I've received a few inquiries lately as to how exactly to green-clean some specific things. Since I am such a newbie (I just squirt vinegar on everything) I consulted with my pile of green-clean books for some advice. I have also found that Martha Stewart has green cleaning recipes on her website (thanks to hapa_lee at the green guidess for the tip). Lots of good info, so here it goes:
H wants to know about cleaning a toilet.
Borax is a natural disinfectant. I buy it at my natural market. The Clean & Green guide suggests an easy thing to do is to pour some into the toilet at night. Stains should be gone in the morning! You can scrub with brush if needed. Another option is to pour 1C borax and 1/4C vinegar into the bowl. Let it rest a few hours and then scrub with toilet brush.
P wants to know how to clean her beautiful new dining table after the kids spill on it.
Most of my resources give solutions for polishing wood, but I don't think that is what you are looking for. I also have a new dining table, so I can relate to your hesitation and concern. I think for cleaning up the messy part (liquids or foods) I would do a damp sponge. I have one that I am using that cleans really well and doesn't leave much moisture behind. I wet it with water, wring it dry and then wipe away. It is made by Twist and is biodegradable and reusable.
If you do want to polish a little afterwards, you can try many variations on oil and vinegar (varying both the types and quantities). The Clean & Green book has many recipes on page 81.
You can try 1/8C food-grade linseed oil (from health food store, not a hardware store, since those use petroleum ingredients) 1/8C vinegar and 1/4C lemon juice.
Another simpler recipe is 1/4C olive oil, 1/4C vinegar and a drop of lemon oil.
Mix ingredients in a glass jar and apply with a cotton cloth.
The book also has a recipe which includes whiskey, but I'd be afraid you might drink it up, P!