Little Wife On the Prairie

When you are everything to everyone, well, you had better act like you have it all together.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

It's pink, good smelling and hard working...

Can you guess what it is?  I bet you can't!  I read many frugal, natural, homesteader blogs.  I have seen this made several times and always thought about trying it.  I went so far as to buy the ingredients a couple of weeks ago but I just put them on a shelf in the utility room. 

This week my kids are home for spring break and we have been in need of entertainment. So imagine their joy when I said, "Hey, lets make some laundry soap!" Maybe joy is not the right word. They were a bit confused but were happy to have a project.

We started with a bar of Zote soap.  We got ours from the laundry section at Walmart for less than a dollar.  It is a mild soap with a clean fragrance.

We followed a recipe from Homestead Revival that said we should grate the soap.  Zaddok is demonstrating here.

Jolie put some muscle into it.  It is a very soft soap so it's not hard to do.  The kids kind of enjoyed it!

We then mixed the grated soap with 1 and 1/2 cups Borax and 1 and 1/2 cups washing soda.  You have to make sure you get the washing soda not baking soda!  We found ours in the laundry section of our local grocery store.  Our Walmart did not carry it. 

We had to half the batch to put it through the food processor.  Don't worry.  We washed it thoroughly after we were done.  But don't kid yourself.  The dishwasher soap we use in our dishwasher is probably far more corrosive and toxic than this stuff.  We still would not want to eat it or to have it flavor our next batch of salsa.  So we wash.

I have come to really love essential oils.  Fragrance usually makes me sick.  I can't stand candles and air fresheners.  But these oils smell wonderful and don't make me feel like I am breathing chemicals.  I used this grapefruit to enhance half of this batch of soap.  Matt is weird about smells too so I did not want to do the entire batch in case he didn't like it.

I use my canning jars to store just about everything.  They are good for that.

Here they sit in the utility room.  I have done this weeks washing with our new soap and it seems to do great.  I use a tablespoon in wach load!  I might use a bit more if I had seriously dirty stuff but so far the TBS has done fine.  I peeked during the washing cycle and the water was nasty and brown.  That's a good sign.  I prefer the scented detergent.  It just adds a little something.  Bottom line, this was easy and cheap.  The store-bought natural detergent I was using was 15 dollars for about 90 loads.  This stuff is about 3.  I can handle that! (If you add essential oils that will raise the price a bit but you don't have to have them.  The Zote smells quite nice on it's own.)

A little update.  My seeds are now sweet little seedlings.  All of my tomatoes are sprouted.  The peppers are taking FOREVER.  I always start to panic.  But God is the grower of things so I will not worry.

Tomorrow, homemade deodorant!  Yes it's true!


Amy @ Homestead Revival said...

Glad you like the recipe. And I love the idea of adding the Grapefruit essential oil! I'll have to try that. Thanks for linking to Homestead Revival™!

jeana said...

We do this too! Love it! Although occasionally I get the itch to go back to the other stuff...then I always come back to this. I know. I can't seem to make up my mind!

Kristin said...

Good for you! I use Fels instead, but have been making my soap for years! Love it! Makes me feel sooo...industrious!

Carrie said...

Impressive! Maybe someday, but right now I'll stick with my Melaleuca. :-)
Side note -- the Melaleuca dishwasher liquid? Not caustic/toxic like the stuff you get at the store! Woohoo!
When are you making yogurt, dearie? I made some the other day that set up and it's super duper yummy! You can do it! :-)

Little Wife on the Prairie said...

You sweet blog-friends have been my inspiration! I love getting good advice. :) I just got done folding the last of my laundry and I noticed something. My hands don't smell like detergent or have that slick feeling. Before, I would dread folding the laundry because I felt like I was covered in chemicals after I was done. I could almost taste the stuff. Gross! But no more! I also used a homemade dryer sheet so I am sure that helped as well. It worked beautifuly too! They should teach a class on this stuff in school. People need to know this is not hard to do and it is so much better for you!