Homemade Wrinkle Releaser

I don’t like to iron. I sold my ironing board on Craigslist three or four years ago when I bought a steamer because I never used the ironing board. I bought a steamer because I used to work at a clothing department, was able to master using one without burning myself, and found it to be an easy and pretty fast way to get wrinkles out of a wide variety of fabrics without worrying about ruining them. Whenever I do laundry I fold what needs to be put in drawers, hang what needs to be hung up, and then move on with my day, telling myself that I will steam the clothes later. And then I forget. And then I do more laundry, and put off the steaming, and do more laundry, and put off the steaming – and everything eventually backs up.

As I was looking at the line of laundry to steam in my closet, I remembered seeing this awesome tip, and thought it would be worth a try. It is a recipe for homemade wrinkle releaser.

Here’s how you make it:

1 tsp. fabric softener and 1 cup water – mix it together in a spray bottle, and you are good to go!

Super easy. I actually doubled it because my water bottle was pretty large and I didn’t want to have to make it again too soon if it worked. And notice how shiny my Pyrex is? It still makes me smile. Back to the spray…

Take your finished product……

…….and find something wrinkly. Like this shirt:

You can see why this was in the steaming line. HAHA. Oh dear. Before you spray, check the label of your fabric softener to see if there are fabrics that you shouldn’t use it with (or check the label of your clothes). I just am paranoid about little stain drops on my clothes. I haven’t had any problems with it leaving stains at all, but I just thought I’d pass that on. When you’re sure your shirt is good to go, just give a good spray wherever there are wrinkles.

I still need to adjust my spray bottle, apparently, but you get the idea. After it is sprayed, you can either give it a good shake, or pull on the fabric a bit to start getting some of the wrinkles out. Then you hang it up and wait for it to dry. This is where you need to plan a little time in, unless you’re good with wearing something that is a bit damp. Or quite damp, like my lovely spray bottle got this shirt.

Here is the finished product:

Wow! That is definitely an improvement. It is ready to wear. Not perfect, but much better than before. I would say that the steamer really wouldn’t get it much better than this, and this is quick and easy. Spray. That’s it. Here is a close-up of a spot that still had some minor wrinkles:

I can live with that. I’ll probably still pull the steamer out for times that it really matters to have clothes that look nice and wrinkle-free, but honestly if you sit down or fold your arms wrong, you take a nice wrinkle-free outfit and give it some wrinkle love anyway. This is a good alternative when you don’t feel like taking the time to steam or iron, and have a long line of clothes ahead of you.

Happy spraying!

Glasses, Like NEW

My wonderful mother-in-law read my post on the homemade detergent, where I commented that I had hoped that the detergent would magically take the water stains off of my glasses (which it didn’t, sadly), and called and shared a tip with me.

She and I both got our sets of glasses right around the same time. When she bought hers, it was to replace a set that had gotten very badly water stained over the last couple of years. Ours were our first set of true glasses (after 7 years of marriage….). This was a little over two years ago. As a little “after” picture before the “before” picture, here is the good news of how things ended up when I was done cleaning the glasses:

And here is what they looked like BEFORE I was able to get them clean:

Yikes. Hard water is awesome, right? This is why I was hoping the detergent would be magical. This weekend, my mother-in-law decided to try and tinker around with things to see if she could salvage her glasses before buying a new set, and called me with her good news: she’d found it!

Here is all you need: some Lemi Shine and a Magic Eraser.

That’s it. Lemi Shine can be found near your dishwasher detergents at your local Target, Walmart, etc. It runs around $3.77 or so for a container.

Step 1: Fill your sink with water (lukewarm) and sprinkle in some Lemi Shine. I just filled the water up until the Lemi Shine granules I had sprinkled in were all dissolved. It was deep enough to cover maybe a third or half of each glass when laid down on its side.

Step 2: Roll the glass around in the water. I then just took a washcloth and rubbed inside and outside of the glass with the Lemi Shine water. This step alone was enough to get my glasses clean.

Look at that!!

Step 3: Scrub the Lemi Shine water off with dishsoap and water, and dry with a dish towel. Lemi Shine appears to be made of all-natural ingredients, so you may be okay with skipping this step. I personally don’t mind rinsing and soaping off something that calls itself a dish detergent booster, even with natural ingredients.

They look BRAND NEW!!! Hooray!!! Here is a reminder of what the glasses looked like before, next to what they look like now:

Wow. This is a VERY easy fix to something that was a big problem before.

I have some Pyrex and other glassware that had gotten water stained, but that I have had for almost nine years now and had some more stubborn stains to remove. Here is where the Magic Eraser comes in –

Step 4: While your stubborn glasses/glassware are in the Lemi Shine water, use a Magic Eraser to scrub some of the Lemi Shine water onto the stubborn spots. Here is a ring on the bottom of one of my Pyrex measuring cups. I have tried for YEARS to get this ring gone.

After a dip in the Lemi Shine bath, and a scrub with the Magic Eraser it is………

CLEAN!!!!! I am so happy! Aren’t mothers-in-law wonderful? Thank you so much for the tip!

Fluffy (and Stink-Free) Towels

For any of you who have had towels or washcloths over time that have lost their fluff, or have gotten something of a mildewy smell – try this tip.

This is something that we do every time I do a load of towels. It works so well. I had a friend who had mentioned it, and thought I would give it a try. It is great, and is a cheap fix. Over time as you are using your towels, residue builds up on them causing them to lose fluffiness. Using dryer sheets can also add to the residue problem. And over time having something be wet consistently will cause it to be stinky. I think we’ve all been the unfortunate user of a stinky towel or washcloth, be it ours or someone else’s. This will take care of that problem.

Enter stage left: vinegar. That’s it.

Load your washer up with towels, and then instead of detergent pour in 1 cup of vinegar (or 2 cups, if your towels need some more help) and run it through a normal wash cycle. The vinegar will kill the yuckies and get your towels clean. When you stick them in the dryer, do not use a dryer sheet (or fabric softener in the wash) – this will start your film problem all over again. By nature of it being a towel, you don’t really have to worry much about static anyway since whatever is using it will be wet. Just sayin’.

When they are dry, you will have fluffy, fresh-smelling towels again. Hooray! Happy fluffing! :)

Homemade Dishwasher Detergent

I found this dishwasher detergent, and decided it would be worth a try.


1 c. Washing Soda (NOT baking soda – this can be found in the laundry aisle)

1 c. Borax (again, found in the laundry aisle)

1/2 c. Kosher Salt (the original site had used iodized, but recommended Kosher)

4 packets lemon Kool-Aid


Dump all ingredients into a bowl and mix. Make sure to crush all of the lumps out. I found it was very easy to do with a fork.

Admire your handiwork. Pretty.

Find a suitable air-tight container to store it in. It only takes up 2 1/2 cups worth of space, so the container does not have to be large. I also had an extra 1/2 T. measuring spoon, so I stuck that in there as well.

You’re done! Congratulations – you just made your own dishwasher detergent. Put 1 T. (or 2 T. for heavily soiled loads) into your dishwasher and wash away.

I found this to work well – it seemed to clean everything well, and did not leave a residue. AND EVERYTHING WAS SHINY!! Woo hoo! I was kind of secretly hoping that it would magically take the hard water stains off of my glasses that have been accumulating for a couple of years, but alas. I’ll have to hunt down that tip another day. They looked shiny though….even with the water stains.

Also, if you are considering making this, but don’t currently have washing soda or Borax – there seem to be a TON of things you can do with them. Like make your own dishwashing detergent. :) It seems to be a good investment.

***Since this post, I have tried this detergent a few times. The first time it worked fantastically well. The second time, not so much. The third time I used half of this detergent, and half Lemi-shine, and that seemed to work well. This is a work in progress.

Easy-Peasy Sand Remover

We have a turtle sandbox in our backyard and I love it. Mostly.

I love that it is an easy place for kids to go and have fun digging without digging up our backyard. I love that it seems to be a little refuge for my two-year old to go when her brothers are on the trampoline and she can’t get on.

But I don’t love the mess that can get tracked in. My five-year old loves to make little puddles in the sandbox to make wet sand, which is fun, but wet sand gets very stuck on little hands and feet.

I saw a tip on Pinterest with how to get sand off of your kids easily, and thought I would give it a try. I looked around for the original source, and was able to find this on ehow.com.

Enter the magic cure: Baby Powder. (Cue Heavenly Chorus.) This is AWESOME! I was a little skeptical, but it works amazingly well. You just take a little baby powder in the palm of your hand, rub it on sandy feet or hands, and the sand comes right off. I seriously was cackling in my backyard when I tried it the first time because it exceeded my expectations.

My two-year old is a little independent, so she would rather that I sprinkle it on her hands and feet, and then she rubs it on herself. I usually try and “help” as much as I can sneak in.

See? All clean. This is with no water, no nothin’ but baby powder. Awesome. This one is a keeper.

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