Saturday, April 23, 2011

Homemade Cleaners and What They Have to Do With Holy Weekend

Ingredients for Soap Jelly (taken yesterday, as you can see the sunshine on the bowl!)

Ingredients for homemade dishwasher detergent
Greetings on this cold, rainy/snowy Holy Saturday. Although I don't care for this weather, it seems a bit appropriate for the day, at least to my way of thinking. I can't help but wonder how the apostles and followers of Jesus must have felt that Saturday so many years ago. Aren't we blessed to know that tomorrow there will be rejoicing?!

So, you're probably wondering what in the world I mean by the title of today's post. (Then again, perhaps some of you are already familiar with the following concept!) In the past, Lent has been a time of Spring cleaning for both the soul and the home. (I couldn't find the specific sites about this, but if you Google "spring cleaning and Lent" you'll find some more info. there.) That being said, don't feel guilty or panicked if you haven't or don't plan on spring cleaning your home. You are in good company! I'm still playing catch up from when I worked nearly a month ago! However, with yesterday's sunshine, an impressive amount of money going out for the kiddo's baseball, and an urge to be more self sufficient, I looked up some recipes for homemade cleaners and detergents. 

I've been making my own laundry detergent for about a year now, and am very happy with the results. I got the recipe from the Duggar Family's siteI've only had to make it twice in the last year, and with it costing only about $2 to make a batch, it is well worth it! I ran out of stain remover, and rather than paying at least $2 for it at the store, I remembered the link to a recipe for homemade soap jelly for laundry stains. It's super easy and cheap to make! I used a one quart canning jar and it took about 3/4 of a bar. The one thing it didn't mention in the recipe is that you may want to stir it a few times as it cools. It separated into a bright yellow liquid with a cloudy white layer at the bottom, and I don't know if it would have jelled properly if I hadn't stirred it. I've yet to use it, but I'm confident!

I had also run out of dishwasher tabs. We use Cascade tabs with Dawn and bleach. After reading this, I returned the unopened bag I had bought and picked up a pack of pink lemonade. (I had the rest of the ingredients already). I doubled the recipe to nearly fill a 1 qt. canning jar. I added 4 packs of  pink lemonade Kool-Aid for the citric acid, and kept one out to clean the dishwasher. (Read this article to learn more about cleaning your dishwasher) Again, I haven't used it yet, but I've had to use borax and baking soda before when we'd run out of tabs, and was fine with the result. I think the addition of citric acid and kosher salt will "pump up" the results! I think I will also add a small squirt of Dawn to help cut grease because we use Tupperware plates and tumblers.  I'll let you all know how it works when I've used it!

My plans for Holy Week did not go as, well, planned! I was gone every evening this week either for a church activity or baseball practice. It seemed as though time flew by and there wasn't any extra to work on crafts or put an effort into special meals that would just get wolfed down before heading off the the field. Next year I won't hold off on the crafts until the end, and try to not book so much during the week. Of course, Lent and Easter were late this year, so baseball shouldn't be a factor for 2012. I'm obviously much better at planning than executing said plans!

Blessing for a Happy and Meaningful Resurrection Sunday friends. May it be filled with joy, love, family and His presence.

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