You know the whole parenting frustration where you spend all this money on great toys and the kids just play with the box? I think there was a post a while back floating around the net that gave the top 10 toys for kids and it was like a cardboard box, pieces of wood, a rope etc. Simple things.
Our house is in a constant state of remodeling. My husband has stuff lying all around the house for all sorts of projects. I admit that most of the time it drives me nuts and I want to chuck it all, yesterday was one of those days I was glad for it.
Introducing the world’s most famous toys: the tube and the stair tread remnant
We have a million of these cardboard tubes lying around 1. because my husband works for an engineering firm and he brings all of them home from work and 2. he is planning on entering a cardboard boat race and is in it to win it this year. The stair tread remnant is from the finally accomplished stairs into our basement (We are like 2 steps from being done with remodeling our basement…yippee!!).
The kids and I were outside yesterday and I realized these would make amazing balance boards. I wondered if the tubes were strong enough to withstand the weight of the kids and even me and they were! We had a blast playing around with our balance and found out that it works much better on the grass versus the driveway (I nearly had a major bust when the tube started rolling under me…can anyone say “lumberjack racing”?)
Then my son, being the boy he is, decided to make it into a catapult and starting launching things off of it.
So, when you start to get board this summer (no pun intended) just take a look at all the junk lying around your garage or carport and you never know what you might find!
There are lots of things I choose to do for our family that are homemade and hopefully healthy. I won’t buy Little Debbie cakes (which makes my husband oh so sad) and kool-aid (gasp!). I pretty consistently make bread every week for us (yum!). That said, I’ve never been excited about jumping on the soap making wagon. I longingly look at recipes for homemade dishwasher detergent and laundry soap, but I’ve never been able to justify the time and expense of gathering all the materials when I can just buy some detergent at the store (or actually lately I’ve been buying it off a friend who buys it by the caseload).
But, when this recipe for handsoap crossed Pinterest, I thought “this could be a good starting point.”
I gathered up all the materials: glycerin (from the bandaid aisle at Walmart for $3.50), a bar of Vermont soap (from our local food co-op for $3.50) and water (from my kitchen sink).
I kind of combined the two recipes/procedures I had pinned. One from The Farmer’s Nest and another from The Rasmussens.
I honestly don’t know how many ounces the soap bar was. It was a typical handmade soap size. Probably about the same size as a bar of Dove. I ended up using 2 Tbsp of glycerin and 10 cups of water. When I was done, it was pretty watery. I let it sit all day and overnight. This morning it was pretty thick, but not snotty, like I had read so many reviews. I decided to beat it a little with the electric mixer and it thickened up a little more, but still wasn’t very snotty. It’s kind of the consistency of soap when you mix some water in the bottom of the bottle to get the last of it out. Maybe a little thicker. I have read too that it will continue to thicken up as it sits.
Here are my results. I filled up 2 soap dispensers and 3 jars. Not bad, but this first round I wouldn’t say it saved me any money. If I keep going at it, all I’ll have to buy is the bar of soap and that will make it all worth it.
Does it work? When I washed my hands with it, it did suds up, smelled great and left my hands feeling oh so soft. We’ll see what the family thinks when they come home and start using it!