Who Are Your Bed Fellows?

As if I don’t have enough obsessions, we can now officially add one more to the list… Dust Mites (Bed Bugs or whatever you want to call them). Ick. We have Oregon Dad and “Squeaky Green, The Method Guide to Detoxing Your Home” to thank for this latest addition to my (already abundant) compulsions.

I was given this green manual for Mother’s Day. Hubby claims to have had a momentary twinge of conscious at gifting me with a cleaning book for Mums Day… I am sure it passed quickly 🙂 I had pointed out the book on an outing one day… he remembered and got it for me. We must give credit where it’s due because I never want things…. which makes gift giving a bit difficult for him. 🙂

Back to mites. Just thinking about them gives me the heebies. I read the entire manual on Sunday. Hubby told me to pace myself. I advised that this is the kind of book one reads through, then returns to often for reference. So, no worries, it won’t be meeting the recycling bin anytime soon (or making its way to a new home).

Sections 1 and 2 grossed me out plenty… thinking about all the things my kids are crawling around with on the floor. Ew. Ew. Ew. The Skoy cloths in the kitchen went into the microwave for the second time today and the scrubby brush came out of the sink and went into a bowl of boiling water. It was section three (sleeping with the enemy) that threw me for a loop… dust mites, bed bugs and dead skin cells. All the icky things hanging out in your sheets, pillows, blankets, mattress and lurking in the dark corners under your bed.

It’s not like I have never heard of this stuff before. I’ve just never had it presented in this perspective before. Every morning I wake up stuffy nosed with itchy eyes and blame it on allergies. It probably is allergies… to DUST MITES. Gross. I don’t want to think about tiny bugs living in my pillows, mattress and covers. To top it off, this book goes one step further and explains how they feast on all the dead skin cells that lurk in your dust bunnies under the bed. Bleh.

Today’s mission is to clean out every unessential item lurking in my bedroom. Every little thing that is under the bed. I am getting rid of all the books I will never read again, old papers and magazines… whatever is hanging out under there collecting dust. I am vacuuming the heck out of every corner of the carpet (don’t even get me started on the carpet… I’ve been dieing to replace it with marmoleum or bamboo for months, must.save.the.green.first.) Before I can tackle all that vacuuming, I must get my machine up to par (since I cannot yet replace it with a Halo -kills everything with an ultraviolet light… yippee to no bugs???) So, that means taking the darn thing apart (outside to protect our indoor breathing air… don’t get me started on that!), replace the HEPA filter and use my blow dryer to clean out all the dust particles lurking inside. Luckily this isn’t a frequent requirement… since I have done it exactly, NEVER, its probably something I should tackle. Once the vacuum is clean, the nether regions known as under the bed are clear and every corner of my carpet is sucked clear of dust mites and all the things they feast on… then I must strip my bed, wash the linens and vacuum my mattress. Wondering if sticking the pillows in the dryer might be a good idea as well. I found these organic cotton dust mite pillow covers online… must order now. And a mattress cover as well… remember cost per use factors in and when you divide this price over its lifetime, it’s not too bad, especially when you can sleep free of thinking about little mites feasting on your skin and dancing in your hair. *shivers* So many things to do. Must make a list. I am such a type A… and I want to do everything right this instant. My list is in process. I am starting with my bedroom… then moving on to the kids rooms, one at a time. Then I will tackle the living room, kitchen and other living areas. As if I need more to do… now I am haunted every time I sit down or close my eyes by the thought of what is lurking in my home. Ew. And Geeze Oh Pete don’t use antibacterial cleaners… we don’t need to kill… we need to clean. Evidently OFTEN.

This really put a whole new perspective on things for me. I have been obsessed with getting the chemicals out of our house. And I have done good. *Pats self on back* We are switching to soy based candles with lead free wicks to clear the air, opening windows for frequent ventilation and adding house plants. I hadn’t even started to think about the need for clearing dust mites and itsy bitsy microbes that might be hanging out in the kitchen (okay, yes I have thought about it… but now I am going crazy thinking about it!) Oh… and as if I didn’t love this book, here is a reason to. Evidently the authors detest chlorine bleach as much as I. They talk about it several times (in an non-endearing way). Did you know, that for bleach to sanitize it must stay on the (pre-cleaned) surface for 30 minutes! What busy mom has time to clean the counter, spray it down and then not touch it or allow anything to touch it for 30 minutes! Then you gotta dry it completely or you’re asking to have bacteria start growing in the moisture.

Just get the book and clean your house. Then we can all be squeaky green and a bit healthier. (I just like the sound of that… say it with me, “squeaky green”… that’s the real reason I wanted the book.)

Today’s Green Tip- Change your air filters… it increases efficiency of your furnaces and improves indoor air quality.


About PolkaDotMommy

Wife to a teacher extraordinaire... Mama to Five littles... Conservative Catholic Christian with a Strong Environmentalist Mentality... Respecting Life... Living for our Savior... Learning to trust God in all things.
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2 Responses to Who Are Your Bed Fellows?

  1. asdmommy says:

    LOL – I think you are my long lost twin. 🙂 I’m a bit anal about that stuff too. Bleach has been banished from our house for years. I just keep a spray bottle of vinegar and water for the quick clean-up. And have a great recipe for tube/tile cleaner (b.soda, vinegar, water, soap) that I use while I’m actually taking a shower. LOVE that. You probably have something like that too. It feels so good to do all this stuff – everyone who comes in my house says it smells so fresh and clean, and I love that there are really few chemicals here to speak of. I do still use sanitizing wipes in the bathroom (I’m surrounded by boys!).

    Anyhooo….thanks for the giggle today.

  2. I use the “Four Thieves” recipe for antibacterial areas… like the bathroom. Try it and you’ll NEVER go back to those wipes. Bonus… it smells wonderful and you can grow the herbs in your kitchen window. Make 2 batches the first time so you always have one “stewing”.

    Place a about a palm full each of lavender, sage, rosemary, mint and rue into a large (quart size jar). Cover all of this completely with apple cider vinegar (organic is the preferred choice to ensure chemical free). Screw the lid on tightly and allow this mixture to sit for about 6 weeks… this is the hard part. Then strain the mix… easiest by using a typical canning lid with cheesecloth on top of the jar. Place the strained fluid into a spray bottle (label as homemade antibacterial solution) and go to work! This is great for around the toilets, sinks, etc… spray it… let it sit for about a half hour while doing the rest of your cleaning then go back and dry the area. You can also make your own wipes by using some cheesecloth squares cut into 6×6 pieces (or desired size) saturate in solution and place in sealed container or zippie bag. Bonus… you can wash and reuse!

    Tea Tree Oil is another fave for helping to sanitize in the kitchen… spray the cleaned counter tops with a vinegar and water solution and wipe down. Then spritz with a Tea Tree solution (2 c. water to 1 Tb. Tea Tree Oil) and allow to sit for about 30 minutes. Dry area.

    Happy (and Healthy Cleaning!)

    Oh… and did I mention how glad I am that I’m not alone in my crazies here! Lol.

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