Productive Day

Whew!  It’s good to have a productive day and today was definitely a good day.  Church was good and my oldest went to Sunday School class (which doesn’t generally happen).  That felt like a victory in and of itsself.  He did scare us with a rash between Sunday School and Church (which can be a sign of a potentially fatal side effect of his medication).  We immediately pumped two benadryl into him and watched to see that the rash would subside (turned out to be some bug bites after all–whew).

After a wonderful family meal with Mom and Dad (chicken and dumplings, yum!) we came home to get a few things done around here.  Laundry was washed and hung out to dry.  I have limited lines to hang laundry from, so I have to do a load or two at a time.  I can’t hang a weeks worth of laundry out at a time.  But, it’s worth it to smell the lovely air dry scent of laundry that has been dried with sunshine.

We put  beans in the crockpot to cook (wonderful refried beans tonight and enough for another meal).  Then I turned toAnother Hatchett Job blog mixing up a batch of homemade laundry soap.   The picture on the right shows the basic ingredients that I use in a batch.  I don’t remember exactly where I first saw this recipe, but it is out there on several websites.

Here is the basic procedure that I use.  For a single batch, grate, shred, chunk up with a knife (whatever, you just need small pieces) a regular sized bar of laundry soap (Fels-Naptha, 1-2-3 brand is a double bar, Octagon, homemade soap, glycerin soap, etc.  Ivory works, but I am allergic to it).  I used a bar of 1-2-3 brand and made a double batch.  I picked up this brand at the local Food Depot which has a pretty extensive selection of Mexican brands.  This was very reasonably priced for a double sized bar of laundry soap.  I cut soap in chunks (1-2-3 brand is pretty moist and easy to cut with a large knife) and put in the bowl of my food processor with the blade that fits in the bottom.  I added 2 cups each of borax and washing soda (NOT baking soda).  I then pulsed the mixture until the soap was in smallish pieces and then let it run for a minute or two to make it turn into a cohesive (more or less) powdery substance.

I store my laundry powder in 3 small recycled containers (because that is what I had on hand, use whatever you like).  One container contains the end of the previous batch and a double batch fills a small recycled coffee container and a small container that once held a generic peroxide-bleach laundry additive with a snap on lid.  I store an old tablespoon measure in the container that is currently being used.  I use 1 tablespoon per load unless the clothes are muddy, nasty, gross, etc. and then I use 2 tablespoons.  It seems to work very well.  If I am hanging clothes out on the line to dry, I add a Downy ball with a small amount of diluted generic fabric softener, especially for towels.

Some articles have suggested using a bit of white vinegar in the rinse instead.  I tried that last summer and it was not a good solution for me.  After working outside or getting heated up at all, our clothes began to smell sour.  Not cool at all.  So, I discontinued the use of vinegar (don’t understand why that happened) and the homemade laundry soap has worked well for us ever since.

Personally, I love keeping the ingredients on hand and being able to whip up a batch or two of laundry powder at a moments notice and not having to drive a minimum of 20 minutes into town to pick up detergent.  I think that the 5-10 minutes that I spend making the powder is still time well spent, especially when you factor in gasoline prices lately.

Of course, I do feel a bit accomplished for doing it myself and I do enjoy it.  That’s got to be worth something.  Besides, now that the temperatures are hovering in the mid 90s every day, it is nice to not run the dryer and heat up the house even more!

Till next time,

Your Favorite Jewelry Lady, Premier Designs Jewelry

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