Saturday, September 21, 2013

A Week's Moments

This week was full of good making-shift moments. Here are a few I thought I'd share. I may write in more detail about some of these later.

We slaughtered 3 roosters last weekend, including this young one. I braised him with onions and sun dried tomatoes and the meat was delicious.

Little Sister harvested the seed pods from the oregano and filled a saucer with oregano seeds. "I'm making dinner, Mommy."

I made my second batch of soap, this one with a bit of oatmeal and honey. The swirly dark color surprised me and I'm a little concerned about the white bloom on top. Is that ash? It seems a bit greasy.

Everyone in Austin rejoiced because we had RAIN. A real, honest-to-god downpour with flooding and everything. I can't remember the last time we had a good, solid rain. Hurray!!! A good way to start the fall gardening season methinks.

Our little patio pond. Toads like to hang out there and make love matches in the evenings. The results of said love matches hatched this last week.

Scads of tadpoles in our little pond. I'm sure the resident goldfish have been gobbling them up but there are only so many they can eat in a day.


  1. Hey Girl! The white stuff on top sometimes shows up if the soap is mixed at too hot a temperature (over 125 degrees) or if some of the ingredients lend themselves to "soda ash"* (ie - too many soft oils high in saturated vs unsaturated fats...)

    Swirls might show up when/if something wasn't mixed enough - like the honey or whatever.

    Take the tip of your tongue and touch it briefly to the soap - if it "zaps" you then it's unusable. If it just tastes soapy, let it cure and go for it.

    *It's not really soda ash. It's not really clear what it is. I think we soapers just call it that, but really it's hard to know what it really is. Spraying rubbing alcohol over the top of soap while it's in the mold or mixing in a small amount of melted beeswax just before your pour the soap will help get rid of it. Also, mixing soap between 100-110 degrees seems to help, too!

    I still get soda ash, from time to time - annoying as all hell.

    Nice roo in a pot, by the way. Yummy yummy backyard meat.

    1. Okay, I licked it and it didn't zap me. Whew. I'm sure that I mixed it too hot because I accidentally heated the oils more than I intended this time. So the greasy stuff *is* ash? I expected ash to be powdery. I think I might just scrape it off with a butter knife after it is cured. I had thought maybe I superfatted it too much and was left with too much unsaponified oil. (I did use the lye calculator on Bramble Bee, but still.) Thank you so much for the advice!

  2. Where ever we live, if we get chickens, you and the Mr. need to come help me when it's butchering time!

    We got a lot of rain last week, too. So glorious. Sunday morning when we got up, it was 49. Yippee!

  3. We will gladly assist. And hooray for rain! And fall!

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