Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Odds and Ends Savings Part 1

Part 1

Laundry detergent.

I have learned to coupon to the point of finding $1 laundry detergent, which is a pretty good buy, you get about ½ gallon or so for that $1. Then I remembered watching 17 kids and counting (yep that was before she had a few more). They made their own laundry detergent. I thought to myself then…..I don’t think I’ll ever do that! Well guess what? Not only am I doing THAT! I am using their recipe!!!! You can find the recipe on their website, but I have it on my computer so I’m going to copy and paste. But if you search the Duggars look under recipes and it’s in there with the food recipes.

Homemade Liquid Laundry Soap- Front or top load machine- best value
½ Cup Borax
- Grate bar of soap and add to saucepan with water. Stir continually over medium-low heat until soap dissolves and is melted.
-Fill a 5 gallon bucket half full of hot tap water. Add melted soap, washing soda and Borax. Stir well until all powder is dissolved. Fill bucket to top with more hot water. Stir, cover and let sit overnight to thicken.
-Stir and fill a used, clean, laundry soap dispenser half full with soap and then fill rest of way with water. Shake before each use. (will gel)
-Optional: You can add 10-15 drops of essential oil per 2 gallons. Add once soap has cooled. Ideas: lavender, rosemary, tea tree oil.
-Yield: Liquid soap recipe makes 10 gallons.
-Top Load Machine- 5/8 Cup per load (Approx. 180 loads)
-Front Load Machines- ¼ Cup per load (Approx. 640 loads)

I have used it exactly as written for the past 6 months. We love it (and the savings). Paige actually is the one to make it, it’s that easy. As written, it costs about 30-40 cents per gallon! Yes I said GALLON! But I read somewhere you could substitute the Fels-Naptha soap bar with Ivory soap. Fels-Naptha is $1.29 per bar, I bought 6 bars of Ivory for $1 (had to use 2 bars though). But still that cut our cost down even more! So yeah, I’m excited!!! But back on track, the Fels-Naptha soap bar, A& H washing soda, and Borax can all be purchased at Kroger! They are all on the laundry detergent aisle, same side even. The bar of soap is usually on a top shelf, and the other 2 are usually side by side. And just to make life super simple, we put 1 cup Borax so we wouldn’t have to remember which one was half a cup! lol, I know I’m lazy!

Dishwasher Powder
As an added bonus, you can use the washing soda and borax in your dishwasher and it works just fine! Mix 1 cup of each together and blend well, add 2 tablespoons to your dishwasher, does great! Cascade gel tablets cost about 25 cents each (if you catch them on sale) this costs about 14 cents a load. And you already have that stuff on hand if you’re making the laundry detergent!!! Another little added hint, if you make Crystal Lite by the ½ gallons, those little pre-measured cups the powder comes in is the exact amount you need, so I use one as a measuring cup in my dish detergent.

I have never been one to put fabric softener in my wash. I did use dryer sheets, any kind really. Mainly to help decrease the static in our clothes. (When Jr and I first got together he decided that was a waste of 5 bucks and skipped buying it, I put my foot down, either we got dryer sheets or I was gone!) That was a little drastic, but oh my! It was horrible! In the same breath, I really detest used dryer sheets that tend to float all over the house. I tried the bounce bar and for some reason I can’t for the life of me make it stick (others I know have no problem, so it must be me). Then I taught a coupon class for a lovely lady in Ethridge and she suggested trying the following: take some fabric softener (I’ve been using Downy because I got it super cheap) and fill the bottle about ¼ full and add the rest with water…..spray on top of your damp clothes in the dryer and dry as normal. Works like a charm!

With this much savings I just can't bring myself to buy "real" laundry detergent anymore!  If you are afraid to invest in the ingredients to try it let me know!  Jr sells 2 liter bottles of the stuff for 50cents.  You can try a small amount to see if you like it.


  1. Hey girl, I wanna a couple of two liters from you....let me know!!!

  2. We'll get with you before the weekend!