Many of us have a want and a desire to do things more naturally but then we get overwhelmed with all the options. Not only is it time consuming to change everything to more natural options, it is also very costly. Having a natural household is something we desire, but are not sure how to make it happen.
We look at other moms, who seem to have it all together, and get overwhelmed and discouraged. We feel we will never get to where they are. Let me tell you a secret. They started with small, simple changes on their journey to having a natural household.
Eating organic, buying a water filter, making your own laundry detergent, and more may be on your list of things you want to do. The problem is knowing where you should start. The answer is begin small, and begin today. This is not going to happen overnight. It is entire lifestyle change and it will take time. Look at it as a journey into a lifestyle of natural living instead of a transition or change.
Here are a few simple changes you can make this week to have a more natural household
1. Choose glass over plastic
Start small. Keep any glass containers and jars your food comes in. Pickle jars and such work very well. Look out for glass containers at yard sales, online yard sale sites, and thrift stores. Ikea has some great options that are a great price. Look for sales and before you know it, you will have more glass containers than plastic.
Glass plates and cups as well are something you should be on the lookout for. For younger kids, use bamboo plates and bowls to eliminate accidents.
Look for a metal or glass water bottle. I love my glass water bottle. It is a fantastic addition to my lifestyle. It was pricy, but it was way worth it.
2. Use vinegar for cleaning
Get a spray bottle and create a half and half mixture of vinegar and water. This can clean almost everything in your home. I use this often times to rid smells on a bed or carpet (my toddler is potty learning). Vinegar can be used to clean many different things in your home. Click here for some more ways to use vinegar to clean.
3. Cook with a cast iron pan
This can be found at a yard sale or even on sale at a store or even ask your grandmother if she has an extra one. It seems a bit much as first, as you have to season it and reseason it after every use, but it becomes routine very quickly.
We found one on a great sale and decided to give it a go. We love it. I cannot believe I was so scared to use one before. Plus it is a great way to add more iron to your diet in a simple way.
4. Use reusable cloth towels/napkins in place of paper towels
This is such a simple thing to do. We do compost our paper towels when we use them so we are not actually creating waste when we use them, but we still wanted to use something more sustainable and save more money. We found a local mom that makes unpaper towels and purchased 20 of them for our family.
They are so easy to make that if we want more I will just make them. Next time there is a sale at a local fabric store, go and buy some thin towel-type fabric. Cut and sew the edge to keep it from fraying. We keep them in a basket on our counter. You can also look at a thrift store or just use washcloths.
5. Use coconut oil for cooking
Just do it. It is a bit pricy, but it has so many health benefits and is a lot better for you than margarine or non-stick spray. Look for a brand that sells Organic Virgin coconut oil. You can usually purchase a large container of this at Costco. If you want to try out a smaller portion, take a trip to your local health food store.
6. Get rid of air fresheners
Are you still using air fresheners? Synthetic fragrance has so many chemicals in them, and more studies are coming out showing us that these chemicals are both toxic and largely unstudied for their impact on our health.
Alternatives include a reed diffuser in your bedroom. Get a spray bottle and add witch hazel and kid-safe essential oils for bathroom trips. For the living room, we use our essential oil diffuser. I often will use our diffuser with lemon essential oil after cleaning since we don’t use chemical cleaners I sometimes miss that clean smell (which is synthetic fragrance).
7. Use dryer balls
For some reason, I was dreading making this change. I was so used to the fresh laundry smell on my clothing and now, nothing. They smell like clothes. When visiting other people I actually get overwhelmed now by the smell of dryer sheets. It is so strong. Again with the synthetic fragrances.
Dryer balls not only save you money because you no longer are purchasing dryer sheets, but they also help your clothes get dry quicker. The only challenge with dryer balls is finding them in your clothes; it is like a scavenger hunt every load of laundry.
These things are just simple suggestions that can help you get started on your journey to a more natural household.
What small changes have you made in your home?