Toddlers are weird. When they have the stomach bug, food poisoning, gag themselves, or otherwise need to vomit, they shun any bucket, bag, or trash can that you *try* to get them to puke into (sometimes even as though they’re afraid of it!). Instead, they projectile vomit all over your nice clean carpet (purposely avoiding the kitchen tile) OR all over your furniture (especially brand new, cloth pieces). Le sigh.
The other day, the Little Mister was feeling icky and projectile vomited all over the carpet (and, yes, it was the last clean spot of carpet in our living room). It was milk vomit, of course (which smells totally awesome–*cough* *gag*).
I immediately whisked him and my younger son out of the living room before either of them could satisfy their curiosity by playing in the vomit. I gave the Little Mister a bath and some clean clothes, checked his temperature (which was fine), rubbed some diluted Young Living DiGize essential oil over his tummy, and cuddled him for a little bit to see if he was okay. He said he felt much better now (which makes sense–if my tummy hurts then I throw up, I usually do feel a lot better afterwards as well). So I put both boys in the Little Mister’s room with some toys to play with while I went to deal with the vomit.
As you can imagine, being the mom to two rambunctious little boys (and a third wee one in the oven), this is not the first time I’ve ever had to deal with cleaning vomit off the carpet (or the furniture), and it surely won’t be the last.
Here’s how I clean up vomit without using any chemicals. This is important to me, especially in the living room where my boys play most of the day, because I don’t want them to inhale or ingest anything that can hurt them. Here are the steps:
- Put something on your top lip just below your nose. This step is optional, but very helpful if you have super strength smell like I do or if the puke’s odor is gonna make you puke. Some suggestions would be Peppermint essential oil (my fave for this situation; be careful not to get it *in* your nose) or vapor rub.
- Remove any excess vomit with a towel. Get all the lovely chunks and as much juiciness as you can (thrilling, I know).
- Sprinkle the remaining vomit generously with baking soda. It pays to have huge containers of baking soda on hand all the time! This will absorb the liquid-ness of it and help to deodorize it.
- After waiting 15 minutes to allow the baking soda to absorb the moisture, scrub the spot with a scrubbing brush to loosen anything else. To make sure nothing stays stuck.
- Vacuum up the baking soda mess. I usually get my hubby’s wet/dry vac from the garage for this step, but a regular vacuum cleaner should work just as well at this point (use the tube instead of the vacuum’s head).
- Spray generously with Post-vomit Cleaner (recipe below). Let the cleaner absorb into the carpet or furniture (at least a bit). Let it set for about 5 minutes.
- Pat the spot mostly dry with a clean cloth. This is to remove the dampness and prevent it from causing any problems as well.
I prefer to use the simple recipe below for Post-vomit Cleaner because it is a natural cleaner and because all the ingredients in it are edible, so I don’t have to worry about my kids being around it (not that I’d encourage anybody to chug it). It’s purpose is to deodorize and sanitize the surface. I prefer not to use any soap to clean my carpet or furniture because soap (even natural soap) has a tendency to leave a residue on the carpet, which can draw dirt to the spot later on.
After cleaning up vomit, I typically diffuse some Young Living Purification essential oil into the air to eliminate the vomit’s odor floating around the room (I have a super sensitive nose, so this is necessary to me!). And if I know the vomit is because of sickness, I’ll also add some Thieves essential oil to the diffuser (which is known for killing 99%+ of all germs when used).
Oh, and FYI, this process and the Post-vomit Cleaner also work for cleaning up juicy poops (yay for leaky diapers…and pets…).
- 2 c. water
- 1/4 c. vinegar
- 6 drops Young Living Lemon essential oil
- 6 drops Young Living Purification essential oil
- 8 drops Young Living Thieves essential oil
Mix all ingredients in a spray bottle.
IMPORTANT: Test this cleaner on a small, obscure patch of carpet before using it full-force.
Oh, and the Little Mister is doing just fine. I’m not sure what caused him to puke, if he had a tummy ache, had drank some sour milk (like, you know, some that was in a bottle that he had stashed *somewhere* several days ago), or simply gagged. In any case, he’s back to good health and just as energetic and silly as ever!