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As long time readers may remember, our family uses a lot of non-toxic, all-natural cleaners, but the one regular household cleaning product we have used for years to mop the floors is original scent Pine Sol (in more diluted amounts that what is called for on the bottle, most often). Well, we don’t use it anymore . The makers of Pine Sol somewhat recently changed the scent drastically of “original” Pine Sol, and it now smells absolutely nothing like pine or the actual original. Not only is our family is very disappointed in the company that makes Pine Sol, but many others are, too, as evidenced by the customer posts and comments on their Facebook page, which can be visited by clicking here.
The smell of Pine Sol has been part of the smell of our home. It’s, as our neighbor’s son once put it, “The smell of clean!” It means more to our family than just being a product. It was the smell of the weekly pre-Sabbath exciting rush; that our children and their friends could smell outside the windows as they played and I cleaned – and that so many commented on liking, even loving – and this made our children so wholesomely proud of their home and momma who cleaned it, which is important; that we all associated with clean, disinfected floors; and it was one of the smells that they strongly associated with me – our family homemaker, a smell that would remind them of home and momma for the rest of their lives. We’re all a bit saddened that this Pine Sol era has ended.
I read something very interesting about smell in the psychology text I’m currently studying:
“Has a particular smell ever triggered a memory for you? In his novel Remembrance of Things Past, the French novelist Marcel Proust told the story of a character who claimed to have accessed all of his childhood memories by simply smelling a “petite Madeleine” (a small cupcake or cookie) dipped in a cup of tea. But is there any evidence to support this idea? Indeed, brain-imaging studies of human olfactory functioning have established key connections among smell, emotion, and memory (Hertz, 2004; Pause & Krauel, 2000; Zald & Pardo, 2000). Interestingly, the brain’s encoding system for smell-related memories appears to bypass the hippocampus, a structure involved in most other kinds of memories.”
The smells of our home are important. They are emotionally linked. They are tied to memories, and this tie is so amazing that science has yet to fully understand it. Unpleasant odors seem likely to cause unpleasant memories, whereas pleasant ones are linked to pleasant memories, and it’s logical that pleasant memories are related to pleasant emotions, and unpleasant ones to unpleasant ones. As homemakers who work to create thriving homes, this is something to seriously consider.
This Week’s Assignment…
Most importantly, only do this assignment if you are physically well enough to do so. If you do this assignment, you assume full responsibility for yourself, your family, and your belongings before, during, and afterwards; and acknowledge and accept that there are risks involved, including, but not limited to: hurting yourself while cleaning or ruining an item with a cleaner (it is important that you follow all manufactures’ instructions about using their products).
Ask yourself the following two questions, and answer honestly. Ask your family members the first question, and ask them to be honest, too. Don’t have your feelings hurt if they say that the house doesn’t always smell pleasant – it’s better to know now and correct it than it would be to hear your children and husband talk about it twenty-years from now.
1. How does your home smell?
2. Does it “smell up to its potential”, meaning, does it smell the very best it can?
Take steps to get your home smelling up to its potential this week. The following tips may be very helpful:
1. If you have a pet that just stinks, no matter how much you clean it and its items, consider getting rid of it. There is a product called “Nature’s Miracle” that I’ve read works very well for getting rid of pet smells. It can be found by clicking here. I have never used it and don’t have any pets except for two budgies.
2. If you smoke inside, start going outside or quit. Consult a cleaning specialist about how to rid your home, as much as possible, of the smell. Click here for an article that may help. If such drastic changes to get rid of smoking odors are impossible to afford at this time, do the best you can. If you know of a way to help remove smoke smells, I ask that you share it in the comments.
3. If you have any urine-stained mattresses, they are emitting odors in the home. Click here for an article about getting rid of the stains and smell.
4. Thoroughly clean your home. Here’s how:
Declutter, thoroughly clean and organize your home. Do this one room at a time. An excellent way to get started is to remember these two things:
- If it’s not useful or beautiful, throw it out! Have a garbage can and several garbage bags for the garbage, have a box or so for charity, and a box for collectibles, such as heirlooms, that can’t be thrown away but need to be stored. Go through everything, including drawers, closets, bookshelves, corners, cabinets, and whatever else is in the room.
- Next comes the thorough cleaning. Wipe off, dust, polish, wash, scrub; do whatever it takes to get the room thoroughly clean. Don’t forget walls, ceilings and baseboards.
You will most likely find after the decluttering that you have a lot more room to put things, therefore, the organization of your items comes next. Find a space to neatly place everything. Don’t forget: one room at a time is the way to go with this. Trying to declutter, thoroughly clean and organize more than one room at a time can leave you frustrated, take a lot longer, and may be less thoroughly done than going one room at a time. Also, going one room at a time, you can see your results more quickly, thus leading to more motivation to go on to the next room. This is initially time-consuming, good old-fashioned hard work, but the benefits are great. You have a beautiful home, you save a lot of time by maintaining a clean home rather than shuffling a mess and clutter around, and it’s so much easier to maintain a home that is organized and clutter-free. Declutter, thoroughly clean, and organize your home at least twice a year. A suggestion on when to do this would be once in the summer and once in the winter.
Don’t forget to thoroughly clean the refrigerator and freezer! After you do, consider placing some baking soda in each.
5. Don’t overwhelm your home with harsh or loud smells. Commercial laundry products and cleaners are usually very heavily scented. If you use a lot of these, consider switching most all of these products to all-natural, lightly scented products. This way the smells aren’t all mixed-up, overpowering, and chemical. You can then chose one main scent for your home – like our family did with Pine Sol. Smells of fresh cooking and baking are free to fill the air in a lightly scented home, too!
6. What is a smell that your family (and always remember, you are a part of your family, too!) really enjoys? Perhaps it could become your signature smell. Think of a smell that can become to your family what Pine Sol was to ours and add it to your home.
7. After you’ve thoroughly cleaned, consider doing some of the following to add nice smells to your home:
1. Create an orange peel fragrance. Click here to learn how.
2. Make a natural homemade carpet powder. Click here to learn how. A few drops of eucalyptus and or lavender essential oils make a nice fragrance.
3. Bake some whole foods cookies or fresh bread.
4. Make brown beans in the crock pot. This is easy: Thoroughly rinse the beans. Add them to the crock pot until it is about half-full. Fill the crock pot with water. Add salt. Turn the crock pot on and cook them for hours until they are done. When they are about an hour away from being done, you could add some fresh chopped onion, if you’d like.
8. If you have any helpful hints or information about getting a home smelling up to its potential, please share by commenting. Your help would be very much appreciated!
9. If you haven’t the physical ability or finances to get your home smelling up to its potential at this time, do what you can with what you’ve got and give yourself credit for doing so. If, at the end of the week, you find that you need more time and work to get your house smelling the best it can, keep going with the process. Progress is progress – it’s moving in the right direction and for that, you deserve credit!
10. At the end of the week, ask yourself and family members how your home smells. Improvement is wonderful!
~ ♥ ~
On the bright side, our family is nearly over the Pine Sol disappointment we’ve experienced. I am excited to create my own fragrance for our home using kosher essential oils, God willing. Things change, and we’re adaptable, but if Pine Sol ever recreates its famous original scent, it will still be a good trip down memory lane for all of us ♥.