Friday, August 19, 2011

Finding my way

WOW! It's been a super busy week. I never realized how much I depended on my husband being home and helping out with the kids. Yes, it's been a long two years of unemployment, but wow, he was uber helpful around here.
Homeschooling while a teething baby is around is not easy. Forgive me if I ever thought it was! My Jonathan was SO easy. He would spend hours in baby jail while I schooled the girls. Now I am schooling five kids and Lily wants to be in the middle of it all. To top it all off I was in charge of ALL the meals! I can't remember the last time I was in charge of all the meals!
Can I say, none of my household projects got done this week? Not one. I'm thankful I have my kids on a strict chore routine or my house would have fallen down around my ears!
His training is done now and he will probably be assigned a security guard post next week so we can figure out a schedule then. More than likely it will be a night post so we'll just work around that.
I did get all my schooling done this week, so I'm proud of that! :)
I'm thankful for the job, but I sure do miss having my honey around!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Make It Yourself Part 2

I got so much accomplished yesterday! I love days like that. Of course I probably should have saved some of this for other blog posts but I was very happy to have done what I did. Although I will admit doing it all took less than an hour. Everything was so easy. :)
I started with powdered laundry detergent.
The video I watched, that of course I can't find right now, she cut the bar of soap (I used Fels Naptha after finding it at Publix, but have since learned plain old Ivory soap works as well) into chunks and put them in the food processor.
She then added 1/2 cup of Borax and 1/2 cup of washing soda. I forgot the picture of putting a wet kitchen towel over the processor. It's supposed to keep everything contained. Even doing this I had particles of the stuff all over my counter. Next time I will do it at a table no where near my other kitchen stuff. I had to clean my toaster out because it had soap flakes all in it. LOL
It came out all ground up and mixed together. She said she uses about 1 Tblsp for her laundry. I figured I'd start there and see how it works. I was going to make the liquid but this looked so much easier. I have another bar of soap so next time I will make the liquid and see which one I like better. I'll let you know how it works. We have a little bit of detergent left so as soon as that runs out, probably today, we'll try this out.
My second project was some all purpose cleaner. Super duper easy. A spray bottle filled about half way full with plain ole white vinegar.
A few drops of GSE for a little more disinfection power and to give it a slight citrusy smell. I think I give the bottle three to four squeezes. It lasts forever!

I always add in some hot water and there I have all purpose cleaner or vinegar cleaner as the kids call it. It does smell very vinegary coming out of the bottle when you spray but the smell disappears in just a minute or two.
Then I made some strawberry yogurt. I usually make my own yogurt using the crockpot method, but it takes about 1/2 a galllon of milk and I only had 1 gallon. So I just grabbed two containers of plain full fat yogurt. All of our dairy products are full fat because it's actually a good fat and I have lots of growing little people around here. Surprisingly, Dannon is the only yogurt I can find that comes plain and full fat. I pulled out a bag of frozen strawberries (and only used about half the bag) and my Stevia baking blend. I discovered it when I was pregnant. I was on a very strict low carb diet while pregnant and craving something sweet. I researched and researched a safe alternative sweetener and this is what I came up with. I use it all the time and LOVE it. It does not effect my blood sugar. I bought mine at a health food store here in town.
I was going to use my food processor but it was getting cleaned up from the laundry soap so I pulled out my smoothie maker.
I dumped in one container of yogurt, maybe about 1/3 c of the sugar blend, and 2-3 hand-fulls of frozen strawberries. Blend, blend, blend and repeat with another container of yogurt, more sugar, and more strawberries.
It made about 3 jars of strawberry yogurt. One jar came out very smoothie like but the other two were still pretty thick and creamy. Isn't it pretty? :) I don't know if it was very economical, but I had fun doing it and it tastes so good!
Well that was my yesterday afternoon. Today I need to make some bread and tortillas.
I also have some pics and stuff from the 31 Days to a Cleaner Home Challenge. I have really enjoyed the tasks and it's helping me see some stuff I left undone before.
On a very bright note, my DH starts a job on Monday. Yep! We are very excited. He'll spend next week in a training class so I'll have some extra time to get some stuff done. I love having him home but we have not had a real routine in awhile. I can't set up a routine yet though around his schedule because the job he has we don't know what shift he'll get yet. When he does we'll work around that.
Since I'll have the computer I might even get to blog a bit more. ;)
I hope you all have a great weekend.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Make It Yourself

Before my whole Lily surprise I used to make a lot of stuff myself. Bread, yogurt, seasonings, cleaning products... the list goes on. It's been probably 2 years since I filled my cupboards and cleaning cabinets with my own stuff.
I bought my starter yogurt and some frozen fruit to add in and I have everything to make my laundry soap so that's what I'll be working on tomorrow or Saturday. I'll try to remember to take pictures. I also need to make some all purpose cleaner, but that's super simple.
Basically I use equal parts water and vinegar and add in grapefruit seed extract. Put it in the spray bottle and go to town. Simple and it really does work.
After 2.5 years of unemployment we are down to really stretching every penny. I've been watching some Youtube videos and trying to figure out other stuff I can make. I found hand soap, dish washing soap, shampoo.. it's all out there. I might try some of that stuff as well.
What are some things you make yourself?

Thursday, August 04, 2011

Leave it undone

O Lord, may I be directed what to do and what to
leave undone.
Elizabeth Fry

Something I TRULY need to pray every day. How quickly the days seem to be going. As my lazy summer winds down I am faced with a busy year ahead. I'm going to write this down and put it on my calendar.

Monday, August 01, 2011

My vision for my home.

I started the 31 days to clean challenge today.
I had to write out my mission statement for my home. It actually turned into more of a vision.
The whole thing boiled down to one sentence.

I want my home to be a safe refuge for all who enter from the world.

That sums it up.
I want:
Joy and
in my home.

I can't have any of the above with mess and clutter and disorder.
I'm looking forward to the challenge.