I told y'all last post about how much our new house needs the deepest clean ever, right? Well, let's just say it's been trials and mountains of errors on finding a product to help with the 12 years of dirt layers caked on all the trim, doors, and cabinets. But by some glorious revelation, I found the best product that not only cleans, degreases, and moisturizes the wood--Mrs. Meyer's Dish Soap [affiliate link].
I know what you're thinking, how can dish soap be the best cleaning product for the job?! I'm just as surprised as you; although, I really shouldn't be. I've been a fan of Mrs. Meyer's Clean Day products for about a year and a half now, since I made the decision to start minimizing chemicals in my home. Their products smell amazing and make your skin super soft due to their use of essential oils (hence their ability to moisturize surfaces).
The information on their website really explains what makes them different:
We make intelligent, responsible raw material choices, and whenever possible, obtain materials from renewable plant resources such as coconut, corn, soy or olive. At times we choose to use non-plant-derived material for reasons of efficacy, consistency and safety. Our products do not contain chlorine bleach, ammonia, petroleum distillates, parabens, phosphates or phthalates. We use concentrated, biodegradable formulas and at least 25% post-consumer plastic in our bottles. We do not test on animals.
So yeah, I'm a fan. I should add a little disclaimer here, though. I do not use their dish soap for dishes. Weird, I know. But I find it too oily and difficult to rinse, leaving a funny taste in the cups, so there you go. The good news is that it cleans everything else SO well.
We've also used it to pressure wash and clean the exterior of our previous home, which was wood sided. Worked wonderfully. And just this morning, I cleaned our stainless steel microwave, inside and out, and it didn't even leave streaks. Seriously, y'all. It rocks.
What You'll Need To Tackle Your Next Project:
In the midst of all the cleaning, I'm really enjoying listening to The Bear and The Nightingale by Katherine Arden.
Hello spring, you fickle little thing you. Much like your inability to decide whether or not you want to dip your toe into winter or summer every day, I too am trying to daily decide how I feel about the huge changes in my life. Recently we moved houses, cities, and states, relocating about an hour South of our previous location. We made the change without mentioning it much to our friends because we weren't sure we'd actually do it. I mean, yes we wanted to move, but our wish list and budget didn't align. So, finding a place felt impossible. But when we did find a place that met all our demands [insert shock here], we fell into an epic new season of life in a crushing whirlwind resembling Dorothy's crash into OZ.
Isn't it funny how the things we say we'll never do again ironically are the very things we repeat? Ha. After surviving an extensive remodel a few years ago, Prince Charming and I swore we'd never do one again. Never. But here we are, life making liars of us once again. Our current residence was built in 1989 and hasn't been touched since. Not to mention that fun fact that no one has lived here in 12 years! Everything is outdated, dirty, and in desperate need of everything.
I've been a grump the past few days because I haven't been able to work in a few weeks now. We're still waist deep in boxes, spending every waking minute painting, installing flooring, and I've been cleaning like I never knew possible (more on that coming up in the next post). My desktop computer isn't even plugged up yet. My desk is sitting in halves in the garage, looking like a sad magician's assistant--waiting for some wave of a wand to put it back together again. So, instead of sitting around getting even more frustrated by the fact that I'm unable to concentrate on my current WIP, I thought I'd rant about our new project, the hell it's putting us through, and the highlights (yeah, yeah, there are a few). :) Stay tuned!
In the meantime, enjoy the photos of our Japanese Maple and a rose I found at my grandmother's on Easter.
There's something strangely beautiful about a porch on a late summer afternoon. A whiff of fall carnivals and peanuts almost reaches your nose. It's the kind of day when even busy streets are quiet -- afraid they'll awake the sleeping summer again. Everyone's ready for a new season, for the rush of summer to fall away and the warmth of slow crisp days to begin.
No one will miss the allergies, sticky heat, and lawn mowing. No one will care about Yard of the Month, or those pesky five pounds that made your swimsuit look like rubber bands around sausages.
All the cares will hibernate until next year. There will be new worries, sure, but cool air brings people together. We will celebrate surviving the brutal heat by feasting on turkey and fruit cake -- stuffing rolls under sweaters.
This is the season of warm colors, loving faces, and enjoying front porches. It's a time for masquerade parties, wishbones, and kissing Prince Charming under store-bought mistletoe.
For everything there is a season, and this season is mine.
Three years ago, my husband and I purchased a little old house on a lake. It's been a long road, and we still have LOTS to do. But we've come a long way.
Once upon a time, I married the love of my life. He got a job in Texas, and we moved from our beloved sweet home in Alabama to the barren desert of south Texas. Tired of living in a hotel (six months of misery) and thinking we'd "bloom where we're planted," we purchased a home there. It didn't take us long before we were living paycheck to paycheck like the other 75% of Americans.
That's when we took Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University -- a 13 week money rehab. It was sobering, and one of the best experiences we've ever had. We decided to do something most people would think is crazy and move into a camper (with out three dogs). And we're not talking about a nice, big luxury camper with sliders. Nope. I could stretch both my arms out and reach each side. Tiny.
We rented our home out and saved and paid off debt. We lived there for over two years. Then we finally got an opportunity to return back to the deep south, near where we were raised. That's when we purchased this lil hot mess.
Luckily, we got it for an incredible deal (especially when you consider that a huge lake is in its backyard). We almost felt guilty for paying nearly half the price you'd pay for the typical new car. Almost. When you consider that we've been working on it for three years, and we moved into it without a functioning bathroom, kitchen, or air conditioning (this is South Georgia for goodness sakes), we probably got what we deserved. :)
Most importantly, we got something we never thought we'd have -- freedom from debt.
I thought I'd share a few before and afters. Keep in mind it's still a work-in-progress.
One of our goals this year is to finally finish this remodel, so you'll probably see more posts about our lil pod in the coming months.
What's the biggest DIY project you've ever taken on?
Vanessa K. Eccles
Books, life, and travel.
Author of FABLED, RED RIBBONS, and OF LOVE & LEGEND // Founder of The Faithful Creative Magazine