More Green For Less Green

Living more eco-friendly for less money

12.15.2008

Green Secret Santa



The Secret Santa exchange at work was green-themed and I had loads of fun with my gifts. We gave reusable produce bags from Etsy (AMK Designs http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=5692686) and then a homemade green cleaning kit than I made. I made everything in it, so I hoped the person who got it would appreciate it-- and they did. Yay! My husband got a tiny pine tree that we can grow indoors until we have yard to plant it in and I got a coupon for my artsy coworker to do a sketch of any 4x6 picture I give her- awesome! Here is what I put in the kit:

Unpaper Towels
Use these handmade extra-thick cloths for cleaning or as napkins. The small size is to encourage you to do one-use-and-wash, just like you'd use a paper towel one-use-and-toss.

Kitchen Cleaner
This castile cleaner is great for dealing with greasy stains (normally found in the kitchen) but it can be used anywhere in the house. I've added some tea tree oil which has antiseptic properties. The hot water melts the shaved castile soap in the dry mix, but you only need to add it once. Give the bottle a good shake before each use to remix everything. This mix will last indefinitely. The recipe on your bottle comes from the book Green Clean. Your bottle holds 1½ batches.



Bathroom Cleaner
Because of the vinegar content this blend is great for dealing with mildew normally found in the bathroom but it can be used anywhere in the house. I've added some tea tree oil which has antiseptic properties. The hot water initially added melts the shaved castile soap in the dry mix, but you only need to add it once. Give the bottle a good shake before each use to remix everything. This mix will last indefinitely. The recipe on your bottle comes from the book Green Clean. Your bottle holds 1½ batches.



Liquid Laundry/Dishwasher Detergent
Give the container a good shake before each use to remix everything. Use 1/4 cup per load in a traditional washing machine, 1/8 cup in a high efficiency. If you are especially brave, use 1/8 cup per load in the dishwasher. Put white vinegar in the rinse aid compartment. You can add two drops of essential oil to the soap cup along with the mix, and when it opens during washing it will fill your kitchen with the smell of the essential oil.



Hand-Milled Mint Lather Soap Ball
This soap ball uses unscented, vegan, fair trade soap as its base along with super moisturizing natural oils. It can be used to cleanse over-dry skin, or instead of shaving cream during shaving, or as a shampoo. This recipe comes from the book Beautiful Handmade Natural Soaps: Practical Ways to Make Hand-Milled Soap and Bath Essentials.



Hand-Milled Milk and Honey Soap Bar
This soap ball uses vegan, fair trade soap as its base along with milk and honey and essential oils. It is great for bathing or washing hands. This recipe comes from the book Beautiful Handmade Natural Soaps: Practical Ways to Make Hand-Milled Soap and Bath Essentials.



Bath Bombs
Drop one of these into your bath and watch it fizz! The fizzing ingredients clean you (and do good things for your hair cuticles if you're laying back in the water) while releasing a light scent. Yellow is sweet orange; green is eucalyptus, tea tree, citron; blue is bergamot. This recipe comes from the book Beautiful Handmade Natural Soaps: Practical Ways to Make Hand-Milled Soap and Bath Essentials.



Reusable Shopping Bag
Okay, okay I didn't make this one. Keep a stash of reusable bags in the car with you so they are always on hand. Use them for groceries as well as retail shopping. If possible, keep them in the front seat of your car so you can always see them. It takes some time to get in the habit, but is worth it! As a fun added bonus, several grocery stores give a 5 cent credit per bag you bring.

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4 Comments:

At March 9, 2010 at 8:35 AM , Blogger Artist4life925 said...

Hiya! Loving this blog! I found it on The Nest. I saw that DH got a mini pine tree for the secret santa, how small is it? Do you know where they got it? I'm interested in getting one for similar reasons, but I can't seem to find any around me!
Thanks!

 
At March 9, 2010 at 9:57 AM , Blogger P said...

I think that it was from Home Depot, but I am not sure. Sadly, we didn't have enough sun at the old condo and it died. They may be hard to find at this time of year, but around Christmas I've seen them in front of grocery stores, at hardware stores, and at plant nurseries.

 
At March 21, 2010 at 3:50 PM , Blogger ...heather... said...

Where do you purchase your spray bottles? I seem to always purchase the cheapies that don't spray well.

THANKS!

 
At March 21, 2010 at 7:08 PM , Blogger P said...

My cleaning ones are from Dollar Tree or Wal-Mart for about $1. Sorry that you haven't had good luck with the cheap kind. Have you tried the kind found at beauty supply stores? I have one of those for spritzing my hair with water and that thing has lasted for years.

 

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