Category Archives: Home
I’ve had a lot of questions about my homemade laundry detergent. How it works, how to make it, how much it costs, all that good stuff! So I thought I would share my recipe with you guys so that you can make it at home too!
First off, I won’t call it my own, because I found the original recipe on http://beingcreativetokeepmysanity.blogspot.com. She has wonderful instructions and it seemed like a good idea to try it out and see if it worked! Well our first batch lasted us over a year and cost us a mere $20! Let’s just say that my husband was thrilled. Thrilled enough that he wanted to make another batch when the first was gone. So we still use it and still loving it!
Here’s a glimpse of the goods:
Homemade Laundry Detergent Recipe
What you will need:
- 1 large box of Borax (78 oz or 4 lbs)
- 1 large box of Arm & Hammer Baking Soda (78 oz or 4 lbs)
- 1 large box of Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda (55 oz)
- 3 bars of Fels Naptha (found in laundry aisle) or really any laundry bar soap
- 2 containers of Oxy Clean (or 3.5 lbs) you can also substitute the store brand for this
- Optional: laundry crystals (found in laundry soap aisle) for a stronger scent
I personally do not use laundry crystals in our soap, but she mentions it in her original recipe that you can use it if you’d like more of a scent to your soap. I would also think that you could add in essential oils like lavender or rose for a really nice smell. What we do is use a scented dryer bar that lasts us forever, and it leaves the clothes with a nice fresh, and subtle scent as well. Plus, you can usually find coupons for the dryer bars and that always helps
Directions for making the soap:
1. The whole process of making the soap is really pretty easy. You’re going to want to grab a big garbage bag (the thicker the better) and dump in all your ingredients except for the bars of Fels Naptha, or whichever laundry bar soap you chose.
2. Mix ingredients together. I use a wooden spoon for this, it seems to work well and it doesn’t tend to puncture the garbage bag as easy as a stick or something might.
3. Next, you have a choice. You can grate the soap with a cheese grater (or food processor) until it’s into fine little pieces. OR – you can go the no-grate route and save yourself some time (and knicks on your knuckles – trust me on this one…)
If you choose the no-grate route for your laundry detergent, here’s what you will do…
Place one of the bars of soap on a plate and place in the microwave and set the timer for 3 minutes. Keep an eye on your soap, because every microwave is different. When it expands into a large fluff, you can remove the plate (careful, it will be hot!) And place it on a large piece of wax paper. Repeat with the other bars of soap.
It will take about 20 minutes for the soap balls to be cool enough to peel apart. When you feel like they’re cool, use your hands to break it up over the rest of your laundry detergent mixture. I got this microwave method from BlueCricketDesign.net
4. Mix it all together and you are set to go! Use 1 tbsp for a small load, 2 tbsp for a large load. I kept the scoop from the Oxy Clean and use that for our detergent It works perfect! The scoop in there is 2 tbsp.
Let me know if you make this, and let me know what you think!
This contest has now ended! The winners for the 9 free subscriptions are as follows:
Thank you to everyone who entered!! If your name is listed here, please check your email! If we do not hear from you within 24 hours, we will have to choose another winner!
If you are a last minute gift shopper, you know that there is nothing worse than hitting the malls merely days before Christmas only to deal with crabby people, picked-over sales, and of course the total lack of anything really good.
The same can go with shopping online for Christmas right about now, because things will never ship to you in time to give them to your recipient. It’s a pain to try and find gifts at the last minute, but today I’m going to give you an AWESOME last minute gift idea that suits nearly any age bracket, and it’s not going to send you into debt either! Score!
So what is this great last minute gift idea? It’s a digital magazine subscription! They are the perfect last minute gift because you can buy it right online, and it is a gift that keeps on giving, every month! Magazine subscriptions are personal too, because you can choose the magazine based on their tastes, hobbies, interests, etc. Last year, I needed a little something extra to give my hubby for his birthday, I ended up giving him a year long subscription to Field & Stream and he absolutely loved it… and got to love it again every single month!
Zinio is Giving Away 9 Subscriptions!!
So today, our friends at Zinio are giving away NINE digital magazine subscriptions to nine lucky readers! These are the perfect gift for anyone with an e-reader, tablet, mobile device, computer, etc. Your friends and family can bring these magazines with them wherever they go, without being bulky and awkward. So perfect!!!
Here are just a few digital magazine subscriptions from Zinio that you could give a woman like myself:
- Green Ideas
- Food & Home
- Women’s Health
- Runner’s World
- O (Oprah)
- Family Circle
- Real Living
- Good Housekeeping
- US Weekly
- Marie Claire
And of course, they’ve got tons of magazines for men to choose from too. Some honorable mentions include:
- Motor Trend
- Car and Driver
- Consumer Reports
- Men’s Health
- Running Times
- ESPN Magazine
- Men’s Journal
- Field & Stream
- Outdoor Life
- Popular Mechanics
- National Geographic
Current Sale at Zinio
Before we go and give away the subscriptions, I just have to tell you that you can save big on Zinio’s website. They have 300 magazine titles that they have on sale today through 1/7/13 for 50% off! Shop here to get this deal!
AND – Better Homes & Gardens is also offering an awesome deal on some special holiday issues and are priced at 30% off! Shop before 12/31 and save on these neat issues that feature food gifts, party food and Christmas cookies! Shop Better Homes & Gardens issues here!
Zinio has thousands of the top magazines from around the world, available for access on any computer or mobile device. They allow you to purchase a single issue or a subscription of your favorite magazine instantly to read whenever or wherever you’d like! They also have an ‘Explore‘ section where you can read articles from magazines (even without a subscription) and share them with friends or family.
Enter to Win 1 of 9 Subscriptions!
So you want to win one of these digital magazine subscriptions!? Here’s how. As always, you must leave a separate comment for EACH task that you complete.
- Visit Zinio.com and leave a comment here with which magazine subscription you would choose.
- Follow @MNHousewives
This contest will end at Noon CST on Sunday, December 23rd! So check your inboxes and watch our Facebook page feed for our winner announcement!
Best of luck in entering!!
Disclosure: I was not paid for this post. I was provided a magazine subscription from Zinio to compensate for my time. All opinions stated here are my own.
As you guys know, I’m always wanting something. Well, kind of. It’s just that the winter holidays always bring so much good stuff to the surface. Warm fuzzy boots, comfy cozy sweaters, new technology, new home products, workout items; the list could go on and on. And actually, it will go on and on because this is my winter must-have holiday gift list and that’s what it’s supposed to do!
I thought I would share a few of my wish list highlights this year, because isn’t it always fun to see what everyone else is asking for? Maybe you’ll even find a few things to add to your list. In that case, you’re welcome. If not, then I’m sorry you feel that way
Alright, here we go!
1. Lululemon Groove Yoga Pant *Slim ($98.00)
I’m not sure if the *Slim part means anything, but I’m just taking that directly from the website so you guys know which ones I’m referring to here. Lululemon has been around for years, but I’ve never bought any of their clothes, mostly because they’re a titch on the spendy side. At any rate, I’ve tried them on and they are exquisite. They hold you in and are comfy at the same time. What more could you ask for in a yoga pant?
2. Magic Bullet Blender ($49.99)
This is one item that I actually bought on my black friday adventure. They had them for $29.00 at Walmart so I couldn’t resist! These are perfect for making fast and easy smoothies, ice cream malts, baby food even? They make it easy to get just the right serving for one person, plus you don’t have to pour out of a clunky old blender, then clean the whole kitchen because it blended itself everywhere.
I use mine to make healthy drinks (greek yogurt, whey protein, fruit, spinach, milk) and you’ve got yourself a wonderful little snack and very, very minimal clean up.
3. North Face Microvelour Glacier 1/4 Zip ($55.00)
These are not only uber-comfy but also very fashionable. I love North Face stuff, it’s high quality and always fits so nice.
The downside to North Face, is that it can be expensive, but as with anything else, you get what you pay for.
This Microvelour Glacier zip up comes in tons of colors; you name it, they have it! Aren’t they cute??
4. Apple Mini iPad ($329.00)
This just came out not too long ago, but I had to admit I am super impressed. We currently have the iPad 3 and it’s just kind of big and bulky. Don’t get me wrong, I am totally in love. I love Apple products and would never go back, but this one is truly the best yet.
It’s the perfect size to toss in your bag, but it’s obviously bigger than a cell phone so it’s not so hard on the eyes. And the usability is obviously easier than on a phone as well.
5. Essie Nail Polishes ($8.00+)
Okay, this is a great stocking stuffer that I have to share. Essie is a nail polish brand that offers beautiful colors, you’ve probably seen them all over Pinterest! I just love how ‘true’ their colors are. They’re so unique, but pretty. It’s hard to describe, but let’s just say that the woman in your life will not be disappointed when she receives one or ten of these little guys.
6. Apple TV ($99.00)
Okay, so I already have one of these but you need to have it on your list if you don’t! These are phenomenal and I absolutely love ours. Despite the name, it’s not actually a TV, it’s a little box that hooks up to your TV and acts as like a DVD player, and internet TV all in one. We use it to watch our shows on Netflix and Hulu Plus, but you can also use it to watch videos on Youtube as well, plus tons of other options. We even rented a movie off of iTunes the other day because the movie wasn’t even out on Redbox yet. It works off your wifi and is so easy to use. You have a little remote and that’s all you need – play captain from the couch and watch whatever you like, whenever you like!
Well I hope these little features helped you put together your Christmas list this year, and if not – then maybe it helped your husband with some ideas other than a new blender Either way, that’s what I’m here for! hehe
Yes, it’s true!!! Pottery Barn is one of the BEST stores for filling your home with the most adorable things… Minnesota is blessed with Pottery Barn Kids/Baby, Pottery Barn, and Now, the trio will be complete!
Pottery Barn Teen will be opening it’s first Minnesota store Wednesday, November 7th at The Galleria in Edina, MN!!!!!
But there’s more!!!! They are offering a special gift to the first 250 customers at their Grand Opening, with a chance to win a $250 Pottery Barn Gift Card!!!! Wholly moly! So Exciting!
So mark your calendars, Minnesota Mommas – And get your Christmas list ready!!!! See you at Pottery Barn Teen at The Galleria on Wednesday, November 7th! Doors open at 10:00am.
See more details in their Press Release
Halloween is quickly approaching – and I am so excited for this fun holiday!!! I love Fall and getting dressed up to parade around the streets at night just sounds like a great time! There is only one problem… Halloween costumes can be SO expensive, especially now that I have a little one. Not to mention, these budget-busting costumes are only worn for a several hours and then stored away until you get the chance to make it to Goodwill to donate them.
*Light in head goes on* Goodwill would be the perfect place to outfit my family for Halloween!!!! Um, brilliant! Since Halloween is only a couple weeks away, there was no time to spare – Off the Goodwill we went!!! Here are some tips to get the most Bang for your Buck…
1. Plan ahead of time: Do some research and find some ideas of what you and your family would like to be for Halloween. I did a quick Google search of DIY costumes. First for my little one, then for me (which I happen to be prego right now, so this needed a specific search), a girl teenager costume, and then for hubby. There are so many great ideas online!
2. Make a list: Be sure to make a list of several options for each person and everything you will need for your costume. This way, if you are unable to find a certain thing, you can quickly switch to a different costume idea (or have a plan B for costume parts!)
3. Let the hunt begin: I don’t know about you, but I love the thrill of the hunt! I love to hunt down everything I am looking for and get it for a great price. Goodwill is absolutely perfect for this!!! Lucky for us, we was able to find EVERYTHING we needed for our top costume choices for the entire family of four!
4. Assemble your costumes: Not sure if you all know this about me but I am so.not.crafty! This little fact contributed to my costume choices and I was able to choose costumes with minimal assembly required.
Some of you may be able to get a little more creative and have a great time with this step In that case, oh boy, the options you will have here!
This year’s Halloween costumes are…
LO #1 – Thing 1
- Red long sleeve t-shirt ($1.50 on Toddler Thursday)
- Red sweatpants ($1.50 on Toddler Thursday)
- Blue hairspray ($2.99…will use this for baby-bump/my Thing 2 costume)
- Cut-out from white t-shirt ($1.00…will use this same shirt for the other 2 costumes also!)
- Black Sharpie Marker ($0.00 – had this at home)
- Face paint ($3.99 – shared with hubby and me)
- Red long sleeve t-shirt ($2.99 – extra-large to fit my belly!)
- Black yoga pants ($5.99)
- Blue hairspray ($2.99 – shared with LO#1)
- Cut-out from white t-shirt ($1.00 – shared with LO#1 and hubby)
- Black Sharpie Marker ($0.00 – had this at home)
- Face paint ($3.99 – shared with LO#1 and hubby)
- Pink long sleeve shirt ($6.99 – bonus points for Juicy Couture, can wear again!)
- Pink skirt ($4.99)
- White gloves ($2.99)
- Gold belt ($4.99)
- Pink boot covers ($3.99)
- Black zip-up ($5.99)
- Black cotton pants ($3.99)
- Cat in the Hat packaged costume ($6.99 – this is the only packaged costume we got so we could use the hat and the big red bow. Lucky for us it was from last year’s stock and a great price!)
- Cut-out from white t-shirt ($1.00 – shared with LO#1 and me)
- Face paint ($3.99 – shared with LO#1 and me)
The grand total for all 4 costumes (Including a 6 bags of Halloween candy and a spooky hanging ghost that we couldn’t resist): $79.35!!!! That’s a steal! We managed to spend less than $80 on all these essentials for costumes, and the plus side is that we can use the different pieces again after Halloween on an everyday basis, unlike the packaged items you’ll buy in store.
I hope you all enjoyed our costume choices! We can’t wait to show you the gang when we are all put together and ready for action!
Now, find the nearest Goodwill and get your budget-friendly Halloween costumes!
Macy & Ruby
Disclosure: All opinions here are our own. We were not paid for this post. We were however given an $80 gift card to Goodwill to shop for thrifty Halloween costumes.