More unplugged night activities

I’ve been lax in reporting our last few unplugged night activities since our gingerbread house.  The week after that particular project, we did something we never did before.  A puzzle!  It was fun!  I was psyched that we were using the Dining Room for something other than the rarely occurring holiday dinner.  Also, David had admitted to me (when we were almost done, a couple of days later) that he never finished a puzzle to completion before, so it was kind of a big deal.  Here’s a pictorial history of our progress:

Night 1

Progress after a little more work on night 2:

Completion on Day 3!:

We were proud that we finished it and that we did the whole thing together.  So much so, that we bought a cheap frame at Michael’s and hung it up on the wall!  I know it’s just a puzzle, but to me, it means so much more.  I love it.

The following week, we did not partake of unplugged night.  We had a wicked snow storm that froze all of Atlanta over for 4 days straight!

The week after that though, unplugged night was back on!   This time, David taught me how to make homemade soap!   He took a soap-making class when we went to the John C Campbell Folkschool together a few months ago.  Little did I know that he would LOVE making soap, so I asked him to teach me.  We made two batches of soap last night.  Both were a basic cold-process.  the first was a classic recipe using olive, coconut and palm oils with freesia for the scent.  The second was made up of olive oil and palm kernel flake, oatmeal and a lavender/jasmine scent.  Gosh.  Almost sounds yummy.  Anyway, here’s some pics of our soap making adventures:

Here is David scooping out some Palm oil

…and here is David’s favorite part…mixing the lye and the water.  The chemical reaction was crazy…and really HOT with yucky fumes.  This concoction had to be mixed out in the porch with the ceiling fan on (brrr).

Then, when the melted oils are mixed with the lye (both at 90 degrees) you get this:

Here are some of the ingredients that we used…the evil, but necessary lye and the essential oils for scents.

Pouring the soap in the form:

Heres our second batch…the oatmeal one.  For this one, we poured the soap in silicon cupcake molds.

Once all the forms were filled, we let them sit for 24 hours.  Tonight, we took the soap out of the forms and then cut the big block of soap into smaller blocks.  Here’s the (almost) finished product.

Why almost finished?  The soap will take 4 weeks to cure.   This allows the lye to dissipate.   Gheez.  I wanna use it now!

I wonder what our next unplugged activity will be?


5 thoughts on “More unplugged night activities

  1. This is great, Wendy! Cody and I started making our own beer about a month ago and our first batch will be ready this weekend. We don’t have high hopes, but it’s been a fun process. One day we’ll have to start bartering: our mediocre beer for your awesome-looking soap. 😉

    1. Brewing your own beer! That is AWESOME! I’d like to try to that or even homemade wine someday. Ahhh, fermentation. What a finicky, neat thing. Oh, and yes…barter sounds good!

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