DIY Detergent

Now since we all need to wash clothes we're going to discuss laundry detergent.
Yes you know those bottles that go on sale for $1.99 at your local supermarket.   They are so cheap how can you not buy them.  Well I will tell you why NOT to buy them..  They are loaded with chemicals.

 Here's a simple DIY laundry detergent that will last you at least a year.  It lasts me about 6 months and we are a family of 10 (9) living at home.  So we do alot of laundry here. Put it this way if 1 or 2 loads do not get done then we are backed up and have to spend at least one whole day washing just to catch up.

1 box Washing Soda (buy here
1 box Baking Soda (buy here)
1 box borax (buy here)
1 or 2 bars of soap.  You can either use
Fels Naphta, (buy here)
Zote (buy here)
Dr.Bronners(buy here)
1 or 2(if the small one) container of oxi-clean. (buy here)
This will all come out to about $20 and last you at least a year.
Use 1-2 tbsp per load.

If you prefer a liquid version bring 4 cups of water(per one bar of soap) to a boil, then lower the heat till it simmers.  Add the soap shavings a handful at a time. You can also substitute the liquid Castile soap instead of having to grate another bar of soap. Stir with a wooden spoon till dissolved.
Pour 3 gallons of water in a bucket add in all your ingredients and stir till undissolved. Add more water if needed. Cover the bucket and let sit for 24 hours.  Stir before each use.
1 cup of detergent for a regular load is all that you need.

What I love most about this DIY detergent is that it not only cleans my clothes.  It softens my towels.  I don't know if this happens to you but after a while my towels are no longer as absorbent as they used to be. After a couple of washes your towels will be nice and absorbent.

Oil Pulling

Oil Pulling is when you take an oil either coconut oil, sunflower oil, almond oil etc.. and swoosh it in your mouth for 20 minutes.  I use coconut oil because it is anti bacterial and has tons of health benefits.   You can read about some of the benefits here.  When my kids have cold sores in their mouths I tell them to simply put coconut oil on it.

Oil pulling strengthens your gums, whitens you teeth, prevents tooth decay, etc...  the health benefits are many.

By adding essential oils to your oil you boost the working power of the oil.  Some oils you can add are Lemon ( good for , Thieves, Oregano(spicy), Peppermint etc..

You can get the Coconut oil I use (here)
You can get some essential oils from (here)

Healthy Home

In my quest to have a healthy family I have recently started a journey using essential oils.. 
Now over the past 13 years I have been an avid juicer, (which has helped me greatly with my lack of energy) and I also love to work-out.  My husband also juices at times, but I want my children to join in and trust me they will not drink anything that looks green.  Which means that they will only drink juices made from fruits and veggies that are high in sugar content.  Not wanting to make them diabetic I try to give them smoothies instead. 

With all the chemicals that are in the medications we take its a miracle more of us aren't sick. Lets not forget all all of the toxic household cleaners that we use.  We not only breathe in the stuff but it gets absorbed through our skin.
You can use them to replace almost everything in your house.  From household cleaners, to even beauty products.
So I have decided to phase out all the things chemical in my house and replace them with Essential Oils.

Ready to wear fast

I spent some time reading a couple of  blogs today and everyone posted all of the garments that they had sewn in 2013, unfortunately for me I'd have to say I've sewn at least 5.  This would include sewing for others.

I don't do resolutions but I do make plans.  My plan for this year is to sew more, whether for myself or for others, it doesn't matter.
I joined the RTW(ready to wear) fast over at goodbyevalentino. This might mean lots of skirts and dresses in my wardrobe since I have not been able to sew up a pair of pants where I like the fit.  Not that having lots of skirts and dresses is a bad thing, its just that I am not confident in sewing up pants.  All of my previous attempts have flopped.  But this will make me sew more that's for sure and perfect a pair of pants.  I just have to overcome my fear of failure.
RTW Fast badge
Another way to help me stay and track of this goal is by sewing a garment a month.  I joined the make a garment a month blog challenge.

Well I have a busy year in store for me but I am ready and excited about it.

My Homeschooling story and Lesson Planning part1

I have been homeschooling for about 16 years (and more to go, my youngest is only 4) I started back when it was unknown and only the weird, crazy people did it.  I have learned a lot of things.The most important one is the fact that you don't need to buy all of those expensive curriculum's.  Making your own is extremely doable and not hard at all.  In the beginning it may be a bit time consuming but after you get the hang of if you will breeze right through it. When I started there was a limited amount of curriculum to buy. I started out with no curriculum and used a book (can't remember the name) that basically outlined what was needed in each subject for each grade.  My daughter was only 4 at the time so figuring out what to teach was easy, learn to read, write and math.  For reading I bought the book Teach Your Child To Read In 100 Easy Lessons. She did not like using the book so I just used the concept of the book and a marker board.  She took off reading and I gave the book away. For math I followed the outline from the book I had that taught what was needed for each grade.  Since there really is no math in Pre-K I went ahead with the First Grade math, so she learned how to add and subtract numbers.  We took it slow since she was only 4.  First I made sure that she understood the concept of what addition and subtraction were. We used a lot of manipulatives, and I only taught one concept at a time.  So we did addition until she understood it completely and then I added subtraction when I knew she would not get confused.  Once she understood I then had her memorize her facts.  When she had a good understanding of both I added multiplication and division the exact same way. Since she loved to read and all we were doing at the time was math and reading I decided to buy a curriculum that was heavy on reading.  I went with Sonlight which we both loved.   When my son was ready to start school I went ahead and bought the Sonlight level that corresponded to him.  At this time my 4th child(3rd to be homeschooled) was ready to start school. Sonlight did not offer a payment plan as they do now and it was to expensive for me to have to buy 2 new curriculum's from them.  A friend had given me some of her old school books, and I used those.  She had given me A Beka grade3 for my daughter and A Beka K for my two younger kids.  My daughter did her work on her own, she was given what she needed to do daily and she did it.  Since the other two were to young for that I had to do school with them.  This was not so much a problem for me until it came time to having to correct everything.  This took almost as much time as it did teaching the kids.  It was just to much upkeep for me with 3 young kids.  In speaking with another friend on how much we loved Sonlight because of the reading, oh how we loved the reading, she suggested the Robinson Curriculum.  She was using it and loved the freedom of it.  The kids basically read, write and do Math.  I loved the sound of it since that is exactly what we did before anything, that is how I started. We are still using this curriculum and I love it.

Ok so enough of that and here is how you go about making a lesson plan.
So in almost every state the law for how many school days is basically the same 180 days.  Take that and divide it by 5 and you get 36 weeks of school. You divide the book into 36 weekly readings by dividing the number of pages in the book with the number of weeks.
For this example I will be using the book Charlotte's Web. There are 182 pages in the book. Which gives you about 5 pages per week to read.  This is not always accurate because not all the pages end in a sentence that has a period.  So I go through the pages and adjust them as necessary.  Five pages takes me to page 5 which does not end in a period. So I decide to end that reading on page 4 the 3rd paragraph.  So in my lesson plan book I write CW pages 1-4 till "He's absolutely perfect" for day 1.  For day 2 I write from page 4- till end of chapter on page 8.

I hope this was easy to understand, if you have any questions just ask.

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