Thomas Murphy - Pine Shores Real Estate



Posted by Thomas Murphy on 12/6/2015

There are many ecologically friendly cleaning products available in stores today, however, they can do a number on your wallet. There are great alternatives to these costly store-bought items that you can make in your own kitchen. Orange peels for instance, are an inexpensive and powerful base for an effective all-purpose cleaner. Here is a recipe for an orange peel cleaner: Things You Need:

  • 1 dozen oranges
  • Baking soda
  • 24-oz. or larger glass jar
  • 1 pint white vinegar
  • Strainer
  • Pitcher
  • Spray bottle
  • 1. Scrub a dozen oranges with a solution of 1 part baking soda to 3 parts water to remove pesticides and any trace chemicals. 2. Rinse the oranges thoroughly. 3. Peel the cleaned oranges. 3. Put the orange peels in a clean glass jar, and cover them with the white vinegar. 4. Cap the jar tightly. 5. Allow the mixture to rest in a cool dark place for at least one month. 6. Shake the vinegar concoction vigorously, and strain off the liquid into a pitcher or other wide-mouth, easy-to-pour container. 7. Dilute the mixture with 1/2 cup water; shake or stir again, and strain the cleaner into a spray bottle for convenient use. Note: Lemon and lime peels can also be used with the orange peels.  





    Posted by Thomas Murphy on 4/7/2013

    For most of us cleaning is no fun. There are some hidden secrets that can make cleaning just a little bit easier. Here are some little known cleaning tips: -Remove grease and dirt build up from kitchen cabinets. Say to clean cabinets, 1st heat slightly damp sponge or cloth in microwave for 20 - 30 seconds until it's hot. Put on a pair of rubber gloves, spray cabinets with an all-purpose cleaner containing orange oil, then wipe off cleaner with a hot sponge. -Soak old paintbrushes in hot vinegar for 30 minutes and good as new. -Clean that oily, sticky residue off of appliances with a little Cream of Tarter mixed with a few drops of water, add some scrubbing! -Get a clean microwave by filling a microwaveable bowl with 1-2 cups of water and add a dash of vinegar (about a tablespoon or two). Put the bowl in the microwave, shut the door, and turn it on for 5 minutes. -Chalk will remove grease stains from clothes. Simply rub the stain with chalk, then toss in the wash as normal.





    Posted by Thomas Murphy on 1/20/2013

    These days everyone is looking to go green? Knowing when, how and where to start can be the hard part. So, why not start in the kitchen? Here are some items from your kitchen that you can use on your way to a greener home. Baking Soda Baking soda can be an effective cleanser for your bathroom. Use one cup of baking soda mixed with a teaspoon of liquid soap, a bit of water, and a few drops of antibacterial essential oil (such as tea tree, eucalyptus, rosemary, or peppermint) make a great cleaner. Milk Milk can be used as an all natural stain remover. Soak the stained garment in a bowl of two parts milk and one part white vinegar. This works especially well for ink stains. Herbs Many herbs are natural cures for aliments like stress, digestion, immunity, and more. Use seeds from plants like lavender, mint, lemon balm, and thyme to make your own natural remedies. Compost Pail Make your own nutrient rich soil to grow plants in by composting. Keep an airtight container in your kitchen and use it to dispose of food scrap items such as vegetable and fruit waste, meal leftovers, coffee grounds, tea bags, stale bread, grains, and general refrigerator spoilage. Reusable Tote When you shop for all of these items make sure to use a reusable tote. You can find these for sale at grocery stores and other shopping centers. This will cut down on plastics.





    Posted by Thomas Murphy on 4/1/2012

    Did you know that indoor air pollution is actually worse than outdoor air pollution? Indoor pollution can in fact be 2 to 10 times worse depending on the materials in your home. Many of the materials in your home omit Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC's). According to the EPA, VOC's are in the air that you breathe and can have long term health effects, including liver, kidney and central nervous system damage and cancer. Here is a list of some of the indoor air pollutants that you may want to reduce or remove in order to have a healthier home. Cleaning Supplies The things that clean your home may be making you sick. In fact, bleach is one of the biggest offenders. In order to have a truly clean home, remove all of these chemicals and start replacing them with natural ones. Check the labels of everything. Many sheets that are made for your dryer have formaldehyde in them. Some of the most dangerous cleaning products are corrosive drain cleaners, oven cleaners, and acidic toilet bowl cleaners. Corrosive chemicals can cause severe burns on eyes, skin and, if ingested, on the throat and esophagus. Air Fresheners Air fresheners may smell sweet but their effect can be anything but. Some air fresheners can send chemicals into the air that contain VOCs. The American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology looked at plug-in fresheners and found more than 20 VOCs' and more than one-third were considered toxic or hazardous. VOCs can increase the risk of asthma in kids. At high enough levels, they can also irritate the eyes and lungs, trigger dizziness and headaches, and even lead to memory loss. Furniture Believe it or not the place where you sit or sleep could be harming your health. Furniture is such a big part of our life, we eat on it, sleep and sit on it. Furniture also can emit VOCs. Furniture is often made with flame retardants, finishes, adhesives and foam cushions that give off harmful chemicals. Paint You often hear about the dangers of lead paint. You should also be worried about the brand new fresh paint you just put on the walls. Paint, paint strippers, varnish removers and floor stains all emit VOC's into the air. These chemicals don't go away once the paint has dried or once it stops smelling. The harmful chemicals can last for as long as two years. New Flooring That new carpet smell is not good for you. As pretty as it may look new carpet, wood floors or even linoleum flooring give off VOCs. Purchase flooring produced from renewable materials such as linseed oil, rosins, wood flour and jute. Look for wood flooring that is FSC Certified (it came from a Forest Stewardship Council Certified Forest which helps protect old growth forests from being clear cut). For more information read about Sources of Indoor Air Pollution on the EPA site.