When Sheila Sabine of the
Glass-Sabine real estate team met with Robins Burns, the owner of
"Elbow-Grease Cleaning Service," she was amazed to learn more about
the business and Robin's involvement in it. Using non-toxic and eco-friendly
cleaning products, Robin basically transforms environments - and as recently as
June 13, 2003, Robin was certified by the Alameda County Green Business Program
and became the very first cleaning/maintenance business to go through their
program. She cleans homes and offices all over the East Bay Area using products
that are free of harsh chemicals - and the results speak for themselves.
Several years ago in Southern
California Robin first heard about non-toxic cleaning products. She had already
chosen a career in what she refers to as Home Environment Maintenance, but she
was skeptical about the use of natural cleaning products; she really wondered
how they could possibly get things clean. However, now that she uses
environmentally sensitive products almost exclusively, she is convinced that the
results far exceed those achieved by using the "old standards." The
other benefit for Robin is that she experiences the difference in her own
well-being. After years of using standard cleaning products - and inhaling the
fumes emitted by the harmful chemicals found in the mixtures - she made the
change to alternative "natural" cleaners. She found that widely used
poisons were neither "clean" nor necessary. And that change was
definitely a move in the right direction: for her clients' health, her own
health, and the health of the planet. And, of course, natural methods smell
Robin first became interested in the
environmental movement in the early 1970's when she and several of her high
school friends volunteered at the local Oakland recycling center. Their job was
to sort bottles and cans at the center where people dropped them off. The
students in turn introduced their parents to the concept of recycling; they
worked at a grass roots' level and were instrumental in promoting the benefits
of basic recycling.
Running a business using
environmentally friendly products is a natural step for Robin. She is a
multi-talented individual who finds delight in many of the simple pleasures of
life. She loves to grow many of her own edibles and flowers in a magical garden
in her own backyard located near Acme Bread in North Berkeley. She loves to
hike, bike, cook, sew, read, meditate, dance, and indulge in many of the
home-based activities that the rest of us have long forgotten - those hobbies
that have been lost in the shuffle of fast-paced lives and careers. As for
Robin's career in home environment maintenance, she chose it because she felt a
calling to work with not only the obvious dirt, dust and grime syndrome, but
also the invisible aspects of "stuck" energy that show up amidst the
clutter found in every household. When Robin completes a cleaning project with a
client, the rooms aren't just clean - the whole environment has been transformed
and uplifted. The sparkling, shiny surfaces and the fresh, sweet smells create
an atmosphere of basic goodness and well-being. The people who then enter and
use the transformed spaces can feel the flow of new and inspired energy leading,
ultimately, to greater balance and sanity in their daily lives. For example,
here are a few quotes from clients: "I love to come home after Robin's been
here, it feels so good!" "I have more energy to do what I want to
do!" "The best thing I did for myself in 2000 was to have Robin come
every other week!" "She helps us to feel more sane!"
When Sheila Sabine asked Robin Burns
what advice she would give our readers, here's what she said:
1. By all means, stop buying cleaning
products that are not good for you (or the planet) and start experimenting
with some of the eco-friendly alternatives. Robin will consult and help you
find in local stores what works for your specific needs.
2. Find small ways of creating order
in your home; think like a minimalist. When you have a respect for details,
the quality of your life will actually improve!
3. Try to see your home from a fresh
perspective and with new eyes - it will give you ideas for creative changes.
To learn more about Robin Burns'
services and the use of eco-friendly products, she can be reached at
510-527-8885, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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