Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Homemade Laundry Soap & A Calf Lost

Our Carrara heifer has lost her calf.  Big bummer.  A couple months ago she spotted, but didn't miscarry.  Her belly continued to swell, but has smooth, straight sides now. 

Our cows live with a herd (not ours), so we do not know exactly when or what happened.  This is one of those times I'd really like to have them out our door so that they could be micro-managed.  But, she may have just needed more time to grow, and now she has it!  The scary bit is that he thinks that Ruby may have lost her calf also.  This would really make us assess our current management, and really be a downer because we love a baby and the milk we sneak.  It would mean no cheese, butter, milk... *wahhh*

Ever onwards.

Today's very exciting news: I made laundry detergent!


No, it's easy.  Shopping for the ingredients is much more time consuming than making it.
Here's what you use:

1 bar soap (unscented, dye-free) like Ivory, grated
1/2 c Borax (available at most grocery stores)
1/2 c Washing soda (purchased at my Ace Hardware store)
Optional: Couple drops of essential oil if you've got it

Mix it.  Use it.
1 tbsp for normal loads
2 tbsp for filthy loads (ooooooh do we have these!!)

Here's the thing, this stuff works way better on my husbands nasty, oily, grimy, greasy, dirty pants than the products from the store.  I feel like I need to say it twice; way better!  Please give it a try, you'll be doing loads of laundry for pennies and they'll be just as clean - or cleaner - than before.  PLUS, my clothes are softer now, the Borax helps with softening the water.  I am still using a tablespoon of fabric softener, but only because I don't have any essential oils at this point.  Also, I like to use what I've got rather than throw it away.

My hair is still liking the "shampoo-free" method, but is now very much in the midst of the "adjustment period," which will last anywhere from three weeks to three months.  Have to get all my natural oil production balanced out, then the hair oiled naturally.  It's probably going to take a while.  I've got a lot of hair, and luckily, a few braiding skills. 

It feels very, very good to make these little things myself.  Knowing I'm saving a bit of money helps, and knowing that it is better for my family is wonderful.  My favorite part though, is that it was made here, in our home, by me!  No adding it to the shopping list!


Susan said...

That is such a shame. I hope that Ruby has NOT lost her calf. And thanks for the great laundry detergent recipe! I have most of the "ingredients" so I will give it a try.

Erin said...

We'll find out in a week or two if she's in heat. The cows she is with are calving. Subsequently they are also cycling...which causes the other girls to "bull" them. It was her bulling another, not standing (meaning a full-blown heat) so I'm encouraged by that!

Please let me know how the detergent works for you.