The Mess Hall

Rants and ramblings on all things edible, wearable, doable, or usable with a focus on Home and Health. Home is fun, easy on the wallet, and “gool” for the greatest game of tag ever (Life). Welcome to my home, the Mess Hall. Get in the Mess!

16 Apr

THE closet

Posted in Build or Fix, Healthy Home on 16.04.11 by Octopi

Everybody has one. THE closet. The scary one that all the ransom shit goes into but never comes out. It’s a big freaky monster and you know as you walk past it one day that monster is going to come alive, pull you in and slowly eat you over decades like that one thing in Star Wars.

This is our closet…

Don’t judge.  But hey, after a couple hours of hard-core organizing, a new shelving system and a MacGyver’d shelf in the laundry area (using some 1X4s and some leftover closet shelving), I’m pretty psyched about how easy it is to find everything and to be able to actually walk through/into the space!  Check it out….

So tis the season to get rid of stuff you don’t need and take a load off your house!  The Mess Hall already feels so much lighter.

:>)

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18 Aug

How Green Is Your Clean? Drain Unclogging Products

Posted in Green Your Clean, Healthy Living on 18.08.10 by Octopi

A couple years ago I started to ask myself, “How green is my clean?”  Every time I picked a household cleaner up I started to look at its contents and started to get scared at the “ingredient” list.  I’m putting THIS down the DRAIN?! I have THIS in my HOME?!

So I decided to do something about it.  No, I didn’t collect my arsenal of cleaning products and light them all up out in the alley or bury them in my neighbor’s yard.  But when it came time to go buy some more, I took some time to ask these questions:

  1. What is this for?
  2. Does this product seem bad to be around my household or put out into the environment?
  3. Is there something greener I already have that can do the same job?
  4. If not, what can I get to do the job?
  5. Will the new product be able to take care of other things?

 

I’m going to have a series focusing on particular products and alternatives.  First up: clog removers for drains.  The Dranos and Liquid-Plumrs of the world. 

  • What is this for?
    • Unclogging drains
  • Does this product seem bad to be around my household or put out into the environment?
    • Plenty of nasty chemicals in these types of products.  Warning labels like “Keep out of reach of children.” “Can cause burns on contact.” “Harmful if swallowed”
    • Verdict: Nasty for people and nasty for the environment
  • Is there something greener I already have that can do the same job?
    • Yes!! For preventative maintenance, use baking soda and white vinegar.  Dump some baking soda down the drain followed by just enough white vinegar to make all the baking soda fizz out.  Let it sit for 5-10 minutes while you’re boiling up some hot water in a tea kettle (or use the extra hot water from the kettle after you’ve made some coffee/tea in the morning).  Dump the boiling water down and good to go.  I try to do this every couple weeks.
    • Also, in the bathroom, you can use hair catchers to prevent stuff from going down the drain in the first place.  And a bent-out old metal hangar still does the trick when you have to go digging to unclog.
  • Will the new product be able to take care of other things?
    • Both baking soda and vinegar can be used to get rid of unpleasant odors
    • Vinegar can be used with water (equal parts) as a general cleaner.  It serves as a disinfectant.  Use the same “equal parts” vinegar/water combo to clean windows (wiping down with newspapers for streak-free clean).
    • Use vinegar and baking soda on lemon wedges to use as a scrubber for surfaces.

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