DIY Wool Dryer Balls

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I started cleaning my home with plant based products when I became pregnant with my first child. That was over 6 years ago! Coming up with a solution to replacing dryer sheets has been a little bit harder. Especially converting my husband over. The guys can be so hard to get to make changes! There is no need to have some kind of fragrance on your clothing, but we have been fed this crap from advertising that your laundry is not clean unless you smell a fragrance for days.

Dryer sheets are the most toxic item that is in your house! Aside from replacing your laundry detergent (follow this blog on making your own here) the dryer sheets are a great place to get started. According to the Environmental Working Group:

The mystery mixtures that provide the jolt of fragrance in fabric softeners and dryer sheets can contain hundreds of untested chemicals, including toxic ingredients like phthalates and synthetic musks - both suspected hormone disruptors. Fragrances are among world's top five allergens. A recent University of Washington study on air contaminants from fragranced consumer goods detected between 18 and 20 chemicals in each of four laundry products - including likely human carcinogens acetaldehyde and 1,4-dioxane, developmental toxicants methyl ethyl ketone and chloromethane, and allergens like linalool.

So ditch the dryer sheets and either purchase your own dryer or just make some. They are so easy to make! Here is what you need:

  • 100% Wool Yarn
  • An old pair of panty hose or buy a $1 pair at the dollar store
  • Washer and Dryer ūüôā

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Just start rolling your yarn into a ball. I was able to get two balls out of each spool of yarn.

 

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Now you are going to place the balls into 1 leg of the panty hose. You will cut the leg off and save the other for when you want to make more. Place a ball into the toe of the panty hose and tie a knot to keep it in place and then put another ball in repeating until you have all of them in the panty hose and all of them are knotted so they stay in place.

 

 

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Now just throw them in with a load of towels and wash on hot. Once the load is done throw everything into the dryer. After the load is done you can cut the wool dryer balls out of the panty hose which will now be felted and will not unravel.

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Now just place a couple drops of your favorite Young Living Essential Oil on your yarn ball and enjoy your wonderfully fresh scented clothing. ūüôā

I love to use Purification, Lavender, or Citrus Fresh!

Get your oils here! You will not regret it!

What chemicals in your home are doing to your body!

I never did like using things like bleach to clean with. It always caused me to cough a lot and I would have to air out the house if I did clean with it. So I naturally, no pun intended, I leaned towards using natural products to clean my house. For example, I would use vinegar and steam clean my floors and bathrooms. It wasn't until 3 years ago that I started to look closely at the ingredients in the other products I was using, like my shampoo, body wash, laundry detergent, and the list goes on....

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I have slowly weeded out these toxins out of my home because of the heavy burden they put on our body. The exposure to these chemicals is not just here and there. They are in so many products that we use on a daily basis if not many times a day that our body can not keep up with flushing them out so they just build up and get stored.

Here is what I found: 

1. Triclosan - mostly found in anti-bacterial products. Triclosan is also a common ingredient in toothpaste, face wash, deodorant, a host of personal care products, and even mattresses, toothbrushes and shoe insoles. The American Medical Association says not to use it in your home.
Risks: Triclosan is an aggressive antibacterial agent that can promote the growth of drug-resistant bacteria. The EPA is currently investigating whether triclosan may also disrupt endocrine function.
2. Phthalates - Used in a wide variety of consumer products such as fragrances, cosmetics and shampoos, medical devices, soft toys that children and pets play with and often chew, building and home decorating materials, and even children's clothing.
Risks: Phthalates are known endocrine disruptors. According to the CDC, men that have higher levels of phthalates in their blood have lower sperm counts. Exposure many happens through inhalation, but can also happen through skin contact. The skin can and does absorb chemicals and those chemicals go straight to organs.
 
3. Quarternary ammonium compounds, or "QUATS" - found in fabric softener liquids, dryer sheets, most household cleaners labeled antibacterial.
Risks: help breed antibiotic resistant bacteria. They are also a skin irritant. The Association of Occupational and Environmental Clinics, a leading international authority on asthma, calls these chemicals "asthmagens," substances that can cause asthma to develop in otherwise healthy people. With asthma affecting nearly 1 in 10 American children, it makes sense to avoid exposing kids unnecessarily to asthma-causing chemicals.Many quats have antibacterial qualities. While it might sound useful to keep clothes germ-free, freshly washed clothes are already plenty clean, and overuse of quats may lead to development of antibiotic-resistant superbugs.
4. 2 - Butoxyethanol - found in window, kitchen and multipurpose cleaners.
Risks: causes anemia by damaging red blood cells, creates air pollution that exceeds workplace limits, is linked to impaired fertility and reproductive and developmental toxicity, and (just to really make the case) EPA considers it a possible human carcinogen.
5. Ammonia - polishing agent for bathroom fixtures, sinks and jewelry; glass cleaner.
Risks: Ammonia is a powerful irritant. The people really affected are those that have asthma, elderly people with breathing problems or lung issues. People that are exposed to ammonia a lot are housekeepers and they often develop chronic bronchitis and asthma. If mixed with bleach it will create a poisonous gas.
6. Chlorine - scouring powders, toilet cleaner, laundry whiteners, tap water.
Risks: You are exposed while cleaning with water, showering and washing your hands. The health risks can be respiratory irritant to serious thyroid disfunction.
7. Sodium Hydroxide - oven cleaners
Risks: burn the skin, eyes, and lungs. Many ingredient labels warn users to wear long gloves and avoid inhaling spray mist and vapors.
8. Sodium Laureth Sulfate - Anything that foams or suds up. Soaps, shampoo, toothpaste, engine degreasers,  etc.
Risks: It is a known skin irritant. It pollutes our groundwater. It is toxic to fish and other aquatic animals and has the potential for bioaccumulation (meaning it accumulates in the bodies of the fish.) It is actually a pesticide and herbicide. It is commonly used to kill plants and insects. It emits toxic fumes when heated. AKA: during your shower and washing hands! Toxic Sodium Oxides and Sulfur Oxides are released when SLS is heated. According to the American College of Toxicity, this includes corrosion of the fats and proteins that make up skin and muscle. Long-term permeation of the body’s tissues. A study from the University of Georgia Medicine showed that SLS had the power to permeate the eyes, brain, heart, and liver. It helps other chemicals get into your body.
After reading all of that which pretty much eliminates everything you have in your home that can be very overwhelming! If you are like me - I just wanted to throw out everything in my house and start new. You don't have to do that. You can start replacing things as you run out of them with way better items.
You can clean your over by putting water in an oven safe dish and let it steam up your oven and then wipe it down to clean it. No money needed or anything new to be purchased!
I started making my own laundry detergent which you can read the blog here.
You can replace ALL of your household cleaners with ONE cleaner: THIEVES! The best cleaner out there! No gloves needed, completely safe for your children and animals, no fumes, it is plant based, eco-friendly, will actually help support your immune system and smells great!
You can get an entire Thieves Starter Kit here: http://yl.pe/cvm
I also ditched the dryer sheets and made my own wool dryer balls. I infuse them with essential oils before throwing into my load of laundry. I will have a post on how to make your own wool dryer balls very soon!
Just making these small changes will get you on your way to having a healthy, more balanced body. The Thieves kit can easily get you started and if you create your own wholesale account using my link http://yl.pe/cvm you will receive your own wool dryer balls AND the kit is also 10% off this month! Even better!

DIY Liquid Laundry Soap Tutorial

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Making your own laundry soap is very easy and inexpensive. Why not make your own? It only takes minutes, will save you a lot of money each month that add up over the year, and did I mention the MOST important part? You will be eliminating all the toxins and chemicals that you are washing your clothing in! It is a WIN WIN WIN!

Here is what you will need: Dr. Bronner's liquid castille soap, Washing soda, Baking soda, and the best ingredient of all... Young Living Thieves cleaner! You will use a 5 gallon bucket to put all of your ingredients in a use 1/2 cup per load. I purchase all of my ingredients in bulk because I use these items for many of my diy recipes and cleaning around my house. The cost breakdown of making this laundry soap is $0.07 a load, that will save you 1/2 the cost of what you are spending on chemical laden brand laundry soaps. You should be able to get 160 loads from one batch, taking you only 5 minutes to make it! Say WHAT? Yep, I said only 5 minutes. SO.WORTH.IT!

Ready to get started? Well let's get to it. Grab your 5 gallon bucket and fill it half way with hot water from the sink. You are going to measure out 3 cups of baking soda and pour into you water and stir until it has dissolved. I use 3 cups of baking soda because I have 2 young boys and my husbands work clothes get really dirty. I find that 3 cups makes a difference when it comes to cleaning power.

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Once you have the baking soda almost completely dissolved go ahead and add in the rest of the hot water. You are now going to measure out 1 1/2 cups liquid castille soap, 1 1/2 cup washing soda and 1/2 cup Thieves cleaner (this is your secret ingredient here!).

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Pour in the remaining ingredients and give it all a good stirring to mix everything up and dissolve the remaining ingredients. Now all you do is put on the lid, let it sit over night and you are go to go!

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So easy you will never go back to store bought laundry detergent! Your clothes will be clean, without all of the toxins and chemicals that leach onto your skin when you wear your clothing and you will not be inhaling the chemicals when you smell them. Just think of everytime you see a commercial of someone smelling the towels from the laundry, they are actually inhaling chemicals! Take charge of your health and start removing all those nasty chemicals in your home that are causing your body to not function properly.

Till next time....

Crock pot meal food prep (Gluten free & Vegan options)

1eaae0_3a750863eec24e8f9d32a973b195e49c1eaae0_bcc5f7c13d7e4aee8a1873929b5c8e86Meal planning is the best way to make sure you stay on track with eating healthy clean options and saving time during the week. It is those times when you haven't planned what you are going to eat that you make really bad decisions and compromise your healthy eating habits. This is not the time of year you want to be eating take out all the time! You will find your immune system compromised and not feeling your best.

These meals are all meant to be gluten free recipes and can be vegan by removing meat from 4 of the 5 meals. You can choose to have buns or tortilla wraps with a few of the recipes if you are not gluten free. These recipes are very adaptable so buy organic and fresh produce where you can or sub ingredients to your liking.

There are VERY healthy options and some not so healthy options as far as garnishing and choosing soy sauce (remember soy isn't a great choice, but if you have it at home and don't want to buy the other options no worries).

When prepping for freezer crock pot meals I like to write on my freezer bags ahead of time how to cook the meal and what I will need the day off cooking. That way the ink doesn't smear.

All meals should have 4-6 servings. Some may be able to have as left overs or freeze left overs for another time. You can also stretch out meals by serving extra veggies on the side. Any of the ingredients that I have separated with a line are ingredients you need the day of cooking not the day of food prep.

To see some great Slow Cooker recipes, click here.