Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Homemade Laundry Detergent!!!

Wow..it feels like a lifetime since I posted on my blog...I have been neglecting all my crafting duties and basically becoming and absolute slacker when it comes to creativity. But I still have an obsession with Pinterest and frequently hawk the boards for ideas, recipes, crafts, and just about anything that I don't have the gumption or energy to do. Recently I have seen numerous pins about making your own laundry detergent, and as a crazed coupon queen, I'm always looking for a way to save on this type of household necessity. I hate when I have to spend money on things like cleaning supplies. Yes, I love a clean house, but dang it..why must I spend a fortune and breathe deadly chemicals in order to get it...I know some of you will say try the green friendly cleaning products, but I have...and honestly, either this family is too trashy for Green or they just don't work...I'm going with the latter... Anyway, I decided to try this idea of homemade laundry detergent...I read all the reviews and blog post comments and it seemed like everyone was having real success with it. I also wanted to make sure I wasn't going to screw up my HE front loader machine...my husband and my bank account would not be happy if I ended up saving a few bucks, just to turn around and spend quadruple to replace this machine. I did my homework and figured how much all the ingredients would cost and if I thought it would save me money. Well, I'm not a math whiz, in fact, I am the opposite of a math whiz, I'm probably the most unmathly(obviously not a word) person that walked the Earth...so I don't know the amount per load it will save me, but I truly feel it will be quite a bit and enough to put forth the effort to try it. In addition, this amount of detergent should last me a good 9 months. So, here is the link from the original poster...if you get a chance, I would read some of the comments...it gives great advice as to how others have tweaked it to suit their tastes. Below is what I did:

Homemade Laundry Detergent

1 4lb 12 oz box Borax (2.15 kg or 76 oz)
1 4lb box Arm & Hammer Baking Soda (1.81 kg)
1 box Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda 55 oz (3 lb 7 oz)
1 Bottle of Downy Crystals (any scent)
3 bars of Fels-Naptha soap
 3 lb container of Oxy Clean or store brand Oxy Clean
(this is optional)

I found all these items on the detergent aisle of my local Walmart


**Use 1-2 Tablespoons per load. I know that does not seem like enough but this recipe does not have fillers like the store bought detergent so you only need 1-2 Tablespoons.Your water will not suds up, which is why it is good for HE machines, and I add the detergent straight to the drum of my machine, not the cup drawer. **

Your first step will be to get a large enough bucket that will hold about 2lbs of laundry detergent...I used a 3lb. bucket lined with a garbage bag (to help with the mixing).
Grate the soap...this is the part that takes the most time...but it only took me about 5 minutes to do 3 bars!

Grated Soap!

Now, if you have a High Efficiency machine, you must grate the soap even more...I used the pulse setting on my food processor. Don't use the "on" setting, if you grind it too much it will melt and become a blob...don't let your soap become a blob!!

Add your ingredients one by one into a 3-5 gallon bucket (I lined my bucket with a garbage bag) or get your little helpers to add it for you
. VERY IMPORTANT-if you have young one's helping you, remember that the ingredients will cloud, be careful that they don't inhale any harmful fumes..and remember that if they get soap on their hands, it WILL burn their eyes if they touch them....just a little helpful  hint from me to you, after spending 30 minutes rinsing my 9 year old's eyeball!!

Oxy Clean

These are the Downy Crystals...they smell so good!
Washing Soda...don't forget to add your grated soap!!
Now stir it up really, really good!!!

Once we finished adding all the ingredients and mixing it with a spoon, I took the garbage bag out, tied the top and mixed it around with my hands...just to make sure it was all good and blended. I added it back to the bucket and transferred a portion of it to my decorative glass laundry jar...woohoo! As an added bonus, my house smelled good for days!
 I have noticed a difference in my laundry...not only does it smell faboo...but it seems to be brighter and whiter. Even without a degree in math, I figure it isn't too bad to spend less than $20 for 9 months of laundry detergent and 15 minutes of my time. Good luck and hopefully all of you who had a curiosity of how it all works and if it was any good, will want to try it for yourselves.
Happy washing!!!

Friday, September 30, 2011

Do YUDU monograms???

I have really been on a roll lately, I have been trying to get my crafting groove going and so far so good....I posted earlier my Art Display Board (I have actually made two), and I have been fighting my newest crafting appliance..YUDU!! Can I just say, I love my sister and husband for thinking of me on my birthday and presenting me with such a thoughtful gift...but ummm...I abhor this machine...It has been the biggest nightmare ever and I just hope that at some point, I can figure it out!! If anyone has any tips, other than throwing it into the Gulf, please comment...I am at a loss!! Now, back to the successes...The girls are so excited about how their Halloween costumes are coming out, but as usual, they are wavering about what they want to be...let me tell you, my children will be wearing these costumes I have slaved over even if I have to dress them up and duct tape the costumes to their little puny bodies!!! Just a joke...don't call CPS on me...They do this to me every year and every year I swear that I will never make a homemade costume again. But they were so excited about what they wanted to be and I warned them, no last minute changes!!
Anyway,let me get back to the subject at hand..Here is what I tackled yesterday!!

Number 2 has been bugging me to buy her these horrible boots...I'm sorry, I know alot of you love them and think they are adorable, but I see a Fred Flinstone foot...they just are very unattractive...but while I was laying in bed at 3:00 a.m., my mind started to wander and of course it wandered to my boyfriend "Cricut"....and he called to me saying "please use me, please dust off the fuzz balls and USE ME!!" So the next morning I woke up and started brainstorming...I like to put it in writing, just little notes to inspire me...which brought me to the boots...Number two loves them so much and I have seen them with all kinds of things, Hello Kitty, Hannah Montana, plain, fuzzy(looks like dog fur), cheap, expensive and just about any color you could think of...I hated them all. So I thought, how can I make them better and I remembered when I did the Wellies..
DING, DING, DING!!! Winner winner chicken dinner....I would monogram them!!! Everything looks better with a monogram!! Right? Right? Of course....so here they are and Number 2 has never been more excited about a pair of boots in her life and of course I got major "Mommy Points"...

let me know what you think and please follow me.. I also beg of you, if you know how to make this YUDU easier, leave a comment, or buy some scuba gear, because it will end up in the water at the bottom of the Gulf if I don't figure it out soon!!!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Fridgeless Picassos

It has truly been a week I would like to forget...#2 had some sort of funky illness that lasted 5 days and I literally have been mired down in germs and antibiotics to last a lifetime.....but there was one day of creativity!
After what seems to be an endless amount of school work coming home from the first few weeks of school, there is always the question of what to keep and what to toss. The problem I have is that I have nowhere to display these works of art.What if my kid is a Picasso, Rembrandt or Monet?? Who would discover their talent in the bottom of my Rubbermaid trash can or the dusty office box hidden in my closet? NOBODY!! Another issue is my refrigerator is stainless and as most of you probably know, there is no place to stick cute fridge magnets. What a dillema right?
So while searching my newest obsession "Pinterest", I found the solution...check out this adorable Kids Art Display at A Little of This, a Little of That...So stinking cute. I loved it and thought this is my answer.

Well off to find my supplies and this is what I came up with:

1x8 board (cut in half)
paint (unfortunately don't make the mistake and use enamel paint..it makes a disgusting gooey mess that you will be struggling with for about 2 hours.)
sandpaper(again, gooey, nasty mess when trying to weather)
clips (I used drapery hooks, because I had 6 packs that I have had for about 3 years and never used, plus, I couldn't leave #2 to go to Walmart)
Wood glue (thank goodness hubby is a contractor)
Beer tabs or Soda can tabs (umm...I'll let you guess which one's I used...hey, don't judge!!!)
Lettering (optional, but you know how I have a love affair with my Cricut)

So here is what I did:

Spray paint your board.

And here is the dreaded Enamel paint...ruh roh!! What can I say I was punch drunk from being in the house so long..

The legendary .09 clips I have had for 3 years!!

The board after being weathered with sandpaper...I also whitewashed it and used a lacquer over the top...I had to do something to make the sticky enamel look better...IT WORKED!

Space your clips...if I make another one, I think I would space them out a little more...

Glue them on with wood glue.... Add some Cricut lettering and this is what you get...
I love it, it is perfect for displaying their art work and fits in great with our decor!! Now, what I didn't take pics of was the way I added hangers....I used the tabs from (ahem) my cans and glued them on with wood glue, then added a screw on top of that and it is perfect for hanging....yay me!!!

This is probably my favorite project ever...not bad for a few hours of creativity in a sea of germs, snot and sweaty feverish hell!!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

You've Got Mail!!

Well, school has started and I am so pleased and grateful that my girls have such extraordinary teachers. I try to make sure they(the teachers) know I am available to them if they need anything for the classroom or daily routine in general. My third grader's teacher, who I adore, asked me to embellish their classroom mailbox. here is what it looked like before....And of course who wouldn't want to make this better??? So here is what I came up with...

Pretty cute huh?? I think it will serve it's purpose!! And not so plain Jane...Now, get to work children!!!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Things I Love=Pinterest and Followers (but not stalkers)

Ok, my new obsession is Pinterest...if you haven't been there go now!! It's like a pin board online..it's so great and you can find some truly inspiring ideas on just about everything. If you are reading this you probably already follow me (not like a creepy stalker like follower) but you periodically find your way to my blog. I appreciate it and would love for you to follow my Pinterest page as well. Maybe we can all get a little more inspired and creative as the months are "creeping" closer to the Holidays.
So here are a few of my new favorite things I have pinned: check them out and let me know what you think about Pinterest. Maybe I'll see you there and start "stalking" I mean,"following" you!!

How about these little cuties!! I wish I had seen them prior to the first day of school, I would have tried my hand at pencil making. They are so precious!!

These would have been great for the first day of school, don't you think??

So, here were just a couple of things I have found. If you want to see more click on "follow me on Pinterest" or on the button above my post index and you can see all the fabulousness I have pinned.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Back to School Survival Kit

I know it's been a while since I have posted anything, but I wanted to share with you this cute little "Back to School Survival Kit" I put together for my girls this week. I got the idea a year ago on another gal's blog, but I can't remember what the name of it was. If anyone recognizes the idea please message me or comment, so I can give credit where credit is due...It turned out so sweet, and I was able to use things I already had around the house (yea...no Walmart). I hope you enjoy and hopefully it will inspire you to make a special memory with your children. I am so melancholy at this time of year, it makes me want to bring out the old photo albums and baby books to marvel at how my girls have grown and turned into such amazing human beings. Good luck to all of you in the upcoming weeks of back to school and maybe I'll get back some of my creativity now that the girls are back to school.

I used Laffy Taffy, Fruit Roll Up, Tootsie Roll, Hershey Kisses, Lollipops, Smarties, Pencil, Paper Clip, Rubber band, decorative bag.

I typed up the poem and used the ties to attach it to the bag.

Back to School Survival Kit
To help you get on a ROLL into the new school year, we are giving you a back to school survival kit.
There are SMARTIES to boost your brain power and
A RUBBER BAND to help you stretch your mind.
A PAPER CLIP is to remind you that you have all the tools to hold it together.
TOOTSIE ROLLS are so you remember to roll with the punches,
And a PENCIL to let you know how sharp we think you are.
There’s LAFFY TAFFY to remind you to keep your sense of humor when days are tough.
A LOLLIPOP is to help you lick any obstacles that come your way and
There are also some extra KISSES for when you might need them.
Have a great first day,

Now, the kicker is, try to give it to them prior to them leaving for school. If you forget you will be like me, sneaking into the school to slip them into the backpacks without anyone seeing!!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

(Repost) Life on Old Savannah: Our Work Here is Done!!

We are now finished with our Easter preparations...here is the Sunflower Peep Cake we made...well, Butterbean helped...Sweetpea was too busy with her program "Sonny With a Chance" to be bothered with helping. But it turned out precious. If you haven't seen them done before, there are numerous examples on the internet, however, we did ours a little different. Instead of the Peeps being upright, we turned ours upside down, that way we got more of a sunflower petal effect. Then we added a fondant ladybug (note to self..remember to slather hands with Crisco before coloring your fondant next time, now I have nice red hands for Mass tomorrow) and we used cocoa powder to color the middle above the chocolate chips. Let me know what you think and we are off the enjoy the rest of the afternoon!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

I am so Lalaloopsy Thankful!!!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone, I hope today you are all sharing family time and making memories. I will be doing that shortly, but I am very lucky, I don't have to cook a big meal, my mom and step mom always cook. I am responsible for nibbles and that suits me just fine. So, you may wonder what I have been doing with my time lately...well, let me show you....http://www.zoolert.com/ ...that's right...I've been sitting in front of my computer on this fantastic website tracking the toy of the year!! THE TOY OF THE YEAR PEOPLE!!! What?? You don't know what the toy of the year is??? Mwaahahahaha (in my most witchy voice)...well, now that I have mine, I will share with you what it is...and you better not tell anyone or you won't get one and that would be devastating to your little ones....here it is....

Lalaloopsy are these adorable rag dolls, except they really aren't rag dolls at all...they have really big plastic heads and little tiny plastic bodies...they each are sewn from different peoples old clothing and they don't come to life until the last sewn stitch...OMG!!! Last sewn stitch brings them to life...I can just picture the little elf in Santa's workshop toiling away on these little precious things and then with a final flick of a needle and thread..."Hello..I am Mittens Fluff n Stuff"...ok...that's how it goes in my head..your vision may be a little different!!
Apparently the hottest one is the this one...

This is Mittens Fluff n Stuff....she is adorable and she's alllllll mine!!! Well not really, she is for the girls, but I got one and it's like hitting the lottery....There are others....go check them out at http://www.lalaloopsy.com/.

Your girls will love these...mine will be getting a few of them... so far we have Jewel Sparkle, Mittens Fluff n Stuff, Pillow Featherhead, Spot Splatter Splash and Bea Spells Alot...so, I think I'm done..maybe. So get out there now ladies and be sure to sign up for http://www.zoolert.com/ ...they will email you when things show up online....

I hope you have a blessed and joyful Thanksgiving....eating today...SHOPPING TOMORROW!!!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Ode to Starbucks' Pumpkin Spice Latte

So you know how you hear about something and always wonder what the big deal is??? Well as a creature of Facebook, I have noticed that the latest status update has been things like "woohoo, Spiced Latte" or "OMG!!! Spiced Latte" and "Thank you Starbucks for bringing back Pumpkin Spiced Latte!!". Really??? I always thought, why are you people posting this on your status...ode to Starbucks...ridiculous!!! Well, may I express my deepest sincerest apologies to my Facebook friends, for ever doubting you. I decided, on a whim, to try one of these delectable treats yesterday, and I have to say...they truly are worthy of the reverance that has been invoked....YUMMY!!! I, of course, got the Venti, which in regular speak is the "BIG ASS COFFEE" and it was fabulous. It had the right amount of spice, pumpkin and creamy whipped cream, it was perfect for a chilly day. You don't even have to add sugar or cream...it's the Taj Mahal of coffees!!!
So, much to my surprise, I came upon a recipe this morning and just couldn't believe my eyes....my Facebook and Blogger friends are going to be sooooo excited!!! I found a recipe, courtesy of Mommytopics.com that will blow your socks off.


- Betty Crocker Super Moist Spice Cake Mix or similar

- 3 eggs

- 1 and 1/4 cup water

- 1/4 cup vegetable or olive oil

- 1 cup canned pumpkin

- 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice

- 1 can evaporated milk

- 1 can sweetened condensed milk

- 4 cups divided, heavy whipping cream strongly infused with coffee

- 2 tbsp cocoa or canned chocolate frosting

- 4 to 6 tbsp sugar

- 1 tsp Vanilla extract

- Cinnamon Sugar mixture for sprinkling


1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, or according to box mix instructions

2. Prepare spice cake in mixer according to box directions, adding 1 cup of canned pumpkin and 1/2 tsp of pumpkin pie spice

3. Divide batter into oven safe coffee cups filling each one 1/3 of the way with batter, leaving room for the cake to rise, and for lots of the Latte Whipped Cream topping

4. Bake until toothpick comes out clean

5. Mix 1 can evaporated milk, 1 can sweetened condensed milk, and 1 cup heavy whipping cream infused with coffee

6. Once cupcakes are baked and completely cooled, use a fork to puncture the tops of the cake and drench each cake with 2/3 cup tres leche and coffee mixture, store in fridge for several hours to chill and set

7. In mixer combine 2 cups heavy whipping cream strongly infused with coffee (through use of french press), cocoa or chocolate frosting, and 4 to 6 tbsp of sugar to taste. Whip on low/med for two minutes or until light and fluffy

8. Spread Whipped Latte Cream onto the tops of cupcakes, spreading smoothly to appear like a Latte

9. In mixer combine 1 cup Heavy Whipping Cream with 3 tbsp sugar and 1 tsp vanilla, whip on low/med for two minutes until fluffy

10. Add dollop of Vanilla Whipped Cream to the tops of each Pumpkin Spice Latte Cupcake, and sprinkle with Cinnamon and Sugar

*Tip – French presses can be purchased for as low as $8 in the kitchen sections of Ross and Marshalls. Slightly more expensive ones can be found at Albertsons and of course… Starbucks.

How incredible does that look??? I will definitely be making these, however, I may go the traditional cupcake route and add Cool Whip...the easier the better. You should definitely read her post, she has great step by step pictures and shows how she uses her French press to make the whipped cream topping. (Just follow the link above).
It's cold her today and I'm really thinking I'll stay in and snuggle by the fire, but not before updating my Facebook status..."woohoo..Pumpkin Spice Latte, how I love thee"...Have a great weekend!!!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Give Thanks....my mantel is done!!!

I think I can truthfully say, I am leaving my mantel alone...I have it decorated for Thanksgiving and I am not touching it again (except to change out the pictures in the frames) until the Christmas decorations are brought down from the attic...I think I have a real problem, I just can't stop myself when it comes to decorating my mantel. Nit picker queen is what I have resorted to calling myself....I just have to walk away!!! Now, I would love to see all of my followers' Fall mantels...please leave a comment with your blog link so I can have a look. Maybe if I look at other's I'll quit obsessing over mine...I may have a REAL PROBLEM!!!