So if you you've been with me a while you've seen the recipe I posted for homemade laundry soap... Well this is the same recipe (sort of) but this time I'm including a little picture tutorial.

Here's the recipe:

1/4 bar of Felps soap

1 bar of Ivory soap (I didn't use this last time)

2 cups of baking soda

2 gallons of hot water (not boiling)

What you'll need:

Cheese grater

Medium size pot

5 gallon bucket (or a container that could easily hold two gallons)

Something to stir with (I used a paint stick)

Last time I just used a full bar of Felps soap... This time I wanted to try a bit of Ivory since it works well at getting out stains simply by itself... however a bar of Ivory soap isn't as large as a bar of Felps so I used a 1/4 bar of Felps to make up the difference.

Last time I also wasn't quite prepared... So we scoured the house looking for something that would hold two gallons and we ended up using a small trash can... This time I went to Home Depot and grabbed myself a 5 gallon bucket for I think around $5. This was MUCH easier... Oh and I grabbed a handful of paint sticks on my way out. (FYI they have about a zillion uses so I always grab some when I'm there!)

First... We grate the soap... I got tired out after a bit so hubby helped me out.

Then you put the grated soap into a pot and fill with water just enough to cover the soap.

While the soap is melting over medium heat (stirring occasionally) I filled the 5 gallon bucket with two gallons of hot tap water. By this time soap is melted and I add it to the bucket with the water. Then finally I add the baking soda and stir.

You should end up with a bucket full of liquidy goop.

I then used a funnel and filled two empty gallon jugs with my new laundry soap. Remember to label those containers!!! Oh and pour slowly and keep an eye out for overflowing bubbles!! I did a little at a time to let the bubbles settle.

So there you have it! Easy peasy! A little goes a long way and keep in mind this will not give you suds... But that doesn't mean it's not doing its job! I add about 1/4 to 1/2 cup depending on the size of the load.

This batch seems to be working out just fine... However, for some reason that I cannot pinpoint yet... I think I liked it better when I used the full bar of Felps with no Ivory. If you haven't heard of Felps it can be found in the laundry aisle at Walmart.

Oh and have I mentioned that I throw in about a 1/2 cup of vinegar to the load as well as a fabric softener and static reducer? It works wonders!!

Who here loves ketchup on their fries??  I DO!!!  Mmmmm.... I must say it is one of my true obsessions.  Have you ever seen Grease 2?  When Michelle Pfeiffer orders EXTRA ketchup on her burger.... and they end up forgetting it completely... I don't know why but every time I eat a veggie burger with fries, in my head I'm always saying "Nooo ketchup!" and imagine myself grabbing one of those old fashioned pointy top red ketchup bottles and squirting a mountain of ketchup on my burger. LOL!

Ahem... Okay so anyway... who knew one could love ketchup even more than I do right?  Well... ladies and gents (are gents even reading my blog?) it has happened... I've fallen in love with ketchup even more than before!  Here's a little recent history for you... My dear sweet husband decided to get me an early (okay VERY early) Mother's Day gift.  You see I've had my eye on some beautiful stainless steel cookware with the outer copper lining by AllClad.  Well I knew it would forever be a dream because of the hefty price on ONE piece let alone the entire set.  So every now and then I look to see what other cookware sets are out there that come close in comparison to the AllClad.  Well lo' and behold I found it... at COSTCO!! The Kirkland Signature 18/10 Stainless Steel 13 piece Cookware set!!  The second I saw it I fell in love and thought it even prettier than the AllClad set!  Every time we went to Costco I just went to go see it and make sure they still had it.  Although it was very reasonably priced I could not justify buying something at that cost for myself so it went into the dream book once again... that is until, my husband came home with it one day!  It has been a DREAM to cook with and I am extremely satisfied with my beautiful new cookware!

So what... in... the... WORLD does this have to do with ketchup you ask?  LOL... Okay I'm getting there... The only down side (or so I thought) to my new cookware was that after only the first use/wash the beautiful copper outer lining turned to a dark not so pretty color.  I thought maybe I had done something wrong and that I ruined my pretty copper/stainless steel cookware that I had waited so long for.  I did some research online and came across several articles making it look like it was just something I was going to have to live with.  UNTIL.... I came across an article about the problem I was having and the use of ketchup... just put some ketchup on it and wipe it off it said.  I kind of gave a chuckle and thought to myself... well in the least it'll be a fun experiment... I'll give it a try sometime.  Well the next morning I was in the kitchen scrambling up an egg for my little man... and one of my cookware pieces was right there just staring at me... I thought "hey why not?!" and grabbed it and the bottle of ketchup out of the fridge... I put the pot upside down in the sink and squirted a line of ketchup over the discolored copper.  I went back to making my son's egg and by the time that egg went from pan to plate (which was VERY quick), I looked over at my pot and saw the ketchup sliding down the side revealing the bright copper lining that had greeted me right out of it's packaging.  It worked!!! And in RECORD time!!! Don't believe me?  Take a gander! 
LOL pardon my reflection but I wanted you guys to get the best view of the copper and I couldn't seem to get out of the reflection path!
There you have it! Amazing isn't it!?  Well you can bet I won't be using my organic ketchup for this task... maybe if I splurge on some french fries over the weekend I'll ask for my usual 'EXTRA ketchup!" and save a few packets for cleaning my pots and pans!  I'd say even though ketchup was already high on my list... it's down right Magickal now and it's being added to my broomstick closet!
A Song from the Suds

Queen of my tub, I merrily sing,
While the white foam raises high,
And sturdily wash, and rinse, and wring,
And fasten the clothes to dry; 
Then out in the free fresh air they swing,
Under the sunny sky.

I wish we could wash from our hearts and our souls
The stains of the week away,
And let water and air by their magic make
Ourselves as pure as they; 
Then on the earth there would be indeed
A glorious washing day!

Along the path of a useful life
Will heart's-ease ever bloom; 
The busy mind has no time to think
Of sorrow, or care, or gloom; 
And anxious thoughts may be swept away
As we busily wield a broom.

I am glad a task to me is given
To labor at day by day;
For it brings me health, and strength, and hope,
And I cheerfully learn to say-
"Head, you may think; heart, you may feel;
But hand, you shall work always!"

~Louisa May Alcott~
_Remember you don't want to soak your wood floors... the way I do it is use a gallon jug to mix up the recipe then pour into a spray bottle, spray onto a section of the floors and wipe with cloth or paper towel.... repeat till your floors are clean!

1 gallon water
1/2 cup vinegar
20 drops of essential oil
_This was the first one I made... It's working great but when I'm out of it I'll probably try another recipe just to see what I like best.  I probably could have added more soap because it turned out a little too watery but it still cleans fine.  Typically you will see recipes that contain Borax.  I specifically looked for recipes that do not use Borax because it can be toxic to pets and children so I don't feel comfortable with that. 

1 bar Felp's soap (grated)
2 cups baking soda
2 gallons hot water (not boiling)

Melt soap in saucepan w/enough water to cover, add to water, stir.  Add in baking soda, stir.
_For the times after your family has been sick... wipe everything down with this to get rid of germs!

2 cups water
1/4 cup vinegar
1/4 tsp. tea tree oil
1/4 tsp. lavender oil