I hope you all had a great last weekend of July! Can you believe how quickly the summer is passing us by? My beautiful daughter is 2 months old today - I seriously cannot believe it! She is already growing and changing so much. I know it's so cliche' but it really seems like if you don't stop to enjoy life once in a while, it really will pass you by! That's why these monthly pictures are extra special to me.
Already 2 months, and such a big girl with her favorite toy, "Mr. Corn"
Well, I thought it would be a great idea to share some of the great DIY (do it yourself) posts that I've come across on the web which have saved me loads of money, were easy to complete and were too ingenious not to share. I have tested all of these myself and can personally attest to their awesomeness :). Although I am listing them here, please click on the original DIY link for the original, detailed tutorial on each respective blog.
DIY Bath & Body Works Wallflower Refills
DIY Follow-Thru Courtesy of Holy Crickey
If you have ever used those Wallflower plug-ins from B&BW, you know that they smell great and are super convenient. Unfortunately, these air fresheners have VOCs (volatile organic compounds) in them, which have been documented to cause a plethora of health conditions from infertility to memory loss. But if you want to still have a nice smelling house without all of the yucky chemicals, have no fear! Holy Crickey has created a tutorial to easily refill your wallflower plug-in with essential oils.
I did this a couple months ago with some orange EO and within a couple minutes of plugging it into an outlet in my kitchen, the room smelled like a basket full of delicious oranges! It lasted a while too. I have to be honest... when I would buy the wallflower refills from B&BW, I didn't always really smell anything coming out of them. I would have to unplug it from the wall and sniff it just to make sure it was working. Well... make no mistake about it - this method works like a charm!
DIY Liquid Dishwashing Detergent
DIY Follow-Thru Courtesy of Choosing Simplicity
Back in March (when my DIY kick went into full force - maybe it was an early form of nesting for me?), after tossing another empty bottle of dishwashing detergent in our recyclables container, I started getting really frustrated at how often we were buying the stuff and how much money it cost. Even more so, I was annoyed because it didn't really seem like it was getting the job done, considering we have hard water and the deposits kept building up on our plates and glassware.
Well, I can't even begin to tell you how happy I was to find Choosing Simplicity's DIY tutorial in how to make simple liquid dishwashing detergent. The ingredients are simple enough - Borax, Arm & Hammer Washing Soda [I found both very easily in the laundry detergent section of my local grocery store], Dr. Brenner's Pure Liquid Castille Soap in whatever fragrance you choose [interesting side note: the cheapest I've ever found this soap was actually at the Vitamin Shoppe, believe it or not. Much cheaper than any grocery store or health food store!] and water. I made this back in early March and I still have about 1/4 of it left (I put it in an old milk jug and it filled it up to the top - it's hard to get out if you don't cut the top off, though). This stuff works great - and although not formulated to take out hard water stains, I definitely notice significantly less hard water deposits on our dish and glassware.
This stuff seriously lasts forever! (and my handwriting isn't always that messy :) )
DIY Follow-Thru Courtesy of Fake-It Frugal
Anyone who has pets, kids or even the occasional burping husband knows how handy Febreeze can be in making a somewhat offputting-smelling house fresh again in no time flat. One thing I really don't like about febreeze? The price. Although it works great, it always seems like a pricy purchase just to make the house smell good (even though that's an important task!)
Thanks to Fake-It Frugal, however, you can make your own fabric refresher with fabric softener, baking softener and water! I used my favorite fabric softener - Gain's Island Fresh - and it works like a charm. I quadrupled the recipe so I could have some extra for refills later. I swear by it!
DIY Microfiber Furniture Cleaner
DIY Follow-Thru Courtesy of Chris and Robin's Nest
At the same back in March when my most recent DIY kick was at its peak, I noticed that our red microfiber sectional couch, which we bought back in 2009 barely used from a nice couple on Craigslist, had started to look incredibly dingy. Everything that I had tried in the past to get stains out of the couch (e.g., spilled soda, cat hairballs), including expensive name-brand cleaners that claim the ability to get any stain out, had done a really poor job in making my couch look like new. So I was really at my wit's end at this point - I figured, 'Rubbing alcohol and good old-fashioned elbow grease? Why not?'
Looking back, I am SO happy that I gave this tutorial by Chris and Robin's Nest a chance because it is singlehandedly responsible for breathing new life back into our couch! The tutorial has some great visuals, but I figured I'd add a couple additional pointers from my experience. Firstly, don't be shy with using a lot of rubbing alcohol. If you have some nasty stains, that's what will get them out. Secondly, employ the individual in your household with the best arm strength to do the job of scrubbing the couch, because that 'elbow grease' I mentioned is what really activates the rubbing alcohol to work in removing the stain. Thirdly, OPEN THE WINDOWS!!! Seriously... this stuff stinks a lot and it's not good to breathe it in while it's evaporating. It was still relatively cold out when I did this, so my roommates at the time weren't too happy when I stunk up the house with this stuff.
Well, I hope you enjoyed my post about my favorite cleaning DIY tutorials from around the web. Try them out - you won't be disappointed! Are there are any cleaning DIY tutorials that you swear by? Share them in the comments!