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Houston, we have... - Random babblings of a fiber-obsessed nutcase

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Previous Entry Houston, we have... Apr. 13th, 2010 @ 08:33 am Next Entry
achieved soap!




I got home last night, checked it - it was hard - then dumped it out on the table. (OK, I didn't *dump* it, but the word fits. :lol:) I did the "zap" test - I took a small piece of soap off of the cling wrap, and touched my tongue to it. No zap, so - we have Soap! (The writing? Transferred from the garbage bag lining the mold. Next time I'll make sure there's no writing where the soap will be!)




I cut it with my dough cutter-thingy, then stacked it on pieces of wax paper. It was a bit oily feeling last night; this AM it felt like, well - soap. :grin: Sweet Geek gets to cut it next time - I suck at eyeballing stuff. So, this batch consists of a bunch of thin, long soap bars. Oh, well.....:lol:

It suds up really well, and smells nice. :rubs hands with glee: (What? You didn't expect me to NOT try it out, did you? I couldn't resist - and I had all the skimmings off of the trash bag that needed something done with. So, I washed up! :lol:)

Next up: Coffee soap for Sweet Geek, Shampoo bars for all of us, more experimentation with the goats' milk (I want to make lighter-colored soap. I know I can't get white with 100% goats milk, but I can try to go lighter than *this* batch)......oh, the plans that I have! :lol:

Ali asked yesterday about curing......from what I remember from HS Chemistry, once the stuff hardens, there's no more chemical reaction going on; it's all saponified at that point, and safe to use (unless you didn't get the lye mixture blended correctly, but that's a whole 'nother problem. I over-stirred, I think, in an effort to make sure everything was blended as well as it could be.) Curing, then, simply lets the excess liquids evaporate - which makes the bars harder. So...yes, you want to cure it so that the size is stable and the soap is as hard as it can get, and no, you don't have to cure if you need soap right away. (IF I were selling soap, I would let it cure, just to be sure it was nice and hard. For home use though - soon as I run out of my current soap, I'm using this. :grin:)

ghislainedel made a good point - she said she always keeps an open bottle of vinegar handy when she makes soap - vinegar neutralizes the lye mixture. I had it nearby, but not open......my next batch, I will have gloves AND open vinegar. What with the ammonia smell, the vinegar won't even be noticed. :grin:

I know it's gardening time...but I haven't been able to buy seeds. :sigh: I think it's because I do NOT have time to tend a garden right now - the goats are keeping me busy. If I wasn't working.....but right now I am, and I am grateful for my job, so....no garden for us this year. Gardens need 7-day a week tending - I have time on the weekends, but not on the weekdays.

We lost a chicken yesterday - not sure why. I need to get a few more pullets....and I'm looking into medications. We've been doing things "naturally", but....this makes 6 chickens we've lost since we started (which, granted, isn't bad, but that's too many according to Herself), and I think it's time to join the modern world. I need to get some more goat stuff anyways (a tattoo kit for 1, and a broad-spectrum wormer to use in rotation with the Ivermectin), so I might as well add chicken stuff to it. Even if it's.....worthless, at least I'll feel like I've done *something*. :sigh: (We don't even TALK about eating these layers - Herself gets all wound up. The mere mention of sending Jayne to Freezer Camp had both kids in tears...which is why we're going to see if he improves the Cashmere's udders. :sigh: Can't keep 'em all, gang!)

I need to go price oils......I have lots of soap to make! (Hey, when SHTF and civilization collapses, MY family will be clean and well-dressed. :lol: Might smell like coffee...but at least they'll be *clean*. Strong bones, too, thanks to the goats! :lol:)
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From:(Anonymous)
Date:April 13th, 2010 02:00 pm (UTC)
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Ah that is great - you made it look so easy - now *I* want to try to make soap. Would you share the recipe? or the link where you found it?

The thing with eating the goats - you can't eat your first goats...but once you know what you want and you have it - you can say - while the momma is pregnant - okay kids all girls out of this litter are going to be sold and the boys are going to be dinner. Or we are keeping the girls and the boys will be dinner. And as soon as you see you have a freezer bound boy - name him something food related. Our rule is that if a boy doen't sell as a pet in 4 months - he becomes food. My kid is 9 - we started doing our own chickens when he was 3. He doesn't help process, he doesn't want to be around when the animals are killed - he is fine about eating them afterwards though.
~ali
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From:fiberaddict
Date:April 13th, 2010 02:25 pm (UTC)
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Yeah, we gave up on eating these goats. They have a home here pretty much forever (well...maybe not Jayne. We're gonna see what sort of improvement he gives to the Cashmeres.)...but we can NOT keep all of 'em. We need 20 for the exemption.....but I am NOT going to milk 20 goats every day. :lol: I want 1 more PB Nubian doe for the milk; the Cashmeres can be fiber/meat. :nods:

This year was "Firefly" for names - the suggestion was made to name all freezer-bound ones "Reaver". :snicker: *I* suggested "Fajita", "Cabrito", etc.....we'll see. Herself said she's not against raising broiler chickens, as long as she doesn't know who she's eating. Goats, though...they're so personable that it'll be harder.
From:(Anonymous)
Date:April 14th, 2010 03:22 pm (UTC)
(Link)
when we had extra boys and had to send them to freezer camp we made sure we processed two at a time for that very reason - you don't know who you are eating - My sister wouldn't help with the processing until they were missing the head and skin - then she couldn't tell who was who.
Chickens *are* easier - more anonymous. With any meat animal it is easier if they are all the same color. We are still trying to decide if we will do the boers ourselves or send them in to be done.
~ali
From:(Anonymous)
Date:April 14th, 2010 12:44 pm (UTC)

Soap

(Link)
I wonder... what is the cost effectiveness of this? Have you done a run-down on it? I just... well, people say to replace shampoo with baking soda and apple cider vinegar, and there IS no cost effectiveness in that - it doesn't even do as good a job - I can get baby shampoo for 99 cents for a 15 oz bottle. Just as an example.

So how does this compare to, say, a 12-pack of Ivory soap? When you factor in all the ingredients?
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From:fiberaddict
Date:April 14th, 2010 12:56 pm (UTC)

Re: Soap

(Link)
I'm not sure. Lye was $3.99/lb, and I used about half, so call it $2; oil.....that's a hard one. Let's see: Coconut Oil $5.28/2 pounds (I think), Vegetable Oil $2.34/3 pounds, Olive Oil $4.98/25 oz. (The pounds are estimates - I honestly don't know, and I can't read my photo. :lol:)

I used about half of one bottle of lye ($2), the full bottle of Olive Oil ($4.98), about half of the coconut oil (maybe a third?)($2.64 for half), and about half of the veggie oil ($1.17). So.... for the oils and lye it was $10.79. I can't calculate the milk - I'm swimming in it! - but if I use storebought as an example, it would be about $2 or so (because you only need a little over a pound, which is about a pint).

So...call it approx. $13 for a 5 pound batch. I've priced oils, and can get them cheaper than at Wallyworld if I go bigger (found a place local that I can get almost wholesale prices on them), which would lower the costs......

What does Ivory soap go for right now? $2/bar? If so, you'd come out cheaper making it - UNLESS you factor in your time, and the pro-rated costs of the equipment (stick blender/dedicated pitcher/bowl/spoon/thermometers/molds).

My deal is that I have more milk than I have fridge space to store it right now (with only 2.5 goats online! :blink:) I don't want to waste the milk - so, soap and cheese and icecream it is! (But there's only so much space for cheese and icecream....soap is easier to store.)

Plus, I know what's in this, and I can pronounce every ingredient. :lol: I haven't bought soap in years - I've been doing melt-n-pour soaps for at least 4 years, because Himself is allergic to something in most commercial soaps. :sigh: I'd rather make my own than pay shipping.....

Oh! Shampoo bars last LONGER than bottled shampoo, and - for my hair - do a better job. I haven't needed to use vinegar as a rinse; some people do, my hair is fine without it. I know my Lush bars last at least 3 months (and they're small!)....so....And again, if I make my own, I know what's in it. I'm looking at oils that have conditioning properties to make my own now. We'll see how it works....

Edited at 2010-04-14 12:58 pm (UTC)
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