Day 89- BUDGET: Pots and Pans

Every year or two, I find my frying pans and chopping board become damaged and worn. I don’t like using non-stick frying pans when the surface is so scratched it can leach metals into the food. I don’t like using chopping boards when they are warped or blackened. It usually comes to a point when I just have to replace them but they are so expensive if I want something that is going to last. I’ve decided to budget £100 a year to replace my frying pans, oven trays or chopping boards if I feel I need to.

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Day 88- NEW HABIT: 2 Monthly Clean

NEW HABIT: Establish a 2-monthly housework list for things I can’t get done every week & schedule it in the diary

My weekly housework routine is really becoming established and I’m finding it easier to fit in and somewhat enjoying it. I have my limits though and anything over 4 hours starts to feel repressive. But there are things that eventually need doing and cant be left much longer than 2 months. I’m thinking of things like cleaning kitchen appliances, giving the shower and toilet stands a proper clean, cleaning the dishwasher and washing machine. There are plenty of more things that will become apparent. After this, I will probably create a bi-annual routine for even more deep-cleaning.

I think the 2-monthly cleaning will take all day and I don’t want to give up an entire Saturday for it. So I’m taking advantage of the fact that my parents visit every two months and have taken a day off work to complete it on the Friday before they visit. I’ve decided I will take that Friday off work every 2 months to keep this routine up.

This Friday, I am taking my first Friday off and will create my chore list for completion every 2 months. Using a holiday for this purpose means I really have to make it matter so I will plan the day thoroughly. I think I will work from 6am-4pm including 30 minute breaks for lunch and breakfast. One day in the future I would love to reward the day with a takeout but for now I can’t because I’ve given them up for the rest of the year and I’m on a cleanse and trying to transition to a plant-based diet.

“I will take a day off work every 2 months to complete a deeper clean and create a list for it”

 

Day 84- LEVEL UP: Create Cleaning Box

When I first introduced my weekly housework routine I struggled to fit it in and complete it every week. But since I created a printed housework task list I have had much more success. It’s easier to do the housework with a to-do list I can tick off. It gives me structure and focus and I simply commit to it until it’s finished. The only thing I still struggle with is the final task which is mopping the wood floors. Twice I have left it uncompleted. I’m considering a steam mop may solve it but that is an expense I can’t afford.

I’ve been using up cleaning products I’ve had around the house for a long time. However, now that I am having success with the housework and I’ve been establishing a routine visiting True Food, it’s time to level-up the cleaning box.

I narrowed down the minimum products I need to complete my weekly housework successfully. I need a duster, lime-scale remover, toilet cleaner, a scourer, cloths,  glass cleaner, a glass cloth and anti-bac.

I went to True Food today and bought some ethical alternatives and the picture below shows my ideal cleaning box. Everything is considerate but I have included Viakal and bleach just incase the others don’t cut it.

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Day 83- NEW HABIT: The Houseplants

NEW HABIT: Check water levels everyday & water once a week.

NEW HABIT: Re-pot every 6 months, Spring & Autumn.

NEW HABIT: Feed every 2 weeks

NEW HABIT: Budget £50 every 6 months for new compost, plants and pots

I spent about £100 on houseplants and pots at Ikea a year ago to liven up my living room and inject some oxygen and nature into my environment.

I have struggled to look after them. I lost the Aloe Vera plants very quickly. And the ivy started to survive only when I put it in the kitchen. There are a couple of spikey plants that have thrived and don’t seem to mind not being watered but my large plants are suffering. They either dry out and turn brown and flag, so I water them more, and then they rot at the root, wither and die. I’ve learned that different plants need different care, so I have to get to know their individual needs. I’ve learned that too much water around the roots can rot them, so I have to be really careful how much I water them. Maybe less frequently? I think I will put a water container outside to collect rainwater to water the plants because I’ve read it’s beneficial to them.

So today I’m going to review my plants and buy new pots and re-pot them if necessary. I may find new locations for them around the house and henceforth, I will introduce the new habits which should help them thrive more.

“I will check the condition of my houseplants everyday. I will give them a proper water once a week. Every two weeks, I”l drop some feed into the water. Every six months I will re-pot them if needed. I will budget £50 every six months to fund new compost, plants and pots”

I bought a couple of new pots and plants from Ikea today and re-organised my houseplants. Unfortunately, a couple of them had to be thrown away. Here are pictures of the newly potted plants and their new locations.

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Day 82- ETHICAL HAUL: Cleaning Items

Today was my third visit back to True Food and this time my focus was on the Cleaning Products I need. My weekly housework routine is really taking shape and I am even beginning to enjoy it a little bit now. I have several items I use to complete my housework routine and I want to start using more ethical and environmentally friendly products in due course.

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BIO Glass Cleaner– This is for my mirrors and polished surfaces. It’s a step up from Mr Muscle.

BIO Toilet Cleaner– I really hope this cuts the mustard

BIO All Purpose Sanitiser– This is my alternative to Dettol or anti-bac. It’s for the shower tray and toilets.

BIO Bathroom Cleaner– I’m really hoping this will be my Viakal substitute.

I also bought these kitchen scourer pads. I’m planning to replace my regular sponges from the supermarket with them.

I think I’m done now with the household stuff and the next visit will start to be all about food.

Day 79- NEW HABIT: Cleaning the Car

NEW HABIT: Clean and vacuum the car every four weeks

NEW HABIT: Valet car every 26 weeks and budget £30 for it

Cleaning the car is something I’ve always procrastinated about. If I can’t keep my house clean, what makes you think I can keep my car clean? It gets so bad, with rubbish everywhere, food wrappers, car parking tickets etc… I had a leak not long ago so even mould has been growing on the carpet. All my seats are stained so I regret not buying nice seat covers from the beginning. If I ever get around to upgrading my car, habits will have to change.

I spontaneously decided to pay to have my car cleaned last Wednesday. We have a valet at work and I took advantage of him being there and offered him £30 for the best clean I can get with that. I know he did a good job and probably did more than he should have. Now the car is all nice and clean, I don’t want to let it get as bad again. I need to make cleaning the car a habit. It’s quite cold still and I’m reluctant to commit to cleaning it myself. I’m going to try and vacuum and clean the outside every 4 weeks. If I don’t manage it myself, I will promise to take it to a carwash. I think I should ask the valet to do one of his thorough cleans twice a year.

“I will make sure the car is cleaned and vacuumed every 4 weeks and ensure car is scheduled for a valet clean every six months and budget for it”

 

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Day 68- ETHICAL HAUL: Kitchen Household Items

It has been three weeks since my last ethical haul from True Food. That was my first time and I purchased as much of our personal care items as I could. I’ve added lip balm and mouthwash to that list now and will buy it next time I need it.

This week I focused on Kitchen Household Items. IMG_3930.jpegSODASAN REGENERATING SALT– This is to replace the dishwasher salt I put in my dishwasher to stop the hard water causing stains and calcium build up

SODASAN AUTO DISH TABS– This is to replace the dishwasher tablets for cleaning. They did have powder as well but I thought an alternative tab would be a stepping stone. From my previous experiences, I’ve noted that environmentally friendly products don’t always clean as well, so more pre-rinsing may be required on my part to keep them effective and I don’t want to be put off if things fail.

BIO D DISHWASHER RINSE AID– When I got to True Food I found out I needed to bring my own bottles to fill the products in. They have everything on tap from laundry detergent to shampoo. Without bottles, I chose these filled bottles instead and next time will take the bottles back to fill up.

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BIO D WASHING UP LIQUID– I had nearly run out of washing up liquid so getting this was about time. Again, with environmentally friendly washing up liquids, they don’t always cut the mustard or last as long. Using them can become frustrating and to succeed, it will involve more rinsing utensils beforehand.

LOOF CO WASHING UP PAD– I was curious with this loofah washing up pad. I do like to use a scrubber at the sink and feel bad about chucking them out when they look bad but this is meant to last for months and is a natural product to dispose of.

ECO LEAF KITCHEN ROLL– I forgot to take a photo but I thought I’d give this a go.

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BIO D LAUNDRY DETERGENT– They had bio and non bio detergent in large containers but I decided to just try this non bio small bottle because I have struggled to get results in the past with environmentally friendly alternatives. I’ll see how I get on this time.

BIO D FABRIC CONDITIONER– They actually had a juniper scent and unscented one but I went with lavender because I usually like it so much.

They have a bleaching and stain remover product too but I have my standard ones to use up first.

My next ethical haul will be in two weeks’ time and I think it will be my Vegan Storecupboard ingredients as I transition to a plant-based, vegan diet after my Microbiome Cleanse.