It's unusual…

..what started out as an IVF journey and ended up being about life

Do It Yourself – Experiment One May 6, 2012

Filed under: Do It Yourself!! — gertyrae @ 9:47 pm
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Making Laundry Detergent

Okay, so I figured I had to give this a shot. Not only should it save boatloads of money if it works out, but I now have some kind of idea what is going into my laundry detergent.

I had seen a few posts here and there about making it yourself and this “recipe” seemed to be the most popular. It was not nearly as difficult to make as I expected. Like I had read, the worst part was grating the soap. I’ve been using it for a few days now and it seems to work great. Now, if it lasts as long as it should the savings will be significant.

Here’s the recipe for those that may want to give it a shot:

  • 1 Box of Borax  $5
  • 1 Box of Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda $3.50
  • 1 Container of OxyClean $6.00
  • 2 Bars of Zote Soap $3.00
  • 1 4 pound Box of Arm & Hammer Baking Soda $4.00
  • 1 Bottle of Purex Crystals Fabric Softener $5.00

The ingredients as we used them

Total Cost:$26.50 — and this is supposed to last approximately a year.

To make it, you need a large bucket. I mixed it in portions to make life a little easier. Plus, I had Colin helping so it gave him something to do by mixing the powders together and I would add the Zote soap as I grated it. I think it took us an hour total. Once it’s all mixed, you use 1-2 tablespoons per load of laundry. I followed another bloggers suggestion of putting the detergent into the empty Purex bottle and then using the cap to measure out detergent per load. The middle line on the cap is 2 tablespoons so there is no thinking involved 🙂


this is the soap all grated up


Colin mixing up the detergent

After it was all mixed, I put the detergent into some extra large storage bags I had. I ended up with 2 large bags of detergent and the Purex bottle full. I figure that even if I only get six months out of it, I’m still saving around $50 since I was using Method detergent at $12/bottle on sale and I went through a bottle a month…


This is what I ended up with when I was done.

By the way, this works in HE machines also.

Now I have to find a “recipe” for dishwashing liquid!

I just wanted to come back to say – I made this detergent in May and just had to make a new batch a few weeks ago. Started using it the beginning of December. So, $28 for 6 months of detergent works out just fine for me! And it really works great, my clothes smell good and they come out clean every time.


Okay so I’m poor… April 15, 2012

Filed under: Life — gertyrae @ 2:10 am
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…and now that I’ve gotten that off my chest I feel better. On the upside,  I think  I have accepted poverty (for now) and will just deal with it.

We are going to try to battle it a bit though. Step One – get a car that doesn’t burn so much gas. We have two trucks right now and they both average 16mpg so we are going to dump mine and get a car that will get more like 30mpg.

And I’m going to start loving cheap stuff!!! Baking for example – cheap and gratifying…and Colin loves to sample the results so it works for everyone. I really like the decorating part better than the baking. And after months of trying I have finally figured out royal icing. And I’m starting to make biscuits for the pups…hopefully better for their skin and coats.

Also, running – have decided to run a marathon this year so I’m training now. Wish me luck on this one cuz it ain’t gonna be easy. Because for me I can’t just do a marathon, I have to do a trail marathon in the hills of Connecticut. Should be interesting to say the least.

Oh – and I have to share this Colinism: sitting at dinner the other night. He’s on my lap, hugs me and says “mommy i love you, you are the best mom” then looks over at Dan and says “and daddy you are my dad and you are the best dad”…Misty comes over cuz she’s looking for scraps and Dan says “and who is that”…Colin’s response: “This is my sister Misty!” and he gives her a big hug. Totally unprompted, we never say Misty is his sister and yet she is just a part of his family…And Stormy is his pest 🙂

So that’s my update – not much else going on…


Money Changes Everything March 28, 2012

Filed under: Uncategorized — gertyrae @ 8:14 am
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and how I wish we had some. This is just a total vent. I don’t understand how two hard-working people can struggle like we do. I could understand if we lived “large” but we certainly don’t. We eat home every day, don’t go on trips anywhere, don’t buy expensive items – nothing like that. My husband has a few fantasy leagues that he does and that’s about it. I go to dinner with my friends for a bookclub every month or so…those are our big “expenses”. And yet, every month I’m trying to figure how to pay the mortgage and put milk in the fridge. Wishing I could give my son the small things that his parents had.

We were watching a DVD the other night that my in-laws had made up of some old 8MM movies and I was sort of astounded by the fact that they were able to afford, on one income – a summer cottage in CT, boat, 2 cars, a home in Sayville, pre-school for their FOUR children…etc, etc. One income – and my father-in-law was a fireman so we aren’t talking lawyer salary, here. Their mortgages were like $100/month. Could you imagine?! Here we are trying to struggle and pay $2500/month for our house which will never have the value increase that was seen in the past. There is no way we are selling this bad boy for even $500,000 so what happens then?! When we are ready to sell, we’ll be happy if we get back what we paid and we actually won’t get that if you figure in all the interest we’ve laid out.

And then there are all the “haves” (cuz I figure we are pretty close to “have not”). How in the world do they do it?! What banks are they robbing? I just don’t get how people can afford to do what they do. It’s so friggin expensive just to live daily life – how do you go out and buy a $500 purse?

I don’t want $500 purses. I would just love to say that I want to take my kid to Hershey Park and I can. Or Disney -hahahahaha. I would love to be able to pay my mortgage without wondering how I’m going to cover the rest of my expenses that week, put oil in the tank without worrying about how we’ll get to work, have a car that I can rely on as opposed to wondering what the next thing to go on my Santa Fe with 250,000 miles….

It’s just such a sad state of affairs that most people have to live like we do and that the middle class pretty much no longer exists. Wouldn’t it be nice if we had some kind of balance back in the world?