In this economy people are watching their budgets.
Let’s examine how much an average family of 4 is likely to spend annually on drinking water:
$ 200 – Using a water filtration system.
$ 520 – Home water cooler delivery.
$ 528 – 2 Gallon Jugs
$ 1755 – Drinking 3 bottles of water a day at a cost of .40 per bottle, 4 person family.
There are many cost variations. Clearly the brand you buy, how much you pay per bottle, how many bottles you drink each day… all of these factors will impact your annual cost. Use this link figure out how much your family is actually spending, this link also provided me figures that I used for the above calculations.
If you rent don’t despair, there are many portable water filtration systems available in the marketplace.
In some ways it is less convenient to use stainless steel, you have to keep the bottles clean, round them up, fill them up… but I’ve never been a fan of lugging heavy flats of water!
An average family of 4 can save $1555 per year eliminating bottled water. Add the dollar savings to the environmental impact of bottling plants, trucking, refrigeration, not to mention disposing of billions of bottles a year and perhaps you will reconsider grabbing that next plastic bottle of water.
Requiring a neutral pH eliminates some of the more common natural cleaning ingredients, lemon at a pH of 2.4, vinegar at 2.8, & baking soda at 9.0.
I often use the PND All Purpose Cleaner on our granite counters and have yet to notice a problem, but it does contain vinegar – so not the best choice. A more delicate variety of granite may suffer over time.
6 cups of Water
1/3 cup + 1 tsp of Alcohol denatured or regular
1 Tbs of Castille Soap – I use almond
20 Drops of Essential Oil – I use citrus or almond
If you want a stronger anti fungal or antibacterial add:
1/3 cup + 1 tsp Tea Tree Oil
This recipe will fill two spray bottles ~ I make my cleaners in batches so I don’t have to make them as often.
If you choose to add Tea Tree Oil be sure to add at least 4% as called for in the recipe, any less and you could promote bacterial resistance. Additionally omit the essential oil. Tea tree oil has a strong eucalyptus scent that will overpower any other fragrance.
I make ours without the tea tree, the alcohol kills enough germs for my comfort level.
I found this on a recent internet prowl. It’s from Focus Organic and has great ideas for Halloween. Now that the school year is in full gear… Halloween is just around the corner!
I love Halloween, so it’s never too early to start getting ready to me! The following is an article by Lynn Colwell and Corey Colwell-Lipson, mother and daughter and co-authors of Celebrate Green! Creating Eco-Savvy Holidays, Celebrations and Traditions for the Whole Family, available at www.CelebrateGreen.net
Halloween should be fun, but every year it gets scarier–for parents and the planet. From the discovery of lead in fake teeth and candy, to chemicals in costumes, to the garbage left in the holiday’s wake, it’s a wonder more of us haven’t given up the festivities and spent October 31 watching It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.
The good news is, there are loads of child- and earth-friendly alternatives to the usual Halloween fare.
There are a ton of green cleaners on the market, but my favorite cleaners are the ones I make at home.
One thing you know for sure, when you make it – you know every ingredient.
You will also save a lot of money, the ingredients are so inexpensive, no wonder the companies that manufacture cleaning products have so much money to spend on advertising! It costs so little to make a batch – it’s crazy!
I make it in batches that make 4 28oz bottles.
13 1/4 cups of Water (1 hot)
1/4 Cup of Dr. Bronner’s Castile Liquid Soap– I like Citrus for the All Purpose Cleaner
1/4 Cup of Borax
1/4 Cup of Vinegar
Borax Free – The Vinegar & Baking Soda reaction is fun for kids!
NOTE – Cleaning with the following recipe requires rinsing. I’m working on a reformulation and will leave this posted with this caveat until I have a borax free option that doesn’t require rinsing.
10 1/4 cups of water (5 hot)
1/4 Cup of Dr. Bronner’s Castile Liquid Soap– I still like Citrus for the All Purpose Cleaner.
1 1/2 cups of Baking Soda
3 cups of Vinegar
Mix the hot water with the borax or baking soda until it disolves.
Once dissolved pour into a bucket – make sure that you have a bigger bucket – the next step will give you a little foaming action!
Add the remaining water, vinegar & Castille Soap.
Use a funnel to pour the solution into the four bottles.
I used to use the Method Products, so I have reused the spray bottles & taken the labels off. Using the handy label maker, made my own labels so I know what’s in each bottle and it looks organized.
There are rumblings about the safety of Borax and while it certainly appears to be a better option than the chemicals in commercial cleaners, there are people who would prefer to avoid it.
Click here to read what they say at Chemistry.com.
I have posed the question about Borax to the EWG. I’ll be curious to hear their response.