This week’s homemade trick is inspired by a post by the good lady Karrie over at HappyMoneySaver.com. The recipe, if you can call it that, feels almost unfair in its simplicity – just two ingredients, one of which you can probably get away without:
[For those of you who can’t wait, the ratio is 15-20 drops per 1 c salts. You may use less if you find the scent too strong – I, however, like nice pungent socks! Wait, that didn’t come out right… anyway, use 2 Tbsp per load. 4 c salts will make 32 loads’ worth of crystals.]
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Since washing soda [sometimes called soda ash, scientific name = sodium carbonate] is one of the ingredients we’ll use the most, and sometimes hard to find in some areas [and since it’s possible for my food stamps to cover it] we’ll start off this series with how to make it ourselves! It’s inedible, which means food stamps won’t cover it, but it’s dead easy to make with FS-friendly items.
Believe it or not, some serious science goes into making this stuff. I have no idea how to explain what any of it is, but you can read all about it over here from Penny, the lovely author of Penniless Parenting. The end of it is that basically if you take baking soda, and expose it to high heat, over time some magic science-y stuff happens that makes it release carbon dioxide and turn into washing soda. Continue reading →