DIY Hand Sanitizer, Disinfectant Spray and Wipes

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I absolutely love DIY projects. Being broke most of my life has forced me to look for ways to save money and making my own items helps so much. Not to mention they are usually healthier and cruelty-free.

I thought these, in particular, would be of use coping with the current pandemic.

I scoured the internet and composed the following. I hope they are helpful.

Ingredients you will need:

Disinfectant

Note: CDC recommends at least 60% Rubbing Alcohol to kill Coronavirus. 

CDC(1) and Rudgers (4) recommend three basic disinfectants for use against COVID-19.

If using a 60% Alcohol base, and mixing with aloe then it lowers the percentage of alcohol. Therefore it is recommended by one of my herbalist teachers, Jessica @Blackbird’s Daughter Botanicals to begin with a 99% Alcohol base. Click here for her recipes, (including a throat soothing tea!)

If all the stores are out, and you can’t find Alcohol, then you may want to use the following but remember that it isn’t recommended by the CDC for killing COVD-19.

Vinegar is an antibacterial agent that kills 99% of bacteria.

3% Hydrogen Peroxide oxides bacteria causing it to decompose.

Alcohol-Based Witch Hazel

140 proof or higher drinkable grain alcohols (not recommended for use on skin)

Bleach (not recommended for use on skin)

Essential Oils

These are optional and people usually add for scent, but many essential oils have antibacterial properties. If using a disinfectant that isn’t recommended by the CDC, then I would suggest adding one of the following for an extra boost of germ killers!

Tea Tree, Lavender, Geranium, Eucalyptus, Cinnamon, Thyme, and Peppermint Essential oils are all Antibacterial, Antiviral and Antifungal.

Lemon and Orange Essential oils are Antiseptic, Antifungal and Antiviral.

Skin Softeners

To keep your hands from drying out or getting irritated, use one of the following in your hand sanitizer and use gloves when working with your disinfectant sprays, cleaners, and wipes.

Aloe Vera Gel or liquid

Glycerin

Vitamin E

Recipes

Hand Sanitizers

1/3 cup of aloe vera or glycerine, 2/3 cup of alcohol and 8-10 drops of essential oil

or

3 TB alcohol, 1 TB aloe, 1/2 tsp glycerin, few drops essential oil

or

6 TB alcohol, 2 TB aloe, 5 drops vitamin E oil, 8-10 essential oil

or

1 cup 60% (or higher) alcohol, 1 TB peroxide, 1 TB, glycerin or aloe, boiled/distilled water, enough to make mixture 1 1/3 cup

or

5 oz aloe vera gel, 1 oz witch hazel, 8 to 10 drops of any 8-10 drops essential oil.

Mix and put into a suitable container. Use when handwashing with soap isn’t available.

Hand Sanitizer Sprays

1/2 tsp glycerin, 20 drops tea tree, 10 spruce essential oil, 6 lemon essential oil, 3-4 TB alcohol

or

10 drops of tea tree essential oil and 1 teaspoon castile soap in 6 ounces water.

Mix and put into spray bottle to carry with you. Use when handwashing with soap isn’t available.

Disinfectant Sprays and Cleaners

Notes: Vinegar should not be used on granite or marble because the acid may etch the surface, Bleach and Peroxide may discolor fabric and carpet

Caution! Never mix ammonia or other cleaning product or cleanser with bleach! Also, Vinegar and hydrogen peroxide should not be combined in a single container as they make a peracetic acid which can be hazardous. Instead, add undiluted white vinegar to one spray bottle and 3% hydrogen peroxide to another.

To Use: Spray on surface to disinfect, let sit for 10 minutes, wipe away with wet cloth.

1/2 Cup White Vinegar
1/2 Cup 70% Rubbing Alcohol
1 Cup Boiled/Distilled Water
5 Drops Lemon Essential Oil
5 Drops Lavender Essential Oil

or

2/3 cup high-proof vodka
1/2 cup white distilled vinegar
3/4 cup distilled water
30–40 drops tea tree essential oil
30–40 drops lemongrass essential oil

or

1 1/4 cups water
1/4 cup white vinegar
1/4 cup Alcohol
15 drops peppermint + lemon OR lavender + lemon

or

3/4 cup distilled water
1/4 cup white vinegar
7 drops lavender essential oil
7 drops tea tree essential oil

or

¾ Cup of Water
¼ Cup of Witch Hazel
10 Drops Tea Tree Essential Oil
5 Drops Eucalyptus Essential Oil

or

1 ¼ Cup Water
¼ Cup White Vinegar
¼ Cup Vodka
15 Drops Peppermint or Lemon Essential Oil

or

¾ Cup Borax
1 Cup White Vinegar
10 Drops Lavender Essential Oil
5 Drops Lemon Essential Oil

or

10-30 drops of thyme essential oil or another essential oil of your choice into an 8- ounce spray bottle. Add 1 ounce of rubbing alcohol, then fill the spray bottle up with water until it reaches the top. Shake to mix

or

1/4 cup 3% hydrogen peroxide
1 cup of water

or

4 teaspoons household bleach
1-quart water

Floor Cleaning Disinfectant Recipe
2 Cups Warm Water
½ Cup White Vinegar
¼ Cup Rubbing Alcohol
3 Drops Dish Soap
5-10 Drops Essential Oil of choice, such as Tea Tree Oil

or

1/3 cup of bleach
1 gallon of cold water

Disinfectant Wipes:

If you want to make disinfectant wipes rather than a spray, you can follow the same recipe but instead of putting the ingredients in a spray bottle, put them instead in a large glass jar or other container, and swirl them to combine. Cut 10-15 pieces of cloth in 10-inch squares and place them inside the container of cleaner.
Press down the cloths so that they are submerged and can soak up the cleaner.

or

1 Cup Boiled/Distilled Water
1 Cup Vinegar
½ Cup Alcohol
15 Drops Lemon Essential Oil
8 Drops Lavender Essential Oil
4 Drops Bergamot Essential Oil
1 Mason Jar
15-20 Pieces of Pre-Cut Cloth or Small Washcloths

or

1 cup water
1/4 cup rubbing alcohol
1 tsp. Dawn dish soap
2 Tbsp. ammonia (optional)

or

1 cup warm filtered or distilled water
1 tablespoon liquid Castile soap
1/2 cup rubbing alcohol
5 drops tea tree essential oil, optional
5 drops lavender essential oil, optional

Recipes I used in the picture above: Hand sanitizer, 1/3 cup glycerin, 2/3 cup 91% Rubbing Alcohol (I was lucky to have some left!) 6 drops Lemon Oil and 4 drops Tea Tree Oil, Disinfectant Spray, 1/3 cup 50% Alcohol (all that was left at the store), 1/3 cup Hydrogen Peroxide, 10 drops Tea tree oil, 10 drops Orange oil, Disinfectant wipes, 1/2 cup Alcohol, 1 cup Vinegar and 1 cup distilled water, 1 tsp dish soap, 10 drops Bergamot Oil, 10 drops Tea tree oil, 10 drops Lemon Oil, 10 cut cloths, I used an old salad greens container.

Resources:

Healthline.com, Livesimply.com, Mom.com, Truemoneysaver.com, Oneessentialcommunity.com, Draxe.com, Cleanmama.com, DIYnetwork.com, Tipsbulletin.com, Wikihow.com, Livingonadime.com, Homemadelovely.com, Wholefully.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coping with Pandemic Anxiety

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You don’t have to have a mental disorder to be feeling anxiety over the current Pandemic of the COVD-19 virus. We are ALL affected.

Personally, I went through some rough ups and downs of anxiety, fear, and emotions before grounding and affirming my own capability.

I first read about the Coronavirus about a month ago and saw it was in China and thought to myself, Ok, I don’t have to worry, it isn’t here.

Then about a week and a half ago, a friend of mine had to cancel his flight because his layover was in Seattle and they were quarantining there and he didn’t want to get stuck. Quarantine, what a scary word!

Obviously, my prior lack of concern was immediately erased and a very heightened awareness began. My sister and her son came to visit last weekend from Pa, to celebrate my nephew’s 7th birthday! It was held at Chuck E Cheese, and I couldn’t help to think, this may not be the best place for germ prevention! Then last Wednesday, March 11, I had to go to physical therapy for my back, which is located in our local hospital. Security was stopping people at the entrance to ask if we were sick and/or if we have traveled out of the country recently. This naturally made me even more nervous, say nothing about being in a hospital and being around people who were potentially sick. I used the hand sanitizer they had on the wall before, during and after my visit. I had two more appointments last week, family therapy and my own therapy, and in the back of my mind, I decided that this was it. I am canceling next week’s appointments and began educating myself.

Last Friday, I sat at my computer with the intention to learn more. In a few hours, I was in tears. So many people sick, many dead. The fear took over. I decided a long time ago because of my anxiety to not tune into the news and media too much because they are designed to instill fear. However, one does have to know what is happening around them. I was scared but decided to keep going. I had to learn as much as possible. I read my local news and learned someone tested positive in the town next to me, then I read posts from C.D.C and W.H.O. I scoured over Facebook and Instagram and my emails.

Meanwhile, my classes were changed from in-person to digital. Gatherings were being canceled and then Trump announced the National Emergency. Later that day the announcement of all local schools were being closed. A Friday the 13th that will not be soon forgotten!

It was a weekend of rollercoaster emotions. From sadness to fear to panic and then to reality and action, and heartwarming as I watched the videos of Italy singing on their balconies during their quarantine and read about families getting closer as they were spending more time together.

I had to ground myself and prepare to reclaim my own power. I can not afford to be swept away in panic. I went out Friday for groceries and was shocked to see that people had bought out the toilet paper and many other supplies were wiped out as well. I had already gone to the food pantry at the beginning of the month since paying for classes takes from my grocery money,  I also buy tp, and other supplies for the month at the start of that month, thankfully!

It upsets me that some people go into extreme hoarding and don’t think of their fellow human beings; but, I guess panic makes people do crazy things. It has been interesting to see the reactions of people. Some go into a panic and selfish preservation and others are in denial and laugh. I have seen these reactions in times of panic in my life and recognize them.

It is crucial that we all find a happy medium between these extremes. To remain calm, be responsible, take it seriously, (though comic relief here and there can be healing), take action and don’t forget to reach out to those in need.

I am writing this post hoping to help others reach this calmness during the storm. I have organized the following guidelines;

  1. DONT PANIC, We already know to panic is to lose our shit, and therefore lose our power. It’s extremely important to keep calm. It’s time to practice all the tools you have to center; Deep breathing, Meditation, Grounding, Earthing,  spending time in Nature and Praying. Whatever you have to do to keep yourself from being swept away in the chaos.
  2. GET INFORMED, Education is power. Learn the facts about what is happening, so you can take appropriate action. Here are some links; CDC Key Facts, Myth Busters from WHO,  A Guide from The Verge. Here is a link to a Facebook post that I found helpful, it has a math equation to figure out how many will be affected in your area and how quickly, The Sobering Math. Remember, while you are researching to take deep breaths in between. I found while I was educating myself it was hard not to get caught up in the fear.
  3. PREPARE, After you have the facts, you will naturally want to prepare if you haven’t already. This is kind of tricky, I am still wondering what kind of time frame to prepare for, I have read anywhere between 2 weeks to 2 months. Use your own discretion. Here are some lists I read, How to Prepare from CDC, Get Your Home Ready CDC, Social Distancing, Grocery Rules from CNN  Here is what I have done so far; besides the rice, pasta, canned goods and peanut butter I got from the food pantry, I used my credit card to stock up a little more on these things, some paper goods, water, antibacterial soap, and cat food. I refilled prescriptions and still need to get Tylenol and Vitamin C, I bought lots of garlic and ginger, for the immune system, and I gathered pine needles for steams and tea as they are an antibacterial and contain Vitamin C. (I will be making separate posts on foods, plants, and DIY items that can help during this time).
  4. ACCEPTANCE, After I grounded, informed myself and prepared, I found myself in a state of acceptance. Ok, this is real and it is here. I have the ability to cope with this. I am practicing social distancing. I am making a list of projects and things to do during this time inside. I will make sure to get outside for walks and deep breaths, and I will stick to a routine so I don’t end up in a depression. This is a time to catch up on reading, cleaning, writing, painting, and spending time with family and/or housemates.
  5. REACH OUT, Even though we are socially isolating please make sure to reach out to people who may be in need without compromising your own health. If you happened to panic and bought more than you needed, put some items in a bag and leave it for an elderly neighbor. I saw my neighbor post she was out of toilet paper, so I spared a roll. Reach out through the internet to see if there’s anything you can do for others, or if you need something, use your voice. This post is my way of reaching out and hopefully being helpful.

I know this is a scary time, but it is also an opportunity, to slow down and reevaluate what our priorities are. This could be a reflection of our own inner selves. Have we been isolating ourselves and distancing ourselves from others because we are afraid or angry? This is a good time to contemplate what it all means for us personally and globally, and what can we do to change. I hope this post finds you well and I am here to do my part. I will be sharing my insights, recipes and herbal knowledge. If there is anything you would like to ask, please feel free. I have seen in the past how emergencies bring people together. It’s my hope that even during social isolation we will be sending love and peace to our neighbors, and to the world.  I leave you with this touching video of how Italy is handling their shut down:

PEACE AND LOVE TO ALL

 

 

 

Catching UP!

 

Happy New Year, Valentine’s and almost Spring of 2020!! It’s been a while since I’ve posted and it’s time to catch up!

My last post was in July, hard to believe that it’s been that long. I was coping with grief with losing my soul kitty to cancer. Cry, clean, create became my mantra to work through it. The loss of my furbaby triggered a bunch of stored grief for my mom. Having lost her to cancer also.

I am happy to say that even though I carried my grief like a wet blanket, sobbing and heavy, I continued to keep moving forward, another mantra I repeat in my mind, Deep breaths and baby steps!

I have been actively moving forward for years through my mental health recovery, with long breaks and pauses in between to process and release trauma and feelings. Those pauses reflect in my blog, unfortunately, I haven’t reached the point where I am organized enough with my thoughts and emotions to share them regularly here and while it’s happening; but it is the goal.

Last year I really didn’t post much but I feel like so much happened. The year began with that crazy lump sum of money that I found on unclaimedmoney.com. What a blessing! This money allowed me to buy us bedframes, our mattresses had been floor-bound since our whole bedbug adventure a few years ago. I also bought another car so both my daughter and I have one now. Then, I stocked up on groceries, paper goods, and bought a printer and supplies of herbs, essential oils, and a massage/reiki bed, in hopes of beginning a business at some point.

Speaking of business, I began working with Vocational Rehab. I am taking a Self Employment program and am lucky enough to work with Dr. Deborah Osgood as my success coach! I started the blog/site Be YOUthentic. Check it out if you are interested@ BeYOUthentic.blog. Though I have some catching up to do on that blog too! It is a shared blog with my daughter and soon will have some herbal products created by yours truly!

I also completed a mentorship with a coven after completing The Witch’s Path class at Misty Meadows where I did my herbal apprenticeship. I will write more about this in a separate post. I am so grateful to have had this spiritual and magical addition to my life! And speaking of herbal apprenticeship, I just started another one at Blackbird’s Daughter Botanicals!  I am so excited to be continuing my plant journey!

2019 was a year of extreme ups and downs for me, with reunions, losses,  endings, and beginnings. It was a year of letting go of people and behaviors that no longer serve my highest good, to make space for the new and emerging life waiting to be born in 2020!

I guess that’s enough catching up for now.

Thank you for being here and allowing me to share my journey!🥰

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Cry, Clean, Create

melting tearspic from pinterest

If you saw my Wordless Wednesday, then you know my furbaby, Max crossed the Rainbow Bridge. He lived 16 weeks after his cancer diagnosis despite the veterinarian gave him only 1-2 weeks. I was in awe how long he fought and grateful for every moment, but, the last week he began hiding under my bed and hardly had the strength to hold himself up, not to mention, he wasn’t eating again, and this time he wasn’t bouncing back. I had to make the almost impossible decision to assist him with a visit to the vet. They were extremely compassionate and supportive. He went peacefully with a final rest of his head on my arm. 

It is a big loss for me as he came into my life only a few months after my mom passed away, and was by my side for almost 14 years. It’s been three weeks and I have yet to get through the day without crying. 

My mom’s death anniversary just passed also, and my dad’s is coming up in a few weeks, adding to the weight of my grief, but for the first time, grief isn’t swallowing me whole. I can allow my feelings without falling to bed for days. This is a huge progress for me, I have never been a functioning depressed person before!

I created a little mantra to help me cope with my emotions during this difficult time.

Cry, Clean, Create.

Cry. When I have to cry, I stop everything and sit and let it flow, until it feels like I can move again. I stop distracting myself from the pain and allow it to be felt.

Clean. Then I will clean something.  Anything from the top of a dresser to mopping a floor or putting clothes away, whatever is in front of me to be done. I lose myself in the act of cleaning and let my system process. It helps me feel productive and proactive.

Create. Creating a nice space on the dresser I just cleaned off. Journaling, or painting, where ever my spirit needs to go. I started working on a scrapbook/journal of Max, a painting, and refurbishing some plant pots. I have been working on trying to open up to my creativity and am finding the value of catharsis through it. It really is a beautiful healing tool.

This mantra has helped me stay grounded and focused enough to not lose myself in the grief and depression. I am also taking some herbal extracts and essences and practicing lots of self-care. Most recently, that self-care includes the gym or a walk. Physical movement helps break up the heavy energy and gets the endorphins pumping.

Grief feels like an old familiar friend these days. With the losses I have endured, I have somehow become stronger each time. Learning to navigate through the pain instead of running away from it. The bellyaching grief is slowly subsiding and giving away to smiles, love, and remembrance.

I close my eyes and I can see all the people and pets I have ever loved. I get sad and may cry because I miss them in the physical sense; but, I know deep within my heart that the bond of love lives forever and that is where we are always connected.

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One of those Days

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Some days I am ecstatic with enlightenment and joy, 

I can flow easily and I feel blessed and loved.

Some days, I feel broken and useless, and unworthy.

I feel incapable and poor, and hopeless.

I feel I will never get up that mountain top and see the view.

I will always be at the foothill scrubbing the mess others left.

I am full of anxiety and grief and depression.

I use my tools like grounding and centering and acknowledging the many different aspects of myself. I validate them and hold space for them. I recognize my triggers and breathe.

Some days these tools work and some days I still cry through my housework, shake through simple tasks and my heart hurts as I panic about everything.

These days turn into a feat to survive without being swept away. 

These days turn into sleepless nights.

Some days I can flow, some days I can barely bear to breathe.

Today is one of those days.

Update: Celebrating Life

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It’s been a bit since I’ve posted, so I figured an update is a good place to begin again. The year has been a whirlwind for me so far. Major events and significant emotions spinning around me. The amazing thing is I remained fairly stable through it all.

If you read my Hello 2019 post then you know it was a mixed beginning to the new year. Shortly after that post, it was confirmed My cat has cancer. At the same time, I somehow manifested a money miracle. On the unclaimed money website, there sat $11,000. waiting for me! Since my Being poor post, I have worked on changing my attitude about money and I truly believe this little miracle was a reward for that work.

The money was its own little tornado. It was a blessing, yes; but, it was also stressful. The fact that I am on disability created its own set of rules; because, you are only allowed $2,000. for assets. After reporting it, I had only the rest of the month to spend it. I used it with the goal in mind to elevate the quality of life for myself and my daughter. It was mostly spent on another car, home improvements, appliances, and furniture.

I was also able to afford x-rays for my cat, to clarify the cancer diagnosis. The vet did not bother with the ultrasound because the x-ray confirmed there were already spread nodules in his chest. She believes cancer started on a cellular level in his GI system. Even the testing to find out what type of cancer would be too aggressive. She placed him on hospice and prescribed steroids to suppress cancer as long as possible. I was financially able to buy him herbal/natural supplements to aid in his treatment. The vet gave him 2-4 weeks to live, and he has lived 10wks. Though his recent decline in quality of life leads me to the inevitable decision to bring him to the vet and ease his pain.

I was grateful I had my furbaby to keep me company when my daughter left for Alaska for a three-week visit with her dad and family that lives there. I usually fight loneliness when she goes; but, this time dare I say, I felt relief. We’ve had a few upsets recently and agreed we need a family therapist to guide us through her becoming an adult. I don’t know when to push her and when to not. Her self harming in the past left me very anxious to not upset her. We need maneuvering and mediating.

While she was in Alaska, I had the opportunity for a few weeks to really be mindful of my own feelings and needs. It was healing, enlightening and enjoyable. The joy came to a halt when I received news of a dear friend from my past had died. I was devastated. Sad because she passed; but, also sad that we had fallen out of each other’s lives. I learned her son had died three years earlier and I wished I had been in her life. Maybe she would still be here? I recognized these thoughts as grief guilt and the overwhelming sadness of my good old friend grief. I knew better than to resist, I opened up and let the emotion take over.

I spent the first day with wine, weed, pizza, and chocolate and said screw my daily routine. The next day, I awoke exhausted and didn’t feel like doing anything. Part of me wanted to push, get up, do your routine!! The other was simply unable. I emailed my therapist and asked, what is a normal response, I don’t want to spend too much time teetering on the tight rope of depression; but, I needed to rest, and mourn, and process. She told me three days, then get back to my routine. On the third day, I dragged myself to start functioning. The funeral at the end of the week brought closure and though sad, I was feeling like I was at a normal and healthy space.

A few days after the funeral, my daughter came home, exhausted and with a bunch to process herself. The next day was my birthday. Shockingly, not a tinge of the typical birthday depression. My gratitude for life was heightened with the loss of my friend. I awoke, did my routine, went to the gym, (I learned to go by myself while my daughter was away), I bought myself big sunflowers, vegan cheesecake, chocolate, champagne, and dandelion greens to make pesto. I indulged and took pleasure in these simple things. I took a long bath and wrote in my journal. I sat in the bath and reflected on all the baths of my life since I was a small girl. I spent my day in appreciation, mindfulness, and gratitude to be here another year.

The same mindfulness I practiced on my birthday I am using now, to cherish every second with my cat. Looking at him and loving him for the last time in this dimension. His symptoms are lasting longer and he is not bouncing back like he has before. He has held on longer than expected and it dawned on me that he has held on out of his love for me. When my friend died, he spent every day by my side. He kept me company while Serenity was in Alaska. He celebrated my birthday with me. He has been there for me through countless tears. He has been an amazing therapy cat and I am so grateful for the time we have had. Now, I have to be there for him and make him as comfortable as possible. Having to come to the decision to let go of my cat has been tremendously painful and I am struggling with depression again. On the other side of that pain, the appreciation for every moment and every breath of life has etched its groove into my soul.

I celebrate my cat’s life, our life together, and the connection we will always have.

I celebrate every person that I have spent precious time with in this life. I recognize how lucky I am to be loved and to love.

The loved ones I have lost I think about every day. When I feel apathetic I shake it off and appreciate the fact that I am still here, I motivate for the people who aren’t here to have the luxury anymore.

I Celebrate Life ❤

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