Fresh & Clean

I finally got around to making laundry soap yesterday. One of those things that I have wanted to do for years , but never actually did it. I can't figure out what took me so long, it was so easy! I guess I was finally sick of spending over $15 a gallon at Costco for "natural soap" that I don't really know what's in it. The hardest part was choosing a recipe and finding Washing soda (apparently not the same as baking soda). In Washington state the best place to find washing soda is Fred Meyer. I also needed to find a container to hold the 2+ gallons of liquid laundry soap, and old laundry soap bucket with lid worked well. I had a junior high decorating moment, mostly to keep T from throwing my bucket out or using it for something else. I found many recipes for liquid laundry soap, almost all contained washing soda and borax. I used a recipe off  Tipnut.com. After I use up this batch I plan to try a different mix, but so far I really like this one.
Recipe #1 Liquid Laundry Soap

1 quart Water (boiling)
2 cups Bar soap (grated)
2 cups Borax
2 cups Washing Soda
Add finely grated bar soap to the boiling water and stir until soap is melted. You can keep on low heat until soap is melted.
Pour the soap water into a large, clean pail and add the Borax and Washing Soda. Stir well until all is dissolved.
Add 2 gallons of water, stir until well mixed.
Cover pail and use 1/4 cup for each load of laundry. Stir the soap each time you use it (will gel).

The first time I use a recipe I follow it close to get the correct feel and then play with the ingredients and amounts the next time around. I used Fels-Napths this time, but I think I will use one of my own homemade goat milk soaps next go 'round. It smells like what ever ground soap you use, so keep that in mind when choosing one, I think I might try some drops of essential oils next time too. Make sure and use a large pot to melt the soap on the stove, it will bubble up a lot. I tried to put it all in an old liquid soap pour container, this doesn't work as the soap almost instantly gels after you mix all the ingredients, I haven't figured out the best solution yet. Also, I haven't done the exact math, but I think for 2+ gallons, it cost less than 4 dollars, wow who could pass that savings up! My other laundry savings tip is to hang dry clothes, I only  use my dryer one in every 5 or 6 loads, that's a lot of energy savings and it's as easy as hanging up a shirt. You save more than money and energy, you save wear on your dryer and clothes and you're much less likely to shrink your favorite shirt. Rain or shine I move a folding rack on the deck or into the garage (next to the washer).Well, now on to dish soap.
And, more done on the sweater, one sleeve down one to go!

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Inspirational Growing Quotes

"Gardening requires lots of water-most of it in the form of perspiration."
~ Lou Erickson, www.quotegarden.com