Tuesday, March 23, 2010

When Life Gives You Lemons...

Lemons. The Magical Fruit.
Im feeling so inspired by the change of seasons. Its time to get organized and look & feel better. With all that being said, Let me explain how great the lemon is! For around $5.00, a bag of lemons can add so much to your life.

LEMON: the lean, mean, cleaning machine.

Why Clean With Lemons?The citrus smell of a lemon is refreshing and invigorating. For many people a lemon smell has come to symbolize cleanliness. Most major cleaners on the market today have a lemon or a citrus scented version for consumers to enjoy. Lemons are acidic and can provide some antibacterial and antiseptic properties for cleaning.

How to clean with Lemons:

Cleaning laminate countertops: First, take a whole lemon and cut it in half. Squeeze lemon juice onto the counter. Using the lemon as a scrubber, work the juice over the counter. Leave the juice stains on until they disappear. Then rinse the surface with water and dry it. The citric acid will quickly remove the stains. This should happen fairly quickly, but, tough stains may take longer. Lemon juice from a bottle can be used in place of a real lemon.
Cutting boards: The same procedure works on bread cutting boards. Rub the lemon onto the stains and let it sit. It will bleach the board, plus it disinfects at the same time.
Cleaning copper: To clean copper, first cut the whole lemon in half and sprinkle salt (any kind -- even sea salt) onto the lemon. Massage the lemon wedge onto the brass, squeezing the juice out, until the tarnish is buffed off. As it stops working, add more salt to the lemon. Rinse well with water and let it dry. It is important to keep copper bottom pans clean because they redistribute the heat according to how clean they are on the bottom.
Removing rust from clothes: Put lemon juice on the rust stain and then sprinkle cream of tartar onto the top of the juice. Pat it in with a finger and let it sit on the stain until the rust is gone. The citric acid will take the rust right away. Some stains are tougher than others, but 15-30 minutes should work just fine. Launder as usual.
Bleaching white clothes with lemon juice: Mix 1/2 cup lemon juice (or use sliced lemons) and one gallon of very hot water together. Soak the clothes that need bleaching. Do not use this trick on silk. But, this is perfect for white socks and underwear -- even white polyester shirts. This can sit out from an hour to overnight, depending on how badly the clothing needs bleaching. Once they soak, remove the clothing from the mix and pour the mix into the washing machine and wash as usual. It's impossible to over-bleach using lemon juice.
Getting stains out of Tupperware: Squeeze some lemon juice in the container and then add some baking soda. Use the lemon as a cleaning tool and work it in. If the stains are bad, let it sit overnight before scrubbing the stains.

Lemon-Aid to the Rescue!

The lemon has healing powers, try some of these home remedies.
Want to lighten or get rid of a scar?
- 1 Lemon
- Surgical Gauze

1. Squeeze the juice from the lemon into a bowl.
2. Soak the gauze in the lemon juice.
3. Place the gauze on your scar.
4. Relax for at least 30 minutes.
5. Repeat as often as you'd like, but don't overdo it if you have sensitive skin.

Avoid major sun exposure, while trying this treatment.

Dull Hair Color?
If your hair is starting to look dull, it could very well be from the product buildup that isn't getting washed away by your shampoo. Using this rinse, before you shampoo your hair, will remove product buildup and clarify your hair.
- 1 Lemon
- 1/4 cup Vodka
- 1 cup Water

1. Pour all of the ingredients into a plastic container or a jar.
2. Put the lid onto the container or jar and shake it up to mix well.
3. Pour the mixture to distribute it throughout your hair.
4. Shampoo and condition as usual.

Have Oily Skin? Citrus Facial

1 teaspoon lemon juice (You may substitute grapefruit, orange or another citrus juice, but don't mix them.)
2 teaspoons honey
6 ounces plain yogurt
1 drop ylang-ylang essential oil (optional)
1/4 cup oatmeal or crushed almonds (optional)

1. Blend ingredients.
2. Apply to face.
3. Allow to dry.
4. Rinse with warm water.
Need to Exfoliate? Lemon-Brown Sugar Body Scrub1/4 cup coarse brown sugar (to gently exfoliate without drying)

1 cup grapeseed oil (to moisturize)
1/4 cup grated lemon peel (to invigorate your senses)
1. Mix together all ingredients.
2. Gently rub on your body in a circular motion. Concentrate on rough areas like elbows, knees and heels.
3. Rinse with water.

"Dr. Oz had a segment on home remedies, and one of the remedies a lady swore by was making a recipe of white rum, lemon juice and water to reduce fevers and to get rid of a cold or flu. She said that you dip a cloth into the mixture of white rum, lemon juice and water and pat it all over your body (arms, legs, chest, back, forehead) and then lay the cloth across your face and breathe it in.

Dr. Oz says that he is a big fan of body rubs for fever, cold or flu… but not ones like this which contain alcohol, because the alcohol (rum in this case) makes your skin cool down too fast, so your inside temperature actually goes up. Instead, Dr. Oz suggests making a body rub with water that is 90-94 degrees."

Last, One of my absolute favorite things to do with lemons are pull out a vase or shallow bowl that you already own and fill it up! For $5, you have a ready made centerpiece! It looks great, smells clean, and is super Easy!

Also, try making your own Lemon Infused Vodka. This delicious recipe is from Martha Stewart: 

  1. Using a vegetable peeler, remove peel from lemons in large strips, making sure not to remove any of the white pith. Reserve lemons for another use.
  2. Place lemon peel in a large jar with a lid; add vodka. Cover and let stand at room temperature at least 3 days and up to 1 month. Strain before using.
However, if all this fails turn to the old sayin', when life gives you lemons...Grab the Tequila!

have a blessed day!

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