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Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Smell goods for the house

I am a urinal cake gal.

Thought I would throw that out there. Urinal cakes are great when you have a house full of boys and men. But making one that doesn't dissolve on contact is not an easy matter. However I was on a mission. Did I mention I have a house full of boys?

I have been going rounds with most of the recipes I have found. Some don't seem to realize that what they created is just as caustic as the store bought, others have ingredients that cost way too much to even be worth the attempt, and I don't make essential oils. They are not hard to make, I have made them before, but found that I really don't use them all that much. Now extracts, I make a plethora of extracts. And I use them often. Vodka is an amazing "air purifier". Drink enough and you don't smell a thing.

So let's get to it. The first is simple, and you don't feel like you are pickling your house.

1/2 cup baking soda
1/2 cup white vinegar
1tsp lemon juice
Top off the bottle with warm water.

Wait until the fizzing goes down, then shake in a spray bottle and spray your toilet or any porcelain surface to clean and smell citrusy.

Nothing is in bloom here for me to make satchels or wands. Most of the ones I have seen take too much time to create. And honestly, besides being pretty and giving off a faint smell designated to that one area, they do little for any pet or boy smells that waft through the house. Now come herb drying season, the sheer volume of drying leaves all over the house will cover any and all smells, eventually burning the smell receptors in your nose and deadening your senses to any foul smells. Win win. Cleaning your bathroom with the above recipe helps in that area, but not really in the rest of the house, although these are the main ingredients in other smell goods.

My personal favorite is
1/2 cup vodka
1/2 cup water
1 tsp mint extract
1/2 tsp lemon juice.

Shake to blend, and use a mister to disperse. If you want no smell, just do the 1:1 ratio of vodka and water. Don't worry, you won't smell like a lush.

Homemade laundry smell-em-goods. I did mention the amount of boys, right?

1 quart mason jar
16 ounces distilled white vinegar
Fresh sprig of favorite herb or flower petals
Favorite extract

Pour vinegar into jar and add 3 tsp of extract. Then add sprig, or flowers into the jar. Tighten lid and shake. Add 1/4 cup to laundry as a softener.

Now that you know that, time to make some homemade "Fabreeze". It took me several trial and errors to get this one down. I found numerous homemade Fabreeze recipes, however the majority of them use ingredients that most of you would not be comfortable using. I know you.

2 cups homemade fabric softener. (Above)
2 cups baking soda
4 cups warm water

Mix together and place in a spray bottle.

Now we do need to do something more solid. Something that can sit around the house in pretty jars, sucking the yucky smells from the air. Still no urinal cake, but these half eggs work beautifully in trash cans, laundry baskets or sitting in a jar.

1 cup baking soda
1/2 cup boiled water
Zest from a whole orange or lemon (1/4 cups shredded flower petals work)

Add the zest or petals to the water. Mix in baking soda, mix well. It should form a thick paste. Pour into your egg cartons. Set aside and allow to dry for at least 24 hours, depending on how dry your house is. Pop out and place where needed.

The ones pictured below where not quite finished drying. They should be chalky and not flaky when finished.

Because of my gimpy status, you will be getting homemaking tips far more often


HotFlashHomestead said...

I have two college age sons and I'm telling you, the smell does not get any better. Thanks for posting these, I am probably going to use every single one of them, especially the bathroom and homemade Febreeze ones.

Phelan said...

Don't tell me that HotFlash! Sigh. By the bye, the 1:1 vodka mix works wonders in boys shoes.

Carolyn said...

Thank you for the smell-good recipes, especially the febreze one. But I have to admit, I am still having the gag reflex after reading the word "urinal cake". Yes, I know what they are. Yes, they are useful. But after working at a bar for several years (and having to occasionally clean up the restrooms), urinal cakes just make me want to gag. And just putting the word "urine" in front of the word "cake" seems sacrilegious.

Phelan said...

You forgot the trade mark logo ;) if any one was wondering I purposely spelled febreze incorrectly.

I use to clean an ob/gym clinic and a fitness center back in the day. Yes, urinal cakes are major gag! But they work wonders.

Don't google urinal cake images. You won't like it Carolyn.

kath said...

I wish I knew these recipes when my 3 boys were growing up, plus my husband works in construction, so I'm going to make these up to keep around for him and the pets. Thanks!

Representative said...

WOW! Thanks for the tip on the vodka and the boy's shoes!!! Now you're my hero!!

Phelan said...

Representative, be sure not to spray it right before they leave the house. The vodka smell does fade overnight.

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