Perfecting the Swirl

I am perfecting my swirl.   The SOAP swirl, that is!!   It is taking some effort, but I am pretty close.   I already have a great recipe.  Very very happy with it.  I have decided I will have several lines.  An All Natural Essential Oil no coloring line, a crazy fragrance oil and color swirls line, and a drunken line.   Yes, I said Drunken Line!!  LOL.  I made 3 drunken soaps over Easter Break. 2 with wine and one with beer.  As well as 4 others.

First was a Grapefruit Chardonnay.  Goat Milk powder is mixed into the wine.  The sugars in the wine made for a very quick trace!!

Next was a Blackberry Merlot.  Again, milk powder was added.

Last, I used my Handyman’s home brewed Peanut Butter Porter.  Added just a dash of musk, hoping to up the manly factor.  I should have added more, but it is still a good product.

At this date, 5/18/17, I have NO Cardonnay left.   And only a few of the Merlot and Porter.

The other swirls are good too.   A Patchouli rose, which was a custom scent….(original is sold out, but the second batch is curing)A cucumber melon (sold out)and Cool Water (also sold out)

All 3 of these soaps are available now.   The next 2 batches are in the cure stage, and will be available soon. Including these beauties.

Some new kids!

We made a trek the Wednesday after Easter to All We Need Farms in Needville TX for some new does,  Nothing like a Nubian goat!!   Those ears–oh man those ears!! 

She had 2.   We went for only one.

The Blue Eyed Boy chose the darker and more annoying one.  HAHAH  She is a nibbler, and a super nosy busybody.

Loads of personality!  But somehow, we couldn’t leave the other one.   They are not from the same mama, but they were raised as if they were.   So the quieter paler doeling came home too.

Flat tire made for an interesting pit stop.   2 goats on a noose leash at a truck stop!

However, once we got them home, the quiet pale one became SUPER vocal!!  Hollers for attention.  She can’t stand to be without a human.  Both of them are so loving, so sweet, so personable.   Nothing like a Nubian!

Their names?   The darker is Reese’s Pieces.   The lighter is Peanut Butter Cup.   We call them Reese and Peanut.

My Thalia was super jealous for awhile.   Can you tell??

And all 3 of the big girls were a little uncertain of these 2 new creatures.

But now, all get along like they have been together for ages.  (look close—there are 5 goats here!  haha)

And they all love the new paddock that HandyMan created for them.

 

New baby??!!!!!

Update–Oh heavens I wrote this ages ago and forgot to post it!!!  LOL.  Somehow it got lost.  This ended up NOT being the baby we got!!   But we are still so happy with what we did end up getting.  Stay tuned.  That post will be up soon!!!

Original post written April 12, 2017:

We are SOOO excited!!!  On the anniversary of Juniper’s Gotcha Day, we are expecting a new baby.  All We Need Farms in Needville TX has a set of twin does.  This is the stolen pic of one with a milk musache.

One of the twins will be OURS!  We sadly have to wait until the Wednesday after Easter to go get her. Until then, extra preperations will be made.  Baby Thalia ended up hurt by Juniper her second night here, so we first need a Baby Pen created.  We are also praying for babies in early December.


My poor hubby is also tired of the hay mess in his shed.  Second is a hay loft.


Third, the barn was never properly skinned….we used plastic to protect this year.  Next winter will have a properly protected barn.


AND (best for last)……Brewmaster is making a huge expanded paddock for the girls in our sideyard!!!   They will love this extra space! Especially on weekends and during the summer.   The dogs will have their backyard, and the goats will have theirs!!

Some more good news…..my homemade soap is selling well!   The few who bought it at the last craft fair are clamoring for more.


I know most soapers sneer at anything Hot Processed (ie cooked in a crockpot), but I LOVE the quirky imperfections it delivers!  I have a fairly solid recipe finally.  Still a few tweaks to be made, but I am 90% happy with my product. I can’t wait to use fresh milk from Thalia, instead of the powdered I use now.

And then the cheese…….OH the CHEESE!!!!!

GBye, y’all!!!

Sailboats for Gitch

There is an amazing man at my church.  He and his beautiful bride welcomed a very young me into their home and family when I moved here so many years ago. Then my HandyMan moved here, married me, and was also welcomed. Then a baby came, and their granddaughter was one of her GodMothers.

He loved sailing and his beautiful sailboat. So when this fabric rolled into Quilts Bayou, I couldnt help it. Even HandyMan (who had come by for a quick visit) said I had to buy it.

So I did.  And I know it must have been well over a year by now. Well, he turned 90 yesterday.  And I just HAD to get this quilt done.  But then once I got the flimsy done, me and the girls fought over who got to quilt it!!

Soooo….I used a light wedgewood  blue and a gentle water type pattern.

blue sailboat quilt

Then WildChild used a varigated teal to add some waves.

Then crazy Apprentice took a navy thread and put peacock feathers ALL OVER it!  Hahahah.  It came out amazing.

Now to plan a few more quilts to be done over the summer…!

We three make a great team!  These girls are amazing.

Here you can see all 3 threads used for the quilting.

And even LC the Cat approves!   YAY!I am hopeful that Mr Gitch will enjoy his quilt for many more years.

 

4H Parish and District Livestock Shows

4H shows have come and gone.  Both rabbit and goat.   Apprentice didn’t do so well this year in Parish, but did much better in District.  2nd in class as well as 2nd in Showmanship in her class.  I’d like to post more, but her bunny this year is a witch, and not photogenic at all.  LOL.   In the past, Apprentice has not won squat with HunnyBunny (way too big for her breed) but has netted 2 Champion and 1 Reserve in Showmanship.  This year, the rabbit ruined her chances.   The doe is CRAZY!

The goats did well in both.   In District, Thalia the Nubian took 1st.  lol.  She as the only ONLY Nubian!!   Juniper the Pygmy took Reserve Champion, and best in class.  We will take that.   It netted WildChild a few buckles!

At District, Thalia had competition and took last.  Judge said she was too thin.  BUT the winner came over and chatted later and said that in ADGA shows his doe took last for being overweight.   So who knows!  The biggest things we learned with her is that they MUST be shaved (OMGOSH she changed COLORS!!!) and that coats are needed when it drops to 40 at night.

Juniper the Pygmy took best in class (ONLY one!!  lol) but then took Reserve Champion as well as Grand LA bred.   And there WAS competition.

WildChild didn’t do so well in Showmanship, but we had only figured it out the night before.   Her 4H class did NOT prepare her at all.  So while she took dead last, I was still very impressed with how hard she tried.   Because of my new Working status, we were unable to take the does to State.   I didn’t have enough days left.   But next year, I hope to.   Because I feel like the Nubian at least will impress a true dairy goat judge.

TAKE US HOME

I owe so much to several neighbors.    Their help has been amazing.    They will probably never see this, but Stacey Rousell, Karen Quinn, Chrissy LeBleu, Amy and Syndey Pearce, Harold and Sue Theriot, and Thomas Cox were all amazing to this crazy newbie.   Thank You.

The soap saga

So I have discovered LOTS of issues with soaping. First, Hot Process may be faster, but it is super thick. Which is resulting in weird holes in the round bars I make.

Maybe they would look better if I had a classier mold than a Pringles can, but I doubt it. Lol.

I did succeed in making a pretty MeltAndPour for my niece.   There’s a plus!

Then the Cold Process….I like that the artistic part can be added. Swirls and stuff. Sadly, I had issues there too. The fragrance oil made 2 batches seize up, resulting in these weird looking bars.

It may be the fragance I bought at Michaels. I have no idea. I can say that I am not hapy with the scent. Not. At. All. The third batch seemed to work better and in was super happy.

Until the top turned white with soda ash.  Sigh.  I hope I can remove it.

There is also a storage issue. I have to soap CP long before I need it, so that I can give it time to cure. HP can technicaly be used right away. However, a short cure time does yield a more superior bar. Harder, longer lasting, and the lather feels better.

I also have discovered that additives may need to be tweaked.  I made a heavenly HP Mocha soap with coffee grounds as an additive for exfoliation.   Let me tell you…..plain ole Community Coffee is way too large of a grind for exfoliation!  Be sure to rinse really well, because a tiny piece getting stuck in delicate areas HURTS!

For the last craft fair I also made bath bombs.  When they were fresh, they were amazing

But SWLA weather and a saran-wrapped bomb do not play well. All the leftover bombs have crumbled into nothing. The waste of money, time, and ingredients is very upsetting.

This was the spread from November’s Craft Fair.  Now, to get some more goodies for the March one!