Homemade Laundry Soap

When I was at home this summer, my Mom was on the homemade laundry soap bandwagon.  I tried some of it and liked it, so decided to join in the fun.

Here are the ingredients:

1 Box of Super Washing Soda 3 lb. 7 oz.
1 Box of Borax 4 lbs 12 oz. size
1 Box of Pure Baking Soda 4 lb.
3 bars of Fels-Naptha 5.5 oz. or you could also use Ivory soap
1 container of Oxy-Clean 1.3 lb
*optional: Purex Crystals 28 oz. for scent (or you could use Downy unstoppables )

Note: I did get the Purex Crystals in a fairly neutral scent.

The Ingredients!

The Ingredients!

First I cut up the soap into chunks and ground it with my blender. I have the world’s worst blender, so this wasn’t as easy as it seemed and I had to do it in little batches. Next time, I’d add some of the baking soda to keep it from sticking so much. I also will use my food processor.  No way I was grating all that by hand!

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After grinding up the soap, I took it all outside and poured all ingredients into a big box, layering each ingredient by thirds to make later mixing easier. Then it’s stir, stir, stir. Try not to breathe in the dust. Wear a mask if you need to!

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The final result is a huge box of laundry soap. I put a 1/8 cup scoop into the box and that is all you need for a load of laundry. For front loaders, just put the soap on top of the laundry.  It takes out dirt, garden stains, garage stains and best of all:   this soap takes out doggy smell from dog bedding!  I still use Tide for my good clothes, but for everything else, especially towels and sheets, this soap is perfect.  I have enough to last me a very long time and I spent about $25.  Not bad!


Potato Tower Update!

Houston, we have potatoes!

So, the tatie tower was a moderate success.  I’m not sure I rightly remember how many potatoes I planted in the tower, but from the harvest, it looks like I got at least 3 potatoes for one planted. Next year I will try to remember to fertilize more, although I did use Miracle Gro soil and lots of compost.  I can remember digging up potatoes as a kid, but don’t remember how many we planted.  I looked it up and you should get three regular size potatoes and some smaller ones for each seed planted, so I think we did OK.  I have lots of mini potatoes, for which I know you pay a mint in the grocery store!

I didn’t plant that many to begin with, not being sure what I was doing and how the layers would work. Next time, I can plant more layers within the tower and space the sets further apart. I think that will make a big difference in yield.  This was a live-and-learn experiment for sure!

All in all, a pretty exciting evening digging through the dirt and finding these little golden gems.  I plan to cook them with some green beans and smoked sausage here in a day or two.  What fun! We will plant two more towers next year, just to see what happens and try some purple potatoes.  It was a pretty stress-free growing method (read: I did nothing but water when it didn’t rain).  We did have a nice little black snake baby living under the tower. He was very confused when we took away his roof.  I’m glad he had a safe warm place to grow up. As long as he stays out of the house, ha ha!

Potato Harvest 1  The Potato Tower goes down!

Potato Harvest 2

What we saw as we took apart the straw and dirt.

Lots of dirty gems!

Lots of dirty gems!

Rinsed off and waiting for a skillet.

Rinsed off and waiting for a skillet.