The Day Is Finally Here!

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The day is finally here! My husband and I can finally start buying essential things (like a mop, broom, etc) for our house! I am SO STOKED! I’m gonna be DIY’ing like a son of a gun tomorrow. hehe πŸ˜€ There will be so much Johnny Cash on the record player that my husband will never want to hear it again!

Also, this winter my very good friend Brian might be moving in with us… super-stoked for that too!

I will be posting all sorts of pictures tomorrow of my DIY’ing flurry… be prepared for awesomeness!

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Paranormal Investigations of Missouri Phenomenon

Again, this post doesn’t have anything to do with sustainable living or anything like my normal post (I’m on a roll lately! ;)) Not only do I like to DIY my own household stuff, but I am also a paranormal investigator. This weekend my group and I are going to Carthage Battlefield (a Civil War battlefield) in Carthage, MO. Hopefully we’ll get some EVP’s (Electronic Voice Phenomenon) and some sweet pics. If you want to see the pictures this weekend after we’re done, stop by and like our Facebook page!

DIY Liquid Castile Soap From Castile Bar Soap

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I recently searched for ways to make liquid Castile soap to save money since the stuff on Amazon is a little out of my price range. I found this super easy recipe from a blogger on another site. Here is the url for her recipe if you want to look at hers: http://meetalabama.blogspot.com/2012/03/how-to-make-liquid-castile-soap-from.html

You can easily just copy and paste the url to view her recipe but I will also post it here. I just wanted to give credit where credit was due. πŸ˜‰ I haven’t tried the recipe yet, but I intend to once my batch of body wash is out. Anyway, here is the recipe:

Ingredients:

1 4 oz bar of Castile Soap (some Wal-Marts don’t carry Castile soap, but you can find it at places like Hobby Lobby or a whole foods store)

6 cups water (right from the tap!)

1 TBS glycerine (I found mine at Wal-Mart, but you might be able to find this at whole foods stores or Hobby Lobby as well)

Directions:

1. Grate the soap with a cheese grater. Note: as with any soap, the smaller you grate the soap, the quicker it will dissolve. Remember to wear a face mask of some sort because the soap particles may float in the air, and it kind of sucks to inhale them. I learned that the hard way. LOL!

2. Pour the water into a sauce pan and put on low heat. Make sure the soap is completely dissolved, otherwise it may look somewhat chunky and will clog the container you use. Always remember to watch the mix so it doesn’t boil over!

3. Add the glycerine. Once dissolved, you can either transfer it to a jar, or a pump soap dispenser. I would think the latter would be easier, even though the original poster of this recipe suggested a jar. I think it would just be a lot less mess.You can also use essential oils in this recipe.

And you’re done! Enjoy! πŸ™‚

Note: There are recipes to make Castile soap from scratch as well. I will have more on that at a later date maybe. No promises, but I’ll try!

A bonus to this is that Castile soap does not use animal fats as an emollient. πŸ˜€

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Mr. Rogers Garden Of Your Mind

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Have some tissues ready because this will make you tear up! I do not claim to own this video. It’s from PBS Studios. Man I miss Mr. Rogers! I know this has nothing to do with sustainable living or anything else that I normally post, but I thought this needed to be shared. πŸ™‚

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So THAT’S why I have virtually no food allergies! πŸ˜€

The Slow Foods Mama

country kids less likely to have food allergies

Here’s an interesting article about the prevalence of food allergies among urban kids vs. rural ones.

Go figure, pollution is bad, fresh air and dirt is good . . .

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The Tiny Little Closet Under The Stairs

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None of you know this, but last year my husband and I (along with thousands of other people in our community) lost our house to a huge tornado that ripped through our city last year. My mother-in-law’s place of employment was also torn down, therefor turning their lives upside down as well. She is still unemployed, even after a year of looking. I’m not writing this to get pity or anything, but more as an inspiration and an idea of what a community should be like.

When I first moved into town, I really didn’t like it here. I am a country girl by nature, so I would rather be in the country than the city. I love doing things like gardening and my garden was starting to look good until that fateful day in May. I remember it like it was yesterday instead of one year and two and a half weeks ago. My husband and I were letting one of his brothers live with us at the time and he had his girlfriend over. My husband and I were at his parents’ house just across the street visiting with them, and one of his other brothers and his family. We were just sitting outside shooting the breeze when the wind started to pick up a little bit, and it started to storm. We didn’t really think anything of it because that’s just what the weather here is like. It could be super nice one minute, then raining and blowing the next.

Once it started to rain a little harder, my husband and I decided to walk back home (again, it was across the street). I started up the computer, not giving it two thoughts. Then the power started flickering, so I quickly shut the laptop down. I looked out the window for a second and saw a garbage can flying down the street. When I say flying, I don’t mean it was tumbling down the street. I mean it was AIRBORNE. So I thought to myself “Oh sh–!” and at that moment my brother-in-law and his girlfriend came running down the stairs, and my other brother comes busting in through the front door to see of we’re okay. (His wife was super angry about that, btw, and rightfully so!)

So we’re scrambling for a place to hide when I remembered we have a closet under the stairs (we never used it, THANK GOD!) So I shuffled everyone into the closet, and my brother-in-law that we were visiting with earlier went in last so he could hold onto the door handle. No sooner than we got that door shut did the front window and the second bedroom window bust out and send glass flying into the dining room where we were just one second before. It was the longest half hour of my life with the five of us huddled in that tiny little closet under the stairs, saying our prayers. And just as fast as it started, it was over. Our house was destroyed, and our lives were forever changed.

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This is what our house looked like after the tornado. It doesn’t look that bad, but it looked a lot worse before we got all the holes covered up. It wasn’t enough to prevent a massive fungal bloom though, which is ultimately what destroyed our home.

Immediately following the tornado, almost everyone in our neighborhood pretty much gathered at my mother-in-law’s house because it was the only house that was almost unscathed.

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This is what her house looked like after the tornado. You’d think it would have fared worse than ours, but thank god it didn’t!

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This is what the neighborhood looked like, and we were only on the EDGE of the tornado. The majority of the city that got hit fared much worse than we did.

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St. Mary’s Cross, just a few blocks from where we live. I do not claim to own this photo.

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This is a random picture that I took while surveying the damage about maybe a week or so after the tornado.

It still amazes me how quick even just regular civilians responded after the tornado to help people and, as a tragic consequence, help find our deceased. The fact that a community can join together and help people that they don’t even know is nothing short of inspirational. I will never forget the people that immediately came from all over the U.S. (and even one guy from Japan!) to help us.

As our house comes closer and closer to being finished I think about all the volunteers who took the time out of their lives to help us rebuild ours. Just thinking about it, I’m sitting here crying as I type. lol I hope that our community can continue to keep up this same spirit of hope and selflessness and pass it on to others

We got our house completely demolished during the summer of last year (August I think?), but our foundation wasn’t poured until January. It was a very mild winter, so it was doable. A few months later, on March 16 of this year our house FINALLY started to get built. It wasn’t really that long, but it seemed like forever to us.

Now, almost 3 months after the house started being rebuilt, it’s almost done! We got our power hooked up today, but there seems to be a short somewhere, so 8 of the 21 lights in our house don’t work at the moment. The first time I saw my husband turn on the kitchen light, I automatically started crying (like I’m doing again right now). It seems like we’re getting so much closer to moving out of his parents’ house (bless their hearts for letting us live with them and putting up with me haha) and moving into our new home. I’m so happy I could cry… again!