Thursday, June 14, 2012

DIY and frugal flop

Making your own and doing it yourself are mainstays of any frugal lifestyle.  Money Saving Mom frequently posts DIY projects she has attempted and their results.  I already make several cleaners and do a lot of cooking from scratch.  Still, there's always room for growth and improvement, for trying new things. 

So...being the list-making nerd that I am, I have a list of things I want to try to do/make myself.  Sourdough bread was on that list, and I have to say I'm very proud of my efforts in this department.  We gone through multiple batches of bread in the last few months.  Within the next couple of weeks, I want to try making yogurt (I've put this off waaaaay too long).  And on and on goes the list.

Today I decided to try something that wasn't on the list.  Maybe the spontaneity of it was my first mistake; I don't know.  Maybe it was just a stupid project to start with; I'll let you decide.

You know those disinfectant wipes they sell in stores?  Sort of wet wipes for cleaning.  They're overpriced, they're wasteful, they create too much garbage...but they're awfully darn convenient.  Sometimes when you just want to do a quick wipe down of the bathroom sink or the toilet, they come in handy.  I rarely buy them (because let's face it, a cloth and spray bottle work just as well, without all the drawbacks). 

But I do like them.  I had an empty container lying around from the last time I had bought them and I thought, "Why not make my own..." 

Paper towels are another things I rarely purchase.  I read somewhere that the average family goes through two rolls of paper towels a week.  Even back in my heavy paper towel usage days, I never went through more than a roll in a month.  But several months ago, I just quit buying paper towels altogether and started just using cloths.  Other than when microwaving bacon, I found that I didn't miss them. 

I can't remember what prompted me to buy a roll of paper towels a few weeks ago.  I'm so out of the habit of using them though, that almost the full roll is still on the holder.  Still, they're nice paper towels--the thick Viva ones.  They would make good cleaning wipes, right? 

Um...maybe not. 

Everything went wrong with this little experiment.  The towels are so wonderfully think that they won't go through the opening of the wipes container.  I didn't make the solution right.  It's too soapy, so when I try to wipe down the counter or whatever, I end up having to follow up with a cloth anyway to clear off the soapy mess.  That sort of defeat the purpose.  And the towels themselves are kind of falling into tatters.  Gross--and not helpful at all. 

I know there is a way to make your own cleaning wipes--I've seen blog posts reference it.  But at this point, I'm so frustrated with the whole thing that I doubt I'll bother.  A cloth and a spray bottle are looking pretty good at the moment.  :-p 

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