I love a clean house.

Merry Christmas readers!  Today was my first day of my "Winter Holiday" thanks to Mississippi State!  This is one of the biggest perks of my job - 2 weeks off of paid vacation at Christmas.  So thankful for the time off after a VERY busy fall semester.  I have so enjoyed being home... sleeping in, cleaning house, doing laundry, wrapping Christmas presents, running errands, and hanging out with the hubs and pup. While I was cleaning today, I thought I should share some recipes with you... however, they are not recipes that will make your tummy happy, but your wallet!

1.  About 2 years ago we started making our own laundry detergent. If you follow the blog, you know this isn't the first time I have raved about making your own detergent! It is amazing how much money you save. By making your own detergent, you end up spending roughly 3 cents a load.  I never realized how much laundry detergent cost until I started making my own.  There has been one time that I had to buy some at the store because we were out and didn't have the time to make some, and it was shocking to me how much I had been paying before and had never thought twice about it.  I have posted this on the blog before, but here is the recipe again in case you missed it!

Laundry Detergent
- 1 bar of soap (whatever kind you like, keeping in mind this is the scent your clothes will have)
- 1 box of washing soda (look for it in the laundry detergent aisle at the store - I bought the Arm & Hammer Washing Soda and found it at Kroger)
- 1 box of borax (i also found this in the laundry detergent aisle at Kroger.  The brand I bought was called 20 Mule Team)
- 5 gallon bucker with a lid
- 3 gallons of tap water

Step one:  Grab your cheese grater and grate the entire bar of soup into a bowl.  While grating, bring 4 cups of water to a boil in a small pot.  Stir the grated soap into the boiling water and continue to stir until the soap is completely dissolved. 

Step two:  Put 3 gallons of hot water into the 5 gallon bucket (the easiest way is to fill up a gallon milk jug 3 times).  Then stir in the hot soapy water from step one and add 1 cup of the washing soda.  Keep stirring for another minute or two, then add 1/2 cup of borax.  Stir for another couple of minutes, then cover and let the mixture sit overnight to cool.

Tada!  You are done. When you get up in the morning, you will have a bucket of gelatinous slime.  The consistency will be a mixture of watery gel.  I usually stir it again in the morning.  We use 1 cup of the detergent per load, sometimes a little more or less depending on the load size.  According to the website where we found this recipe, you should get about 48 loads of laundry.

2.  More recently we found a recipe for making our own countertop cleaner... and my first thoughts while using it was "Man, I feel like an idiot."  Why?  Because it works just as good as any that you buy at the store for fractions of the cost.  If you are like me, you are constantly wiping down the counters after cooking dinner, or making any kind of mess. I love a to cook but I also love a clean kitchen (and house for that matter).

All-purpose Cleaner
- 2 tablespoons vinegar
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon borax
- squirt of dish detergent
- hot water
- spray bottle 

Combine the vinegar, baking soda, and borax with a little bit of hot water in a spray bottle.  Swish around until the baking soda and borax have dissolved.  (Be very careful to not create a "volcano eruption" like you did in 4th grade science with these same ingredients!) Add a few squirts of dish detergent and fill the rest of the bottle with warm water, and you are good to go!

We've learned that by keeping a few items around the house, it is very easy to make your own homemade cleaning solutions.  If you have vinegar, borax, and baking soda, you are pretty much good to go.  I'm interested in trying out more recipes for cleaning solutions, so if you have any recommendations, please comment and share!


  1. Jill and I plan to make a lot of our own cleaners too. Glad to hear it works so well. We are going to try dry laundry detergent though because it's less to store at one time.

    Another recipe I have on hand is dishwasher detergent. Seems really easy:
    1 cup borax
    1 cup washing soda
    1/2 cup citric acid (takes away the cloudy look)
    1/2 cup kosher salt
    Fill rinse agent compartment with white vinegar.

  2. I've wanted to try the dry detergent. Let me know how you like it!