May 29, 2007 – Soap Making Day 2

After the soap is poured, it needs to sit in the molds until you can make a small indentation with your finger with some pressure – usually within 24-36 hours. Then it’s time to cut!

Linda positions the cutter at the appropriate width and slips the soap cutter down through the slots on the mold.

Here’s a view of a freshly cut block – you may be able to see the cornmeal flecks added to make “farmer’s lava” soap!

The cut bars are stored for 6 weeks or so in a place where they can “breathe.” We usually cover them with a piece of fabric in these mesh baskets. It takes that long for the “soaponification” process to completely transfer the lye and fat to soap.

one year ago…

May 28, 2007 – Memorial Day 2007

It’s Memorial Day 2007. I take this time to pause and remember those that have gone before us, especially those that may have died in the past year.

This year we went to Maple Grove instead of Logan Cemetery. They are both old township cemeteries, about equal distances from our house.  The deaths that we noted as a family were a step-aunt, choir director from church, and two goats, Blaze and a newborn goat.

Here’s the old warming house. 

A peek into a world gone by is the back door of the warming house, left ajar to show the original bathroom.

one year ago…

May 27, 2007 – Soap-Making Day 1

Today was soap-making day with Morning Sun farm. We assembled all the basic ingredients (beef and pork fats, lye, rainwater) and went to work.

By far the most tedious part is cooling and stirring the soap back down to the temperature required to pour it in a mold. It’s a lot of stirring!

Finally the soap “traces” or leaves a small mark when dripped on intself from a spoon. Then it is poured into the molds.

Here are te soapmakers standing next to four batches of soap – one naked goat milk soap, one cornmeal, one lavender, and one orange.

one year ago…