Community Workers

I see and say hola to a lot of children and adults on my walk each morning. These two guys are the ones that keep the streets clean in San Clemente. They deserve our appreciation and gratitude for a job well done. Especially if you walk on the streets of Centro the morning after Fiesta or Carnaval and then see them after these guys work their magic!

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Clipping and Trimming and Cleaning Oh My!

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Monday morning Jose returned to trim back our unruly trees, cut a few down and do some general cleaning of our yard and the lot next door.  I had him start with the two trees I wanted removed. Now before you get started being upset with me for taking out some trees look at it from our perspective.  Our yard is about 30′ wide by 20′ deep – 600-700 square feet…there were 14 trees in that space. Several were quite pesky like the cherry tree, always dropping partially eaten fruit to the ground for ants and wasps to have a field day. Or the one sour mandarin tree which has the sourest fruit ever – not even sugar helps. I did keep the other mandarin in the corner that Joe wanted me to remove but just for shade and privacy. We finally put the fig tree in the ground, this one is for Yusuf. I really hated the idea of removing these trees but between the cleanup, the bugs, and the fact that you could not harvest enough fruit that weren’t already pecked up by the birds it was a waste of space having it in the yard.

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Now there is air flow and sunlight between all the trees, the limons are not hanging over the driveway and whacking you in the head when you try to walk around. We feel this will allow the growth to be closer to the ground and easier for us to pick. Jose also cut the guava (guayaba) topping it off, again allowing for the growth to be lower and easier for us to harvest. This is also another tree that the birds just adore, and if we want to have any fruit at all we need to pick it early or else.

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Then I had him go into the lot next door and clean up all the plastic bottles, bags and other junk hanging around there. He filled two huge garbage bags with what others had dumped over the wall from our yard.

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Well it looks great.

Almost “Natural” Bathroom Tile Cleaner

It is not easy to find cleaning items here like we were able to find in the states. Lime-a-Way which cleans the hard water build up off your shower tile is not something that I have found on our supermarket shelves. Not sure what it would do to the delicate balance in our septic either, so if I did find it I am not sure that I would buy it. But the tiles just look so dull, I needed to find something that would bring them back to the original state.

We have hard water, this combined with soap, shampoo, cream rinse and shower gels make for a really ugly build up on our white shower tiles. So I went on-line to find what I could make to get my shower tiles looking sparkly clean again. Here is the recipe I made and used this morning:

  • 1 liter of white vinegar
  • 3 oz of liquid dish detergent lemon scented
  • 8 fresh squeezed lemons (strain before adding to spray bottle) approx 6 oz of juice

Mix well and put it into a spray bottle. (I used an empty foam spray bottle from a commercial product shown in the photo below). Spray on to cover the tiles and allow to sit for 5 minutes to 15 minutes depending upon the build up. Spray again if it starts to dry before you are ready to remove. Use a sponge to wipe the tiles and then rinse with clean water. I did not need to scrub as the combination of these items did a great job.

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First the fresh scent of the lemons makes the room smell wonderful, second it cleaned all the soap scum and hard water deposits off the tiles and they are shiny, just like new. I don’t think something this natural will harm my septic.  But just in case I will be adding brown sugar and yeast to my septic system this afternoon.

Hope it works for you as well as it cleaned our tiles.