Sunday, February 27, 2011


I haven't written much here lately. I also write on my other blog, and that's where my focus has been. The two are really kind of meshed together though.

I wanted to update on a few things though. First off, the laundry soap is going well. I found out that two table spoons is the same as 1/8 of a cup - and I had that measuring cup so it made dishing out the soap much easier! I still have plenty of it, despite doing alot of laundry.

Oh - I've been networking with a few friends from my church and I've found a local CSA or Community Supported Agriculture! For 22 weeks this growing season I will get a half bushel(or so) of organic produce fresh from the farm!!! I am SOOOOO Excited!!! I haven't heard or seen about any in the area... I don't know many people (locally) who are as picky and health conscious of their food's quality. So when a friend and I started talking, she had heard of one. That particular one, located in Ohio - but delivering to PA - wasn't right for us. It wasn't organic and it looked like we might be getting a fair amount of produce we wouldn't normally utilize. And possibly too much. So this new one is a bit smaller - not as great a variety - but organic and local. There's also a mandatory workday - which I'm really excited about! The kids get to come and help and see where their food is grown. I do plan on planting some of my own produce as well though. I can't wait for spring and summer. Winter has gone on a long time and I'm very much looking forward to getting in the dirt!(and heat!)

I'm still cooking organically. I have some repeat and new recipes I'm cooking up this week. I'll try to take pictures and post them - especially the repeat recipes, since their obviously good ones!!

I'm also getting together soon with my friend I *networked* with - so we can talk more about food and what we do and don't do. I'm hoping to get some good ideas for gardening this year and maybe some shopping tips. Our area, although I live in a city - is still behind on things. So organic and clean/green living is really just starting to emerge in this area. Or so it seems to me!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Laundry Soap

So I finally took the plunge!!! I made my own laundry soap!!!

It's not terribly hard, you just have to gather the right ingredients - and that can sometimes be a chore until you know where to go. I made a powdered soap using 1 Cup Borax and 1 Cup Arm & Hammer Washing Soda and 1 bar shredded Fels-Naptha. I shredded it by hand, but you could also use a food processor - which I think would be much easier!!!! The soap is kinda hard!!!

The Ingredients!

The Work!

The Final Product!!!

It smells like soap. Nothing fancy or flowery. Just like a bar of soap. Some people use Ivory soap - I may try that in the future. I looked at the ingredients of the Fels-Naptha and all it says: Cleaners, soil & stain removers, chelating agents, colorants, perfume. Hmmm... I guess there aren't strict regulations for ingredient labels on cleaning agents! Thanks for all that information!(sarcasm... )

I haven't used the soap yet - but I'm sure I'll get to it tomorrow. You use 2 Tbs at a time. I'll be interested to see how long it lasts me. I suppose I should make a double batch, but my arm was getting tired from the shredding.

Another thing that occurred to me - and I never see it mentioned on other blogs talking about laundry soap - but I'm assuming I need to use this on a warm cycle to help melt the shredded soap. I normally use cold water- because I hear it doesn't make that much of a difference. I will try both and let you know if the cold water won't work. I'm excited to try out my new soap!!!!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

I should be doing laundry...

One of the wholesome living *rules*is that you try to limit the toxins in and around your home. I don't know where the rule book is, but if you surf the internet long enough you come across this *rule.* Another thing you come across quite a bit is homemade laundry detergent.

The first time I heard of this was from a friend a few years ago. It just knocked my socks off that she made her own detergent. And if you've been wise to this - you know it's not very hard. She makes a liquid soap and swears it cleans just as well - if not better than any other detergent. At the time I couldn't conceive of making detergent.. well I could make it once, but I would likely run out and have to wait a whole week before buying more at the store. I wouldn't keep up with it. I'm lazy by nature.

Anyways, I'm not sure why she does it. I assume it's because it's way cheaper and she likes how her clothes smell - not because it's greener or has less contact with toxins in her family. And since then, I've heard of a few other people who make their own detergent. And now it's all over the internet - especially the blog world.

So I'm going to give it a try. I was especially curious when I found a few recipes for powdered detergent. That sounds much more my style. I don't know that I'm going to replicate a liquid recipe more than once. If it's too much work - I just won't do it again.

So, now I just need to get all the ingredients. I've been contemplating this for a while and I'm almost out of my detergent, so now's the time. I'll let you know how it goes!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


There's so much that could be said. I've been putting off writing anything for this blog - because it just doesn't seem monumental enough to write about. For the first post on this blog - I feel that it needs to be vital information and have a fair amount of substance. But I don't really feel qualified nor do I have anything interesting or particular to write about with our wholesome living. So I thought I'd write about some of our firsts - since this is the first real posting on this blog.

The first time I went shopping for real food. . .
I spent alot of money. I didn't have a list, I didn't have a plan. It was more exploratory really. I went to our local Whole Foods Co-op. I bought some produce, but not much. I roamed the aisles and gawked at the price of dairy and meats. I just stared at the petrified frozen bread... then I went to Wegmans.

I knew they had a large "natural" section. So I checked it out. They do have a large section - but it's for many special dietary needs. So I found myself trying to decipher between organic, gluten free and vegan. It was all so specialty- I still had to search for the real foods!!! Needless to say - it took alot of experimentation to find out what would work for our family. Some foods were easy switches - others we had to find new alternatives. Frankly, some things we probably won't ever change. There are just certain snacks or condements that my family prefers and despite searching for an alternative - there is nothing better than the processed original. I know this is taboo to those in the stricter frame fo mind, but this is how we're flexible and I like being flexible. I don't know that we're quite where I'd like us to be - but we've made alot of good changes and I hopefully we'll continue to do more.

I must say - it took a bit of effort to rethink our perception of food. Especially since I was coming off of Weight Watchers too.. all of a sudden, diet food was a HUGE scam and I'd never realized it. I didn't realize it at first. I was reading Jillian Michael's Master Your Metabolism book - and she was pointing out the same thing - but with a protein bar. I was shocked. I thought protein bars were the ultimate picture of "healthy fuel" for your body especially with a workout at hand. I think this was the first time I realized our boxed world of convenience was about to be tossed away. It's realizations like this that helped change our diet over time. Where we're at today has been a process. You don't just go to the store and totally change you're whole pantry and menu.

Well - that's how we first started to change - there's more I could say - but this is getting long and drawn out.