Reader Favorites: Greener Cleaning Products

Greener Cleaning Products | Freckled Italian

The other day I mentioned on Instagram Stories that I was trying to swap out some of my conventional cleaning products for ones that were a little greener--I was cleaning our master bathroom and about to put Sophie down for a nap (she sleeps in our bedroom still) and I was suddenly very aware of how chemical-y and harsh the spray I was using smelled.

As usual, I asked you guys for your favorite products and I got a ton of great recommendations! A lot of you asked me to share them, and since I haven't been able to try them all out yet I thought I might as well go ahead and share the ones that came up most often so you could also get started on finding some better brands, if you're interested.

You can click through the widget above, but here are the links as well:

What are some of your favorite, more natural cleaning products for your home? I'm not trying to make my own or go 100% natural (whatever that means!), but I am really interested in cutting down on some of the more toxic ingredients in my cleaning products (and hair and makeup products as well, but that's another post) now that Sophie is starting to crawl around and put everything in her mouth! I'd love to hear what you use, so let me know!

This post contains affiliate links.

Some Things You May Not Know About Me #13

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I'm pretty bad at keeping a secret--if you tell me a secret I'll keep it for you, but if I buy you a gift or plan something as a surprise I'll almost always tell you about it before it happens because I get too excited about it.

We get In N Out for dinner every Sunday night and it's become one of my favorite family traditions. Rob goes to get it while I'm putting Sophie down and then we eat at the coffee table and watch whatever show it is we're currently binging (right now it's Modern Family). My order is a 3x2 protein style with grilled onions and chilis. I look forward to it every week.

I really, truly thought I had a gluten intolerance for years but then I got pregnant and ate a lot of bread. I probably eat gluten every other day now and I feel just fine--I have no idea what happened.

I want to get rid of 98% of my clothes and just start over. For the past few years I've been getting rid of stuff but I haven't been super great about replacing them, so now I have a bunch of stuff that's either super old or doesn't fit. I hate spending money on clothes but I think a pretty major shopping spree is in my future.

I'm way too emotionally invested in the rose bush we have in our backyard. I have literally killed an air plant so I am super excited that this bush, which had roses on it when we first came to see the house, bloomed again this spring. I know it has nothing to do with me but I just assumed it would die since I live here now.

I can't stop listening to Johnathan Van Ness' podcast. ANYONE ELSE?

Kosher Salt On the Counter

Kosher Salt on the Counter | Freckled Italian

A thing I only recently learned how to do is keep my house mostly clean--most of the time. I have a little calendar on the fridge with one thing to do per day: on Monday I tidy up the office and dinner table that we never sit at, on Tuesday I deep clean the kitchen, Wednesdays are for cleaning the bathrooms, Thursday all the trash goes out and I restock diapers and toilet paper and soap, and on Friday I vacuum and sweep the whole house. On Saturdays I dust everything and on Sunday we change the sheets and catch up on laundry. I was never much good at keeping my house in order before I had a baby, so I'm not sure why I thought it'd come naturally once she arrived--I guess when imagining the majority of my time being spent at home, I hoped at least some of it would be focused on cleaning and organizing.

My mom, however, is so good at keeping the space around her clean and organized that sometimes I don't even realize she's doing it until it's done. Our house is never cleaner than when she comes to visit, and on top of cleaning the kitchen as soon as we're done cooking, she always manages to find a certain corner or closet that needs work and completely reorganize it in a way that makes more sense and usually sticks for at least a few months. So the last time she left California, our house was sparkly from the ceiling to the floor and I decided that dammit, I was going to keep it that way.

All of this is to say that last Tuesday I was wiping down the counters and running the dishwasher and I noticed that our salt was running low. As I refilled it, I had one of those moments where you wonder who else does this? I keep kosher salt on the counter in a ramekin because that's what my mom does, and I remember growing up and going to other people's houses and being in their kitchens and not always noticing the salt like that--in a ceramic dish, by the stove, easily accessible no matter what you're cooking.

Of course it's not really about salt, is it--it's about parenting, deciding what your family will and won't do and which traditions or habits to keep and which ones to leave behind. It’s about creating a family of your own. I love it.

My mom and brother and I always used to drink mate from Argentina every morning out of a traditional gourd, but over the years we stopped and now in my own house, Rob and I make a latte every morning pretty much no matter what. As I stood in my kitchen on that sunny day with the spring breeze coming in through the windows, I couldn't help but think of Sophie all grown up--maybe refilling her own ramekin of kosher salt--smelling freshly ground coffee wherever she may be and thinking of her mom in that California kitchen, turning on the espresso machine in the corner by the window.

Wishing you a happy Mother's Day weekend, wherever you may be. Feeling overwhelmingly grateful to be part of the club this year.