Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Using my Soap

It's a strange feeling using soap you have made. It's rather wonderful to see all the bubbles and have clean hands too.

The top layer of soap has been washed away, leaving some of the ground oats at the surface. This makes a wonderful defoliator. Vanilla has a reputation on discolouring soap, and this has happened. But, as it's taken a stark white to a very soft cream, it isn't a problem. 

Something I hadn't counted on was the sight one sees when lifting the bar of soap. There's a brown sludge trail! No brown on the bottom of soap bars from now on! There used to be a crisp between the vanilla layer and the brown base. This has changed into a gradient. It's rather pretty.

Saturday, April 14, 2018


Behold! My very first bar of soap. It's a melt-and-soup soap. There's three layers. The top is the soap medium with ground up oats. The middle is has vanilla added, and the bottom is also vanilla with brown colouring added.

Let's just say, I learned stuff. The new jug I bought for melting the soap in melted. If you leave the soap in the microwave too long it boils. Thankfully, I haven't had experience of burning soap. From all accounts, it's not something I want to experience! 

Another thing I have learned is how difficult it is to get a good brown using red, blue and green. It's also more likely to come out looking like poo. The mould I used (a small food storage box) was on the big side. Smaller bars of soap are easier to use.

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

An Action-packed Afternoon

This is Chicken Thief, formerly known as Ava. On Monday evening she wandered into the kitchen and snatched a chicken carcass and started chopping on it. Chicken skin - good. Chicken meat - good. Chicken stock - good. Chicken bones - bad! She managed to eat a thigh or two and a wing. Not a lot for the size of dog she is, but enough to cause problems.

Ava had been having problems with diarrhea last week, and had been on rice and chicken/salmon. On Tuesday, her poo was the consistency of  soft serve ice cream, with bones. Today, she was back to diarrhea, but some drops of fresh blood, and she was also straining to poo, with nothing coming out.

The interwebs recommendation was to take her to the vet. I called and explained the situation. The vet said they weren't hugely worried, but would like to see her just to make sure. After the vet examined Ava, she was wasn't too concerned, but gave her some medication that will help her colon. She was please to see Ava, but wasn't worried for her as she is bright, lively and interested in things. We've been asked to keep her on rice and chicken (or salmon) for 72 hours. The vet expects everything to work its way through her system.

And now we need to get a system sorted whereby the Chicken Thief can't have access to chicken carcasses!

Monday, April 9, 2018

"Mondays, when all the possibilities are possible"

I love Mondays, when all the possibilities are possible. It's a fresh start. What's happened has happened, unless you have a TARDIS or a DeLorean equipped with a flu capacitor. But the future stretches ahead, and there are so many possibilities.

It's rather spring-line today, and that's bringing out the decluttering/tidying/cleaning desires in me. The declutter and tidying of the Offspring's bedroom is going very well. The areas that have already been done are staying rather spiffy looking. Day by day we are chipping away at the clutter and mess. The trick is going to be helping them to get into routines and patterns that will allow the decluttered, tidy state to prevail.

Work has started in my bedroom. The spring cleaning begins in there, and I'm all revved up and raring to go. As the sun is out, I decided bed linens were the first order of business. Next will be sweeping and steam cleaning the floor. The rug will be swept, and the mirror polished. And this is starting to sound reminiscent of the song the Dwarves sang as they were washing the dishes in Bilbo Baggin's house!

Right! I'm off!

Friday, April 6, 2018


The sunshine of recent days has spurred me into wanting to ditch my blacks, whites and greys and move into my summery white and navy clothes. 

IronMay is coming up, and I bought new trainers, and earned a couple of heel blisters. This prompted me to look at mules when I was in town yesterday, and for the first time in quite a number of years I was able to buy shoes in a shop rather than ordering them on-line. 

 Today's ensemble is a navy, v-neck t-shirt with 1/2 length sleeves, a white, long length linen skirt with navy over-printing of stylistic flowers, and my new black suede mules. I'm feeling very summery, and hope I don't have to go outside today as I will not be warm enough! There's two wonderful things about this outfit. The first is the mules - footwear without the risk of aggravating my 'sports injury', and the new skirt has pockets! Yes, Pockets. The joy of finding pockets in women's clothing is fantastic. I have pockets!

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Kitchen Declutter

The kitchen declutter continues. The drawer containing seeds, nuts and dried fruit has been decluttered and tidied. The tea towel drawer has been tidied (nothing to declutter), and also the drawer with food wraps, cling film, foil etc.

There are two more drawers to go. Both have cake decorating things in them. Then it's on to the cupboards and pantry.

There's been a new addition to the kitchen, a nesting set of three stainless steel bowls, with lids. The smaller two fit very nicely onto the same shelf in the fridge. One currently has stock with chunks of chicken and veggies for the dog, and the other has some coleslaw left over from dinner. 

These bowls were bought to replace a set of plastic ones that were surrendering to the ravages of time and use. The old bowls will leave the house tomorrow. They would have been binned today, but it was raining and I didn't fancy a trek down a wet garden to dispose of the bowls. Instead they are by the back door, ready for a break in the weather.

Monday, April 2, 2018

Decluttering the House Again

Decluttering is going to be a lifelong goal. Each time round the decluttering cycle I keep things I later realise I don't want or need. Also more things come into the house and become clutter. 

Yesterday, I started decluttering from the beginning again. My kitchen sink was cleaned and the area around it decluttered. Today, the work surfaces will be decluttered and cleaned.

The utensils were decluttered a few weeks ago, and the utensils drawer was given a good clean and reorganisation. The cutlery drawer was also done recently. The rest of the kitchen drawers will be next.