Yesterday, I ran my dishwasher 3 times. And, when I pushed "start" that third time, the thought that crossed my mind was the same one I've had nearly every time I've pushed "start" since we purchased the mobile home: I am REALLY going to miss my dishwasher!
But, rather than get disheartened thinking of all the time it would've taken me to wash three dishwasher-loads of dishes by hand, I decided to look for something positive -- like how happy I am to have had this good, working dishwasher. And, how happy I am that even though I run it CONSTANTLY, the dish detergent I use doesn't break the bank.
And, then I remembered . . . that I've actually revised my homemade dish detergent recipe and hadn't yet posted an update.
As I've mentioned before, I wish I could keep my dish detergent 100% natural, but my water just won't allow it. I end up with a nasty residue that just won't do. But, my new mix, that really does the trick is 66.6667% natural, and I can live with that. ;)
It's a pretty simple recipe: equal parts Cascade Complete, Arm and Hammer Washing Soda, and Borax -- plus a little sprinkle of Lemi-Shine in each load.
I mix together a cup of each of the three main ingredients and store the mix in its own container. To use, I add about 1/2 Tbs. of the mixture plus a little sprinkle of Lemi-Shine to the detergent compartment, and I'm ready to wash!
Why not simplify things and just add the Lemi-Shine to the mix? Well, I used to do that, but it clumped horribly and even once became a solid chunk in my jar. I tried using rice to keep it loose, but the rice got a little gunky in the dishwasher. So, now, I just take the little bit of extra time and add it separately.
This recipe comes out to just pennies per load and gets my dishes sparkly clean with each wash.
Oh, and, use vinegar in the rinse-aid compartment, of course! Vinegar -- its many uses just astound me!