Tuesday, March 29, 2011


How to make natural laundry soap.

I like to make stuff. All kinds of stuff. From laundry detergent to body scrubs to shirts for my boys..the list goes on and on and I love to learn how to make new stuff! From time to time, I'll post how and what I am currently creating! Today I wanted to share how I make my own laundry detergent. I have been making my own detergent for years now and it works great, even in my HE front load! It's a very common and simple recipe. Easy to make and easy to use! Making your own laundry detergent is not only less expensive, but it is without the multiple chemicals added to most name brands so it's better for the environment and gentler on our skin. I prefer to make dry vs liquid detergent because it's so much easier! Here's what you need:

Dragonflies and Stars DIY Laundry Detergent

6 cups Borax

4 cups Baking Soda

4 cups Washing Soda

3 bars Fels-Naptha, all natural soap, grated

Mix all ingredients and store in a sealed container

Use 1/8 cup of powder per full load.

I like to keep mine in a pretty jar, because even the laundry room can be beautiful! You can find these jars at any craft store. Add a handmade tag and you've got a beautiful display of practical and environmentally friendly homemade laundry soap!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

My Java Crush

Why I choose Organic Coffee.
I drink coffee. More like I have a love affair with coffee. I'm a junkie. An aficionado. A connoisseur. An addict. And any other phrases to describe the lust and addiction I have for my daily cup of joe. Or let's be real...cup(s) of joe as one cup does not fulfill my desire. I never drank coffee before I had kids. As a sleep deprived new mom, I used it as a stimulant to simply keep my eyes open because I thought it preferable to my baby and society that his caregiver be "awake". From necessity, adoration and addiction was born. Nowadays, the caffeine content I used to rely upon for basic daily functioning has no effect. I drink for the pure pleasure. I start the coffeemaker first thing in the morning and as I am showering I think about that first delicious sip. Just the thought motivates me to get moving. As I've learned more about coffee, I've become more particular about which coffee I drink. Coffee is typically grown with the use of more pesticides than any other crop. Most coffee is grown in countries that have NO regulations regarding pesticides. Even as lenient as the US is, there are still plenty of pesticides that are banned here, but are still being used on the coffee we purchase! Coffee farmers are often the most exploited as well. This information takes the satisfaction away from my daily pleasure. Is it too much to want to enjoy my coffee without contributing to unfair labor practices and ingesting toxic chemicals? Come on people, let's look for a solution. An easy solution too. Get organic coffee and make sure the label is fair-trade certified, take it one step further and make sure it's shade grown and carbon-free and feel good about every drip. You can find these coffees at almost all grocery stores now or try www.highergroundroasters.com and www.groundsforchange.com, great but pricier. Publix is my local store and they have a great Greenwise coffee that is organic and fair trade certified. I like a little sweetness to my cup, so I add Sweetleaf stevia . Stevia is an all natural sweetener and it comes it great convenient packets that you can take on the go too! You can also get it in a liquid dropper and in all kinds of flavors! Sweetleaf stevia isn't over-processed like most sugar and doesn't contain chemicals like artificial sweeteners (pink, blue and yellow packets!) It is derived from the Stevia plant and is low in calories too! It's also sweeter than sugar so you use less! Now that's sweet! Organic Coffee - Organic coffee is grown without the use of chemical pesticides and fertilizers, thereby assuring the health of the soil, forest and farmers. Certified Fair Trade Coffee - Fair trade coffee gives farmers a better standard of living and producer cooperatives are guaranteed a minimum fair price for their crop. Shade Grown Coffee - Shade grown coffee protects migratory bird habitats, reduces clear-cutting in tropical rainforests, promotes biodiversity and enhances flavor. CarbonFree® Certified Coffee - To get a product certified CarbonFree®, a company must submit the item for a detailed Life Cycle Analysis, a third-party process that formally scrutinizes the carbon emissions associated with every step in production. The resulting analysis accounts for and offsets all carbon dioxide emissions, in our case, starting with a coffee plant and ending with an empty bag of coffee.