Homemade liquid Laundry Soap VS Store bought liquid laundry soap

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Posted by kat | Posted in Money | Posted on 29-09-2012

Several months ago, wrote a post about making laundry soap.  That particular time I was making dry laundry soap and I spent about $8.00 and I had forgotten to record how many load’s it did and what not.   This time around I am doing liquid soap and I spent $12.00 to buy all the stuff and then I made a batch, a batch which is 5 gallon’s worth, cost be $2.30.  Out of that $12.00, I had enough washing soda and borax to make almost three batches, so all I have to do is buy more Fels-Naptha to make three batches, walmart sells it for $.97 a bar.  One batch I made the way it says to do it and the second batch I diluted it to make enough for two batches worth.   I did regular batch and diluted batch to see if there was a difference in how it cleaned or not.  This is the same recipe the Dugger’s use but they diluted to make 10 gallon’s of soap out of a single batch of soap mix.    I currently buy liquid laundry soap and it cost’s me $7.97 for 160 load’s worth, so if I can get the same cleanliness out of the stuff I made and the same number of load’s, it will be worth making it myself.     If you don’t want to use this particular recipe, you can try these links.  Some of the link’s are for dry soap and some are for liquid.

http://www.thefamilyhomestead.com/laundrysoap.htm

http://www.thesimpledollar.com/2008/04/09/making-your-own-laundry-detergent-a-detailed-visual-guide/

http://tipnut.com/10-homemade-laundry-soap-detergent-recipes

 

While this the link below is not for Laundry soap, I still thought it was neat and will be trying it at some point.
http://frugalliving.about.com/od/cleaningtipsandrecipes/qt/Dish_Detergent.htm

 

Fall Garden

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Posted by kat | Posted in Gardening(herbs, flowers,veggies and trees) | Posted on 10-09-2012

This spring, I didn’t plant a garden as I was trying to get raised bed’s in.  I got a few in and finally got them filled with compost and got a few things planted for the fall garden.

I have planted: Sugar snap pea’s, straight neck and crooked neck squash as well as something called Black Beauty, I also planted butternut squash.  The squash is doing well and has bloom’s on them already.   I also planted pickling cucumber’s, green beans, (salad bowl mix) lettuce, radishes, cabbage, broccoli and bell pepper’s.  I didn’t plant spinach, because it was listed in the salad bowl mix of lettuce, but I don’t think it came up, so I might have to plant some.  I didn’t plant any beet’s either, but I might just have to see if I can still plant them.

I have replanted most of my herb’s in the raised beds.  There are a few herb’s I still need to plant, but can’t plant from seed’s until spring.   Lavender,  Tarragon, Garlic Chives, Dill, Cilantro, and Chamomile.

Weight loss

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Posted by kat | Posted in Family Happenings | Posted on 07-09-2012

I have never considered myself fat or have ever considered I had a eating disorder.  So when I mentioned to some friends, that I wanted to lose weight, they kept telling me that I didn’t have any to lose.   When I got married, I weighed 115lbs, when I got pregnant with each of my kids I weighed 115lbs.  After having had my youngest, I had some hormone issues and had to go on Birth Control, to try and balance out my hormone levels which were either too high or too low.  When I started my weight loss, I was at the heaviest I had ever been and not been pregnant, with my first two pregnancies, I weight 175lbs when I they weighed me at the hospital a few hours before I had them.  With my youngest I had Gestational Diabetes and had to be very careful of what I ate, I weight 150 lbs with her, and it ended up being my smallest baby at 5lbs 13oz.
So when I weighed myself at the start of trying to lose weight, I was suprised that I weighed 140.5lbs, to most that might not seem like a lot, but I am only 5 ft 3in tall and while I looked like I might only weigh 130lbs, I could feel the difference, but didn’t realize just how much a few extra pounds really could make you feel.  I couldn’t walk up my driveway without huffing and a puffing like the big bad wolf,  I couldn’t find in any of my clothes( depending on who makes it, I could wear a size 5-10)  I was stuffing myself into my clothes, because I din’t want and couldn’t afford to buy new clothes.   I was tried all the time, and not just because I am a mom with three kids.  So how did I get started?  I didn’t start counting calories, like I had to when I was pregnant with my youngest, I started not going back for second’s, I made sure I always drank a glass or two of water or milk, to fill in the cracks. I also made sure that I had fruit and veggies on hand.  I can get the same satisfaction, out of eating an apple or a small bowl of carrot’s, that I can get out of eating candy.  Don’t get me wrong, there are some day’s when I want the candy more than I want the veggie’s and fruit.   I decided I was only going to check my weight Monday – Friday’s and that Saturday and Sunday’s were going to be the only day’s. that I would allow myself to eat how I wanted.  I figured out what I wanted to weigh.   Several year’s ago for my birthday, I had asked for the Wii Fit, I couldn’t find my Wii Fit game disk, so I went to my nearest GameStop and bought a used copy of the Wii Fit Plus.  I started doing either exercise routines for 30 mins everyday, then I moved to the yoga and did that for 30 days.  I admit, that I didn’t keep the exercising up and that I really should, life sort of got in the way, so I was only doing body tests.   I am still watching what I eat, I still eat junk food, but I don’t let myself eat it like I was eating it, I have been eating it in smaller amounts.   I have never quite understood the BMI(Body Mass Index), but for my height it said I should be about 124lbs, I had figured 120-125 would be a good weight, as I doubted that I could get down to 115lbs.   I won’t say that it was easy or that I didn’t get discouraged, because I did.  But it is worth it!!!!!  I can walk up my driveway with out sounding or feeling like I couldn’t breath,  I can’t run up the driveway without sounding that way.  Granted, my driveway while not long is at enough of a grade that it doesn’t help much, I would say the grade is at least 45 degrees.
I can mostly fit in my clothes, I still have a few that are tight and a few that I still can’t get buttoned without sucking in air.  I still need to do a lot of muscle toning, but on a whole I feel much better about where I am.   Today when I stepped on the Wii Board to do my body test( I can never get smack dab in the middle) I weighed 125.4 and had 1.1lbs to loses to reach my goal of 124 lbs.   Now I am going to get to see how much of a struggle, that I am going to have to maintain that weight.  While I am still told that I didn’t look like I had almost 20lbs of weight to lose, I could tell and sometimes that is all that is important, is what we know and how we feel about our body’s.  Will I ever be Supermodel thin?  NO! And I wouldn’t want to be that thin either.  We all have an optimum weight that we should be at, that helps are bodies to heal and stay healthy at.  Finding that optimum weight and feeling good about being at that weight is what I was striving for and I think I am just about there.

I haven’t really changed my cooking style any, I still cook from scratch as much as possible, but I will buy processed food items.  I do not read the labels at all, to me it’s a waste of time.  I am not on the NO High Fructose Corn Syrup hype, I feel that if you eat healthy enough that a little of that will not hurt you.  As with anything, even good for you items, too much can be bad for you.  Moderation in all thing’s, is so far how I have lost 16.5lbs.

Hive Beetles

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Posted by kat | Posted in Our Bees | Posted on 03-09-2012

Saturday, I went and checked on my hive,  while I check them daily, the hive hasn’t been opened since April when I transferred the bees into it.   I noticed a little black beetle on the outside of the hive, so I took a picture and then searched on google to see what it was.    It ended up being a hive beetle, and my hive ended up being fairly full of the larvae of the hive beetle.    So I did some research and there are several things you can try and do to battle these pests.  Hive beetle larvae love the pollen and honey, so as they burrow through the wax, they leave behind stuff that causes the honey to ferment and the bee’s will abandon that frame of honey.  If your infected in high enough numbers, you can lose several frames of honey.  Then you have to winter feed your bee’s, which can be a pain for you and can sometimes cause you to have syrup instead of real honey.  If they weaken your hive enough, you can also leave them open to getting wax moth’s which can further damage your colony of bees.   Your hive being in full sun is supposed to help keep them at bay, as the beetles do not like light.

1)  My hive was  in partial sun, so I moved it to a full sun location.   I had to wait until after sunset when all the bee’s are supposed to be in the hive, you then trap them temporarily inside, then after a day or two you remove what ever was keeping them inside and they are now readjusted to the fact they have been moved.

2) Take out any infected frames and put in clean frames.
I added four new frames that had never been used.  I will clean the other frames and then use them later if needed.

3) Requeen the hive and add some brood.
I am not going to try this one yet, as I am not sure that my queen is dead, but I know I lost some brood.

4) Squash any and all beetles you find when you open the hive or that are crawling on the hive.
I have been doing this the few times I have opened the hive, since finding the beetles.  I also have been squashing any of the larvae I have been able to get to.

5) Put in roach station bait traps
You can also make your own version of these, or there are several different traps out there that you can buy.  I tried a mouse sticky trap and it was loaded and it was only in there overnight.  I thought it would only let the beetles in, but I found a few live bees in there as well.  So I need to find a way to make the hole smaller.

For now I am going to try the moving to a full sun location and then we will go from there.   If all else fails and I loose the whole hive, I will see if I can buy a queen and some brood and try again.  I also might be able to see if someone has a hive ready to swarm and then see if they are willing to let me have the swarm to add to the hive once I have the issues fixed.    I should know in about 6 weeks if I need to find a new queen or not.

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