Oil Pulling: 2 Week Update

I have been oil pulling every morning for 2 weeks now (click to see my first post on oil pulling.) I’m kind of surprised I’ve been able to stick with it even this long. I am hoping to form a habit by oil pulling every morning for 21 days. I’m interested to see how it goes when my regular job starts up again in mid-August and I don’t have as much time in the mornings.

Results: 

I have noticed that the sore spots on my gums are gone. In fact, they were gone after just several days. I have also noticed that the skin on my lips requires less moisturizing – as long as I can remember, I’ve had very dry lips. I have only had one headache since starting oil pulling, but I don’t know if that’s related, because I only have headaches once a week or so. 

I haven’t noticed whiter teeth yet, but this could be for a few reasons. 

  • My teeth were pretty white already. 
  • The effect is gradual.
  • It’s only been 2 weeks. 

I haven’t been paying that much attention to the color of my teeth because it was not my number one concern regarding oil pulling. 

Here’s a picture of my teeth right now, for reference sake. It’s pretty weird looking at my mouth like that, trying to show as many teeth as possible!

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As far as I knew, I didn’t have any cavities, so I’m not testing that out. 

Since the third day, I’ve been using a regular table spoon to take the oil. The third day I took 2 teaspoons of oil and plopped it on a regular spoon, and have been getting about that amount since. It’s perfect. My cheeks still get sore from swishing – wonder if I’m being too vigorous? – but that goes away quickly once I’m finished.

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About how much oil I use daily. Not an exact science.

One thing I don’t like about oil pulling is when I have to yawn or burp with the oil in my mouth! Thankfully, I haven’t had to sneeze yet! I’m concerned about when I get a cold and am unable to breathe through my nose. I guess I’ll have to skip on those days. 

I’ve done a lot of things during my quiet mornings oil pulling – showered, washed dishes, perused the internet, read a book, and once I even walked on the treadmill while oil pulling. My point is, you don’t have to sit down and focus on the oil in your mouth. You go about your business.

Using this small amount of oil daily means I’m not going through it too quickly. I’m glad, because it was kind of expensive! Here’s how much is left after 2 weeks:

DSCN1367Do you oil pull? How has it affected your life?

 

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Borax as a Carpet Stain Remover

I tend to keep Borax around. I use it as a detergent booster and to clean the toilets. I decided it was time to try Borax as a carpet stain remover! We had 4 stains in our big family room. We moved into this house only 5 months ago. The most irritating part about the stains is that my husband, me, and our dog did not cause any of the stains. Crazy, right? They all appeared after having friends and family over various times. (Now when we host events, no matter how few people, NO ONE is allowed to have food or drink over carpet.) But that means that by the time we learned about the stains, they were pretty set in. One of the stains looked like our dog peed on the carpet and we never cleaned it up. I’m sure you can guess how I, writer for an organization and cleaning blog, felt about being asked that question. It was embarrassing, and it was time to do something. We don’t have a carpet cleaner. This was the first time of attempting to clean the stains, so you see the progression of set in and never dealt with to treated once and treated twice. Stain 1 was dark to start, but small. My toes are in a lot of the pictures to show you relative size. 02 As you can see, the color lightened a lot and it lifted a good amount. Stain 2 was the one that looked like dog urine. It was a lighter color than all the other stains.   01 It didn’t fade much. I really wonder what this stain was from so I can treat it appropriately. Third stain was a right angle and we have no idea what it was from. 03 By the second treatment, the stain was pretty much gone! Stain 4 part 1.  04 Pretty much gone!! Stain 4 part 2 had a lot of little dark spots and a big lighter circle. 05 It faded a lot by the first treatment, but I went ahead and treated again and the color from the carpet got removed for some reason. It’s not obvious though and I’ll take it! DSCN1264The carpet cleaner was super easy to make. I got my cleaning recipe and directions from this page. 1/2 cup Borax added to 2 cups of warm water. I mixed it up pretty good with a fork and for the second treatment, I dug into the bowl and really made sure I got some Borax on my rag instead of just water.

  • Take the Borax/water mixture and blot onto stain using a white towel. Do not soak the carpet!
  • Let sit for half an hour. (Make sure to keep pets or kids out of the area!)
  • Using a new white towel and plain cold water, sponge area to remove cleaning solution. Again, do not soak the carpet! Blot dry.
  • Let dry (I let it sit overnight – our dog is shut in the room with us at night). When completely dry, vacuum.

I repeated the steps twice over two days. I am pleased with the results! How do you clean up food/drink stains on your carpet?

Dawn and Vinegar Shower Cleaner

DIY Shower Cleaner

I decided to try the blue Dawn dish soap and vinegar mixture for cleaning showers that was circulating Pinterest for a while. I tried at our old house, but I wasn’t sure about it. I tried using just a little Dawn, and later I tried squeezing the Dawn into the shower first and then spraying vinegar over it and letting it sit. Don’t do that! It doesn’t work.

This time, I put some vinegar in a spray bottle, and an EQUAL amount of Dawn. I shook it up really good and sprayed – rather, saturated – the floor and walls of the shower. I let it sit for an hour. 

I did take pictures before and after, but the truth is, my shower didn’t really look all that dirty to begin with. I was pleased with how shiny the floor looked post-cleaning, though.

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(There are some flaws in my shower, chips and stuff like that, and you might see those in the picture – they are not dirt.)

Vinegar and dish soap are two things I tend to always have on hand. I happen to use blue Dawn as my dishwashing liquid of choice anyway, too. I’m pleased with this cleaning recipe. The shower is one of my least favorite things to clean at home because of all the bending. This recipe makes the bending time spent while cleaning the shower much less!

The only thing I have concerns about is how long the mixture will last. I have some left over from today’s cleaning but I don’t plan on cleaning the shower again for a week or so. I’ll let you know!

NOTE: Right at an hour, my husband came home from work (landscaping) and needed a shower right then. It was really quick and easy (no real scrubbing power required) to wipe down the shower and walls and then rinse. Rinsing took the most time!

What’s your favorite Pinterest cleaning recipe?

Uses for the Magic Eraser (and product review)

Uses for the Magic Eraser (and product review)

 

 

 

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Before today, I had never used a Magic Eraser. I bought a 2-pack not too long ago and still hadn’t used them. I wasn’t sure how – was there a trick to it? What if it didn’t work? Tonight, I decided to give one a whirl…

I read a bunch of blog articles and found lots of uses for the Magic Eraser. Here are the ones I tried tonight that I was super pleased with.

Dry erase board: Lots of smears on the one on my fridge. Came out much shinier and nicer, completely clean! (Of all the experiments, I was most pleased with this.)dryerase

Keyboard. Grime between the keys and on them. Gross. Came out really well. I might go over it again, in fact.  

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The refrigerator door. Not too bad, so it’s hard to tell, but near the handle there was some food grime. fridge

 

Stovetop. This mess just happened tonight. I usually use a rag and baking soda with water like in this post, but I thought I’d give the Magic Eraser a try… I had to wipe remaining smeared grease up with a rag after, though. stovetop

Toaster. The outside was really dusty, including the metal in the center, the little crevasses on the sides, and around the knob.toaster

Range head. It was SUPER dusty, had never been wiped off since we moved in. I’m not used to it since I’ve not had a range head in my adult life. Hard to tell, but it was perfect and shiny afterwards.rangehead

Wall. From moving furniture though this part of the hallway, there were some scuffs. In the first picture it looks like there’s a wet spot… there is: I wiped some down before snapping the first picture.

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Bottom of wall, more scuffing. I think I rubbed to much here – although the scuffing lifted, I think I lifted some of the white paint, too! (Where you see blue in the bottom picture.) Not good!wall3

I’m pleased with the Magic Eraser, but I won’t be so rough on the walls next time. Also, I would like to point out that it started falling apart pretty quickly (possibly related to how hard I scrubbed?) 

This is a new one compared to the one I used tonight. And I had the “extra power” type, too!DSCN1302

I would not use it on grease again, even though it worked fine, because it got SO dirty and would not rinse out completely. I am fine with a rag and baking soda for those situations!

Do you use a Magic Eraser? Where else should I try it? 

*This post was not sponsored or endorsed by Mr. Clean or anyone else. The opinions shared are the author’s alone.*

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DIY Stationary Kits for Kids

I love writing notes, letters, and cards to my nieces. I got the idea from when I was a kid and would get cards from my faraway aunts for every single holiday. Well, thankfully, most of my young family members live in my town and I see them for many holidays and their birthdays. But what about cards just because? I have done that too. 

I have two nieces (sisters, ages almost-10 and almost-8) who have expressed great appreciation for my cards. Especially the 9 year old, but for this gift I decided to include both girls. 

Stationary Kits! 

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I started with two gorgeous folders I received from a teacher friend getting rid of them. The sparkly one is the 9-year-old’s, and the flower one is for the 7-year-old. 

Inside I included tons of paper. I have a ton, and I needed to spread the wealth, you know?

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10 sheets of pink, 10 sheets of blue, and 10 sheets of fish stationary. The pink and blue are from the reams of each we bought to print our wedding programs on. We have so much left. The fish stationary was a Christmas gift to me from when I was still a minor living with my mom. I have used a bunch… still have a bunch left. 

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5 sheets of each decorative paper. 

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Two pieces of pig stationary. I didn’t have much of this. It’s from my childhood.

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A sample envelope (on a big notecard). On one side, there’s a generic form. On the back, there’s an example with their REAL name and address in the top left corner, and my real address in the mail-to section. I thought it might be easier that way, too. Of course I drew where the stamp should go. 

Their very own address book! Really just some papers stapled together more than a book. I included everyone’s addresses that I had that would be of interest to them. Including: their grandmas on both sides, their grandpa and nana on our side, all of their aunts and uncles on our side (mine is first, hehe), their dad, their half-sisters, and their great-grandma on our side. Their own address is at the top of each girl’s address book. I know they have more family, so I included a heart-shaped post-it note reading “Please add your own! I don’t have your whole family’s addresses!” and left lots of paper for however long they choose to keep this stuff. 

The only thing missing is envelopes and stamps. I am thinking of buying a book of stamps and tearing it in half so each girl gets her own, and I’m not going broke for something that may never get used. 

I originally included a couple of cards I’d love to get rid of, but I realized that the envelope is square, and that requires extra postage. Rather than trying to explain that to the girls AND making their mom buy more stamps, I removed the cards. 

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Here’s the inside of one kit. 

I didn’t write anything on the folders in case they want to use them for school or something. I am positive they will be able to keep straight whose is whose since the folders are different, and well, just because I know them. 😉

I made these because they like getting cards from me, so I thought they might want to send some mail themselves. I hope to receive some of that mail! It would be a blast to get one of these pieces of stationary back with their name on the envelope. I’m also trying to encourage writing habits. The more you read and write, the better reader and writer you become. That’s important to me.

Let me know what you think in a comment below!

Oil Pulling (Day 2): Too Much Oil!

I’m not planning to post about oil pulling daily, but I did have another thing to say today. 

Since my experience with one teaspoon went so smoothly yesterday, I tried a tablespoon of oil today. No problems with the gag reflex, but OH MAN was that a lot of oil in my mouth. And as time went on and my produced saliva was added to the oil… I had my lips closed but the oil was leaking out. Gross! Plus, my jaw ached after 20 minutes.

I’ll do a little less tomorrow. Maybe 2 TSP? That’s 2/3 of a TB, right? I’ll give it a go… 

Any experience with small mouths or big gag reflexes and having to reduce the amount of oil?

Oil Pulling (Day 1)

I just finished oil pulling for the first time and I’m going to record this experience.

I only used a teaspoon of coconut oil (unrefined, extra virgin, organic; set me back about $16 for a big 29 oz jar which will take me a long time to use.) Tomorrow I will try a tablespoon of oil since I handled the teaspoon MUCH better than I thought. 

What I mean by that: 

I was very concerned about all the stories I read about gag reflex. I have a very active gag reflex. I gag every day, twice a day, brushing my tongue with my toothbrush. I don’t even go that far back. It’s terrible. (But I want a clean tongue and fresh breath so I brush away anyway!) 

The oil was still in a pretty solid state, so I let it melt in my mouth first. Then I started swishing. I had a timer set on my phone for 5 minutes. But I had not gagged or had any problems in the 5, so I set for 5 more. And then 10 more. I was able to go the full 20 minutes that is recommended. 

My mouth does feel clean, but I’m probably going to brush my teeth this morning after breakfast anyway. Some people say oil pulling reduces the need to brush, we’ll see how I feel. 

The only thing is that I feel like I need to spit a bunch now because I still taste coconut-ty in my mouth and I am worried about swallowing toxins. 

I finally decided to spend the money on coconut oil because I have had some sore spots on my gums. I have no idea what’s going on there, but before I run to the dentist, I’m trying this for a while. When I update again on how oil pulling is going, I’ll talk about how my sore spots are. I doubt I have any cavities that need healing – I’ve had just 1 in my lifetime. I’m excited to see if I stop having headaches, too. They aren’t daily, but probably an average of weekly or more often, and they are BAD when I do get them. I heard oil pulling might help. Here goes!

HOW TO OIL PULL: 
Drink a cup or 2 of water first thing in the morning to activate your saliva. Then, take 1 Tablespoon of unrefined, organic oil + swish around in your mouth for 20 minutes. Spit into trash can (not sink, it WILL clog your pipes) when you are done. Now filled with spit and toxins, the spit will look milky white. THE END! That’s it.

Do you oil pull? What’s your experience been?