Green Studio

Monthly Events Calendar

Green Yoga in Practice

  Green Courses and Activities 

What you can do

*   Use green cleaning products

*   Conserve water

*   Conserve electricity

*   Buy local food (or grow your own!)

*   Reduce waste

Refer to the Environmental Change-Makers website for more information

We would like to encourage you to gradually eliminate toxic chemicals from your cabinets and thereby from our ocean. Excessive packaging ends up in the landfill or requires more energy to be recycled into something else. Vote with your dollars for cleaner alternatives.

 Here are some tips to start a phase-out of the worst offenders:

Do your best to avoid purchasing bleach, ammonia, harsh cleaners, Ajax, Comet, Kleenex brand tissues, and disposable plates, cups and silverware.

Also be aware of products in excessive packaging that cannot be reused. Buy 100% post-consumer waste toilet paper.

Cut down on the number of cleaning products you purchase. Use phosphate-free detergent to avoid toxins in the waterways.

 Ready to go another level? Now skip buying Borax, Bon Ami, furniture polish and paper towels! (If you really need them, buy 100% post-consumer waste facial tissues and paper towels.)


Try out some of the safe, effective and cost-effective alternatives…

STEP ONE: Prepare a spray bottle containing 1 part distilled white vinegar to 4 parts water. Vinegar disinfects and breaks up dirt. You will be amazed at its many uses. And  you can buy a gallon for around $4 in the grocery store!

KITCHEN

 SURFACES

*      Use your vinegar spray bottle.

 REFRIGERATOR

*      To clean interior and enamel-finished exterior walls, dissolve 2 tablespoons of baking soda in 1 quart of warm water and wipe all surfaces. For stubborn spots, rub with baking  soda paste. Be sure to rinse with a clean, wet cloth. This no-scratch method works for the stove top and other appliance surfaces.

*      To clean a stainless steel exterior, dissolve 2 tablespoons of baking soda in 1 quart of water. Wipe on and rinse thoroughly.

 OVEN

*      Use your vinegar spray bottle. Spray on cool oven surface. Use baking soda on stubborn spots.

*      Make a scrubbing paste of baking soda, salt and water. Use a fine steel wool if  necessary.

*      While the oven is still warm, sprinkle water on a spill and then sprinkle some salt or  baking soda. When cool, scrape and wipe.

 SINK

*      Drain cleaner #1 (light): Mix ½ cup salt in 4 liters of water. Heat (but not to a boil) and pour down the drain.  

*      Drain cleaner #2 (for metal plumbing only): Pour ½ cup baking soda down the drain or disposal, followed by 1 cup of white vinegar. Allow the mixture to foam for several  minutes before flushing the drain with a gallon of boiling water. For slow drains, use this  drain cleaner once a week to keep drains fresh and clog-free. (Note: do not use this  method after trying a commercial drain opener; the vinegar can react with the drain  opener to cause dangerous fumes.)

 GARBAGE DISPOSAL

*      To eliminate odors as well as to clean and sharpen blades, grind ice and used lemon and/or orange rinds until pulverized.

 POTS & PANS

*      Use baking soda and apple cider vinegar to clean baked-on food. The baking soda  provides grit for scrubbing and fizzes with the vinegar to speed up cleaning time.

*      Burned and crusted-on food: Soak or boil a solution of 2 tablespoons of baking soda per quart of water in each pan. Let stand until particles are loosened, then wash as usual.  To cut grease: Add 1 to 2 teaspoons of baking soda to the soaking water.

 DISHES

*      Drinking glasses: Occasionally soak drinking glasses in a solution of vinegar and water  to get them clean and sparkling.

*      Cut a lemon in half and sprinkle baking soda on the cut section. Use it to scrub dishes and pots (or surfaces).

 AIR FRESHENER

*      Baking soda or vinegar with lemon juice in small dishes absorbs odors around the house.

*      Having houseplants helps reduce odors in the home.

CLOTHES WASHING MACHINE

*      Add ½ cup of baking soda to the wash when you add your liquid detergent. The baking soda absorbs odor and makes whites whiter and brights brighter. In the rinse cycle, it acts as a fabric softener.

*      Use vinegar in the rinse cycle as a natural fabric softener. (It breaks down detergent much better than regular fabric softener.)

*      For sour towels, use a small amount (1/8 cup) of hydrogen peroxide in the bleach dispenser of the washing machine. (Don’t pour directly on fabric.)

*      Lemon juice acts as a natural bleaching agent. Put lemon juice on white clothing and linens and allow them to dry in the sun. Stains will be bleached away.

*      Dry your clothes outdoors on a line or rack.

 TRASH CANS

*      Always place a recycle container beside the garbage can. The convenience will encourage recycling.

*      Avoid using plastic liners whenever possible.

 ANTS

*      Follow the trail of the ants to determine where they are getting in. Seal the holes.

*      Wipe surfaces with your vinegar spray bottle so ants can’t follow their trail.

*      Peppermint or cinnamon oil (cheap brand is fine) will keep them away.

*      Sprinkle turmeric in their path.

 NOTE: Powdered baking soda can be sprinkled over a small kitchen fire to extinguish it.

BATHROOM

 SHOWER/TUB

*      To clean stainless steel, chrome, fiberglass, ceramic, porcelain or enamel fixtures, dissolve 2 tablespoons of baking soda in 1 quart of water. Wipe on fixtures and rinse.

*      Metal shower head: To remove deposits which may be clogging your metal shower head, combine ½ cup white vinegar and 1 quart water in a pot. Submerge the shower head and boil for 15 minutes.

*      Plastic shower head: Combine 1 pint of white vinegar and 1 pint of hot water. Completely submerge the shower head and soak for about an hour.

*      Scouring powder: Mix 1 cup baking soda and ¼ cup vinegar in a small bowl. Rub on surface with damp sponge. Let stand for a few minutes. Rinse well.

*      For Mold: Mix one part hydrogen peroxide (3%) with two parts water in a spray bottle. Spray on areas with mold. Wait at least an hour before rinsing or using shower.

*      Remove lime deposit stains on shower stall panels with this all-purpose cleaner:

o        Mix ½ cup vinegar and ¼ cup baking soda into ½ gallon (2 liters) of water.

o        This cleaner also works on chrome fixtures, windows and mirrors.

*      To soften hard lime deposits around faucets, cover the deposits with a vinegar-soaked towel. Leave the towels on for about an hour before cleaning.

*      Rust stains: Apply full-strength vinegar or lemon juice and let stand until spot disappears. Repeat if necessary.

 TOILET

*      Dump vinegar in toilet at night. Scrub in the morning.

*      To clean and deodorize, sprinkle baking soda into the bowl, then squirt with vinegar and scour with toilet brush.

*      Mix liquid castile soap and baking soda, scrub with toilet brush.

 SINK

*      To clean porcelain surfaces, rub with cream of tartar sprinkled on a damp cloth.

*      See drain cleaners in Kitchen section.

 MIRRORS

*      Use newspaper or a microfiber towel instead of paper towels!

*      See all-purpose cleaner recipe under Shower/Tub section above.

*      Use your vinegar spray bottle.

*      Add the juice of half a lemon to 2 cups of water in a spray bottle.

*      Mix ½ cup cornstarch into 2 quarts of warm water. Apply with a sponge and wipe with an absorbent cloth or towel.

*      Note: You are more likely to get streaks if you wash windows when the sun is beating on them.

*      No-steak glass cleaner: Mix ¼ cup white vinegar and 1 tablespoon cornstarch into 1 quart of warm water. Apply with a sponge or spray bottle. Wipe dry with newspaper or microfiber towel.

 GROUT

*      Use your vinegar spray bottle.

*      Measure 3 cups of baking soda into a medium-sized bowl and add 1 cup of warm water. Mix into a smooth paste and scrub into grout with a sponge or toothbrush. Rinse thoroughly.

 MEDICINE CABINET

*      To cool a sunburn, apply vinegar.

*      Use apple cider vinegar as a hair rinse and detangler.

 FURNITURE

*      Use your vinegar spray bottle with a microfiber towel. It picks up germs and bacteria. (Note that microfiber towels work best damp.)

*      Mix up this polish fresh each time you need it: Mix the juice of 1 lemon with a teaspoon of olive oil and a teaspoon of water. Apply a thin coat on your wood surface and let sit for five minutes. Use a soft cloth to buff to a deep shine.

*      Mix 2 parts olive oil with 1 part lemon juice. Apply mixture to furniture with a soft cloth and wipe it dry.

*      Hide scratches in wood by rubbing with the meat of a walnut.

 FLOORS

 FLOOR MATS AND DOOR MATS

*      Use floor mats and door mats to keep dirt from being tracked in.

 WOOD

*      Mix ¼ cup olive oil and ¼ cup vinegar into 1 gallon of water. Apply and wipe clean.

 LINOLEUM

*      A pencil eraser removes scuff marks from a floor.

 CARPET

*      Soak a spot on the carpet immediately with club soda and blot until the stain is gone.

*      To remove grease spots from carpet, first absorb any excess with a sponge. Then rub a liberal amount of baking soda or cornstarch into the spot. Let it sit overnight. Remove the excess and vacuum.

*      Rub a potato on soiled carpet. Then wash with mild soap and water.

 MISC

*      Soften hard paint brushes in hot vinegar for a few minutes. Wash in soap and warm water and let dry.

*      To remove price tag stickers, sponge vinegar over them several times, wait 15 minutes, then rub them off.

 Suggestions:

*      Use a re-usable microfiber towel. They are designed to lift dirt and dust without the need for cleaning products. Wash them in the washing machine. A good quality cloth can last for several years.

*      Use compostable sponges.

*      Use handkerchiefs instead of tissues.

Dispose of household hazardous waste appropriately:

Playa del Rey: HYPERION TREATMENT PLANT

7660 West Imperial Highway, Gate B, Playa Del Rey, CA 90293

Hours of Operation: Saturdays and Sundays, 9:00 am–3:00 pm

RESOURCES:

www.naturalstep.org

www.organicconsumers.org

www.envirochangemakers.org

The Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Center Los Angeles reserves the right to substitute speakers or rearrange events if necessary. All of the listed speakers are confirmed at this time, bu should any be unable to attend, for any reason, the Center  will provide substitute speakers and/or topics. The views of each speaker are personal, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the International Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Centers.

Copyright © 2011 Sivananda Yoga Vedanta Center - Los Angeles