The Why: Using reusable cloths and towels saves money and time (the time spent running to the store for paper towels!) and reduces waste. Plus, it saves space in my linen closet because I don't have to find a place to store the big bulky extra rolls of paper towel. Sounds good to me!
The How: We actually stopped using paper towels to clean up most of our messes ages ago. We keep a stack of absorbent bar-mop towels in a kitchen drawer with our dish cloths and dish towels and my kids know to reach for them when they spill something or make a mess. I have to buy a new package about once a year because they endure a lot of wear and tear, but the 7 bucks I spend each year is far less than I would spend if we were reaching for paper towel every time one of the kids spills their milk.
I did, however, still buy paper towel for cleaning glass. I tried using newspaper for the job but found that to be frustrating and unsuccessful. So now I've purchased a pack of 2 microfiber cloths. The pack cost me 3 dollars and now I don't need to buy paper towels all year. One small purchase to save a dozen more.
By the way, I use a half and half solution of vinegar and water as my window cleaner. I've tried plain water and plain vinegar, but the half and half combination works better than either of those things on it's own.
But what about....umm...you know.....icky messes? Like, what if a child vomits on the floor? Well, if one of the children vomits on the floor I guess I will just have to whisk away the worst of the (I really hope you're not eating right now) chunks with a piece of newspaper and use an old grungy rag to clean up the rest of the mess. I can handle that...I think.
The Verdict: Reusable towels don't create any extra work for me because they just get thrown in with the daily laundry, and they save us money, are better for the environment, and take up less space. Fingers crossed that we avoid the stomach flu!
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