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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

What is this infamous "Sleep?"

So my house has turned into a death trap as we are in full-on packing mode, therefore disarray is abundant, to say the least. On the + side, moving day is in 9 days! Now I just need to get a day off to pack...

In my spare time, (HA!) I'm really enjoying the YA novel loaned to me by one of my BFF's, Christal, called "The Goose Girl" by Shannon Hale. It's very well-written with many undertones, and a good homage to the
Grimm faerytale. Only about halfway through, but a good read, so far!

Prior to this, I zipped through another title by Jodi Picoult - always a favorite. This one was "Second Glance" and it was one of her better ones, I feel. Several solid plot lines, her trademark twist at the end, and an overall fine book!

In addition to packing, I'm also working on two book trailers right now. One is for an American author, Jesse Giles Christiansen. His book, Pelican Bay, is a mystery thriller, and was super fun to create for. Sounds intriguing and spooky! The second I am just beginning, and it is for Canadian paranormal suspense author, Pauline Holyoak. Her book, Ultimate Sacrifice, is the third in her Merryweather Lodge series, and it sounds fabulous! In fact, it sounds intriguing and spooky too... odd...

Anyhoo, I suppose I better back to packing - something my children find immensely exciting, oddly enough. Crazy must run in the family!


Monday, July 1, 2013

Homemade Laundry Detergent!

That's right! I thought I'd give the recipe I pinned on my Pinterest a try! It led me to the blog "Why Not Sew? Quilts." I ended up looking around at different recipes, but this one was the most concise, had pictures, and included a link to where her recipe was tested against a store-brand version. So I went for it.

In the end, I'm happy with the result, but there are a few notes I'd add. SO I'm posting Why Not Sew's recipe below, with my notes added in - in pink, naturally:-)

How to Make Homemade Laundry Detergent

In the spirit of Laura Ingalls, with wash day being Monday, here's a little recipe for homemade laundry detergent you can use tomorrow, Monday!

wash on Monday
iron on Tuesday
mend on Wednesday 
churn on Thursday
clean on Friday
bake on Saturday
rest on Sunday 

from Little House in the Big Woods

* I use these utensils for detergent making only. They all stay in the pot until I make a new batch.
Estimated cost is $6.00 for 576 loads (depending on soap used and amount used per load, ONE BOX of Borax and ONE BOX of Washing soda)
The savings is incredible. (This is not entirely accurate, as up here in Canada, prices vary and what-not, but I would estimate that I spent about $6 or $7 dollars on these 2 loads and I filled 3 bottles totaling 12.7 litres. We'll see how many loads it gives me.)

You will need:

1 bar of soap (any kind you want)(Whatever colour your bar is, that 
will be the colour of your detergent-if that matters to you. Also, it's scent will be
the most prominent in your batch. Lastly, she made a note that some people found their batch too thick and to cut down to 1/2 bar of soap. Mine does seem very thick as it's cooling, so I would recommend that.)1 cup of Borax,
1 cup of washing soda (This was difficult for me to find,so I found a recipe here that showed me how to easily make some.)
a big pot ( that holds more than 2 gallons)(I would go with
at least 2.5 gallons, or 5 litres.)a grater
a funnel
a long spoon
2 empty gallon jugs/containers

Grate your bar of soap into your pot.

Fill one gallon jug and pour water into pot with grated soap. Cook until the grated soap dissolves.(This does not take long.)

Add the Borax and washing soda.

Bring to a boil. It will coagulate. (Okay, so this should be brought to 
a SLOW boil. A fast boil will result in a wicked-fast reaction and an
overflow all over your stove. Yep. That happened.)

 Turn off the heat. Add 1 gallon of cold water. Stir well.

Pour 1 gallon of your detergent into each container.

A funnel helps tremendously.

Now you have 2 gallons of (OUTRAGEOUSLY HOT, BURNING) homemade laundry detergent. (I left mine on the counter with the lids off. It's been 5 hours, and the containers are still quite warm to touch.) I use 1/2 cup per load. With the prices of detergent being outrageous, I feel really happy every time I make a batch of this.

This won't make many, if any, suds. Suds don't equal clean. It took a while to get that into my head. This detergent cleans wonderfully!
The detergent should thicken / coagulate when it cools. Usually within 24 hours!
(Also, with clean-up at the end, this all took only about 45 minutes.)
Let me know if you make any or if you have any questions.

Happy washing!
SO in the end, I made 2 batches because I kind of effed up the first one, but I'm happy with it all. I have yet to use it as it seems like it will be cooling until fall with this weather, but hopefully I can try a load tomorrow. The one change I did make was to add some essential oils to the finished batch, as I chose Sunlight bar soap for the cleaning power, but the shit smells like Pledge wood polish! I don't really want my clothes smelling like that, so I added some lavender/mandarin essential oils and it smells much better. I'll be sure to post after I've washed with it too, so we'll see how it works!