Advent has always been a time of preparation in our family as we await the birth of Christ. Growing up, our family did not decorate early for Christmas. Instead, we would use items from around the home or yard to keep the house alive, but in quiet preparation for the coming of Christ. I have continued this tradition in my own family. We hang real greenery, fresh wreaths, and dried citrus fruits on garland during the Advent season.
It only takes a few minutes to slice the citrus fruit before baking. It’s rather an easy task to create simple touches around the home. After slicing the oranges, you will have some extra pieces from the ends. Below is a recipe to make a cleaning solution.
Recipe for Dried Organes:
Slice oranges and place on parchment paper. Bake at 200 degrees for 3-4 hours. (I usually baked mine for 4 hours.) These can be made into a garland with twine or ribbon. Otherwise, add the dried oranges to greenery to add a pop of color.
After cutting the oranges, you will have remaining end peels. Instead of throwing those peels into the garbage, you can either compost them or made a cleaning solution. This can be made with any citrus fruit (grapefruits, lemons, limes, or oranges).
Recipe for Citrus Cleaner:
Slice citrus fruit and place in a mason jar. Cover the citrus peels with white vinegar and place a cover or tight plastic wrap on top. Let the vinegar and citrus sit in a cupboard for several weeks. After the citrus blends with the vinegar, the fruit can be drained. You may use the vinegar with baking soda to clean sinks, bathrooms, and even your floor.