I'm thankful for friends/family who inspire me to try new things. There are so many things I do in my life that are inspired by others, but I'm just going to focus on one today.
I have some friends who are green, and I mean GREEN. If they can save energy somewhere, they save it. They compost. They unplug everything when not in use. They have a garden. They use special biodegradable shampoo. They never use their dryer in the summer. The list goes on. Call them crunchy, hippies, green, liberal or whatever you want, but they know how to save money and are doing their part to save the planet.
Anyway, I've known for a long time that they make their own laundry detergent with all natural ingredients. I guess I chalked it up to another one of their hippie antics (haha) and didn't think much about it. I'm not sure what snapped in me and made me want to try it, but I'm so glad I did! I calculated it out and it will cost us about $3-4 a year for laundry detergent from this point on; the website with the directions estimates that each load costs about a penny. Plus, it actually works better than or as good as any store bought detergent I've tried and you reuse the containers so it's one less thing to throw in your recycling bin. It took about 10 minutes or so to make and was super easy - if you know how to use a stove and measure water, you can do this.
All of the information can be found at http://www.thefamilyhomestead.com/laundrysoap.htm.