Saturday, March 30, 2013

Homemade Laundry Detergent

Last November we were running out of laundry detergent and I had seen on Pinterest a DIY Laundry Detergent recipe.  We already use the powder version of Tide detergent which is cheaper than the liquid and this is supposedly cheaper and better than name brand so I thought I would give it a go. 

I found everything I needed at Wal-Mart which included Washing Soda ($3.24), Baking Soda ($2.12), Borax ($3.38), OxyClean ($7.52), Fels Naptha soap (2x $0.97), Purex fabric softener crystals ($4.76) and a new Rubbermaid container ($3.97) to mix it all in.  In total, this all cost me $26.93.

I followed the directions and I would say the most time consuming part was grating the soap.  I tried a cheese grater and also a lemon zester, and I found the lemon zester was a little easier, but still a pain.  I layered a little of each ingredient in the Rubbermaid and then mixed it as best I could. 

It says you only need about 1-2 tbsp per load, but I think we were using more than that.  She states that this would only cost you $28/year based on 6 loads of laundry per week.  I would say we do between 6-8 loads per week.  We used up the last of our homemade detergent this week, so it only lasted us 4 months, not 12 like she states.  That means we must be using closer to 3x the amount of detergent needed. 

While it did seem to wash our clothes just as well as the name brands, I think I’ll be going back to Tide, since it is more convenient and not much more expensive at our current rate of usage.  And besides, these companies spend lots of money on perfecting their product.  If this was a more “green” laundry detergent then I might consider using it again, but with the ingredients listed, I don’t think that it is. 

Saturday, March 23, 2013

MOMmy & DADdy

Just this week Jacob has gone from calling us Mommy & Daddy to just Mom & Dad.  I’m not sure why the change happened and I’m also not sure I like it!  I guess our little guy is growing up…

Saturday, March 16, 2013

The long way

My manager and I were recently in the Boston area to do some research and finish out a trial from which we recorded over 2,000 numbers.  We finished early and made it to the airport with 3 hours to kill before our flight, so I decided to start averaging the numbers to see how the results turned out. 

I always keep my TI-30x calculator handy while traveling so I started crunching the numbers.  I was able to get a third of them calculated before the flight and even made a hand-drawn graph to show my manager the results.  I did have my laptop with me, but it would have taken me longer to try and input all the numbers without a number pad. 

We then boarded the plane and while everyone was finding their seats and the flight attendants were showing everyone what to do in case of an emergency I pulled out my calculator to keep going.  But then came the announcement of turning off all electronic devices.  I was not sure if my calculator was included, but it is an electronic device and I didn’t want to be THAT person on the plane.

I still really wanted to keep averaging, so I decided to start doing it with my pencil and paper.  The adding was easy enough, but then came the long division.  I tried to think how many years it had been since I had to do long division and then I realized it had been decades!  Oh boy, this might take a while. 

But actually it was quite easy and I remembered what I was doing fairly quickly.  It was just like riding a bicycle.  Once the electronic devices were allowed to be turned back on I did pull out my calculator and check my math.  I would say that I was about 75% correct.  I erased my math after each set, so I wasn’t sure if the wrong ones were off because of the adding or division.

I guess I’m all set for when Jake brings home his math homework in a few years.  Jamie and I were both able to pick up math very easily, so I really hope Jake will too. 

Monday, March 4, 2013

Bridal Shower Cookbook

For my co-worker's bridal shower we asked for a recipe from each of the guests.  My plan was to make a scrapbook out of them and give it to her as a gift.  In the end though I decided that would be too much work, so I made a cookbook using a photobook on

It took me a while to understand the layouts and how to make my own, but after a few hours it was complete.  I think it turned out great! 

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