Monday, February 8, 2010

Homemade Laundry Detergent

Okay guys.  Here's the laundry detergent recipe I promised I would share. 

Here's what you need:


I found each of these at our local Kroger.  I had to search hard for the Super Washing Soda, but with the help of a nice clerk, we found it.
From what I have read, you can use other soaps, but the Fels-Naptha is what most people recommend.  It has a nice scent.

Now onto the steps:

First, grate 1/3 of the bar of soap.
Put soap in saucepan.
Pour 6 cups of water into saucepan.
Heat until soap melts.
Add washing soda and borax to saucepan.
Stir until dissolved.  Remove from heat.
Pour 4 cups of water into a large bucket.
A note about this bucket:  I did not own a large bucket, so I went to Lowe's to purchase one.  While waiting in line to pay for my new bucket, a kind man told me I could get a free one at Sam's bakery.  I thanked him, returned the Lowe's bucket to its shelf and proceeded to drive to our local Sam's club.  I was still a little skeptical, but hey, if I can possibly get something for free, I'm going to try.  Well, it was easy-peasy.  The nice bakery lady told me she had just cleaned up a few and kindly handed over this lovely 5 gallon bucket that still smelled of butter cream icing.  So, if you're a member of Sam's club, hop on over and get you a free 5 gallon bucket.

Okay, back to the directions...
After you pour in the 4 cups of water, add the soap mixture and stir.
Add 1 gallon + 6 cups of water and stir.
Let soap sit for 24 hours and it will gel.
Use 1/2 cup per load.

Note:  I doubled the recipe which is why it filled up my 5 gallon bucket.  If you go by the recipe exactly, it will only fill up half of the bucket.

You can also add essential oils for a nice scent, but I like the scent of the bar soap just fine and still use a scented dryer sheet.

Here's a breakdown of the ingredients and directions without the pictures:

1/3 bar soap
1/2 cup Borax
1/2 cup Washing Soda (not baking soda)

Grate soap and put in saucepan.
Add 6 cups water.  Heat until soap melts.
Add washing soda and borax.
Stir until dissolved.  Remove from heat.
Pour 4 cups water into bucket.
Add soap mixture and stir.
Add 1 gallon + 6 cups of water and stir.
Let soap sit for 24 hours and it will gel.
Use 1/2 cup per load.

Feel free to double recipe to make 5 gallon batch.

I would love to get your feedback.  Do you make your own laundry detergent?  What else do you make from scratch?  Are you interested in making your own laundry detergent now after reading this or are you thinking "Are you kidding me?"?  I wanna hear from you.

Computer Crash

Well it's been ages since I've posted.  While loading some camera software a week or so ago, my laptop crashed.  I mean, major nose-dive.  Thanks to my smart husband, we had a backup of some things, but not all.  He had to completely re-format my hard drive and re-install all my programs.   There are still a few quirks to work out but I finally feel like I have my computer back.
So hopefully I will be blogging more frequently.  I know you're thinking "Yeah right, I'll believe it when I see it".  

Well stayed tuned.  My laundry detergent recipe is coming up next!  Make it a great Monday!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


I haven't blogged in over a week because I have been trying to get to bed earlier - so I can get up earlier.  I normally write late in the evening so I've had to change up my routine a little.
This whole getting up early in the morning thing is HARD!  Whose idea was it anyway?? Yeah, I know, mine.  I will say the days I was able to actually get up before everyone were GREAT! 

Now I know you're wondering how many days I got up early - and by early I mean 5:30.  I will always be honest with you so out of the last 6 days...3 of them up early.  I wish I could write 6 out of 6, but like I said in my original post, I know what I can and can't do.  I hope the longer I do it, the easier it will get.

Funny little thing:

The first day I got up early, I had my quiet time and was able to get completely ready before the boys got up.  My 5 yr old said "Mom, you're all ready to go.  Did we sleep late?"  ha!  He knows me well enough to know that was NOT normal.

On another note, I made my first batch of homemade laundry detergent today.  I will post more about it later.  I took pictures of my process so now I need to figure out how to get them on here.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

This book grabbed my attention today...

I ran across information regarding this book while reading another blog today and am really looking forward to getting it in my hands.

Steady Days:  A Journey Toward Intentional, Professional Motherhood - from Simple Mom blog

So much of it resonates with me as a parent and the changes I am trying to make. I am anxious to read from her perspective.

Check it out and let me know what you think.  Does it peak your interest?

Monday, January 11, 2010


Okay, so I realize it’s the second week of January and I’m just now talking about resolutions. But hey, I didn’t start my blog until after the New Year, and who says you have to implement change on January 1st? I also don’t normally write down resolutions and try to go by them. So, why am I even discussing resolutions?

Well, I do like the idea of a new year, a fresh start, an opportunity to begin again. Also since I am trying to make a definite change in some areas of my life, what better time to really think about those changes.

The ladies at Blissfully Domestic have outlined some great challenges and I have to say I would love to check off each one. Who doesn’t need to improve in the areas of organization, fitness, and faith? I do think my main area of improvement needs to be in my time with God and His Word. I don’t currently have a time mapped out in my day to sit down and complete my Bible study. I try to make it a priority, but it sometimes gets pushed to the side. While I am not a morning person – at all – I am going to try and get up earlier (did I just write that!) and spend that time with my Lord. I have no doubt making this change will implement positive change throughout my day.

Is it going to be easy? NOT AT ALL. When I say I’m not a morning person, I’m not sure you really understand. I always thought that children would make me a morning person. They didn’t.

In our small group we are currently studying Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life by Donald Whitney. It has been eye-opening and I have been convicted about my Bible intake. Hence, my official New Year’s resolution is to wake up most mornings (listen, I know what I can and can’t do) before the rest of my family and dive into His Word. Have I mentioned that all of the other members of my family are early risers and that I am not?

Okay, there you have it. While this doesn’t seem like a SIMPLE change (isn’t that word in the title of my blog), it is a needed one.

Do you feel led to make this change as well? I would love to hear what some of your changes are going to be this year.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Snow Days

We had the pleasure of experiencing our first official “snow days” yesterday and today. While it would have been my first inclination to continue my laundry, cleaning and paperwork, I decided to spend the days really engaging the boys. I have to admit I don’t always do that. Since they are so close in age, they play well together - when they aren’t fighting, ha! – allowing me to let them play independently.

We, of course, played outside in the snow, made forts with furniture and blankets, played army men, board games, and my personal favorite…acted out action scenes from a Spiderman cartoon. They amazed me how creative they have become. I would not have noticed this had I gone along with my chores.

Did I get a little behind? Yes.

Does it matter? No.

Did I always feel that way? Sadly, no.

I am determined to not miss out on this precious time any longer.

Today, I’m thankful for snow days. Do you have any snow day traditions?

Monday, January 4, 2010

Overbooking weeknights...

Since my boys are only 4 & 5 you would think we wouldn’t already be busy with extra-curricular activities. Well, that hasn’t always been the case. Just this past fall, both boys were on different soccer teams and my 5 yr old participated in Upward football – which overlapped soccer a few weeks. At one point I was shuttling a kid to a practice and/or game daily. While these programs had their rewards, I had to step back and ask myself “Why are we doing this?”. We were sacrificing family time at home and many times our dinners were late and not always very nutritious.

When registration for basketball came up, my 5 yr old assumed he would play. He loves to play basketball and I really enjoy watching him play, but we decided not to participate and take this spring semester off completely from sports – no basketball, no soccer. It seems silly to even be writing this, he’s only 5 for pete’s sake. But like so many we get caught up in not wanting him to ‘miss out’ on anything. Silly

Can I tell you how nice it has been already? Not only are our afternoons calmer, but I can tell a difference in the boys’ behavior. Shocking, isn’t it?

Lest you think I have it all under control, the crazy over-booker inside of me almost signed both boys up for swim. I thought “we have all this free time (right) so we could do swim”. I really am insane at times. I fought the urge and we are still sports-free this semester.

Let me make it clear that I don’t think these activities are bad. In fact, in addition to the exercise and learning of the actual sport, they have learned valuable social skills. They are just not the best thing for my family at this time. There will be many years to enjoy these activities – in moderation.

We’ll see what the fall semester holds. Stay tuned.

How do you feel about sports and other extra-curricular activities? I would love to hear how you balance being involved without getting over-booked.

Just getting started

I have been thinking about starting this blog for a while but am finally taking the plunge.  Feel free to join me as I blog about taking a step in a new direction.  I'm not sure I will have the chance to blog daily, but check back to see what I've been up to. 
I look forward to reading any comments or suggestions.