General ramblings

Blogger’s block…

OK, so after 360 blog posts, I have run out of inspiration.

I have lots of things I would like to tell you about, but have not yet done anything towards.

Like Hubby’s trousers with the large biro stain on that I can’t get out and so am planning to dye.


Like BigSmall’s trousers that have now gone beyond patching and I plan to use to make some doorstops.

Like attempting to make my own washing powder.

Like attempting to make my own soap, once I have sourced all the ingredients and a secondhand stick blender.

BUT I can’t.

Sooooo, here is a quick Make Do and Mend tip for you instead.

You can cut up lids from old Tupperware pots Tom make very good pan scrapers /bread choppy up things like they use on the Great British Bake Off.


AND the winner of the Homemade Kids Giveaway.

Drumroll please…

The winner is Kate Mapstone! Can you e-mail me your address Kate (to and I will post it out.

Thankyou for all your lovely comments, and I hope to be back tomorrow with a more inspired/inspiring post.


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  • Reply Jo aka Kiwijo August 25, 2013 at 12:35 pm

    Soap making is HUGE fun, once you get going you will have Xmas pressies sorted. I used equiptment I already had in my kitchen (just made sure it was rinsed thoroughly afterwards), and if you are using the ‘cold pressed’ method, make sure you leave it long enough to ‘cure’. You can find lots of books on it and its really quite addicitive. Im looking forward to reading all about how you get on :o)

    • Reply Jen August 25, 2013 at 6:30 pm

      What recipe did you use Jo? Some look pretty straightforwards and some significantly less so!
      If I put the stuff in the dishwasher afterwards, I am assuming it will be ok to use what we have?

  • Reply Hazel August 25, 2013 at 7:30 am

    I’ve been thinking about the stick blender for soap and I was sure I’d read on another blog about just using your kitchen equipment. I found it here http://down—to— .
    Rhonda just uses her regular (stainless steel) pans and kitchen stick blender and washes them well afterwards. This is what I felt intuitively, before I read the tutorials insisting that you have to have a separate everything for soap making, after all it’s just…soap! So I’m going to do it with my kitchen stuff.

    Rhonda’s blog is great, btw, if you haven’t come across it before. Well worth a browse.

    • Reply Jen August 25, 2013 at 10:32 am

      Have just had a quick look Hazel, and it looks amazing! There is a recipe for condensed milk that I really want to try, and once I have all the bits and ingredients, I am definitely trying the soap!
      I am assuming you have tone careful, as the caustic soda is, well, caustic!

      • Reply Hazel August 26, 2013 at 7:03 am

        Yes, I’m waiting until the children are back at school! Mine are older than yours, but I can guarantee there’ll still be a “mu-um!” just as I’m trying to remember whether you MUST add the lye to the water or the water to the lye to avoid catastrophe! Think I’ll lock the dogs in the garden too…

        • Reply Jen August 26, 2013 at 8:30 pm

          I am starting to think that making soap may be more exacting than I am quite ready for..!

  • Reply Nic August 24, 2013 at 9:44 pm

    Oh, making your own washing powder is easy peasy if you have the ingredients. I’ve been doing it for ages. Just soda bicarb, soda crystals, soap flakes and essential oil for srummy smells. Haven’t been brave enough to try soap yet!

    • Reply Jen August 25, 2013 at 10:34 am

      Have you got a recipe I could try?

      • Reply Nic August 25, 2013 at 7:26 pm

        I use this as a guide and make up as big a batch as I have ingredients – 2 cups of grated soap/soap flakes, 1 cup of soda crystals, 1 cup of borax substitute and whatever essential oil I fancy, all mixed together and that’s it. I use about a tbspn per load. It works for me, but it’s just me. Be curious to know if it works for a family’s needs. Good luck! (PS I could’ve sworn I’ve put bicarb in too, but if I have, I obviously was improvising!)

        • Reply Jen August 25, 2013 at 10:04 pm

          Fab, Thankyou!

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