The Simple Life Series // Homemade Laundry Detergent

Making your own laundry detergent is super easy and inexpensive. After years of spending around $20 a month on my Tide with Febreeze detergent (which I love!!), I decided that in the interest of saving money, I would switch to making my own. I had some people express their concern that using a homemade detergent would void my warranty, but my washing machine wasn’t new enough to have a warranty, so that didn’t really matter to me. Also, I make a powder detergent, even though I have a front loading washing machine, and I haven’t experienced any problems with it. As far as the recipe goes, I prefer to make a large batch that will last a long time as opposed to making smaller batches throughout the year, I guess I’m just lazy and I don’t want to have to worry about it… But if you would prefer to start with a smaller batch there are recipes all over Pinterest.

Homemade Laundry Detergent Recipe:

4 pound box of Baking Soda

4 pound box of Borax

4 pound box of Super Washing Soda (I could only find a 3 pound box of the Super Washing Soda, so I bought 2 and measured out the extra pound. I found it in the laundry section at the grocery store)

1.5 pounds of Oxi-Clean

3 Bars of Fels-Naptha or Zote soap (I found this at Fry’s, in the laundry section, on the top shelf, so it took a bit of searching, so don’t give up)

1 container of Freshening Crystals in your choice of scent (Purex, Gain, Downy)

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 Directions:

Start out by grating the bars of Fels-Naptha, I put wax paper underneath to make pouring it into the bowl easier.

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 Once that’s done, you just add all of the ingredients together and mix!

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 I used a bowl for the pictures, but I think the easiest method is to put everything in a garbage bag (Tip: Double bag!!! This stuff gets heavy!!!), then close the top and move it around to mix all of the ingredients thoroughly.

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I’ve been storing my “in-use” detergent in an air tight container I got at Target and leaving all of the left over in the garbage bag I used to mix it in with the top tied off, then just refill when needed.

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Once I redo my laundry room I plan to have a “prettier” system worked out, but this is working for now. It only takes 1-2 tablespoons of detergent, depending on your load size (I keep a tablespoon measuring spoon in the container for easy measuring). And that is all there is to it. For less than $20 and about 20 minutes of time, you can have an entire year’s worth of laundry detergent!!

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Brynlee’s Transition to her Crib

Brynlee has officially slept in her crib for 3 weeks! Ever since I went back to work and it has gone far better than I thought it would!!! During my maternity leave, I would frequently put Brynlee in her crib for naps, just to get her used to sleeping in it, so that when we finally transitioned her to it full-time it wouldn’t be so traumatic. From the first time I put her in her crib she loved it, she likes to stretch out, which is something that she couldn’t really do in her bassinet, so whenever we would put her in there she would stretch and wiggle around and be perfectly content. We decided to move Brynlee to her room when I went back to work for 2 reasons, 1) we have our ceiling fan on in our room and noticed that Brynlee was getting a stuffy nose. We tried turning our fan off and that really helped her nose, but it made our room too hot to sleep comfortably. And 2) we thought that getting ready in the morning would be too loud for her to continue sleeping and we wanted her to sleep until we had to get her up and ready because getting ready while she is awake can sometimes be challenging… That baby does not like to be ignored! 😀 Plus, we have a sound monitor and an awesome video monitor that has great night vision and syncs up to our iPad and iPhones, so while I worried pretty much the entire first night she was up there, I was able to trust that I would hear her if she started fussing after that.

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*picture of the video feed to my iPad

And, if I randomly wake up in the middle of the night I can easily see that she is just fine on the video monitor so as I am getting used to the change and I worry a lot less. As for Brynlee, if anything, she sleeps better now! I think it’s because it’s so quiet in her room and we are not in there making noise and waking her up. I really thought it would be more difficult than it has been to transition her to her crib. I’m glad we had her take naps in there because I really think it helped her be comfortable in it from the beginning. I know some parents that have had a really difficult time with this transition, so I am grateful that, so far, things have gone smoothly and I hope that they continue to do so.

The Simple Life

A couple of weeks ago I met up with one of my friends for lunch and a shopping date. Her and her boyfriend are currently in the process of building a house, in the meantime, the house they were living in sold and instead of shelling out excess money on a rental, they, with their 2 dogs, decided to live in their Fifth Wheel Travel Trailer for the remainder of the build. Of course I was asking her all about how that was going, I can’t imagine living out of a space that small, especially now with Brynlee. However, she said that it was actually quite freeing! They had moved their over 2000 square foot house entirely into either the travel trailer or a storage unit, which is sizably smaller than their old house. As a result, they had to get rid of pretty much anything and everything that they didn’t absolutely need. Then they had to decide on what was needed for them to live on a day to day basis to keep in the trailer. I kept commenting on how I had no idea how they were doing it, but she explained that living without excess made your life much simpler. You use what you have and beyond that you don’t have a choice. It’s easy to keep your space clutter free and has made them much happier! Then there is me, I am a self-proclaimed collector, my husband calls it hoarding…  But there are just certain things that I love having. For instance, I love to entertain, so I have ton of serving ware, platters, pitchers, bowls, trays and even though I have plenty of items to have a dinner party every time I go to Target or Home Goods or any other home store I find that I have to restrain myself from buying more. Then they are the random things that just collect in our home that I don’t even realize. I recently cleaned out a closet and found 12 flower vases in there!!! I couldn’t believe it, if you would have asked me previously how many vases I had I would have said 2 maybe 3, but I guess it’s true, out of sight out of mind. Anyway, back to the topic at hand, having that conversation with my friend really inspired me to de-clutter my home, thereby, de-cluttering my life. The first step, cleaning out that closet with all those vases I didn’t know I had, I mean, if I don’t even know that I have something, do I really need it??? I think not… So that closet lead to cleaning out another closet which lead to having a lot of trash and a big pile to take to Goodwill. Already I feel happier about it and now when I open those closet doors I no longer cringe, plus by donating items to Goodwill it feels good to know that the items I no longer use (or never used) will find a new home and hopefully be put to good use (that was always my excuse before, I felt bad about just throwing something that was perfectly fine away). So, my husband loaded up the car and off to Goodwill we went! And Goodwill makes it so easy to donate, we just pulled up to the Goodwill Drop off:

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And we were greeted by a very friendly Goodwill employee who happily helped us empty our car:

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And off we went, it took less than 10 minutes, so I really have no more excuses! I still have a lot more to go through and get rid of, but just by seeing what a difference just cleaning those 2 closets has made, its keeping me motivated to continue through the rest of my house and see what else I have that I don’t even know about…