A New Year!

I’m sorry I’ve been so MIA, as you can imagine November/December was a very very busy month for us. As with my yearly new years resolution its always to go a little greener. The bane of my existence has been, despite my efforts to rid my home of toxic cleaners, they always seem to keep popping up in my home! I know that sounds a little silly but when you lived around the corner from your BJ Wholesale Club shopping happy in-laws who recently decided why live around the corner when they can just live with you… my home just keeps popping up with those toxic cleaners. Despite my plethora of non-toxic, environmentally friendly cleaners, I finally realized what the problem was. One, my in-laws just think GREEN is another one of my quirks and two, we don’t organize the same way. When you merge two households with different styles of organizing and cleaning – no one knows what the other has. I had cleaners in the laundry room, in the storage room, under the sink, in the bathroom, in the linen closet – EVERYWHERE! – except somewhere central. After days of cleaning my basement and laundry room I invested in two “commercial” grade chrome tiered shelves to organize all the cleaners from around the house. I placed all the toxic chemicals on the top top shelve, keeping them out of curious little climbing babies hands, non-toxic cleaners on the second shelve, safer items like toilet papers, tissues and paper towels on the the other shelves. I was so proud of myself and thoroughly enjoyed taking my mother in law, the only other cleaning lady in the house, for a tour of my newly organized shelves. Speaking on a level she could relate to, I explained to her how those toxic chemicals were no good for her precious grand-daughter and that we were going to slowly eliminate, use up what we have, why just throw it out and create double the waste, and switch to non-toxic, environmentally safe cleaners. I even offered to teach her which products to use in substitution as old habits die hard. I should know, Scrubbing Bubbles was once my addiction. I should also explain that she doesn’t speak/read english too well and her references to cleaning lies more along the lines of green bottle for bathroom, the blue water is for windows and mirrors, the bubble guys make metal shiny, the one with the duck tip is for toilets, the little plastic packets are for the dishwasher. I think in the end we understood eachother and were both quite shocked how much excess of cleaners we had. It seemed every week a new box of dishwasher detergent was coming home and being placed somewhere different. When collected I found 5 cases – in bulk! My mother in law said quite appropriately, “I guess we really didn’t RUN out.” So while it may be some time until we’re completely rid of toxins in our household, we’re on our way!