Tea - I love a comforting mug of it at night before bed, the smell of it when Ben is brewing it with mint leaves into fresh iced tea, and the whole comfort of merely sipping tea. But I did NOT know that tea is also a great hardwood floor cleaner!
On my quest to clean with more natural, "whole" ingredients, I read on several sites (including professionals' sites) about cleaning wood floors with tea bags steeped in warm water. Some recommended using up to 20 tea bags... I wasn't sure that I wanted to use quite that many of our beloved tea bags, or waste them if it wasn't going to work. So, I stuck with 2.
The whole length of our apartment is old hardwood flooring, and I found that microfiber cloths and just one medium sized pot of water and tea cleaned the whole stretch from living room to kitchen through our long hallway. True to what they claimed, our floors do look cleaner and shinier. It's not a jaw-dropping difference, but it does look much better and more polished. We'll have to see if anyone else notices a difference - the true test!
My newly cleaned living room floor: (I don't have a before picture, so you'll have to trust me!)
Soon after cleaning my kitchen floor (which is tile, so I did not used tea! just warm water), I was making myself a snack, when I apparently was overexcited about grabbing the peanut butter (which does get me too excited - I could eat it day and night), and knocked off most of what was on the shelf onto my hard tile floor. Needless to say, my clean floor didn't stay clean for long...
I am a major klutz, and it is a big source of frustration for me. I have almost dropped and broken my way through a whole set of Pyrex bowls (Ben and I were just recounting last night - how did we only end up with 2 left?) and other miscellaneous dishes. However, today, instead of being frustrated, I decided that I was going to try to follow one of the commandments I set for myself after reading "The Happiness Project": Act the way you want to feel. Simple sounding, but helpful - if you want to be feeling happier and be more "go with the flow", then act that way until you start to feel it. A friend of my mom's calls it "fake it til you make it". I like that version a lot too. It can't hurt to at least try to fake myself into acting like it doesn't bother me to dirty a kitchen floor.
And you know what? It worked! I laughed at myself, cleaned it up right then (also a commandment: Do it now!), and decided to take a picture and celebrate the fact that it happened and did not bother me. Again, it probably sounds so simple and insignificant, but in the day-to-day, those little moments of choosing happiness add up to a big difference at the end of the day.
Now off to go shopping to replace the jars of sweet mustard that I used to help me the act the way I wanted to feel this morning... :)