Archive for the ‘Informative’ Category

Smart Ways To Reuse Plastic Milk Cartons

Smart Ways To Reuse Plastic Milk Cartons

As we become more aware of the damage plastics are doing to our wildlife and the environment as a whole we need to be much more careful with the plastic that already exists.

I have to be honest I started researching this post after spotting a photo on Pinterest of the igloo and thinking how cool it would be to make one but I had no idea just how many clever things you can do with your empty plastic milk cartons.

Plastic Milk Jug Igloo from Earth Wise Harmony

Plastic Milk Jug Igloo from Earth Wise Harmony

I really want to have a go at this but I have a milk intolerance and we only buy a pint at a time for the rest of the family so it might be a while before we would have enough cartons to make an igloo big enough to get inside.

This is perfect for groups of children to get together and try … like a Scout or Guide group or an after school club.

For more information on this project visit Earth Wise Harmony or check out the video from The Family Johnson/Midland Christian School by clicking here.

Hanging Storage from Sew Many Ways

Hanging Storage from Sew Many Ways

I love this hanging storage idea and the labelling system is a great addition.

Our house is stuffed with craft goodies and this would be perfect for those but it would be really useful in hubby’s allotment shed too, in a home office or in a child’s bedroom.

Visit Sew Many Waysfor more information on how to make this storage system.

Lunch Box from Creme De La Craft (additional ideas included)

Lunch Box from Creme De La Craft

This is a genius idea for anyone who is passionate about recycling and doesn’t mind putting a bit of effort in … a great alternative to plastic food bags as you can wash them and use them again.

If you don’t take sandwiches to work this is still worth a look. Pop it in your handbag with some essential fix it sewing supplies or stick it in your ruck sack when you go out with first aid bits and bobs in it.

Visit Creme De La Craft for step by step instructions.

Bird Feeder from She Knows

Bird Feeder from She Knows

You get two for one here – you can recycle plastic while you look out for your garden birds.

Why not encourage the kids to keep a record of the different birds they see on the feeder? Take a look at our blog about National Gardening Week here where you will find information about making a garden journal.

Check out She Knows for more information on how to make the bird feeder.

Toy Scoop from Crafty Journal

Toy Scoop from Crafty Journal

If your house is like ours then you will find this useful. It might even make tidying up fun for the kids and cut down on the grumbling if you are lucky.

If you have more than one child you could put their initial on their scoop and challenge them to see who can tidy the most up … even if it only works for a short time before they get wise you are still on to a winner.

For more information visit Crafty Journal.

Plant Labels from Mr Brown Thumb

Plant Labels from Mr Brown Thumb

If you are a gardener this is a great way to save some pennies and help to save the planet at the same time.

Use a Sharpie marker to write on your labels to make sure your information is clear, easy to read and doesn’t accidentally rub off.

More details can be found over on the Mr Brown Thumb website.

Garden Trowel and Seed Tray from A Farm Of Your Home

Garden Trowel and Seed Tray from A Farm Of Your Home

If you like the plant labels then this is another good one for you.

Although the original article doesn’t have step by step instructions the photos should give you the information you need to recreate this fabulous idea.

Visit A Farm Of Your Home.

Watering Can from Karimas Crafts

Watering Can from Karimas Crafts

This watering can is probably the most simple idea of the lot but no less deserving of its place on the list … not least because there’s really no reason we can’t all make one of these.

You don’t have to use a large milk jug carton because the one pint variety will work just as well.

Take a look at the Karimas Crafts website.

Butterfly Window Decorations from Alpha Mom

Butterfly Window Decorations from Alpha Mom

You will need to scroll down the page on Alpha Mom to find the information about the butterflies but it’s worth having a look at the window art feature before you scroll passed it.

You don’t have to do butterflies try dragonflies, beetles or random sun catcher patterns too.

This is a great way of gathering craft supplies for the kids to use without having to buy additional things.

Visit Alpha Mom and scroll down the page to find more information.

Milk Carton Monsters from Danielles Place

Milk Carton Monsters from Danielles Place

And to end – a bit of fun for the kids.

Although this is billed as a Halloween craft you could easily adapt it to be a bunny for Easter with eggs in it or a dinosaur to gobble up Lego bricks.

You don’t have to put sweets in there … why not use it for small toys or make a mini version using the one pint jug which would be great for hair bobbles.

Visit Danielles Place and scroll all the way down the page to find more information but check out the other ideas too on your way by.

If you try one of the ideas we have featured why not post a pic on our Facebook page

or tag us in on Instagram.

Alternatives to chemical cleaning products

Six Alternatives To Chemical Household Cleaners

Disclaimer to start … I am not an expert but what I am is a regular every day person who is concerned about the amount of chemicals and plastics we use and who wants to try and improve things so we don’t leave an almighty mess for our kids to deal with.

Having done some research it seems that with a bottle of vinegar, a packet of baking soda (bicarbonate of soda) and a bag of lemons you are on your way to saving the world … perhaps not single handedly or without taking steps in other areas of your life but hey lets inspire ourselves to make an effort to make a difference.

*Always clearly label anything that you make to avoid any confusion and store it out of the reach of children*

Remember that if you keep your homemade cleaning products in containers that don’t contain any plastic or that are at least recyclable then you are being even more proactive.

Multi Purpose Cleaner from Going Zero Waste

Plus Granite And Marble Cleaner from The Spruce

Multi Purpose Cleaner from Going Zero Waste

This was actually a tough one. Some people swear by recipes which include both vinegar and baking soda (bicarbonate of soda) while others say that when you use both together they cancel each other out.

Before we go any further it’s important to note that you can not clean granite or marble surfaces with anything that contains vinegar as it will etch in to the surface so keep this in mind.

Visit Going Zero Waste for the instructions on how to make an all purpose cleaner containing vinegar.

Visit The Spruce for the instructions on how to make a cleaner for granite and marble that is vinegar free.

Glass Cleaner from Wellness Mama

Glass Cleaner from Wellness Mama

We have a dog who loves to look out of the window beside the front door and wait for her loved ones to come home which results in smudged dried on dog nose marks that aren’t fun to get rid of.

Big brand glass cleaners are full of chemicals that I doubt are good for my pouch to be getting either in her mouth or on her nose so this looks like a great idea to me.

If you are sensitive to essential oils, or in my case if you don’t want your dog to be licking a window and ingesting the essential oils, simply miss them out of the recipe.

A microfibre cloth will work well with this glass cleaner but they do have an environmental impact as they are made from plastics and do not biodegrade so you could use a piece of cotton cloth instead.

Visit Wellness Mama for instructions on how to make this glass cleaner.

Carpet Deodorizer from DIY Natural

Carpet Deodorizer from DIY Natural

We are quite lucky that our dog doesn’t give our house that tell tale doggy smell however when we moved here we did inherit some pretty dingy carpets and while we’ve been spending money on the unseen bits and bobs that needed tackling we haven’t had spare cash to replace them.

I am definitely going to give this a go as it is so simple to try and the baking soda (bicarbonate of soda) neutralises any odour rather than just masking the smell.

As I said earlier some people are sensitive to essential oils and you can choose not to add them to your deodorizer as they are just to leave a pleasant smell after the baking soda does the hard work.

Visit DIY Natural for the instructions on how to make this carpet deodorizer.

Toilet Bombs from Mom4Real

Toilet Bombs from Mom4Real

I have been known to utter some fairly unlady like grumblings while I’ve been cleaning the toilet. I wonder some times if the Gruffalo has broken in to use the loo! The idea of a toilet bomb is intriguing.

I’ve made bath bombs using citric acid and baking soda (bicarbonate of soda) so these are really just a pimped version of those with added washing up liquid.

If you want to go completely chemical free here you could leave out the washing up liquid and just add a tiny amount of water to bind the mixture. You will need less water than you think.

Visit Mom4Real for the instructions on how to make these toilet bombs.

Bathroom Air Freshener from Life Family Joy

Bathroom Air Freshener from Life Family Joy

Our small downstairs loo doesn’t have a window and can get a bit whiffy from just from simply keeping the door closed. There has been quite a bit of press recently about the harm breathing chemical air fresheners can do to you and so with it being an enclosed space I have steered away from putting one in the room.

This recipe, from Life Family Joy, is a great idea, although I will have to take care to avoid lavender essential oil as I have a visitor who is sensitive to that particular essential oil.

Visit Life Family Joy for the instructions on how to make this air freshener.

Sink Drain Cleaner from Green Living Ideas

Sink Drain Cleaner from Green Living Ideas

When we moved in to our house to discover the shower drain was already blocked I was told by the plumber, as he was using an industrial strength magic potion to shift the blockage, that you should treat your drains once a month rather than waiting until they give up and fight back.

I can also tell you that chemical drain cleaner is not the best thing to breath or to flush out in to your environment and so any alternative must be worth a try.

I can’t promise it will shift a heavy blockage so keep on top of things rather than waiting for the worst to happen. The same plumber did tell me that even if you feel you are being kind to your drains soap and hair can solidify in the drain and then that attracts more soap and hair which will evensually cause a blockage.

I will be trying this for our shower and sink drains once a month to see how we get on.

Visit Green Living Ideas for the instructions on how to make this drain cleaner.

It’s actually mind blowing how much we do rely on chemicals and plastic products so don’t just sigh and grumble about somebody else preaching environmental issues at you because every small step we take will help to make a difference.

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