A multi-purpose and very versatile item to have in your pantry!

A multi-purpose and very versatile item to have in your pantry!

It is white vinegar!!! Other than pickling food and as a small ingredient in cooking recipes, I never knew that you could use vinegar for a variety of cleaning purposes! Since I have learned about it, I have replaced my regular multi-purpose cleaner with a vinegar cleaning spray that I use for everything. It saves so much money and is also earth-friendly. Very simple to make and it is also extremely to find on any store shelf. Buying a gallon of this stuff only costs a few dollars but it goes a very long way!

Since there are over a hundred uses for vinegar, I will try to list out the main points only and what I usually end up using it for.

Multi-Purpose Cleaner

Just add one part white vinegar, one part water, and a drop or two of dishwashing soap into a spray bottle and there you go! It cuts through grease so easily and disinfects and deoderizes! I use this on my kitchen counters, the tables, the bathroom sink, and even the toilet bowl!

Laundry Stain Remover

Instead of buying laundry stain removers, I simply spray full vinegar onto the areas it needs to be on. Works just as well as spray and wash.

Deoderizer

I cannot stand the smell that lingers after cooking fish! The sinks smell like it, the cutting boards, even my hands smell so fishy! I spray full strength vinegar everywhere and just let it sit for a few minutes then wipe it down to get rid of the smell! The whole place might end up smelling like vinegar, but after it dries that smell goes away! Much better than the linger of fish. I even dunk my hands into vinegar to get rid of as much of the smell as possible. It really helps but if that smell gets caught under my nails it is really hard to remove.

Disinfectant

Instead of using bleach or hydrogen peroxide to disinfect items, I just soak it in vinegar or pour it over the item. For example wooden cutting boards can get really nasty after some use, just pour some vinegar over it and let it sit for maybe half an hour before washing it away.

Those are just the simple and overall general uses for white vinegar! There are so many other purposes it can be used for just by itself or in combination with other common cleaning items.

What kind of cleaning sprays do you use? Do you still use the bleach heavy sprays or have you switched over to something easier on your nose?


Courtesy of istockphoto.com Los Angeles traffic, not a lovely sight to see especially if you are in it.

Courtesy of istockphoto.com
Los Angeles traffic, not a lovely sight to see especially if you are in it.

Living in Los Angeles certainly changes the way I drive. If I drove like how I used to in the Midwest, I would get honked at every single light and probably get the middle finger a lot! Even though I still say I am actually one of the slower drivers here in the city, when I go back to the Midwest I can definitely see that I drive differently now.

Traffic and congestion in Los Angeles is not fun. About half the time just driving around you can run into some kind of traffic for absolutely no reason at all! Plus since it is a big city there are so many people living here. This creates quite a mess sometimes. You will see drivers with their foot stomping on their gas racing from one red light to another only to brake at the last second. You can imagine what this does to gas mileage!

I cannot really get away from the traffic and too many cars here, unless I moved away from here, but at least there is something I can do to try to get the most gas mileage possible. Hypermilling!

Hypermilling is basically changing the way you drive to get the best gas mpg possible. When that light turns red, just gradually start stepping on that gas pedal and let your car slowly speed up. When you see a light turn red in front of you, take your foot off the pedal and coast to the light. On highways also, if you can stay around 60mph you can save tons of gas that way!

I happen to drive a pretty gas efficient car already. 2006 Corolla that gets an estimated 28 city and 37 highway. For a combined mpg of 31. I do plenty of local driving and get stuck in traffic a good amount both local and highway. Funny how I actually end up getting that average mpg of 31! Some weeks I do better and get 32mpg but 31mpg is my average for sure! Those weeks when I get higher than 31mpg feels pretty good. I just keep a log everytime I fill up on gas to see how I am doing.

One good side effect of driving this way is how it makes you feel. It takes way more control to speed up and coast slowly, drive at a slower speed on the highway than just speeding off as fast as possible. It makes my commutes much more calming and relaxing, because I have to be in that state in order to drive that way! Hehe the funnest part about it is watching other cars zoom up to the next red light, then catching up to them each and every time. I end up getting to my destination in the same amount of time, but without burning up my gas tank and all that braking.

How do you drive? Do you have a lead foot or do you practice hypermilling to get the most out of your gas?


The hubs cooked me this delicious meal. Some veggies on the side I did not take a picture of too. Love it when he cooks for me! Sometimes he even does the dishes afterwards too when I am busy.

The hubs cooked me this delicious meal. Some veggies on the side I did not take a picture of too. Love it when he cooks for me! Sometimes he even does the dishes afterwards too when I am busy.

Cooking at home is one of the best ways to save money and save the environment! It is much cheaper to buy the ingredients and not have to pay for the service and atmosphere. The price of a good salmon entree at a restaurant ends up being around $25 after tax and tip. Even more if it is a fancy restaurant. When you buy food at the grocery store, you don’t even have to pay the tax on food! My hubby and I save oodles of money by trying our hardest to not eat out. The two of us actually love eating out though and trying new food. When we first started going out we found ourselves trying restaurants with a hefty bill of $100 a person. Not so good on our wallets. Since then, we’ve cut it down to once, or sometimes twice a week of eating out. Our days of dining at $100 a person places have also ended, wanting to buy our own house and saving up for the eventuality of kids has definitely ended that.

You do not have to drive anywhere and if you have leftovers, then no styrofoam or plastic for you! This can definitely save a lot of gas depending on how far you would go to eat. Plus, if you really want to delve into it, it is easier to know where your food is coming from if you cook it yourself. You can shop at markets that sell produce from local farmers, thus ensuring that your food didn’t have to travel far in order to get to you!

Of course, being able to cook decently well is a strong requirement as no one would be cooking at home if they did not like to eat their own food. My hubby and I both happen to have decent cooking skills. Usually I end up cooking on weekdays since I have a more flexible schedule, he tries to make up for it by cooking on the weekends. A hubby that can cook well, is in my view, one very sexy husband. Our very first date he hooked me by cooking me salmon with asparagus.

Let’s break this down in monetary terms.

Estimated cost of eating a salmon entree at a restaurant – $25-$30 after tax and tip
Cost of cooking it at home (on sale $5.99 a lb salmon, let’s say $1 for rice) – $6.99 for two

Win win! There are so many benefits to cooking at home versus going out to eat! I do enjoy going out though, so I’m not going to cut it out entirely, but I really don’t have to go every single day. Do not forget the fact that eating at home is also usually much healthier than eating out. You know exactly what you put in your food, whereas the restaurant can put whatever they like (butter overload???).

How often do you cook at home versus going out to eat?


Well hello! Welcome to my first ever blog post! I have always loved to write and decided to finally try my hand at this new outlet. So what am I going to make this blog about? Well…keep reading!

Two of my biggest personal goals in life right now are:

Save the earth by minimalizing my impact!

Become a millionaire!

I am always constantly trying to find ways to live a green life and to save money. Most of the time, those two actually go hand in hand and you can do both at the same time! So why not write about two things I am passionate about? I love sharing it with other people, but sometimes it is hard to find people who are on the same wavelength. So I’ll try casting my net wider other than to those I see in person day to day.

There is a gazillion little things I’ve tried to be earth-friendly with, some have been big successes, and others have been total flops! I’ll say that most of these things end up saving me money, but that doesn’t mean that I’ll totally forgo something just because it costs a bit more. If its worth it, I’ll do it because I believe that every little bit counts. From buying a hybrid, to just changing my mindset and habits, one person can make an impact!

So here goes!