I have been puttering in the kitchen. Not baking, unfortunately. A non-functioning stove has made that impossible and the lack of baked goods in the house has become noticeable. So no cookies. But I have been mixing up some concoctions. I guess it all began about 10 years ago when I thought it would be fun to make my own lip balm. It was. A lot of fun. I then moved onto facial scrubs and masks. Still fun but the experimentation stopped there. As much as I was intrigued by the idea of making my own lotions and soap, I was intimidated by the ingredient lists. And lye. For some reason, lye scared the, well, it scared me. Along came full-time employment, then children and I didn't have quite so much time to play in the kitchen.
Fast forward to about 2 months ago. Having not used regular commercial brand deodorants in about 10 years, I decided to try making my own. And it works. It's actually really good. And yes, I know that by declaring this, I am declaring my hippy-dippiness but as my parents and husband will tell you, I've never been afraid to embrace my hippy-dippiness. Following on the footsteps of the deodorant, I made an oatmeal facial cleanser.
Now here comes the big leap. My oldest son has always had dry skin. So dry that he scratches it raw. This winter seems to have been particularly harsh on his skin. This past weekend, I whipped up a batch of lanolin lotion.
It's thick, smooth and creamy. Very moisturizing. And perhaps best of all? The boys will actually use it.
So I've made lotion. Can I make soap? Heck yes, I can. Encouraged by Renee's awesome video tutorial, I gathered my supplies a couple of weeks ago, waiting for the opportune afternoon. Monday afternoon arrived. Weighing out the lye on my scale, I was taken back to life B.C. (before children) when I studied chemistry and biology at university and then worked in an aquatic toxicology lab. The end result of a couple of hours of puttering?
28 bars of olive oil soap. No scent this time because I wanted to keep my financial investment to a minimum until i knew I could do this soap making thing. I do predict scented soap in my future. And the lye thing? Not such a big deal. I kept the back door opened during the process. It was cold and a few snowflakes may have come in but a small price to pay for handmade soap. Perhaps I shouldn't have told Mike I had the kitchen door open. He gets a little fidgety at the thought of open doors and windows when the furnace is running. I have to remember to keep him in a blissfully ignorant state.
Now I just have to wait 4 weeks while the soap cures. It's going to be a long wait. During that time, I'll be planning my next round of kitchen puttering.