FREE! What a great word especially when we are referring to being “chemical-free.” The information is overwhelming when first presented with how many dangerous chemicals are in everyday cleaning products that we use. The thought of parting with a “close friend” is difficult. As a previous fan of Oxy-Clean, I could not believe that there were more natural alternatives for making my whites whiter or removing those pleasure driven, baseball base sliding stains from my son’s pants. Many people continue to use the cleaning products they do, not necessarily because they “love” them, but more so because there is a comfort level and a familiarity with them. Our mother’s mother used the products, our mothers used the products, and not wanting to end the legacy, we now use the products. The cleaners perform effectively and we know just how much to measure; we can do it with our eyes closed.
If you have a strong connection with bleach (it may be the fumes), a love affair with lemon-scented soft scrub, or enjoy spending the afternoon with your floral spraying aerosol can, then consider taking a vacation where the air is clear and the same cleaning pleasures and effectiveness can be obtained from using natural resources. There is no guarantee that you will enjoy cleaning any more than you already do, but there will be less toxic fumes and face masks are not required. A little mixing of natural ingredients, some clutter removal of unused and unnecessary items, and time-saving tips that help you enjoy healthier living are some of the subjects Ellen Sandbeck discusses in her book Organic Housekeeping.
A resourceful Web site for healthier living is Healthy Child, Healthy World. It was established by Jim and Nancy Chuda who lost their daughter Colette to an illness, which they believe was a result of exposure to toxins. The Web site promotes education on toxin reduction in the environment; in schools, the community, and a little closer - our homes. The organization continues its efforts in the recent release of the book Healthy Child Healthy World. It not only looks at the effects chemicals have on our health, but also addresses ways we can reduce, if not eliminate other toxins in our home with simple steps like removing our shoes when, if not before, entering our home. The book is an informative read and offers suggestions that are easy to implement in an already busy life.