Archive | December 2011

Homemade Laundry Detergent

Old Fels-Naptha soap packaging, photographed a...
Image via Wikipedia

I have sensitive skin.  I guess my kids do, also because several years ago they started breaking out in hives.  I only thing I could find that was different was the laundry detergent I was using.  I had bought a different type of the brand I had always used.  I

went back to the old type and the hives went away.  Between them and me there was . only 2 kinds of laundry soap that we could tolerate without breaking out.  I started researching about homemade detergents.  I started making my own & never went back.  Not only is it cheaper, but no one has broken out in hives since!  I thought I would share the recipe I use.  I have a front loading washer, by the way.  This works in place of he detergents.

20 Mule Team Borax
Image via Wikipedia


  • 1/2 cup Washing Soda
  •  1/2 cup Borax
  • 1/3 bar Soap (grated) – I use fels naptha, but any bar soap would work if you do not have sensitive skin


  1. In a large pot, heat 3 pints of water.
  2. Add the grated bar soap and stir until melted. Then add the washing soda and borax. Stir until powder is dissolved, then remove from heat.
  3. In a 2 gallon clean pail, pour 1 quart of hot water and add the heated soap mixture. Top pail with cold water and stir well.
  4. Use 1/2 cup per load, stirring soap before each use (will gel).

I like to double the batch & leave it in a five gallon pail on the floor by the washer.

You can use a powdered (dry) recipe as well.

Dry Laundry Soap

  • 1 cup grated Fels Naptha Soap
  • 1/2 cup washing soda
  • 1/2 cup 20 mule team borax

Mix and store in airtight container or bag. For light or small loads, use 1 tablespoon. For normal loads, use 2 tablespoons. For heavy loads, use 3 tablespoons. Cost per load is about 15 cents.

To make a large batch, grate 6 bars of Fels Naptha Soap and then add 3 cups of Washing Soda and 3 cups of 20 Mule Team Borax. Mix well and store in covered container.

The above recipes will not make suds in your washer so don’t be alarmed. Fels Naptha Soap is a pure soap and typically makes little or no suds in the water. This makes it perfect for use in the new HE washers as well as traditional washers. You will also notice the need to either reduce your laundry softener, or in most cases, you can even eliminate the use of softener completely.


Slow Cooker Lasagna

My family loves lasagna and my favorite way to make it is in my crock pot.  Several people have asked me for my recipe.  Although I don’t follow a recipe for lasagna in the crock pot I will try to share with you how I make it.  (I am normally one who follows a recipe for everything.)  It has become a family favorite.

a slow cooker Oval Crock Pot
Image via Wikipedia


  • 9-12 lasagna noodles
  • 26-32 oz pasta sauce
  • mozzarella cheese
  • 1 tub cottage cheese with 1/2 c parmesan cheese added
  • 1 lb ground beef – browned & drained (I often use venison)
  1. Place a handful or 2 of ground beef in the bottom of the crock pot
  2. Pour spaghetti sauce over ground beef
  3. Place 3 lasagna noodles over sauce mixture
  4. Top noodles with more sauce & ground beef
  5. Next layer on some of the cottage cheese mixture
  6. Cover with mozzarella cheese
  7. Continue layering until you have used all your noodles.  A layer of mozzarella cheese is on top

I cook mine for 3 hours on high & it is perfect.

I always have cooked ground meat in the freezer, so putting this together in the crock pot is really quick.   A great meal for a cold winter day.  Add some homemade bread & a salad for a super meal.

Bread Machine Cinnamon Rolls

I am always looking for recipes to use in the bread machine.  It never leaves my counter.  I tried this one yesterday & it was a big hit with the family.  Definitely a keeper!

Bread Machine Cinnamon Rolls


  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons warm milk
  • 3 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten plus 2 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 4 cups flour (Add a bit more if dough seems too wet after first few minutes of kneading in the bread machine. Also, I used 2 cups white whole wheat flour)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons bread machine yeast


  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2/3 cup brown sugar mixed with 1 tablespoon cinnamon


  • 1 teaspoon milk
  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
  •  4 tablespoons (or less) butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Put the dough ingredients in the bread machine in the order listed and run on the dough cycle. After the dough cycle is finished, roll the dough into a large rectangle and spread it with 2 Tablespoons melted butter and the brown sugar/cinnamon mixture.

Roll up and cut into 10-15 rolls and place in two greased round cake pans. Bake at 325 degrees for 20 minutes or until browned. Spread the icing on as soon as they come out of the oven.

I covered the unbaked rolls with plastic wrap, stuck them in the refrigerator overnight, and then baked this morning.  Awesome!

Thanks Money Saving Mom for a great recipe!