Friday, June 24, 2011

Soap in your bucket!

Well, hey there!!! I haven't babbled to you in a week!! I've missed talking to you! lol. How've you been? I've been a bit busy this past week, and not a blog post to show for it.
So, Last Friday & Saturday night I was babysitting my sister-in-laws three little monsters. Amazingly, Saturday they played nice together (all night!), they were all actually quiet, I got my baby girl to fall asleep early, AND the two boys were even getting along! I'll take that as an epic win for me and my hubby.

So in that time span I didn't really get to cook anything, nothing blog-worthy anyways. Seriously, who wants to hear about me heating up frozen pizzas? I didn't think so.
But I can find something else to talk about besides what comes out of my kitchen, I'm sure. It just happens to be my favorite thing to tell you about. Capitalize on what your good at! Hmm, lets see... what else am I good at besides producing mass amounts of dirty dishes, you ask? 


Ah yes, the one necessity that no one in their right mind loves, but is forced to do. Unless, of course, you want to smell kinda funky. I actually know someone who lives like that! You wanna nickname someone Skunk? I know a person you should totally talk to! I certainly don't wanna smell funky though, so laundry has become a daily company-keeper of mine. 

Laundry, laundry, laundry! Until, of course, my washing machine broke!!! Any idea how hard it is to catch up two weeks of laundry for two adults and a baby?!?! Holy cow! It has to wait until the hubby comes home from work because he has the car, and it has to wait until whoever is being kind enough to let me use their appliances isn't climbing mountains of laundry themselves. It's taken a week and a half, three houses, and good lord knows how many loads. I cannot wait until mine gets fixed, its really one of those things that you hate until you don't have your own anymore, then you love it, you want to hug it, you want to be its friend for forever... uhhh *cough, cough* sorry lol. 

When I became a stay at home mom it became a huge adjustment stage for my husband and myself to find cheaper, more efficient methods of doing just about everything. It gets easier as time goes by, I promise. So if you're anything like me and you have a conniption fit every single time you think you can't do something right; stop, sit down and take a deep breath. I've been doing this for about 6 months now and I cannot tell you how many times I've had to follow my own advice. Yeah, sure, we don't get up every morning, throw on whatever our working outfit used to be, and head out the door, but staying at home with a little one can be just as hard, even harder sometimes. There's a lot to it! Taking care of the baby, making sure she doesn't get into anything that she shouldn't be, preparing meals, making nap time happen, cleaning the house, changing diapers, mending torn clothes, doctors appointments, cooking meals for the adults, doing laundry, cuddling the baby because she bumped her head on the coffee table, making bedtime happen, packing lunch for daddy, doing dishes, picking up after every ones gone to bed, its a big list that goes on and on, in no particular order either. But it all can most certainly be accomplished. Corners can be cut and money can be saved in the process. You can get around the brand names that possess America. Once I realized this my life became SO much easier.

Today, I'm gonna share one of my favorite ways that I've cut the proverbial brand named cord. My laundry soap. Oh Yes!!! Expensive bottles of crazy colored soap need not apply! I make my own, right here in my house.  It's really easy and it's also extremely cheap. Now, since I made my last batch about a month ago, it never really dawned on me to take pictures of the momentous occasion of penny pinching glory. So I'll give you at least pictures from the internet of what the packages of the ingredients look like, I know it helped me find them when I first went out looking.

Here's what your going to need:

A 5-gallon bucket (If you can't get your hands on a free one, I've heard that you can buy them at Walmart for around $4.00)
A large painters stick (for stirring)
20 Mule Team Borax (A box of this can be found at Walmart in the laundry isle for about $1.75)

1 bar of Fels Naptha (This can be found at Walmart in the laundry isle for about $1.00)

Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda (This can be found at Walmart in the laundry isle for about $1.25)
**NOTE: You want to make sure you get the super washing SODA & not the super washing Detergent.**

Here's what you need to do:

Fill a medium sized pot about half way full of water, put it on the stove to heat. You want it to be hot, but not boiling.

While the water is heating up, take your bar of Fels Naptha and cut it up to really really small pieces by whatever means necessary. I've heard of using a cheese grater for this, I bet its probably a really effective way of going about this step. I used a knife and a cutting board & went to town on my bar of soap.

Once your water is warm & your soap is all nice & chopped up, put the soap in the pot. Stir until all of the soap has disintegrated & your left with just liquid. Turn the stove off.

Pour your pot of soap water into the 5-gallon bucket.

Add 1 measured cup of the Super Washing Soda

Add 1 measured cup of the Borax.

Stir like a mad man until all of the powder has dissolved.

Take your pot that you melted the soap in, fill it with hot tap water. Then pour that into the bucket and stir.
Continuously do this until the liquid is about 3 inches from the rim.

Let your new laundry soap cool over night.

Your going to have to stir it like a mad man again about three times, a few hours apart before the soap actually stays the way it should. You don't have to stay up all night doing this, I ended up stirring it whenever it happened to cross my mind in the next 14 hour span.

There you have it! Your very own laundry soap!!! Do you have this amazing feeling of self-accomplishment now?!? That feeling is like a drug to me.

When your doing your laundry, about 1/4 - 1/2 cup of detergent is all you really need for a normal load. I just keep a plastic cup by my bucket & wing it.

If your anything like me and you just HAVE to see what it feels like in that bucket, your hand should run through what feels like gooey water. You'll actually feel it going thru your fingers. Don't worry, that's how its supposed to feel. Seriously, there's really not many ways to do this wrong.

Now here's some more amazing news! The best I can figure, my laundry detergent will cost me around about $25 a YEAR now. That's what it used to cost me in a month & a half!!!! For that price, my laundry is softer than ever, stains come out just as easily, and I'm not scrounging about looking for change because I'm running low on Tide.

AND! my last bit of amazing news! I know a lot of you have those awesome washers that require HE detergent. Well the only thing that makes the HE detergent special is the fact that its low sudsing. Yepp, that's right, your paying all that money on special detergent because it makes fewer bubbles. The great news is this laundry soap that I just told you how to make is also a low sudsing formula. That makes this a win for everyone!

Now you can launder with pride!

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