the fact is that this is only the start. Living a healthy life and being healthy means protecting you and your family from threats seen and unseen. While this isn’t always easy it is, of course, worth the time.

The Six Best Non-Dairy Ice Cream Alternatives
Posted by September 30, 2017 at 6:11 PM under Environment Home Living Tips

If you have been wanting to go vegan or are allergic to dairy, perhaps you’ve worried that you’ll never be able to have delicious ice cream again. But then there is good news. The same holds true for those wanting to reduce their dairy consumption or just add a little variety to their dessert choices. You will be happy to hear that there are now more ice cream alternatives than ever before! And we’re not just talking about ice cream parlors, we’re talking about products you can make or buy and eat in the comfort of your own home.

 

The old days of ice crystal filled tasteless soy ice cream is long gone. In its place, we now have an array of excellent non-dairy ice cream alternatives that are sure to please. Perhaps most surprising about today’s new wave of ice cream alternatives is the sheer variety and quality that they represent. Now, explore a few of the highest-quality and tastiest ice cream alternatives on the market. (Trust us, after this article you will definitely want to put down the laundry and grab a pint of ice cream.)

 

Option #1 Avocado Ice Cream

Whomever it was who first thought of making avocado ice cream is, in fact, a genius. There are plenty of online recipes for avocado ice cream. The Food Network even has a tasty avocado ice cream recipe that is easy to make and serve to your family. What makes this recipe amazing is that there is zero churning required.

 

If you’ve ever made your own ice cream then you know all too well that the churning part of making your own ice cream serves to take out some of the joy. Simply puree your avocado, add milk, lemon juice and salt and put it in a blender. Then add whipped cream and put everything in a pan and let it freeze overnight. Another great avocado ice cream recipe can be found over at Kawaling Pinoy.

If you don’t want to make your own avocado ice cream, there are companies eager to help you out. One avocado ice cream company is Organic Cado. Organic Cado has three great flavors: Mint Chocolate Chip, Deep Dark Chocolate and Simply Lemon. Organic Cado uses great ingredients. For example, their Mint Chocolate Chip flavor contains just organic avocado, organic cane sugar, organic chocolate chip, organic vanilla extract, organic guar gum and organic peppermint oil.

 

Option #2 Coconut Ice Cream

 

Coconut ice cream has become a very popular option with vegetarians, vegans and lots of others who love the creamy taste of coconut. Companies such as Coconut Bliss and Nada Moo have jumped into the coconut ice cream market with both feet. Coconut Bliss and Nada Moo both feature a mindboggling number of great flavors. Nada Moo’s organic flavors include Chocolate Peanut Butter, Birthday Cake (yes, birthday cake), Rockiest Road, That Snickerdoodle Dough, Salted Caramel, Chocolate Cherry Fudge Brownie, Pistachio Nut, Lotta Mint Chip, Vanilla, Gotta Do Chocolate, Cookies and Cream, Maple Pecan, Chocolate Almond Chip, Creamy Coconut and even Java Crunch!

 

There are many coconut ice creams on the market, but you can also make your own with a few easy ingredients including canned coconut milk. Eat Healthy and Eat Happy has a great recipe for Coconut Milk Cinnamon Ice Cream.

 

Option #3 Cashew Ice Cream

Cashewtopia is a cashew based ice cream from Organic Nectars. They have several flavors currently available: Cherry Chocolate Swirl, Chocolate, Chocolate Hazelnut, Mint Chocolate Swirl, Pistachio and Vanilla Bean. Cashewtopia’s ingredients are organic, and the ice creams are generally low in sugar, using organic agave inulin and organic evaporated coconut palm nectar. Every Cashewtopia pint is made with 100% raw organic cashews and is free of unprocessed sugar.

 

Option #4 Soy Ice Cream

Soy ice cream is often thought of as the only ice cream alternative, but obviously, the non-dairy ice cream landscape has really changed in the last few years. One soy ice cream that really delivers is So Delicious.

 

So Delicious makes soymilk ice creams that include Chocolate Velvet, Creamy Vanilla, Peanut Butter Zig Zag and others. What helps make So Delicious stand out is the fact that the company makes ice creams from almond milk, coconut milk and cashew milk, meaning that So Delicious is tackling non-dairy ice cream from every angle. Clearly, they have experience.

 

Option #5 Almond Ice Cream with Ben & Jerry’s

So Delicious isn’t the only company that is making an almond based ice cream. The famous Ben & Jerry’s ice cream company also makes a vegan, almond milk based ice cream. Currently, they have seven different flavors: Caramel Almond Brittle, Cherry Garcia (of course), Coconut Seven Layer Bar, Chocolate Fudge Brownie, Chunky Monkey, Coffee Carmel Fudge and P.B. & Cookies.

 

Option #6 A Hybrid-Coconut and Cashew Ice Cream

 

We are currently living in what many have called the “Golden Age” of non-dairy ice creams. One company had the bright idea of making their ice cream out of a combination of organic coconut and organic cashews. The Raw Ice Cream Company offers a range of flavors including Chocolate, Vanilla, Chocolate Hazelnut, Chocolate Cookie, Chocolate Fudge, Vanilla Fudge Swirl, Mint and Mint Chip. Currently, the Raw Ice Cream Company is only available in New York. But with a little luck, soon it will be in stores everywhere.

 

The Bright Future of the Non-Dairy Ice Cream Market

 

Whether you decide to choose coconut, avocado, almond, soy, cashew or even a mixture of ingredients, customers looking to avoid dairy now have the more options than ever. Vegans, individuals who are lactose intolerant and people are simply looking for something interesting, new and, of course, tasty, will find that they have no shortage of incredible options. Companies both large and small have jumped into the lucrative ice cream market. In the process, there now is pretty much no excuse not to eat ice cream.

The Top 3 Water Purifier Options and Why You Need Them
Posted by September 17, 2017 at 5:51 PM under Environment Home Living Tips

Water quality doesn’t just vary around the world, but can actually vary from state to state, city to city and even neighborhood to neighborhood. Recently high profile water problem news stories, such as the problems with the water supply in Flint, Michigan, help to underscore just how important it is to purify and safeguard one’s own water. The bottom line is that water is simply too important to your overall health to not take proactive measures.

 

Like air contamination, water contamination is often overlooked when it comes to health and safety, which is a shame. Water contamination stories are becoming more and more common. Industrial and agricultural runoff, ineffective sewer treatment facilities that were not designed to remove drugs excreted into the water supply and other sources of contamination do find their way into the water and food supply.

 

While there are many reasons that local water supplies are being contaminated, ranging from aging infrastructure to fracking, industrial and agricultural runoff and more, what can’t be denied is that the average person needs to purify their water, especially their drinking water.

In this article, we’ll examine a few of the best water purification options on the market. We will go beyond the simple water pitcher purification options that so many people rely upon for their clean water. While often better than no water purification option, these water pitchers unfortunately often fail to provide truly effective water purification. This is especially true in problematic regions of the world. Water purification systems can be extremely expensive, however, our look at water purifiers focuses on easy to install, easy to use and maintain and relatively affordable options.

 

Option One- Water from Air Systems

 

The priciest option on the list is the water from air system, also known as an atmospheric water generator or AWG. These systems extra moisture from the air, purify it and turn it into drinking water. This option can be a good fit for those living in areas with questionable water supplies or water supplies that have experienced problems in the past. There are several options on the market with some options featuring reverse osmosis and even UV sterilization.

Once purchased the per gallon cost is low, usually around just $0.20. If you are looking for a way to avoid ground water contaminants, fluoride, lead from old pipes and other water contamination issues, then a water from air system is definitely something worth considering.

What can make this option problematic to implement is that there are many options on the market, using many different, often patented, technologies. Some opt for ozone purification and others do not. That stated, an AWG has the sizeable benefit of always providing a consistent water source. The systems not only allow users to bypass heavy metals and fluoride but also viruses and bacteria as well. Atmospheric water generations can cost several thousand dollars.

 

Option Two – Countertop Water Purifiers

On the other end of the pricing spectrum is the vastly more affordable countertop water purifier. One of the best countertop water purifiers, priced around $100, is the New Wave Enviro 10 Stage Water Filter System. The unit is far from perfect, however, the price point, ease of use and quality of water help to make this unit a standout. Whereas, AWG units can cost $3,000 or more, the New Wave Enviro 10 can usually be found for under $100, but there are drawbacks to this approach. Countertop units means that you can see the unit. With some effort, the New Wave Enviro 10 can be mounted under the sink, as can other countertop units.

 

Another problem is that the New Wave Enviro 10 doesn’t always attach to the faucet with ease and filter replacement can be difficult, as filters are not easily labeled to indicate which direction is down and should interface with the main unit. With that fact stated, however, the unit is an overall winner due to its price and effectiveness.

 

While it will never win any beauty contest and the hose-faucet design can be cumbersome and probably even irritating, this low cost, high results solution is worth investigating. The ten stage filter can remove everything from heavy metals to bacteria, virus, pesticides, cancer causing chemicals and more. Best of all, no new plumbing is necessary, and the unit can filter about 1,500 gallons of water annually depending on the level of contamination in your water. However, it is very important to note that this unit will not filter out fluoride.

 

Option 3 – Berkey Water Filters

Another, slightly more expensive, bulkier and more cumbersome water purification option is the Big Berkey Water Filter System. The Big Berkey usually costs around $300, is a little on the large side and sits on top of the counter. Water is poured into the top of the stainless-steel unit, is purified slowly and then comes out of a spout at the bottom.

 

While the Berkey units aren’t super streamlined or easy to use, they have undergone considerable testing, and the results have been good. Also, if you are looking to remove fluoride from your water, then you’ll want to consider this option.

 

Berkey water filters have been shown to remove VOCs, heavy metals, chemicals, pesticides and more. The units are portable and can be taken on camping trips which helps add to their value. Units can produce several gallons per day and provide hundreds of gallons before filters must be replaced.

 

These three options vary in price and approach. Ultimately, where water is concerned, one of the most important steps one can take is to test one’s water and the water purification system that you choose.

When it comes to water, it is essential to think about more than just taste. Some harmful elements are completely tasteless and odorless. Also just because your water has never made you sick in the past doesn’t mean that it couldn’t potentially have long term consequences. The best approach is to stay proactive and make sure your family’s water supply is protected.

What are the Top Air Purifiers on the Market and Why Do You Need Them?
Posted by September 02, 2017 at 2:55 PM under Environment Home Living Tips

 

The indoor air of the typical home is polluted. But just how polluted is a given home’s indoor air quality?  It all depends on factors, such as the home’s location and how it was built. Living close to a busy street or highway can translate to air quality issues. Likewise, living in close proximity to factories can also present significant air quality problems.

 

Many people believe that outdoor air quality in cities is mostly due to road traffic, but this is not always the case. Recently, residents of what many felt was one of the world’s “greenest cities,” Portland, Oregon discovered that the city had substantial air quality issues. A unique program that analyzed moss in the city discovered that there were oddly high levels of dangerous heavy metals such as lead and cadmium.

Residents were confused as you might imagine, and eventually it was discovered that two glass making facilities both located in the heart of city were pumping out large levels of toxic heavy metals. As you can see, you truly never can take your neighborhood’s air quality for granted.

 

The issue is still not completely resolved, and the story of Portland’s recent air quality woes serves to underscore the tremendous importance of cleaning one’s indoor air. One of the single best ways to protect your indoor air quality is to have an air purifier in your home.

 

Air Pollution Has Many Sources

 

Outdoor air quality is clearly a problem when it comes to maintaining indoor air quality, but it is far from the only problem. Two other factors are contributing to poor indoor air quality. The first is the building materials used in construction.

Building materials are often made with or impregnated with a range of chemicals. These chemicals are constantly degassing and in the process degrading indoor air quality. However, it isn’t just your home’s insulation, drywall, glues and adhesives and other materials that contribute to poor air quality. Household furniture, such as couches and chairs, are often made using a complex mixture of chemicals. Indoor air pollution when combined with outdoor air pollution serve to create a powerful one-two punch. The bottom line is that most homes need indoor air quality help.

 

Let’s take a look at some of the best air purifiers on the market.

 

IQAir

IQAir is tough to beat in the air purifier space. Constructed in Switzerland, these air purifiers use multiple stages and truly do achieve impressive results. No doubt IQAir, air purifiers tend to be more expensive than other options but they also deliver outstanding results.

 

During the 2003 SARS outbreak in Hong Kong, IQAir units were installed in hospitals and many believe they played a role in slowing down or even stopping the outbreak. Medical authorities in Hong Kong did not make their choice lightly as they first tested many different systems before ultimately opting for IQAir. In the end, IQAir systems were installed in 150 hospitals and other health care facilities throughout Hong Kong.

 

The American Lung Association has also partnered with IQAir as part of an educational campaign and in 2008, the U.S. Olympic Committee teamed with IQAir to provide clean air at the Beijing games. Part of the IQAir “magic” resides in the company’s use of HyperHEPA fiters.

 

HyperHEPA filters can capture virus and bacteria as well as other particles. The HyperHEPA filters used by IQAir allow for extremely small particles to be captures. The simple fact is that IQAir, air purifiers work and they even have a whole house version that can clean the air moving through a home’s HVAC system. However, IQAir units and their replacement filters are expensive. Yet, that stated, there is no arguing with IQAir’s impressive track record and proven results. If you are interested in seriously upgrading your indoor air quality, you’ll want to check out IQAir.

 

Wynd

On the other end of the cost spectrum is Wynd. Wynd sounds a little like science fiction. Wynd is a portable air purifier that is only about the size of a moderately sized flashlight that actually works. While it looks too small to yield results, the Wynd portable air purifier does a fine job cleaning a small area. For those living in small apartments or looking for a way to purifier the air in their car, bedroom or any other small area the Wynd has a lot to offer. The Wynd also features low cost filter replacements averaging around $10 and units costs a fraction of both IQAir and Molekule units.

 

Molekule

No doubt about it, the Molekule, air purifier uses some pretty advanced technology. Over 20 years of research and development went into the creation of the Molekule, and all this hard work definitely shows. The Molekule doesn’t capture viruses, bacteria, mold and pollutants like the other two air purifiers on our list. Instead, the Molekule literally destroys them, literally! This isn’t a marketing slogan.

 

The nanoparticle-coated filter dissembles and converts pollutants into harmless elements. The end result are molecules that are safe to breathe instead of potentially harmful ones. In terms of pricing, the Molekule is comparable to the most basic IQAir model and the replacement filters are cheaper as well. To date, there has been nothing on the market like Molekule. In fact, Molekule might be our first look at the future of air purifiers.

 

Reclaim Your Healthy Air

In today’s world, if you have the budget available to buy an air purifier, you should. Even if you aren’t tackling outside air conditions like pollution from factories, highways or natural occurrences like forest fires, there are still toxic issues from indoor items like degassing new furniture or cigarette smoke. All of these can have a negative impact on your health and the health of your family.

 

All three of the air purifiers featured in this article have their respective benefits. Diet, exercise and even water filtering receive great attention, but often overlooked in the process is purifying one’s indoor air. Improving your indoor air quality is one of the most important steps you can take towards safeguarding your health.

The Health, Energy and Money Saving Benefits of an HRV
Posted by August 10, 2017 at 3:31 PM under Home Living Tips

An HRV, or a heat recovery ventilator, is a home add-on that may be new for many people. When it comes to HVAC systems, most only are familiar with the common options like air conditioners, furnaces and heat pumps. However, the benefits of having an HRV in your home can be tremendous. Whether you are concerned with indoor air quality, saving energy or lowering your carbon footprint, an HRV could be exactly what you need.

 

How Does It Work?

Heat Recovery Ventilators (HRV) is designed to accomplish two main functions. The first is to assist with energy recovery and the second is to act as an air exchanger. An HRV can be connected to an existing HVAC system or built as a standalone unit.

 

Many homeowners find that HRVs work very well in spaces such as converted attics and other tight spaces, which may not be properly ventilated. HRVs are thus designed to either be connected directly to a HVAC system or can be installed completely independent from a home’s HVAC system.

 

A cross plate heat exchanger works to recover some of the heat that passes through the device. When combined with the HRV’s overall low energy requirement, there can be significant heating cost savings. The HRV also works to cycle in fresh air while pumping out old potentially polluted air. The one-two punch that HRVs provide help to make it an increasingly interesting device for home owners.

 

HRV and Indoor Air Quality

Buildings are getting tighter and tighter every single year. As regulations require homes to be better insulated and homeowners want to save on energy, homes are becoming increasingly well sealed as a result. Insulation, weather stripping and building codes are all combining to improve home energy efficiency but often at a cost; this is where an HRV can be a valuable home improvement choice.

 

Tighter homes may be more energy efficient, but that efficiency often produces a considerable drop in indoor air quality. Indoor air quality is usually several times worse than outdoor air quality. In the past, the traditional leaky homes, while not as energy efficient as many of today’s homes, may have been drafty but that issue did allow for more natural air flow.

 

One of the key benefits of an HRV is that can help bring fresh air from outdoors into the home and pump out polluted air. Of course, that isn’t the entire picture. HRVs use filters, such as HEPA filters, to clean the outdoor air that is being brought into the house before it is circulated throughout the home. Without this feature, HRVs would essentially just be pulling in outdoor air.

 

The Radon Factor

The fact of the matter is that HRVs can do more than provide cleaner air in tighter homes. As an HRV is venting indoor air, it is also possible for HRVs to help reduce radon levels. Radon is a colorless, odorless noble gas that has been linked to diseases like cancer when exposure lasts for a long duration.

 

Of course, this is not to state that an HRV should always be used as a replacement for a radon remediation system when warranted; however, an HRV can be a valuable tool for helping to reduce radon levels since indoor air is constantly removed from the home and fresh air is pumped in.

Improving indoor air quality can have a range of health benefits. When selecting an HRV it is prudent to look for one that incorporates a HEPA filter.

 

HEPA filters remove more than particulate matter as they also trap bacteria and even viruses. Improving your indoor air quality can lead to fewer colds, flus and potentially other illnesses. Recent studies have shown that there may be a link between Alzheimer’s and poor air quality. Other studies have linked air pollution and lower I.Q.s. If you start to connect the dots it quickly becomes obvious that we should do all that we can to ensure that our families enjoy the best air quality possible.

 

HRV and Energy Savings

 

HRVs can save homeowners a great deal of money, especially in cold climates. If you live in a climate that is cold for a large percentage of the year then an HRV may very well be a device worth considering. Since HRVs recover a considerable percentage of the heat that passes through them those living in cold climates may see a marked drop in heating costs. Additionally, many HRVs are designed to consume very little energy.

 

There are models that use as little operational energy as a 40-watt light bulb. The cost savings an HRV represents when factored over the lifetime of a home can be considerable, especially in colder climates.

 

Additional Benefits and Features

HRVs can also be used to control humidity, thus helping to reduce the chances of developing mold. Many HRV units come with a variety of features such as an air circulation mode that strictly takes advantage of the HRV’s ability to purify air and a high-power mode that increases the amount of air being circulated from outside.

 

Operating an HRV isn’t a “set-it-and-forget-it” situation. Filters have to be changed and cleaned and a moderate degree of annual maintenance is required. It is important to remember that an HRV brings in potentially polluted air and cleans it. For this reason, filters may become dirtier quicker than expected. How long filters last partially depends on the pollution in the home’s area. That stated, HRVs do have great value, especially for homeowners in colder climates and for those living in well insulated homes. Homeowners with converted attics that receive poor air circulation should consider an HRV for the reasons outlined in this article.

 

One argument against HRVs is the price and there is no doubt that a good unit can be pricey. However, for those who put a premium on their indoor air quality or those living in very well insulated homes, an HRV could be seen as a welcome addition to one’s home.

7 Creative Crafts to Do with Clothespins
Posted by May 26, 2017 at 1:27 PM under Clotheslines and Laundry Home Living Tips

It probably shouldn’t surprise you that our team at Urban Clotheslines are pretty fond of the clothespins. You might not have given the humble and unassuming clothespin much thought lately and for good reason; after all, your average run-of-the-mill clothespin might not seem too exciting because it reminds you of doing your laundry. But as it turns out these common household objects can be an excellent starting point for a wide range of exciting crafts.

 

Since clothespins are such a blank slate, but a functional blank slate, it is possible to take the simple clothespin and infuse it with a great deal of artistry and creativity. When it comes to creating great ideas with clothespins, there is no shortage of great ideas. In our fun and festive clothespin article, we are going to explore the 7 top crafts that you can do with clothespins. These crafts are easy, fun and truly are great for kids of all ages. Perhaps, best of all is the fact that clothespins are remarkably inexpensive. This helps make clothespin crafts both a winner for decorating as well as for planning fun art projects.

 

#1-Characters and Clothespins

Clothespins can be an excellent foundation for kid’s art projects. One reoccurring kids’ clothespin craft project is to create clothespin art work featuring favorite cartoon characters. A good example of a fun clothespin craft for kids can be found over at Glue Stick & Gumdrops.

 

At Glue Stick & Gumdrops, you’ll find everything you need to create our own very fun Minions clothespin art project. Parents will love the straightforward instructions which are easy enough for almost any child to follow with ease. With just a handful of clothespins, a little paint, glue and a googly eye, you are ready to make some truly fun and eye-catching art! Who would have thought you can make a Minion out of a clothespin?

 

# 2-Clothespins and Christmas Tree Ornaments?

Everyone is always trying to think of how to make their home look festival come December. From the “why didn’t I think of that department” comes an inventive idea for beautiful and inexpensive Christmas tree ornaments. Using just a few clothespins, it is possible to create some magical, rustic and charming tree ornaments. HGTV has easy to follow instructions for how to quickly build some wonderful looking new ornaments for your Christmas tree or just to decorate your house during the wintertime.

 

These versatile ornaments look like a snowflake when finished, meaning that they are highly versatile and can be used as a general, all-purpose holiday and winter decoration. Click here to get the easy to understand, step-by-step instructions of building your own clothespin Christmas tree snowflake ornaments.

 

# 3-The Dragonfly

Whether you are looking for a creative way to decorate your home or want an easy craft for kids, you just can’t go wrong with the “Delightful Dragonfly” clothespin project. You’ve probably never thought of making dragonflies from clothespins, but you’ll love the results.

 

With just a few items such as a pipe cleaner, scissors, googly eyes and paint, you can make your own festive dragonflies. Imagine decorating your wall with a sea of beautiful, differently colored and designed butterflies. This project is a great way to spend an afternoon and your end result, a gorgeous sea of insects, can really transform a room!

 

# 4-Let’s Put Some Heart into It!

If you are looking for a way to add a little warmth to your home, then clothespins can ride to the rescue. Now you might be thinking, “how can a bunch some clothespins make my home warmer and homier?” Thanks to the Clothespin Heart Wreath, you can add some instant warmth.

 

The simple but charming design for the Clothespin Heart Wreath can be completed in just minutes. All you need are some clothespins, a wire hanger and a small chalkboard to use as a sign. Like most of the other projects on our list, the Clothespin Heart Wreath is a great choice for kids of all ages.

 

# 5-The Snowman Clothespin

A perfect match for the clothespin Christmas tree snowflake ornament is the very cute Snowman Clothespin. Kids will truly adore this clothespin craft. It’s another inexpensive way to decorate your tree and you could even make them for gifts for friends and relatives to spread the festive clothespin joy!

 

Parents seeking a way to keep their children busy on those long winter days indoors or anyone looking for a unique holiday decorating idea will truly love this stellar option. Click here to see the easy to follow plan, so you too can build you own Snowman Clothespins!

 

#6-Hungry Fish to the Rescue

Do you have a wall that is crying out for a little extra attention? The Hungry Fish Clothespin craft from Crafts by Amanda can help you quickly and easily transform you room. Everything you need to create your own Hungry Fish Clothespin wall decorations can be found at this link.

 
#7-Dinosaur Clothespin Craft

 

Also from Crafts by Amanda is the very fun and timeless Dinosaur Clothespin craft. There are easy to follow plans for 4 different clothespin dinosaurs: Triceratops, Velociraptor, Brachiosaurus and Tyrannosaurus Rex.

Perhaps the greatest thing about this craft is that the directions are very easy to follow but the results are quite impressive. Thanks to this craft, you’ll probably never look at clothespins the same way again.

 

Clothespins are pretty neutral and easy to find, and that means that they are something of a blank slate for your creativity. If you are looking for a cheap and versatile canvas to express yourself, then you’ll want to check out these 7 wonderful clothespin crafts.

 

Equipped with just a few dollars of supplies, it is possible to transform an entire wall or room and create an amazing collection of winter and holiday decorations. No matter your age, you’ll find these festive clothespin craft ideas to be a fun way to add some color and life to your space!

Top 5 Ways to Spend Less Time Cleaning
Posted by April 16, 2017 at 6:57 PM under Home Living Tips

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Cleaning is something that most people want to spend as little time as possible doing. Of course, there are some people who truly do enjoy it. But that is certainly not the majority. Regardless of how you feel about it, less time cleaning does, of course, translate into more time spent living life. The bottom line is that with a little planning, you can make cleaning less time consuming. That way you can get out there and do what you want with your free time!

 

Tip #1 for Spending Less Time Cleaning – Hire a Cleaning Service

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Hiring a cleaning service is definitely not for everyone. Some people just aren’t comfortable having a stranger or strangers literally digging through their trash.

The cost of hiring a cleaning service is also no small issue. Cleaning services do vary greatly in price, which means that with some research you might be able to find a cleaning service that works for your budget.

Like with most consumer goods and services, it can really pay to do a little price shopping. There are many independent cleaning services that are, in fact, run by individuals or mom and pop operations, which means that there are cleaning services that will be quite flexible regarding what they charge.

There is no way around the fact that if you want to spend less time cleaning then you might just want to hire a professional. If you hate cleaning, then it might just be worth the money to outsource your cleaning duties to someone else.

 

Tip #2 for Spending Less Time Cleaning – The Robot Vacuum Option

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Our sci-fi future full of robotic cleaning robots may not be here quite yet, but that doesn’t mean that we don’t have some options. Robot vacuums do work, and some models are better than others. The one example most people think of is the Roomba robot vacuum.

Much like hiring a cleaning service, robot vacuums, especially good ones that actually work, are not exactly cheap. However, once you opt for a robotic vacuum, the simple fact is that you will have one less cleaning duty on your list.

Robot vacuum cleaners are definitely not without their flaws and you do have empty them. But they can also be a good fit for people and certain types of homes. People with younger children and pets might want to proceed with caution before jumping on the robot vacuum train, as they may have trouble dealing with tougher, more substantial messes!

 

Tip #3 for Spending Less Time Cleaning – Get Organized, Really Organized

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A lot of the cleaning that the average person performs is actually the result of a lack of organization. A classic example of this fact is not properly disposing of worn clothing. Dirty clothing tossed about your house doesn’t just make your home looking messy, but it also creates another cleaning challenge and chore. If you stop and take a good look at what needs to be cleaned around your house, you will probably discover that many of your cleaning chores could be eliminated or at least somewhat reduced by adopting a more proactive organizational strategy.

 

Every room and area of your home can benefit from an increase in organization. Whether it is your kitchen, your home office, your bedroom or your garage there are organizational opportunities. Additionally, the more organized your home is the quicker and easier it is to clean. For example, not having to pick up lots of clothing off the floor makes vacuum, mopping or sweeping a great deal easier, regardless of whether or not you have a fancy robot vacuum cleaner.

 

Tip #4 for Spending Less Time Cleaning- The Team Effort

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Whether you have a significant other or live with roommates, splitting cleaning duties can dramatically reduce the time it takes to clean a space. Quite often the dividing of household chores can be a problematic area, as some significant others or roommates are not willing to pull their share; however, this doesn’t mean you should give up and not try to convenience the people you live with to do their respective share of the cleaning. Every situation and relationship is different.

Discovering what will motivate someone you live with to share in the cleaning duties may not be easy but if you can establish a new cleaning system, you will receive dividends for years to come. Leading by example is a great place to begin convincing others to pull their “cleaning weight.”

 

Tip #5 for Spending Less Time Cleaning – Turn Your Dishwasher Into a Super Cleaner

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You can’t stick everything in the dishwasher but many difficult to clean items can be placed in the dishwasher for cleaning. This trick must be used on a case-by-case basis, but there is no doubt that everything from brushes to pet food bowls can be cleaned in your dishwasher. As long as the item in question isn’t toxic in nature, your dishwasher might be a true time saving cleaning tool!

Similarly, some toys and unusual items can be placed in your laundry machine. Legos are a perfect example of a toy that can be cleaned in this fast and efficient way.

 

Don’t Overdo the Cleaning

kitchen-2174577_960_720Perhaps, the simplest way to spend less time cleaning is to not overdo the cleaning. One area of the home where many people often over clean is the floor. Bathroom floors do need to be cleaned frequently, but hardwood floors are a different story.

Vacuuming hardwood floors usually is enough to keep them reasonably clean. Mopping hardwood floors is time consuming and often unnecessary. Take the time to really think about what you’re spending your time on and ask around to see what your friends and relatives do. You may find the you have some misconceptions.

By following these tips, you will clean less and enjoy more free time. A combination of robotic tools, organization and a new approach can help you reduce your cleaning time substantially. Don’t be afraid to experiment to find new ways to reduce your cleaning time. In the long run, you’ll be glad you did!

 

 

5 Amazing Tips to Get Kids Involved in the Laundry Process
Posted by February 18, 2017 at 4:37 PM under Clotheslines and Laundry Home Living Tips

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Wouldn’t it be great, really great, if you could get your kids involved in the laundry process? If you handle the laundry in your house, then you already know that the laundry can be a very big and never ending job. Like cleaning itself there are always more dirty clothes. And needless to say, if you have children you have even more laundry to conquer each week.

 

While you can cut corners, you can’t cut every corner. At the end of the day, the laundry has to get done. Finding a way to get your kids involved in the laundry process is essential if you want to keep your laundry time from consuming all of your free time!

 

Let’s dive in and explore some tips for how you can get your kids to lend a hand with laundry time. Luckily, there is a lot about laundry that can seem fun and intriguing to little ones if you just use a little strategy and present it the right way.

 

Tip One-Older Kids Can Do Their Own Laundry

Maybe the single easiest and fastest way to reduce your laundry load is to have your kids do their own laundry. Sounds great, right? Washers and dryers may be a little more sophisticated and complicated than they were a decade or two ago, but that doesn’t mean that your kids can’t lend a hand. Even getting your older children and teens to do their own laundry once a month would give you a well-deserved break!

 

Now, you might be thinking that this idea sounds impractical and maybe even impossible, but with older children and teens there is no reason that they can’t handle this responsibility. And if they are planning to go off to college in a year or two or three, this is something they are going to need to know how to do for themselves anyhow. You’re teaching them valuable life skills while you get a break. It’s a major win-win.

 

The time you invest in teaching your kids how to do laundry will be time well-spent. Just be sure that you stay consistent with your demand that they pitch in and help with laundry duties.

 

Tip Two-Make it a Game

A major hurtle in tackling laundry is an efficient manner is collecting the laundry. Having kids means that more than toys are often spread across the house. Is your home full of laundry scattered all about the house? You might not be able to get your children to handle their own laundry (and of course this isn’t really even an option for younger children), but that doesn’t mean that you can’t get your kids to pitch in and keep their own laundry organized.

 

Each child should have his or her own laundry basket, preferably in his or her own room. In this way, laundry is kept organized and separated. If you have more than one kid, you can even gamify the process of laundry collection. Who can hang the laundry on the clothesline the fastest?  Who can collect and fold the most laundry of a certain color? Who can gather and put all their socks in their drawer the quickest? You get the idea. Kids love games, and they often love competition with their siblings.

 

Tip Three-Emphasize the Benefits of Helping You

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Simply barking orders at children often doesn’t achieve the desired results. While it may sometimes be hard to believe sometimes, kids can use logic just as well as adults, when they want to at least. Keep this fact in mind when trying to enlist your children in the laundry process.

 

Point out to your kids that the time you spend doing laundry could be spent doing something else, such as playing with them, taking them somewhere they want to go, cooking something delicious, or helping them out in some other way.

 

Show them how the small amount of time they invest in helping you with the laundry will benefit them later in some way or another. Just a simple statement like, “Let’s see how quickly we can get this laundry done, and then we’ll all go to the kitchen to bake cookies” can be motivating enough to get them to pitch in and help.

 

Tip Four-Make Laundry Time, Family Fun Time

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Yes, laundry isn’t usually fun. But with a little effort laundry time can actually be exciting, especially for younger children. When you approach the task with some joy and zest, they will mirror your attitude.

 

Children can help you sort and fold washed clothing, for example. During your laundry time together, you can do things such as play their favorite music or have a television show on in the background that they enjoy. Maybe make up a song about doing laundry that you can sing while you work.

 

Tip Five-Let Kids Personalize the Laundry Process

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Kids, especially younger kids, like to personalize not just objects, but also routines that they do. Try letting your children personalize everything from their clothing hampers to the laundry basket and even their clothing storage areas and dressers. If you decorate their belongings, they will have even more love for using them.

 

Check out this post for “15 Ideas for Stressed Out Moms” including some ideas how you can decorate laundry baskets as a family DIY project.

 

 

Chores Really Do Matter

If you can get kids into the idea of helping you do laundry at a young age, then it becomes a standard part of home life. No doubt it is important for children to focus on learning, studying and growing, but it is also important for children to learn how to take care of themselves in both large and small ways.

 

Learning how to do laundry and participating in the process may not see like a “huge deal,” but at the end of the day consistently helping you with laundry will help your child grow and develop. Doing the laundry can be fun for children with the right approach. You, as the parent, can make that process a fun and even interesting one for children.

 

Increasingly, experts are pointing to the importance of giving children work around the house as a way to foster their development. Don’t be afraid to encourage your children to help you not just with the laundry, but with other household activities as well. It just takes some creativity. In the end, you’ll be glad that you did.

 

 

17 Best Kitchen Cleaning Tips for People Who Love Clean Kitchens!
Posted by January 03, 2017 at 1:56 PM under Environment Home Living Tips

 

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Most of us really love a clean kitchen, or at least the idea of having one. Doing the work to achieve that sparkling clean kitchen might be a different story however. But in many ways, it is not as tricky or time-consuming as you think.

 

Yes, you guessed it. In this article, we’ll explore some of the best ideas of cleaning your kitchen. We have specifically selected ideas that are easy to implement, are inexpensive, environmentally friendly and can even be fun to do.

 

Cleaning your kitchen shouldn’t be a massive burden and with these tips you’ll be able to get that amazing looking kitchen you want in record time!

 

Tip One- Pay Close Attention to Sponges, Towels and Rugs

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There are definitely health hazards lurking in your kitchen; this is not a myth. Three major health hazards come in the form of kitchen sponges, kitchen towels and rugs.

 

Kitchen towels and rugs are easy health hazards to neutralize. Simply toss your kitchen towels and rugs into the wash and you’ve taken care of the problem. Kitchen towels should be changed every couple of days or more often depending on use.

 

Kitchen rugs can get very contaminated. Think about all the various things that can drip onto your rug and then imagine those drops festering away for weeks or even months. Yes, it’s pretty gross when you stop to imagine what bacteria your kitchen rug could be harboring. Washing your kitchen rugs at least every two weeks, or after a major spill, is probably a good idea.

 

Kitchen sponges are a little trickier. They come into contact with food constantly and you use them to make your dishes cleaner, so you certainly don’t want to be rubbing grime and germs onto your “clean” dishes.

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Consider replacing kitchen sponges every week and be sure to wash them after every use. Also, consider disinfecting kitchen sponges by soaking them in a plastic container with hydrogen peroxide and rinse very thoroughly afterwards. However, the easiest, and likely safest, way to deal with your kitchen sponge is to simply replace it often or opt for a washable kitchen towel instead.

 

Tip Two- Avoid the Hidden Health Hazard of the Dish Rack

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Just as it is vital to wash such items as your kitchen towels, kitchen rugs and sponges, the same holds true for your dish rack. Dish racks don’t magically stay clean. The fact that they are in the kitchen near food preparation areas means that they can become contaminated. Like your sponges, the idea of the dish rack is to help you with your clean dishes, so contaminating them is the last thing you want to do. The bottom line is don’t forget about the special cleaning needs of your dish rack.

If you have a stainless steel dish rack, that can be great for improving the visual appearance of your kitchen and matching stainless steel appliances. However, be particularly careful that it doesn’t accumulate rust. A bamboo dish rack is also recommended as bamboo is more resistant to bacteria.

It is smart to clean your dish rack just as you would any other kitchen surface area. You can use soap and water or maybe even throw it into the dishwasher, depending on the type of dish rack you have.

Photo credit: Amazon

Tip Three-Skip Your Oven’s Cleaning Mode

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Your oven’s cleaning mode can be rather problematic. The problem is that the oven clean mode works at a very high temperature and can release a lot of compounds into the air at the same time. In turn this will pollute your air and make it difficult to even breathe in your kitchen.

 

Instead of using the oven cleaning mode regularly clean your oven with baking soda. Baking soda is safe and will cause no serious indoor air quality issues. Mix some water with a modest amount of baking soda and dish liquid, scrub your oven and let the mixture sit on the oven’s interior for a few minutes. Then scrub again and wipe clean with water. Finally, collect all debris and let your oven dry before using.

 

Tip Four-Remove Cooktop Stains

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Cooktop stains can be very determined to resist your cleaning attempts. This makes sense as cooktop stains are quite literally baked on.

 

Removing cooktop stains can be as easy as using a mixture of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide. Just remember that hydrogen peroxide can be dangerous so keep it away from children and away from your eyes. Before using your cooktop, wipe down the area with water and dry.

 

Tip Five-Ammonia for Grease on Stove Grates

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Cleaning stove grates can be time consuming and laborious, however, there is a trick. Ammonia can literally soak the grease right off of your stove grates. Check out this clever approach for cleaning your stove grates.

Photo credit: The V Spot

 

Tip Six-Don’t Let Burnt Pan Bottoms Get You Down

 

Burnt pan bottoms might seem like a fact of life. Bar Keepers Friend is a great product for shining up the burnt bottoms of pans. In fact, you’ll likely be surprised by how well this product works!

 

Tip Seven-Polishing Your Sink the Easily and Inexpensively

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Want to have a clean sink but don’t feel like spending money on specialty cleaners? One of the easiest, and cheapest ways, to clean your sink is to use flour.

 

If you have a stainless-steel sink and you want it to look great, then use flour. Click here to check out this great Lifehacker article on how to use good old-fashioned flour to clean your sink.

Photo credit: Lifehacker

Tip Eight-Cleaning Wood Cabinets

 

Kitchen wood cabinets can get surprisingly dirty, which is not too surprising considering that they are, after all, in the kitchen. Murphy Oil Soap has been around for generations for one simple reason: it works. Murphy Oil Soap can be used to clean everything from wood cabinets to flooring.

 

Tip Nine-Mineral Oil for Kitchen Counters

 

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Mineral oil can be a good way to wipe kitchen oil off of your counters. Yes, it is counterintuitive to use oil to remove oil, but forget the irony and give it a try! Mineral oil is generally safe to use and definitely works.

 

Grease and oil on countertops can be a real nuisance, so you really do need a secret weapon. Here is a link to an article about this at One Good Thing if you want to learn more.

Photo credit: One Good Thing by Jillee

 

Tip Ten-Keep Drawers Clean with Liners

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Many people only worry about keeping drawers organized, but keeping them clean is also important. One inexpensive solution is to opt for drawer liners. We recommend cork in particular for this job.

 

Cork is naturally water resistant and bacteria resistant. Plus, once you have cork, or other drawer liners, you can periodically remove and wipe them down.

Photo credit: Williams and Sonoma

 

Tip Eleven-Cleaning Your Stainless Steel Appliances with an Oldie but Goodie

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Vinegar is something of a cleaning superstar. A mixture of vinegar and oil can be extremely effective at cleaning stainless steel fridges, dishwashers and toasters. You can use mineral oil or even olive oil!

It is an easy process that really works, and you can learn more about how at the Kitchn it by clicking here.

Photo credit: The Kitchn

Tip Twelve-Don’t Forget to Clean the Inside of Your Refrigerator

 

When people clean the inside of their refrigerators they often overlook the removable parts. Yet, the removable areas inside of your fridge are often the dirtiest parts. Instead of just wiping these areas down, consider removing them and cleaning them thoroughly with soap and water. If you’ve ever noticed that your fridge smelled even after you removed all the old food, it may be that your fridge surfaces need a deeper cleaning.

There is a great article about this at The Kitchn.

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Tip Thirteen-Remember that Old Food Can Be a Health Hazard

 

One of the single best safety habits you can have is to remove old food from your house, whether it is in your cabinets or fridge. Maybe you heard the story recently of a grandmother in the U.K. who sent several members of her family to the emergency room after serving up some nice holiday cocoa…from the 1980s! It’s important to periodically toss out old food so that you don’t have a similar accident.

Photo credit: The Kitchn

Tip Fourteen-Clean Your Garbage Disposal

 

Garbage disposals can get very smelly. If you have a mystery odor in your kitchen that just won’t go away, then it might just be your garbage disposal.

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There are many ways to clean your garbage disposal without actually having to stick your hand down in one of the most dangerous places imaginable. Cleaning methods include using liquid soap while the garbage disposal is on and also just pouring baking soda and vinegar down there to do the job for you.

 

It is true that normally mixing baking soda and vinegar isn’t a good idea due to the tremendous fizzing action. But where your garbage disposal is concerned this is an exactly what you want! Head over to Crunchy Betty for a step-by-step guide.

Photo credit: Crunchy Betty

Tip Fifteen-Use Lemon and Salt for Your Wooden Cutting Boards

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Lemon and salt are a powerful cleaning combo. The two work together particularly well for cleaning wooden cutting boards. Wooden cutting boards can become very dirty and should be cleaned regularly with soap and water. In addition to cleaning them with soap and water, using a combination of salt and lemon can help cut grease and shine up your wooden cutting boards.

 

Tip Sixteen-Don’t Forget Your Garbage Can

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You might remember to clean the inside of your garbage can because it can get rather smelly, but what about the outside of your garbage can? The outside of your garbage can is periodically exposed to all kinds of contaminants ranging from spilt liquids to bits of food and more. You really don’t want to forget about this surface.

 

If you have young children, you can pretty much be sure that they are going to touch your garbage can. Remember to clean the outside of your garbage can along with other surfaces throughout your kitchen. Much like the dish rack, this part of your kitchen is typically overlooked. Plus, a bright shiny garbage can does wonders to improve the look of your kitchen.

The blog No Trash Can has a good article all about this topic.

Photo credit: No Trash Can

Tip Seventeen-Take Advantage of the Power of Simple Ingredients

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You probably noticed that in this article we focused a lot of our attention on cleaning ingredients that are eco-friendly and people safe as well. There are plenty of chemical based cleaners out there that work really well. But as a rule, you really shouldn’t bring anything into your kitchen that would be very harmful or even lethal if consumed.

 

Anything you put down the drain eventually makes it out into the oceans and eventually into the fish of the sea and the food chains. Your cleaning decisions most definitely matter, and they do impact the world.

 

If you want to use fewer chemicals and fossil fuel based products, then opting for cleaning products that you make yourself. And then make those products out of safe and inexpensive ingredients.

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Clean kitchen are healthier kitchens. A key part of observing proper food safety, so that your cocoa doesn’t send your family to the emergency room, is to think about ways to keep your kitchen cleaner.

 

A major part of having a clean kitchen is to not take anything for granted. Areas that you are sure are clean may be in need of some help. It is also vital to remember that most people don’t really need powerful chemical based cleaning agents.

Simple cleaning tools and ingredients, like the ones outlined in this article, should be more than enough for the majority of your kitchen cleaning needs. Soap, water, vinegar, mineral oil, baking soda and even olive oil can go a long way towards helping you achieve a much safer and healthier kitchen.

 

 

 

15 Top Laundry Tips Designed for Stressed Out Moms
Posted by January 02, 2017 at 3:56 PM under Home Living Tips

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Laundry is one of those things in life that many of us simply “do” and rarely think much about how to improve. That is part of the reason that this article is an important one for moms who are tackling this never-ending activity.

 

There may not be any escaping laundry, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t tips that can help you improve the results that you see from your laundry duties. If you’re a mom or a dad, then you already know that having children certainly makes the laundry process much more intimidating. Even the smallest items of toddler clothes add up to a lot of extra work.  This is especially true when you consider how fast your kids manage to do something that gets their clothes dirty all over again.

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The time you invest in making your laundry time more efficient is definitely time well spent. The fifteen tips and tricks outlined in this article are designed to help you improve your laundry results while at the same time infusing a little more life and fun into the laundry process.

 

Thinking that there isn’t much room for improving your old and tired laundry routine? Think again as we have fifteen awesome tips and tricks that will brighten up not just your clothing, but your laundry time as well! This article includes links to a bunch of great sites with interesting ideas as well as numerous tips that can help you transform your average laundry day experience.

 

It’s the start to a New Year, and the perfect time to get excited about laundry!

 

Tip One-Let’s Get Really Organized

 

One of the easiest ways to make laundry time a little more fun and less time consuming is to get organized; after all, do you really want to spend more time doing laundry?

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Organizing your laundry room makes everything you do a little easier and a little faster. Instead of lugging huge tubs of liquid fabric softener and detergent store those liquids in smaller, and easier to use, containers.

 

While this tip might not seem like a “big deal” you’ll be surprised how much time this tip saves you. Additionally, this tip will help keep your laundry area neater as you’ll reduce those irritating, and rather sticky, spills.

 

Tip Two-Liven Up Your Laundry with a Cute Laundry Hamper

 

Part of what makes doing laundry often seem like such a chore is that laundry isn’t just smelly, but it can be unpleasant to look at as well. Laundry hampers aren’t exactly known for being pretty, but there are some easy fixes for that.

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You could try making a laundry hamper out of your favorite pillowcase for your kid’s room. It’s the perfect decoration to hang on a closet. You’ll save money and can have a fun time personalizing your festive pillow case at the same time.

 

Check out the how-to over at Makezine.

(Photo credit: Makezine)

 

Tip Three-Don’t Let Your Laundry Overflow

 

Laundry scattered about causes a sense of disorganization. Overflowing laundry hampers are an eyesore and just add to the general unpleasantness we often associate with doing laundry.

 

So why not “go big” and have a huge laundry hamper? And you can make one that rarely overflows because it is the perfect size. Here is an interesting DIY laundry hamper project that is easy and inexpensive.

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Home Depot has a large laundry hamper project you’ll love. Best of all, this DIY laundry hamper is very inexpensive, meaning you can have several if you like! (Photo credit: Home Depot)

 

Tip Four-Make Your Own Laundry Soap

 

Like laundry itself, laundry soap doesn’t receive too much attention. Unless laundry soap causes a rash or smells weird, most of us never give laundry soap a second thought.

 

However, laundry soap can be packed with harmful chemicals and additives that are bad both for the planet and humans.

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There are many easy to make and eco-friendly laundry detergent recipes available on the Internet. One idea is to simply take bar soap, grate it and add washing soda, borax and essential oils.

 

Follow this link at Wellness Mama to find a how-to on making your own easy and cheap laundry soap. You’ll find that making your own laundry soap can be a fun activity that kids love! This tip should be in every mom’s “rainy day activity bucket!”

Photo credit: Wellness Mama

 

Tip Five-Replace Sheets with Eco-Friendly Dryer Balls

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While dryer sheets may make your clothing softer, they are a form of unregulated air pollution. In fact, they are bad for the planet, as they often use harmful chemicals. When it comes down to it, dryer sheets are an unnecessary expense.

 

So skip the sheets and instead opt for wool dryer balls. Dryer balls work rather well and will consistently fluff up your laundry! Studies also show that they can reduce your dryer time by up to 25% and, much like using clotheslines, that means you’ll cut down on your electricity usage. Plus dryer balls reduce static electricity and wrinkles as well.

This link at Memo will give you some ideas and inspirations for creating your own dryer balls.

Photo credit: Memo.

Tip Six-Cut Down on Dryer Noise

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A noisy dryer is a maddening thing. Every mom knows that there are times you have no choice but to put your shoes or your kid’s shoes in the dryer, which can be rather irritating to listen to. It often sounds like your dryer is about to explode!

 

One easy way around this is to buy a special dryer bag to cut down on the noise. These dryer bags are inexpensive and will serve to protect your other clothing.

Photo credit: Amazon

 

 

 

 

Tip Seven-Opt for an Eco-Friendly Clothesline

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It should come as no surprise that we firmly believe that clotheslines are a true winner when it comes to laundry tips.

They lower your carbon footprint, save you tons of money and have numerous other benefits, such as reducing the risk of a house fire. Our site has lots of clothesline ideas, tips and products.

Check out this page for a comprehensive refresher on why we love clotheslines so much.

 

 

Tip Eight-A Drying Shelf

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In addition to using a clothesline, consider using a drying shelf. A drying shelf allows you to dry your clothing flat and has many of the benefits of a clothesline.

 

When you are not using your drying shelf, you can simply slide it out of the way if you build it in the right away. Here is a free plan from Sawdust Girl for making your own pull out sweeter drying rack.

Photo credit: Sawdust Girl
Tip Nine-Laundry Pedestals

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An organized laundry room is one that feels calming and makes the whole experience of doing laundry a lot more pleasant. Messes anywhere in the house can be a source of stress, but there is something particularly irritating about messy laundry rooms.

 

A laundry pedestal is a nice way to get organized. It stores clothing and raises your machine off the ground. The only big problem with laundry pedestals is that they can be expensive, in fact, they are comically expensive considering what they really are.

 

So why not build your own and literally save hundreds of dollars? Click here for a great DIY pedestal plan.

Photo credit: Just a Girl Blog

Tip Ten-White Chalk and Stains

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Every mom knows just what a headache stains can be, and this is especially true for stains on kid’s clothing. Luckily, simply using white chalk can help remove some of the toughest stains. As a mother, we’re sure you have lots of chalk around so start putting it to good use.

 

Simply rub white chalk over grease stains before washing. The chalk absorbs the stain while in the wash, and the stain comes right out. Try this tip, you’ll love it!

 

Tip Eleven-Making Laundry Time Fun Time for Your Kids

 

Many hands can get a job done much quicker, so why not bring your kids into the laundry equation? The trick is to make laundry as fun as possible. Often children love sorting clothing and putting clothing in their rooms.

 

For younger children, this activity makes them feel more grown up. You will be surprised how eager your children are to help out.

 

Tip Twelve-Laundry Baskets in Your Closets

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Keeping dirty clothing out of sight is one way to take some of the sting out of laundry. Mom’s know that kids will literally leave dirty clothes almost anywhere and everywhere.

 

Hanging laundry baskets are an easy way to keep dirty clothing both out of sight and organized. If you want to see an example of a hanging laundry basket in action, then head over to this link.

Photo credit: Whorl

 

Tip Thirteen-The Solution for Dryers that Shrink Your Clothing

Dryers will shrink clothing; this is just an unfortunate fact of life. (Of course, this is yet another reason that you should strongly consider clotheslines!) But almost everyone has had the unpleasant experience of accidentally drying a much-loved article of clothing, only to find that it ends up way too tight and uncomfortable.

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However, there is a way to fix this problem. Try pouring baby shampoo and warm water into the sink, then let the items sit in the sink for a few minutes. The reason this tip works is that it helps the fibers in the clothing relax.

 

Next, squeeze the water out of a single article of clothing and lay that item on a towel. Roll up the towel, put the article of clothing on a dry towel and let it air dry. You’ll find that the clothing will often return to its original size once it has air dried.

 

Tip Fourteen-Dirty Toys in the Washer?

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The washer may seem like an odd place for toys, but for some toys it is the perfect solution. Just be sure to use only cold water. Never use hot water as it could damage toys or release chemicals from the toys.

 

Many toys that may seem like they can’t be washed, such as Legos, can be easily washed with the help of a laundry bag. Drop the toys in a laundry bag and add a little soap. Afterwards, allow the now clean toys to air dry.

 

Dirty toys don’t necessarily have to stay that way. Use this tip on a case by case basis and your kids’ toys will stay much cleaner.

 

Tip Fifteen-Make Small and Moderate Repairs to Your Laundry Room

 

Are you stuck in a “laundry dungeon?” You are not alone. Around the world moms find themselves stuck in laundry dungeons.

 

Due to the noise and mess, laundry rooms are often tucked away in unfinished, spider web riddled basements and even garages. Of course, this issue only adds to the overall unpleasantness of doing laundry.

 

One solution is to step back and evaluate your laundry room. Look for easy and inexpensive ways to boost the appeal of your laundry room. Filling in cracks, adding a coat of pain or considering a drop ceiling in unfinished basement areas are all excellent examples of how quick and easy upgrades can improve your basement.

 

Transform Your Laundry Experience

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Added together, these fifteen tips can truly transform your laundry experience. The idea that laundry has to be a painful experience is not an idea that moms should simply accept.

 

There is no time like the present for improving your laundry experience. Whether it is tackling the noise of laundry or getting your laundry space more organized, there are many ways to improve this part of your life.

 

 

Create Your Own Laundry List

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Consider writing down a list of all the things that bother you about doing laundry. Once you have your list in hand, look for ways to reduce the stress and irritation associated with doing laundry.

 

With a little planning, you’ll find that you can definitely transform your laundry experience. In the end, laundry will likely never be the highlight of your day, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t make laundry time a little less of a chore. Go ahead and free yourselves from the laundry dungeon and come into the light!